Big Match Breakdown: Crystal Palace v Arsenal

Nick Murphy | 28 December 2017

Goals expected in South London

The festive football continues tonight with a London derby between Crystal Palace and Arsenal at Selhurst Park. 

Both of these sides have been in good form of late. The Eagles are unbeaten in eight matches, while the Gunners are undefeated in their last six.

The Coral News Team are on hand to guide you through what should be an intriguing evening of action in South London…


Palace have only won twice in this fixture since 1979. However, they did claim all three points in the most recent meeting between the pair.  Goals from Yohan Cabaye, Andros Townsend and Luka Milivojevic secured a 3-0 victory at Selhurst Park in April.

Aside from that success, the Eagles have endured a miserable time against their London neighbours. Roy Hodgson’s men have lost seven of their last nine against the Gunners. That run includes four home defeats in seven matches.

Likely XIs

Christian Benteke missed Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Swansea City but will return for this one. He’s likely to replace James McArthur as the hosts switch to a 4-3-3 formation.

Arsenal will be without Nacho Monreal after the Spaniard was forced off at half-time in Friday’s 3-3 draw with Liverpool. Shkodran Mustafi is expected to fill in as his replacement. Ainsley Maitland-Niles could also retain his place as the Gunners look to counteract Palace’s pace going forward.

Crystal Palace vs Arsenal - Football tactics and formations

Key Battles

The most intriguing aspect of this game will be how the Arsenal defence deals with the joint-threat of Wilfried Zaha and Townsend.

Arsene Wenger’s side are notoriously lacking when it comes to discipline at the back. Against a Palace forward line full of dynamism, running and individual flair, the Gunners could find themselves stretched.

On the flip side, the Eagles will have to be at their best to keep the Gunners trio of Alexandre Lacazette, Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez quiet.

Ruben Loftus-Cheek will also be a key player for the hosts.

Match Odds

Crystal Palace are 17/5 to take all three points, with the Gunners available at 4/5. You can back the draw at 29/10.

Arsenal have conceded in six of their nine Premier League away games so far this season. However, they’ve also scored 13 goals in those matches. It’s 6/10 for Both Teams to Score. Given the good recent form of both sides, Draw and Both Teams to Score could also pay at 18/5.

In terms of goalscorers, Zaha is priced handily at 13/5 Anytime. The Ivorian has scored the last goal of the match twice already this season at Selhurst Park and is 17/5 to extend that record.

Sanchez looks well-priced for the visitors at 7/5, while Alex Iwobi, who scored against the Eagles in the first game of 2017, is 13/5 to repeat the feat tonight.

Palace have taken eight points from losing positions in their last five home games. They’re 18/1 to cause a shock and win from behind under the lights this evening.

Big match previews, betting tips and transfer news – Coral have it all.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing