Premier League: Arsenal v Crystal Palace

Since losing 4-1 to Manchester City before Christmas, Arsenal have won four from four in all competitions, and Mikel Arteta seems to have found a system which has started to produce results for the FA Cup holders.

A back four system has resulted in wins over Chelsea, Brighton, West Brom and Newcastle, with Emile Smith Rowe and Kieran Tierney the standout players in Arsenal’s resurgence. Both should start when Crystal Palace make the trip across London, with the Gunners hoping to move into the top half with a victory.

Speaking of the South London side, Roy Hodgson’s side have won only one of their last six games, beating bottom side Sheffield United in their last Premier League game, before exiting the FA Cup at the hands of Wolves last weekend.

Wilfried Zaha was afforded a partial rest in the defeat, playing only the last 20 minutes – a decision that may well have been influenced by this game. The winger will be central to the Eagles’ chances of getting anything against an Arsenal defence that has kept three consecutive clean sheets.

Palace also have injury worries elsewhere in their squad, with Mamadou Sakho, Martin Kelly, Jeffrey Schlupp, Connor Wickham, Wayne Hennessey and Nathan Ferguson all missing through various ailments.

There’s good news in the shape of Gary Cahill though, as the former Chelsea defender should return after a thigh injury, and Scott Dann could also come back into the squad after a similar issue.

As for Arsenal, Gabriel Martinelli is expected to miss out after turning his ankle in the warm-up of the FA Cup win over Newcastle, despite training in the week, but Thomas Partey and Gabriel should both return to the squad after injuries. Rob Holding, who signed a new contract this week, is available to deputise should the Brazilian defender not make the starting XI.

Arsenal take on Crystal Palace on Thursday, January 14th. Kick-off is at 8pm.

Wolves cruise past Crystal Palace into the FA Cup Fourth Round

Nuno Santo’s side bossed things right from kick off in this one with Fabio Silva wasting a brilliant chance to head home before Traore lashed wide.

But the Spaniard wasn’t to be denied second time around as he cut inside Eberechi Eze and crashed one past Jack Butland.

Palace failed to muster up a response after the break as Butland worked overtime to keep them in it.

The England international reminded Roy Hodgson of what he can do with superb stops from Leander Dendoncker and Pedro Neto.

But in the end a limp Palace attack never troubled Santo’s back line as they bowed out in Round Three.

Full Time at Molineux it’s Wolves 1 Crystal Palace 0

Crystal Palace deepen Sheffield United’s misery with 2-0 win

Chris Wilder’s side remain on the brink of a record points low come the end of season as Palace ended a five-game Premier League losing streak.

The hosts were clearly the sharper of the two sides early on as Roy Hodgson’s hosts deservedly edged in front on five minutes.

Christian Benteke’s deflected shot ricocheted around the United box and Jeff Schlupp coolly waited for his chance to tuck past Aaron Ramsdale.

That goal failed to spark either side into life before the break with substitute Eberechi Eze waiting until first half added time to make it 2-0.

The former QPR star has enjoyed an eye-catching start at Palace and he dipped in and out of Blades tackles from halfway before bending home past Ramsdale.

Wilder threw on Lys Mousset and Rhian Brewster for the final half hour to inject some urgency into things, but they could do nothing as the Blades took another step inevitable step closer to the drop.

Full Time at Selhurst Park it’s Crystal Palace 2 Sheffield United 0

Premier League Preview: Crystal Palace v Sheffield United

The sides share a very even record in the Premier League head-to-head, with 2 wins apiece.

Last season though it was The Blades who came out on top, completing a league double over the Eagles, winning both games 1-0.

There are no fresh injury concerns for Roy Hodgson’s side after their 1-1 draw with Leicester in midweek.

Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder though is keeping his fingers crossed for the results from the latest round of coronavirus testing.

United’s clash with Burnley went ahead on Tuesday despite two players and several members of staff testing positive for Covid-19.

The club’s players underwent more testing on Thursday and, although no-one else has shown symptoms, Wilder admitted he would not be surprised if Saturday’s match against Crystal Palace is not able to go ahead.

If it does, the game at Selhurst Park on Saturday is the Premier League’s only 3 o’clock kick off.

Premier League Preview: Crystal Palace v Leicester City

Brendan Rodgers’ side were held to a 2-2 Boxing Day draw with Manchester United at the King Power and three points in this would take them back to second.

Despite such a hectic run of recent matches, Rodgers is expected to stick with the same starting team with Ayoze Perez the only likely change.

As for Palace, Roy Hodgson will be worried by his team’s recent dip in form, with just one win in five heading into this.

The former England coach has no new updates on the injury front with Gary Cahill, Mamadou Sakho and Connor Wickham still out.

But James McCarthy and Andros Townsend could return to the side as Hodgson looks to turn their fortunes around.

And Kick Off in this one is set for 3pm on December 28th at Selhurst Park.

Ten-man Aston Villa prove too strong for Crystal Palace

Palace nearly made the perfect start when Wilfried Zaha was played clean through, catching Tyrone Mings on his heels, but Villa goalkeeper Emi Martinez was equal to the attempt.

The hosts then took the lead only five minutes in, when Bertrand Traore played in Ollie Watkins down the right and was on hand to thump the ball into the net after Vicente Guaita parried Watkins’ shot into the middle of the box.

Villa were then, however, reduced to 10-men when Mings stuck out an arm to block Zaha and was shown a second yellow on the stroke of half time.

Despite their numerical disadvantage, Villa continued to enjoy the better of the game in the second half.

And the second goal that arrived in the 66th minute was no more than they deserved. Palace failed to defend an El Ghazi free-kick, Watkins headed against the crossbar and Hause followed up to score his second Premier League goal for Villa.

With Palace forced to commit more men forward, Villa looked even more dangerous, and, after Watkins saw a shot blocked, he teed-up El Ghazi for his fourth goal in four games.

The result lifted Villa into the Premier League’s top six – for a few hours at least – while Palace have now conceded 10 goals in two matches after last weekend’s hammering by Liverpool.

Premier League Preview: Aston Villa v Crystal Palace

The Villains have looked brilliant on the road in recent weeks with wins over Leicester, Arsenal, Wolves and West Brom.

But at home they have struggled and Smith will need to change that…….and quick.

His team picked up no casualties in their win over the Baggies last time out and he could name an unchanged line up with Ross Barkley and Ezri Konsa back on the bench.

For Palace, things can’t really get much worse after they were whacked 7-0 by Liverpool last weekend and Roy Hodgson looks certain to change things up.

Christian Benteke is back in the squad after a one game ban with James Tomkins, Michy Batshuayi and James McCarthy all pushing for a starting spot

And Kick Off is set for a 3pm start on Boxing Day at Villa Park

Liverpool HAMMER Crystal Palace 7-0 at Selhurst Park

Two goals each for Roberto Firmino and Mo Salah powered the Reds to their best ever win in the Premier League, on a dominant day at Selhurst Park.

Jurgen Klopp’s team were on top form right from the off in this one as forgotten man Takumi Minamino slotted home Sadio Mane’s pass after just three minutes.

But despite taking their foot off the gas after that, the visitors eventually found themselves three up at the break, as Mane powered home Firmino’s pass and the Brazilian calmly poked home Andy Robertson’s delivery.

Palace did look to try and fight from some pride after the restart, but with Liverpool in this type of form there was simply no answer from Roy Hodgson’s side.

Skipper Jordan Henderson cushioned home his first of the season from Trent Alexander Arnold’s pass
before the brilliant Firmino made it five just after the hour.

Klopp threw on Salah to give Palace a few more nightmares in the last 30 and the Egyptian’s pass was cleverly dinked home by Firmino.

And with Mane and Firmino both enjoying brilliant afternoons in South London, Salah was not to be left out in final ten minutes.

Liverpool’s top scorer this season stayed alive in the box to nod home Joel Matip’s knockdown before he curled home the goal of the day to make it a magnificent seven for Klopp.

Full Time at Selhurst Park it’s Crystal Palace 0 Liverpool 7

Crystal Palace clinch late 1-1 Premier League draw with Tottenham

Despite leading for the majority of the game in South London, thanks to Harry Kane’s early goal, they were punished late on as Jeff Schlupp snatched a point for Palace.

Both teams looked bright and breezy in the early stages as Hugo Lloris denied Wilf Zaha and Vicente Guaita sprang into to life to save from Tanguy Ndombele.

But with no real early pattern forming in the opening half hour a thunderbolt from Kane brought the contest into life.

Son slipped him into space around 30 yards from goal and with Guaita slightly out of position Kane opened up his body and smashed one beyond him.

That goal allowed Spurs’ first half confidence to soar before the break with Guaita called into action to make a double stop from Steven Bergwijn and Ndombele.

Tottenham set their stall out to preserve that one goal advantage after the break as Palace battled hard to squeeze out a breakthrough.

Roy Hodgson’s team did look to up the tempo late on as Lloris denied Zaha and Christian Benteke, before Schlupp eventually forced home that all important equaliser.

Eberechi Eze’s whipped free kick was fumbled by the normally unflappable Lloris and Schlupp prodded into the empty net.

