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Premier League

  • 26 December 2013
  • • 15:00
  • • Villa Park, Birmingham
  • Referee: H. Webb
  • • Attendance: 37752
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Aston Villa - Crystal Palace Preview: Hosts on a three-game losing streak

Aston Villa - Crystal Palace Preview: Hosts on a three-game losing streak

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Paul Lambert's men have a poor home record, with just seven points taken from a possible 24 so far in 2013-14, though Tony Pulis's side have lost twice after a brief upturn in form

Aston Villa and Crystal Palace will both look to halt losing runs when they meet at Villa Park on Thursday.

The hosts have lost their last three Premier League matches, scoring just one goal in the process, and have slipped to 13th in the table.

Five places below them are Palace, who have been beaten in their last two outings after showing signs of revival following two consecutive victories under the guidance of new manager Tony Pulis.

After back-to-back wins against West Ham and Cardiff City, they suffered a narrow 2-1 defeat at Chelsea before slumping to a 3-0 reverse at home to Newcastle on Saturday.

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6/5 PaddyPower offer 6/5 for Aston Villa v Crystal Palace to feature over 2.5 goals
Victory on Thursday could see the Eagles men climb out of the relegation zone, depending on results around them and changes in goal difference, but a defeat may mean them returning to the bottom of the table.

These teams have not met in the league since May 2005, when an Andy Johnson double handed Palace a 2-0 home win, and they can be quietly confident of securing another three points, given Villa's poor form, even though they have lost seven of their eight away top-flight games this term.

As well as winning just once in their last six Premier League matches, Paul Lambert's side have picked up only seven points from a possible 24 at home this season.

Palace's hopes of taking something from the game have been hit by the absence of suspended striker Marouane Chamakh, though. Pulis's side are the lowest scorers in the division with just 11 goals but the Moroccan, having earned a recall following the departure of former boss Ian Holloway, has found the net in three of Palace's last four games.

Villa are hardly prolific up front either, averaging a goal a game and scoring just twice in their last five home matches. Christian Benteke, the club's leading goalscorer last season, has been out of sorts this campaign and is set to miss out on Thursday with a knee problem, while Lambert could also be without captain Ron Vlaar (calf).

Ashley Westwood is definitely unavailable after picking up five yellow cards.

Pulis is likely to welcome back Stuart O'Keefe (knock) and Kagisho Dikgacoi (hamstring) after they missed the defeat to Newcastle but Adlene Guedioura is some way off due to his broken ribs. Meanwhile, Jerome Thomas, Jack Hunt, Paddy McCarthy and Glenn Murray are all long-term absentees for Palace.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Aston Villa

Crystal Palace

Wins
2
1
2
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Aston Villa FC AST
Aston Villa FC Aston Villa
Draw
Crystal Palace FC CRY
Crystal Palace FC Crystal Palace
61%
20%
19%

Top 3 Predictions

Aston Villa FC AST
2 - 1
Crystal Palace FC CRY
Aston Villa FC AST
2 - 0
Crystal Palace FC CRY
Aston Villa FC AST
1 - 1
Crystal Palace FC CRY

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