Everton to answer Arsenal’s battle cry with Palace win to nil

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The see-saw battle for Champions League football swings Everton’s way after Arsenal’s victory against West Ham, but the Toffees will have no trouble sliding the bucket of pressure right back to Arsene Wenger against Crystal Palace.

Roberto Martinez’s men have built a strong case for a top-four finish during a run of six straight league wins, which has seen them close the gap to Arsenal in the last Champions League spot to just a point.

With a game in hand, Everton can jump ahead of the north Londoners with a seventh consecutive victory and at 2/5 with Ladbrokes, that looks highly likely.

Goodison Park fans haven’t seen their side lose at the ground in any competition since Boxing Day and a triumph over Tony Pulis’ travellers would be the club’s 10th on the spin in front of the Toffees’ faithful.

The Eagles, who are 17/2 for victory, go into the game with their own daisy chain on the go having won on their last three outings. But as they haven’t taken a single away point off any side that sits above them in the table, cant’ have too much hope of extending the run.

In fact, Palace have scored just three goals in the nine trips they’ve made to sides that currently occupy higher Premier League places than them and have failed to find the net in five of their last seven away from Selhurst Park.

The 1/1 about an Everton win to nil therefore looks a cracking bet for the match, while the form of Romelu Lukaku makes him the best option in the goal scorer market.

The on-loan Belgian has scored in four of his last six appearances at his temporary home and is 7/2 to score the game’s first goal – something he’s done four times in the top flight this season – and 4/5 to net anytime.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.