Crystal Palace v Arsenal Predictions, Betting Tips and Previews
October 24, 2018
Selhurst Park - Premier League
Arsenal go for their 11th consecutive win on Sunday, as they travel to London rivals, Crystal Palace, in the Premier League. The home side were unlucky to lose away to Everton, but were punished by two late goals, and will be looking to do better this weekend.
Arsenal put Crystal Palace to the sword last season, as they beat them by four goals to one when at the Emirates. Four different players were on target for the Gunners, with Nacho Monreal, Alex Iwobi, Laurent Koscielny and Alexandre Lacazette all scoring, before Luka Milivojevic added a consolation late on.
Petr Cech and Sokratis are fit again, and should feature this weekend, although Nacho Monreal is likely to miss out. Unai Emery is still without captain, Koscielny, Carl Jenkinson and Ainsley Maintland-Niles, and may suffer from playing mid-week.
Roy Hodgson may be tempted to field a similar side to that which lost last Sunday, with Andros Townsend paired with Wilfred Zaha upfront. With Cristian Benteke and Connor Wickham both out injured, Palace are short of forward options, and will be praying for Zaha to recover his fitness in time for the game.
Crystal Palace v Arsenal Preview, Betting Tips and Predictions
Crystal Palace go into this weekend without a win in four games, and Roy Hodgson will be worried about his side's position in the league table. The situation could not be more different for Unai Emery, as Arsenal's impressive run has seen them shoot up the table to fourth place, joined on points with Chelsea in third.
The Gunners dispatched of Leicester City last week in a style reminiscent of their heyday under Arsene Wenger, with Mesut Ozil in particular standing out with a goal and an assist. The midfielder must be feeling vindicated with his decision to resign from international duty, as he clearly benefited from the break whilst Germany are looking lost.
Following the win, the only issue remaining for Emery is a positive one: Pierre Emerick-Aubamayang has looked unstoppable off the bench, scoring twice on Monday, yet the record signing may not be content with a role as an impact sub. Likewise, Aaron Ramsey, in the heart of a contract dispute is unlikely to get game time over Ozil or the equally impressive Lucas Torreira, meaning that two of Arsenal's stars will have to make do with game-time in the Europa League.
Hodgson has the opposite problem, with a lack of options severely limiting his side's offensive output. Due to Benteke's long-term injury, the manager has experimented with Andros Townsend and Jordan Ayew up-front alongside Wilfred Zaha, but neither have been able to provide the impact of the big Belgian. Whilst both are decent players in their own right, the tricky winger relies on Benteke to disrupt the back-line, creating space, which is not Townsend's style of play.
The one advantage of fielding the two wingers up top is that it allows all 10 of Palace's outfield players to defend and track runs. With the majority of Arsenal's offensive moves originating from one of Ozil or Torreira dropping deep, Hodgson could assign Townsend to put pressure on the latter at all times, disrupting their play.
If Palace do manage to get a result, it would provide a massive confidence boost, and may be a platform on which to build on. However, Arsenal are enjoying their best run in a long time, and are blessed with a number of options if plan A doesn't work: they should have no difficulty making it 11 wins in a row.
Mesut Ozil to score anytime at 15/4
The midfielder may not be a regular goalscorer, but was on fire last week and is very much a confidence player.
Over 2.5 goals scored at 4/6
Despite Palace's scoring struggles, Arsenal should hit enough for both of them.