It is EPL time again and so far the season has been full of surprises. Chelsea have made their worst start to a campaign in 19-years, while Leicester have made their best ever start to an EPL campaign and are on their longest unbeaten run – 10 games – since 1976. Can the Foxes make it 11 games, will Manchester City continue their perfect start to the season, and will Arsene Wenger finally beat Jose Mourinho in a competitive game?
We will have to wait and see, but in the meantime you can take look at our predictions as we take you through all ten of Week 6’s EPL games.
|Chelsea v Arsenal||1-1|
|Aston Villa v West Brom||1-2|
|Bournemouth v Sunderland||2-0|
|Newcastle v Watford||1-1|
|Stoke v Leicester||2-2|
|Swansea v Everton||2-1|
|Man City v West Ham||3-0|
|Tottenham v Crystal Palace||1-1|
|Liverpool v Norwich||2-0|
|Southampton v Man Utd||1-1|
A correct result (picking a win, draw or defeat) is worth ONE point. Getting the exact score correct earns THREE points.
Chelsea v Arsenal
Chelsea lost back to back games in the EPL for the first time since 2006 last week and have now officially made their worst start to a campaign since 1986, when they only had three points after five games.
Arsenal comfortably beat Stoke 2-0 at home last week to move into the top four of the EPL. However, they suffered a shock result midweek again Dynamo Zagreb in the Champions League and will want to bounce back with a good performance against the Champions.
Chelsea are unbeaten in their last seven games against Arsenal, though they did lose to the Gunners in last month’s Community Shield. The Blues have look fragile at the back so far this season and that is why I expect them to go back to basic and be far from adventurous against Arsenal, who I also expect will settle for a draw.
Aston Villa v West Brom
Villa let go of a 2-0 lead to lose away to Leicester and look like they will struggle again this season. Tim Sherwood was sullen and aloof with the press after the game, and appeared happy to lay the blame squarely on his players.
West Brom drew 0-0 at home to Southampton and are now unbeaten in their last two. Saido Berahino made an appearance from the bench despite stating he would never play for the club again after his proposed move to Spurs fell through, and I expect he will start against Villa.
Villa have only lost once at home in their last 17 league appearances against their neighbors, but I don’t think things are quite right in the Villa dressing room at the moment and I expect the Baggies to win this derby.
Bournemouth v Sunderland
Bournemouth lost away to Norwich last week and will be hoping to bounce back and get the result their recent performances have merited.
The Cherries play a refreshing brand of football and will create chances against any team, but they will also gift chances to their opponents. However, they have a quality striker in Callum Wilson who has already shown he can score at this level, so they will be hoping that the results go their way more often than not.
Sunderland lost at home to Tottenham last week and look like they will once again struggle this season. The Black Cats have strikers that have scored goals in the past, but they look toothless at the moment and lacking any creativity.
Newcastle v Watford
Newcastle, like Sunderland, are also without a win in the EPL and look like they could struggle this season. The Magpies made a terrific start to their campaign last season, but were then in free-fall from January onwards, and only just escaped the drop. They have brought in a new manager in Steve McClaren, but he already looks like a man under pressure, as his players do not look like they can score goals.
Watford have made a good start to their EPL Campaign winning one and drawing three of their opening five games. The Hornets got a terrific result against Swansea last week, winning 1-0, and look like a well organized unit that are hard to break down.
Newcastle desperately need a win and will be expected by their fans to deliver against newly promoted Watford. However, I think the Hornets will make life difficult for the Magpies and I expect this game to end in a stalemate.
Stoke v Leicester
Stoke are also yet to win a game in the EPL this season and lost easily away to Arsenal last week. A lot more was expected from Stoke this season, especially as they were active in the transfer market, but things haven’t quite clicked for them yet.
Meanwhile, Leicester were expected to struggle after sacking manager Nigel Pearson, but have been this seasons surprise package. New manager Claudio Ranieri has changed the Foxes formation and approach to the game, and the results have been spectacular with Leicester the joint-top scorers in the EPL so far.
Swansea v Everton
Swansea’s fine start to the season ended last week with a loss away to Watford. The Swans never really got going last weekend, but everyone has a bad day at the office and I am sure they will put that result behind them and give Everton a tough game.
Everton got a great result last week beating Chelsea 3-1 at home. The Toffees perhaps didn’t get the praise they deserved, but they played really well and look like they could challenge for a spot in the top four this season.
Anyone who visits Swansea knows they are going to be in for a tough game and Everton will expect nothing different tomorrow. I think the game will be tight and will be surprised if there is a winner.
Man City v West Ham
Manchester City continued their 100% start to the season with a win away to Crystal Palace. However, the Sky Blues were made to sweat with Nigerian teenage Kelechi Iheanacho scoring right at the death. However, it was not all good news for City with club captain Vincent Kompnay and striker Sergio Aguero both picking up injuries, though Aguero has recovered and is expected to start.
Meanwhile, east Londoners West Ham continued their great start to the season with a 2-0 home win over Newcastle. Summer signing Dimitri Payet scored both goals, bringing his tally to three for the season and has now been involved in 11 goals (four goals, seven assists) in his last 13 appearances for West Ham and Marseille combined.
City suffered their first defeat of the season midweek in the Champions League against Juventus, but I would be very surprised if West Ham left Manchester with anything other than a loss.
Tottenham v Crystal Palace
Tottenham got their first win of the season last week away to Sunderland thanks to a Ryan Mason goal. The north Londoners have really struggled for goals this season, scoring only four in five games, but summer signing Son Heung-min did score a brace mid-week in Europe, so Spurs will be hoping he can transfer that over to the EPL.
Crystal Palace put up a good fight against Man City last week losing a goal in the very last minute. The Eagles have established themselves as a solid EPL team and will give any team in the League a tough game.
I expect Tottenham to dominate, but I think their lack of ability to score goals will once against cost them.
Liverpool v Norwich
Liverpool lost 3-1 away to Manchester United to lose back-to-back games after starting their campaign well. The biggest worry for Liverpool fans was their side’s performance, as they looked like they lacked ambition and endeavor going forward.
Norwich beat Bournmouth 3-1 last week to make their best start to an EPL campaign since they earned 10-points in their opening five games in 1993. Much of their success has been down to Wes Hoolahan, who has provided four assists – more than any other player in the EPL so far this season.
Liverpool were really lacking ideas against Manchester United last week, but they have Philippe Coutinho available again after suspension, and I expect him to make the difference against Norwich.
Southampton v Man Utd
Southampton have turned things around after making a poor start to the season, and are now unbeaten in their last three games. The Saints have shored up their defense and have also started putting the ball into the net at the other end.
Manchester United bounced back from their defeat to Swansea with a 3-1 win over Liverpool. The Red Devils were only marginally better than their rival and really look to be lacking creativity and cutting edge in the final third. New striker Anthony Martial scored a fantastic goal on his debut, but his midweek performance showed he still lacks the experience to lead the United line on his own.
Southampton beat United at Old Trafford last season, so definitely won’t be afraid of the Red Devils on their home patch. However, I think both teams are still trying to find their rhythm and that’s why I’ll go for a draw.