In-form Arsenal will have aspirations of a place in the top four when they travel to Selhurst Park to take on Crystal Palace later today.
The Gunners have won four of their last five league games, conceding just three goals in the process and keeping three clean sheets. The run of results has pushed them to the brink of the top four with Arsene Wenger’s men just a point behind fourth place Southampton, and two points off 3rd from top, Manchester United.
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Wenger has a good recent record against Palace winning seven and losing none of the last 10 meetings with their fellow Londoners, in all competitions.
Furthermore the Gunners are unbeaten in their last 11 visits to Selhurst Park while their hosts have won just seven of their 29 Barclays Premier League home London derbies. The Eagles last beat Arsenal in 1994 when they won 2-1 at Highbury in the Premier League.
Palace are currently 13th in the table with three wins and a draw from their last five. Last time out however they bowed out of the FA Cup, going down 2-1 to Liverpool. Their recent good form means they are five points clear of the relegation zone.
Alan Pardew is set to be boosted by the return of captain Mile Jedinak. The midfielder is available again after recovering from the ankle injury he picked up on international duty at the Asia Cup.
The Eagles will also have James McArthur available however on-loan striker Yaya Sanogo is ineligible to play against his parent club.
Arsenal meanwhile have Jack Wilshere available again for the first time since he injured ankle ligaments against Manchester United in November however Hector Bellerin, Mathieu Flamini and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are doubts.