Mamadou Sakho

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PL Preview: Tuesday fixtures include Chelsea

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As the holiday season nears, the Premier League begins to ramp up. While that can be hard on Premier League managers, it’s great for you, the fan, who now has plenty of options to choose from as you make your way through the work week.

[ PL SCHEDULE: Where to watch all midweek Premier League games ]


Burnley vs. Stoke City – 2:45 p.m. ET, on NBC Sports Gold

If Burnley defeats Stoke City on Tuesday, the Clarets would jump Tottenham, Arsenal, and Liverpool en route to a place in the Premier League table’s Top 4. Just pause for a moment and soak that in.

Better?

That’s right, Sean Dyche has his Burnley side on a roll, having won five of its last seven matches. In games where they were earning draws last year, they’re picking up all three points this year. Meanwhile, they face a Potters group that sits just three points above the relegation zone, meaning the heat has turned up on Mark Hughes. What is in store for us at Turf Moor?

INJURIES: Burnley – Tom Heaton (shoulder), Robbie Brady (knee), Jonathan Walters (knee) | Stoke City – Jese (personal leave), Glen Johnson (knee), Bruno Martins Indi (shoulder), Stephen Ireland (leg).


Huddersfield vs. Chelsea – 3:00 p.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com

Antonio Conte, in charge of the defending champions, is suddenly on the hot seat. Already 14 points back of leaders and expected winners Manchester City, the Blues are sitting a distant third in the table.

A trip to Huddersfield could be exactly what the doctor ordered. The Terriers started the season well, but had lost four Premier League matches in a row before a 2-0 victory over Brighton turned things around.

Conte has already ruled Chelsea out of the title, with the Blues now fighting for a Champions League place. Can the boss take advantage of the poor opposition form? He will be without star striker Alvaro Morata who is dealing with both back problems and general fatigue, with Conte calling his schedule “impossible.”

INJURIES: HuddersfieldMichael Hefele (Achillies), Philip Billing (ankle), Jon Stankovic (knee), Kasey Palmer (ineligible – parent club) | Chelsea – Alvaro Morata (back), David Luiz (knee).


Crystal Palace vs. Watford – 3:00 p.m. ET, on NBC Sports Gold

The Eagles hav a chance to pull themselves not only off the bottom of the Premier League table, but out of the relegation zone completely when they host Watford at Selhurst Park. Crystal Palace sits a point back of Swansea City on the bottom, but with somewhat improved performances under Roy Hodgson, three points would climb them completely out of the drop.

Nevertheless, it remains to be seen how Hodgson balances a desperate need to collect points with discipline of his struggling striker Christian Benteke, who remains goalless on the year after missing a critical penalty he wasn’t supposed to take in the 2-2 draw with Bournemouth over the weekend.

Watford, meanwhile, is without a win in its last three and desperately needs a result. The Hornets sit ninth in the Premier League table but could see their advantage over the bottom half evaporate with another loss.

INJURIES: Crystal Palace – Mamadou Sakho (calf), Joel Ward, Damien Delaney, Connor Wickham (knee) | Watford – Will Hughes (hamstring), Isaac Success (knee), Nathan Chalobah (knee), Younes Kaboul (hamstring), Craig Cathcart (knee)

Premier League notes: Wanyama, Bolasie return after long layoffs, Sakho injured

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Two Premier League clubs saw a pair of players return to the field after long spells on the sidelines.

Tottenham revealed that Victor Wanyama took part in training on Monday for the first time since suffering a knee injury in late August, which has kept him off the field since then. Wanyama started in both of Tottenham’s first two fixtures of the season before the injury.

[ MORE: Premier League stats ]

At the same time in the northwest of England, Yannick Bolasie returned to the field for Everton’s reserves for the first time since suffering a torn ACL last December against Manchester United. Everton manager Sam Allardyce hinted recently that Bolasie could even make the first team subs bench before the end of the calendar year as he continues his rehab.

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Crystal Palace 2-2 Bournemouth: Defoe scores beauty brace

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  • Defoe opens, closes first half scoring
  • Milivojevic, Dann score
  • Key saves from Begovic, Speroni

Christian Benteke missed a stoppage time penalty kick and Bournemouth held on for a point at Selhurst Park in a 2-2 draw at Crystal Palace on Saturday.

Jermain Defoe‘s brace included a gorgeous finish, making amends for Luka Milivojevic and Scott Dann goals.

Palace remains 20th with 11 points, while Bournemouth is 14th with 16.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

A clever short corner caught Palace looking poor, with Defoe sprung all alone — by an illegal pick — near the penalty spot to bury a side-footed offering.

