Crystal Palace’s players dedicated Saturday’s maiden Championship victory of the season to the club’s loyal fans, according to boss Dougie Freedman.
The Eagles lost 4-1 at Preston in the League Cup last week to cap a horror start to the season that left Freedman coming under fire from sections of the Palace support.
But after watching Glenn Murray’s brace secure a 2-1 win over Sheffield Wednesday that lifted the Eagles off the foot of the table, the Scotsman insisted he was happy rather than relieved at the final whistle.
Freedman said: “I’m not relieved, I’m happy for the Crystal Palace fans who have stuck with us for the past three or four games when we’ve been disappointed by the results.
“But that was a display of character and determination to repay the fans. We all make mistakes, we all lose a few games, but the Crystal Palace fans know what it is all about.
“When a few results don’t go your way, there are always a few experts out there telling you what you’re doing wrong.
“We were low on confidence but we got a win against a side who won promotion last year, were unbeaten in 18 games and had the momentum with them playing against a side bottom of the league who everyone had written off.
“And that just shows you what sort of character I’ve got in my team.
“I was told by one of the players this win was for the fans because I think they were a little bit humbled in the dressing room on Tuesday night when we got beaten and the fans were still singing and supporting us.”
Freedman is confident the Owls victory could prove to be a springboard for the rest of the season now he has managed to bring a couple of new faces into his squad.
The Selhurst Park boss said: “I believe this team will get better and stronger, but right now they have showed that they had the character to dig in and win the game.
“We’ve brought a few new faces in over the past few weeks who are not in a lot of other managers’ thoughts and who are maybe a little rusty but there was a lot of character in that team throughout the 90 minutes.
“We just feel as though if we can give a little bit of love and support to certain players then we will be capable of winning games in this division.”
Palace are back in action on September 14 when they travel to Charlton Athletic.