Premier League Preview and Prediction: Norwich City vs Liverpool

Competition: Premier League – Norwich City vs. Liverpool

Venue: Carrow Road – Saturday, January 23 – 12:45 GMT (07:45 ET)

Match Odds: Norwich City 3/1 – Draw 5/2 – Liverpool 13/5

Match Preview

Norwich City welcome Liverpool to Carrow Road in Saturday’s early Premier League kick off, in which three points are vital for both teams.

Norwich return back to East Anglia after back-to-back defeats to Stoke City and Bournemouth. They conceded six goals in those two fixtures and need to shore up defensively now.

Manager, Alex Neil has been busy in the last few days with the signings of Scotland international Steven Naismith, Swiss centre-back Timm Klose and Ivan Pinto from Dynamo Zagreb joining to try and help maintain the Canaries’ Premier League status.

As we said in this week’s Podcast, Steven Naismith’s signing could prove valuable for the club with his goals and experience. Five more wins this season could keep them up, and with nine fixtures to play at home, Norwich will hope they can rely on home comforts to see them through.

Embed from Getty Images

Liverpool have been very inconsistent this term and are sitting in ninth place in the Premier League, with no win in three league matches. The latest being the 1-0 defeat at Anfield to Manchester United last Sunday.

A win over Exeter City in the FA Cup third round replay on Wednesday might have put some confidence back into the Reds, and Klopp ensured several first-team players were rested for that tie.

The German manager has plenty of injury worries that don’t seem to want to go away, with several first-team players out with injuries for extended periods of time. But one positive is that Jon Flanagan has returned after 18 months out.

Embed from Getty Images

The reverse fixture saw Norwich take a point at Anfield with a 1-1 draw back in September and the Canaries will be desperate to go one better this time around.

Team News

Norwich have no fresh injury concerns ahead of the game but Gary O’Neil will continue to serve his suspension after his red card against Stoke City.

Liverpool have a whole host of injuries as Divock Origi (knee), Philippe Coutinho (hamstring), Dejan Lovren (hamstring), Martin Skrtel (hamstring), Danny Ings (ACL), Joe Gomez (ACL) and Daniel Sturridge (hip) are all still sidelined

Key Points

Norwich City’s last five: L/W/W/L/L

Liverpool’s last five: W/W/L/D/L

Key Stat: Liverpool last lost at Carrow Road in May 1993.

Key Player: Wes Hoolahan – The Irish playmaker will want to add to his impressive tally of six assists for the season. With Steven Naismith expected to play some part, Norwich fans will be hoping they strike up a formidable partnership to propel them up the table.

Embed from Getty Images

Score Prediction

Norwich City 1-1 Liverpool – This one has draw written all over it. An impressive draw at Anfield for Norwich earlier in the season will give them belief. The Reds played in the week and Norwich have had that extra rest, so they will fancy their chances. But Liverpool will still be hard to beat. There might not be many goals but a score draw looks likely.

Advertisements

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Manchester United vs Arsenal

Competition: Premier League – Manchester United vs. Arsenal

Venue: Old Trafford – Sunday, May 17th – 16:00 BST (11:00 ET)

Match Odds: Man United 6/4 – Draw 23/10 – Arsenal 7/4

Match Preview

Manchester United entertain Arsenal on Sunday in a showdown fixture in the battle for third place. United are currently fourth on 68 points. Arsenal are two points ahead in third but have played a game less. If the Gunners win this one they cannot be caught by United and will therefore guarantee a top three finish.

United come into the game off the back of a 2-1 win away at Crystal Palace which ended their three game losing streak.

Louis Van Gaal’s men have all but secured Champions League football for next season but will do everything possible to avoid the burden of the qualifying rounds for finishing fourth, and a win against Arsenal would help them on their way to a top three finish.

Embed from Getty Images

Arsene Wenger has added importance to the tie and is hoping to ensure his side avoid the Champions League qualifiers early next season.

Arsenal come into this after suffering a shock defeat at home to Swansea City on Monday night which was their first loss in ten games.

