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Potter admits Silva could have seen red against Crystal Palace

Conor Gallagher came off the bench to net a brilliant late winner for the Blues, giving them a 2-1 win in Potter’s first Premier League match in charge of the club.

It came after Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang had equalised before half-time following Odsonne Edouard’s opener, but in between those goals there was a controversial incident that went the way of Chelsea.

Thiago Silva was caught on the ball and went to ground, deliberately handling the ball to stop Jordan Ayew breaking away clean through on goal. The centre-back was shown a yellow card and although a VAR review followed, no further punishment came.

Palace boss Patrick Vieira was shown a yellow card himself for his fury at the decision, not helped when Silva then played a role in Aubameyang’s goal, and Potter accepted after the match that the call could have gone against his side.

“I thought it was touch and go,” Potter told BBC Sport.

“The fact he was quite far from the goal saved him and it could’ve gone the other way. It’s a close one, I can understand Patrick’s frustration. It’s a 50-50 one.”

The match looked set to be drifting towards a draw for much of the second-half, before Gallagher marked his return to Selhurst Park in style with a curling strike from distance.

Ahead of a hectic run of fixtures between now and the break in domestic football for the World Cup, Potter was thrilled to get off the mark as Chelsea boss.

“We’re delighted with the result,” Potter said. “It’s a tough place to come. I thought we started quite well but conceded from the first action into the box.

“Credit to the boys, they recovered well and did not let their heads go down. It was nice to get an equaliser and get back in the game.

“We had to survive moments as they are a good side with dangerous players. To be a goal down and come away with three points is fantastic so credit to the players.

“There’s character, that’s for sure. They could’ve felt sorry for themselves after conceding the goal but the players stood up all the way through.

“There was a collective spirit among the players. We are delighted with the three points.”

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