Manger quotes, player quotes, team news and prediction ahead of Everton v Crystal Palace in the Premier League
Everton Manager, Roberto Martinez: “We’ve got three games at home and at Goodison (Park) our form has been very good but we’re going to be heavily tested. You look at it on paper and Arsenal have got the best run-in, but the good thing about football is nothing works as it should be on paper. We’re excited that at this stage of the season we’ve got enough points to fight for that position and will try to take advantage of our home fixtures – that could be the difference of achieving it or not.”
Crystal Palace Manager, Tony Pulis: “I’m just thinking about Everton, and how we can get up there and try to take points. I don’t care as long as we stay up.”
Everton goalkeeper, Tim Howard: “The manager drilled into us that it would be tough. Now we can count them on one hand. We’re going to tick the games off. We’re in a good mental state. We’re performing well. We feel fluid and there’s a good energy in the dressing room. We won’t feel pressure on our back from Arsenal. Anything can happen. There are so many ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ but if we keep fighting we’ll finish strong so hopefully that can continue.”
Crystal Palace winger, Jason Puncheon: “If you look at the position that we were in when he came and what he’s done to this team – we all have the belief that we will stay in the Premier League now. We’re not safe until it’s mathematically impossible. We’ve just got to keep going until we reach that point. It was a great win, just like the two we had before, but we don’t get carried away. We’ve got to go to Everton and then West Ham after that, so we’ve got two tough away games in the next week.
Everton v Crystal Palace Team News:
Pulis should have an almost fully fit squad to choose from with the only doubt surrounding Kagisho Dikgacoi who was withdrawn early on at the weekend. Everton meanwhile will be missing a host of key players with Steven Pienaar, Darron Gibson and Arouna Kone, defender Bryan Oviedo (broken leg) and loanee Lacina Troare (hamstring) all out while Phil Jagielka is still not ready to return to action following a hamstring injury.
Everton will head into the game in stunning form. The Toffee’s are currently on a run of seven straight wins with their most recent success coming in a scrappy 1-0 win over Sunderland secured through an own goal from Wes Brown. However the victory was important for the club as it showed they can win ugly if needs be following the plaudits directed their way in the wake of the 3-0 win over Arsenal six days earlier.
Palace are also in good form and will head into the clash with nine points collected from their last three games. Pulis’ men have beaten Chelsea, Cardiff and Aston Villa to climb to 12th in the table, seven points clear of the danger zone.
The two clubs drew 0-0 when they met in November and given the form both sides are in at the moment, expect another share of the spoils but this time with goals.