Watch Live: Crystal Palace vs Manchester City

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Crystal Palace could have a big hand in the title chase as the revived club host Manchester City at Selhurst Park at 11:10 on NBCSN or live online at NBC Sports Live Extra.

City will look to capitalize on any points dropped by Liverpool at Anfield today, and Manuel Pellegrini has gone for it today with both Edin Dzeko and Sergio Aguero in the lineup.

In the absence of Jesus Navas and David Silva due to injury, Pellegrini has gone much more direct, with Javi Garcia and Yaya Toure anchoring a midfield that will likely play through the middle up to the strike pair at the top.

Toure is a big start, as the Ivorian was a question mark heading into the fixture. He returns after a week out.

Samir Nasri and James Milner do play out wide, but will possibly be more support with heavy overlap from Zabaleta and Kolarov.

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Meanwhile, Palace has Marouane Chamakh back in action up front after missing last week against West Ham through injury.  The Moroccan international starts next to Cameron Jerome, with Kagisho Dikgacoi also back from injury on the bench.

Palace will be hoping for shades of Chelsea when they all but derailed the Blues’ title chances, and they look to do the same to City.

Crystal Palace have won five straight matches in the Premier League, something they haven’t done in 22 years.

LINEUPS:

Crystal Palace – Speroni; Mariappa, Dann, Delaney, Ward; Jedinak, Ledley, Bolasie, Puncheon; Chamakh, Jerome.
Bench – Hennessey, Gabbidon, Parr, Dikgacoi, Ince, Gayle, Murray.

Manchester City – Hart; Zabaleta, Kompany, Demichelis, Kolarov; Milner, Garcia, Toure, Nasri; Dzeko, Aguero.
Bench – Pantilimon, Lescott, Richards, Clichy, Fernandinho, Jovetic, Negredo.

VIDEO: Tunisia equalizes on controversial penalty kick

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England centerback Kyle Walker put his arm up to halt the forward progress of Fakhreddine Ben Youssef. Unfortunately for Walker, Ben Youssef was in the box and Walker’s elbow caught Ben Youssef’s face.

Referee Wilmar Roldan quickly whistled for a penalty kick and despite the protests from a half-dozen of England players and a check from the VAR, the called stood. Ferjani Sassi’stepped up to the spot and found the lower-left corner, just barely beating Jordan Pickford to tie the game in the 35th minute.

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How will England respond?

VIDEO: Captain Kane puts England on the board early

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It may be the easiest goal-scoring opportunity Harry Kane‘s ever had in an international competition, and he finished it as easy as you’d like.

Kane side-footed home after Tunisia goalkeeper Mouez Hassen made a terrific save on John Stone’s header off a corner, but the save was directed right into a wide-open Kane who was standing ready inside the six yard box. The 11th minute goal will surely settle some of the Three Lions’ nerves as they open their World Cup bid in Russia.

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After slow start, Belgium takes care of business against feisty Panama

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All it took was one goal to bring Belgium to life.

Following a frustrating first 45 minutes, in which Belgium put a pair of shots into the side netting and forced saves from Panama goalkeeper Jaime Penedo, Dries Mertens 47th minute goal opened the floodgates, as Belgium went on to defeat Panama, 3-0, Monday afternoon in Sochi.

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But Panama never made it easy for the Belgians. From the opening whistle the CONCACAF nation showed its incredible spirit, chasing down Belgium all across the field and making life incredibly difficult for Belgium attackers Romelu Lukaku, Mertens and Eden Hazard. Hazard was hacked down all over the field, and while he did earn fouls and a few yellow cards were issued to Panamanian players, it was enough to get in Hazard’s head.

Two minutes into the second half, everything changed. A wonderstrike from Mertens opened the game, and forced Panama to attack and try and tie the match, which gave Hazard, de Bruyne and Lukaku more space to operate.

In the heat and humidity of the Sochi summer, Panama’s veteran defense began to tire, allowing de Bruyne the space to deliver a terrific assist to Lukaku in the box, putting Belgium up 2-0 in the 69th minute.

 

Six minutes later, Lukaku was put through on the break, chipping over Penedo to confirm the victory.

With the win, Belgium moves to the top of Group G. Up next for Belgium is Tunisia on Saturday, while Panama takes on England on Sunday.

VIDEO: de Bruyne delivers gorgeous assist on Lukaku goal

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It took a little bit of patience, but Romelu Lukaku finally got on the scoresheet at the 2018 World Cup, thanks to a delicious assist from crosstown club rival Kevin De Bruyne.

The Manchester City playmaker delivered a spectacular outside-of-the-boot cross into the box, where Lukaku’s head met it and guided it towards the far post for Belgium’s second goal of the day.

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