The Gunners haven’t won at Old Trafford in the Premier League since 2006 and will be hoping to put an end to that run.

Embed from Getty Images

This game has the potential to be a classic and with so much at stake for both clubs it will be interesting to see how it all unfolds.

United fans will expect a result in their final home game of the campaign but Arsenal have already won there this season in the quarterfinals of the FA Cup, though the Red Devils did win the reverse league fixture at the Emirates by the same scoreline.

Team News

United have suffered a huge blow as captain, Wayne Rooney, is set to miss out. Louis Van Gaal’s side have the longest injury list in the league with the likes of Michael Carrick, Marcos Rojo, Phil Jones and Rafael all set to miss out. Robin Van Persie could be in line to start against his former club but is currently unwell so his situation will be monitored over the weekend.

Embed from Getty Images

Arsenal have three injury concerns ahead of this one as Danny Welbeck, Mathieu Debuchy and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are all ruled out. Wenger could be set to make a few changes after Monday’s performance against Swansea, but given that was a shock result he will not want to upset the balance of his side ahead of such a big game.

Key Points

Manchester United’s last five: W/L/L/L/W

Arsenal’s last five: W/W/D/W/L

Key Stat: It has been nine years since Wenger’s side won a league game at Old Trafford and he has a great chance to put that trend to bed this weekend.

Key Player: Alexis Sanchez – Arsenal’s goal-machine has the chance to stamp his mark on the Old Trafford faithful after a superb first season in England.

Embed from Getty Images

Score Prediction

Manchester United 2-2 Arsenal – A fixture which rarely fails to disappoint will live up to expectation this weekend. United’s injury woes will hamper their chances of winning and Wenger will not let his side blow their third spot easily. Expect goals but the shares may be spoiled with little to separate them.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Southampton vs Aston Villa

Competition: Premier League – Southampton vs. Aston Villa

Venue: St Mary’s Stadium – Saturday, May 16th – 12:45 BST (7:45 ET)

Match Odds: Southampton 4/5 – Draw 5/2 – Aston Villa 7/2

Match Preview

Aston Villa travel to St Mary’s knowing that a win against Southampton will guarantee top-flight football for another year.

The Saints are chasing their own ambitions however, as they close in on Europa League football. They are one point off Tottenham and will need a win to keep the pressure on Spurs going into the final weekend.

Southampton have been impressive this term despite their drop in form recently and have managed to only concede 12 goals at home in the Premier League, which is no mean feat.

Embed from Getty Images

However, they haven’t registered a win in their last four and have conceded at least two in all of those matches, so Villa will feel confident ahead of this one.

Southampton’s home record in the Premier League: P18 – W10 – D4 – L4

Aston Villa have turned a corner under Tim Sherwood as they look more confident and hungry under the former Spurs boss, achieving a 55% win ratio in the Premier League alone.

When you add this to the matter of them being in the FA Cup final, few will argue what a great job Sherwood has done in such a short space of time as the Villains looked doomed at one point.

Embed from Getty Images

Much of the recent form has been down to the scoring streak that Christian Benteke has put together, netting ten times in the league since Sherwood came in. A sensational return.

Aston Villa’s away record in the Premier League: P18 – W5 – D2 – L11

This being said, Villa have only managed to find the net 12 times away from home this season and will need to be at their best to beat the Saints on Saturday.

Team News

Southampton will be without Dusan Tadic, Jay Rodriguez, Morgan Schneiderlin, Emmanuel Mayuka and Fraser Forster. James Ward-Prowse is back in contention after serving a suspension. Kelvin Davis is expected to come in for Paulo Gazzaniga in goal.

Aston Villa will travel to Southampton without Chris Herd, Ciaran Clark and Nathan Baker as all three are ruled out. Ashley Westwood should continue to keep Carlos Sanchez out of the side and Gabby Agbonlahor could be preferred to Charles N’Zogbia in attack.

