Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Premier League Preview – Matchday 24

Deke Hardman in Editorial, English Premier League 28 Jan 2019

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Champions Manchester City take on Newcastle United at St James’s Park on Tuesday evening knowing that victory will see them move to within a point of leaders Liverpool.

January has so far been a very good month for Pep Guardiola’s side, who have won all seven of their fixtures in all competitions by an aggregate score of 30-1. Seriously.

Rafael Benitez’s side’s outlook looks pretty different, with them crashing out of the FA Cup to Watford on Saturday while their win over Cardiff City last time out in the league was their first triumph in five.

Victory for Arsenal over Cardiff will see them move level on points with fourth place Chelsea, while anything other than three points will leave the door wide open for Manchester United, who go into this round of games behind the Gunners on goal difference.


Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has won each of his eight games in charge of the Red Devils, who are now priced at just 11/8 to finish the season in the Champions League qualification places.

Bottom-of-the-table Huddersfield Town really need to start picking up points and will fancy their chances against an Everton side who were dumped out of the FA Cup by Championship strugglers Millwall at the weekend while Fulham, who are just three points ahead of the Terriers welcome Brighton and Hove Albion to Craven Cottage.


Wolverhampton Wanderers, who scored a late equaliser at Shrewsbury Town to keep themselves in the cup take on a West Ham United side who were on the wrong end of the biggest shock of the fourth round after losing to AFC Wimbledon, who themselves are at the wrong end of League One.

The two sides are just two places and a point apart, in favour of Wolves who sit in eighth place just one point behind Watford.

The Hornets travel to a Tottenham Hotspur side who have been knocked out of not just one but two cups since the last round of Premier League fixtures.

Javi Gracia’s side are unbeaten in their last six games in all competitions and took all three points when they hosted Spurs back in August, so few will bet against them in their trip to Wembley, especially considering their opponents mounting injury concerns.


Southampton and Crystal Palace are level on points and just three above the drop zone ahead of their meeting at St Mary’s Stadium while Bournemouth, who are one of six sides realistically chasing seventh place, host Chelsea.

Finally, league leaders Liverpool will be hoping to pile more misery on Leicester City manager Claude Puel, as they welcome the Foxes to Anfield.

The Frenchman has overseen four defeats in his last five games, and remains the favourite to be the next manager in the division to leave his post.


Deke Hardman

Freelance football writer with a love of the game that goes back to the mid nineties when both his beloved Nottingham Forest and England had genuine hope of acheiving some level of success. A regular contributor to both and, Deke also dabbles in music journalism with his heart and head still stuck in the latter years of the twentieth century.



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