Liverpool will be looking to follow up their opening day win with three points against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park tonight. The Reds were fantastic last week, beating West Ham 4-0 at Anfield, displaying the fast, attacking football that has been their trademark under Jurgen Klopp. Once again, it was the terrific front three of Mo Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino that made the difference, whilst Daniel Sturridge continued his fine pre-season form by scoring just seconds after coming on.
Klopp’s men are tipped to challenge Manchester City for the title this season and even at this early stage they won’t want to lose ground to Pep Guardiola’s side who look as though they could be rampant once again this season. However, it won’t be easy for the Merseyside outfit at Palace, a ground they have memorably struggled on in the past.
Wilfried Zaha is a massive threat for the Eagles with his pace, power and dribbling ability and there’s no doubt that he could play for one of the top six sides in the country. His presence alone means that Liverpool will have to be on guard defensively, whilst Roy Hodgson also has his sides well organised and hard to beat. They can counter very well and backed by a raucous home crowd they will fancy their chances of an upset on their own patch.
Crystal Palace vs Liverpool Prediction: Crystal Palace 1-3 Liverpool
Whilst there’s no doubt that this will be a challenging game for Liverpool, the reality is that the visitors should have too much for them all over the park. Alisson’s arrival, combined with Virgil van Dijk’s first full season at the club means they are strong at the back, whilst going forward they have so many options. The renowned front three have so much pace, technique and movement that they are virtually impossible to stop, whilst Naby Keita brings even more energy and creativity to the midfield.
Therefore, we think they will get all three points to make it successive wins in the Premier League. Palace will make it tough for them and they have enough about them to score a goal, and their confidence will be high after they beat Fulham last week in the opener. Ultimately though, Liverpool’s additional quality should be decisive.
Our recommended tip: Liverpool win & Over 2.5 goals
Yet, when it comes to punters finding an angle for this bet, there isn’t much value on just backing a straight Liverpool win. Instead, you can find a decent bet by including goals too. As we saw last week, Liverpool are a side that are pretty relentless in their attacking. They play with a real intensity, go for sides and aren’t the sort to slow down after they take the lead, so they will be a great watch for the neutral this season.
With that in mind, there should be over 2.5 goals in this match and we expect the visitors to come out on top in what will be a high-scoring game. The quality of attacking options means that we should be in for an attacking clash but, as mentioned, the gulf in class should tell even at Selhurst Park.
This will be the 52nd meeting between the two sides and there’s no doubt that it’s a fixture that has brought up a lot of notable moments over the years. Liverpool beat Palace 9-0 back in ’89 however they have also suffered when in London just a few years ago in a clash that will be remembered forever. The Reds were going for the title and were 3-0 up before an incredible very late second-half comeback saw Palace draw 3-3, realistically ending Liverpool’s title hopes.
Yet, it’s a fixture they have dominated on the whole, winning 27 of the previous encounters. Additionally, they have a good recent record at Selhurst Park. Whilst they lost the year after that 3-3 draw, since then they have gone on to win four games in a row, including an FA Cup tie, with Liverpool winning 2-1 last season.
As for their recent games, the Eagles secured a very impressive 2-0 win at newly-promoted and big-spending Fulham at Craven Cottage in what was an entertaining clash. Meanwhile, it was one-way traffic for Liverpool, who thumped West Ham 4-0, so both sides will approach this game with real confidence.
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Players to watch: Wilfried Zaha & Mo Salah
It would be unfair to say that Hodgson’s side are a one-man team, however there’s no doubt that they are very reliant on one man – Wilfried Zaha. They didn’t win a game without the academy graduate last season and he transforms Palace from a decent side into a very dangerous one. He is a top player, unstoppable at times with his pace, power and skill and once again Palace will be hoping he can deliver for them in a big game. Liverpool will be aware of his threat and will understand that stopping him is crucial to getting a result. But, that’s a lot easier said than done but how Zaha plays will seriously impact this result.
Liverpool have a lot more threats going forward but the main man is Salah. He enjoyed a superb debut season which saw him considered as one of the top three players in the world in the eyes of many. Salah is direct in his play, intelligent with his movement and cool in front of goal. He will always get chances in this attacking side and has a great understanding with Mane and Firmino which is a worry for Palace. Whilst he starts on the right-hand side of the three, he has freedom to roam and sniffs out chances with his goalscoring instincts.