Gameweek 9 Predictions
Everton 2-1 West Ham
Aston Villa 2-0 Brighton
Bournemouth 3-1 Norwich
Chelsea 4-1 Newcastle
Leicester 2-1 Burnley
Tottenham 4-0 Watford
Wolves 2-0 Southampton
Crystal Palace 2-3 Manchester City
Manchester United 0-2 Liverpool
Sheffield Utd 1-2 Arsenal
Everton and West Ham open up the weekend’s fixtures, with Marco Silva in a must-win situation, after a poor start. The Everton Manager leads the “Next Manager to go” market at 4/5 odds, ahead of United’s Ole Solskjaer who is available at 3/1. This weekend’s could certainly lead to a managerial dismissal if results go a certain way.
Out of all the Manager’s under pressure this weekend, Pochettino’s Spurs seemingly have the simplest task, which is to beat bottom of the table Watford on their patch, and I’m expecting a strong bounce-back from them in this spot. I also like the look of Chelsea to pick up their second home win of the season against Newcastle, while Leicester should bounce back from a tight loss to Liverpool by seeing off Burnley. Bournemouth should be too strong at home against a Norwich team who’s form has significantly dipped.
Game of the Week: Manchester United vs Liverpool
This weekend’s game of the week focuses on the Sunday afternoon clash between England’s two most successful teams, as Manchester United host Liverpool at Old Trafford. Unfortunately for United, these are two teams going in different directions, with Liverpool 8 points clear at the top and Manchester United lingering in the bottom. Liverpool come into this game as only the 2nd team in EPL history to be odds on favourites to win at Old Trafford, with Manchester City being the first last April. This is certainly a sign of the times for Manchester United and indicative of their fall from grace.
Liverpool are odds-on favourites for good reason, and are just one win away from equalling the all-time record of 18 consecutive victories in the English top flight. Jurgen Klopp’s troops have built up a substantial 8 point lead in the title race and haven’t lost a league game since the start of January. No matter which way you look at it, it’s going to be a very tall order for Manchester United to get anything from this match, and one way to look at it, would be the combined XI. While obviously a subjective matter and open to debate, nobody could seriously argue that Manchester United warrant having any more than 3 players in the line-up, especially given the injuries they have coming into this game.
Manchester United have lost 6 of their last 13 league matches and look completely devoid of confidence right now. The fact they’re suffering from such an injury crisis only makes these odds for a Liverpool win look even better value. I expect Manchester United to replicate last year’s approach- where they secured a 0-0 draw at home- and keep things tight. However, I eventually expect Liverpool’s extra quality to be difference, as they inevitably break-through and continue their winning run.