Saturday 21st January 2016 Kickoff: 1500hrs Crystal Palace v Everton Football – England – Premier League Many expected the arrival of Sam Allardyce at Selhurst Park would see an immediate upturn in fortunes for Crystal Palace but the former England manager is yet to win a game in the league and his team are lurking perilously close to the foot of the table. Palace sit one place outside the relegation zone and are only above Hull City on goal difference alone, albeit a sizeable gap of 15 goals. That will be little comfort to Allardyce, however, who prides himself on having never been relegated from the top flight. His ill-fated spell with England should not detract from the fact he is a very capable of turning struggling teams around but there has been little to no sign of improvement just yet. The club have not won in the league since the beginning of December and have amassed just 16 points from their 21 games. A small crumb of comfort for the Eagles was the 2-1 win over Bolton in the FA Cup during the week but Allardyce is the first to admit that the league is the overwhelming priority for the club and they have to start picking up points, starting on Saturday.
It never ceases to amaze me just how much the mood surrounding a football club can change over the course of a week. Following Everton’s home loss to Leicester in the FA Cup a fortnight ago there appeared to be little positivity and many supporters felt their season was virtually over. Fast forward eight days and a thumping 4-0 win at home to Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City has got the Toffees back in a much better frame of mind for the second half of the campaign. The performance was easily the best of the season for Everton and it was topped off with two goals from a couple of their young starlets as Tom Davies and Ademola Lookman getting their first for the club. Whilst it us just one win, it was a continuation of what has been a good run of form in the league of late. Four wins in their last six games means they have put some distance between themselves and West Brom and allows them to at least think about challenging the teams above them. However, the win over City will mean very little if they are unable to back it up by getting a result against Palace.
Crystal Palace v Everton Betting Tips
It should not be underestimated how much trouble Palace are in and it’s far too simplistic to think that because they appointed Allardyce they will automatically be safe come the end of the season. Defensively they are still conceding too many goals and three goals scored in their last five league games tells its own story. Everton, on the other hand, have not been on as good a run as this since the first couple of months and will be looking to take advantage of their opponents struggles.
Both teams have been hampered with the African Cup of Nations losing key players to that tournament but Everton appear to have the more robust squad to deal with that. Ronald Koeman was delighted with his side’s performance last week whilst Allardyce was seething with how they defended in the second half loss to West Ham. It’s often said that a team’s home form is the most important factor in battling to stay up and Palace’s has been shocking of late. With an inform Everton team coming to town I do not envisage that changing this weekend and fancy the visitors to inflict more misery on Allardyce and his players.