To be played on Monday 5th May 2014 at 20:00. Venue: Selhurst Park, London.
Odds: Crystal Palace 17/2, Draw 4/1, Liverpool 2/5
Last season: N/A
Preview & injury news
Both teams had their winning runs halted last weekend, and both of them had implications on the visitors to Selhurst Park on Monday night. Palace had won five games on the bounce prior to their defeat to Manchester City as Tony Pulis guided the Eagles to safety, with many tipping the Welshman for the Manager of the Year gong. His main rival for that is in the opposing dugout in the form of Brendan Rodgers.
Prior to last Sunday's defeat to Chelsea at Anfield, which may have handed the initiative to Manchester City in the title race, Liverpool went on an 11 game winning run which has put them firmly in the mix to end their 24 year wait to become Champions. Depending on the result at Goodison Park on Saturday evening, it could be back in their hands come kick off. The Reds are two points clear of Chelsea, but if City win on Saturday evening they could leapfrog Liverpool on goal difference, meaning that they could also be as low as third.
On the injury front Crystal Palace don't seem to have any problems to worry about meaning they have a full squad to pick from, whilst the only notable absentee for Liverpool is Jose Enrique. He has missed much of the campaign with a knee injury but his rehabilitation is well underway.
Here are the top scorers from the two teams in the Premier League this season:
|Jason Puncheon||Crystal Palace||MF||7||32||2,431|
|Marouane Chamakh||Crystal Palace||FW||5||30||2,163|
|Dwight Gayle||Crystal Palace||FW||3||21||767|
Their average possession statistics:
And the amount of clean sheets they've kept:
5 players to watch
Tom Ince - Ince used to be on the books at Anfield as a youngster, and was linked with a move back to the club during his time at Blackpool. He joined Palace in the summer, and if given the opportunity, he could hurt his old side. If he is used the likelihood will be that he is used from the bench, as has been the case for much of the second half of the season.
Daniel Sturridge - Sturridge returned to the side as a second half substitute during the defeat to Chelsea, he didn't look 100% but with another week on the training field under the belt, he may well be ready to start against Palace this weekend. Both he and his team would like to see him in amongst the goals again.
Mile Jedinak - It is going to be a big job for Jedinak in the central areas as he is likely to have the responsibility to take charge of whoever may be playing at the front of the diamond in the Liverpool side - either Raheem Sterling or Philippe Coutinho. Can he excel against the pace, craft and creativity that they have, and thwart the visitors as a result?
Martin Skrtel - Skrtel and the rest of the Liverpool defence are bound to be in for a tough battle against a Tony Pulis side that will work hard, press the ball and probably rough up their opponents' back line. The Slovakian has been the Reds' stand-out performer at the back this season and will need to put in another good performance on Monday evening.
Scott Dann - He grew up in Liverpool and was linked with the club a couple of seasons ago but Dann is going to have his hands full with the strike duo that has 50 goals between them this season in the form of Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge. Can Dann step up to the mark?
Earlier on in the season
Liverpool 3-1 Crystal Palace, October 2013
It was Luis Suarez's first home game after his ban and he marked his return with a goal within the first quarter of an hour of the game as he managed to stab home whilst on the floor. The home side's lead was doubled only a couple of minutes later as Daniel Sturridge twisted and turned his way through the defence before firing low into the Palace net. Steven Gerrard added a third from the penalty spot after Raheem Sterling looked as if he was pulled back just inside the area. Dwight Gayle headed home from a Jose Campana free-kick with a quarter of an hour remaining and Liverpool could have had a fourth late on but Sturridge's shot cannoned off the post.