Tonight, Selhurst Park, 8pm, live on Sky Sports 1
SOMETIMES you look at a fixture and all you see are nils. No thrills or spills – just nils.
However, games that promise to be dull on paper can surprise. For example who would have predicted St Mirren 4, St Johnstone 3 – a game that cried out unders – or even Brechin 3, Rangers 4 – with the Ibrox men having not conceded away from home before the weekend.
Palace v Fulham is one of those matches that doesn't entice me to keep 8-10pm free. I don't see many goals but I'm fully aware an early strike, a red card or just change of tact can alter the course of events dramatically.
I tipped Palace for the drop at the start of the season and they aren't letting me down. The only points Ian Holloway's side have amassed in seven games are from the one side sitting below them – Sunderland.
My gut feeling says sell goals and all the stats point towards a low-scoring draw. Palace have failed to keep a clean sheet this season but scored just five while Fulham have netted just once on the road.
The duo have the lowest win percentage in Premier League London derbies (both 21 per cent) so the draw is tempting at 12-5 with McBookie.com and others. Even more likely is a half-time draw that pays 11-10 at bet365 and Ladbrokes in what could be a nervy slow burner.
Attacks are so bad I have to consider no scorer at 19-2 with McBookie.com but 1-1 is also a possibility at a biggest 13-2 with the same firm. Best bet could be to go for under 2.5 goals. That pays no more than 8-11 at Skybet but is the one I'm most confident about.
Three of Fulham's five goals this season have come from subs (Darren Bent and Bryan Ruiz) so even picking a first scorer is tough.
Dimitar Berbatov would normally be a popular pick but opta stats show he's has touched the ball just 17 times in the opposition box this campaign – an average of three times a game on average.
Palace's joint top scorers are the less than prolific Danny Gabbidon and Stuart O'Keefe with two each – and that kind of sums up their fortunes.
If this is a Monday night thriller I'll be surprised – but then life is full of them.
1pt under 1.5 goals
5pts under 2.5 goals
1pt no scorer