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Despite a request to postpone their fixture at Tottenham Hotspur on Boxing Day due to COVID-19 absences in the squad, Palace made the short trip across London to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
A short five-minute spell effectively decided the Eagles’ fate in the encounter though, as Patrick Vieira‘s men eventually fell to a 3-0 defeat in the capital.
After a quickfire double from the hosts left Palace 2-0 behind just after the half-an-hour mark, Wilfried Zaha was then sent off for a second yellow card in a needless altercation with Emerson Royal just three minutes after the second goal.
As a result, Vieira could only set his side up for damage limitation for the rest of the game, and he was perhaps a little pleased that the scoreline did not become a humiliation.
Following the defeat though, Palace have won just once in their last seven Premier League outings ahead of the visit of Norwich on Tuesday, which has seen them drop to 12th in the table at the time of writing.
Nine points still separate the Eagles from the drop zone, but Vieira will be keen for his side to turn results around in the coming weeks to ensure they are not dragged into a relegation battle come May.
With three victories and no defeats in their last five meetings with Tuesday’s opponents over the last few years, Palace will be confident of getting back on track in front of their own supporters.
With just 48 hours between both sides’ fixtures played on Boxing Day and this clash at Selhurst Park, changes will be expected to both sets of starting lineups on Tuesday.
However, with as many as six COVID-19 absentees for the hosts, things could prove more difficult for Vieira.
Vicente Guaita, Nathaniel Clyne, Luka Milivojevic, Michael Olise, Eberechi Eze and Christian Benteke are all set to miss out again following their absence at Tottenham due to positive test results.
Key man Zaha has proven to be a huge miss over the last few years when he has been absent, and he will sit out this one through a one-match suspension following his red card on Sunday, whilst James McArthur will also be unavailable due to a hamstring injury.
As for the visitors, first-choice goalkeeper Tim Krul, and Lukas Rupp, both missed out on Boxing Day due to positive COVID-19 tests themselves, so will be expected to be unavailable once more on Tuesday.
The defensive trio of Grant Hanley, Andrew Omobamidele and Christoph Zimmermann are not expected to return until January, whilst the midfield duo of Mathias Normann and Milot Rashica should also miss out through injury.
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The likes of Dimitrios Giannoulis, Pierre Lees Melou, Todd Cantwell and Adam Idah will be pushing for starts should Smith freshen up his side as expected.
Crystal Palace possible starting lineup:
Butland; Kelly, Andersen, Guehi, Mitchell; Gallagher, Riedewald, Schlupp; Ayew, Mateta, Edouard
Norwich City possible starting lineup:
Gunn; Aarons, Kabak, Gibson, Giannoulis; Gilmour, McLean; Sargent, Melou, Cantwell; Idah.