Cole was injured during the 2-2 draw with Tottenham yesterday and came off with a hamstring injury.
Manager Sam Allardyce – having claimed last week that new signing Nene is still two weeks away from being match fit – is now with few offensive options.
He revealed that Cole had pulled his hamstring and claimed he was close to making his third and final change at the time.
Looking ahead to the Palace and Chelsea clashed Allardyce told the official site: “Nene would have probably featured anyway but he will definitely be involved now because we’re down to the two strikers with Andy Carroll’s injury and Carlton Cole’s new hamstring problem.
“Enner Valencia and Diafra Sakho did a fantastic job – like the whole team – against Tottenham. It was just a shame we were not all going out celebrating another victory.”