Crystal Palace vs Arsenal Preview

Crystal Palace vs Arsenal Preview

Javier Howell
December 29, 2017

Arsenal played out a 3-3 draw against Liverpool last week.

Roy Hodgson has made the Eagles tough to beat at home and will be eyeing the scalp of Arsenal to pull away from an increasingly congested bottom of the table.

The result leaves Arsene Wenger's men sixth in the league but level on points with fifth-placed Spurs and only a point behind Liverpool in the fourth Champions League spot.

If the Serb allows the former Real Madrid man to dictate the play and orchestrate things for the Gunners, Wenger's men have enough firepower up top to make Palace pay.

After losing their first three home league games of the season without scoring, Crystal Palace are unbeaten in their last six at Selhurst Park (W3 D3 L0) and have scored exactly two goals in each game.

Ozil's goal against Liverpool displayed his unerring ability to ghost from nearly a statuesque start into a one on one position, a trait which can very easily throw off a man marker; the Eagles' number four needs to concentrate from the first whistle to the last.

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This fixture last season provided Palace's most memorable victory of the campaign as a Wilfried Zaha-inspired performance earned Sam Allardyce's side a 3-0 success.

Mamadou Sakho misses the clash with a calf strain and Joel Ward is still struggling with a groin problem.

Hodgson will be further boosted by the return of striker Christian Benteke, who served his one-match suspension last time out against Swansea. The Bosnian worldwide last started a Premier League clash against Southampton on December 10th.

Nacho Monreal is a doubt for the Gunners, with the Spanish defender picking up an ankle injury in the match against Liverpool.

With Arsene Wenger set to take charge of his 810th Premier League game, equalling Sir Alex Ferguson's record, the French boss will be desperate to improve on their form on the road.

Arsenal have conceded five times in their last two Premier League games to raise questions about Wenger's defence. Although Aaron Ramsey has begun training again, the Welsh global is still not match fit as he continues rehabilitation on a hamstring injury.