Key Points

Southampton’s last five: W/L/D/L/L

Aston Villa’s last five: D/W/L/W/W

Key Stat: Villa have only lost once away at Southampton since November 2000, a 4-1 loss in 2012.

Key Player: Christian Benteke – The Belgian hit-man has been sensational as of late he will be expected to torture Southampton’s defence in this one.

Embed from Getty Images

Score Prediction

Southampton 1-1 Aston Villa – With both teams needing a win, expect them to cancel each other out, as a draw looks the most likely result. A point for Villa should be enough to keep them out of any trouble on the last day, while Southampton will have all to play for should they avoid defeat themselves.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Manchester City vs QPR

Competition: Premier League – Manchester City vs. Queens Park Rangers

Venue: Etihad Stadium – Sunday, May 10th – 13:00 BST (08:30 ET)

Match Odds: Man City 2/9 – Draw 11/2 – QPR 10/1

Match Preview

Manchester City host QPR in the Sunday afternoon kickoff in a game that could be a make or break clash for the West London club as they are currently seven points off safety and will be relegated from the Premier League if they lose.

With Manchester City seemingly left with nothing to play for but Champions League security, it looks there will be a summer of change at last year’s champions.

Embed from Getty Images

City have the benefit of playing at home as they have won their last five at the Etihad and are strong favourites to make it six as they have the best attack in the league, with 71 goals scored this term.

Manchester City’s home record: P17 – W12 – D3 – L2

QPR have looked certain for the drop for much of the season, and boss Chris Ramsey’s efforts look all but lost as he has battled to keep a weak QPR side in the top flight for several weeks.

With the worst defense in the league, QPR have leaked an incredible 61 goals this term, and could be in trouble at City this weekend.

Embed from Getty Images

A long season for QPR could all be over come the end of the weekend, as they need three wins to even have a hope of staying up.

QPR’s away record: P17 – W2 – D1 – L14

Team News

Manchester City: Steven Jovetic, Vincent Kompany and Yaya Toure are all out. Samir Nasri and Jesus Navas are both doubts and aren’t expected to start. Fernando, Fernandinho and Frank Lampard are expected to make the midfield trio.

QPR: Alejandro Faurlin, Eduardo Vargas and Mauro Zarate are all out, Nedum Onuoha is suspended and Steven Caulker and Armand Traore are doubts. Charlie Austin and Bobby Zamora are expected to start up front.

Key Points

Manchester City’s last five: LLWWW

QPR’s last five: W/D/L/D/L

Key Stat: QPR haven’t won away to City in the Premier League since May 1995.

Key Player: Sergio Aguero – The star striker has been the shining light in a fading team and has kept them ticking over this term with 22 goals.

Embed from Getty Images

Score Prediction

Manchester City 3-1 QPR – The Citizens look far too strong for QPR and should win the game with relative ease to spell the end of the R’s survival chances as they prepare for next year in the Championship.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Crystal Palace vs Manchester United

CompetitionPremier League – Crystal Palace vs. Manchester United 

VenueSelhurst Park – Saturday, May 9 – 17:30 BST (12:30 ET)

Match OddsCrystal Palace 16/5 – Draw 5/2 – Manchester United 17/20

Match Preview

Crystal Palace host Manchester United on Saturday evening as the Premier League season is drawing to a close. Palace have the chance of making United’s chase for Champions League football come under pressure if they can take something from this tie.

Alan Pardew‘s side have hit a sticky patch after losing three on the bounce. They had been on a four game winning streak but have been bought back down to earth and look likely to finish mid-table.

Last weekends loss didn’t come as too much of a surprise as they couldn’t halt Chelsea’s bid to become champions but their performance was spirited and they made it very difficult for their London rivals.

Embed from Getty Images

Back at Selhurst Park it is a totally different type of game. Palace have made it difficult for sides to come away with all three points all season and have beaten some of the top sides in the league.

United won the reverse fixture and haven’t lost to Palace since 2011. Louis Van Gaal‘s side need to ensure they avoid defeat here with Liverpool chasing them down for the all important fourth place.

