The third Premier League weekend is the time when two groups of teams will start shaping – one with the teams that will fight for Top 4 and another with those involved in the relegation battler. Here are my projections for this Premier League match week.
Bournemouth vs Man City
Bournemouth have been nothing but disappointing last weekend and their manager Eddie Howe expressed publicly his frustration after the 0:2 home defeat against Watford. The Cherries bounced back during the midweek, winning their EFL league fixture against Birmingham City by 2:1. Now they welcome Man City and after the Sky Blues drew at home against Everton, it is hard to believe that they would drop more points by missing to win on their visit to Bournemouth. It looks to me that City will score at least two goals 1:2.
Crystal Palace vs Swansea
This home fixture is an excellent chance for the Eagles to win three points. It will give their new manager Frank De Boer a confidence boost. Palace played a very intelligent football at Anfield last weekend, despite that they had to sit deep and defend. De Boer has improved their ball passing and unlike the last season, now the Eagles would be nice to watch. I tip them to win this one by 1:0.
Watford vs Brighton
Last week one of the COL authors Ben Darvill told me that Marco Silva is a very good manager and he expects Watford to win on their away visit against Bournemouth. I didn’t listen to him because I thought that the Hornets had too many injuries and would loose at Dean Court. My projection was a Bournemouth win and it was very wrong. The Hornets won and I should give Ben credit for his pick. In fact, I’d ask him to do the “Winning Picks” for the next Premier League weekend. As far as for this Watford home fixture, I think they will win it by 2:1.
Huddersfield vs Southampton
I’m impressed by the Terriers. They have won all 3 games they played this season – two in the Premier League and one in the EFL Cup against Rotherham. As it always happens with a newly promoted sides who surpass the expectations, the hard times come, sooner or later. I think that Southampton know how to play and win points on their away fixtures. The Saints enjoyed a good start of the season and they’d draw this game. It looks to me that 1:1 is a very likely result.
Newcastle vs West Ham
It is going to be a though season for the Magpies. Rafa Benitez is a world-class manager, but it looks that Newcastle United don’t have the players they need to achieve anything, different than fighting for a Premier League survival. Considering the quality of the other teams and their moves on the transfer market, it will be very, very hard for Newcastle to keep their place in the English top-flight.
West Ham haven’t enjoyed a good start of the season, but they are a bit unfortunate as they have 3 away fixtures in a row. The Hammers are a good team and if Slaven Bilic is a bit lucky, they would win a point or even three at St James’s park. I don’t know what to think about this game as both teams look unpredictable at the moment. The Hammers are the better side, but Newcastle will fight for their lives. I’d go for 1:1 here.
Man United vs Leicester City
United had two easy fixtures and they won them convincingly. Now they welcome a very good side at home – the 2015/2016 Premier League champions Leicester City. The Foxes know how to defend and how to score goals on counter attack. This game would be a little bit harder for the Jose Mourinho’s men to win, but I think that the Red Devils will get all the points. It looks likes a 2:1 win to me.
Chelsea vs Everton
I’m looking forward to watching this game. Those are two very strong sides – both tactically and technically. Everton’s squad has improved lot this summer. With the arrival of Gylfi Sigurdsson, they’ve got a very good playmaker who has made an instant impact on their game. It is going to be very hard for Chelsea to win this home fixture. Manchester City failed to do so.
Everton look like a team that is very hard to beat at the moment. The Toffees are in the Europa League and playing on Thursdays will not help them to win points in the Premier League. This means that they must grab as much points as they can at the early stages of the season. Chelsea showed a great character last week against Spurs and deserved to win the game. However, they are still not the team their fans like watching. I’ll go for 1:1 here.
West Brom vs Stoke City
This is a game I’m watching despite that it is on TV. The quality of the football played buy West Bromwich and Stoke City has been depreciating the Premier League for quite some time. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against any of those clubs, it is just that like any other passionate football fan I want to watch a quality games. Having said that, I’d also mention that Stoke City now have 5 players who won the Champions League with their previous teams. Stoke have got Jese Rodriguez from PSG and this is an amazing signing for them. I’m tipping The Potters to win on their trip to The Hawthorns by 1:2.
Liverpool vs Arsenal
We can see how important Alexis Sanchez is for the Gunners. Without him, it was really hard for them to win their first Premier League home game against Leicester City. Now Sanchez is available for selection and will play at Anfield.
Liverpool had a good week and won 2 important games. However, Reds cannot afford to get carried away with after their win against Hoffenheim. The German side have scored 2 goals and could have scored more.
Liverpool look very good offensively, but they still need to improve their defence. We would expect Arsenal to score one or two goals at Anfield. The question is how many goals will score Liverpool. If Arsene Wenger’s team blocks Liverpool midfielders, Reds would suffer. Arsenal play with five in the midfield, while Liverpool have only 3 players operating in this zone. It is going to be a tactical game. I think that Liverpool have a better chance to win it, however. It looks like a 2:1 to me.
Tottenham vs Burnley
It is a must win game for Spurs, who were a bit unlucky against Chelsea last weekend. Burnley have won on their first visit to London, but I don’t see them winning this time. This game looks to me like a 3:1 win for Tottenham.