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Crystal Palace vs. Chelsea: Team news, TV & streaming information, preview

Scott Heavey

And we're back!  After the seemingly never-ending international break (so good we'll get to do it again in a little less than a month!), the weekend and Chelsea football almost managed to sneak up on us without any warning.  Which would've been a shame, as it's a most wonderful time to be a Chelsea fan: the Blues are in the midst of our second best ever start to the Premier League with 19 points out of a possible 21.

We resume our quest for the Premier League title by returning to one of the many scenes of the crime that was Chelsea throwing away the trophy at the end of last season.  Adding insult to injury, we were actually outplayed by Tony Pulis's Palace in the 1-0 shocker at Selhurst Park.  On a positive note, we have not lost an away league match since then (5 wins and 1 draw).

Surprisingly, despite an 11th place finish, Pulis and Palace parted ways a couple months ago.  Neil Warnock -- whom we last had the "pleasure" of seeing with QPR -- is the new man in charge, returning to the club he left when they entered administration in 2010.  Not quite the glorious return of, say, Jose Mourinho, who now, incidentally, has been in charge of Chelsea longer than half all other Football League managers have been in charge of their respective clubs.

Needless to say, Chelsea cannot afford a slip-up just yet, not with a trip to Old Trafford looming next and a trip to Anfield following not long after that.  While we do have a five-point cushion over second place Manchester City, we have to save some of that for the traditional winter-is-coming/winter-blues bad moment.

Date/Time: Saturday, October 18, 2014, 15:00 BST; 10am EDT; 7:30pm IST

Venue: Selhurst Park, London, England

Referee: Craig Pawson -- if you haven't heard the name, there's a good reason for that: this will be Pawson's first ever Chelsea match.  He did serve as the fourth official in our 6-3 win at Everton.  At barely over 35 years old, he is the third youngest Premier League referee and one of the group of three newest who were appointed at the start of last season.

Forecast: Cloudy, breezy, with a good chance of something the BBC call "sharp showers."  Sounds dangerous.

On TV: none (UK); NBCSN, mun2 (USA); Star Sports 4 (India)

Online: NBC Sports Live ExtraTelemundo (USA); Star Sports (India)

Crystal Palace Team News: Premier League Manager of the Month for September nominee Neil Warnock has an almost fully fit squad to choose from, which includes Premier League Player of the Month for September nominee Mile Jedinak.  The one injury victim is defender Scott Dann who had formed a steady partnership with veteran Damien Delaney.

Warnock may speak highly of Mourinho and Chelsea, but he will be hoping to stay strong, disciplined -- they do lead the league in fouls committed -- and hit the Blues on the break with wide-men Jason Puncheon and Yannick Bolasie.  Palace produced nothing in their 2-0 loss away to Hull City on Matchday 7 after a successful September, and they will surely be looking to rediscover that earlier form.

Chelsea Team News: Premier League Manager of the Month for September nominee Jose Mourinho has nowhere near a fully fit squad to choose form, which includes Premier League Player of the Month for September snub Diego Costa.  Costa's actual injury status may be anywhere from injured for three weeks to ready to score three goals.  Or somewhere in between.  Or both at the same time.  It's a mystery, wrapped in a riddle.  And kinesio tape.

Didier Drogba, Ramires, and John Obi Mikel are all carrying knocks of unknowns severities, or are still just attempting to come back from previous injuries, while André Schürrle is recovering from some sort of illness he picked up on international duty.  It's not quite an Arsenal-level injury situation, but it's time to start managing things, especially with a busy schedule of 7 games in the next 21 days coming up.

John Terry is set to captain Chelsea for the 500th time.

Previously: This will be 35th league meeting between the two sides.  Of the previous 34, Palace have only beaten Chelsea five times (with Chelsea coming out on top 15 times).

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