Friday, 25 October 2013

Arsenal's Premier League Trip To Crystal Palace Previewed

After the disappointment of the Champions Lesgue defeat at home to Dortmund on Tuesday night it's back to Premier League action for Arsenal tomorrow. They face a short trip to struggling Crystal Palace in the Premier League's early kick off. With all of the teams chasing them playing later it's a great chance for Arsenal to put some points on the board and pressure on the chasing pack.

Palace are certainly no Dortmund and they have lost their last five league games in a row resulting in them parting ways with manager Ian Holloway. It's strange how often it seems to happen to clubs just before they play Arsenal. I don't think a new manager will be in place before the game, but surely the players will want to impress with all about to change very soon.

Palace have actually lost seven of their eight league games and their only victory came at home to the only team below them in the table. Even then Sunderland were down to 10 men before Palace got the upper hand to take all three points. Their confidence cannot be high and a visit of the league leaders is a very tough prospect for them.

Arsene Wenger has to decide whether to give a few of his players a rest after saying they were a little tired on Tuesday night. There has been precious little chance to rotate the team with the games coming thick and fast and so many players out injured. The players are available to rotate against Palace though and he might just consider doing so.

He has to keep in mind that there is a midweek Capital One Cup game with Chelsea and that's a game he can most certainly give players a run in. I think he will go with a pretty strong side and hope to put the game to bed before taking a few players off if and when it's done. 60 minutes against Palace and a break in midweek might just be what's needed for a few players before a really tough schedule for Arsenal in the week after the Chelsea game.

That week could define how their season progresses with the trip to Dortmund sandwiched between league games with Liverpool and United. If Arsenal can come through those games still in contention in their Champions League group and on top of the Premier League things will certainly be looking very positive. It won't be an easy task but it's one I feel the team are capable of completing.

I watched Palace lose 4-1 at home to Fulham on Monday night and I thought they were a little bit unlucky. They were 1-0 up and playing better than Fulham until two magnificent goals out of nothing changed the game. They then conceded two sloppy goals from set pieces early in the second half and there was no coming back for them.

Arsenal have the players to really hurt Palace though and if they play their strongest team Palace could be in for a very hard days work. Some of the football Arsenal played against Norwich last week was scintillating and they're more than capable of doing so against Palace. The best way for them to put the disappointment of the defeat against Dortmund behind them is by taking three points and staying on top of the table..

I wouldn't be surprised if the team was pretty similar to the one on Wednesday night with Mathieu Flamini maybe coming back from his knock to replace Mikael Arteta. I think Jack Wilshere might be rested after taking a knock on Tuesday night and the obvious player to take his place would be Santi Cazorla. Other than those changes I have a feeling the team might stay the same as the boss won't want to take things for granted and has to be sure the game is won. 

No matter which way the boss decides to go with the team I think Arsenal will be too strong for Palace. They should be good enough to win by a few goals at least and I fully expect them to do so.

I don't dream about Arsenal too much but last night I dreamt Theo Walcott scored a hat trick in a 4-0 win. I don't even think Walcott will be back from injury but stranger things have happened. I'd be more than happy with that scoreline of course but the most important thing is for Arsenal to get the win.

That's it for today.

See you tomorrow.


  1. I got. To make a comment here about Szczesny despite slight improvment from last season he is not good enough for Arsenal the last 3 goals he gave up were stopable andit came due to poor reading of the play as it developed in front of him thus late reaction and ball in the Onion bag we need and desrve better

  2. I don't think Szczesny did anything wrong for either of the goals Dortmund scored as he was left cruelly exposed each time. When a player has that much time and space there is little a keeper can do.