Having promised so much in the first half of last season, Crystal Palace really fell away in the latter stages. And though they’ve continued in the same vein this term, there’s every reason to believe the Eagles are ready to soar once again, starting this weekend at Middlesbrough.
As Palace slid from fourth to 15th last season, it was glaringly evident that boss Alan Pardew needed to find himself a pukka Premier League striker.
Fast-forward to today and the Selhurst Park boss has two of them to call upon.
After opening with successive defeats to West Brom and Tottenham, Palace could finally call upon Christian Benteke against Bournemouth last time out, and the result was a first point of the season.
Pards has now added Loic Remy – on loan from Chelsea – to his offensive squadron, handing Wilfried Zaha and Andros Townsend two top-quality strikers to aim for, although the Frenchman is out for up to two months.
After seeing no Palace player score more than five league goals last season, Pardew has sought to rectify his goal-shy outfit, and Eagles’ fans should soon see the reward.
With Benteke now having time to settle, we can expect him to thrive at the south London side in much the same way he tormented defenders while at Aston Villa, and with Remy in the squad too, Pardew has tactical flexibility.
The big Belgian got a full 90 minutes in red and blue last time out against Bournemouth, and he should be much more in tune with his team-mates when Palace make the long trip up to Middlesbrough.
Granted, Boro are unbeaten so far upon their Premier League return, but at 5/2, Palace might well be worth backing as they look to kick-start their campaign.
Palace needed goalscorers, and now they’ve got them so we should see a revitalised side which takes to the Riverside this weekend.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.