Premier League: Palace out for another upset against Spurs

Published by on April 26, 2017

Crystal Palace vs Tottenham

Spurs will be under no illusions about the threat 12th-placed Palace pose, with Sam Allardyce’s side having beaten Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool in recent weeks. The Lilywhites have only lost once to the Eagles in the league since the latter came back up to the top flight, but defeat to Chelsea in the FA Cup semi-final may well have knocked Tottenham’s confidence.

A draw is at 16/5, but Mauricio Pochettino surely won’t allow his side to suffer another end-of-season capitulation. Spurs are at 11/4 to win by one goal, as Palace’s defence has been solid since the arrival of Mamadou Sakho. It’s going to be a huge test of Spurs’ mental strength to see if they can overcome the disappointment at Wembley against a side who are not going to make life easy for them.

Arsenal vs Leicester

Whatever Arsenal do, if Spurs beat Palace and win the North London Derby on Sunday, the Gunners will be finishing below them for the first time in 22 years. Arsenal got the better of Leicester last season – in their head-to-head games, anyway – and they’re at 6/4 to win with both teams to score.

Leicester are no longer living in fear of relegation, though their players still have a point to prove under Craig Shakespeare. Jamie Vardy has netted four in his last five league games and he’s at 2/1 to score in 90 minutes. The towering Olivier Giroud might be the sort of player you would expect to flourish against an outfit like Leicester, but while he’s at 7/2 to score first, he’s got a return of just one goal from his last six appearances.

Middlesbrough vs Sunderland

No-one is in a more desperate position than Middlesbrough and Sunderland, who have all but given up on survival. If the Black Cats don’t win here, they may as well start packing their bags. As always, their hopes rest on Jermain Defoe, who’s at a surprising price of 5/1 to score first.

Sunderland have the worst goal difference in the division, but that shouldn’t take too much of a hammering on Teeside. Their hosts have scored the least goals, recording an abysmal tally of just 23 from 33 played. A draw is at 23/10, or the marginally better organised ‘Boro are at 6/5 to win. It’s unlikely to be a showcase of quality, but there’s still a huge amount riding on it.