Tottenham makes a short trip to their London rivals Crystal Palace as Mauricio Pochettino’s in-form side look to keep pace with other top sides

Crystal Palace are already in their toughest period of this season as they are set to host Tottenham at Selhurst Park. The Eagles have endured a tough time this season especially in the last 10-games where they have collected only five points.

In their last two games, Roy Hodgson’s men faced Arsenal, holding the Gunners to a 2-2 draw and effectively ending the North London side’s impressive 11-game winning streak. Last weekend Palace lost out to Chelsea courtesy of two goals from the Blues in the last 25 minutes and suffered yet another defeat.

This period of difficult fixtures for Palace is set to continue with the London side set to face Manchester United next, as well as City and Chelsea again in December. Roy Hodgson, however, believes that his side could yet beat the drop and could begin a resurgent atmosphere with a decent enough result against Tottenham, who are looking for a fourth win on the bounce.

Mauricio Pochettino’s men have won their last three games against West Ham in the EFL Cup, Wolves in the League and a late win against PSV in the Champions League in midweek, since losing to Manchester City at Wembley. Against Crystal Palace, Tottenham have an excellent opportunity to keep pace with the top of the table and will be hoping for a win.

That win against Wolves last weekend helped Spurs get back into the top four after leapfrogging Arsenal as only a point separates the two North London sides. Mauricio Pochettino will be hoping his side maintain their current run of form and record yet another win to keep them safe in the fourth position on the table.

Team News & Tactics

Crystal Palace

Roy Hodgson did not have any new injury concerns from his side’s loss to Chelsea last weekend. However, Crystal Palace already have a few key stars on the sidelined, and that situation is not about to change. Among those sidelined are Christian Benteke, Joel Ward, Connor Wickham, and Scott Dann, all of who are expected to be back after the International break.

However, Hodgson will be happy with the form of Andros Townsend who finally found a goal for himself and ended his long run in the league without a goal. Then there is Wilfried Zaha, who has rediscovered his form after a blip at the beginning of the season. Both the forwards are set to be part of Roy Hodgson’s side which is expected to be unchanged from their last game against Chelsea.

Wayne Hennessey is set to continue between the posts. Wan-Bissaka, Tomkins, Sakho and Van Aanholt are all set to form the defence behind a midfield three. Hodgson will yet again rely on Meyer, Zaha and Townsend to deliver the goals, a department which Palace have lacked cutting edge this season.

Probable Lineup (4-4-2)Hennessey; Wan-Bissaka, Tomkins, Sakho, Van Aanholt; McArthur, Kouyate, Milivojevic, Meyer; Zaha, Townsend

Tottenham

Mauricio Pochettino’s side have played five games in the space of the last 13-days, and with the International break approaching, the manager could be set to rest some of his critical stars for the trip to Palace. Dele Alli and Christian Eriksen are among those who are tipped not to feature after only recently returning from the sidelines, and these players will also feature for England and Denmark during the next fortnight.

All could be rested after only returning from a hamstring injury. (Photo courtesy: AFP/Getty)

All could be rested after only returning from a hamstring injury. (Photo courtesy: AFP/Getty)

Victor Wanyama, however, is back in contention to take his place in the starting lineup after his struggles with injuries., and the Kenyan could partner Harry Winks in central midfield, who was the standout player against PSV in midweek. Pochettino will field a strong lineup to secure three points against Palace.

Hugo Lloris is back in contention after being suspended for the midweek Champions League encounter, as could Erik Lamela and Kieran Trippier who were overlooked against PSV. Harry Kane has scored 24 goals in 37 London derbies in the Premier League and will start against Palace in a bid to improve is record only bettered by Arsenal legend Thierry Henry.

Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1)Lloris; Trippier, Sanchez, Alderweireld, Davies; Winks, Wanyama; Lucas, Lamela, Son; Kane

Key Stats

  • Crystal Palace have lost their last six league games against Tottenham.
  • Palace in those six games have only managed to score once against Spurs.
  • Palace, however, have never lost seven games in a row to a single opponent.
  • 25 of the last 26 goals in games between the sides have come in the second half.
  • Harry Kane has 24 goals in 37 London derbies, trailing only Thierry Henry in the process.

Player to Watch

Harry Kane

Man of the hour! Tottenham will be relying on Kane's expertise in front of goal. (Image courtesy: AFP/Getty)

Man of the hour! Tottenham will be relying on Kane’s expertise in front of goal. (Image courtesy: AFP/Getty)

Harry Kane has endured an indifferent season so far even by his standards, with the goals not coming in regular intervals, something the striker is so used to. After bouncing back in recent weeks, Kane is back in shape to perform and lead his side, as earlier in the season some cited burnout as a possible reason for his dip in form.

Against Palace, he has another opportunity to reinvent himself and make a mark with goals. He could also add to his tally of 24 goals in 37 London derbies so far, and also maintain Tottenham’s charge to the top as well as maintain their fourth position on the table. All eyes will be on Kane to lead his side to yet another win in the league.

Prediction

Crystal Palace 1-3 Tottenham

Crystal Palace have not been in their best of form lately and are pencilled in to lose yet another game against a top-six side. The Eagles’ major problems are in front of goal where the strikers have been out of form and Hodgson has seemingly been unable to find a solution to that conundrum. Tottenham will exploit this factor as well as Palace’s defence to score plenty of goals.

However, Tottenham have shown a leakiness in defence, allowing opposing teams to score frequently, although their strength up front will see them through this game and collect all three points against Roy Hodgson’s struggling side.

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