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Cameron Jerome scored against his former club as Crystal Palace recorded a valuable 2-0 Barclays Premier League victory over Cardiff City.
The striker, on loan from Stoke City, opened his account for the Selhurst Park club with a headed effort six minutes in. Marouane Chamakh then scored his second goal in as many matches to double the hosts' lead after the interval, as Palace's won for the second time in as many attempts under new manager Tony Pulis.
The result gives Palace their first back-to-back league victories of the season, while Cardiff are winless in five.
Pulis made no changes to the Palace side that beat West Ham 1-0 on Tuesday, with former Cardiff duo Danny Gabbidon and Jerome included in his starting XI. Kim Bo-Kyung came in for Aron Gunnarsson in the visitors' only alteration from Wednesday's goalless draw at Stoke.
Cardiff were quick out of the blocks as an unmarked Fraizer Campbell got his head to a Don Cowie cross in the second minute, but Julian Speroni pushed the ball behind for a corner.
However, it was Palace who broke the deadlock four minutes later, with Jerome netting against the club he spent two seasons with between 2004 and 2006. Jason Puncheon chipped the ball into the six-yard box and Jerome sent a downward header beyond David Marshall, ending his 21-game goal drought.
Palace continued to put pressure on the Cardiff defence, with Barry Bannan sending an effort high and wide of the target from the edge of the penalty area. As Cardiff tried to recover from the hosts' high-tempo start, Gary Medel drilled a shot from distance wide of the right-hand post.
Joel Ward then stormed forwards for the hosts on the stroke of half-time, exchanging passes with Mile Jedinak, but his final effort was deflected wide for a corner.
Palace continued to attack in the second half, with Puncheon driving wide of the right-hand upright from 25 yards three minutes after the restart. Jerome then forced Marshall into a diving save, his low driven effort tipped around the post by the Scottish goalkeeper.
The pressure led to a second Palace goal after 57 minutes as Chamakh doubled the home advantage. Ben Turner's attempted clearance fell for the Moroccan, who fired a right-footed shot into the bottom right-hand corner of the net.
Goal-line technology was put to the test in the 69th minute as Marshall scrambled a Jerome header off the line, with replays suggesting the majority of the ball had crossed the line, although not enough to make it 3-0.
Jerome directed a left-footed strike narrowly wide of the target 10 minutes from time, while his former employers could not recover and left London empty-handed.
Crystal Palace manager Tony Pulis: "Back to back wins at home, it gives everyone a bit more confidence.
"We started very sloppy, but we had two great chances before we scored. We've got some tough games coming up, especially away, so we needed six points from two games.
"I thought [Marouane] Chamakh was great today - he was my man of the match - and Cameron [Jerome] could have scored three or four goals today. To see the effort that they've put in is fantastic. It gives everyone a lift."
Cardiff manager Malky Mackay: "I think first five minutes we have a fantastic chance we should have scored. We don't and they go down the other end and score theirs. You can't allow teams their chances and not take their own.
"I'm not particularly concerned at the lack of goals, if we weren't creating chances I'd be worried. We just need to get back onto it again and be clinical. We scored twice against Manchester United and I know I have lads in the dressing room who will get me goals."
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|26 Dec 2013||v Aston Villa (A)|
|28 Dec 2013||v Man City (A)|
|01 Jan 2014||v Norwich (H)|
|11 Jan 2014||v Spurs (A)|