The Boxing Day round of fixtures is nearly over with just Arsenal’s trip to Crystal Palace to be played.

Palace come into this, down in 16th place after others around them picked up points on Tuesday.

Arsenal however need a win to keep pace with Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool in the battle for fourth.

 

Team News

Crystal Palace manager, Roy Hodgson can call on striker, Christian Benteke after the Belgian served a one match ban.

 

Christian Benteke

Crystal Palace striker, Christian Benteke will be hoping to return following a one match ban, hopefully not to another missed penalty as saw in last home match.

 

Defender, Joel Ward meanwhile is still struggling with a groin issue.

Arsenal could be missing centre back, Nacho Monreal after the Spaniard picked up an ankle injury against Liverpool last Friday.

Oliver Giroud is ruled out with a hamstring injury alongside Aaron Ramsay.

Santi Cazorla is still missing with an ankle injury from October 2016.

 

Stat Attack

  • Palace’s 3-0 win in April over Arsenal was their first since October 1994.
  • Since returning from last month’s international break, the Eagles have gone on an eight match unbeaten streak.
  • Whilst Arsenal have lost once at home this season, they have notched up just two away wins in the league.
  • The Eagles have a (W10 D4 L9) record at Selhurst Park in 2017 whilst Arsenal’s  away record reads as (W14 D5 L10) in all competitions this calendar year.

 

Tight match in store

This match could very well be tight if compare the per game average graphics for both teams across seven different areas.

Palace are more dominant than those visiting Selhurst Park at corners, shots and attempts on target.

Their clinical finishing is what lets them down in converting those attempts into goals and more points.

Arsenal meanwhile dominate every area except goals on their travels to various grounds.

If compare the numbers of both teams directly, excluding the opposition, things are a lot tighter.

Per game average Crystal Palace (home) Arsenal (away)
Corners 6.44 5.22
Fouls 11.22 11.89
Shots 15.67 14.67
Shots on target 5.33 4.67
Goals 1.33 1
Yellow cards 2.56 1.78
Red cards 1 2

Palace oust Arsenal in several areas but commit just 0.67 fouls less on average than their superior rivals. 

Finishing is poor from both teams home/away respectively, looking at those tiny averages compared to many other clubs in the top tier. 

Discipline ultimately might be key with the Gunners averaging 0.78 less yellow cards but have averaged just one more red than Palace. 

 

Prediction

This will be feisty with lot of fouls and cards issued but I think Arsenal will just edge it. 

Prediction: Crystal Palace 1-2 Arsenal 

Jake predicts: Crystal Palace 1-1 Arsenal

Result: Crystal Palace 2-3 Arsenal

 

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