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Crystal Palace vs Chelsea – Lineups, Tactics, Preview, And Prediction

Crystal Palace vs Chelsea Preview

Chelsea have been the team in form throughout the season and are ahead of their competitors by a long distance, after just seven matches. They travel to Selhurst Park to enhance their unbeaten record, after a long international break in which the club’s stars have not delivered for their respective countries, which will make the players want to put the break behind them and focus on securing an ironclad win. Crystal Palace, their opponents, have eight points in seven matches, and are stuck in the standings rut, in which 13 teams are separated by a gap of just three points. The Eagles have taken time to get going in the league and will be smarting after their indifferent form in their last three games. Palace need a win to move into the top half of the table, but against Chelsea, they will be happy with a solitary point, owing to Chelsea’s ominous form that has torn teams to shreds.

Chelsea Costa

Chelsea Costa

Tactics

Chelsea are known for their counter attacking style of football. Jose likes to have a solid defence and a physical midfield to win back possession which in-turn leads to their trademark swift counter attacks. But this style of football may not work against defensive minded teams like Crystal Palace who themselves  like to sit back, observe pressure before using the speedsters in their team to counter attack. This is the exact reason why Chelsea struggled against defensive teams last season but this season, with the addition of Cesc Fabregas who can unlock any defence in the world and a clinical Finisher like Diego Costa, Chelsea can adapt their style and play an attacking game to breach tough defences like Crystal Palace. If Chelsea manage to score the crucial first goal, then you can expect them to swift to their counter attacking tactics again.

Chelsea’s individual stars such as Diego Costa, Cesc Fabregas, Branislov Ivanovic, among others will want to do their best, after coming under scrutiny for their country-level displays. However, getting back up to speed might be strenuous, as most of Chelsea’s players were on national duty during this break, whereas Neil Warnock will have been using his time to inspire the team going forth into the season. Chelsea have a good record against Palace and are favourites for this clash. Eden Hazard will want to stamp his class over this match, as he has had his best start to a season, yet has found himself in the shade of excellent displays by his contemporaries, Costa and Fabregas. Both Costa and Fabregas will have to put their not-so-great performances behind them and deliver for Chelsea. For Palace, much will depend upon the shoulders of Mile Jedinak, who has been the important lynchpin of their midfield, denying defences a way through and orchestrating attacks in midfield, while ensuring that Palace stay in control of possession. The defence will have to be at the top of their game, as their best performer in defence so far, Scott Dann, may not be taking part in this important game. Wilfried Zaha will want to get into form, after some ineffective performances for Palace lately.

Palace have a great opportunity to win this game, as Chelsea might take time to find their feet in the league again and may just be prone to an implosion, after flying high so far. The Eagles will also have maximum support, as they are playing at home. The Blues will look to get moving, prove that they are the favourites and keep the distance it has maintained from its rivals. Both sides will be looking to use this opportunity as another start, to push their performances into the next gear.

Predicted Lineup – Crystal Palace vs Chelsea

Predicted Crystal Palace line-up (4-3-3): Julian Speroni – Martin Kelly, Brede Hangeland Damian Delaney, Joel Ward – James McArthur, Mile Jedinak, Joe Ledley/Jerome Thomas – Yannick Bolasie/Wilfried Zaha, Frazier Campbell, Jason Puncheon

Predicted Chelsea line-up (4-2-3-1): Thibaut Courtois – Branislov Ivanovic, John Terry, Gary Cahill, Cesar Azpilicueta – Nemanja Matic, Cesc Fabregas – Willian/Andre Schürrle, Oscar/Ramires, Eden Hazard – Diego Costa.

Final score prediction: Crystal Palace 0-2 Chelsea