This weekend’s Premier League action sees the reverse legs of Boxing Day’s action.
Highlights include Brighton vs Chelsea, Burnley vs Manchester United and Manchester City vs Newcastle.
Brighton & Hove Albion vs Chelsea (12:30pm)
Both teams have shown poor form since meeting at Stamford Bridge a month ago.
Brighton haven’t won their three league games whilst Chelsea are yet to win in 2018, with their last win coming at home to Stoke on 30th December.
Since winning their first clash back in 1933, the Seagulls haven’t beaten Chelsea in last eight meetings home/away.
There has only been five league meetings between these teams and the Blues have won in Brighton on their two previous trips.
Both wins came by one goal margins (1-2 in September 1983 & 0-1 in March 1989), so expect a tough battle here.
Prediction wise, I can see this being tight because Chelsea have had four consecutive draws in all competitions.
They are also missing Alvaro Morata and Pedro, after the pair got red carded in Wednesday’s FA Cup replay.
With this being an early kick off, Chelsea having needed penalties in midweek and losing two key forwards, I can see Brighton producing a surprise here.
Prediction: Brighton & Hove Albion 1-0 Chelsea
Jake predicts: Brighton & Hove Albion 0-2 Chelsea
Result: Brighton & Hove Albion 0-4 Chelsea
Arsenal vs Crystal Palace
Arsenal won 3-2 at Selhurst Park a few weeks ago but are currently winless since then.
Crystal Palace meanwhile are unbeaten in their last three league games.
Although the Eagles haven’t won here in 24 years, I am expecting them to come here and try and repeat what they did to Manchester City on New Year Eve.
Arsenal are currently involved in off pitch drama surrounding Aleix Sanchez’s future, but that doesn’t excuse their poor performances of late.
Prediction wise, you would have to naturally say Arsenal but they have a midweek cup clash to think about.
Palace currently have Wilfried Zaha and Bakary Sako in form but their injury list is a concern.
As much as I feel that the Eagles could win here, I am going to go for a draw.
Prediction: Arsenal 1-1 Crystal Palace
Jake predicts: Arsenal 2-0 Crystal Palace
Result: Arsenal 4-1 Crystal Palace
Burnley vs Manchester United
Burnley will be hoping to get their form back on track as they welcome Manchester United to Turf Moor.
The Clarets have lost four of their last six in all competitions and two of last three at home.
Manchester United meanwhile have drawn and won three apiece from their last six in all competitions.
United has ruled this fixture although there is a pattern to this fixture since 2014-15.
The first clash has finished as a draw before the Red Devils won the second clash of season.
Therefore, I am going to predict an away win here with ninth clean sheet in ten visits.
Prediction: Burnley 0-1 Manchester United
Jake predicts: Burnley 1-2 Manchester United
Result: Burnley 0-1 Manchester United
Everton vs West Bromwich Albion
The meeting at Hawthorns finished 0-0 so expect some decent entertainment here.
Everton however have won just two of their last five home clashes with West Brom, drawing twice and losing once.
The Toffees however have improved their frontline with the signings of Cenk Tosun and Theo Walcott since then.
They however are winless so far this calendar year whilst the Baggies got their first win under Alan Pardew last weekend.
Although Everton will be favourites at home, I fancy West Brom to push on now with another win.
Prediction: Everton 0-1 WBA
Jake predicts: Everton 2-0 WBA
Result: Everton 1-1 WBA
Leicester vs Watford
Victory will send Leicester seventh and a step closer towards Arsenal and a potential Europa League spot.
Watford on the other hand, seem to be on a downwards spiral with just eight points from last 15 league games.
That dramatic fall from an potential Europa League spot in mid October, has left the Hornets just six points above the drop.
They did however beat Leicester at home last month.
Prediction wise, if Riyad Mahrez start then I expect a Leicester win because he has scored in last four against Watford.
Prediction: Leicester 2-0 Watford
Jake predicts: Leicester 2-0 Watford
Result: Leicester 2-0 Watford
Stoke vs Huddersfield
New Stoke manager, Paul Lambert will want a positive result to kick start his reign at the BET365 Stadium.
Four of the last five games at Stoke in this fixture has seen both teams score with the Potters collecting five points from those games.
I personally can see goals coming here because Stoke have the third worst goal difference in any of Europe’s top five leagues.
Their -27 goal difference leaves them ahead of Benevento on -30 in Serie A, and Las Palmas of La Liga, who have a goal difference of -32.
Huddersfield meanwhile have the third worst goal difference in the Premier League alone.
Lambert himself has suffered defeat at the hands of the Terriers in Sky Bet Championship.
When in charge of Blackburn Rovers, he lost 2-0 in April 2016, before his Wolverhampton Wanderers of last season lost 1-0 to them at Molineux.
Away form however has been Huddersfield’s Achilles heel this season, winning just twice on the road.
Although another draw is easy to predict, I fancy Huddersfield to use Stoke’s fragility at back to maximum effect.
Prediction: Stoke 0-2 Huddersfield Town
Jake predicts: Stoke 1-1 Huddersfield Town
Result: Stoke 2-0 Huddersfield Town
West Ham vs Bournemouth
Since their first Premier League meeting in August 2015, this fixture has produced 23 goals.
That is more than several top six clashes in that period, making this a tasty clash especially after the 3-3 draw last month.
In fact from ten meetings in all competitions, only TWO matches haven’t had both teams score. Both of those matches came at the Hammers’ ground.
Since that epic draw, West Ham are unbeaten in all competitions whilst Bournemouth are unbeaten in four of last five.
Both teams had midweek FA Cup replays so expect possibly less goals than usual due to squad rotation.
Nevertheless, this should be another exciting match but with a slightly duller draw to mark Eddie Howe’s 100th top flight game as a manager.
Prediction: West Ham 1-1 Bournemouth
Jake predicts: West Ham 1-1 Bournemouth
Result: West Ham 1-1 Bournemouth
Manchester City vs Newcastle (5:30pm)
After a shock defeat at Liverpool to end their 22 match unbeaten run, Pep Guardiola will hope that his City side can bounce straight back.
Newcastle meanwhile have off pitch worries with Amanda Staveley’s proposed takeover now reportedly off.
On pitch, they sit just one win above the drop zone with five points since losing to Man City on 27th December.
Focusing directly on this fixture, Man City have won their last eight home league games by a 29-5 scoreline, with the last draw at Etihad coming in November 2006.
Since then, the Magpies only win at the Citizens came in the League Cup 2014-15 season when they won 2-0.
That makes this prediction one sided really.
Prediction: Manchester City 3-0 Newcastle United
Jake predicts: Manchester City 2-0 Newcastle United
Result: Manchester City 3-1 Newcastle United
Here at Sport Grill, me and Jake Self are going head to head predicting games.
Here is how things stand after the previous round of games along with the rules.
Correct score – 3 points
Correct result – 1 point
Incorrect result – 0 points