Leicester City vs Crystal Palace Preview: Probable Lineups, Prediction, Tactics, Team News & Key Stats

Mid-table battlers Leicester City and Crystal Palace will lock horns at the King Power Stadium, with both teams having little to play for in the Premier League.

Leicester City will be hoping to bring some consistency to their game as the domestic season nears its business end. The Foxes have struggled for form and a run of positive results, although their focus would be away from the Premier League in the coming weeks.

Brendan Rodgers knows well their best chance of remaining in Europe would come by winning the UEFA Europa Conference League. Leicester played out a goalless draw in their quarter-final first leg at the King Power and will aim to get better in the return fixture.

They are certainly out of contention to qualify for European football via their league standing, although they come into this game on the back of a 1-1 draw at Old Trafford. Having played two games more than their opponents on Sunday, Rodgers will certainly be aiming to finish above Crystal Palace at the end of the season.

Palace, meanwhile, are picking up form and have much to gain in the late-season run-in. They are in the FA Cup semi-finals and will be eager to finish in the top half of the Premier League table. Patrick Vieira’s men certainly boosted their chances with a resounding 3-0 victory over Arsenal last Monday and will be hoping to repeat that performance.

The FA Cup remains their hope for silverware, although three of the biggest English teams in Liverpool, Manchester City and Chelsea are competing for the coveted trophy. Vieira would aim to finish the season positively and lay the groundwork for a better campaign in 2022/23.

Their next challenge is a trip to the King Power Stadium, knowing well their opponents are focused elsewhere. Another positive result will be a good thing to carry for the late-season run-in, and Vieira will be hoping for a victory over their mid-table rivals.

Team News & Tactics

Leicester City

Brendan Rodgers does not have new fitness concerns after the midweek clash with PSV Eindhoven. The Leicester City manager will look to make key changes to that team and bring in others for the Palace clash. Nampalys Mendy and Caglar Soyuncu are back in the squad, Rodgers confirmed, although Ayoze Perez may be a doubt due to an illness.

Jamie Vardy remains out with a knee problem, and it may take some time for the veteran forward to return to the pitch. Ryan Bertrand and Danny Ward are also absent from the squad. Boubakary Soumare is expected to be fit and available.

Rodgers may look to rest the likes of Ricardo Pereira, Jonny Evans and Wesley Fofana for the Crystal Palace clash. The trio should be back for the second leg against PSV next week. Soyuncu and Daniel Amartey could form the central defensive partnership, while James Justin and Timothy Castagne might slot in as the full-backs.

Mendy is expected to come back into the midfield and play alongside Youri Tielemans. Rodgers will look to keep his attackers sharp and go with the tested formula of Harvey Barnes, Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall, James Maddison and Kelechi Iheanacho to push for the goals.

Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): Schmeichel; Justin, Amartey, Soyuncu, Castagne; Tielemans, Mendy; Maddison, Dewsbury-Hall, Barnes; Iheanacho

Crystal Palace

Unlike his counterpart in the Leicester City dugout, Patrick Vieira need not worry about European football and will certainly play a team similar to the one that beat Arsenal. Nathan Ferguson recently suffered a setback on his road to recovery, which will keep him out for the foreseeable future.

Michael Olise seems to have overcome a foot problem and was seen in training pictures. The 20-year-old should be available for selection, but Vieira might be wary of including him from the start just yet. Even if he is fully fit, it would be harsh to take out Jordan Ayew, who scored against Arsenal on Monday.

The team may be unchanged from Monday with Joachim Andersen and Marc Guehi holding the central defensive line. Cheikhou Kouyate, Jeffrey Schlupp and Conor Gallagher will form the central midfield unit.

Wilfried Zaha, who had a tremendous game on Monday will continue from the left side of the Crystal Palace attack, with Jean-Philippe Mateta and Ayew for support in the front three.

Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Guaita; Clyne, Andersen, Guehi, Mitchell; Gallagher, Kouyate, Schlupp; Ayew, Mateta, Zaha

Key Stats

  • Leicester are unbeaten in their last five Premier League games against Crystal Palace (W3 D2), having lost each of their previous four against the Eagles before this.
  • Leicester City have picked up 10 points in their last five Premier League games (W3 D1 L1), one more than in their previous 10 matches in the competition (W2 D3 L5).
  • Crystal Palace have won their last two away league matches, beating Watford and Wolves, having won just one of their first 12 matches on the road this season (D6 L5). The Eagles last won three in a row in April/May 2019 under Roy Hodgson.
  • Crystal Palace have kept a clean sheet in each of their last four games in all competitions, with the Eagles last having a longer such run back in October/November 2011 (6 games).
  • Wilfried Zaha has scored more Premier League goals against Leicester than he has versus any other side in the competition (6).

Player To Watch

Wilfried Zaha

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Zaha was doubtful to feature against Arsenal and, despite his fitness troubles, he was one of the star performers for Crystal Palace on Monday. In recent weeks, the Ivory Coast international has proven that he has added a semblance of consistency to his game. He is considered Palace’s main attacker, and Zaha needs to extend that reputation even further.

His tally of 11 goals this season is already the same as the last one, and Zaha has played three fewer games. Watch out for the 29-year-old as he comes back into top form for Crystal Palace ahead of the match versus Leicester City.


Leicester City 1-2 Crystal Palace

Leicester City’s focus will remain solely on the UEFA Europa Conference League and will likely be less aggressive at this point of the season in the Premier League. They have a big game next week against PSV Eindhoven and Brendan Rodgers will be eager to use his players’ full energy there than versus Crystal Palace.

Crystal Palace come into this game on the back of an impressive performance against Arsenal, and Patrick Vieira will certainly like continuity. Expect the Eagles to take all three points from the King Power Stadium and continue on their journey for a top-half finish.

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