One thing is for sure…securing Top 4 will be tough and then Tottenham is on a roll lately and with Conte at the helm, you know they will be fighting hard for that Top 4 finish…
Until we meet the Spuds, we have to make sure that (1) we always keep a 3 points cushion and (ii) we also keep up with a good goal difference…
So tonight’s game is again super important in the Top 4 race and the least we can say is that Vieira is doing a good job at Palace. They have found their shape, their style and do have some good players in Gallagher, Zaha, McArthur, Guehi, Kouyate, Edouard, Schlupp, Olise, Benteke and Butland, Gaita and even Ayew.
They play in a 4-3-3 and a rather direct style, use the wings a lot but do have some central threat as well. Andersen could be bothered though as his position is sometimes suspect and he can make the odd error. I d put him under pressure…
So here is our predicted line-up:
Leno – Cedric, White, Gabs, Tierney – Partey, Xhaka – Saka, Ode, Martinelli – Laca
My preferred line-up
Leno – Tomy, White, Gabs, Tierney – Partey, Xhaka – Saka, Ode, MENDES – Laca
I d play our FB up front as I think he could be key going forward and defensively and then I d like to bring in Martinelli, ESR and Nketiah to deal the final blow 😛
Crystal Palace line up:
Guaita – Clyne, Andersen, Guehi, Mitchell – Schlupp, Kouyate, Gallagher- Zaha, Mateta, Ayew
Ramsdale – Cedric, White, Gabriel, Tavares – Partey, Xhaka – Saka, Ode, ESR – Laca
No Tierney but Tavares (not Mendes…lol)
Subs: Leno, Sambi Lokonga, Elneny, Swanson, Holding, Nketiah, Martinelli, Ogungbo, Flores
The ones to watch for us: Schlupp, Gallager, Zaha, Mateta and Ayew
The ones to target: Clyne, Anderson
Thanks for the read RC
Why oh why do we always have to put up with Alan Smith?
Anybody got a link to watch the game by any chance…
Where is our team? Can’t recognize them so far…
We need to change our set-up…Let us bring in Holding for Odegaard and play in a 352 with
Rams – Holding, White, Gabs – Cedric, Xhaka, Partey, ESR, Nuno – Saka, Laca
Whole team is having a shocker. What s happening?
Dont agree with your assessment, RC.
Best first half performance from a Palace team this season, I would guess.
Second half require same commitment as them and for the ball to run for us.
Nervous, ponderous, hesitant, we made Palace look good and they took full advantage of it.
Hard to imagine that we will play that poorly in the second half, we shall see……….
Tavares hooked at half time again
See the point am making odegard needs to improve his finishing
A classic case of a team of hard work, muscle and determination having all the breaks ( at least one penalty missed on the day), a goalkeeper on form, and thoroughly deserving of their win.
We live to “fight” another day. Hopefully with two fullbacks available, and plenty of ups and downs still to come. Funny old game.
And his defending.
This is the worse we played since October…Outdone in every part of the game…I thought that Arteta could have changed our shape and taken out Odegaard and Tavares maybe and we could have played in a 3-5-2 set-up…
Anyways, the fight continues and we are back to being hunters…
Ramsdale – 4, tough return
Cedric – 3.5, ineffective
White – 4, poor for his standards
Gabs – 3.5, worse display in an AFC shirt
Tavares – 3, a poor game
Partey – 4, lost
Xhaka – 4.5, our best midfielder and LB today
Saka – 4.5, tried but today was not meant to be
Ode – 3.5, a poor performance going forwards and defending
ESR – 5, our best player of the night especially in the second half
Laca – 4, tried but failed.
Arteta: 4, could have changed things up
Saka was obviously not fit. Partey looked exhausted – tired passes from the off. No one really played well but again Laca doesn’t look like he’ll ever score and the two gilt edged chances we had were squandered. We are definitely a team that needs work on finishing. Palace out hustled us but by the time we gave away the penalty the game was long gone. So now we have to re-group and see what we can do going forward. Maybe our now underdog status will suit us better. Still can’t complain at a small squad doing it’s best. Tierney’s injury problems are also becoming irritating but that’s the risk of a small squad. not sure I’d blame Tavares for either of the goals. Definite foul on the first – can’t see how bundling someone over isn’t a foul but anyway – bad night at the office in general.
let’s come back strong on Saturday !!!
We have no Europe, no cups, and rest for days, yet, here we are.
7th best offense, 4th best defense will not get it done.If we score less than 60 goals this year, pointing out the last two games before this game, were won by miracle shots, the offense is not sorted in the least.
We are on pace for 55.65 goals scored and 44.55 against this year.
The two previous years we have scored 56 and 55 goals, with 48 and 41 goals scored against, that is not much improvement at ALL.
Said a long time ago, one Partey injury and no scoring improvement away from staying in the zone, the zone of mediocrity.
Still have time to turn it around, but I have my doubts Arteta will get it done, a top 4.
If he gets 5-6th should he go?
We play in Europe next year, with a reed thin squad, back to 8th we go without improvements everywhere!
If he gets 5-6th should he go?
But we are still in pole position to end up #4, but we need a draw against Tottenham now.
One thing is certain, if Xhaka is to be our left back for the rest of the season, we’ve had it.