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Sturridge outshines Kane, Rafa wins at Norwich – 5 Premier League predictions

The Premier League returns this weekend, following the international break, which means five more iffy predictions ahead of the action.

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - Sunday, March 20, 2016: Liverpool's Daniel Sturridge celebrates scoring the second goal against Southampton during the FA Premier League match at St Mary's Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

We are now well into the business end of the 2015/16 season, with matches becoming increasingly important by the week.

Table-toppers Leicester host Southampton, as they look to enhance their chances of an unrivalled title win, while fellow hopefuls Tottenham face Liverpool at Anfield.

West Ham, Man United and Man City now look in a three-way tussle for a fourth-place finish – the Reds aren’t quite out of the reckoning just yet, though – and they all have winnable matches this weekend.

Newcastle‘s trip to Norwich is massive in the relegation battle, with victory for either potentially vital in their quest to stay in the Premier League.

This is just a taste of the action, and here are our ever-questionable predictions for the upcoming action.


Man City Slip Up Once Again

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - Tuesday, December 8, 2015: Manchester City's manager Manuel Pellegrini during the UEFA Champions League Group D match against VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach at the City of Manchester Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Despite looking extremely strong favourites to win the Premier League around September time, City’s league campaign has petered out alarmingly.

Their 1-0 defeat at home to rivals United in their last game summed up their increased toothlessness, and they are now in danger of not even finishing in the Champions League places.

That would be fairly hilarious, with Pep Guardiola set to take over from Manuel Pellegrini in the summer.

On Saturday, City head to Bournemouth, which is exactly the kind of game their ageing, almost disinterested players lose.

Whether or not they are defeated on the South Coast remains to be seen, but they will not win, which will do their top-four hopes no good whatsoever.


Rafa Works His Magic at Carrow Road

BOLTON, ENGLAND - SUNDAY AUGUST 29th 2004: Liverpool's manager Rafael Benitez before the match against Bolton during the Premiership match at the Reebok Stadium. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Rafa Benitez earned his first point as Newcastle manager in the Tyne-Wear derby against Sunderland two weeks ago, and he faces an equally crucial relegation battle at Norwich on Saturday.

The Spaniard was always at his best at Liverpool when his teams defended doggedly and stung the opposition on the counter-attack, and this will surely be his plan against the Canaries.

Benitez will have had a couple of weeks to work with a number of non-internationals, and he will have his side well-prepared for Saturday’s showdown.

There is a certain naivety about Norwich – defensively they are suspect – and Benitez will pounce at Carrow Road, heading back north with three points in the bag.


Arsenal Gain Revenge on Watford in Style

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - Sunday, September 23, 2012: Arsenal's manager Arsène Wenger before the Premiership match against Manchester City at the City of Manchester Stadium. (Pic by Vegard Grott/Propaganda)

Arsenal may have made a mess of their title challenge – only they could capitulate in the manner they have – but their 2-0 win at Everton a fortnight ago steadied the ship.

The Gunners may have their flaws, but they are magnificent at churning out results in the final six weeks of the season.

Watford visit the Emirates on Saturday afternoon, having dumped Arsenal out of the FA Cup in the quarter-finals, but the hosts will prevail this time.

Arsene Wenger’s side know exactly how to get over the finish line, in terms of a top-four finish, and this will be a routine victory against a team with almost nothing to play for in the league.

Should Leicester and Spurs both fail to win, their title hopes may not be over just yet.


Boredom at the King Power

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Boxing Day, Saturday, December 26, 2015: Leicester City's manager Claudio Ranieri before the Premier League match against Liverpool at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Despite still getting positive results at a relentless rate, Leicester‘s football has actually been fairly dull to watch in recent weeks.

The Foxes have ground out successive 1-0 wins against Crystal Palace, Newcastle and Watford, and it has been their rock-solid defence that has shone brightest.

Claudio Ranieri’s side face an equally well-drilled Southampton side on Sunday – don’t let their entertaining 3-2 win over Liverpool fool you – and it could be a game of few chances.

While it will receive plenty of pre-match build-up, given Leicester‘s amazing title charge and Southampton‘s slim top-four hopes, it will be a match that fails to deliver.

If the game isn’t a goalless draw, it will be a 1-0 win either way.


Sturridge Outshines Kane at Anfield

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - Sunday, March 20, 2016: Liverpool's Daniel Sturridge celebrates scoring the second goal against Southampton during the FA Premier League match at St Mary's Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

England look strong in attack heading into Euro 2016, and Harry Kane’s goalscoring feats have seen him establish himself as the Three Lions’ first-choice striker.

The 22-year-old has shown that he is far more than just a one-season wonder, and he will be a key figure against Liverpool this weekend.

Daniel Sturridge is returning to his best, following such rotten luck with injuries, and he will no doubt be hurt at being behind Kane in the international pecking order.

Both Englishman are arguably the most important players at their clubs, and whoever takes their chances on Saturday could be key to the result.

It will be Sturridge who comes out on top, however, with the 26-year-old finding the back of the net – it may just be enough to earn Jurgen Klopp‘s side all three points at Anfield.

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