Table-topping clash headlines 3 big days of action – Premier League Preview

5 October 2018

Liverpool’s home encounter with Man City is the standout Premier League fixture this weekend; will any other game threaten to be as entertaining?


The Reds welcome Pep Guardiola’s champions to Anfield on Sunday afternoon, in what is the biggest match so far this season.

Now unquestionably two of Europe’s best teams—they may be the top-two on current form, ignoring Liverpool’s midweek loss at Napoli—promises to be a spectacular occasion at Anfield.

Away from the likely drama on Merseyside, there are nine other matches to enjoy, ahead of the second painful international break of the season.

Here’s a look at the rest of the action.

 

Brighton vs. West Ham – Friday, 8pm – Sky Sports Main Event

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, May 13, 2018: Brighton & Hove Albion's manager Chris Hughton during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Brighton & Hove Albion FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

We get a rare Friday night treat to the kick-off the weekend, with Brighton & Hove Albion entertaining a West Ham side riding the crest of a wave.

After a dreadful start which saw them lose four league games in a row, the Hammers have earned seven points from three outings, including a draw with Chelsea and wins against Everton and Man United.

Brighton sit 15th in the table and are yet to fully convince, so this will tell us a lot about where both sides are at.

Prediction: Brighton 1-2 West Ham

 

Burnley vs. Huddersfield – Saturday, 3pm

HUDDERSFIELD, ENGLAND - Saturday, August 26, 2017: Huddersfield Town's manager David Wagner before the FA Premier League match between Huddersfield Town and Southampton at the John Smith's Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

There’s always one fixture that looks like a shocker on paper…and it often involves Burnley, if we’re being completely honest!

Sean Dyche’s side are at home to a Huddersfield Town team looking destined for relegation as things stand, along with Cardiff City, in a match that won’t keep too many neutrals glued to their seats.

Burnley have predictably improved since being knocked out of the Europa League and it is difficult to see beyond a home win on Saturday.

Prediction: Burnley 1-0 Huddersfield

 

Crystal Palace vs. Wolves – Saturday, 3pm

Wolverhampton Wanderers' Conor Coady (Nick Potts/PA Archive/PA Images)

Wolves continue to impress and gain a new legion of admirers, with the newly promoted outfit ninth in the table and playing some lovely football.

They make the trip to Selhurst Park to take on Crystal Palace this weekend, with victory further outlining their European credentials.

Palace can be a tough team to get the better of at home, but they feel so reliant on Wilfried Zaha that it is bordering on embarrassing.

Score draw.

Prediction: Crystal Palace 1-1 Wolves

 

Leicester vs. Everton – Saturday, 3pm

London, ENGLAND - Sunday, September 23, 2018: Everton's Richarlison de Andrade during the FA Premier League match between Arsenal FC and Everton FC at the Emirates Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

This looks like a game that could be a lot of fun.

Leicester and Everton will both believe they are well-equipped to win the ‘Non Top-Six’ Premier League title this season, but they also look flawed at times.

Neither are exactly preventing goals from going in, but they also have quality in the attacking third that can hurt anyone.

Prediction: Leicester 2-2 Everton

 

Tottenham vs. Cardiff – Saturday, 3pm

ROCHDALE, ENGLAND - Sunday, February 18, 2018: Tottenham Hotspur's Lucas Moura during the FA Cup 5th Round match between Rochdale AFC and Tottenham Hotspur FC at Spotland Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Cardiff are threatening to be one of the worst teams to have graced the Premier League, with Neil Warnock’s men picking up just two points from their opening seven matches.

You cannot see them coming close to getting a result at Wembley on Saturday, with Tottenham possessing too much quality going forward, despite injuries to certain key men.

Harry Kane is back among the goals; this is the kind of afternoon where he will fancy himself to bag at least a brace.

Prediction: Tottenham 3-0 Cardiff

 

Watford vs. Bournemouth – Saturday, 3pm

Watford manager Javi Gracia during the Premier League match at Wembley Stadium. London. (Nick Potts/PA Wire/PA Images)

Everybody seems to be waiting for Watford‘s inevitable slide down the table, but they are still chipping away at this point, sitting sixth currently.

The same applies to their weekend opponents in many ways, with Bournemouth‘s 2-1 win over Palace on Monday keeping them one place below the Hornets.

This is a game that is also impossible to predict: it could be an easy victory either way, a narrow win, a 0-0 draw or a 3-3 epic.

Prediction: Watford 2-1 Bournemouth

 

Man United vs. Newcastle – Saturday, 5:30pm – BT Sport 1

Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez during the Premier League match at Anfield, Liverpool. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday March 3, 2018. See PA story SOCCER Liverpool. Photo credit should read: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: EDITORIAL USE ONLY No use with unauthorised audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or "live" services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications

Imagine Rafa Benitez getting Jose Mourinho the sack—just let that sink in!

That is entirely possibly on Saturday evening, with a Newcastle United win at Old Trafford surely the final nail in Mourinho’s coffin.

Unfortunately, the Magpies are also in dire straits at the minute, looking like strong relegation contenders, so you wouldn’t bank on them even getting a point.

United are a mess, though, with Mourinho clearly losing the dressing room, so anything feels possible right now with Liverpool’s greatest rivals.

Prediction: Man United 2-1 Newcastle

 

Fulham vs. Arsenal – Sunday, 12pm – BT Sport 1

A general view of a Craven Cottage corner flag (Mark Kerton/PA Wire/PA Images)

A triple-header of Sunday action starts with Arsenal making the short trip to Fulham, with the Gunners looking rejuvenated under Unai Emery.

They have been on a relatively easy run, in truth, but it does feel as though they have more grit and cohesion than in the final years of Arsene Wenger’s reign.

They are comfortable favourites at Craven Cottage this weekend, with the west Londoners struggling since returning to the top flight, sitting one place above the drop zone.

Prediction: Fulham 1-3 Arsenal

 

Southampton vs. Chelsea – Sunday, 2:15pm – Sky Sports Main Event

Southampton's Danny Ings during the Premier League match at St Mary's, Southampton (Andrew Matthews/PA Wire/PA Images)

Chelsea‘s performance against Liverpool last Saturday was impressive, in a game that was a joy to watch throughout, in terms of quality.

Maurizio Sarri’s side have shown that they are likely to be title challengers this season and they should have too much for Southampton.

Eden Hazard is the most in-form player in the country, the midfield looks superb and their brand of football is more aesthetically-pleasing than at most points during the Roman Abramovich era.

Saints will be relying on the goals of Danny Ings—do your permanent club a massive favour, please!

Prediction: Southampton 0-2 Chelsea

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