United come into the game off the back of last weekend’s loss at home to West Bromwich Albion. It was a difficult one for the Old Trafford faithful to swallow but things are looking up for next season despite the fact they have lost their last three on the bounce.

Embed from Getty Images

Van Gaal has already started the summer rejig of his squad with the signing of Memphis Depay and he must make sure they finish in the top four to ensure he can attract the biggest names for next season.

This should be an interesting tie packed with action and it could play a pivotal role into how the Premier League table ends up.

Team News

Crystal Palace have three injury concerns. Former Manchester United player Frazier Campbell, Marouane Chamakh and Jerome Thomas are sidelined. Pardew will be relying on his speedsters, Dwight Gayle and Yannick Bolasie, to provide and entertain as usual.

Embed from Getty Images

Manchester United’s injury woes continue as six could be set to miss out. Van Gaal is facing the prospect of playing this one five of his defenders absent. Marcos Rojo, Rafael, Luke Shaw, Chris Smalling and Jonny Evans and Michael Carrick are all unavailable.

Key Points

Crystal Palace’s last five: W/W/L/L/L

Manchester United’s last five: W/W/L/L/L

Key Stat: Defensive woes – Louis Van Gaal only has one fully fit defender ahead of this tie in the shape of Phil Jones and his side could be easily exposed given Palace’s attacking talent.

Key Player: Yannick Bolasie – The Congolese winger will be looking to continue to impress and finish his great season on a high.
Embed from Getty Images

Score Prediction

Crystal Palace 2-2 Manchester United – A real end-to-end affair with Palace to upset United and pile the pressure on the Red Devils in their final two games.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Hull vs Arsenal

Competition: Premier League – Hull City vs. Arsenal 

Venue: KC Stadium – Monday, May 4th – 20:00 BST (15:00 ET)

Match Odds: Hull 4/1 – Draw 11/4 – Arsenal 3/4

Match Preview

Hull City host Arsenal in this week’s Monday night fixture in a game which is of equal importance for both sides but for opposite reasons.

Hull sit just a point above the relegation zone following the weekend’s fixtures and will need to give themselves breathing space sooner rather than later as sides around them are picking up points.

Embed from Getty Images

Having won their last two matches without conceding a goal, Steve Bruce’s men will feel confident they can deliver some more points on Monday night against the Gunners.

Hull City’s home record in the Premier League: P16 – W5 – D4 – L7

Arsenal’s title dreams are over after Chelsea won the league on Sunday, but Arsene Wenger’s side will still need to maintain their current form as they look to secure an automatic Champions League place.

Arsenal haven’t lost a league game since early February, and run of nine games, and have won their last four on the road. They also have a place in the FA Cup final once again as they look to retain their trophy so there is lots to play for.

Embed from Getty Images

Arsenal will be overwhelming favourites to win here seeing as they are undefeated in their last nine meetings with Hull, winning eight of those.

The Tigers drew 2-2 in the reverse fixture back in October but lost at the Emirates in the FA Cup in January.

Arsenal’s away record in the Premier League: P17 – W9 – D3 – L5

Hull come into the game off the back of a 1-0 win against Liverpool last Tuesday and will be hoping to seal all three points in this one too.

Team News

Hull City: Andrew Robertson and Robert Snodgrass are both out. There will be late fitness tests for Mohamed Diame, Nikica Jelavic and Curtis Davies. But Steve Bruce looks set to name the same team for a third straight week.

Arsenal: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is out. Mathieu Debuchy, Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Flamini are all doubts. Danny Welbeck and Gabriel could come into the side.

Key Points

Hull’s last five: L/L/L/W/W

Arsenal’s last five: W/W/W/W/D

Key Stat: The last time Hull beat Arsenal at home was April 1915. Can they end a 100 year wait on Monday?

Key Player: Alexis Sanchez – The superstar winger has had a superb season so far and he might prove to be the difference once again.

