- Crystal Palace faces challenges, including Marc Guéhi’s “unfortunate cramp episode” and the absences of Will Hughes, Malcolm Ebiowei, Matheus França, and Michael Olise.
- Roy Hodgson hints at potential last-minute signings amid a concerning lack of options, especially following the departure of Wilfried Zaha.
- Arsenal look stronger with their commendable performance in London derbies last season and players like Bukayo Saka excelling.
Let’s be candid; the revelation of an “unfortunate cramp episode” at Bramall Lane involving Marc Guéhi almost writes its own comedic script. Thankfully for Hodgson and Palace, Guéhi’s seemingly delicate calves have recovered in time.
We also learn that Crystal Palace are without Will Hughes, Malcolm Ebiowei is absent having missed the fun from the beginning, the “young Brazilian boy” (as Hodgson affectionately calls Matheus França) is still “in rehabilitation”, and Michael Olise‘s hamstring continues to play hard to get fit.
In his pre-match press conference, Hodgson also hints at potential last-minute signings. One would expect the Palace management to have a backup plan, especially after parting ways with Wilfried Zaha. However, the idea of Parish and Freedman having “players up their sleeve” sounds more like a magician’s trick than strategic planning.
Now, for some statistics: Crystal Palace have secured a mere three wins out of 23 against Arsenal at home.
In contrast, Arsenal’s strong performance in London derbies and their commendable away record last season see them as strong favourites.
As the Monday night game approaches, the odds do indeed favour Arsenal even though they’ve yet to win on a Monday night under Mikel Arteta.
Hodgson’s team will be hoping to have more than just cramp prevention tactics prepared. But if they don’t, Arsenal fans are set for a delightful evening. Onwards and upwards!