By Alex Stevens
Crystal Palace manager Alan Pardew is expecting former Liverpool striker Christian Benteke to haunt his old club in the Premier League clash at Selhurst Park on Saturday evening.
The Liverpool reject joined Palace in the summer for a club-record fee of £27million and has since established himself as their main striker, scoring three goals in seven Premier League appearances.
Talking in The Mirror, Pardew thinks Benteke will be especially motivated to perform against the club that sold him.
“When you have not had the opportunities you perhaps thought you deserved, you’re going to have an extra bit of stimulus,” he said.
“I would if I was him so I expect him to be more charged than normal. It makes sense, I think it is just natural human reaction. His play on the pitch is powerful, he is a handful for centre-halves. I think if I was a centre-half I certainly wouldn’t want to play against him.
“He can jump seven feet and catch it on his chest, he is one of those types of strikers. He is tight technically, we just need to get him a bit better service.
“He is playing with a smile on his face. I think that makes a difference to a footballer where you feel that you are wanted and you are part of the team.”
Liverpool have had a great start to the season, and Pardew knows it will be a hard match. “They are the in-form team so for us it is going to be a difficult game,” he said.