Tony Pulis’ Baggies battle Crystal Palace for Selhurst Park spoils
West Bromwich Albion boss Tony Pulis once again returns to former stomping ground Selhurst Park, as Albion encounter Crystal Palace in an early Premier League Saturday kick-off.
This weekend curtain-raiser provides Palace hero Pulis, who steered the Eagles through a relegation scuffle to safety back in 2014, the chance to impress in London again. Guests West Brom are 7/2 outsiders to win, having triumphed 2-0 on their last visit to the capital club.
Pulis spoke ahead of the encounter, telling press: “I have got no issues about coming back to Palace at all. I am going to enjoy coming back and I am looking forward to the game.
“It is a wonderful atmosphere at Selhurst and the Palace fans have kept it going – they haven’t let up at all which is fantastic.”
Current form for coach Pulis is more problematic, as the Baggies have suffered back-to-back defeats across league and cup, conceding six in the past two games, which is unusual for any of the ex-Stoke tactician’s sturdy outfits.
Albion have also failed to be formidable on their travels, racking-up just two on the road so far, so will require Saido Berahino, now back in the fold, to be in top form. The Burundi-born striker is 13/2 to nab the first goal, after notching two in as many of his last matches, while fellow forwards Rickie Lambert and Salomon Rondon are both 11/4 shouts in the anytime market.
As for the Eagles, Alan Pardew has had the hosts in full flight recently, only losing at home to big-guns Arsenal and Manchester City all season. So, Palace are odds-on at 5/6 to sink Albion at Selhurst Park, though are better value at 17/10 for a victory to nil.
Having squeezed past Watford last matchweek, the Pardew’s plucky team know how to win tight games, though will be missing sidelined quartet Damien Delaney, Connor Wickham, Mile Jedinak, and Joel Ward.
The Eagles still possess plenty of attacking impetus with dangerous Dwight Gayle in excellent form, after hitting a recent hat-trick against Charlton Athletic, and looking a threat versus Watford.
“I was very impressed with Dwight last Sunday. If he had scored two goals he would have been man of the match, and he could have, he was so unlucky with a couple of chances,” said Pardew of the poacher. Punters can back Gayle at 6/1 to strike first, or 7/4 to grab a goal anytime, with superb summer signing Bakary Sako also 7/4 in the same market.
Betting tip: Back Dwight Gayle @ a superb 6/1 to bag the opening goal against West Brom