Crystal Palace Preview

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Crystal Palace:

 

Palace enjoyed a wonderful September during the season which was highlighted after manager Alan Pardew was nominated for the manager of the month award…losing out to Liverpool’s Jurgen Klopp of course! Despite a flourishing September, Crystal Palace haven’t managed to pick up where they left off. Palace have lost both their games in October (0-1 against West Ham and 3-1 against Leicester City) and will want to put that right against Liverpool next Saturday.

Christian Benteke will be up against his former teammates on Saturday evening after being frozen out of Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool team. There is no doubt that Benteke is a very good player; he just never fitted into the style of play that the Liverpool manager wanted. With Liverpool’s set-piece issues at the moment, Benteke will be a major threat to the team and a major asset to Crystal Palace.

 

Will Benteke score against his former side Liverpool on Saturday?

Liverpool:

 

Liverpool are now unbeaten in 10 consecutive games, (WDWWWWWDWW) scoring 26 and only conceding 7; thanks to the newly formed partnership of Dejan Lovren and Joel Matip. Therefore, Crystal Palace will have to be aware of the attacking danger that Liverpool will possess. Jurgen Klopp rested his three key men (Coutinho, Firmino and Mane) last Tuesday night against Tottenham in the EFL cup so that they would be rejuvenated and prepared for the clash with Crystal Palace. Liverpool’s front three are arguably the best attacking trio in the premier league with 11 goals and 5 assists between them. (premier league only)

Can Liverpool’s unbeaten run be extended even further?

 

Why do Liverpool find it difficult to beat Crystal Palace?

 

Crystal Palace could be called Liverpool’s “bogey team” as the Merseysiders have an unimpressive record against them recently. In the last 5 premier league games between the two, the reds have only managed to beat them once. (06th March 2016 – thanks to a Benteke penalty on the 90’+6 minute… awkward?) The big question is – why? And the answer is, I have no idea! Perhaps they got lucky due to curcumstance? Or maybe they were set out well tactically to target Liverpool’s weaknesses. Despite the setback of knowing that Liverpool sometimes struggle against the eagles, lets put that worry behind us and hope that Liverpool can overcome this stumbling block with a win next Saturday at Selhurst Park.

Team news:

Crystal Palace-

Jason Puncheon has suffered a calf strain and his return from injury is unknown. He will be a big miss for Crystal Palace because he usually impresses and is a first team regular when fit.

Papa Souare broke his leg during a horrific and much dramatic car crash. Alan Pardew says that Souare could possibly play again this season, however nothing is certain. Thoughts are with Papa Souare after his terrible accident and we wish him a fast recovery in the near future.

Jonathan Benteke (Christian Benteke’s brother) has a knee injury and isn’t expected back until early February.

Scott Dan suffered a hamstring injury before the last international break, but could be a part of the team that plays against Liverpool. Scott Dan was Palace’s top scorer last season and will be a major miss if he cannot make it in time for the Liverpool clash as his ability from set-pieces is phenomenal.

Liverpool-

Jordan Henderson

 

Henderson will return to the Liverpool team after being absent from the side that beat Tottenham on Tuesday night. Henderson received a 1-match suspension from accumulating too many yellow cards (5) but will now be available again for selection against Crystal Palace on Saturday evening.

Jurgen Klopp nearly has a fully fit squad to choose from with Joe Gomez being the only absentee going into the game this weekend.

Predicted line-ups:

Crystal Palace- (4-3-3)
Mandanda, Ward, Tomkins, Delaney, Kelly, McArthur, Ledley, Cabaye, Townsend, Zaha, Benteke.

Liverpool- (4-3-3)
Karius, Clyne, Matip, Lovren, Milner, Henderson, Wijnaldum, Lallana, Coutinho, Mane, Firmino

Match prediction: Despite Liverpool’s recent form over the last couple of years against Crystal Palace, it will take an extremely excellent performance to beat this charismatic and revitalised Liverpool team. Liverpool’s attack, high line and gegenpressing football (cleverly introduced by Klopp) will be far too much for this Crystal Palace team to cope with. On their day, Liverpool are simply unbeatable and unless the opposition pull something unexpected out of the bag, we can expect a comfortable win. Liverpool should get their second clean sheet of the season if they defend well at set-pieces and Liverpool’s unbeaten run is likely to carry on past Saturday evening. If Liverpool score enough goals, there is a possibility that the reds can go top of the Barclays Premier League which will be the first time since May 2014.

Anfield Edition Predict:

Crystal Palace 0 – 2 Liverpool FC

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