Alan Pardew starts his reign as a Crystal Palace manager by facing red-hot Tottenham Hotspur, with the Eagles missing two important players due to international commitments. Meanwhile, Spurs are brimming with confidence after hammering Premier League leaders Chelsea and they will fancy their chances of winning at Selhurst Park.
Eight Premiership matches without a win
Crystal Palace chiefs are paying the price for their decision to sack Tony Pulis ahead of the new Premier League season, with Neil Warnock getting the boot after failing to keep the Eagles above the bottom three. The club did well to lure Alan Pardew from Newcastle United, but it remains to be seen whether he can help the Eagles beat the drop. Crystal Palace find themselves in a very difficult situation at the moment, with the players low on confidence after an eight-match winless run in the league, with FA Cup triumph over minnows Dover Athletic unlikely to serve as a major boost. There are more problems for new boss Alan Pardew given that key players Mile Jedinak and Yannick Bolasie will spend next few weeks away on international duty, while Marouane Chamakh is another important players that is unavailable for the visit of high-flying Tottenham. And having already suffered six home defeats this season, the Eagles could find it hard to match one of the league’s in-form sides.
Mile Jedinak and Yannick Bolasie are away at Asian Cup and AFCON respectively, whereas Marouane Chamakh is not yet ready to return.
This is proving to be a very successful season for Tottenham Hotspur and things did not seem so great just a couple of months back. Mauricio Pochettino struggled to find his best starting XI, while Spurs struggled for consistency, although the team finally hit the ground running ahead of the festive fixtures. Tottenham recorded four wins in a row to revive their top 4 bid in the Premiership and make it to the next round of the League Cup, before sharing spoils at home with high-flying Manchester United. But, it was the 5-3 triumph over local rivals and league leaders Chelsea that proved Spurs finally have what it takes to match the best sides in the league. White Hart Lane hero Harry Kane produced another brilliant performance, scoring a brace and setting up another two goals, so no doubt he will prove a handful for Crystal Palace defence as well, especially having only spent 45 minutes on the pitch in the FA Cup fixture against Burnley. Having defeated Swansea and Leicester in their last two away matches in the Premiership, Tottenham look a good bet to pile more misery on the Eagles.
Nabil Bentaleb is away on international duty, while Erik Lamela and Ryan Mason both face fitness tests ahead of the Palace game.
Crystal Palace have failed to win any of their last eight league matches and with Jedinak and Bolasie missing, they will have a mountain to climb. Spurs are playing on top of their game at the moment and they are rightly considered odds on favourites for the win.
Top pick: Away win 2.20 (6/5) @ bet365
Alternative pick 1: Over 2.5 goals 2.15 (23/20) @ Coral
Alternative pick 2: Kane to score 2.62 (13/8) @ Betfair