So the waiting is over now that the internationals are done and week 8 is suddenly upon us. Here are this week’s Premier League weekend predictions. All looks straightforward as usual!
Premier League Weekend Predictions – Saturday
Manchester City v Tottenham 3-0
Man City have had a great run against Spurs in recent league meetings, winning six out the last seven. The recent 6-0 drubbing is likely to be in the back of Tottenham minds as the players run out.
City look like they might rest Yaya Toure as the midfield general isn’t due back from international duty until today. In that case, Manuel Pellegrini should start with loanee Frank Lampard in his midfield lineup. Star Spurs goalie Hugo Lloris and goal-source Nacer Chadli are doubtful after picking up injuries during the international break. Of Spurs’ nine league goals this season, Chadli has been involved in five of them (four goals, one assist).
Spurs have played fairly well away from home so far this season but they need goals. And these are few and far between right now. Can’t see this changing, especially with Adebayor a doubt for this match. On the other hand, City have plenty of goals in them and especially at the Etihad.
Thorn in Spurs’ side Edin Dzeko has now scored six goals in six Premier League games against Tottenham.Sergio Aguerooooooooo has slotted in five goals in five league matches against Spurs.
However, amazingly Manchester City are winless in their last two home games in the league. That should change unless Tottenham produce something very special.
Arsenal v Hull 2-0
Looks pretty straightforward. Maybe Hull will be up for it because of last year’s FA Cup Final. Let’s see.
The Gunners have won their last five in a row against Hull in the league.
Burnley v West Ham 1-2
Winless so far, Burnley have only scored three goals in seven matches this season – the lowest number in the league. Almost as worrying is that they also have the lowest shot conversion ratio (5%).
On the bright side, Burnley are unbeaten in their last three league meetings with West Ham (W2, D1).These are of course just stats but West Ham have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last 13 Premier League meetings with Burnley.
The Irons have already won three of their first seven EPL games this season, having won three of their opening 20 league matches last season.
If Burnley are to win their first game this season, they will have to deal with West Ham properly at set pieces. The Hammers have more set piece goals than any other Premier League side (6 in 2014/15)
Crystal Palace v Chelsea 1-3
Can’t see Palace producing an upset against the power of the Chelsea machine right now. It would be a shame from a neutral perspective to see Chelsea steamroll the season and take all the fun and interest out of it though.
Let it go down to the wire, we say. However, wouldn’t predict it.
Everton v Aston Villa 2-2
Too close to call. Everton at home gives them something extra. Villa are looking decent and it will be close run.
Newcastle v Leicester 1-2
Morale is low at Newcastle United. Leicester have goals in them as we saw against Manchester United and they will look to capitalise on any weakness shown. Will Pardew survive another week?
Southampton v Sunderland 2-2
Too close to call but Southampton have won the last 2 home games but Sunderland have a good record against the Saints.
Premier League Weekend Predictions – Sunday
QPR v Liverpool 1-2
It would be a real surprise if QPR could upset Liverpool. Worth considering the 14/1 Special being offered on Gerrard being first scorer in this match. ‘Arry is under real pressure right now and the lack of goals at QPR is a big worry for him. If they do score against Liverpool, you can be pretty sure they’ll be outgunned unless the Reds have an off day.
Stoke v Swansea 2-1
Only 3 points separate these two teams but Swansea (5th) are way up the table (Stoke are 16th) but that’s how it is early in the season. Stoke should be able to get back to winning ways here and draw level on points with the Swans.
Premier League Weekend Predictions – Monday
West Bromwich Albion v Manchester United 2-2
This is exactly the kind of match where we will see whether or not United are a team capable of returning to the upper echelons of the EPL. The Baggies do pose a threat in attack and may be able to grab some goals in front of the home fans and if they do United will have the firepower to respond.
The big question is, can United finish them off? The Leicester experience points to a ‘no’. If that becomes a ‘yes’ then perhaps United really are back to their old selves again.