So after the farce that is the international break, we return to Premier League action. And what better way to kick-off the weekend than the North London derby. There are eight games on Saturday, with the late kick-off at Carrow Road where Norwich City host Man Utd. Another game that stands out, is the relegation battle between QPR and Southampton. But let’s started with my beloved Gunners.
The Gunners have been struggling of late, failing to hold on to leads against both Schalke and Fulham. Those defensive frailties seem to back and the Gunner’s have not been helped by the lack of an established No. 1. In the attacking third, Olivier Giroud is starting to turn out the performances expected of him. Spurs on the other hand, have had a good start, if not explosive. Fans are still unsure about AVB, and have questioned his tactics but a win could take them in to the top four. My heart wants an Arsenal victory, however my head suggests this may be a score draw.
Arsenal 2 Tottenham 2
Brendon Rodgers’ Liverpool host Wigan at Anfield this weekend and he will expecting his side to take all three points. After impressing against Chelsea, Liverpool will want to kick-on and start making moves up the table. Luis Suarez tops the goal-scoring charts at the moment and has been superb for a below-par Liverpool side. Wigan have had a good start to the season, sitting just behind the Reds and having already beaten Spurs and West Ham this season. This game will be tight and Liverpool will just edge it.
Liverpool 1 Wigan 0
Man City remain unbeaten in the Premier League this season and that record will continue this weekend. However, they have to improve on how they start games, often having to play catch up this season. If they can get off to a good start early, this game could be over quickly. Villa have continued to struggle this season but seemed to have turned things around when they went 2-0 against Man Utd. However, they capitulated. Expect City to breeze past Villa.
Man City 2 Aston Villa 0
Newcastle have been rather disappointing this season and currently sit tenth in the league. Cisse has been quiet whilst Cabaye has not been his usual influential self. Swansea have only lost once in the last five games and could leap-frog Newcastle with a victory at Newcastle. This game will be a tight one, and I can see Newcastle’s indifferent form continuing.
Newcastle 1 Swansea 2
Both clubs have had awful starts to the season, with QPR failing to register a single victory this season. Southampton haven’t been much better themselves, only winning once. QPR have spent a vast amount of money this season putting together a new side, but as yet they have failed to impress as a team. Southampton have spent big on Ramirez, but once again he is failing to show his true class. Expect this to be a low-scoring affair.
QPR 1 Southampton 1
Reading are still to taste victory this season and that poor run of form is set to continue this weekend with the visit of Everton. David Moyes’ men have been in fantastic form and are currently sitting in fourth place. Fellaini has been unplayable this season as his stock continues to rise. Along with the impressive Miralles and Osman, expect the Toffees to register a comfortable victory.
Reading 0 Everton 2
The Baggies are on a high at the moment after a fantastic start to life under Steve Clarke. They have only lost once at home this season to champions Man City, and they could move within a point of Chelsea with a victory. Chelsea will be keen to close the three point gap between themselves and United after dropping to third in the league. Despite West Brom’s form, I expect Chelsea to edge it.
West Brom 1 Chelsea 2
Saturday’s tea-time kick-off sees the leaders United make the trip to Norfolk to play Norwich City. The Canaries have only lost once at home this season and will need to continue to grind results out at Carrow Rd if they are to beat the drop. However, United will have both Hernandez and Van Persie, so expect goals. Sorry Norwich.
Norwich 0 Man Utd 4
The Cottagers are hot on the heels of both Arsenal and Spurs and will be looking to take advantage should the North London derby end in a draw. Martin Jol’s side look a much stronger outfit this season, especially with the acquisition of Berbatov. Martin O’Neill’s Sunderland continue to struggle for goals and expect the same on Sunday. Though close, Fulham should edge it.
Fulham 1 Sunderland 0
West Ham have surprised us all this season and currently sit in sixth place in the league. They have recently drawn against the champions and beat Newcastle 1-0 and will look to continue their excellent run of form at home this Monday. Stoke’s form have been indifferent this season and things will not be easy on Monday night.
West Ham 1 Stoke 0