Crystal Palace and Newcastle United supporters are eagerly anticipating the meeting between the two teams in the Premier League this weekend, with both going into the clash off the back of contrasting recent results.
Roy Hodgson’s Eagles will head into their encounter with the North East giants at Selhurst Park having beaten Huddersfield Town 1-0 in their last league outing, with Wilfried Zaha’s excellent goal enough to end a disappointing run of three straight losses.
Yet things aren’t going quite so well for Rafa Benitez’s Magpies as they have yet to taste victory in the league this season, losing four of their five league games to sit second-bottom in the table at this very early stage of the campaign.
Nonetheless, both sides will be optimistic about taking all three points on Saturday, although Newcastle will certainly have to be wary of the capabilities of winger Andros Townsend, who of course left St James’ Park for Selhurst Park back in the summer of 2016, only for the Magpies to reportedly seek to re-sign him during the summer window.
And there is little doubting that Palace have been the only beneficiaries from Newcastle’s decision to let the England international leave the club little over two years ago, which is why the Magpies have to try harder to lure the 27-year-old back to St James’ Park in the January transfer window.
Ultimately, Townsend made the move to the North East in the January of 2016 as the Magpies sought to keep themselves in the Premier League, and the winger certainly did his bit in netting four goals in 13 league games for the club, albeit he wasn’t able to inspire them to safety.
And the Englishman then jumped ship that summer to join Palace in a bid to remain in the top-flight, and there is no doubting that the Eagles have benefited greatly from their investment as Townsend has performed well for Hodgson’s side in the last few years.
The 27-year-old scored three goals and laid on seven assists in his first season at Selhurst Park to help the Eagles to a 14th place finish under the guidance of Sam Allardyce, before producing the goods again last term in netting twice and laying on nine assists as Hodgson’s side fought back from a dreadful start to eventually end up 11th in the top-flight.
Thus, the England international, capped 13 times by his country down the years, has proven to be a key part of the Palace squad in recent times to suggest that the £13 million they paid for him was a very shrewd move indeed – there’s a reason the Magpies have since tried to lure him back to St James’ Park.
And with Townsend set to face his former club at Selhurst Park this weekend, Newcastle will hope that they aren’t left to rue failing to re-sign the winger during the summer – instead, they must be focusing on trying harder to lure him back to St James’ Park when the window reopens in January.
Palace and Newcastle fans… what do you think? Let us know!