Embed from Getty Images

Score Prediction

Hull City 0-3 Arsenal – The Gunners to prove too strong for Hull as they pick up another win to move five points clear of United in fourth. Hull need points but this one will be too much of a challenge and they’ll be looking to next weekend’s meeting with Burnley for points.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Chelsea vs Crystal Palace

Competition: Premier League – Chelsea vs. Crystal Palace

Venue: Stamford Bridge – Sunday, May 3rd – 13:30 BST (08:30 ET)

Match Odds: Chelsea 1/3 – Draw 4/1 – Crystal Palace 17/2

Match Preview

Chelsea host Crystal Palace on Sunday with the chance to secure their first Premier League title since 2010. Jose Mourinho’s men have been edging closer to the title with each passing week but have still come under criticism for their style of play.

They come into the game after a 3-1 away win at Leicester City on Wednesday. Their first-half performance in that tie was below par and with Leicester leading at the break it looked as if Chelsea would struggle in the second-half, though they went on to win and are now just one game away from the title.

Embed from Getty Images

Palace can take positives from the way in which Leicester unlocked the Chelsea defence but it will be surprising if the Blues don’t wrap up the championship this week.

The champions elect are unbeaten in 14 games and have looked like they have setup in a style to completely avoid defeat in recent weeks. However, a draw in this one is not what they will want and anything other than a win will be scrutinised.

Crystal Palace have been completely rejuvenated since Alan Pardew took over the side and are looking strong candidates for a mid-table finish.

Embed from Getty Images

Palace had won four on the bounce but have suffered back-to-back defeats which comes as a surprise with both of those games at home.

Pardew will have his players pumped as always and they will be hoping to spoil Chelsea’s day. Palace have a tough run-in and will be grateful they are not struggling in and around the relegation zone with just four weeks to go.

Team News

Chelsea look set to be without Diego Costa and Loic Remy for this game, though Oscar could return after missing out in midweek as a precaution following his heavy-hitting challenge with Arsenal’s keeper David Ospina. As we have seen this season Mourinho isn’t one for chopping and changing, so we could expect a very similar lineup to the one that played at Leicester.

Crystal Palace could be without Frazier Campbell and Marouane Chamakh who both face late fitness tests. Joel Ward and Jerome Thomas remain sidelined.

Key Points

Chelsea’s last five: W/W/W/D/W

Crystal Palace’s last five: W/W/W/L/L

Key Stat: Champions elect – Chelsea are just three points from the title and can wrap things up with a win this weekend.

Key Player: Eden Hazard – Even with Chelsea’s style being criticised the PFA Player of the Year continues to excite and he will be the focal point of Chelsea’s attacks as usual.

Embed from Getty Images

Score Prediction

Chelsea 2-1 Crystal Palace – Chelsea to secure the Premier League title against a Palace side who will not make things easy and frustrate Mourinho’s men as much as possible.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Everton vs Manchester United

Competition: Premier League – Everton vs. Manchester United

Venue: Goodison Park – Sunday, April 26th – 13:30 BST (08:30 ET)

Match Odds: Everton 12/5 – Draw 23/10 – Manchester United 23/20

Match Preview

Everton host Manchester United at Goodison Park on Sunday afternoon in a game which could see Louis Van Gaal’s side finish the weekend in second place in the Premier League if results go their way.

Roberto Martinez’s side have had a disappointing season and the distraction of the Europa League hasn’t helped them. Sitting 12th is not where he would have expected his side to be this late on in the season and it looks more than likely they will finish in the middle of the table.

Everton have put together a great run of form in their last five games, winning four a drawing one – form we are more used to seeing from the Toffees, but it has come a little too late in the season.

Embed from Getty Images

This weekend’s game is probably their toughest remaining fixture and if they can finish their final five games unbeaten it will fill the squad and the fans with confidence ahead of next year.

The reverse fixture saw United narrowly come out on top, winning 2-1 at Old Trafford, and we can expect another tough matchup in this one.

Louis Van Gaal’s side can consider themselves unlucky to have lost last weekend to the league leaders, Chelsea, after United had won six on the bounce prior to that game.

