Crystal Palace would love to get back to the FA Cup final, after falling to Manchester United in 2016, but it is not the main priority of their season. They are only three points off the relegation zone, despite being in 14th place. While they would love to beat their London rivals and advance to the fifth round of the FA Cup, it’s really a bonus to them and not their primary focus.
Tottenham are in the midst of a serious injury crisis. They never had a lot of depth due to not buying anyone in the summer. With all their injuries, they are in a lot of trouble. They also just went out of the Carabao Cup in the semi-finals to Chelsea. Spurs haven’t won a trophy in 11 years, so they will want to try to win the FA Cup. That said, they need to make the Champions League to help pay for their stadium. It will be very interesting to see how they line up, with all those factors and all the injuries.
Crystal Palace have something of an injury crisis of their own, though theirs is much more narrow. Both Vincente Guaita and Wayne Hennessey are out with injuries, leaving 39-year-old Julian Speroni as their only first-team goalkeeper available. They’ll also be without Pape Souare, according to Physioroom.com.
Spurs will be without Harry Kane, Dele Ali and Ben Davies through injury, according to Physioroom.com, along with Son Heung-min as South Korea only just went out of the Asian Games. Along with them, Vincent Wanyama and Moussa Sissoko will have late fitness tests, according to Physioroom.com.
Crystal Palace: Wilfried Zaha
Zaha carries a lot of Palace’s attack on his shoulders. He was able to get off six shots in their first FA Cup match and, while he couldn’t get any shots against Liverpool, he created on of their goals against the league leaders. His dribbling ability allows him to cut up defences. He will hope to get a lot of transition opportunities with Spurs injuries in midfield and inability to create attacks with their injuries in attack.
Tottenham: Fernando Llorente
Kane is the most important Spurs attacker and with him out Spurs have turned to Llorente. While he didn’t score against Fulham, he did get five shots off and he scored their only goal against Chelsea on Thursday. Spurs are incredibly thin in attack and could have to rest some of their key players, so Llorente could be incredibly important to their chances of advancing.
A lot of this game depends on how the two teams lineup. Both teams have good reasons to prioritize the league over the cup in this match. Ultimately, it could be tough for a thin and tired Spurs team to win this away game.