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    Crystal Palace v Sunderland: Match Preview

    From the outside looking in this would seem like a routine home win for Pardew's Palace team who will look to continue their good form after inflicting a first defeat upon Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool last time out. Sam Allardyce is still looking to kick start his Sunderland career after what seems like a false dawn in the Tyne-Wear Derby. Since that 3-0 win at the end of October Sunderland have lost both Premier League games and remain rooted in the relegation zone.



    Crystal Palace come into this game absolutely flying after a great October, picking up four points from games against Manchester United and Liverpool. This has contributed to the Eagles best ever start to a Premier League season, who sit proudly on 19 points after 12 games. Palace have been pretty fearless so far this season, picking up huge away wins over Chelsea and Liverpool and they were massively unlucky not to beat a tame Manchester United side at Selhurst Park. Pardew has to take the credit for turning his side into a more attacking force whilst maintaining the defensive stability that was put in place by Tony Pulis.

    Alan Pardew has no injury concerns coming into the game. When asked about his French contingent, as well as Martin Kelly who was in Paris during the tragic events, Pardew stated that all his players were in the right frame of mind to play. They will also be boosted up front by the return of Connor Wickham who is in contention to face his former employers.

    Sunderland are firmly in relegation trouble and sit four points adrift from safety. The have only ever had fewer points after 12 games in the 2005/06 season when they finished bottom of the league with a then record low points total of 15. The stats do not make good reading for Sunderland fans or Big Sam but he will know they need to start picking up points before the busy Christmas period to stand a chance of survival.


    Sunderland's miserable season in 05/06 went down as the worst ever until it was overtaken by Derby in 2008

    The Black Cats will have an almost full squad to choose from as Adam Matthews remains the only absentee. Lee Cattermole returned to training this week and will be in contention to return to the side after his groin injury, and John O'Shea looks to have fully recovered from injury after helping the Republic of Ireland to Euro 2016 qualification.

    In both games last season the away side emerged victorious, and Sunderland fans will be buoyed by Palace's erratic home form. They have won only 3 of their last 10 at home, being much more solid on the road. Sunderland however have only won once in their last 15 games in all competitions and don't have any standout performers at the moment to really threaten Palace. Yohan Cabaye will be the big threat against Sunderland, the Frenchman has been excellent since his return to the Premier League and has contributed plenty of goals and defensive solidity for Alan Pardew.

    Predicition

    The international break will have given Sunderland coaching staff more time to assess and work with their squad, but I still can't see them picking up a win. Palace will see back to back games against Sunderland and Newcastle as a chance to really establish top half credentials. I'm going 2-1 Palace.

    You can get Palace to win at 8/15
    You can get Sunderland to win at 11/2
    If you like my prediction you can get it at 15/2 (all bets through Skybet)


    By Darren Beck (@DarrenBeck13)
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    Item Reviewed: Crystal Palace v Sunderland: Match Preview Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Darren Beck
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