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Preview: Palace v Cardiff City

PUBLISHED

11:45 6th December 2013


ABOUT
Tony Pulis takes charge of his second home game as Crystal Palace manager against Cardiff City on Saturday, with his side in buoyant mood following their win over West Ham United last time out. 

That 1-0 victory meant Palace have now conceded just one goal in their last four matches, registering two consecutive clean sheets at home in the process.

A win for the hosts on Saturday would make it back-to-back Premier League wins for the first time since October 2004, when they defeated West Bromwich Albion and Birmingham City.

The Eagles go into the weekend’s fixtures four points adrift of the visitors, who lie 15th in the table after their midweek draw at Stoke City. 

The Bluebirds have lost three times on the road so far this season with a solitary away win to their name, which came against Fulham in September. 

But their recent win at Selhurst will provide a fair amount of encouragement for the travelling Welsh contingent – they have won four of their last eight visits to SE25, losing three and drawing one in that run. 

TEAM NEWS
Crystal Palace: Tony Pulis has no fresh injury concerns following Tuesday night’s win over West Ham, although Jerome Thomas is still unlikely to feature after picking up an injury in training.

Adlene Guedioura also remains sidelined after fracturing two ribs and suffering a punctured lung in the 2-0 defeat at West Brom last month, while Yannick Bolasie serves the last match of a three-game suspension. 

Glenn Murray, Jack Hunt and Paddy McCarthy all remain out of contention with long-term injury problems, but Jonny Williams is pushing for a start after featuring as a substitute in Palace’s last two matches. 

Jimmy Kebe also impressed after coming on as substitute against Norwich and West Ham and will be firmly in the manager’s thoughts when selecting tomorrow’s starting XI.  

Cardiff City: The Bluebirds have just the one injury doubt ahead of their trip to south London, with Craig Bellamy facing a late fitness test. 

The fit-again Andres Cornelius could start his first Premier League game since his £7.5m summer move from FC Copenhagen, but Malky Mackay is more likely to stick with Fraizer Campbell as the loan striker in a familiar 4-5-1 formation. 

MATCH OFFICIALS
Referee: Michael Jones 
Assistants: G Beswick, M Scholes 
Fourth Official: Mike Dean

HEAD-TO-HEAD RECORD
Palace winsDrawsCardiff wins
League271815
Play-Offs000
FA Cup000
League Cup311
Total301916

LAST MEETING AT SELHURST
These two sides played out a five-goal thriller the last time they locked horns in SE25, in September last year.

Cardiff City started the quicker and found themselves 2-0 up inside the first 15 minutes. First Aron Gunnarsson struck the opening goal with 13 minutes on the clock. And just two minutes later, Don Cowie doubled the Bluebirds’ advantage.

That’s the way it stayed until half time, but Palace, then managed by Dougie Freedman, produced a stunning second half comeback to take all three points.

First a Glenn Murray penalty got the Eagles back into the game seven minutes after the restart, before the frontman levelled the scores ten minutes later.

With Selhurst Park rocking, Murray then completed his hat-trick from the spot to put Palace ahead on 72 minutes – and the hosts held onto their slender advantage to secure a vital victory.

Both sides went on to secure promotion to the Premier League last season, setting up the first ever top flight meeting between the clubs. 

MATCHDAY INFORMATION
Supporters travelling to Saturday’s game by car should be aware that there remains no access to Clifton Road from Whitehorse Lane. 

BETTING
Palace win: 8/5
Draw: 9/4
Cardiff win: 17/10
Odds courtesy of SkyBet. CLICK HERE to place your bets, or sign-up today to receive a free £5 bet!
For a full betting preview, check out Tugby's Tips.

LIVE COVERAGE
Live commentary from Selhurst Park will be available on Palace Player. To log in or sign up to the service, CLICK HERE.

You can also keep track of the game with our minute-by-minute text updates by following Crystal Palace Football Club’s official Twitter account, @Official_CPFC.