This weekend’s FA Cup tie with London rivals Tottenham Hotspur provides a pleasant break from the Premier League for Crystal Palace. The Eagles haven't won in nine league matches, a run that include five straight defeats, since they beat Stoke City 2-1 at the Britannia Stadium.
Palace’s poor run of form has coincided with some of their key players being ruled out through injury, Yannick Bolasie being one of them. Another big miss for Alan Pardew's side has been James McArthur, who was recently ruled out for the rest of the season. The FA Cup however has been a positive experience for them so far during their difficult period, as they beat Southampton 2-1 in the Third Round and followed that up with a fourth round victory over Stoke City at Selhurst Park.
Speaking in the run-up towards Sunday's fixture, Alan Pardew spoke about the importance of the tie, and how it might be won.
He stressed the need for them to "win a game", and they're "going there [to White Hart Lane] to win", because a replay would be another game that they don't need at the moment.
"Spurs are in a confident position, we're in a more desperate one."
Team news - Palace
Palace will be hoping to welcome Yannick Bolasie back to the starting XI, with the Congolese having returned to full training after a hip injury. Dwight Gayle could return from a hamstring injury; however Jason Puncheon remains out of contention. Pape Souaré will also be missing as he serves the first match of his suspension after his red card against Watford last weekend.
In contrast to the Eagles, Tottenham go into this game on the back of excellent league form. Mauricio Pochettino's side are unbeaten in five league games, all of them being victories; form that has seen them move up to second in the Premier League table.
In the FA Cup, Spurs confidently brushed aside League One side Colchester in the previous round, and before that it took a third round replay for them to get past league rivals Leicester City.
Manger Pochettino is confident his side are well prepared to continue their good form.
He said their mentality "is perfect", and the players "just want to play every game" in his pre-match press conference.
"They feel they are strong, feel they can all play every game and win every game."
Team news - Tottenham
Michel Vorm will start in goal for the home side as first-choice goalkeeper Hugo Lloris recovers from a shoulder injury. Midfielder Tom Carroll will miss out after picking up an Achilles injury during the 1-1 draw with Fiorentina in the Europa League on Thursday evening. Jan Vertonghen and Clinton N'jie both remain on the sidelines due to respective knee injuries.