Skip to main content

Preview: Crystal Palace v Watford

PUBLISHED

09:33 12th February 2016


INTRO
Palace host Watford for the first time since the first day of the 2012/13 season searching for their first victory in the Premier League in eight games.

If recent history is anything to go by then Eagles fans will be looking at the visit of the Hornets to provide that elusive victory, with Palace winning seven of the past 10 meetings between the sides, including the 1-0 victory at Vicarage Road back in September.

The winner in that encounter came from the penalty spot courtesy of Yohan Cabaye, continuing a trend that has seen the opening goal of the game come from the spot in three of the last four meetings. 

Like Palace, Watford's bright start has fizzled out and have only won once in their last eight games, and failed to score on the road since Boxing Day.


OPPOSITION VIEW

Quique Sanchez Flores: "We respect Crystal Palace a lot. I was very impressed when they played against us at Vicarage Road.

"Okay, they are now in a bad run, like us, but they have a very good coach, they have very good players, and we respect them a lot.

"We need to try to look for our best performance, and I think that very quickly we are going to come back with a good run.

"We are positive, we always believe we can win against every single opponent, but this is our first year and we are building a team.

"We have been working together for six months, so we need to stay calm and confident."


TEAM NEWS

Crystal Palace: Alan Pardew has said that Dwight Gayle could be involved at some point after being injured at the start of December and Connor Wickham can play again after his three match ban, but the Eagles boss has stated that Emmanuel Adebayor will start up front.

Yannick Bolasie and Bakary Sako are still about a week away, while Pardew has also suggested that James McArthur could return before the end of the season after recovering from his knee injury.

Jason Puncheon is still set to be out for a month with a torn hamstring.

Watford: Troy Deeney is set to return to the Hornets line-up after being dropped to the bench because of illness.

Defender Miguel Britos is set for a comeback after a recent thigh problem, with Joel Ekstrand still out for the foreseeable future.


HEAD TO HEAD
Palace winsDrawsWatford wins
League432135
FA Cup123
League Cup111
Play-Offs111
Total462540


STATS
Watford (7) and Palace (9) have conceded the fewest goals in the first half of Premier League games this season.

Only Southampton (454) have fired in more crosses from open play than the Eagles (436) this season in the Premier League.

Watford have allowed their opponents to make a league-high 480 crosses from open play this season, while they have attempted the 19th fewest themselves (300).

The Hornets have caught their opponents offside the most in the league this season (84), while Palace have caught their opponents offside a league-low 30 times.

Palace have scored a league-high eight goals from defenders this season.


OFFICIALS

Rob Madley has awarded a league-high 10 penalties in the 17 Premier League matches that he has taken charge of in 2015/16, including Connor Wickham's against Stoke City in December - his only Eagles action this term.

Referee: R Madley
Assistants: M McDonough and M Perry
Fourth Official: K Hill


LAST MEETING AT SELHURST PARK

18th August 2012
Crystal Palace 2-3 Watford
Championship

Gianfranco Zola made a winning start as Watford manager as two late goals sealed victory at Crystal Palace.

Owen Garvan had put Palace ahead with a 13th minute penalty, before Martin Taylor tapped home an equaliser.

Palace regained the lead when Garvan lashed a shot beyond former Arsenal goalkeeper Manuel Almunia.

However, Almen Abdi levelled with a 25-yard effort before fellow new signing Matej Vydra struck from outside the box to snatch victory.


TICKETS
Tickets are SOLD OUT for this game.


LIVE COVERAGE
Live commentary of all 90 minutes from Selhurst Park will be available on Palace Player. Click HERE to log in or sign up. 

There will also be constant updates throughout the day at @CPFC on Twitter.