Good evening and welcome to the week 10 of Dief’s Premier League matchweek preview. Last week was a low scoring one but nonetheless exciting and certainly shook up the table, so let’s get right to it.
Starting with the biggest match, Manchester United hung on to a 1-1 draw against perfect Liverpool to give them their first dropped points of the season. Liverpool still lead Manchester City by 6 points in the table. City got back to winning ways after a comfortable 2-0 win against Crystal Palace to keep the pressure on Jurgen Klopp’s side. Tottenham’s PL crisis continues after they could only muster a 1-1 draw against winless Watford… Spurs need to pick up their form fast as they already trail Liverpool by 13 points. The other side of North London did not do any better as Arsenal fell 0-1 to the hands of Sheffield United which has brought on the first real “Emery out” criticism. Chelsea get the edge over Newcastle with a 1-0 win to snatch the 4th spot over the Gunners in what has been very improved form from Frank Lampard’s men. In the bottom half of the table, Everton and Aston Villa both secured victory to steer them away from the relegation zone while Wolves and Southampton played to a 1-1 draw. With that, I give you my matchweek 10 preview.
LIVERPOOL VS TOTTENHAM (Anfield)
Back to back weeks Liverpool face off against a “top 6” side and will look for an improved performance after last week’s setback against United. Tottenham have been in full crisis mode in the league, suffering their worst form since Mauricio Pochettino took over as manager. Tottenham recently came off a MUCH needed 5-0 win against Serbian side SK Crvena Zvezda in the Champions League and greatly need this confidence to bring with them to Anfield. Liverpool are still going strongly in all competitions and their rotation players impressed in a 4-1 win over Genk in the Champions League. Overall, it will be a much tighter match than recent form will suggest. I predict 2-1 Liverpool
ARSENAL VS CRYSTAL PALACE (Emirates Stadium)
Not exactly a blockbuster of a match but it still holds some significant value. Since Arsenal’s loss to Sheffield last weekend, we have seen the first real wave of “Emery Out” critics and he will need to win over his supporters again with this fixture. Crystal Palace won last time these two faced off in a 3-2 win for the Eagles and a win again this week would see them leapfrog the Gunners to occupy the last European spot. Arsenal have not competed in the Champions League in 3 years now and they cannot afford to fall further adrift from the rest of the top 4 spots. Emery needs to get his lineup right, tactics in order, and go all out against former Arsenal target Wilfried Zaha and the Crystal Palace team. I say 2-0 Crystal Palace win
CHELSEA VS BURNLEY (Turf Moor)
Sitting in 8th place with 12 points, Burnley could potentially occupy the 5th spot after matchweek 10 with a win against Chelsea. They have flown under the radar but have been in the same type form that won them Europa League Qualification spot a few seasons ago. With home field advantage, Sean Dyche’s men will want to take full advantage and try to catch Chelsea on the counter-attack and rely on James Tarkowski and Ben Mee to keep out Chelsea’s diverse attack. Frank Lampard suggested Christian Pulisic is in “strong contention” to start after another assist of the bench for the only goal in their 1-0 over Ajax… with the form he is in I cannot wait to see him from the start against a team that will certainly need creativity to break apart. I say 3-0 Chelsea
Southampton vs Leicester City – 4-0 Leicester City
Manchester City vs Aston Villa – 3-0 Manchester City
Brighton vs Everton – 1-1 draw
Watford vs Bournemouth – 2-0 Bournemouth
West Ham United vs Sheffield United – 1-1 draw
Newcastle United vs Wolves – 2-1 Wolves
Norwich vs Manchester United – 1-0 Norwich
THINGS TO WATCH
- Leicester City – Can they keep the pressure on Liverpool
- Manchester United – Can they build the momentum after drawing to Liverpool
- Christian Pulisic – Will he start? (yes, he will be a “thing to watch” every week) (and yes he will start)
- Watford – Can they get a damn win?
That’s all I’ve got, sending you down to the field now with Arlo White and Lee Dixon, see you at halftime…
Written by: Andrew Diefenderfer (@diefdorf)