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Crystal Palace travel to struggling Leeds United

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THE view is pretty at the top of the Championship for Palace at the moment and tomorrow they travel to an out-of-sorts Leeds United.

The Elland Road club have plummeted in recent weeks towards the wrong end of the table, so this could be a good time to face them.

They have not won in the league since a 1-0 victory over Barnsley on October 6 and have lost their last three games and conceded eight goals, so their defence will be vulnerable facing a Palace side who have scored ten in their last three matches.

And last Sunday, striker Luke Varney was sent off in the 1-0 defeat at Millwall, so he's set to serve a ban and will miss the Eagles' visit.

Former Palace manager Neil Warnock is now in the hotseat at Leeds and blamed the club's recent results on off-the-field ownership issues.

However, on Wednesday, a Middle-East private equity group called GFH Capital finalised a deal to take over the club, starting a one-month transitional period, which will then see them become a 100 per cent shareholder with current chairman Ken Bates becoming club president.

Let's hope their good news doesn't rub off onto their players too quickly, though, as Palace are in Yorkshire looking to make it 15 games unbeaten.

Last weekend, it was business as usual at Selhurst thanks to a comfortable 3-0 win over Derby County and manager Ian Holloway could name the same starting XI.

Andre Moritz impressed in the victory against the Rams after starting ahead of Owen Garvan and should retain his place in the middle of the park.

Glenn Murray is a man on a mission at the moment on the back of his two goals and assist against the Rams, with Holloway claiming the 29-year-old is one of the best strikers he's worked with after the match.

At the back, it looks like Damien Delaney is set to sign a new contract beyond January, and deservedly so.

Why Ipswich let him go in the summer is beyond belief, but that's in the past now and he is clearly enjoying the next chapter in his career in south London.

Looking at the home side tomorrow, who poses a threat to Palace's unbeaten run?

El-Hadji Diouf has been playing in England for ten years now and is the other side of 30 years old, but he seems to be enjoying his football again under the manager who once described him as a "sewer rat".

Advertiser Sport has picked him out as the opposition's player to watch this weekend because he still poses an eye for goal along with a creative pass, and on his day, he can be a tricky customer.

Ross McCormack was heavily linked with a move to SE25 in the summer from Elland Road and the striker could face Palace after returning from injury recently.

We've seen how lethal he can be and he'll be looking to hit the goal trail sooner rather than later, as will Italian forward Luciano Becchio, who has found the back of the net against Palace before.

Midfielder Michael Tonge came to the fore in his Sheffield United days as they rose to the Premier League, while veteran Michael Brown could return to the starting XI following a one-match suspension.

However, Rudolph Austin will definitely be out due to a cracked ankle bone and defender Jason Pearce is currently serving a three-game ban.

And standing in front of Palace's attacking threat is goalkeeper Paddy Kenny, who has Premier League experience with Sheffield United and Queens Park Rangers.

No game is easy in the Championship, but you just feel with the way Palace are playing at the moment, they could be returning down the M1 with another three points on Saturday night, but only just.

On Tuesday next week, Palace are back on the road again when they face high-flying Hull City, so if they can come away with at least three or four points from these next two games, it will set them up nicely before the big match against Brighton next Saturday.


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