CRYSTAL Palace face a Boxing Day trip to Watford looking to improve on their disastrous form of eight defeats in their last 10 games.
The Eagles currently sit in 17th place, just one point off the relegation places, and another defeat to could end Alan Pardew’s tumultuous reign.
The English manager enjoyed great success in his first season in charge as he led Palace to their highest ever Premier League finish of 10th place. Despite their struggles in the league the following season, further success came in the form of the club’s first FA Cup Final.
However, this serves as a distant memory to the supporters of a side that possesses the worst points per game ratio from England’s top four divisions in 2016.
As fears of relegation continue to grow, nothing other than three points will do for Alan Pardew’s side.
Their opponents, Watford, head into the fixture on the back of a similarly dismal recent run of form with four defeats in their last five games.
Walter Mazzarri’s side haven’t scored in their previous two games and fans will be hoping captain Troy Deeney can recapture his goalscoring form.
The striker has now gone 10 Premier League games without scoring and will be desperate to get himself on the scoresheet, especially considering highly-rated midfielder Roberto Pereyra will miss the clash.
Despite recent results, Watford’s home form will provide fans with plenty of reasons for festive cheer this Christmas. The Hornets have enjoyed success at Vicarage Road as of late, winning four of their last six home league games.
In stark contrast, Palace have only won twice on the road in 2016 and Watford at 7/5 with Betway looks a generous price.
As the season enters a crucial stage, both sides will be desperate to kick-off the busy festive schedule with three points.
Considering the teams’ struggling form, I expect a moment of individual brilliance to be the difference in a game lacking goals.
A cagey encounter awaits, and I’ll be selling total goals at 2.45 with Sporting Index.
Watford 7/5 with Betway
Sell total goals at 2.45 with Sporting Index