Alan Pardew’s Crystal Palace side lost 4-0 to Manchester City on Saturday and the manager believes it was just one man who made the difference.
Sergio Aguero scored either side of half-time in City’s rout of Palace, but Pardew insisted the game was an even one despite the nature of the scoreline.
Palace have now gone five games without a league goal and Pardew said signing a striker was the club’s top priority in January.
Pardew has already stated his interest in free agent Emmanuel Adebayor, who has a proven track record as a goalscorer in the Premier League, although he admitted in a perfect world he might be able to call on the services of Aguero.
“Obviously we are trying to bring a striker in,” Pardew said.
“Put Sergio Aguero in our side against Manchester City and I think we would have won that game.
“I’m an experienced manager and I’ve not had many teams that have played as well as that and come away with [a] 4-0 [defeat].
“I don’t want to pull the wool over the eyes of the fans who weren’t here today but the fans who came will back me up. It was a game that really and truly, we were in. It was pretty even.
“They scored a goal Wayne [Hennessey] should save. The second goal’s a deflection. We’re pushing, we’re pushing. Man City are obviously clinical when they have the cushion of two goals, and they proved that. But we weren’t peppered.
“I can’t think of a period when Man City really had us under the cosh. It was a very weird game in a lot of ways.”
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