|OPPONENTS||Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park|
|COMPETITION||FA Cup Fourth Round|
|DATE||Sunday 27th January 2018|
With most of our Cup games this season in the domestic competitions
being drawn in and around London, the travelling hasn't been too
onerous, which is just as well as we approach this match at Palace
with a depleted squad.
Missing Dele, Harry Kane and Heung-Min Son, losing Ben Davies and Moussa Sissoko on Thursday night didn't help things. Palace have a couple of injury issues, with Wayne Hennessey having a thigh problem as well as being investigated by the FA for being pictured giving a Nazi salute, Papa Souare still getting over a dislocated shoulder and Vicente Guaita suffering from a calf strain. However, with a battle to move his side up the Premier League, boss Roy Hodgson will have to decide no how strong he goes with his selection on Sunday. Without the benefit of a deep squad, with a number of players out on loan too, he will pick a spine that shows the first choices off, but might mix and match around that, perhaps boosted by the return of Christian Benteke to fitness.
Julian Speroni is likely to take the gloves, with a back four in front of him which will include Martin Kelly, who scored the winner against Spurs in the Fourth Round in first half injury time in 2016. It will be interesting to see if he risks some of his potential match-winners in Zaha and Townsend, as he might need them for league points in games ahead. It has become a dilemma for managers who might not think the can win the competition and in years gone by, they might have welcomed a cup run, but nowadays some appear happy to remove the Cup fixtures from their list. The lure of playing in the top flight with the associated riches it brings is now looked on more favourably then a piece of silver in the trophy cabinet for many and you can't blame them, as relegation might cost them their job.
I think that the changes Hodgson makes might be minimal, as he hasn't got a huge number of players to choose from, unless he throws some youngsters in.
Pochettino has the same considerations, with league games coming up and Son not back until midweek at the earliest, so fringe players might be called on. With some looking to get away on loan or for good, it is another aspect of the team selection that causes issues. If you find a buyer for a player, do you risk him in a game, possibly getting injured or do you leave them out and jeopardise the chance to progress. We saw GK Nkoudou come on last week to set up a goal for Harry Winks at Fulham, but now he is strongly linked with an initial loan move to Besiktas. Llorente has been mooted as returning to Athletic Bilbao and Vincent Janssen wants out, although I don't think there is much chance of him getting a look in. That only leaves the Academy players - Skipp, Sterling and Parrott - who have been with the squad over the last week. Skipp looks a comfortable player who can slot into the Premier League, while the other two are untested at that level, having shone in the Under-23 side.
Poch has enough to choose from to send out a strong side and it depends on how hungry they are to salvage something from this season after losing out to Chelsea on Thursday.
I am going to buck the trend
of 1-0 wins that have taken over the fixture between the two clubs
of late and hope Spurs will turn up and put the ball in the bag for
the next round at the first attempt.
|PREDICTION||Crystal Palace 1 Tottenham Hotspur 2|
|FA Cup Fourth Round||Kick off 16:00|
Tottenham Hotspur - (-)
Wickham 08m 25s
|Crowd : 19,491||Weather : Wet before game; breezy and chilly|
|Referee : Kevin Friend (Leicestershire)||Assistant Referees : Mr. Adam Nunn; Mr. Matthew Wilkes|
|Fourth Official : Roger East|
|VAR : Lee Mason||VAR Assistant: Adrian Holmes|
|Spurs kicked off and played towards the Holmesdale End in the first half.|
|Game time : - 90 + 8 minutes.|
Benteke (foul on Wanyama) 90+2
Zaha (foul on Lamela) 90+4
Foyth (foul on Schlupp) 59
Sanchez (foul on Townsend) 55
|Crystal Palace :||kit||Tottenham Hotspur :||kit|
Jordan AYEW 88)
Christian BENTEKE 70 )
Lucas MOURA (50
Kazaiah STERLING 81)
|Manager : Roy Hodgseon||Manager : Mauricio Pochettino|
|Sponsor : Mansion||Shirt sponsor : AIA|
|Kit Supplier : Macron||Kit Supplier : Nike|
Another cup game and another London derby and for the second time in four days, a cup exit.
This wasn't a typical Spurs
performance and Palace were more up for it than us, leaving us
trailing 2-0 at the break, when it should have been closer, then
shutting up shop in the second, despite Tottenham having a go in a
re-run of Thursday night's League Cup defeat at Chelsea.
A corner awarded against
Walker-Peters when it clearly came off Townsend prompted a spell of
Palace pressure, but it didn’t threaten the goal. With seven changes
from Thursday night’s game, Spurs were finding it hard to find some
fluid passing and Lucas Moura decided to take a 25-yard pop at goal
that Speroni couldn’t reach, but the shot cleared the bar by a foot.
Van Aanholt tried the same from a little further out, but Gazzaniga
was right behind it down at his right-hand post. From a botched
Spurs short corner, Palace broke with Townsend, but Skipp got back
to make an important intervention on the halfway line. It came in a
period of the game when neither side were hitting their targets with
passes. When Kyle Walker-Peters went up for a cross in the area and
pushed the ball away with his hand with Wickham behind him, it was a
straightforward task for Andros Townsend to stick the ball into the
net from the spot to put Spurs two behind with Gazzaniga diving left
as the ball went down the middle.
Another whimper of an exit from the FA Cup, albeit the team did give it a go in the second half, but never looked like scoring. If we end up in the top four at the end of the season, it will be forgotten, but with so few premier League teams in the hat for Round 5, it looked a good chance to go a long way in the competition.
|Match ball sponsors||-|
|Match programme sponsors||-|
|Match shirt sponsors||-|
|What you thought|
|Other scores in this round :|
|Bristol City||2||Bolton Wanderers||1||Friday|
|Brighton & Hove Albion||0||West Bromwich Albion||0||Saturday|
|Accrington Stanley||0||Derby County||1||Saturday|
|AFC Wimbledon||4||West Ham United London||2||Saturday|
|Doncaster Rovers||2||Oldham Athletic||1||Saturday|
|Shrewsbury Town||2||Wolverhampton Wanderers||2||Saturday|
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