How quickly things can change when it comes to Coventry City. Only two months ago they heralded the dawn of a new era as they crushed Queens Park Rangers in the first match at the Ricoh Arena.
It begged the question, could the Sky Blues be a dark horse to sneak into a play-off place? Under the guidance of Micky Adams, whose teams are always supposed to be hard to beat, and in magnificent, salubrious new surroundings it didn't seem an all too ridiculous proposition.
But eight weeks on and after a shattering defeat in front of their biggest crowd of the season, Coventry look destined for another battle against relegation to League One.
Not only that, but the darlings of the last ever season at Highfield Road are now seen as two of the major culprits for paving the way for the rocky road ahead at the Ricoh.
Skipper Stephen Hughes and local hero Gary McSheffrey were given lucrative contracts by Coventry's standards to keep them at the club in the summer, but there is a sense that the supporters - and the manager - have turned on them.
Hughes was substituted at half-time for non-contract midfielder Youssef Sofiane while McSheffrey was once again well below his best. The suggestion is, that with threeyear deals, their hunger has been somewhat abated.
And that's just one worry for Adams, who claims his side are suffering from a crisis of confidence.
His team are looking anything but hard to beat having conceded seven goals in the last two matches and although Palace manager Iain Dowie wouldn't admit it, his side will be lucky to claim a more comfortable victory this season.
The Eagles were on top from the first whistle as Adams' 4-3-3 tactics appeared to play straight into the hands of the visitors. It allowed their wingers to run at City's full backs who were left exposed without a wide man of their own to protect them.
Palace took the lead after 14 minutes as centre-back Darren Ward turned and shot home from 12 yards after Coventry failed to clear a corner.
They should have extended their advantage but Dougie Freedman was denied by a great tackle from Richard Shaw before Stephen Bywater kept out Jobi McAnuff.
Lilian Nalis, on-loan from Sheffield United, was Coventry's most creative player on his debut while Marcus Hall offered the biggest attacking threat from left-back but their were very few positives.
City clawed a goal back before the break when centreback Matt Heath powered in Hughes' corner but parity was restored for just a matter of seconds.
Immediately Crystal Palace regained the lead as former Birmingham striker Clinton Morrison notched his fifth goal of the season as he was left unmarked from Danny Butterfield's cross.
Sofiane came on for the lacklustre Hughes and the youngster looked a little off the pace but showed plenty of promise on the ball.
The result was put beyond all doubt when Ben Watson poked home a cross from McAnuff after the visitors had put together the best move of the match.
Coventry substitute Claus Jorgensen did nothing to improve the mood of his manager as he was sent off for using abusive language to referee Alan Wiley with just eight minutes to go.
That makes him the second City player this season to see red for swearing while defender Robert Page missed this game because of a threegame ban for throwing a punch against Watford. It all suggests a distinct lack of discipline in the Sky Blues' camp.
"The sending-off was totally my responsibility," said Jorgensen. "I think it was very, very harsh but if I hadn't been speaking to the referee than I would not have been dismissed."
Palace are easily the best team to visit the Ricoh Arena this season and their fourth highlighted the gulf between their squad and Coventry's.
England striker Andy Johnson had come off the bench to replace Republic of Ireland forward Clinton Morrison, while Jon Macken, who once cost Manchester City £ 5 million, was on for Freedman.
Johnson broke the offside trap in injury time but saw his shot saved by Bywater before Macken finished into the empty net. As Adams put it: "They took off a £3 million striker for a player worth £9 million. Our new boys did well, but a non-contract player and a guy on-loan from Sheffield United will not take us where Crystal Palace are."