Premier League Preview: Will Crystal Palace Cope With The Swansea Frontline?

Both Crystal Palace and Swansea faced tough tasks in the last round of Premier League fixtures, playing Manchester United and Liverpool respectively. However, both teams may feel slightly aggrieved with not coming out of their fixtures with more than a loss and a draw.

Ashley Young won a dubious penalty against the Eagles, and after defending so resolutely, the South London boys will be desperately disappointed. Damien Delaney was a rock at the heart of Palace’s defence, making a total of 18 defensive contributions according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index.

Ian Holloway’s defence has been protected well by holding midfielder Mile Jedinak. The Australian has had a phenomenal season, making more defensive contributions, (tackles, blocks, interceptions, clearances) than any other player in the league.

Jedinak has been equally influential for Palace offensively, making 74 passes in the opposition half – this is more than any of his teammates.

A player who is desperate to make an impression for Crystal Palace is on-loan striker Marouane Chamakh. He appeared short of confidence at Arsenal, and it appears that he may be suffering a hangover from last season. The EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows that in his four appearances thus far this season, he has only had one shot at goal. have the Moroccan at an industry best 31/10 to score at any time on Sunday.

This is in contrast to Premier League new boy Dwight Gayle. He certainly isn’t afraid to take shots at goal, as no other Eagles player has taken as many shots as the former Peterborough man.

A real Jekyll and Hyde performance from Jonjo Shelvey against his former club was the main talking point in Swansea’s draw against Liverpool. He scored, and assisted 3 other goals, 2 of which were Liverpool’s, but according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, this doesn’t give his performance on Monday full justice. The midfielder completed 40 passes in the opposition half – more than any player on either side.

The EA SPORTS Player Performance Index also highlights how dominant the Swans were against Liverpool, as in addition to Shelvey, Ben Davies and Leon Britton were in the top 15 of players who completed passes in the opposition half.

Wilfred Bony may have only scored once so far this season for Swansea, but it is unlikely that defenders will be able to contain him for much longer. The striker has had 9 attempts at goal so far this campaign, despite only playing 199 minutes. His eye for goal can be put into context when looking at Michu’s record, as the Spanish superstar has mustered 10 attempts at goal in 360 minutes. You can find Bony at 13/10 with to score at any time against the Eagles.

Ashley Williams’ performance at the weekend demonstrated just how important he is to Swansea. The EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows that his 22 defensive contributions, measured on blocks, tackles, interceptions and clearances, was more than anyone else in the league. 

Data supplied by the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index. Select and manage your own team of stars at or with FIFA Ultimate Team for FIFA 14