Crystal Palace missing six key figures ahead of Chelsea clash as Everton gain fitness boost
Everton battled hard away at Manchester City over the weekend but lost out to two wonderful moments from the league's top scorer Erling Haaland. While they picked up no points, their rivals at the bottom in Luton and Nottingham Forest also tasted defeat, which was certainly a boost.
Next up for Everton is a crucial spell that includes facing Palace, who sit three places and five points above them in 15th, who welcome Chelsea to Selhurst Park tonight. One boost for the Toffees ahead of that game next Monday is the fact that they are missing four key first-team figures for tonight's game and that should extend into next week as well.
Currently, Roy Hodgson is sweating over the fitness of a number of key figures who are all likely to be absent against Everton. Defender Marc Guehi suffered a knee injury in the defeat at Brighton last week and he will be a huge miss at the back having started 22 games this season.
To make matters worse for Palace, they are without both of their chief attacking outlets; Michael Olise suffered another setback with his thigh injury despite being substituted on during the game last week. Plus, Eberechi Eze is also out with a thigh injury which means the duo who have contributed 65% of Palace's league goals this season will both be unavailable for the game against Everton, which is a huge boost for Sean Dyche's side.
On top of that, they are also missing long-term absentee in midfield with Cheick Doucoure (Achilles), Rob Holding (Ankle) and Jesurun Rak-Sakyi (thigh). Joel Ward could return and be an emergency option at centre-back, but Chris Richards can fill in for Guehi meaning January signing Adam Wharton can feature again in midfield.