Crystal Palace v Tottenham: Eagles to outgun Bale-less Spurs
A seriously under-strength squad they appear to have, but Crystal Palace can upset Tottenham in this clash of north and south London.
The freshly promoted Eagles can mark their fifth return to the Premier League with three points over their far flashier foes and those brave enough to invest some capital into this belief can get paid out at 7/2 with Ladbrokes.
Spurs are the no-surprise favourites to claim the spoils at 5/6 though, with the draw a 12/5 alternative.
A distinct lack of centre halves in the visitors’ camp, however, makes backing either of these options a risky tact, with Michael Dawson the only fit stopper as kick off draws ever nearer. Younes Kaboul has featured in pre-season, but after missing the bulk of the previous campaign through injury, thrusting him straight back into the frying pan could yield a relapse.
Their failure to address this area in the summer so far could prove costly for AVB’s top four finish aspirations and the long-term woes that await them should this failure be prolonged will be highlighted by a Palace win here.
At Selhurst Park in the division below, only two sides could boast a better home record than Ian Holloway’s men after his side lost just twice from 23 outings, winning 13 times.
The reparation of goal machine Glenn Murray will certainly make things harder for the home team though. They lost 44 per cent of the games without their talisman on the pitch last term compared to the 21 per cent they were defeated with him. His recovery from a cruciate ligament injury means he won’t feature in this game, or a fair few to come.
The pressure will be on new mega-money signing Dwight Gayle to get the goals in Murray’s absence. The man signed from Peterborough for a heavily over the odds £6m, but should he break the deadlock at 8/1, the massive outlay will briefly be forgotten.
All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date