Crystal Palace vs Arsenal - as it happened: Eagles storm past lifeless Gunners at Selhurst Park

Live Blog

Re-live all the action from Selhurst Park

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The Independent Football

Crystal Palace host Arsenal in a Premier League clash on Monday night, with Arsène Wenger’s side looking to close the gap on the top four.

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Live Updates

Good evening and welcome to the Independent's live coverage of tonight's Premier League clash between Crystal Palace and Arsenal.
 
The Eagles head into tonight's match on the back of a 3-1 defeat by Southampton but remain in good stead following a four-match winning run which has seen them climb up the league.
 
As for Arsenal, Arsene Wenger's men sit seven points off Manchester City in fourth but, with three games in hand, the side will feel confident that they can secure yet another season of Champions League.
 
Team news to follow...
Selhurst Park is looking particularly ominous ahead of this evening's 8pm kick-off...
 
 
But Big Sam isn't letting a few grey clouds darken his mood. He knows that a win tonight would take his side six points clear of the drop zone.
 
 
And here's the team news for all you traditionalists:
 
Crystal Palace: Hennessey, Ward, Kelly, Sakho, Schlupp, Milivojevic, Cabaye, Zaha, Puncheon, Townsend, Christian Benteke.
Subs: Speroni, Flamini, McArthur, Fryers, KaiKai, Sako, Delaney. 

Arsenal: Martinez, Bellerin, Mustafi, Gabriel, Monreal, Xhaka, Elneny, Walcott, Ozil, Welbeck, Sanchez.
Subs: Gibbs, Mertesacker, Ramsey, Giroud, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Coquelin, Macey. 

Referee: Michael Oliver (Northumberland) 
Claudio Ranieri is in the Sky Sports studio for this evening's game!
 
Here's some Ranieri #banter to whet your appetite:
 
 
Will the affable Italian go to town on the players who helped bring his Leicester reign to an ignoble end? Or will he maintain a dignified silence?
 
We're willing to bet it'll be the latter.  
As you were, then
 
No changes to either team, with Emiliano Martinez continuing in goal for Arsenal. The home side are just as they were for their 3-1 defeat to Southampton, the away side are just as they were for their 3-0 victory over West Ham.
 
That doesn't bode particularly well for the Selhurst faithful. 
Parish's programme notes
 
Palace won their last home match 1-0 against Watford - not that their chairman, Steve Parish, was particularly pleased. He describes the game as a "turgid affair" in his programme notes this evening, and urges his team to pull something out the bag this evening.
 
 
 
So back to the football, the last home game against Watford was a turgid affair but we managed to get the all-important goal to secure the win, and tonight I'm sure will be a much more exciting game.
 
Let's hope we can come away with a result against what is a very good Arsenal team, despite what people are saying. 
 
Claudio Ranieri has insisted he can't believe that the players turned on him: "No, I can't believe it. I can't believe that my players killed me. No. No. No."
 
He did hint, though, that someone behind the scenes was to blame for his dismissal.
 
"Maybe, could be somebody behind me, maybe this people this year they push a little more. 
 
"I don't want to say [who]. I'm a serious man."
 
 
Uh oh
 
Here's a killer stat: Arsene Wenger has never lost a Premier League game against Crystal Palace, winning eight and drawing three.
 
#WengerIn?
Selhurst Park is a hive of activity as kick-off draws closer.
 
Here's your freshly printed programmes stacked up for the punters:
 
 
 And here's your obligatory half n' half scarf merchant:
 
 
We're hearing that Arsenal have had a spot of bother getting to the stadium in time. 
 
Their Death Star looking team coach has only just arrived at Selhurst Park, meaning it's going to be a quick warm-up for Alexis and co. 
 
 
 
You had one job, driver!

Stat attack!

  • Crystal Palace have just two wins in 33 top-flight matches against Arsenal (D9, L22).
  • The Eagles have scored six goals in their last 12 league games against the Gunners.
  • Arsene Wenger has never lost to Palace in the Premier League (W8, D3).
  • Sam Allardyce has lost nine of his last 10 Premier League games against Wenger.
It's all about simplicity tonight for Wenger. "There's nothing to calculate, we want to win the next game. The task is clear. We focus on the game."
 
I think he's made himself clear there...
Crystal Palace manager Sam Allardyce struck an optimistic note ahead of today's game. 
 
"I can see it going right to the wire, in the end it will be about who can hold their nerve and that is the big key to success when the pressure is on you at this level.
 
"When the bell starts ringing you know the time is running out. You've got to be very brave and stand up and be counted in those situations if you want to survive and be in the Premier League next year."
Right, the players are out on the pitch! We're moments away. Stay tuned!
1 min: And that's kick-off! We're under way!
2 min: Bellerin gets caught in possession on the right-flank and Townsend skips away. He bolts forward and plays Benteke ahead of him who fizzes in a promising delivery but Martinez deals with it. Crisis averted.
3 min: More promising play from Palace. A free-kick from deep is pumped forward into the Arsenal box and it's Benteke who gets there first. He brings it under control with his first touch and cuts it back to Cabaye on the edge of the Arsenal box. He shoots... but it's a howler and sails toward row Z. Arsenal goal-kick.

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What time does it start?

The match will kick off at 8.00pm at Selhurst Park.

Where can I watch it?

It will be shown live on Sky Sports 1, with coverage starting at 7.00pm.

Previous meetings

Arsenal 2 Crystal Palace 0
Premier League, January 2017

Arsenal 1 Crystal Palace 1
Premier League, April 2016

Crystal Palace 1 Arsenal 2
Premier League, August 2016

Form

Crystal Palace: WWWWL

Arsenal: WLLDW

Odds

Provided by 888.com

Crystal Palace: 18/5

Arsenal: 8/11

Draw: 31/10

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