Everton-Crystal Palace Preview - Sports Illustrated

Everton-Crystal Palace Preview

Carlo Ancelotti has claimed Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison must both be targeting 20 goals with the quality of creative players now in Everton's squad.

Everton head into Saturday's clash with Crystal Palace on the back of two Premier League wins, against Tottenham and West Brom respectively, and two victories in the EFL Cup.

The Toffees have scored 14 times in total, with Calvert-Lewin currently sitting join top of the top-flight scoring charts with four goals after netting his first senior hat-trick against the Baggies.

With James Rodriguez having made an impressive start to his Everton career, Ancelotti has set his strike force a target for the rest of the campaign.

"I think James will help him because he will help the striker, he is fantastic with assists," Ancelotti told a news conference. "The target for Dominic is to reach 20 goals because he is a fantastic striker, like Richarlison.

"We have Andre Gomes, James, [Gylfi] Sigurdsson, Bernard. Our strikers have to be happy. I think if they don't score 20 goals each, they can have a problem with me! I said to them, you have to score at least 20, and Moise Kean also has the possibility – he's played two games and scored two. If I'm a striker and I have James, Gomes, Sigurdsson, I'd score goals, so they have to!"

Palace, too, have started the season brilliantly, beating Southampton and Manchester United. The Eagles have added Eberechi Eze and Michy Batshuayi to their squad, and Roy Hodgson is delighted with the options he has available.

"I enjoy it from the club's point of view and players' point of view," he said. "Because there's no doubt players need that edge on keeping their standard to the high level that's required. Competition for places is good for everyone at the football club and certainly as the manager."

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Crystal Palace – Wilfried Zaha

Hodgson recently admitted Zaha had his head turned by talk of a move away, with Everton among those linked in the past, but the Ivory Coast international has started the 2020-21 campaign in fine form. He has scored three goals in his first two league outings, which is just one fewer than he managed in the whole of last season.

Everton – Dominic Calvert-Lewin

Calvert-Lewin's hat-trick against West Brom was the first of his senior career and took his tally for the season to four goals. The Englishman was also on target the last time these sides met, with Everton claiming a 3-1 victory at Goodison Park in February.

KEY OPTA FACTS

• Palace are winless in each of their last 11 Premier League games against Everton since a 3-2 win at Goodison Park in September 2014, failing to score in six of those games.

• Each of the last three Premier League games at Selhurst Park between Crystal Palace and Everton have ended level, including back-to-back 0-0 draws most recently.

• Other than Goodison Park, Everton have kept more Premier League clean sheets at Selhurst Park than any other venue (nine), with six of those coming in their last seven visits to the stadium.

• Everton are looking to start a Premier League campaign with three straight wins for the first time since 1993-94.

• Palace are averaging just 27 per cent possession in the Premier League this season, the lowest of all the sides to have played twice.