EVERTON vs MANCHESTER UNITED (ESPN LIVE @ 1625IST)
Everton’s poor form continued last weekend, losing 3-1 to Arsenal at Emirates Stadium, but according to manager David Moyes, there were positive signs and he believes the results will come, but with just 8 points from 8 matches, Everton are languishing in 16th position on the table. Home form for Everton is LLLD
Manchester United did as expected last weekend, defeating WBA 4-0 at Old Trafford to move into 5th position on the Barclays Premier League Table and according to manager Sir Alex Ferguson, the players kept a fantastic rhythm and tempo against WBA, and they worked hard for each other. After a sluggish start to the season, Man U have gone up a gear and with Rooney and Ronaldo shredding holes through the opposition, they are back on target, whereas Everton are struggling in the bottom half of the table. Based on recent form, it’s difficult to go past Man Utd. Away form for Man Utd is WLDW.
Everton lost 3 successive home to Manchester United and Everton failed to beat Manchester United in the last 6 meetings. So my prediction is away win for Manchester United.
SUNDERLAND vs NEWCASTLE UNITED (Star Sports LIVE @ 1710)
Sunderland left Craven Cottage with a nil-all draw last weekend - they should have left with the three points, after striking the woodwork in four different incidents, but according to manager Roy Keane: "that’s why top strikers are paid so much money to put the ball in the net."
Sunderland home form LLWD. Sunderland are without win in the last 3 matches.
A ten-man Newcastle held on for a gutsy 2-2 draw with Manchester City at St James Park - Referee Rob Styles showed a red card to Habib Beye after he tackled Robiniho on the edge of the box, in what seemed a harsh decision. Leaning towards the Black Cats.
Newcastle away form DLLD. Now Newcastle are without win in the last 6 matches played.
Sunderland failed to beat Newcastle in Stadium of Light in the last 5 meetings and in both away and home games Sunderland failed to beat them in the last 9 meetings. So my prediction is another away win for Newcastle. My prediction is away win for Newcastle.
MANCHESTER CITY vs STOKE CITY
Manchester City had every opportunity to defeat a 10-man Newcastle at St James Park last week, but they were unable convert when it counted - they might be cashed up, but Man City have a long way to go if they are to challenge the "big-four". Man City's home form WLWL.
Stoke City defeated Tottenham 2-1 at Britannia Stadium last weekend - goals to Danny Higginbotham and Rory Delap clinched the much needed win for Stoke, who now have 7 points form 8 matches. Manchester City to win. Stokes away form LLDL.
Now Man City are without win in the last 3 games. My prediction is home win for Man City.
PORTSMOUTH vs FULHAM (Star Sports LIVE @ 1925)
So close - yet so far! Portsmouth striker Jermain Defeo missed a "give-me" against Villa as the match fizzled out into a nil-all draw. Veteran defender Sol Campbell turned back the clock with a vintage display and midfielder Sean Davis was sent off for two bookable offences with 10 minutes remaining. Portsmouth home form LWWW.
Fulham got out of jail last weekend when they held the Black Cats to a nil-all draw at Craven Cottage - the draw snapped a run of four straight defeated, mind you, both teams had their chances to break the deadlock, with the woodwork constantly getting in the way. Portsmouth to win. Fulham away form LLL.
Fulham are without win in the last 4 games and Portsmouth are not beaten in home in the last 3 home games. Portsmouth failed to beat Fulham in the last 2 games in Fratton Park. My prediction is home win for Portsmouth.
WEST BROMWICH vs HULL CITY
West Bromwich discovered that there is a huge gap between themselves and the top flight teams after their 4-0 loss to Manchester United last weekend - according to Baggies boss Tony Mowbay: "we are coming up against teams who can spend millions on strikers - which is where it matters". WBA home form LWLW.
The "Hull City" juggernaut rolled on last weekend with a 1-0 win over West Ham - a Michael Turner header on the 51st minute clinched the win, and with 17 points from 8 matches, Hull continue to rub shoulders with a English Premier League heavyweights in the title race - now, common sense tells us they’ll probably fall away at the business end of the season, but their efforts to date are nothing less than remarkable. I’m looking forward to this contest - based on exposed form, you’d be entitled to back Hull City. Hull away form DWWW.
Hull were unbeaten in the last 5 games they played. My prediction is away win for Hull City.
WIGAN ATHLETIC vs ASTON VILLA (ESPN Delay @ 2155)
Wigan put up a fight against Liverpool last weekend, eventually losing 3-2 at JJB Stadium - Wigan took the lead twice, only to see Liverpool come from behind - a solid effort, especially when you consider they were down to 10 men when Valencia was sent off with 16 minutes remaining on the clock. Wigans home form LDWL
Aston Villa were lucky to escape with a nil-all draw against Portsmouth last weekend - simply put, Portsmouth restricted their access to goal and according to manager Martin O’Neill, they could not force the ball over the the line." In an interesting pre-match move, O’Neill made his first team change in seven weeks, with Luke Young and Nicky Shorey making way for James Milner and Carlos Cuellar. This is shaping up as an even contest - leaning towards Wigan with the home ground advantage. Villa's away form LWWL.
Wigan have mix fortunes in home against Villa by winning one, drawing one and lost one. In the last 6 encounters Wigan lost one game and winning 3 games. My prediction is draw.
TOTTENHAM HOTSPURS vs BOLTON WANDERERS (ESPN LIVE @ 1925)
With just 2 points from 8 matches after the sixth defeat of the season (2-1 to Stoke), Tottenham transformation from a top flight team to Premier League "has-been’s" is all but complete! Simply put, if they don’t start winning, they’ll find themselves in the Coco Cola Championship next season - shades of Leeds United! Bolton held Blackburn to a nil-all draw in last weekend’s local derby. Spurs home win LLDL.
Bolton had their share of the ball and they had their opportunities, but the lack a quality striker who can finish off. This is a must-win game for Tottenham - another home loss would further dent their confidence as they struggle to lift themselves off the bottom of the the table - as for Bolton, they also need a win to make a move in right direction. Leaning towards the draw. Bolton's away form LLLW. Overall Bolton lost only 2 games to Spurs in the last 9 encounters. My prediction is away win for Bolton.
BLACKBURN ROVERS vs MIDDLESBROUGH (Star Sports Live @2155)
Blackburn shared the spoils in their local derby against Bolton with a nil-all draw last weekend - Blackburn wasted a number of chances, with Carlos Villanueva hitting the wood work and Jason Roberts sending a close range header wide of the post. Rovers home form DLWL.
Middlesbrough were comprehensively defeated 5-0 by Chelsea last weekend - in an embarrassing performance, Boro were appeared flat-footed in defence and they made a number of fundamental mistakes. Can Middlesbrough rebound from last weekend’s 5-0 thrashing? - I doubt it. Blackburn to win. M'brough away form LLLW.
M'brough failed to beat Rovers in the last matches in Ewood Park and in the last 6 encounters Blackburn havent lost to Middlesbrough. My prediction is home win for Blackburn.