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Nottingham Forest logo
Premier League | Gameweek 30
Mar 30, 2024 at 3pm UK
The City Ground
Crystal Palace logo

Nott'm Forest
1 - 1
Crystal Palace

Wood (61')
Felipe (49')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Mateta (11')
Schlupp (70')

Preview: Nottingham Forest vs. Crystal Palace - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Premier League clash between Nottingham Forest and Crystal Palace, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Having been plunged into treacherous waters following a four-point deduction by the Premier League, Nottingham Forest welcome Crystal Palace to the City Ground for a bottom-half clash on Saturday afternoon.

These two teams could not be separated the last time that they butted heads just over five months ago, as they played out a goalless stalemate at Selhurst Park.

Match preview

Nottingham Forest manager Nuno Espirito Santo before the match on February 28, 2024© Reuters

Four months after Everton were deducted 10 points – since reduced to six on appeal – for breaching the Premier League's Profit and Sustainability rules, Nottingham Forest were penalised with a four-point deduction for the same offence during the international break and have subsequently slipped into the relegation zone.

The Tricky Trees have decided to appeal, and although Premier League rules state that this process should be concluded "no later than and if possible some time before May 24" – five days after the season finishes – the case involving Forest is set to be resolved before then.

With nine games remaining to drag themselves away from danger, Nuno Espirito Santo's side now sit 18th in the top-flight table and are just one point behind 17th-placed Luton Town, who scored an 89th-minute equaliser to rescue a 1-1 draw against Forest at Kenilworth Road before the international break.

Forest have struggled to grind out positive results since the turn of the year, as they have won just one – a 2-0 victory over West Ham United in February – drawn two and lost six of their nine Premier League games in 2024, conceding 16 goals in the process.

In front of an expected raucous atmosphere at the City Ground on Saturday, Forest can be confident of success against Palace as they are unbeaten in their last seven Premier League meetings with the Eagles, including a 1-0 win in their last home encounter – this run is the longest that they have faced an opponent without losing and the longest for Palace without winning against another team in the division.

Crystal Palace manager Oliver Glasner before the match on February 24, 2024© Reuters

Since replacing Roy Hodgson in the Crystal Palace dugout, new manager Oliver Glasner has experienced a mixed start to life in the Premier League, with his Eagles side winning, drawing and losing one game each before the international break.

A comfortable 3-0 victory over Burnley and a 3-1 defeat at Tottenham Hotspur were followed by a disappointing 1-1 home draw with Luton Town last time out, with Jean-Philippe Mateta's early opener cancelled out by a dramatic 96th-minute equaliser by Hatters' striker Cauley Woodrow.

Palace, who sit 14th in the Premier League table and eight points clear of Forest in the relegation zone, have since made the most of a three-week period away from competitive action with a week's warm-weather training camp in Marbella.

During their brief spell in Spain, the Eagles beat Norwegian champions Bodo/Glimt 1-0 in a friendly fixture a week last Thursday, courtesy of a first-half goal from star midfielder Eberechi Eze.

Palace will now endeavour to end an eight-game winless away run when they face a Forest outfit whom they have beaten just once in their last 12 league meetings – a 1-0 triumph at the City Ground in December 2011 when both clubs were competing in the Championship.

Nottingham Forest Premier League form:

Nottingham Forest form (all competitions):

Crystal Palace Premier League form:

Team News

Nottingham Forest's Chris Wood celebrates scoring against Luton Town on March 16, 2024© Reuters

Nottingham Forest are set to be without full-backs Nuno Tavares and Gonzalo Montiel as they continue to recover from thigh injuries. Neco Williams and Harry Toffolo could start in defence as a result.

Chris Wood (knock), Taiwo Awoniyi, Ola Aina and Willy Boly (all muscle) – the latter of whom limped off with his problem in Ivory Coast's friendly draw with Benin on Tuesday – are all doubtful and will be assessed ahead of kickoff.

Either Felipe or Andrew Omobamidele could be handed a start in central defence if Boly is not deemed fit to feature, while the potential absence of Wood and Awoniyi may see Divock Origi start as a central striker, with Morgan Gibbs-White, Anthony Elanga and Callum Hudson-Odoi providing support in attack.

As for Crystal Palace, goalkeeper Sam Johnstone is set to miss the rest of the season after undergoing elbow surgery, and he joins Cheick Doucoure (Achilles), Marc Guehi (knee), Rob Holding (foot) and Michael Olise (thigh) in the treatment room.

Daniel Munoz will be assessed ahead of kickoff after picking up a minor issue on international duty with Colombia, while Matheus Franca (groin), Jeffrey Schlupp and Jesurun Rak-Sakyi (both thigh) are also doubtful.

Mateta, who has been involved in three goals (two goals, one assist) in his last four league appearances, is set to lead the line and could be joined in attack by Eze and Jordan Ayew, while former Forest loanee Dean Henderson is expected to start between the sticks in the absence of Johnstone.

Nottingham Forest possible starting lineup:
Sels; Williams, Felipe, Murillo, Toffolo; Sangare, Yates; Elanga, Gibbs-White, Hudson-Odoi; Origi

Crystal Palace possible starting lineup:
Henderson; Ward, Andersen, Richards; Munoz, Wharton, Lerma, Mitchell; Eze, Ayew; Mateta

SM words green background

We say: Nottingham Forest 1-1 Crystal Palace

A game without any controversial refereeing decisions is what every Forest fan is hoping for, just as much as their side claiming three precious points as they attempt to climb out of the relegation zone.

Palace have struggled away from home for some time, but the Eagles will be boosted by the fact that Forest have lost seven of their last nine matches at the City Ground. With that in mind, the spoils could be shared during a tight affair in front of a fired-up home crowd.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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Group A

Q Germany Germany22006
2 Switzerland Switzerland21104
3 Scotland flag Scotland20111
4 Hungary Hungary20020

Group B

Q Spain Spain22006
2 Italy Italy21013
3 Albania national flag Albania20111
4 Croatia Croatia20111

Group C

1 England flag England21104
2 Denmark Denmark20202
3 Slovenia Slovenia20202
4 Serbia Serbia20111

Group D

1 Netherlands Netherlands21104
2 France France21104
3 Austria Austria21013
4 Poland Poland20020

Group E

1 Romania Romania21013
2 Belgium Belgium21013
3 Slovakia Slovakia21013
4 Ukraine Ukraine21013

Group F

Q Portugal Portugal22006
2 Turkey Turkey21013
3 Czech Republic Czech Republic20111
4 Georgia Georgia20111

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