Aston Villa head to Selhurst Park this weekend looking to end their recent poor form.
They suffered a 2-1 defeat at home to Fulham last week, which came off the back off successive 4-1 defeats to Manchester United and Stoke City.
Good news for manager Paul Lambert is that Gabriel Agbonlahor, Fabian Delph and Karim El Ahmadi all appear fit to return.
Villa have gone five away games without a win and have taken only five points from their last eight trips. Crystal Palace have the fifth best defensive record in the league, so it looks set to be another stern test for Lambert’s men.
Palace boss Tony Pulis hopes to have a fully fit squad to choose from this week. Dwight Gayle made an appearance for the reserves in midweek but is unlikely to start.
Pulis has won six games from 10 at home since he took over and he will be looking to build on that when they host a Villa side lacking in confidence.
The loss of Christian Benteke is massive for Villa, but they could surprise a few people. No-one expected them to beat Chelsea at home, but they did.
With the teams level on 34 points, the victor should be well clear of the relegation places. The loser, assuming it isn't a draw, would certainly be dragged back into the relegation mire.
Palace come into this game after back-to-back wins and haven’t conceded a goal in either of those matches. This will give them confidence coming up against a Villa side severely lacking that area.
I think Palace will have too much for Villa and come out with a comfortable victory. They won their last two without conceding a goal and I can see this one being the same.
Crystal Palace 2-0 Aston Villa
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