Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Premier League predictions

Face to face on Sunday


Arsenal v Stoke
The manager’s have tried to play this one down but there will be some ill feeling at the Emirates today. It will be the first time Stoke’s Ryan Shawcross has taken the field against Arsenal since his tackle that so horribly broke young Aaron Ramsey’s leg. Ramsey won’t be there as he trying to regain some match fitness on loan at Nottingham Forest, but the rest of the Arsenal players will remember that day very well.

Hopefully everyone will remain professional and we’ll get a decent game of football between teams with contrasting styles. One of these sides has had more yellow cards, more red cards and committed more fouls than the other one this season. That side is Arsenal. Maybe Arsene Wenger should take note of that fact before he inevitably speaks out about how rough Stoke are!

Back to the football, an easy win for Arsenal.

Soccernews prediction: 3-0

Birmingham v Newcastle
The home side are down in sixteenth place whereas Newcastle are flying high in eighth. It isn’t quite how it sounds though as only four points separate the sides.

Birmingham can’t find any consistency and they are struggling to find the net. A 1-0 defeat at Wolves last time out summed up their current frailties.

Who knows what to expect from Newcastle? They were inconsistent under Chris Hughton and that is hardly likely to change now their beloved manager has gone and been replaced by that ‘big name experienced Premier League manager’ Alan Pardew. They started well for him against Liverpool but the jury is still out.

I fancy a narrow win for Alex McLeish and his men.

Soccernews prediction: 1-0

Blackburn v West Ham
Managerless Blackburn go head to head with soon to be managerless West Ham. Of course, soon to be managerless West Ham are soon to be managed by the former manager of managerless Blackburn. Confused?

Anyway, back to the football. On paper this is an easy win for the home side as West Ham are rock bottom and yet to win away from home this season. The complications in this game, however, are great. Blackburn will be in a state of shock from the sacking of Sam Allardyce and West Ham know that defeat could lead to the sacking of Avram Grant. Much will depend on how the players react to those circumstances.

I’m going to go with the form book.

Soccernews prediction: 2-1

Liverpool v Fulham
Neither of these sides are free scoring this season and neither of them are doing as well as they would have hoped. The two managers seem to have settled for less than they or the fans would have expected before the season started. Roy Hodgson seems to think that a top half finish would be success and Mark Hughes seems to think that survival is all they can aim for. Surely neither of those things is good enough for these two teams.

Liverpool’s home form is OK and they have been beaten just once at Anfield. Fulham’s away form has remained poor with no wins, although they have drawn five of their eight games. They are still hard to beat and I don’t think Liverpool will manage it today.

Soccernews prediction: 0-0

Sunderland v Bolton
Nobody expected this game to be a battle between seventh and sixth. You have to hand it to Steve Bruce and Owen Coyle. Unlike the previous game where the two teams are under performing, these are two teams who are doing much better than they should.

Sunderland are unbeaten at home but have drawn half their games. Bolton have also drawn half of their away games. That leads to only one conclusion.

Soccernews prediction: 1-1

Wigan v Aston Villa
I keep saying what a bad side Wigan are but draws against Stoke and Everton have shown that they do at least have something about them. Having said that, they have gone five games without a win and remain in the relegation zone.

Aston Villa were potential European challengers a few months ago but last week’s win against West Brom did little more than ease growing fears of a relegation battle. There is no doubt that they are too good to get involved in the scrap at the bottom and a win here will see them starting to look up rather than down.

Soccernews prediction: 1-2


Blackpool v Tottenham
Ian Holloway’s men have made a fantastic start to life in the top flight and prior to this game are just five points behind high flying Tottenham with a game in hand. They play an attractive style of attacking football that is great to watch but does leave them open to fast counter attacking football.

Unfortunately for Blackpool, with the likes of Gareth Bale and Aaron Lennon, Tottenham are ideally suited to play against their style.

It should be a good game to watch but I can see Tottenham having plenty of chances and taking a few of them.

Soccernews prediction: 1-3

Chelsea v Man United
With all due respect to Manchester City, Arsenal and the rest, this is the game between the only two teams that I think have a realistic chance of winning the title. Chelsea are on a rotten run, but there is no doubt they are one of the best two teams in the league. Manchester United are not performing as they can, but they are unbeaten and that says it all.

I don’t expect this game to be a classic as both teams will be cagey and may well cancel each other out. I can see good arguments for a Chelsea win and likewise with United. Therefore, I’ll have to go for the draw.

Soccernews prediction: 1-1

West Brom v Wolverhampton
A midlands derby that will be played with great passion in front of a raucous crowd. West Brom are comfortable in mid table and Wolves are in the drop zone but coming off a crucial win.

Although a derby tends to ignore the form book, you can’t ignore the fact that Wolves have picked up just one point on their travels from eight games. It is hard to see them adding to that tally in this one.

Soccernews prediction: 2-0


Man City v Everton
Whether Carlos Tevez features in this game or not remains to be seen, but City showed in their win at West Ham and draw at Juventus, that they can do OK without him.

City’s form is good and they have gone seven league games without defeat and sit joint second in the league, just two points behind the leaders. Despite the negative publicity surrounding the club, they are doing pretty well!

Everton are just two points clear of the drop zone prior to the weekend’s games and they lurch from one disappointment to another. Each time they look as though they may have turned the corner, they slip back again. A draw at Chelsea two weeks ago was promising, a draw at home to Wigan last week wasn’t.

Soccernews prediction: 2-0


Graham Fisher



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