Crystal Palace Vs Arsenal

The 25-year-old forward has been in impressive form leading Palace's charge up the table

Champions League-chasing Arsenal face another key game in their festive fixture list on Thursday when they travel to Selhurst Park to play Crystal Palace. Now sat sixth in the table, the Gunners are four points adrift of the top four, they're also three points behind arch-rivals Tottenham.

Manchester United loanee Timothy Fosu-Mensah may be available once again after a recent hamstring complaint, whilst Christian Benteke is back again after serving a one game ban.

Crystal Palace have won only one of their last 12 home league games against Arsenal (D5 L6), though it was a 3-0 victory in this exact fixture last season. Picking up a 1-1 draw away at Swansea last weekend, the Eagles are now unbeaten in their last eight Premier League appearances, a run stemming back to the middle of November.

At a time when there are still doubts about Wenger's abilities despite his remarkable longevity - in overseeing his 810th Premier League fixture the Frenchman equalled the record of Sir Alex Ferguson - his team displayed so numerous traits he inspires. Giroud will be joined on the sideline by Spanish defender Nacho Monreal, who has picked up an ankle injury. This year, Arsenal have only managed to secure two wins on the road this season, this is also the Gunners joint-fewest tally after the opening nine games of the year.

Jack Wilshere will continue his partnership with Granit Xhaka in the centre of midfield due to Aaron Ramsey's absence, while Alex Iwobi could support the triumvirate of Alexis Sanchez, Mesut Ozil and Alexandre Lacazette. The Chilean has only scored once in his last five Premier League outings and has been nowhere near the form that saw him score 24 goals in all competitions last season.

Fergie was in charge at Old Trafford when the Premier League kicked off in 1992-3, and kept that post until his retirement in 2013.

Paper Round's view: Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger appears to be the only person still hoping Sanchez might stay on in North London, having commented: "we have not been approached by anyone".

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