Here are Dan’s Predictions for this week. There are not many big games this week, but Arsenal’s home fixture against a weakening Man City side may be the game that cements our new confident streak, or could it send us further into despair, especially as Spurs and United play before us on Sunday and could pull further ahead? Anyway here are Dan’s Predictions..
Liverpool 3-0 Watford
A lot has been made of their fixture pile up, but in reality Liverpool were always going to field their kids in the League Cup, meaning for their first team it’s the Saturday- Wednesday schedule they are used to most weeks. This will just be the case of ‘get some early goals’ allowing them to take their foot off the gas.
I think Nigel Pearson will keep Watford up. People forget the job he did at Leicester; he was sacked for reasons off the pitch. He’s proven he knows how to organise and get players to scrap. His press conferences are always a delight as well. But this is his toughest start possible here though..
Burnley 1-2 Newcastle
A lot of people were quick to write off Steve Bruce, so it’s only correct we point out when he’s doing well. The Toon would have bitten your hand off to be 11th in December and this is the most confident they have looked all season. Even more impressive is they are doing so without their hard-working strikers scoring. Just like under Rafa Benítez everyone has to be playing well for the team to succeed. If the Toon have the right ambition, they can win at Burnley who have lost their last 4 and are not as stable as usual.
Chelsea 2-0 Cherries
Chelsea showed last weekend that they can still have defensive blips, meaning they can be caught in the race for the top 4. The advantage they have is they are allowed to spend money again in January.
If they are smart, they will buy from a position of strength, solidifying their position. For example, a Zaha? Bear in mind this will coincide with our owners saying we can only loan talent. If you had to pick a home game at the moment, you would pick the Cherries. They are dropping like a stone and need that one result to change their confidence. It won’t happen here though.
Leicester 1-0 Norwich
You keep thinking this is the week where the Foxes slip up, yet didn’t we say that all those years ago under Claudio Ranieri? Norwich will park the bus but there is too much firepower from the home side to see them hang on.
Sheffield United 0-2 Aston Villa
As well as United have done so far, with that comes expectations which can be hard to live up to. Suddenly fans will be showing up to Brammall Lane thinking they are favourites when in reality this was a Championship Fixture last year. I think this might be like the Newcastle game a couple of weeks ago. Villa have dangerous players in the final third.
Saints 2-0 West Ham
I fear this might be Pellegrini’s final game as West Ham boss, especially if they lose in the manner I think, namely they won’t battle. The Saints have recent experience of winning these crucial relegation scraps against Norwich and Watford which will help them here.
Man United 1-1 Everton
The wins over Spurs and Man City show the advantages of sticking with a club legend despite his lack of experience. United now have players who care about the shirt, understand the ethos of the club and its values. That’s why I want an Arsenal man to replace Unai Emery full time.
With youngsters though it also means a lack of consistency. In the fickle world of football, Duncan Ferguson will probably be on Everton’s shortlist if he gets a result here. The worry for Toffees fans is that there seems to be a lack of identity in who they want, sound familiar ?
Wolves 0-1 Spurs
I see this being a classic Jose performance. Soak up lots of pressure, Wolves not taking all their chances. Yet Spurs to nick it with a moment of quality, maybe from the much-improved Deli Ali?
Arsenal 2-2 Man City
Don’t get me wrong I’m not getting carried away with one win at West Ham. The reality is it was a really poor game between two teams with zero confidence. Yet self-belief can change with one result. I’m more looking at this from Man City’s point of view. The champions could be 17 points behind Liverpool by kick off, incredible pressure. If the likes of Newcastle and Man United can get at their defence even when they are dominating possession, then why can’t we? That’s as long as Freddie is positive of course…
What do you think of Dan’s Predictions this week?