After a 2-0 home defeat to the Hornet’s last weekend, Mauricio Pellegrino and his squad will be looking to bounce back tomorrow as they prepare to face Crystal Palace. But whilst Palace are sitting rock bottom, having failed to score in a single fixture this season, they have a new boss who will be aiming to give them the morale boost they so desperately need.
So to gain a better understanding of our upcoming opponents, we decided to speak to The Eagles Beak – an independent fan site that provides opinions on all things Crystal Palace.
TEB: Well, there’s only one place to start really; how was life under Frank De Boer?
Life under FdB wasn’t great. The appointment was always a bold but exciting one but the Premier League is unforgiving and has no mercy for anyone. He has learnt the hard way by trying to get a new ethos and formation implemented across the club needs time and the players to be able to play it. Perhaps he was foolish to think all players are capable and perhaps the club were foolish giving him the opportunity in the first place. Regardless, it was an experiment that has proved not worth taking. We wish FdB all the best for the future though of course.
TEB: What have you made of the Hodgson appointment?
Hodgson will see us okay I think. More of the type of manager we have employed in recent years and one that like Big Sam has a point to prove after being in charge of England. West Brom and Fulham fans talk highly of him and they are similar clubs to Palace so hopefully it will work out for us. He is from Croydon after all and it all began for him at Palace.
TEB: How did you rate your clubs dealings in the summer transfer window?
Not hugely busy but the additions on loan of Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Timothy Fosu-Mensah could both prove to be very valuable indeed. Amazed neither are considered first team players at their respective parent clubs in truth. The signing of Mamadou Sakho was the one all the fans wanted and thankfully that came through in the end. Still short in a few areas though particularly up front with Christian Benteke our only fit striker.
TEB: Who do you expect to be your key man this year?
I said it in the summer and will say it again now, Wilfried Zaha. The fact that we have missed him hugely since he was injured on opening day just supports that fact.
TEB: What would make for a successful season?
A successful season now would most definitely be staying up after the awful start we have had. We really are playing catch up but it is achievable with this bunch of players.
TEB: Which player from this Southampton side strikes the most fear into you, and who would you take to join the Eagles?
Not sure what kind of form he is in at the moment but I would have to say Nathan Redmond. I know Palace were interested in him when he was at Birmingham and he is still a player I’d like to see at the club. Quick talented winger with an eye for goal and one that should be watched carefully on Saturday.
TEB: You’re stuck on an island and the only company you can have is from a Palace player; who’s it going to be?
Great question! If you mean a current player I would have to say Mamadou Sakho. He comes across a cool fun kind of guy.
TEB: Which Palace player would you least want to get in a scrap with?
Damien Delaney or Mamadou Sakho
TEB: And finally, what do you think the score will be this Saturday?
It’s all set up to be a draw, so I will go for 1-1