Could there be a couple of little upsets in the Premier League this weekend? Mark Young believes so, as a deflated Manchester City face Southampton, Leicester travel to the Theatre of Dreams and Tottenham try to replicate last season’s dramatic home win over Chelsea. Former Premier League footballer Stephen Hunt also gives his input this week…
Bournemouth 0-3 Everton
Bournemouth are struggling, and it could get sticky when the Toffees come to town on Saturday.
Everton have scored 11 goals in three games in November, with Romelu Lukaku scoring in all three games and Ross Barkley in sparkling form. Gerard Deulofeu is also looking good for the first time this season, as he has taken his chance during his spell in the first team, keeping Steven Naismith and Kevin Mirallas out of the side.
Bournemouth managed to earn a credible draw at out-of-form Swansea City last weekend but have struggled up to that point; the Cherries lost to Newcastle in a game they should have won, not to mention the previous home game defeat to Tottenham by four goals in a 5-1 demolition job.
It could be another very comfortable away win for Bournemouth’s visitors as the Toffees look set to pick up three more points to finish an outstanding November.
Stephen Hunt’s Prediction: Bournemouth 1-1 Everton
Manchester City 1-1 Southampton
It has been a poor week for Manchester City, and the downturn in form may well continue as the Saints come marching in to Manchester.
A tough trip to Turin to face Juventus on Wednesday night ended in narrow defeat for the Sky Blues, but one positive from the loss is that Sergio Aguero got some more minutes under his belt.
More of a worry than the mid-week Champions League defeat, however, is the defeat at the hands of Liverpool last weekend. The Reds played City off the pitch and won 4-1, but were impressively 3-0 up at half time.
Southampton will also be disappointed with last weekend’s defeat at home to Stoke, and will also be missing Graziano Pelle from their squad as he is suspended. Shane Long is available to return, and City have proven so far this season that they can’t deal with pace in attack. With Long and Sadio Mane in attack, it could be a long afternoon for City’s defence and could once again see the side drop some points.
Stephen Hunt’s Prediction: Manchester City 3-1 Southampton
Leicester City 0-2 Manchester United
Saturday could be the day that Jamie Vardy scores in his eleventh consecutive match and breaks Ruud van Nistelrooy’s goal-scoring record. He has already equalled the Manchester United legend’s haul, but will break it if he scores against the Dutchman’s former club, who boast the stingiest defence in the Premier League.
United conceded their first goal in the league since losing 3-0 at Arsenal at Watford last weekend, but could tighten up once again. They were poor going forward against PSV in midweek, but never looked like conceding, and that could be the route to victory this time out.
Vardy and Riyad Mahrez have been outstanding in attack for the Foxes this season, but with United set to sit deep and keep things tight, they could have a long evening in front of goal.
Leicester are capable, but United should have enough to hold out, and although they are not really convincing at all so far, Louis van Gaal’s men could be top of the league by 8pm on Saturday.
Stephen Hunt’s Prediction: Leicester City 1-1 Manchester United
Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 Chelsea
Last season’s clash between Tottenham and Chelsea was notable for not only the 5-3 victory for the home side, but for the emergence of a new striking star.
Harry Kane was incredible that day, and has made himself one of England’s leading lights in the Premier League in the last 12 months. It has been a superb year for the England striker and things have kept getting better for him and Spurs, unlike London rivals Chelsea.
Chelsea have gone from Premier League champions to bottom-half strugglers, but have shown signs of a recovery with back-to-back victories over Norwich City and Maccabi Tel Aviv.
However, that may well not be enough for Jose Mourinho and the Blues as they still look ropey at the back in recent matches, whilst Spurs haven’t lost since the opening day defeat at Old Trafford.
This could continue on Sunday lunchtime as Spurs go from strength to strength, and Chelsea struggle for answers.
Stephen Hunt’s Prediction: Tottenham Hotspur 1-3 Chelsea
Liverpool 3-0 Swansea City
Jurgen Klopp is the toast of the Kop once again after last week’s 4-1 victory at the Etihad Stadium against Manchester City. Liverpool’s pressing, aggression, and superior finishing tied City in knots, despite them being the champions elect only a few weeks ago.
Roberto Firmino was outstanding, and Emre Can’s outrageous back heeled pass to Coutinho to set up Firmino was incredible.
It’s worth noting, though, that Liverpool have struggled at Anfield this season, as documented by their defeat at the hands of Crystal Palace a couple of weeks ago.
Meanwhile, Garry Monk’s fortunes have taken a downturn since a super start to the season for Swansea, with certain media outlets suggesting that his job is in trouble.
Swansea could be in trouble again, as Klopp and his Reds continue to travel the upward curve.
Follow Mark on Twitter @markyoung1988
Stephen Hunt’s Prediction: Liverpool 3-0 Swansea City
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