Crystal Palace vs Aston Villa – 2014
Crystal Palace – 11/10
Draw – 9/4
Aston Villa – 14/5
Lambert on Palace/Pulis
“He did brilliantly when he was at Stoke, and he’s doing really well now at Palace. I get on pretty well with him, and you know what you get with Tony’s sides, that it’s going to be a hard game.
“He’s got a squad of good, honest pros who have picked up a couple of good results lately that has given them a fighting chance.”
Pulis on Villa
“Villa have got some fantastic traditions as a football club. Paul is a great manager. He’s changed the playing side.
“He’s got a lot of younger players in the group. They’ve got an exciting team.
“The fact they’re missing Benteke is a blow for them but they’ve got some really good players and we know it will be a really tough game on Saturday.”
Form is Temporary
3rd January 2005 Crystal Palace 2 Aston Villa 0
A brace from Andrew Johnson saw off Villa in the last league clash at Selhurst Park.
Crystal Palace – Last five matches at home: W 3, L 2
Aston Villa – Last five matches away: D 2, L 3
Villa have played Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park four times in the era of the Premier League, and we didn’t win on any of those occasions.
One to Watch
Jason Puncheon – scored twice against Cardiff last weekend and adds creativity to Pulis’s side
Facts to Sweep Under the Carpet
In the first half of the season away days were a more reliable source of three points and fun for Villa fans, but even that has been robbed from us lately. We haven’t won an away game in our last five attempts. Unfortunately the stats continue to work against us. Even though Benteke didn’t perform quite as well as he did last season, his absence will continue to affect us. In the six games Christian Benteke hasn’t played in, we’ve only scored six goals. With Pulis instilling defensive discipline to the Eagles, they could be a difficult team to break down. Palace will be high on confidence following two consecutive wins (and clean-sheets!)
What We Pray the Football Gods Will Provide
When it looked like Villa were destined for the Championship last season, Lambert had the side playing some of the best football under his tenure. For the past couple of months, with relegation looking unlikely, there doesn’t seem to be that urgency about Villa’s play. Crystal Palace followed up their 1-0 win over Chelsea with a 3-0 win away at Cardiff. We followed up our 1-0 win over Chelsea with a 4-1 defeat to Stoke. Hopefully we’ll see the performance of a team looking to eradicate any mention of the ‘R’ word rather than that of a side happy with their mid-table position.
Why Villa have got this game in the bag
Simply because we’re desperate for a win. A lot of records have been negatively broken recently due to poor performances, and we’re not safe from relegation yet. Grant Holt had a decent game against Fulham and his goal was hopefully a sign of more to come. With Delph and Gabby likely to return, we should be able to record our first league win at Selhurst Park in the Premier League era. Palace’s home form isn’t particularly brilliant and perhaps if they underestimate a Benteke-less Villa, complacency will work in our favour. UTV
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