Crystal Palace v Southampton Predictions, Betting Tips and Previews
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Selhurst Park - Premier League
Free-falling Crystal Palace host Southampton on Saturday, desperate to reverse their nightmare start to the Premier League, having sacked Frank de Boer.
Meetings between these two sides give little away in terms of how Saturday's game will go, with both having an even hand in recent results. In the last four games in the Premier League, Southampton have beaten Palace twice and the eagles have beaten the South Coast club twice.
Across the four games there has been a total of 13 goals scored, a significant contrast to the goal shy start to this season enjoyed by both clubs so far.
Whoever is in charge at Palace by the time Southampton visit - expected to be Roy Hodgson but not yet confirmed - has a few injury concerns to consider.
The man in the dugout will be hoping that French international Yohan Cabaye can return to boost the struggling south Londoners, and he will face a late fitness test on an ankle injury ahead of Southampton's visit.
Defender Jairo Reidewald will also be assessed later this week, as he continues his recovery from a groin strain.
Fellow defender James Tomkins and on loan Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek have both return to training, from groin injuries, but with both still short of match fitness they are unlikely to be risked.
The same is true of full back Papa Souare, who is back in training following a broken leg, but is still some way off being fully match fit.
Wilf Zaha, Connor Wickham and Bakary Sako remain long term injury absentees from De Boer's side.
Southampton boss Mauricio Pellegrino only has one injury concern ahead of this one, and that is on club captain Virgil Van Dijk, who is yet to play in the Premier League this season.
The Dutch international was dogged by a succession of minor injuries that hampered his pre season preparations, along with a sustained transfer saga with Liverpool distracting him from his role with the Saints.
Southampton have not been in the greatest defensive form so far in the Premier League this season, alongside an underwhelming points haul, conceding four goals in four games, but Van Dijk's fitness levels will be a concern with starting him.
Crystal Palace v Southampton Preview and Predictions
Palace's poor form is well documented so far in 2017-18, with four straight losses, to Huddersfield, Liverpool, Swansea City and Burnley respectively, and they desperately need to get some points on the board.
An extension of this run could lead to them being irreversibly placed into the relegation zone, and Hodgson - or whoever - given an uphill task, even this early in the season.
Southampton have not been massively better in recent weeks, recording just one win this season - away at fellow strugglers West Ham - and they have racked up goal less draws against Swansea and Huddersfield.
All signs point to a low key and low scoring affair at Selhurst Park, with an under 2.5 goals bet priced at 4/6.
Given Southampton's tendency for draws so far this season, and Palace's desperation for points of any description to get their season on the road, a draw looks to be a fairly low risk option in this one, priced at 9/4.
A 1-1 draw at 11/2
Both sides are in need of points, but neither have the confidence or capability at the moment to cause a great deal of goal scoring concern for each other. Despite possessing forward of goal scoring ability, these two sides have arguably the lowest in the Premier League right now and that should dampen the flames for this one.
Christian Benteke to score first at 22/5
Belgian international Benteke has looked to Palace's most likely goal threat this season, despite the club failing to register a goal in the Premier League so far. James McArthur's double in the EFL Cup has been the only goal action for Palace fans to celebrate this season, but he may not start at the weekend.
Benteke consistently carries an aerial threat against any team, and without Van Dijk at the back for Southampton, they may find it very difficult against the former Liverpool man.
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