Arsenal and Crystal Palace face off against each in other in what will be the second Premier League match of 2017. The two teams had contrasting years but both will look to get off to a solid start. Sam Allardyce has injected renewed enthusiasm and drive into the beleaguered Palace players who won just 6 games in 2016. He has a difficult job on hand and after missing a glorious opportunity to notch all 3 points in his first game in charge, he might well have to wait a little bit longer.
Arsenal saw a bit of their momentum fall by the wayside after defeats against Everton and Manchester City and will be aiming for nothing less than a victory against the Eagles.
- Arsenal have won eight of their last 11 Premier League games against Crystal Palace, drawing the other three.
- Crystal Palace’s only Premier League win against Arsenal came in October 1994 at Highbury, as John Salako scored twice in a 2-1 victory.
- This will be the 200th Premier League game contested at the Emirates – Arsenal have won 129, drawn 47 and lost 23 of the 199 currently played there.
- The only player to have scored more Premier League goals at the Emirates Stadium than both Olivier Giroud and Theo Walcott (35 each) is Robin van Persie (46 overall, 45 for Arsenal).
- Crystal Palace have won just one of their last seven league games away from home on New Year’s Day, beating Portsmouth in 1996 (D1 L5).
- By contrast, Arsenal haven’t lost a home league game on New Year’s Day since 1985 against Tottenham (W6 D2).
- Olivier Giroud has three Premier League goals against the Eagles, but all of those have been scored at Selhurst Park.
- Giroud is averaging a goal every 65 minutes in the Premier League this season (four goals in 259 minutes) and has scored five goals in his last three Premier League starts.
- Sam Allardyce has never won an away Premier League game at Arsenal, drawing three and losing nine of 12 games he has lost each of his last seven, all played at the Emirates.
- Indeed, Allardyce’s sides at Emirates have conceded 26 goals the most by an opposing manager there in the Premier League.
TEAM NEWS & PREDICTED LINE-UPS
Theo Walcott is expected to miss a second successive match for Arsenal with a minor calf problem. However, Shkodran Mustafi is available following a hamstring injury, while Danny Welbeck is getting closer to a return after a long-term knee problem.
Cech; Bellerin, Mustafi, Koscielny, Monreal; Coquelin, Xhaka; Sanchez, Ozil, Iwobi; Giroud
CRYSTAL PALACE (4-2-3-1)
Crystal Palace will be without defender Damien Delaney as he is serving a one-match suspension. Manager Sam Allardyce says James McArthur, Joe Ledley and James Tomkins have an outside chance of being fit.
Hennessey; Ward, McArthur, Dann, Kelly; Flamini, Cabaye; Zaha, Puncheon, Townsend; Benteke
CRYSTAL PALACE- 9/1
TRIVIA COURTESY- OPTA
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