Crystal Palace v West Ham United Cheat Sheet
Crystal Palace v West Ham United
Saturday afternoon sees West Ham travel to Crystal Palace with both teams knowing a victory may see them secure their Premier League status next season. A win for the home side would mean that they would reach the 40-point mark. A win for the hammers would elevate them to 37 points which should be enough given the number of teams below them and struggling.
Crystal Palace were on an awful run of form under Patrick Vieira and looked to be sleepwalking into a relegation battle, yet many of their fans were disappointed to see him leave following a tricky run of fixtures, despite being winless in 2023. Fans were further underwhelmed when former boss Roy Hodgson was appointed but three wins in a row over Leicester, Leeds, and Southampton, by an aggregate scoreline of 9-2, has eased those concerns.
Since then, they have drawn here against Everton and lost at Wolves but they are still in 12th, eight points clear of the drop, and will be playing Premier League football next season unless something catastrophic happens.
Joachim Anderson is a doubt after being substituted off with an injury at half time on Tuesday night against Wolves, having already scored an own goal. Wilfried Zaha and Nathaniel Clyne will probably not start but may be on the bench, whilst Nathan Ferguson remains out with a long-term injury.
West Ham fans have been disappointed with their campaign so far this season, but it could still be a successful year if they avoid the drop and win the Conference League, which they are the bookies favourites for.
They are five points clear of the drop, with a game in hand on every team around them, and probably only need another win to ensure their safety for next season. Hammers fans were disappointed not to get something out of the game against Liverpool in midweek having gone 1-0 up, but they have lost just two of their last 11 and away from home have won three and drawn one of their last four in all competitions.
Moyes should have just one absentee – Gianluca Scamacca – who has a knee injury. However, given that they have fewer than 72 hours to prepare following the Liverpool game, it is likely that they will make changes for this one.
Eberechi Eze was in and out of the Crystal Palace team a lot under Patrick Vieira but he has been an integral part of Hodgson’s side – playing all 450 minutes under the manager so far. This season he is averaging 2.35 shots per 90 with 0.86 of those on target, but since having a new manager, he has increased those numbers. In his five games, he has scored three goals – including a brace at Southampton – and has had 15 shots, with nine of those on target.
This selection has landed in all five. The forward has played 85 minutes or more 13 times this season, having at least one shot on target in nine of those matches, including in five of the six games at Selhurst Park. He has also taken 11 of Crystal Palace’s 19 shots in the league from free-kicks this season. In the reverse fixture at the London Stadium, he played 90 minutes, having four shots with one on target, also grabbing an assist.
Thilo Kehrer has made 29 fouls this season (1.36 per 90), behind just Lucas Paqueta (41) and Tomas Soucek (45) in the West Ham squad, picking up four yellow cards. He has made 22 league starts for his club this season, making at least one foul in 17 of those. Away from home, he has made nine fouls in nine games (where he has played 90 minutes), with committing at least one in six of those games. He was also booked at Chelsea.
His opponent here may be Jordan Ayew, who has been fouled the most of any Crystal Palace player this season (74) at an average of 2.94 times per 90. In his last ten appearances where he has played an hour or more, Ayew has drawn 30 fouls, with at least one in every match, and at least two in nine of them.
He has been fouled three times or more in seven of those games. Kehrer should come in over Coufal given that the Hammers have not had much rest since the Liverpool game, but it is always worth waiting until lineups are announced nonetheless.
In all competitions, West Ham have picked up 11 cards in their five most recent away games. In two of those games, they have received at least three yellow cards and in four of them they have had at least two bookings. In this fixture last season Ben Johnson and Arthur Masuaku were booked for the Hammers.
In the five games since Roy Hodgson has been in charge, Crystal Palace’s opponents have been booked 18 times, as well as getting a red card. Not only has this selection landed in all of those matches, but the other side have had at least three cards in all of them, and at least four in three of the five. The two matches at Selhurst Park have seen seven yellows and a red given to the visitors.
The referee for this one is Craig Pawson, who has averaged 3.94 cards per game across his 19 Premier League games so far this season. He has given the away side an average of 1.89 cards per game, showing at least two to the visitors in 47% of his matches.
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