Poyet won’t throw youngsters in against Crystal Palace
Crystal Palace, odds-on with Coral at 1/3 to stay up this season, host fellow strugglers Sunderland, knowing that a win will take them four points clear of their opponents.
The Black Cats have conceded 11 goals in their last three matches, and although eight of them came against Southampton, Palace are more than capable of breaching Gus Poyet’s teams’ rearguard, with the likes of Dwight Gayle, 7/1 to score first and Fraizer Campbell, 6/1 in the same market, in their team.
Gayle is the Eagles’ leading marksman so far with five goals in all competitions but, because of limited opportunities under Neil Warnock, the 24-year-old last netted a Premier League goal in August. Campbell, however is in slightly better form and it was his last minute strike that briefly gave Palace hope of pinching a point off Chelsea.
Sunderland, meanwhile, 3/1 to win the match, have lost their last two league games so will see this as an ideal opportunity to take some much-needed points.
Boss Gus Poyet said recently, that he will not throw his youngsters into the first team just for the sake of it, following a couple of disappointing performances, however, he has acknowledged that academy stars Duncan Watmore and Tom Robson do have talent.
“If one day we’ve got a player who is 17, 18 or 19 and he’s ready, he’ll play,” said Poyet. “If he can perform in the same way he does for the Under-21s as he does for the first team, then he’ll play.
“But it depends on how you’re doing in the first team. If the first team is doing OK, then you can put people in. But at the moment, no.
“Robbo travelled with us to Southampton – what an experience that was for him! It’s why the cup is perfect. I remember last year when I played Duncan and he was running and the people went ballistic,” he continued.
“I wouldn’t be afraid of playing Robbo against certain teams either. There are things he can do, but things he needs to improve too.”
The Black Cats have three players, Steven Fletcher, Adam Johnson and Connor Wickham all on two goals across all competitions this term, though it is the former that has scored both of his in the league, and is 7/1 to open the scoring.