Palace was immediately ready to level, but a timely intervention stopped Mamadou Sakho at the goal line following fine work from Ruben Loftus-Cheek.

The Eagles leveled when Wilfried Zaha was chopped down in the box, and Milivojevic had no problem with his penalty attempt.

Dann used a Yohan Cabaye cross to make it 2-1, but only briefly as Defoe scored this wonder goal (top).

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Jordon Ibe snapped the game back into life in the 70th minute when he forced Julian Speroni into a diving parry.

And it was a hard foul that brought a different kind of vigor to the match, with Lewis Cook‘s sliding challenge on Zaha leading both players into yellow cards.

Asmir Begovic made a great reaction stop when Loftus-Cheek’s deflected effort teased the near post. An ensuing corner was toe-poked wide of the goal by Milivojevic.

Charlie Daniels then cut down Zaha, but Benteke remained ice cold with a poor penalty attempt which was saved by Begovic.

PL roundup: Reds, Blues, Spurs draw

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Manchester City didn’t play Saturday, but sure must’ve felt like it won.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Only one Top Four contender found a win on Saturday — second place Manchester United — as Chelsea, Liverpool, and Tottenham Hotspur all drew.

Not one will feel like a winner (though the Blues will be pleased to have equalized at Anfield).

Liverpool 1-1 ChelseaRECAP

Jurgen Klopp rolled the dice by keeping Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino out of his Starting XI, and Chelsea obliged him by letting a fairly dominant first half end without a Blues goal. Liverpool went ahead through red-hot Mohamed Salah, but Willian‘s late cross drifted over Simon Mignolet and gave the Blues a share of the points.

Newcastle United 0-3 WatfordRECAP

Marco Silva‘s Watford is dedicated from end line to end line, and Newcastle badly needs a finisher atop its attack. Joselu, Dwight Gayle, and substitute Aleksandar Mitrovic could not find the goal, while Watford struck through Andre Gray, Richarlison, and a DeAndre Yedlin own goal. Is it January yet, Newcastle supporters?

Swansea City 0-0 BournemouthRECAP

Embattled Swans boss Paul Clement hasn’t seen his team score in three matches, and hasn’t won in six after a scoreless draw at the Liberty Stadium. Wilfried Bony had a goal disallowed for Swans, who sit just a point ahead of victorious 20th place side Crystal Palace.

Manchester United 1-0 Brighton and Hove AlbionRECAP

The visiting Gulls were quite good on Saturday, and this one could’ve gone either way. It turned on a wrongly-awarded corner kick to the hosts, and Ashley Young‘s shot from outside the 18 took a wicked turn off Lewis Dunk for an own goal that gave United all three points.

Crystal Palace 2-1 Stoke CityRECAP

Roy Hodgson’s Eagles are 2-2-2 in their last six to go from zero to eight points and give themselves a look at Premier League safety. Stoke took a lead on a Xherdan Shaqiri goal, but Ruben Loftus-Cheek quickly answered for Palace. Mamadou Sakho claimed the winner at the death to boost Palace within three points (and a swing in goal differential) of 17th.

Tottenham Hotspur 1-1 West Bromwich AlbionRECAP

Caretaker boss Gary Megson looked to have unleashed the dogs when Salomon Rondon gave West Brom a stunning fourth minute lead, but the Baggies got real stingy real quick against Spurs. Harry Kane could only rescue a point for Tottenham, and West Brom remains winless since August.

Crystal Palace 2-1 Stoke City: Sakho keeps Eagles rising

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  • Shaqiri, Loftus-Cheek trade goals
  • Sakho nabs winner
  • Palace 2W-2D-2L in last six

Mamadou Sakho‘s late goal drove Crystal Palace to a 2-1 late win at Selhurst Park on Saturday, as the Roy Hodgson regroup is well and truly on in South London.

Ruben Loftus-Cheek canceled out Xherdan Shaqiri‘s first half goal within moments.

Palace now has eight points and can see safety for the first time this season. Stoke sits 15th.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

A slow start eventually saw Stoke City look superior, and Wayne Hennessey made a nice save on Xherdan Shaqiri 1v1.

At the other end, Lee Grant robbed James McArthur.

Roy Hodgson took McArthur off for Christian Benteke at the break. Could the big man make a difference in his second substitute appearance following a long layoff?

The aforementioned actors all played a role in a defining stanza of the match. Benteke lashed over goal moments before Shaqiri converted a chance at the other end.

Yet Palace battled back to equalize quickly through Loftus-Cheek. And Yohan Cabaye‘s late drive off the post allowed Sakho to snag three big points for the hosts.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]