When the Mirror published a story on Saturday revealing that Crystal Palace had access to Aston Villa's lineups well before they were publicly available, I expected it to be the biggest story in all of football. The potential ramifications are absolutely huge, and it could have a massive effect on the relegation race as the season nears its close.
But since I wrote about the story, I have heard almost nothing else about it. Perhaps the Mirror reports were wrong, but coming on the heels of similar accusations from Cardiff, it would seem to be a massive coincidence, and logic says that it's unlikely to have occurred like that.
If Palace actually did spy, cheat, behave in an unsportsmanlike manner, or whatever you want to call it, they could see their season-closing amazing run of form called into question. Pundits have been seriously bandying about Tony Pulis' name as a candidate for manager of the year, and if the results he has obtained with Palace are legitimate, he deserves it.
But in two consecutive matches, his team performed at a level that was above what we've come to expect from Crystal Palace. In two matches there has been evidence of cheating. And that should be enough to call into question the whole second half of Palace's season.
For my own part, I don't really care if Villa get points back, if the match is replayed, or anything like that. It seems as if Villa are safe from relegation and any bonus would simply be icing on the cake. I don't want this to be taken as a whining fan unhappy with his own team's performance. Instead, it's a question of what actually happened. If Palace actually did cheat, that should be brought to light. If they didn't, Pulis and the club should be exonerated. There needs to be some sort of investigation, and there really ought to be some sort of national conversation about this.
Let's not let this issue die. Football fans deserve an answer, and the best way to get one is to keep talking about the topic.