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Preview: Everton vs. Crystal Palace - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Monday's Premier League clash between Everton and Crystal Palace, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Everton will aim to keep their fleeting hopes of a top-four finish alive when they welcome Crystal Palace to Goodison Park for Monday's Premier League encounter.

The Toffees entered the international break on the back of a 2-0 defeat to Manchester City in the FA Cup, while Palace managed to return to winning ways with a 1-0 triumph over West Bromwich Albion.

Match preview

Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti pictured on March 1, 2021© Reuters

Carlo Ancelotti's credentials in the Champions League are unparalleled, but the 61-year-old has seen his side's hopes of a top-four finish diminish after a spate of inconsistent results in the top flight.

Before succumbing to defeat at the hands of Man City in the FA Cup, Everton suffered a painful home loss to Burnley after being swept aside by Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, so Ancelotti would certainly have been grateful for the international break as he looks to reassess his faltering side's situation.

Everton are still in with a shot of breaking into the top four, but at the time of writing, they are five points adrift of fourth-placed Chelsea before they face West Bromwich Albion on Saturday lunchtime, although ninth-placed Arsenal are four points behind the Toffees, who cannot be usurped before they take to the pitch on Monday.

However, Monday's hosts have struggled to produce the goods on their own patch recently, as five of Everton's last seven home games in the league have ended in defeat, while their only victory in that run was a narrow 1-0 success over Southampton on March 1.

An increasingly growing absentee list is hardly an ideal situation for Ancelotti to have to work around as well, but with the prospect of influential playmaker James Rodriguez returning to action this week, the strike partnership of Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewin will hope to receive first-class service from the Colombian against Palace's leaky defence.

Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson pictured on March 7, 2021© Reuters

The ever-reliable Luka Milivojevic once again demonstrated his prowess from 12 yards to hand Crystal Palace a much-needed victory over relegation-threatened West Brom on March 13, as his 37th-minute penalty ensured that Roy Hodgson's side would take the spoils in a 1-0 win at Selhurst Park.

The Eagles had only taken two points from a possible nine in fixtures with Fulham, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur before that, but with only one defeat from their last five in the Premier League, Hodgson's side have done well to silence any whispers of a relegation dogfight.

Palace are not entirely safe just yet, but an 11-point chasm currently separates them from the drop zone with nine games left to play, although fixtures with Chelsea, Leicester City, Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool could spell danger for the Eagles if they fail to pick up points elsewhere.

Furthermore, Hodgson's side have only managed to win two of their last eight away matches and have only kept one clean sheet on the road all season - which came in a goalless stalemate with Arsenal in January - and their recent record against Everton would not exactly inspire confidence within the ranks.

Indeed, the Toffees have won six and drawn six of their last 12 Premier League meetings with Palace - including a 2-1 triumph at Selhurst Park back in September - and the Eagles' most recent victory over their upcoming opponents was back in September 2014.

Everton Premier League form:
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • L

Everton form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • L

Crystal Palace Premier League form:
  • L
  • W
  • D
  • D
  • L
  • W

Team News

Everton's James Rodriguez takes the knee on February 20, 2021© Reuters

As mentioned, Rodriguez has made great strides in his recovery from a calf problem and is in line to start on Monday over the likes of Gylfi Sigurdsson and Alex Iwobi, while Tom Davies is also expected to be fit.

However, fellow midfielders Abdoulaye Doucoure and Fabian Delph are out, as is first-choice goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, but the forgotten man Jean-Philippe Gbamin is finally ready to take part and could earn a spot on the bench.

Robin Olsen will hope to get the nod in goal as Pickford remains in the infirmary, while Ben Godfrey trained individually on Friday but is expected to be fine for this encounter.

Palace have an alarming number of absentees to contend with as well, as doubts persist over the involvement of Nathaniel Clyne, Tyrick Mitchell and Cheikhou Kouyate, while James McCarthur and Nathan Ferguson are definitely out.

Jairo Riedewald will likely keep his spot in the engine room with James McCarthy struggling to shake off a groin problem, while Andros Townsend could feature on the right after Eberechi Eze's exploits with the England Under-21s.

Jean-Philippe Mateta has struggled to make his mark on the Premier League so far, and the 23-year-old is unlikely to force his way into the team over Christian Benteke or Wilfried Zaha here.

Everton possible starting lineup:
Olsen; Holgate, Mina, Keane, Digne; Gomes, Allan, Davies; Rodriguez; Calvert-Lewin, Richarlison

Crystal Palace possible starting lineup:
Guaita; Ward, Kouyate, Cahill, Van Aanholt; Townsend, Riedewald, Milivojevic, Schlupp; Zaha, Benteke

SM words green background

We say: Everton 2-0 Crystal Palace

Palace are not exactly renowned for any sort of defensive solidity on the road, while Everton's recent home form is nothing to write home about either. Both managers must work around a worrying number of absentees for this match, but Hodgson just cannot seem to hack it against Everton, and we expect the Toffees to march to a convincing win on Monday.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or an away win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home/Away:data

Video prediction

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Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson pictured on March 7, 2021
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