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Match Previews

Palace Preview: Battle-scarred Eagles face leaky Norwich City

30 December 2019

Norwich City haven’t kept a league clean sheet at Carrow Road in almost nine months.

Overcoming Queens Park Rangers 4-0 that day, the Canaries displayed their calibre and the ability that earned them a spot in the Premier League. But since their return to the top flight of English football, east Norfolk hasn’t witnessed a league shut-out since April 2019.

In fact, Daniel Farke’s men have conceded at least twice in each of their last nine Premier League home games - a record extended only by Wolverhampton Wanderers in 2012.

Though while the Canaries sit bottom of the Premier League as they welcome Crystal Palace in the clubs’ first game of 2020, Roy Hodgson’s men would be remiss to overlook the talents of their hosts.

This season - their first in the Premier League since 2015/16 - Norwich have defeated Manchester City and Everton and have drawn with Arsenal and Leicester City. Most recently, Farke’s charges drew with Tottenham Hotspur.

In fact, the majority of Norwich’s success this season has come against the odds - seven of their last 10 points have been from teams starting the day in the table’s top half. The other three came in a victory against Everton, who have since moved into the top 10. 

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Sitting just two points ahead of the Toffees in ninth, Palace will have to be aware. 

But Hodgson’s Eagles will take confidence from their home triumph over the Canaries, in which a Luka Milivojevic penalty and Andros Townsend strike late on helped Palace to seal three points in SE25.

Tactical overview

The Canaries typically field a 4-2-3-1 formation, with Teemu Pukki as the lone frontman. Holding nine goals to his name, Pukki is the Canaries’ top scorer so far and is fed by a fine supply from his midfield support.

Most notably, Emiliano Buendía created 29 chances for his Norwich teammates during December. Since 2003/04, that is the most a player has ever created in a single month.

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Team news

The Eagles still seem to be hit by injury, with seven first-team players being unavailable to face Southampton recently. 

Hodgson was without defensive options Gary Cahill, Scott Dann, Patrick van Aanholt, Joel Ward and Jeffrey Schlupp as well as Andros Townsend in midfield and Christian Benteke up-top.

Hodgson revealed that Martin Kelly played through a strain and Cheikhou Kouyate told Palace TV that he has been suffering from some discomfort in his groin.

SEE ALSO: Eye-catching top facts about Norwich City in the Premier League

Norwich are relatively fortunate with injuries at the moment. Defender Ben Godfrey and forward Josip Drmic are their only notable absentees.

Did you know?

This will be Crystal Palace’s 10th top-flight league game on New Year’s Day – the Eagles have won just one of their previous nine (D4 L4), beating Notts County 1-0 under Steve Coppell.

How to follow

Live TV

This match will be shown live on BT Sport ESPN from 17:15. Immediately after coverage ends, BT will be showing their Team of the Eighties documentary, which focuses on Palace's famous sides under Malcolm Allison and Terry Venables.

Palace Audio

Palace supporters all over the world can listen to live audio commentary of every Palace fixture in the 2019/20 season for as little as £1 per game on the official club app, mobile internet or on desktop.

Fans can buy a Monthly Pass (which auto-renews) at £4.49 per month or a 24-Hour Pass (for a single matchday) for £1.49, by clicking here

Find out more about Palace Audio here

Social media

You can check out our Instagram story for eye-catching footage of all of the pre-match build-up and our official Twitter page will be bringing you up-to-the-minute match updates, stunning photos and more.

The official app

The official Palace app’s match centre is the place to be for everything you need during the Norwich clash. With live stats and alerts, a running match commentary feed and lineups the moment they’re released as well as all an instant match report and post-match reaction from Palace TV, there’s no need to leave the app to follow the Eagles’ efforts.

Download our app for free here!

International fans

For fans following from abroad, have a look at our Worldwide TV Listings here. And if you're wondering where the nearest official fan club is to you, you can click here to find out.

Did you know you can become an International Member from just £45 and receive benefits such as guaranteed tickets for any home league game and exclusive live Palace TV streams for selected games? You can - by buying here!

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