Spurs did almost flip the game back on its head in added time but Guaita came to Palace’s rescue with a cat like stop from Kane.

Full Time at Selhurst Park it’s Crystal Palace 1 Tottenham 1

Premier League Preview: Crystal Palace v Tottenham

Mourinho is doing everything in his power to dampen down talk of a title push but his side have looked very slick in recent weeks.

He opted to change his full starting Xi for the Europa League win over Royal Antwerp in midweek and he will recall all his big hitters to face Palace.

Serge Aurier will undergo a late fitness check on a groin issue but if the Ivorian does miss out, Matt Doherty will return to the starting team.

For Palace, Roy Hodgson’s team will be full of confidence after putting five past West Brom last weekend.

And being the king of consistency that he is, the former England could name an unchanged starting line up with Cheikhou Kouyate continuing to fil in at centre back.

Kick Off is 2.15pm tomorrow at Selhurst Park

Burnley 1-0 Crystal Palace: Turf Moor a happy place again as Clarets grab first win of Premier League season

The Eagles’ performance on the night suggested they were a side that lacked a cutting edge in Wilfried Zaha’s absence.

Palace manager Roy Hodgson revealed Zaha had been ruled out of the Turf Moor trip after testing positive for coronavirus and although they created enough chances to claim a point, it was clear they missed their talisman.

The decisive moment of the game came as early as the eighth minute when Wood found the back of the net after being put through by strike partner Jay Rodriguez, making his first league start in two months, as the Clarets won 1-0.

Burnley came into this fixture as the division’s lowest scorers and this was only their fourth goal in eight matches – and first in five games – but it was enough to move them out of the relegation zone.

Johann Berg Gudmundsson clattered the crossbar on his 100th Premier League appearance, which meant Burnley were hanging on as full-time approached.

But Nick Pope saved brilliantly from Michy Batshuayi – Zaha’s replacement – and substitute Christian Benteke in the second half to ensure the Clarets claimed their first league win since July 18.

Pope was called into action inside the first 90 seconds, his palms stung by Nathaniel Clyne’s effort from distance but Burnley then ended their long goalless stretch, scoring at home for the first time in the league this season.

Gudmundsson directed a hopeful ball towards the area but off-balance Palace defender Cheikhou Kouyate headed into the path of Rodriguez, whose clever backheel allowed Wood to steal in and slot home.

Palace responded well to going behind with Batshuayi making life difficult for the hosts, only just failing to get a final touch when the ball was rolled along the six-yard area by James McArthur.

After Burnley’s defenders sat back Batshuayi’s shot only just missed Pope’s right hand post while the goalkeeper had to be alert as he tipped over a curling and dipping effort from distance from Andros Townsend.

Pope’s opposite number Vicente Guaita was perhaps a touch fortunate a mistimed punch from an innocuous Dwight McNeil corner did not end up in the back of the net as the Clarets ended the half firmly on top.

Burnley boss Sean Dyche was left fuming on the touchline after a clumsy challenge by Kouyate prevented Rodriguez going clean through and went unpunished, but replays showed the coming together took place just outside the area.

It was nevertheless an encouraging start to the second half for Burnley and Gudmundsson should have doubled their lead when McNeil picked out his team-mate in plenty of space but a first-time effort cannoned back off the crossbar.

They were given a major let-off on the hour as an errant McNeil backpass put Batshuayi one-on-one with Pope, who was off his line quickly and was helped by the on-loan Chelsea striker scuffing his shot straight at him.

It was becoming an end-to-end affair and Guaita did brilliantly to palm away a Wood header after Kouyate had been unable to intercept an Ashley Westwood dink into the area.

As the game headed into added-on time, Benteke was denied from point-blank range by a left arm from a spread-eagled Pope and the Palace substitute then spurned another opportunity after taking a bad touch when put through.

That allowed James Tarkowski to nip in and snuff out the danger, enabling Burnley to celebrate an overdue victory.

Premier League Preview: Burnley v Crystal Palace

Sean Dyche’s side are without a Premier League win so far, but two draws from their last four games gives hope a result in this one.

Dyche does have some key names coming back from injury, with Jack Cork, Phil Bardsley and Charlie Taylor all back fit.

Cork is likely to be the only change for the Clarets however, with Robbie Brady set to drop out after a busy week away with Ireland.

Palace boss Roy Hodgson is also set for limited changes, after the Eagles impressed with a 4-1 win over Leeds last time out.

Eberechi Eze has passed a fitness test and should start again, with Gary Cahill and James McCarthy also pushing for a starting return in Lancashire.

And it’s a 5.30pm kick off at Turf Moor on Monday night.