Crystal Palace did not earn the result it wanted on Boxing Day against London rivals Fulham, but American defender Chris Richards will have some added confidence following his return to action.
Richards made his first appearance since August 27 on Monday despite Crystal Palace’s 3-0 London Derby defeat to Fulham at Selhurst Park. The 22-year-old made the move to England on a permanent transfer from Bayern Munich this past summer and had totaled five appearances for Crystal Palace before a lengthy spell on the sidelines.
Richards played the final 30 minutes for Crystal Palace, which finished the match with nine men due to red cards to Tyrick Mitchell and James Tomkins. It was the centerback’s third appearance in which he registered 30 minutes or more for the club.
“It was an up-and-down battle, it was an injury that I have dealt with a lot this season so I was looking forward to having that behind me,” Richards said in a club interview postmatch. “Unfortunately it happened during the time of the World Cup so I knew I wouldn’t be able to perform there. It was tough missing all of the games, but I am hoping to have a strong end to the year and hopefully not have any games like this today [in terms of the result].”
Richards made four clearances in his substitute appearance, while also making four passes.
Crystal Palace next travels to Bournemouth on New Years Eve before hosting Tottenham on Jan. 4. Richards could also make his first FA Cup start as the Eagles host Southampton on Jan. 7.
Good to see he got some minutes and is healthy. Keep working hard.