Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Prediction: Crystal Palace vs Brighton

Verdict: Draw

Best Odds: 9/4

Bookmaker: Bet365

In what could be a lively derby contest on Monday night, Crystal Palace will welcome Brighton to Selhurst Park with M23 bragging rights up for grabs.

Crystal Palace

Starting with the hosts, while Crystal Palace may have only managed to snatch a 0-0 draw off of a rock-bottom Watford on home soil last week, the Eagles are enjoying a three-match unbeaten run and collected seven points out of a possible nine. With their sights firmly set on securing a top-half finish come May, Head Coach Roy Hodgson will know that another victory on Monday would see only his side’s goal difference keeping them outside of the top-six. While Palace may have continued to show some issues in the final third and now recording just a single strike in any of their previous four matches at Selhurst Park, the one-time England boss will be growing more impressed with his side’s performances at the back. The Eagles have recorded three clean sheets on the bounce, their best defensive record since March 2017. Sadly for Palace, there is no doubt that fans around South London will be concerned by their most recent meetings against the Seagulls. During the 2018/2019 campaign, Brighton landed back-to-back wins, including a 2-1 win at Selhurst Park back in March.

Team News

Crystal Palace are without injured full-backs Jeffrey Schlupp, Patrick van Aanholt and Joel Ward.

Central defender Mamadou Sakho is suspended, with Jairo Riedewald expected to start in the Premier League for the first time since February 2018.

Brighton

As for the visitors, while Brighton may have impressed against both Arsenal and Wolves since opening December, Head Coach Graham Potter has seen his side collect just four points out of a possible 15 nearing closer to Christmas. With their 2-1 victory over Arsenal earlier in the month their only Premier League victory since the 2nd of November, the Seagulls are still searching for some defensive stability. Without a clean sheet in any of their last five appearances, they have also shipped at least a pair of goal in four of their last six matchups and have just a single clean sheet away from the Amex this season. If Brighton are to secure a third consecutive victory over their M23 rivals on Monday, Potter will be calling on leading marksman and summer arrival Neal Maupay to lead their charge. The former Brentford striker has found the net in back-to-back matches against Arsenal and Wolves and will be looking to increase that tally at Selhurst Park.

Team News

Brighton midfielder Dale Stephens serves a one-match ban for accumulating five yellow cards.

Aaron Connolly’s fitness is being monitored but Solly March and Jose Izquierdo remain out.

Key Factors to Consider

  • When the two sides met in the 2018/2019 season, Brighton landed back-to-back victories.
  • Striker Neal Maupay has scored in back-to-back matches.
  • Palace have recorded three clean sheets on the bounce for the first time since March 2017.
  • However, the Eagles have scored just one goal in their last four matches at Selhurst Park.
  • Brighton have recorded just one clean sheet on the road this season.

Conclusion

On paper, both Graham Potter and Roy Hodgson should see Monday as a real opportunity for their sides to pick up three points. While Palace might be continuing to show some very eye-catching resolve at the back, the Eagles do have a reputation for their lack of a clinical edge in the final third. Although Brighton might also be dealing with their own headache on the road, we’re backing both teams to eventually settle for a point at Selhurst Park.

Verdict: Draw

Best Odds: 9/4

Bookmaker: Bet365

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Dunstan


Formerly of The Independent, Tom is a freelance football and boxing journalist from Essex, England. Currently working for three online publications, Tom is a graduate of the University of Falmouth and has spent the last two years writing across Australia, New Zealand and Asia. He can be followed at @IamTomDunstan

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