This weekend’s Premier League gets underway with a blockbuster Saturday as Manchester City and Liverpool are amongst 16 clubs in action.
Bournemouth vs Liverpool (12:30pm)Embed from Getty Images
Bournemouth will fancy their chances here after rediscovering their magical touch in midweek to end a four match losing streak, as Liverpool look to go top ahead of the afternoon’s games.
In recent weeks, neither side have played well with Liverpool managing to grind out wins unlike Bournemouth, who have just lacked their clinical finish and energy when not attacking down the flanks.
This therefore is probably going to be a close game with both teams scoring but it will be just about an away win.
Prediction: Bournemouth 1-2 Liverpool
Jake predicts: Bournemouth 1-2 Liverpool
Result: Bournemouth 0-4 Liverpool
Arsenal vs Huddersfield Town
Arsenal are still unbeatable without a defeat in last 20 across all competitions, whilst Huddersfield have found their goal scoring boots.
I can see Arsenal winning this rather comfortably if can continue their attacking momentum but haven’t kept a domestic clean sheet since end of September. Huddersfield should therefore nick one although won’t leave with any points.
Prediction: Arsenal 3-1 Huddersfield Town
Jake predicts: Arsenal 2-0 Huddersfield Town
Result: Arsenal 1-0 Huddersfield Town
Burnley vs Brighton & Hove AlbionEmbed from Getty Images
Burnley put up a good fight against Liverpool on Wednesday but if Brighton continue their recent improvement then an away win could be possible.
The Seagulls however have taken just seven points from their eight away league games, which is quite dire for a team who are strong at home yet can’t do the business on their travels.
Taking that issue into account, if Burnley can take heart from their midweek performance and continue to make progress then I can see a draw here.
Prediction: Burnley 1-1 Brighton & Hove Albion
Jake predicts: Burnley 1-3 Brighton & Hove Albion
Result: Burnley 1-0 Brighton & Hove Albion
Cardiff City vs Southampton
For Ralph Hasenhuttl, he needs to get Southampton back to their attacking best quickly and there’s no better place to start than Cardiff.
Although the Bluebirds’ away form has been terrible, they have done a decent job at home with three wins from last four outings at the Cardiff City Stadium with last two wins coming against sides above them in the table.
Southampton meanwhile have shown signs of what they can do in the past week with decent performances against Manchester United and Spurs, as defence remains an issue.
I therefore am hoping for a draw but Cardiff are on a home roll at the minute, so should edge this one.
Prediction: Cardiff City 2-1 Southampton
Jake predicts: Cardiff City 1-1 Southampton
Result: Cardiff City 1-0 Southampton
Manchester United vs FulhamEmbed from Getty Images
After a consecutive pairs of 2-2 draws after conceding the first goals, Manchester United really need to start on front foot here after four consecutive league draws.
If they don’t then the longer it stays 0–0, the more the belief within Fulham will grow because they have been much more solid since Claudio Ranieri arrived.
Personally, if United fail to make it 22 wins from 24 home games against Fulham in all competitions then Jose Mourinho’s time is probably nearly up but they should just nick this like they did against Young Boys.
Prediction: Manchester United 1-0 Fulham
Jake predicts: Manchester United 2-0 Fulham
Result: Manchester United 4-1 Fulham
West Ham United vs Crystal Palace
West Ham are starting to find their stride now whereas Crystal Palace have been inconsistent lately with one point from last five away games.
Palace in fact need to buck up their ideas after an atrocious showing at Brighton on Tuesday night, because if not then I can see another heavy defeat here as the Hammers are flying.
Prediction: West Ham United 3-0 Crystal Palace
Jake predicts: West Ham United 2-2 Crystal Palace
Result: West Ham United 3-2 Crystal Palace
Chelsea vs Manchester City (5:30pm)Embed from Getty Images
Lose here then its probably game over for Chelsea’s title hopes.
Having lost two of their last three, the Blues need to reignite their title bid quickly and three points here would be a massive confidence booster, although tactics will be key because N’Golo Kante is clearly struggling outside of his usual deep midfield role and Manchester City will look to exploit that fragility.
Moving onto the Citizens, Tuesday’s win was pretty much a walk in the park despite Ben Foster’s impressive performance denying them more goals before Abdoulaye Doucoure’s late pull back for Watford.
Throw in the fact that several first team regulars were rested then I can see a fresh City side potentially doing some serious damage if Chelsea don’t tighten up and play Kante in his proper position.
Prediction: Chelsea 0-2 Manchester City
Jake predicts: Chelsea 1-2 Manchester City
Result: Chelsea 2-0 Manchester City
Leicester City vs Tottenham Hotspur (7:45pm)
Tottenham recovered well from last weekend’s derby defeat at Arsenal by thumping Southampton, although Leicester will be a tougher test.
For me, the Foxes could spring chances out of nowhere and especially from long balls which might cause Spurs some problems if not careful as they seem to employing a lot of balls over top in recent games.
Tottenham however will have the quality to cope and should get a nice comfortable lead, before making subs ahead of a must win Champions League match in Barcelona on Tuesday.
Prediction: Leicester City 0-2 Tottenham Hotspur
Jake predicts: Leicester City 2-3 Tottenham Hotspur
Result: Leicester City 0-2 Tottenham Hotspur
With the new season underway, so is Prediction Wars between me and Boro Rants writer, Jake Self.
Rules remain the same as last season and goes as follows alongside latest standings;
Correct score – 3 points
Correct result – 1 point
Incorrect result – 0 points