Charlie Nicholas explains why he's worried for Crystal Palace

Wilfried Zaha playing for Crystal Palace

The Sky Sports pundit has been discussing the south London side ahead of their clash with Chelsea.

Charlie Nicholas says he is worried for Crystal Palace, according to Sky Sports.

Indeed, the pundit feels the loss of Yannick Bolasie to injury - he is expected to be out for a month - is a 'gigantic blow' for the Eagles.

Palace host Chelsea going in their first Premier League clash of 2016, where they will be without both Bolasie and Connor Wickham.

And Nicholas told Sky: "What a season Palace are having but can they cope without the likes of Yannick Bolasie and Connor Wickham?

"Bolasie's loss is a gigantic blow. He's got so much ability and teases and torments defences, he's a big miss and I'm worried that, without him, they don't score a lot of goals."

 2015/16 DribblesChances CreatedAccurate CrossesMinutes Played
Riyad Mahrez 63 35 21 1,464
Wilfried Zaha 60 21 16 1,255
Ross Barkley 56 35 15 1,658
Eden Hazard 54 45 4 1,372
Sadio Mane 49 27 12 1,461
Yannick Bolasie 47 12 14 1,258

As Opta stats show, Bolasie is indeed one of the Premier League's most potent dribblers. Only five players have beaten their man more times than the Crystal Palace winger - and four of them have played more minutes.

What is most interesting, however, is the fact Wilfried Zaha (having played roughly the same amount of minutes) has beaten his man far more times than Bolasie, created more chances and landed two more crosses.

Surely, then, the 23-year-old can compensate for Bolasie's absence?

Obviously, the latter offers a lot for Palace and defenders can certainly cope with Zaha a lot better when Bolasie isn't running at them at the same time. Palace's lack of goals since their main winger's injury, meanwhile, says a lot...

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