Wolves vs Crystal PalaceEnglish Premier League, KO: 20:15 Jul 20, 2020, Molineux
WOLVES still have their destiny in their own hands as they bid to seal another season of Europa League football but victory against Crystal Palace is a must.
The Molineux men sit seventh, two points behind Spurs in the race for the final Euro slot, but this is their game in hand ahead of a daunting closing fixture away to Chelsea.
So nothing less than three points will do as they bid to hold off Tottenham, Arsenal, Sheffield United and Burnley in a fascinating battle for European places.
Wolves made an impressive start coming out of lockdown, winning three in a row, but have since won just once in their last four matches. They should have beaten Burnley last time out, only to ship a last-gasp penalty leveller, but will be confident of getting back on track against a Palace side in dismal form.
There was talk of the Eagles mounting a Euro push after they had won four league games in a row but since then they have lost six in a row.
Roy Hodgson's men played pretty well in their last match against Manchester United yet two big VAR calls went again them as they crashed to a 2-0 defeat. So it's hard to see them beating a Wolves side who have far more to play for heading down the final straight.
How the bookies view it
The Eagles have drawn a blank in five of their last six games so the logical choice is a Wolves win to nil at 21/20 with Sportingbet.
Recent head to head
The Eagles have held the edge in this fixture over the last decade, losing just once in seven meetings. During that run they have beaten Wolves four times, including a 2-0 triumph at Molineux last season.
When the sides faced off earlier in this campaign at Selhurst Park, it ended in a 1-1 draw, with Wolves equalising at the death through Diogo Jota despite being down to 10 men after a Roman Saiss red card (below).
Players to watch
Raul Jimenez has netted in his last two games for Wolves and I thought he might be odds-on for a goal here. But the Mexican is 11/10 with Paddy Power in the anytime scorer market and that looks good value. He's also a boosted 5/1 with the same firm to score two or more.
Only the tightest of offside calls from VAR denied Jordan Ayew a goal for Palace against Manchester United last time out. He's by far the biggest threat for the Eagles and is overpriced at 5/1 with Bet365 to net here.
Anything else catch the eye?
Wolves have taken a bit of time to warm up since lockdown, with only one of their goals coming in the first half. So try the second period to be the highest scoring half at 5/4 with PaddyPower.
Betfred are also offering 11/10 on there being over 0.5 goals and over 4.5 corners in the second half and that looks a good option.
Betting on a 0-0 draw at half-time came up for me in Wolves' last match and it could be worth a punt again at 8/5 with Betfair here.
This English Premier League match between Wolves and Crystal Palace will be played on Jul 20, 2020 and kick off at 20:15. Check below for our tipsters best Wolves vs Crystal Palace prediction.