Saturday, June 23, 2018

Can Sam Allardyce’s Crystal Palace pull off another scalp against Manchester City this weekend?

Crippy Cooke in Editorial, English Premier League 4 May 2017


Crystal Palace manager Sam Allardyce has led the side to wins over Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool in recent weeks.

Crystal Palace travel to the Etihad Stadium to face Manchester City in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon, in a game that may not go the way of the favourites.

Top-four chasing Manchester City are expected to win against relegation-threatened Crystal Palace, but the visitors’ wins over top Premier League sides coupled with the inconsistent home form of City could see a different outcome.

Manchester City can’t build up any momentum

Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City side are currently fourth in the Premier League table with 66 points from 34 games this season, having won just two of their last eight outings. At home, the Sky Blues have struggled too, winning only two of their previous half a dozen games at the Etihad which will give travel-happy Palace real confidence of getting a result.

City have managed only two home wins in the Premier League since January 2, and have kept just one clean sheet the Etihad Stadium since December 2016. The Citizens can’t build up any momentum, and it’s worth noting the hosts have fallen short in two of their last three meetings with bottom-half opposition. A Crystal Palace side who can’t stop winning on the road should be licking their lips.

Giant-killers Crystal Palace will have a plan to thwart City

Sam Allardyce’s Crystal Palace side find themselves 16th in the division with 38 points from 35 games, coming off the back of two wins, one draw and two defeats from their last five. The Eagles have been outstanding on the road of late, boasting four wins from their previous half a dozen away games in the league, and Palace’s recent wins over Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool should strike some fear in Manchester City.

Allardyce will look to capitalise on the opposition’s shortcomings, ensuring a turnover in possession leads to a swift counter-attack to catch City cold at the back, and with pace and power on the flanks Palace have the tools to dispose of the top-four chasers. It’s unlikely Palace will be drawn into playing through the midfield given the world-class individuals City boast, but will instead look to use Christian Benteke as a target man to win his duels and bring the pacey forwards around him into play.

Crystal Palace are 2/1 to win or draw against Manchester City in Saturday afternoon’s Premier League clash. Can Sam Allardyce pull off another giant-killing to boost his side’s hopes of survival?


Crippy Cooke

Crippy Cooke has somehow written for the Telegraph, Independent, Huffington Post, Zoo Magazine, Daily Mail, ITV Football, MSN Sport, Yahoo Sport, London24 and Bleacher Report among others, despite knowing less about football than your average Fan TV member . The weekly accumulator enthusiast is saving up his winnings to pay for a much-needed hair transplant but grows more on his chin than his head. He lives and breathes football and somehow makes a living writing from it.



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