1 February 2020
Out-of-sorts Crystal Palace will be looking to post their elusive first Premier League (PL) victory in the new calendar year when they lock horns with Sheffield United at Selhurst Park this weekend.
It’s been a dismal start to 2020 so far for the home side, who failed to snatch a win in five games in all competitions since the turn of the year (D3, L2). Frustratingly for Palace, they’ve shipped the opening goal inside the first 32 minutes of play in four of those fixtures, failing to respond before the break each time. Also, the Eagles have won just twice in their previous eight PL home matches (D2, L4), with both of their wins in that period coming against the clubs from the bottom half of the table. Another huge problem for Roy Hodgson is that his players have scored one goal or less in seven of the above eight games, drawing a blank in the first half on each of those occasions.
Meanwhile, the visitors have yet to taste away defeat to a team outside the top-four (W3, D5), although they had to deal with a goal down (if any) in half of those fixtures (4). Also, no team has played out more away draws than Sheffield (7) to date, with five of them yielding the same 1-1 scoreline. But, like their upcoming rivals, the Blades have been far from impressive in the attacking third this campaign. Indeed, they’ve scored an average of one goal per PL away game, drawing a blank in three of 12 league trips so far. In turn, they’ve failed to score in three of their previous competitive away H2Hs with Palace (D1, L2), with both of their defeats in that three-game sequence coming via the identical 1-0 score.
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