Crystal Palace v Everton

It’s 10 long months since Everton’s last win on the road, coincidently coming against this Saturday’s opponents at Selhurst Park, courtesy of a late, late Seamus Coleman strike.

David Unsworth takes charge of the first team once again while the lengthy search for a permanent manager continues, and he will be desperate for a change of fortune on the road.

Unsworth needs to find a formula that allows his troops to perform like they did in the last 25 minutes of the Watford clash for the full 90.

It was a massive win two weeks ago, after nearly two months without victory, but it is how the team kick on that will really show the credentials of Everton.
Palace are rock bottom of the Premier League after a disastrous opening 11 games of the campaign which has seen them only pick up one win, surprisingly against last year’s Champions, Chelsea.

Things have looked better over the last few weeks for the Eagles, with Roy Hodgson going back to basics, an equaliser against West Ham with the last kick of the game and an unlucky loss at Wembley to Spurs in their last two fixtures.

Who are Crystal Palace’s dangermen?

Wilfried Zaha has everything a low on confidence Everton defence do not want to come up against… pace, trickery and an eye for a goal.
He is Crystal Palace’s top scorer in the league this season, with 50% of their goals coming from the Ivorian international.

However, that is no real achievement in the current climate, with Chelsea’s Cesar Azpilicueta and a penalty being his closest rivals.

Christian Benteke must love coming up against the Blues, having netted five goals and collected an assist in seven appearances against Everton.

The Belgian is looking to open his 2017/18 tally after an impressive 17 goals in his first season at Palace.

A massive threat to any defence on his day, you won’t see the 6ft3 attacker lose out on many areal duels.

Team news – 

England’s Man of the Match against Germany, Ruben Loftus Cheek, went off injured against Brazil in the early stages, so the young Englishman is a doubt for the clash.

Benteke has shrugged off an injury that has kept him out for the Londoners’ last few games.

Patrick van Aanholt, Jordon Mutch and Lee Chung-yong are unavailable for the hosts.

Long term absentees Yannick Bolasie, Ross Barkley, Ramiro Funes Mori and Coleman are still out, with James McCarthy and Cuco Martina still on the side-lines.
Tom Davies picked up a knock during England under 21 duties so is doubtful for this one.

A win could see Everton rise to 12th in the division, a loss would have the Toffees teetering in or around the relegation zone, depending on results elsewhere.
It is the start of a run of matches against sides grouped closely in the league, and if Everton want to push away from their early season lows of the bottom half of the table, then these are the types of games the Blues must pick up all three points in.

Up the Toffees.

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