Crystal Palace welcome West Ham on match-day nine of the Barclays Premier League on Saturday, the 17th of October. While Palace have garnered an impressive 12 points in their last six games, West Ham too have had an impressive few weeks with 11 points in their last six games. Just a point separates the two teams in the table in fourth and sixth place respectively and both the managers will be harbouring hopes of landing a European spot for the coming season.
The London side will be without the services of striker Connor Wickham and Joel Ward while striker Chamakh is still yet to gain match fitness and be back for contention. We expect Alan Pardew to only make one change to the starting line- up from the last week with Delaney replacing Brede Hangeland.
West Ham have a few injury concerns going into this game as their medical are sweating it out to ensure Aaron Cresswell, Winston Reid, Andy Carroll and Enner Valencia are fit to face Palace on Sunday. The other notable absentee for the London side will be Cameroonian midfielder Alex Song who is recovering from an ankle inury.
- This will only be the 30th meeting between the two sides in all competitions.
- West Ham have held a better hand in the previous meetings as they have won 12 compared to Palace’s 7 wins.
- They have even won a higher number of games at Selhurst Park with 6 wins out of 14 fixtures, while Palace have managed just 3 wins at home.
Hennessey, Kelly, Dann, Delaney, Souare, Cabaye, McArthur, Zaha, Puncheon, Bolasie, Gayle
Adrian, Jenkison, Tomkins, Reid, Cresswell, Kouyate, Noble, Lanzini, Payet, Moses, Sakho
Yohan Cabaye has been central to this team’s fortune ever since moving from PSG. He has pulled strings of the attack beautifully while ensuring he does his share of the dirty work in the middle of the park. He has created 10 chances apart from finding the back of the net on three occasions. As the anchor of the line-up, Cabaye has brought a lot of solidarity to the back line with his combative presence in the middle of the park. The opposition has found it hard to get the rhythm in the middle of the park as Cabaye and his partner-in-crime James McArthur have been disrupting the opposition with tackles and critical interceptions (Cabaye has averaged close to five successful tackles and interceptions per 90 minutes this season).
The Frenchman will be up against another impressive Frenchman Dmitri Payet. He will need to ensure that Payet does not have space to work into while also aiding the Palace attack from a deep lying position.
If Cabaye is loving life back in England, Payet has been here only for months and is already a superstar amongst West Ham fans. The attacking midfielder is full of energy and creativity every time he is on the pitch and has been the galvanising force that West Ham have acutely missed over the last decade or so. The midfielder has created a humongous 32 chances this season (three of which resulted in an assist) and has converted 50% of the eight chances that have come his way this season.
Payet has had a direct hand in seven of the 17 West Ham goals this season and will be pivotal against an in form Alan Pardew side. The midfield dynamo will be looking to put in another impressive performance to add to his impressive resume.
The game between the two sides presents a battle of equal opponents. Both the sides are knocking on a European spot on current form. We believe that this game will end in a goal scoring draw.