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

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

Already-relegated Sheffield United welcome Roy Hodgson's Crystal Palace to Bramall Lane on Saturday, as they look to bounce back from a heavy 4-0 defeat last time out and build some momentum going into the Championship next season.

The Blades have remained at the foot of the Premier League table for the majority of the campaign, and they will hope to limit the damage with a second victory from their last three games in the top flight.

Match preview

Sheffield United caretaker manager Paul Heckingbottom pictured on March 14, 2021© Reuters

While the Blades were condemned to relegation following a 1-0 defeat to Wolverhampton Wanderers earlier in April, they looked renewed without pressure in their following game at home to Brighton & Hove Albion.

David McGoldrick netted the only goal of the game in the 19th minute, and the South Yorkshire outfit held on to seal their first victory under the temporary charge of Paul Heckingbottom.

However, they came crashing back down to reality last time out, as a Gareth Bale hat-trick and a Son Heung-Min goal sealed a dominant 4-0 win for Tottenham Hotspur when the Blades made the trip to London.

Heckingbottom stepped up to take charge of the Sheffield United first team in March following the departure of promotion-winning manager Chris Wilder, with the side sat at the foot of the table, and he has failed to change their fortunes with just three points from his seven games in the hot seat.

He definitely has an unenviable task though, as the Blades have now lost 27 of their 34 top-flight games, while they possess the worst attacking record in the league with just 18 goals.

With Heckingbottom now on the four-name shortlist for Sheffield United's next permanent manager, he will be desperate to finish the season in a stronger way to boost his chances of securing the job going into the Championship.

The Blades take on a Crystal Palace side who will be looking to break a three-game Premier League losing run on Saturday.

Crystal Palace's Michy Batshuayi celebrates scoring their first goal against Everton in the Premier League on April 5, 2021© Reuters

The Eagles suffered a 2-0 defeat to league leaders Manchester City at Selhurst Park last time out, as second-half goals from Sergio Aguero and Ferran Torres condemned Roy Hodgson's men to a third straight Premier League loss.

They have not been blessed with a generous run of fixtures in the last few weeks though, with the other two defeats coming to a rejuvenated Chelsea side and third-placed Leicester City.

Despite their recent run, the South London outfit have again managed to stay well clear of the relegation zone this season, currently sitting in 13th spot with just two points required to confirm their survival for the seventh consecutive campaign.

Hodgson will be hopeful of his side ending their poor run on Saturday, as they travel to Bramall Lane with the aim of doing the double over the league's basement side, after an early Jeffrey Schlupp finish and an eye-catching Ebere Eze solo goal sealed a 2-0 win at Selhurst Park in January.

Sheffield United Premier League form:
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • L

Sheffield United form (all competitions):
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • L

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

Team News

Crystal Palace's Eberechi Eze celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates on January 30, 2021© Reuters

Paul Heckingbottom's selection worries have been somewhat reduced recently, as centre-back Chris Basham was fit to start the Tottenham game, while midfielder Sander Berge made an appearance off the bench for the first time since he picked up a serious hamstring injury in December.

However, forwards Oli McBurnie and Billy Sharp and defenders Jack O'Connell and Jack Robinson are all expected to miss the remainder of the season through injuries.

O'Connell in particular has been a huge loss for the Blades this season, having been absent since September, with the likes of Ethan Ampadu, Kean Bryan and Enda Stevens all deputising on the left-hand side of the back three throughout the season.

David McGoldrick is expected to lead the line, having netted seven of their 18 league goals this season.

Crystal Palace's defensive options have been heavily hit recently, as Mamadou Sakho, James Tomkins and Nathan Ferguson all remain out, while Gary Cahill was fit enough to make the bench last time out.

Meanwhile, midfielder James McArthur and forward Connor Wickham will remain out of action.

Cheikhou Kouyate and Scott Dann are expected to partner up at the back, while Christian Benteke and Wilfried Zaha will lead the attack with the support of Ebere Eze.

Sheffield United possible starting lineup:
Ramsdale; Baldock, Egan, Basham; Bogle, Norwood, Fleck, Osborn, Stevens; McGoldrick, Brewster

Crystal Palace possible starting lineup:
Guaita; Ward, Kouyate, Dann, Mitchell; Townsend, Milivojevic, Riedewald, Eze; Benteke, Zaha

SM words green background

We say: Sheffield United 0-1 Crystal Palace

Sheffield United have struggled for goals this season, while only keeping three clean sheets in 34 Premier League outings, and we see those trends continuing with a narrow home defeat on Saturday.

Crystal Palace should see this as a great opportunity to return to winning ways and confirm their survival after a tough spell of fixtures.

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

Watch the Sports Mole Football Shorts prediction for this game below:

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Sheffield United caretaker manager Paul Heckingbottom pictured on March 14, 2021
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