Brighton to make light work of Palace in PL surge
Crystal Palace are still searching for their first win of the year, and are unlikely to find it against rivals Brighton & Hove Albion when the Seagulls come to visit Selhurst Park in the Premier League on Saturday. The away side have two games in hand on some of the other sides in the top six, and Kaoru Mitoma's firing them ever upwards. Read our preview here:
Nathan Ferguson, Joel Ward, and James McArthur all remain out for Patrick Vieira's side, but nobody absence is as damaging to the Eagles' cause as Wilfried Zaha's. There is still craft and creativity in the ranks, especially with Ebere Eze and Michael Olise in attacking midfield, but not enough of the opportunities fashioned are then finished off. It's therefore become more incumbent recently on the defence to stand up and repel the opposition. Marc Guéhi is often touted as a future England mainstay, but he's lacked a regular partner alongside him to assist in recent games, which is undercutting the back four's resolve as a whole.
Mito's on fire
Meanwhile, despite the sale of Leandro Trossard to leaders Arsenal, things continue to go from strength to strength for Roberto De Zerbi's men. The Italian head coach has overseen big, deserved victories over sides like Liverpool (twice) in 2023, and he'll also be able to welcome back World Cup winner Alexis Mac Allister after the midfielder served his suspension. On the left of the attack, Kaoru Mitoma has been sensational, scoring five in his last seven appearances and making mincemeat of his markers in the process. Other individuals have also caught the eye - 18 year old striker Evan Ferguson has looked at home on his own up top, Solly March has dazzled on the opposite flank, and both full-backs have joined in the final third to great effect.
Brighton only look to be going one way at the moment, and Mitoma is firing. bet365 have odds of 3.75 for the Japanese winger to get on the scoresheet once again.