Crystal Palace vs. Sheffield United
Will Crystal Palace be the victim the Sheff needs to climb to the top 5 of the table?
There is a lot of tension between the teams that occupy positions 5 to 7 of the Premier League table since all are tied with 34 points. Sheffield currently ranks 8th with 33 points. The match against Crystal Palace is vital to the aspirations of the Sheffield to conquer a place that allows access to continental tournaments.
Let’s start by analyzing the Selhurst Park team, where this game will be played on February 1. Crystal Palace has a record 3 draws, a win and a loss in their last 5 games. The recent defeat of the Palace was against one of those I consider the best teams in the Premier League Southampton. The Saints are capable of causing problems even the Big 6 teams, and The Eagles were their most recent victim who they defeated 2-0. The Saints were superior throughout the game achieving 6 direct shots to the goal of the Palace and 56% of possession of the ball. Nathan Redmond would be in charge of scoring the first for Southampton in the 22nd minute, thanks to Jack Stephens’s assistance. Southampton would secure their victory at minute 48 with a goal from Stuart Armstrong. The Crystal Palace attackers do not appear to have participated in this match since the Palace failed to achieve a single direct shot at McCarthy’s goal. This result caused an interesting movement in the table since Southampton jumped to 9th place, while the Palace fell to 11th place.
The Sheffield currently in the 8th position of the table comes to this match with a record of 2 wins, 2 losses, and 1 draw in their last 5 games. They last match was for the fourth round of the FA Cup, where they faced and defeated Millway 0-2. The Millway may seem like a small team from the Championship league. But if we carefully analyze their performance, we discover that they have a winning streak of 5 games. Also, they are just two points away from entering the Championship Play-offs. Despite the excellent performance of the Millway in the Championship, the Sheff took a relatively easy victory at The Den. They dominated 52% of possession of the ball and made 4 direct shots. Muhamed Bešić would score the first one for the Sheff in the second half of the game, precisely at minute 62. The Millway managed to put some pressure and leave the Sheff players without space, but Oliver Norwood would handle to find an opening and end up securing the victory for Sheffield with a goal at minute 84.
The Crystal Palace has a better record, or one could say that they have more consistent performance in its last 5 games. They average 1.1 goals per game, while Sheffield has an average of 0.9 goals per game. The goalkeeper of the Crystal Palace seems to be more productive, achieving 3.7 stops per game, one-stop and a half more than the goalkeeper of the Sheff. This makes the Crystal Palace numbers look far superior to the Sheff. But instinct tells me they won’t achieve victory. Crystal Palace +250
Chris Wilder is doing a great job with Sheffield United, the team can press and fight teams like Manchester City. Eventought their record looks a bit inconsistent, this is because they risk more on the field and attack with a greater passion. For this reason, Sheff is likely to win this match. Sheffield United +150