Mark Young believes Jose Mourinho, Arsene Wenger and Brendan Rodgers will be under serious pressure after this weekend’s fixtures, but what does football writer James Montague reckon?
Crystal Palace 2-0 West Brom
Yohan Cabaye’s penalty and a superb defensive display saw Palace edge newly-promoted Watford, and Crystal Palace will need to work their socks off against West Brom this week as Tony Pulis returns to Selhurst Park; where things have been on the up since the Welshman left on the eve of last season.
The Baggies boss saw his side go two goals up at home to Everton on Monday night, only to see the lead obliterated in the last 20 minutes.
And I think West Brom will be on the end of another defeat this Saturday as the Eagles look to pile on the misery for their former manager.
James Montague’s Prediction: Crystal Palace 0-1 West Brom
Manchester City 3-0 Newcastle
The Magpies were minutes from beating champions Chelsea last week but ran out of legs and had to settle for a point. Unfortunately for Steve McClaren and his side, they now face a wounded City, who are desperate for a win after two Premier League defeats on the bounce.
The significant difference here could be that playmaker David Silva made his return in Europe during the week and will give Manuel Pellegrini’s men a much-needed boost.
With their key man back and Wednesday’s last-minute win giving City a European high for once, it should be a stroll for the Citizens on Saturday.
James Montague’s Prediction: Manchester City 4-1 Newcastle
Chelsea 1-1 Southampton
It was another struggle for Chelsea in midweek, who can’t seem to give a decent performance at the minute, and I reckon they will have to slog for anything at home to Southampton.
John Terry, Nemanja Matic and Eden Hazard all sat out of Tuesday’s defeat at Porto, with Loic Remy and Radamel Falcao staying at home.
Two wins so far is not good enough for the defending champions and, worryingly, last season’s warriors, including Branislav Ivanovic, are turning out poor displays. Yacine Brahimi gave the Serbian a torrid time and he can expect more of the same from Dusan Tadic and Sadio Mane in Saturday’s late kick-off.
The visitors seem to finally be getting back on track and Ronald Koeman will be confident his team can get something from the beleaguered Blues. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them dropping points once again.
James Montague’s Prediction: Chelsea 1-0 Southampton
Everton 2-0 Liverpool
The first Merseyside derby of the season takes place on Sunday and how Liverpool fans must wish they still had Steven Gerrard’s leadership for the game at Goodison.
After the Reds legend moved to Los Angeles, they seem to have lost their way and could only muster a 1-1 draw at home to Sion in the Europa League. It’s led to the club being dogged by persistent rumours that Jurgen Klopp is waiting in the wings to replace under-fire Brendan Rodgers.
Despite the return of Daniel Sturridge, I expect Romelu Lukaku to bully Liverpool’s defence – because they just can’t cope with a player of that stature – and increase the pressure on Rodgers.
James Montague’s Prediction: Everton 1-2 Liverpool
Arsenal 1-2 Manchester United
Manchester United have only lost once in their last seven games against Arsenal and I believe that record will still be intact after the sides meet on Sunday.
The Gunners need to come out fighting after two European defeats in a row but this United side will not give Arsene Wenger’s men the room they had in last week’s 5-2 win at Leicester. Arsenal’s task will be even harder with doubts over defender Laurent Koscielny but Petr Cech is expected to be back in goal.
Theo Walcott has been scoring goals and Alexis Sanchez has netted an impressive four goals in two games, but it is the defence that is the worry for the hosts.
If United are able to play in behind to Anthony Martial, Memphis Depay and the on-fire Juan Mata, it could be a long afternoon for Wenger’s men.
James Montague’s Prediction: Arsenal 1-2 Manchester United
Follow Mark on Twitter at @markyoung1988