Competition: Premier League – Crystal Palace vs. West Bromwich Albion
Venue: Selhurst Park – Saturday, April 18th – 15:00 BST (10:00 ET)
Match Odds: Crystal Palace 10/11 – Draw 12/5 – West Brom 3/1
Crystal Palace are in a terrific run of form, with four wins on the bounce, while West Brom have suffered three consecutive defeats, including a morale damaging loss at home to fellow relegation rivals Leicester City.
The Baggies have conceded 10 in their last three Premier League games and Pulis needs to shore up the backline quickly if they are to keep out of the relegation zone.
Since Alan Pardew’s appointment, Palace have been fantastic in the league, winning eight of his twelve games in charge, suffering three defeats and drawing just the once. They have shown the form of a team chasing those all important Champions League places and look to be in great shape.Embed from Getty Images
Goals have won those matches and critics and pundits alike have been impressed with the Palace forward line that boasts the likes of Yannick Bolasie, Wilfried Zaha and Glenn Murray. Murray and Bolasie both put in incredible performances at Sunderland last weekend and will look to pick up where they left off against the Baggies.
The game at the Stadium of Light saw Bolasie hit an 11-minute hat-trick, becoming the first Palace player to net three in a game in the Premier League, with Glenn Murray also scoring, taking his tally to six goals.Embed from Getty Images
West Brom are just seven points clear of the drop. They are not in any real danger as such but if their poor form continues they will be looking down the table until the season ends.
Tony Pulis has never been relegated as a manager and he always seems to get his teams out of trouble and help stabilise them. That was certainly the case with Crystal Palace last year, who he took from the depths of relegation to an 11th place finish and he will return to Selhurst Park on Saturday.
Pulis was responsible for some important signings to the Palace side that Pardew features in his team, such as Joe Ledley and Scott Dann, before a reported disagreement over Palace’s transfer policies led to Pulis’ departure from the South London club on the eve of this season’s opener.Embed from Getty Images
A win for either side in this one would be vital, with Palace looking to climb into the top half of the table, while West Brom need to end their torrid form here as they still need to travel to teams in the top five before the end of the season.
The reverse fixture saw a 2-2 draw at The Hawthorns back in October, with goals from Brede Hangeland and Mile Jedinak for Palace only to be pegged back by a Victor Anichebe and a Saido Berahino penalty.
Crystal Palace have doubts over Jordan Mutch, Frazier Campbell and Marouane Chamakh but James McArthur and Pape Souare could return from their knocks.
For West Brom, Ben Foster will continue to be sidelined until around October, while the Baggies will hand a late fitness test to Brown Ideye.
Crystal Palace’s last five: L/W/W/W/W
West Brom’s last five: L/W/L/L/L
Key Stat: In the last four matches between the two in all competitions there have been 15 bookings but no dismissals.Embed from Getty Images
Key Player: Yannick Bolasie – The Congolese winger hit a superb hat-trick last weekend at Sunderland and will be thriving for more goals against a West Brom defence that is failing to impress.
Crystal Palace 3-1 West Brom – Palace to get a win that could lift them into the top half of the table. West Brom should get on the scoresheet, but they look likely to miss out on points as Pardew’s men are in excellent form.