Ahead of their match on Saturday (April 22), Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson will be looking to extend his 100% win record since his reappointment as manager.

Palace take on Everton next, a side five places below them.

Since Sean Dyche took charge, Everton have had some favourable results, including a win against league leaders Arsenal and a draw away to Chelsea.

But the Toffees are now winless in their last four games, and with time running out in the race to avoid relegation, Everton may look at Crystal Palace as a must-win game.

Dyche’s side face Newcastle, Man City and Brighton in their next five matches, so a positive result against Crystal Palace could be crucial to avoid the drop.

So how do Palace beat the Toffees?




If Palace are going to get all three points on Saturday, the wide areas are going to be crucial.

Typically, Sean Dyche likes to play with a narrow defence, encouraging the opposition to have control of the wide areas, to restrict play through the middle.

With Eze’s fine form recently, there may be a lot of focus from Everton to nullify the middle of the pitch where Eze operates, leaving space for Olise and Ayew.

A key battle for the game is likely to be Everton’s Mykolenko against Palace’s Olise.

Mykolenko is the slower out of the two Everton full backs, and Olise would be the favourite in that match-up to get by the Everton defender using his pace and tricky dribbling.

With Everton’s strength coming through the centre of the pitch, Olise and Ayew have a great opportunity to exploit the wider areas to create for The Eagles.

But Palace also need to be weary of Everton’s wingers. Throughout the season Everton have attacked through the wide areas of the pitch for 76% of their attacks, attacking just 24% of the time through the middle, according to whoscored.com.

So as much as Palace can cause a threat to Everton in the wide areas, The Eagles need to keep Dwight McNeil and Alex Iwobi contained.





Neither side are particularly dominant with the ball in the league this season, with both teams averaging 44% possession and below, according to transfermarkt.com.

As mentioned earlier, Everton are likely to sit in a low, compact block to counter the pace that Palace possess in their front line.

With the great form that The Eagles are in, they are likely to have more of the ball in the middle third of the pitch than they are used to.

Palace are going to have to make sure that they win the midfield battle and make use of the extra possession by finding their creative players in Olise and Eze as much as possible.




Saturday’s game may well see the return of Dominic Calvert-Lewin as he comes back from injury, and The Eagles need to be aware of the threat that the Everton man brings.

Along with James Tarkowski and Michael Keane, Calvert Lewin can provide an aerial threat that not many attackers in the Premier League can, and with Guehi and Anderson not being the strongest defenders aerially, Everton may look to attack The Eagles from set plays.

While Crystal Palace have been very strong defending from set pieces at Selhurst Park, 30% of Everton’s goals away from home have come from set-pieces, according to whoscored.com.

So with the imminent return of Dominic Calvert-Lewin, the aerial battle might be the most important battle to win, with Saturday’s game approaching.