Pellegrini: Zabaleta is a player you can trust totally

Pablo Zabaleta and Manuel Pellegrini

Manuel Pellegrini will have to make a change at right-back today, but he has no doubting the quality of the man who is poised to step up.

Ryan Fredericks misses out at Selhurst Park after collecting five bookings for the season, giving Pablo Zabaleta the opportunity to fill his shoes.

Zabaleta has represented the Hammers with distinction since arriving from Pellegrini's former club Manchester City in the summer of 2017, and the boss is sure he is up to the task in south London.

"If there is a player you can trust it is Pablo Zabaleta," the manager said.

"He's an intelligent player, he dominates the game from his position and I think he is absolutely able not only to play against Crystal Palace, but in these four games he may continue playing.

"There is no doubt about him."

Pellegrini also has no doubt that Felipe Anderson will recover his best form after failing to hit the back of the net so far this season. In fact, the manager would not be surprised to see the Brazilian break that duck over the Christmas period.

"Everyone expects more from him, starting from Felipe himself," he added.

"He made a big impact last season here, scoring eight or nine goals and making lots of assists.

"He is working hard and he will recover [that form]. I continue trusting him."