Manchester United have hit some impressive form of late and have shown their capabilities of climbing back into a more familiar league position, and look like they are going to be a force next season.

Embed from Getty Images

The Red Devils will be filled with confidence having all but secured Champions League football for the next campaign, barring a disaster, and they will be expecting to win this one.

Juan Mata and Marouane Fellaini have been in superb form of late and they will be looking to continue to impress, with the Belgian midfielder returning to his former side once again.

Wayne Rooney also returns to his boyhood club. The Manchester United captain has led by example this season and will be striving to net against Everton once again.

Team News 

Everton have five injury concerns as James McCarthy, Leon Osman, Darren Gibson, Bryan Oviedo and Tony Hibbert are set to miss out. Roberto Martinez will be hoping his Everton side can continue their good form and remind everyone what they are about. Romelu Lukaku will once again be under the spotlight, hoping to prove he can produce in the big games.

Manchester United’s injury woes continue as they have six key absentees. Adnan Januzaj, Rafael, Marcos Rojo, Phil Jones, Daley Blind and Michael Carrick are set to be sidelined. Van Gaal opted to start Radamel Falcao last weekend and he was unlucky not to score after hitting the post, so the Colombian could be in line for another start.

Key Points

Everton’s last five: W/W/W/D/W

Manchester United’s last five: W/W/W/W/L

Key Stat: Everton have won the last two meetings between the sides at Goodison Park.

Embed from Getty Images

Key Player: David de Gea – United’s last line of defence has been in incredible form this season and he can show once again why he is a nominee for the PFA Player of the Year award this weekend.

Score Prediction

Everton 1-3 Manchester United – United to get back to winning ways and prove to be too much for Everton despite their injury problems.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Newcastle vs Tottenham

Competition: Premier League – Newcastle United vs. Tottenham Hotspur

Venue: St James’ Park – Sunday, April 19 – 16:00 BST (11:00 ET)

Match Odds: Newcastle 21/10 – Draw 13/5 – Tottenham 5/4

Match Preview

Newcastle United welcome Tottenham Hotspur to St James’ Park on Sunday afternoon as both sides look to ensure their Premier League campaign’s don’t fizzle out to a disappointing conclusion.

John Carver has described the Newcastle managerial post as “the hardest job in football” following discontent from the fans after a run of five straight defeats has seen the Toon Army slip down to 14th place in the table.

Rumours of the Newcastle supporters planning to boycott the game against Tottenham in a protest against the way owner Mike Ashley runs the club has only intensified yet more negativity surrounding the club, making the job of the manager and players even more difficult.

Embed from Getty Images

The Magpies have only managed to score once in their last five games and twice in their last seven – Newcastle have picked up the joint fewest points (4) along with QPR out of any team in the last eight games.

Tottenham have endured a miserable few weeks themselves with just one win in their last four games (D1, L2) including a disappointing defeat at home to Aston Villa last weekend.

Mauricio Pochettino‘s side have been unusually flat in recent weeks and it could be a case of a long season catching up with them having played 51 games in this campaign, which is more than any other Premier League team.

Embed from Getty Images

Spurs are seven points behind fourth-placed Man City and if they are to maintain any faint hopes of qualifying for the Champions League, they absolutely have to win this game, otherwise it will be all but over for another year.

With that in mind, this is certainly a fixture that has the potential to feel like it’s just a formality as both Newcastle and Tottenham are almost at the stage of the season where there is nothing to play for.

But the Magpies need to step up their performances to guarantee their safety, while Spurs have to be ready to pounce on any potential slip-ups from the teams above them, making a positive result imperative for both sides.

Embed from Getty Images

Newcastle edged the reverse fixture in the Premier League at White Hart Lane with a 2-1 victory in October, although Tottenham gained revenge in the last meeting between the sides with an emphatic 4-0 win in the League Cup just before Christmas.

Team News

Newcastle will welcome skipper Fabricio Coloccini back into the team following his suspension, while Siem De Jong could make his first appearance since he suffered a collapsed lung back in August. The Magpies will still be without the suspended Moussa Sissoko and Papiss Cisse.

