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Arsenal VS Crystal Palace – LIVE Reddit Soccer 4/4/2022

Arsenal VS Crystal Palace – LIVE Reddit Soccer 4/4/2022

Arsenal travel to Selhurst Park on Monday, hoping to build on their narrow victory over Aston Villa from before the international break. They are facing a daunting task against a Crystal Palace side managed by Gunners legend Patrick Vieira. Mikel Arteta’s men have done a marvellous job since the turn of the year. They have expertly made use of the fixture list, overpowering every inferior side to emerge as one of the frontrunners in the race for the fourth spot.

Arsenal’s record against top sides leaves a lot to be desired, but they deserve credit for remaining resilient and clinical against lower-ranked opponents. Arteta will be hoping for a similar output when his side takes on Palace on Monday. It is a must-win encounter for the visitors, especially with Tottenham Hotspur breathing down their necks. Crystal Palace, though, are no slouch. They are unbeaten in their last six competitive matches, notably booking a place in the FA Cup semi-finals in the process.

Arsenal may also miss out on Takehiro Tomiyasu yet again as the Japanese international has not been spotted during training. His continued absence guarantees a place for Cedric Soares in the starting XI. Hence, there shouldn’t be any defensive changes from the side that faced Aston Villa before the international break. Arteta has kept a settled side for quite a while now. So it is difficult to envision any changes elsewhere either, with Thomas Partey set to continue his midfield partnership alongside Granit Xhaka.

In the attack, Arsenal will be boosted by the return of Bukayo Saka, who has recovered from COVID-19 and has featured in training heading into this contest. He remains a guaranteed starter on the right flank, with Martin Odegaard and Gabriel Martinelli set to complete the club’s attacking trifecta. Alexandre Lacazette should lead the line, as usual. Although the Frenchman has scored only one goal since the turn of the year, his leadership and work ethic have been critical in driving this Arsenal team.

Although the Eagles are currently 12th in the Premier League table, they have what it takes to pull off a surprise against their fellow London rivals, having held them to a 2-2 draw in the reverse fixture back in October. Arteta’s men cannot afford a similar result this time around and are likely to come out all guns blazing at Selhurst Park this Monday.

With Olise and Zaha missing, Odsonne Edouard and Jordan Ayew could be given starts out wide, thus forming a Palace front three comprising mainly of centre forwards. It will be interesting how this could impact the game, especially when it comes to probing the opposition defence.

There shouldn’t be any changes in the middle of the park, with Eberechi Eze partnering with Conor Gallagher in the advanced midfield positions. They will be covered by the astute defensive presence of Cheikhou Kouyate, although Luka Milivojevic could be a dark horse for this game. Milivojevic is an expert in set-pieces, and given the lack of aerial prowess among the Arsenal defenders, it could be an interesting avenue for coach Patrick Vieira.

Speaking of defence, Vieira has very little reason to make any changes to the side that secured a 4-0 win over Everton in the FA Cup just before the international break. Joachim Andersen, in particular, could play a vital role with his technical ability on the ball, whereas the onus will be on Nathaniel Clyne and Tyrick Mitchel to offer width going forward.

One week on from being inducted into the Premier League’s Hall of Fame for his endeavours as the driving force of Arsenal’s midfield, Patrick Vieira will surely envisage no better way to celebrate the accolade than by getting one over his former club, and his current squad are no pushovers.

The Eagles boss will hope that the recent international break has not disrupted his side’s momentum, as Palace strung a six-game unbeaten run together in all tournaments and advanced to the semi-finals of the FA Cup after putting four unanswered goals past Everton, with Chelsea now lying in wait at Wembley.

With Brighton & Hove Albion failing to get the better of Norwich City on Saturday, Palace remain 12th in the rankings at the time of writing, and top-half side Aston Villa are only two points ahead of them following their recent loss to Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Keeping three clean sheets on the bounce in all competitions is just what the doctor ordered before Palace try to quell Arsenal’s youthful attacking forces, but for all of their resilience in recent weeks, a record of two wins from their last 10 Premier League matches is still underwhelming.

Furthermore, the goalless draw with Man City stretched their winless run at Selhurst Park in the Premier League to five games since overcoming Norwich City on December 28, and Arsenal have been nothing if not ruthless on rival turf since the turn of the year.

Once again irking rival supporters and players with their joyous celebrations at Villa Park – Ashley Young in particular did not take kindly to those in yellow expressing their delight – Arsenal ground out another hard-fought but crucial victory to remain in the driving seat for a top-four finish.

Bukayo Saka’s well-taken strike settled the contest before the half-time whistle blew – although Emiliano Martinez, to the amusement of Arsenal fans, possibly should have done better – and stand-in goalkeeper Bernd Leno was mobbed by his teammates after a vital save right at the death.

Having posted three wins from four in the month of March, Arteta’s feats were recognised with his second manager of the month award, and while the Spaniard’s side are clinging onto fourth spot at the time of writing, Tottenham Hotspur could temporarily usurp them with victory over Newcastle United on Sunday.

Arsenal’s games in hand, of course, cannot be overlooked – although they face two daunting challenges with Chelsea and Manchester United before the end of the month – and their postponed North London derby with Antonio Conte’s side is yet to be rescheduled.

Nevertheless, the Gunners have stuck to the task at hand admirably with six wins from their last seven in the Premier League, and they have also triumphed in each of their last five away from home in the top flight – not since 2013 have they enjoyed a longer streak on the road in the competition.

However, Arteta’s men had to rely on a last-gasp Alexandre Lacazette equaliser to salvage a 2-2 draw against Palace at the Emirates – the fifth stalemate in the sides’ last seven meetings – but Arsenal’s young guns starred in a 3-1 Selhurst Park win last May.

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