Another festive feast of Premier League action awaits us this weekend, as Liverpool look to bounce back from a horror show last weekend.
The Reds appeared to be cruising at Bournemouth, but their 3-1 lead evaporated late on and the eventual 4-3 defeat was tough to stomach.
Jurgen Klopp‘s side welcome struggling West Ham to Anfield on Sunday, in a game the hosts must win in order to avoid an extended slump.
Elsewhere last weekend, Chelsea beat Man City 3-1 at the Etihad, in a result that has made Antonio Conte’s men December favourites for the title.
Arsenal and Tottenham enjoyed thumping wins over West Ham and Swansea City, respectively, while a Leighton Baines penalty earned Everton a late 1-1 draw at home to Man United.
Sunderland beat Leicester City, as the champions continue to struggle, while fellow relegation candidates Hull City and Burnley lost to Middlesbrough and Stoke City, respectively.
Crystal Palace also got a much-needed victory over Southampton.
There are 10 Premier League game ahead of us this weekend—here are the five that stand out.
Buoyant Spurs Can Damage United’s Top-Four Ambitions
Man United have really allowed this season to get away from them, and their dropping of two points at Goodison Park left them nine off fourth place.
On Sunday, Jose Mourinho’s men host fifth-placed Spurs, and if the north Londoners can nick a win at Old Trafford, it would leave United in dire straits.
Neither side has found top gear yet in 2016/17, and this is likely to be an attritional affair. Don’t expect too many goals.
Spurs’ 5-0 drubbing of Swansea will have given them an injection of confidence, but we all know what they are like away to the big teams.
Champions vs. Title Hopefuls at the King Power
Leicester‘s defence of their title continues to stutter at an alarming rate—they now sit just two points off the relegation zone.
Not many expected the champions to be this poor this season, and they could be in real trouble if they don’t turn things around quickly.
Their 5-0 defeat to Porto in the Champions League in midweek was another bad night at the office.
On Saturday evening, Man City are the visitors to the King Power Stadium, and they are not exactly a side brimming with self-belief themselves.
Their defeat to Chelsea will have hit them hard, and they are already at a stage where losing further ground on their title rivals could feel fatal.
Can Pulis Do Chelsea’s Rivals a Favour?
Chelsea look very strong at the moment, winning eight Premier League games in succession. Every player is performing superbly, and a winning mentality has been created.
With a kind-looking run of fixtures coming up, their rivals at the top have every right to feel slightly concerned.
Conte’s men are at home to West Brom on Sunday lunchtime, and the Baggies are enjoying a productive run of their own at the moment.
They have won three of their last four in the league, drawing the other, and they are just a point behind United.
If Tony Pulis and his team could sneak a draw or even a win at Stamford Bridge, that would be much appreciated.
Impressive Arsenal Expected to Down Stoke
Arsenal‘s 5-1 dismantling of West Ham last weekend showed exactly what they are capable of, with Alexis Sanchez in particularly stunning form.
While everyone talks about Chelsea, City and Liverpool, the Gunners are going quietly about their business, sitting second in the table.
We all know that they invariably have a meltdown in them, but Arsene Wenger’s side should not be discounted from the title race.
They welcome a potentially tricky Stoke outfit to the Emirates on Saturday afternoon, but anything other than a comfortable home win would be a shock.
Swans Look to Tame Black Cats
With every week that passes, the more the relegation fight takes shape.
Swansea and Sunderland look guaranteed to be in the mix between now and May, and the two meet at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday.
Pressure is really building on Swans manager Bob Bradley, and should they fail to beat the Black Cats, the American may find himself nearing the Liberty exit.
Sunderland have picked up nine points from a possible 12, and there are signs that David Moyes may be steering them to safety.
This weekend’s showdown will be a good indication of where both teams are at—it’s a tough one to predict.
Fixtures & UK TV Info
Watford vs. Everton – Saturday 12:30pm, Sky Sports 1
Arsenal vs. Stoke – Saturday 3pm
Burnley vs. Bournemouth – Saturday 3pm
Hull vs. Crystal Palace – Saturday 3pm
Swansea vs. Sunderland – Saturday 3pm
Leicester vs. Man City – Saturday 5:30pm, BT Sport 1
Chelsea vs. West Brom – Sunday 12pm, BT Sport 1
Man United vs. Tottenham – Sunday 2:15pm, Sky Sports 1
Southampton vs. Middlesbrough – Sunday 2:15pm
Liverpool vs. West Ham – Sunday 4:30pm, Sky Sports 1