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One year after his injury, Crystal Palace defender Scott Dann should be handed a start

In Roy Hodgson’s pre-match press conference, the Crystal Palace manager confirmed that Martin Kelly will miss today’s match against Manchester City.

James Tomkins is set to return to action after serving his one-match suspension last weekend, but Roy Hodgson should instead reinstate Scott Dann into the starting lineup in a bid to foster defensive solidity.

Dann has been absent from Palace’s first team squad ever since suffering a devastating injury in December 2017, but the centre-half was named on the bench against Leicester City and appears ready to make his full return.

Tomkins has endured a torrid time at the back in recent weeks, notably producing an abysmal performance during the embarrassing loss away at Brighton.

Hodgson would do well to play Dann alongside Mamadou Sakho in the centre of defence, selecting Dann ahead of Tomkins.

(Photo by Catherine Ivill – AMA/Getty Images)

Surprisingly, Palace have appeared defensively suspect this campaign, conceding a number of soft goals and set piece strikes thus far.

The return of Dann would offer the Eagles rearguard an assured presence at centre-half who can deal with aerial threats with ease.

In addition, a match against Manchester City will always appear an uphill battle, giving Hodgson an ideal opportunity to test Dann’s readiness against the champions.

Almost 12 months after suffering a debilitating injury, Scott Dann deserves to complete his comeback to the starting lineup against Manchester City.

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