Saturday’s Big 7 Premiership Predictor

Arsenal v Chelsea Sat 21 Apr 12:45

Arsenal suffered a shock defeat at the hands of Wigan on Monday night
A goal from Thomas Vermaelen wasn’t enough to avoid a 2-1 defeat

That was Vermaelen’s 6th goal of the season, making him the league’s top scoring defender and Arsenal’s fourth top scorer this season

Vermaelen’s goals have come from 33 shots on target, with 21 on target
That puts Vermaelen above players such as Gabriel Agbonlahor, Ashley Young, Didier Drogba, Fernando Torres and Andy Carroll in the Premier League goal scoring tables

Vermaelen has also chipped in defensively with 73 interceptions and 25 clearances for Arsenal this season

Overall, Vermaelen has covered 126.59 miles this season, averaging 5.07 miles per game

Chelsea will be on a high after a controversial but comprehensive FA cup semi final victory over Spurs

Chelsea’s last league outing was a 1-1 draw with Fulham in which Frank Lampard became the first midfielder in Premier League history to score 150 goals in the competition

Lampard’s is the league’s third highest scoring Englishman after Wayne Rooney and Grant Holt with eleven goals this season, and is the second highest scoring midfielder in the league after Clint Dempsey

Lampard’s goals have come from 50 shots on target, meaning 22% of his shots have resulted in goals this season, a better chance conversion rate than league top scorer Robin van Persie

Lampard has also won 56% of tackles, and got five assists this season

Lampard has covered 155.64 miles this season in total, covering the most ground for Chelsea in five games and averaging 5.56 miles per game

Lampard was then one of five different goal scorers in the FA Cup along with Drogba, Mata, Malouda and Ramires

Drogba has divided opinion this season, and has just five Premier League goals to his name from 57 shots at goal with just 47% on target

Arsenal will need their home advantage and my guess is they will use it wisely. Chelsea walked over Spurs in the FA Cup, but the win against Barca will have taken it’s toll and I would expect to see a few tired legs out there on the hour mark. Neither can afford to drop a single point here and I think Arsenal will pinch this by a single goal.

Aston Villa v Sunderland Sat 21 Apr 15:00

Last weekend saw Man United dominate Villa, the final result was over shadowed by a very suspect Danny Wellbeck dive.

Gary Gardner, who has spent much of the season on the fringes of the Aston Villa squad, covered the most distance for Aston Villa against Man United. He covered 6.03 miles and hit a top speed 26 miles per hour.

Stephen Warnock has clocked up the most miles for Villa over the course of the season. He’s covered a commendable 171.4 miles in his 31 appearances this season.

According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, Warnock has averaged 5.5 miles per game, so far this season.

Stephen Warnock has completed 77.4% of the tackles he’s attempted this season. Only Maynor Figueroa has a higher tackle completion percentage, 81.4%, according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index.

According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, Jamie Collins has completed the most interceptions in the Premier League this season. The 28 year old has completed 206 interceptions, 42 more than his nearest rival Wolves’ Roger Johnson.

Sebastian Larsson has topped the individual distance covered per game in Sunderland’s previous four fixtures. Based on Sunderland’s previous four fixtures Larsson has covered, on average, 6.3 miles according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index.

Stephane Sessegnon has been Sunderland’s most selfless player so far this season. He’s has picked up eleven assists this season. That puts him 7th of the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index for assists.

Aston Villa are, ‘as we speak’ only 6 points off the drop zone which is to say tantalizingly close to getting sucked in and spat out into the Championship. The future’s not bright. It ought not be mistaken for bright. Sunderland are having furtive thoughts of a top ten finish for the first time since 1792. Prediction: 0-2

Blackburn v Norwich Sat 21 Apr 15:00

Despite six goals going past Norwich last weekend John Ruddy remains second in the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index behind Wayne Hennessey for total saved made this season.

Ruddy has completed 193 saves so far this season where as Hennessey has completed 223 saves.

Steven Nzoni is one of a handful of players this season to have crossed the 200-mile mark for distance covered this season. The Index shows us he’s completed 202.4 over the course of the season.

