On one side, Palace will be coached by P.Vieira – one of our legendary and most decorated captains. Since he left the club, we are still search for the “New Vieira” not only for his amazing football skillset but also for his personality on the pitch and as a captain. If you were to ask to make an ultimate AFC starting XI, there is 99% chance that it will include Vieira…His coaching career has not hit the same heights yet but he has a definite game plan, which is very much based on fast transition so his teams do not hesitate to attack from the wings with fast players or to play long balls to an anchor point who can hold up the play and then link with his teammates. Clearly, C. Palace is a team with good players all over the pitch but not great players. They re playing more consistently and are only 3 points behind us…Guaita, Guehi, Schlupp, Kouyate, Zaha, Edouard are the ones to watch for sure but Ayew and Benteke have also bothered us in the past…
On our side, Arteta will hope to see a resilient, solid and accomplished display from his team. It seems that he has found his defensive set up. There are still some question marks around his team’s ability to create and score goals but with ESR’s recent outings, there is an overall sense of optimism. I think our team will also be hard to beat but it will depend largely on our wings players (full backs and wingers) and central defenders. If they are disciplined enough, I think we can sail through another home victory. So despite not being our most decorated captain ever, Arteta has a better squad at his disposal and seems to improve his tactical nous and he may well get one over Vieira on Monday. COYG
Predicted line-up for AFC:
Ramsdale – Tomy, White, Gabs, Tierney – Partey, Lokonga – Saka, Ode, ESR, Auba
Ramsdale – Tomy, White, Gabs, Tierney – Partey, AMN – Saka, ESR, Pepe (or Martinelli) – Laca
I think that ESR would be able to control the game so there would not be a need for Ode and I think that Pepe or Martinelly could hurt Palace’s defense with their pace while Laca could force them into making mistakes.
Prediction: 2-1 for AFC.
Goals from ESR and Saka for us and Edouard for CP if we play in my preferred line-up
Goals from ESR and Tierney for us and Edouard for CB if we play in Arteta’s preferred line-up