The Unofficial Arsenal Blog
It’s that time of the week again when I attempt to put my reputation on the line and make my Premier League predictions for this week. After having a great week with my predictions the week before the international break, I was back to my worst last week with only one correct scoreline, three correct outcomes and six incorrect outcomes. It means I slipped back from second to fifth in my predictions league but I hope to improve this week and regain my rightful position at the top of the league.
Tottenham v Everton
The Spuds looked like they were about to be slaughtered on Wednesday night as they trailed Inter Milan 3-0 at half time and were down to 10 men. However, Gareth Bale had other ideas and his second half hat trick almost rescued a point for them. They will have Van Der Vaart available for this game too and if they can play well they can create a lot of problems for Everton.
Everton will be looking to exploit the fact that The Spuds had such an energy sapping match on Wednesday night and they are in good form themselves at the moment. They are fairly solid at the back and it’s only a lack of goals scored that has them in the bottom half of the table so far. I think it’s going to be a very tight game with a draw as the most likely outcome.
Birmingham v Blackpool
Birmingahm are just outside the relegation places at the moment and they need to get some points on the board very quickly. This looks like an ideal opportunity on paper as they are up against newly promoted Blackpool who would seem to have a much inferior team.
Blackpool have had a great start to their Premier League campaign and besides heavy defeats at Arsenal and Chelsea they have had great results away from home. They have won at Wigan, Newcastle and Wigan and with their open attacking style of football they are a breath of fresh air. I’m predicting a Blackpool win in this game but I think it’s more in hope than expectation. Hopefully Charlie Adam will bag my fantasy team a few more points into the deal as well.
Chelsea v Wolves
Chelsea have dispatched the teams from the lower reaches of the league with ease so far this season and this game is another one of those games that they should win with ease. Drogba may well be back from illness and hopefully he will bag my fantasy team a host of points as well with Malouda chipping in with a few as well. I think we can expect Chelsea to start very strongly as they seem to do in these games and put the result beyond doubt before half time.
Wolves had an opportunity to climb out of the relegation zone last week but they only drew at home to bottom club West Ham and they will need an awful lot of hard work and luck not to get thumped in this game. I can’t see anything other than a resounding Chelsea victory with all of their rivals having hard games this weekend.
Sunderland v Aston Villa
Sunderland have been great at home to the top teams but their ability to gain points off the teams in the lower half of the table isn’t quite so good. They could only manage a draw at Blackburn last week despite the fact that Blackburn had only 10 players for half of the game and they never raised their game to the level that they showed against those bigger teams.
Aston Villa managed a creditable 0-0 draw at home to Chelsea last week and they will see this as an opportunity to make up some ground on the top four who all have tough games this week with the exception of Chelsea. However, I think that Villa are a big enough club for the Sunderland players to raise their game and come out with a narrow victory.
West Brom v Fulham
West Brom have performed admirably since gaining promotion and their 2-2 draw away to Manure last week was a great result for them. They will be buoyant and they will look to play their attractive brand of football against a very resilient Fulham team. It may not be quite so easy for them in a game like this at home where they are probably perceived as favourites though.
Fulham lost their unbeaten record to a very bad refereeing decision last week but they still have only one win under their belts. They need to start turning some of their draws into wins or they will continue to slide down the table and they will see this game as an ideal opportunity to do just that. Their problem would seem to be a lack of goals and with Zamora injured Clint Dempsey is probably the most likely man to remedy that. I can see this being a very close game with neither team coming out on top.
Wigan v Bolton
Wigan had a terrible start to the season but they have turned things around very nicely since then. If N’Zogbia can score a few more goals like he did last week he will be a very valuable asset for them and for any fantasy football players as well.
Bolton’s attempts to change their playing style have been well documented but they still retain that edge to them that they learned from Big Fat Sam. It’s a hard game to call but I have a funny feeling Bolton will get a rare away victory.
West Ham v Newcastle
West Ham remain rooted to the bottom of the table and they need to start winning their home games if they are going to change that. This is a game that is certainly winnable for them and if they can approach it with some confidence they have every chance of doing so.
Newcastle seem to be going nowhere but slowly down the table and despite having some good players they seem unable to score enough goals. From what I’ve seen they are making the chances and when those chances go in they can look very good as they did against Villa. Football is all about confidence though and Newcastle’s is fading fast so I think West Ham might just edge this game.
Stoke v Man Utd
Stoke RFC must have thought that they had a great chance to get one over on Manure but with Rooney now having backtracked and signed for another five years they might not find it so easy. I have no doubt that they will play their usual brand of unattractive football but even though I don’t like them I will of course be rooting for them.
Maybe the fact that Rooney has committed his future to Manure will be just what they needed to boost their flagging league form but I’m not so sure. Their squad isn’t as good as it was and a few of their players are very close to retirement so it will take a lot of money to keep Rooney happy now that he is staying. I have a sneaky feeling that Stoke RFC can score a couple against Manure’s leaky defence and if Nani isn’t on form they could well get a victory.
Liverpool v Blackburn
Liverpool are in the middle of a crisis and there is no denying it. They may have new owners but who knows if there will be money to buy much needed players in January. They can’t seem to score goals and they seem devoid of confidence or spirit as well. All of those factors add up to a very hard time for their supporters and I can’t see it stopping too soon.
Blackburn did well to get a draw against Sunderland last week after Samba was sent off and they will think they have a chance against a Liverpool team that are in disarray. They don’t travel too well which is a pity for them but I still think they can get a point and keep Liverpool in the relegation zone.
Man City v Arsenal
Man City sit proudly in second place in the league and they will be looking to show everybody that they are the number one challengers to Chelsea for the title. In Tevez and Silva they have two players who can hurt any team and they have a very solid base behind those flair players too. The big question for City is where they look to take Arsenal on or they try to keep things tight and hit Arsenal on the break. Mancini is a conservative manager in the big games and I don’t think he will vary from that in this game..
Arsenal can welcome Cesc back into their team and he is the best player in his position in the world in my opinion. Unfortunately for them Wilshere is missing and his replacement will be very important for Arsenal. If they can play their fast moving football we can expect to see de Jong putting himself about to try to break it up but City won’t find it easy. As an Arsenal fan I have to say I think they will win but I genuinely think that they are more than good enough to beat City.
That’s it for my predictions but feel free to tell me where you think I have gone wrong or possibly even right.
Until next Week,
Note: If any of you want to share your views/opinions on the club from N5 (read: Arsenal!), leave Us a comment at the bottom. We’ll get back right away & be glad to give you a chance. Keep Gunning..