The Eagles Go Hunting at Goodison Park

Last updated: February 4, 2020 by Leon Marshal

Game details

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Kick-off: Saturday, 12:30
Venue: Goodison Park
Coverage: BT Sport 1
Home Form: LWDDW
Away Form: LDDLL
Last Meeting: Palace 0 – 0 Everton
Competition: EPL

The new winter break sees just four games this weekend with the highlight being Everton against Crystal Palace. An intriguing matchup between two sides that both have great attacking flair and speedy players in their ranks. Everton’s Richarlison and Palace’s Zaha are the players to watch.

The Carlo Ancelotti effect is proving to be more than just a managerial bounce and is already paying dividends. Since taking charge on 21st December; he has won four, drawn two and lost once, albeit to the defending champions Manchester City. The 60-year-old Italian has instilled a fighting spirit into his team that was so lacking under former manager, Marco Silva.

A spirit that was evident in his teams battling performance against Watford at the weekend. The Toffees were two-nil down in the 42nd minute, but two goals in quick succession by Yerry Mina paved the way for a Theo Walcott 90th minute winner. The admirable aspect of the victory is that Everton played the last 20 minutes with just ten men after Fabian Delph was sent off. Victory against Watford was the first time that Everton came from behind to win since the 18th December 2017. Under Silva, Everton conceded first in 28 games and only salvaged five draws; they already have four points after conceding first under Ancelotti’s short rule.

The former Chelsea, Real Madrid, Juventus, PSG, and Bayern manager will hope his side keep the impressive unbeaten run in the last four league matches and last five home matches to keep their European hopes alive. Everton are the third-best team in regards to form in the Premier League with only Manchester City and Liverpool above them.

Crystal Palace’s form in comparison has been dismal with a series of poor results and registering just one win in the last ten games. Wilfred Zaha staying over the January window is good news for the Eagle fans, but his output of 3 goals and four assists feels shoddy especially for the team’s talisman and often focal point of attack. Jordan Ayew is the team’s top scorer with six goals with the return of Townsend likely to send him to a central position where he has been more effective.

The Eagles are the lowest scoring side at home with just ten goals at Selhurst Park and just one goal since the turn of the year, that goal came against Arsenal in the credible 1-1 draw. Their away form, however, has been impressive, with a stunning 2-2 draw with Manchester City in January an example.

Palace’s manager Roy Hodgson was clearly unimpressed with the way the board handled business in the recently closed window as the squad is short in the full-back position. Van Aanohlt and Joe Ward returned to the team to feature in the 1-0 defeat to Sheffield United, but Mamadou Sakho is out with a thigh injury, and Jeffrey Schlupp is sidelined for another three weeks. Connor Wickham’s loan to Sheffield Wednesday has left Palace with Christian Benteke as the only choice upfront. Cenk Tosun, who is also suffering from a thigh injury, would have been ineligible to play against his parent club Everton if he had been fit.

Crystal Palace’s recent loss against Sheffield United came from an uncharacteristic error by goalkeeper Vincente Guaita, who has been the team’s best player so far this season. Manager Hodgson admitted after the game that the defeat had deflated the dressing room. The former England manager said his team put up a spirited fight and deserved at least a point from the game.

Team News

Carlo Ancelloti has won four, drawn two and lost just one match since he took over as Everton manager.

Everton has had a quiet window but managed to beat Liverpool and Manchester City in the race to acquire the services of 17-year-old Jarrad Branthwaite from Carlisle United.

Crystal Palace has won just one of the last ten games in all competitions and hasn’t won against Everton in the last ten matches.

Injured and ineligible Cenk Tosun is on loan from Everton till the end of the season while 18-year-old Scott Banks has signed from Dundee United.

Expected Line-Ups:

Everton (4-3-3): Pickford, Sidibe, Mina, Holgate, Digne, Davies, Schneiderlin, Sigurdsson, Walcott, Calvert-Lewin, Richarlison
Subs: Lossi, Keane, Delph, Iwobi, Kean, Coleman
Injured: Martina, Gomes, Gbamin
Doubtful: Bernard
Not available:
Crystal Palace (4-3-3): Guaita, Ward, Kelly, Cahill, Aanholt, McArthur, Milivojevic, McCarthy, Ayew, Benteke, Zaha
Subs: Hennessey, Dann, Meyer, Kouyate, Townsend, Riedewald
Injured: Tosun, Schlupp, Sakho, Tomkins
Not available:

So Far This Season

. . .
Everton This Season Crystal Palace This Season
9th League Position 14th
9 (3) Wins (away) 7 (3)
3 – 1 v Chelsea Biggest Win 2 – 0 v Norwich
6 (3) Draws (away) 9 (5)
2 – 5 v Liverpool Biggest Defeat 0 – 4 v Spurs
Calvert-Lewin(10) Top Goal Scorer Ayew (6)
Y44, R3 Discipline Y40, R2
6 Failures to Score 10
24% Clean Sheets 24%
60% Both Teams to Score Games 44%
48% Over 2.5 Goals 28%
52% Under 2.5 Goals 72%
  • Everton and Crystal Palace have faced off 21 times, Everton winning nine against Palace’s five with seven of the matches ending in a stalemate.
  • Calvert-Lewin will be the only player in double figures with ten goals closely followed by Richarlison who has eight. Crystal Palace’s top goalscorer is Jordan Ayew with six goals.
  • Palace have not won any of the last ten encounters against Everton, losing four and drawing six.
  • The Toffees have an average of 1.72 chances created per match compared to the Eagles 0.76 chances and an average of 1.24 goals per match against Palace’s 0.88 goals per match.

Head to Head

Last 5 meetings between the two sides
Date Competition Game Result First Goal-scorer
10/08/2019 EPL Palace 0 – 0 Everton
27/04/2019 EPL Palace 0 – 0 Everton
21/10/2018 EPL Everton 2 – 0 Palace Calvert-Lewin 87’
10/02/2018 EPL Everton 3 – 1 Palace Sigurdsson 46′
18/11/2017 EPL Palace 2 – 2 Everton McArthur 1’

Conclusion & Betting Tips

Everton are on a good run of form and are understandably favourites for the clash at Goodison Park. The Eagles have won just one game in the last ten but managed to hold both Arsenal and Manchester City to draws.

A telling stat is a tally of Under 2.5 goals games involving the teams, Everton’s games see under 2.5 goals 52% of the time, with Palace it is 72%.

Therefore, a narrow Everton win seems to be the most likely outcome. A 1-0 win to Everton is priced @ 5/1 with 888sport.