According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, Steven Nzoni has averaged a remarkable 6.3 miles in every Premier League fixture he has featured in.

Kyle Naughton has been the Norwich workhorse this season, the 23 year old defender has covered a 165.5 miles in his 29 appearances so far this season.

Paul Lambert made a double substitution at half time last weekend, bringing on Andrew Surman and Wesley Hoolahan to revitalise Norwich.

Surman duly replied with a goal in the 51st minute, his fourth of the season.

Ryan Bennett escaped a second yellow card after seemingly making contact with Tevez. In Bennett’s four appearances for the Canaries this season he’s committed eight fouls and has been shown one yellow card all season.

Wesley Hoolahan injected some much need vigour into the Norwich midfield after the break. The EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows us he covered 3.4 miles in the second half, alone.

The Canaries nearly took the lead but Grant Holt was unlucky to have his header cleared off the line. Holt has scored 13 goals this season and according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index 61% of his total shots have been on target.

Blackburn are so incompetent that they are now pretty much reliant upon other people being even worse than they are. Wolves will oblige, but Wigan seem to have scarpered so that leaves Bolton, QPR or Villa to step in and be exceptionally useless. Norwich have had a brilliant season and this trip won’t phase them. Prediction: 1-3

Bolton v Swansea Sat 21 Apr 15:00

Swansea look to be turning the corner after claiming there first three points in five games against Blackburn last weekend.

Gylfi Sigurdsson put the first of three goals in for Swansea last weekend, bagging his 7th of the season, in the process.

The EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows us 68% Gylfi Sigurdsson shots this season have been on target.

Not only does Nathan Dyer put balls in the box for Swansea, he occasionally puts them in the back of the net.

The EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows us he’s delivered 346 crosses this season and also picking up three assists in the process. Dyer Also bagged his forth goal of the season against Bolton.

According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, Nigel Reo Coker has been the rock in the Bolton defense, this season. He’s completed 75% of all tackles he’s attempted.

He’s also covered a total of 179.3 miles this season and averaging 5.7 miles in every Premier League match he features in.

Scott Sinclair tops the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index for dribbles completed alongside Spurs’ Gareth Bale. They’ve both completed 107 dribbles this season.

Sinclair who has covered 182.2 miles this season has spent plenty of time with the ball at his feet. According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, Sinclair averages three dribbles per game.

Danny Graham has bagged ten goals this season for Swansea. His ten goals have come from 33 shots on target, giving Graham a success rate of 30% according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index

Joe Allan has been crucial to Swansea’s success so far this season. Allan has completed 766 passes in his 32 appearances, this season. Which means Allan completes a pass in the opposition half every 3 minutes according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index

Zat Knight has completed 185 defensive duties in his 23 appearances this season, which means on average Zat has completes eight defensive duties every time he plays for Bolton.

Bolton deserve to go down.  They’ve blundered about to no good purpose all season and sold off their only player of any discernible value. Swansea have had a ‘blip’ of late but Premiership campaigns aren’t easy and the whole point is to put you to the test. Brendan Rodgers walks on water blah blah blah Prediction: 0-2

Fulham v Wigan Sat 21 Apr 15:00

Wigan will be looking to continue their recent impressive Premier League form after beating Arsenal mid-week and Man Utd last weekend.

Clint Dempsey scored his 16th goal of season to secure a point for Fulham against Chelsea back on the 9th April.

According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, Clint Dempsey has had the third most shots on target this season.

Dempsey has made the keeper work 76 times this season. Only RVP and Wayne Rooney have had more shots on target.

According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index 61% of Dempsey’s shots have been on target this season.

Maynor Figueroa is currently the toughest defender to beat in the Premier League. According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index Figueroa has completed 81.4% of the tackles he’s attempted this season.

Brede Hangeland has been like a second goalkeeper for Fulham this season. He’s made 31 blocks this season according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index.

Victor Moses, Al Habsi and Maynor Figueroa are the only three Wigan players who have featured in every one of Wigan’s Premier League fixtures.

Moses, Figueroa and Al Habsi are also three of only 12 Premier League Players to have featured in every Premier League fixture.

