Watford v Crystal Palace: Hornets ready to sting off-form Eagles

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The Premier League’s festive period kicks off at Vicarage Road this Boxing Day, where Watford will be hoping to knock some more stuffing out of a Crystal Palace side who’ve endured a tough calendar year. 

Alan Pardew paid the price for taking just 26 points from 36 Premier League games in 2016, a run that’s left the Eagles one point and one place above the drop zone.

And despite moving fast to appoint Sam Allardyce as Pardew’s successor, even that tonic won’t be enough to halt the south Londoners’ slide.

Walter Mazzarri’s charges are ticking along nicely in mid-table. Indeed, victory in the lunchtime kick-off would move the Hornets into eighth position.

And at 7/5, plenty will fancy the hosts to defeat a side who have already conceded 19 times on the road this season.

Palace are 19/10, while a draw can be backed at 9/4.

The visitor’s saving grace has been an ability to score goals, and impressively, only the sides occupying the top five have netted more than the Eagles

So it may make plenty of sense to back Watford to win and both teams to score at 15/4.

10 of Palace’s 17 games and nine of the Hornets have seen over 2.5 goals, which looks appealing at Evens.

Troy Deeney and Christian Benteke share the first goalscorer betting at 5/1, ahead of Watford duo Idion Oghalo and Stefano Okaka at 6s.

Sometimes dispensing with a manager can inspire a club in their next few games, but that seems unlikely here.

The hosts have only lost one of their last six home games, and Palace head to Vicarage Road having not kept a clean sheet away from home since this very day a year ago. How times change.

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