Crystal Palace v Man City: Eagles to make champions work

Manchester City look to extend their lead at the top of the table on Monday night, but Paul Robinson doesn't expect them to have things all their own way.

Back in-form Eagles are flying

The Eagles are enjoying an excellent campaign under Patrick Vieira, as not only are they safely berthed in mid-table, they are through to the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, and perhaps most importantly, playing a better brand of football.

One thing that hasn't changed though was their ability to beat Man City. They recorded a 2-0 win at the Etihad in October, and they also beat them away from home in 2018. In 2020, that particular fixture ended all square.

More recently, Vieira's side are unbeaten in four in all competitions - three of which were victories. They were especially excellent in their 2-0 success at Molineux last weekend.

That performance could mean that they go unchanged for the visit of City, but it has to be noted that Vieira hasn't been afraid to make changes, even on the back of good results.

Citizens under pressure at the top

There has been plenty of talk that Manchester City have let Liverpool back in the title race, but if you look at the results, the reality is that the Reds have just been relentless in 2022.

Since the aforementioned defeat to Palace in October, Pep Guardiola's men have taken 49 points from a possible 54, with the only blips being a draw at Southampton in January and a defeat to Spurs in February.

As for the team news, Ruben Dias remains injured, and the influential, Joao Cancelo has had an illness. At the other end of the field, Phil Foden and Riyad Mahrez have impressed in recent weeks, so they will likely fill two of the three forward slots. Jack Grealish could get the nod in the other.

Tight game expected at Selhurst Park

The hosts are the outsiders at 12.0 on the Betfair Exchange, with the draw at 5.6 and the reigning champions available to back at 1.35.

Palace had only lost once at home by the turn of the year, but since then they have played four, lost three and drawn one in the league.

The trio of defeats did come at the hands of West Ham, Liverpool and Chelsea, but it's not like Man City are an easier side to beat than those three.

The visitors lost their opening away game of the campaign, but it's been one-way traffic since then - winning 11 and drawing two of the next 13.

Given all of that, I don't think I can justify opposing City, even at the prices, but I would much rather back a Correct Score than a three's on shot.

Vieira's side only lost by a single goal in three of their four home defeats this term, with the other being a two goal margin against Liverpool.

I am expecting Monday's match to be quite closely-fought, and with Dias out for City, I think 1-2 to the visitors at 10.5 represents a hint of value.

Take both teams to find the net

Over 2.5 Goals is the favourite in the premier goals market, with it's price trading at around the 1.78 mark.

That is understandable given that Man City are involved, but it is worth noting that three of their last five on the road have seen Under 2.5 backers collect.

Following that trend is around 2.26 on the Exchange, and while I wouldn't dismiss it entirely, I think the odds are about right here, and I would much rather back Both Teams to Score at 2.22

Bet Builder

My Bet Builder on the Sportsbook starts with BTTS, and it also features Over 7.5 Away Team Corners and Phil Foden to score anytime.

City have had a massive 242 corners so far this season - 32 more than Liverpool who have had the second most.

Foden only played 45 minutes against Sporting in the Champions League, so he should start, and he has netted in three of his last four away games.

The three selections add up to a 17/2 shot.

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