Franco Di Santo and Jordie Gomez both scored their fourth goals as they both scored in consecutive minutes against Arsenal.

According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, 56% of Di Santo’s shots this season have been on target.

However Jordi Gomez has had 34 chances at goal this season 58% have been on target according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index

Bizarrely, this could be one the best games of the weekend. Fulham and Wigan are both playing good football. Obviously Fulham are looking at a top ten finish and can’t really complain about that. Wigan appear to have made a miraculous escape from relegation. Appear. Prediction: 2-2

Newcastle v Stoke Sat 21 Apr 15:00

Papiss Cisse scored in the 83rd minute against Bolton, to ensure Newcastle took all three points from a Bolton side desperate not to slip into the relegation zone.

Papiss has been undoubtedly formidable this season. He’s scored ten goals in just nine games and has only had 25 shots in total.

According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, 72% on Pappiss’s shots have been on target.

According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index Ben Arfa has completed 40 dribbles this season. None more memorable than his 73rd minute goal against Bolton, which saw the 25 year old Frenchman picking the ball up in his own half and break 70 yards up the pitch before slotting past Bolton’s Bogdan.

Cisse picked up his 10th goal of the season after connecting with Shola Ameobi’s 10th cross of the season, according to the EA SPORTS Index.

Ryan Taylor has whipped in 78 crosses this season, more than any other Newcastle Player this season.

Super subs Peter Crouch and Jermaine Pennant brought Stoke back to life after Tony Pulis made a double-change on the hour mark.

Jermaine Pennant was called into action straight away whipping in a free kick as Robert Huth scored his second goal in two games against Aston Villa, taking his total to three this season.

Matthew Etherington is Stoke’s highest ranked player in the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index.

Etherington has scored three goals during the course of the season and those have come from just 20 shots. 16 of those shots have been on target, giving Etheringrton a 80% shots on target percentage according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index.

Newcastle are my tip for fourth, which as a Tottenham fan, doesn’t make for happy thoughts. These are the weeks that the big sides start to go through the gears and demonstrate that they have what it takes. I wouldn’t say Stoke have been found out as such, but if you look immediately above them in the league they have failed to keep up. Prediction: 2-1

QPR v Tottenham Sat 21 Apr 17:30

Tottenham will be looking to bounce back after their loss at home to the Canaries on the 9th April.

Gareth Bale tops the EA SPORTS Player performance Index for dribbles completed this season alongside Swansea’s Scott Sinclair. Bale and Sinclair have completed 107 dribbles each, so far this season.

Bale, on average, completes three dribbles in every Premier League fixture, according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index.

Defoe drew the sides level in the 33rd minute as he dinked the ball over the Norwich keeper.

According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, 17% of Jermaine Defoe total shots result in goals. Which in his current form, can be translated into every 1 in 5 shots.

Ledley King was lucky to not be given a yellow card and award Norwich a penalty after pulling Grant Holts shirt in the box.

However the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows us King play has only committed eight fouls this season and hasn’t been shown a single yellow card.

It was Jake Livermore’s pass, which split the Norwich defence to find Defoe last weekend. Livermore has completed just 189 passes in the opposition half, showing that it’s not the amount it’s the quality of the passes that count.

Gareth Bale is Tottenham’s highest-ranking player in the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, he is currently 10th in the 620 player strong index.

Kyle Walker is a young English player looking to book his seat on the plane to EURO 2012. He’s Tottenham’s third largest provider of crosses. According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index he’s completed 67 crosses and he’s also picked up one assist this season.

Luka Modric has been spreading the ball all over the park for Tottenham this season.

The EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows us he’s currently third in the overall standing’s for passes completed in the opposition half. He’s completed 1,089 passes. Leading the way is Mikel Arteta who has completed 1188 passes this season.

Oh dear Harry, what have you done? From 10 point lead to public humiliation at Wembley and now he’s planning to cheer Chelsea on in the Champions League. Little but a win at Loftus Road will spare him from some considerable abuse now and QPR haven’t lost at home since 1972. I exaggerate, but he does have his work cut out. Prediction: 1-1

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