Palmer scores in PPG Canalside win
- Town plays Girona behind closed doors
- Kasey Palmer goal settles the game
- Full 90 minutes for majority of team
A first-half goal from the impressive Kasey Palmer gave a Town XI the win in a behind-closed-doors pre-season friendly against La Liga new boys Girona FC at PPG Canalside on Saturday morning.
Many of Town’s players got their first full 90 minutes under their belts against the Spanish side, with goal-scorer Palmer looking strong in his planned hour as he continues his recovery from the severe hamstring injury he sustained last season.
Town defended very well as a unit throughout and the quartet of Rajiv van La Parra, Laurent Depoitre and Elias Kachunga and Palmer in particular carried a threat as Town transitioned quickly.
Palmer had the first effort of the game just before the quarter-hour mark, having a close-range snapshot blocked by a defender after Martin Cranie won a corner at the back post.
Kachunga’s direct running was always a threat to the Catalonian side and he setup Depoitre for an acrobatic volley five minutes later, but the shot was well blocked again.
In sunny conditions, the visitors enjoyed a couple of efforts; stand-in right back Harry Bunn cleared one dangerous cross by covering well before a player headed a free kick over the bar.
The goal came in the 34th minute and was courtesy of a swift counter-attack. Town defended a free-kick into the area well, with Depoitre finding left back Regan Booty with a header out wide. Booty quickly released Kachunga down the left channel and he drove at the defence before pulling the ball back to Palmer, who sent a first-time half volley past the goalkeeper from 15 yards.
Palmer stayed lively after the opener, firing a free kick over the bar soon after.
There was still time for another good Town chance, with another Kachunga run and cross ending with van La Parra firing well over.
Town continued to impress in the second 45 minutes, with Depoitre firing over after Dean Whithead forced the opposition into an error inside their own half.
Joel Coleman was kept busy at the other end, expertly commanding his box with a series of impressive catches.
Girona had a couple of chances towards the end of the game, but couldn’t hit the target. Instead Kachunga went close, seeing his late shot blocked by a defender.
Town’s team (4-2-3-1)
Joel Coleman; Regan Booty, Martin Cranie, Mark Hudson, Harry Bunn; Danny Williams, Dean Whitehead (c); Rajiv van La Parra, Kasey Palmer (Jack Payne, 60’), Elias Kachunga; Laurent Depoitre
Ryan Schofield, Rarmani Edmonds-Green, Danny Kane, Jordan Williams, Lewis O’Brien, Sean Scannell