Tottenham have a number of doubts for the game as goalkeeper Hugo Lloris is trying to recover from a knee problem and Kyle Walker missed the game with Aston Villa because of a foot injury. Jan Vertonghen has been trying to shake off an illness and could be unfit for action.

Embed from Getty Images

Key Points

Newcastle United’s last five in the Premier League: L/L/L/L/L

Tottenham Hotspur’s last five in the Premier League: W/L/W/D/L

Key Stat: There has never been a goalless draw between these two sides in the Premier League.

Key Player: Harry Kane – Two Premier League games without a goal for this man is almost considered a drought by the unbelievably high standards he’s set this season. Spurs will be looking to the Englishman for a moment of inspiration on Tyneside as they look to score their first goal away from home in 202 minutes of football since Kane struck at Loftus Road on March 7th.

Embed from Getty Images

Score Prediction

Newcastle United 1-1 Tottenham Hotspur – This game is a battle of two sides who find themselves far from at their best and desperately looking for a spark, and for that reason we could see a tight game that ends all square.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Chelsea vs Manchester United

Competition: Premier League – Chelsea vs. Manchester United 

Venue: Stamford Bridge – Saturday, April 18th – 17:30 BST (12:30 ET)

Match Odds: Chelsea 1/1 – Draw 12/5 – Manchester United 11/4

Match Preview

Chelsea host Manchester United on Saturday evening in the standout fixture in the Premier League this weekend as they look to take one more step towards their first title since 2010.

The Blues endured a tough game last weekend against Queens Park Rangers, stealing all three points in the final knockings of the game through Cesc Fabregas, and are still seven points clear at the top of the table.

Manchester United will be absolutely buzzing ahead of this one though, and will be full of confidence after their demolition of rivals Manchester City at Old Trafford last Sunday.

Embed from Getty Images

Louis Van Gaal’s team are coming good and things are really kicking into place as they have won six on the bounce as things certainly look to be back on the up for United.

United are probably one of the last teams Chelsea will want to face at this stage of the season and this is a must win for Jose Mourinho ahead of the following week’s game against title rivals, Arsenal, at the Emirates.

The earlier meeting in the season between the two sides ended in a 1-1 draw and United haven’t beaten Chelsea at Stamford Bridge since 2012.

Embed from Getty Images

Van Gaal’s side are in fine form though and this is the strongest United side to face Chelsea since the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson.

This could be a pivotal game in the race for the title and Mourinho will not want to give the chasing pack any hope that his side can be caught.

Team News

Chelsea will be without goal-machine, Diego Costa, who also missed out in the reverse fixture, but Loic Remy could return after missing out last weekend too. Those are Chelsea’s only two injury concerns as the squad is in good shape. Cesc Fabregas and Nemanja Matic will need to be on high-alert once again after escaping last weekend without a yellow card. If either of the midfielders picks one up here they will miss the clash with Arsenal the following week.

Embed from Getty Images

Manchester United have just three injury concerns to Michael Carrick, Robin van Persie and Luke Shaw to deal with, but all three players could be set to return to the squad this weekend. Jonny Evans remains banned and we can expect a key performance from former Chelsea man, Juan Mata. The Spaniard has hit fine form and is scoring important goals, and he will have a point to prove against his former employers.

Key Points

Chelsea’s last five: W/D/W/W/W

Manchester United’s last five: W/W/W/W/W

Key Stat: Chelsea are unbeaten in their last 16 home league matches at Stamford Bridge and it will take a lot for United to end that run on Sunday afternoon.

Embed from Getty Images
Key Player: Juan Mata – United’s player of the moment is on fire, scoring in their wins over Liverpool and Manchester City as he looks to be back to his very best and Chelsea could be on the receiving end of his supreme talent this weekend.

Score Prediction

Chelsea 2-1 Manchester United – Chelsea to just edge over the line once again as they have done so many times this season. Mourinho will want a tidy and tight performance from his side but the United machine is moving at full pace, so they will be very hard to stop.