The Premier League weekend concludes with a London derby on Monday night when Crystal Palace will look to pick up where they left off prior to the international break when they host top four hopefuls Arsenal at Selhurst Park.
A place in the top half of the table will be the reward for the home side if they can win here while the visitors will move back into fourth if they can avoid defeat and they would have games in hand on their rivals too.
Where to watch
The match will be shown as part of the Monday Night Football programme on Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Premier League. The show begins at 7pm with kick off at Selhurst Park at 8pm.
These are good times to be a Crystal Palace supporter. You have a young, vibrant, forward thinking team to support, one which will compete in an FA Cup semi-final in a couple of weeks and which could well end the season in the top half of the Premier League at the end of this term. For all Palace achieved under Roy Hodgson, you sense they are ready to go to the next level under Patrick Vieira and the good thing is they haven’t hit their ceiling yet by any stretch of the imagination.
Palace go into this match having lost just one of their last seven in the Premier League and they have twice progressed in the FA Cup in that time so they are adding consistent results to their game and are only getting better. This is a much more athletic side than previous versions of a Crystal Palace team so they get around the pitch better and as a result of that they can press opposition high up. They showed in holding Manchester City in their last Premier League game that they can mix it with the best tactically.
There are clear signs of improvement within Arsenal under Mikel Arteta too. I don’t think they are anywhere near where they were under Arsene Wenger but they might be the best Arsenal side since he departed. They are not anywhere close to being title challengers or anything like that so in that regard there is still a lot of work to do but there is every chance that they are going to go from not being in Europe at all this season to qualifying for the Champions League.
They need to make sure they finish the season well in order for that to happen but they have a stability about them at the back at the minute and although their attacking core is a young one they have plenty of dynamism. There is an argument that they lack a top class focal point and it might be that when they go up against the very good sides in the division that is why they come up short but their record against the rest this term is very encouraging but that will be tested here.
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Crystal Palace have doubts over the availability of Wilfried Zaha and Michael Olise ahead of this match. The former missed the friendly with England last week but the latter could yet be involved. James McArthur and Nathan Ferguson are also being monitored.
Arsenal are expected to be without goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale once again but even though he pulled out of England duty with an illness, Bukayo Saka is fit and ready to feature. Takehiro Tomiyasu could also return.
This is one of those matches where I think both teams will get to play the way they like to. Crystal Palace will be able to dominate position with Arsenal sitting deep and looking to play on the counterattack and given that both are in decent form that should make for an interesting match. I always think these night games lead to more positive football anyway as there is a buzz in the atmosphere and things like that.
These two have already played out one entertaining match this season when they drew 2-2 at the Emirates Stadium and while I’m not convinced there will be four goals here given that we are at the business part of the season now, I see no reason why both teams can’t find the net considering that neither will have to adapt from their natural style. You can get just under even money on both sides finding the back of the net and that is the punt I like for this one.
Back Both teams to score for a 3/10 stake at 1.95 with Bet365