Premier League Preview and Prediction: Leicester City vs Arsenal

Competition: Premier League – Leicester City vs. Arsenal

Venue: King Power Stadium – Saturday, August 20 – 17:30 BST (12:30 ET)

Match Odds: Leicester 19/10 – Draw 13/5 – Arsenal 13/10

Match Preview

Leicester City welcome Arsenal to the King Power Stadium late on Saturday afternoon in a tie both sides will be desperate to win after disappointing opening weekend performances.

The champions come into this one off the back of their 2-1 defeat to Hull, a result that not many would have predicted.

Claudio Ranieri’s side looked stuck for ideas on how to break down their resilient opponents. They may well be better suited to this tie as it will be more open, meaning they will have more chances to express their counter-attacking play.

Leicester will be looking to exact some revenge on Arsenal as they were thumped 5-2 by the North London side at home last season.

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Arsenal’s 4-3 loss in their opener against Liverpool has heaped more pressure on Arsene Wenger. It’s clear they have what it takes to break opponents down as they scored three, but the biggest concern for fans is their lacklustre defence.

Wenger’s injury list just seems to keep on expanding and another week has passed without any transfer activity at the club.

Arsenal come into this one under the spotlight. They cannot afford to lose their opening two games for the risk of already being six points behind their title rivals.

Worryingly for Arsenal they face a Leicester side who had impeccable home form in their title campaign. The Gunners drew their final three away games in the Premier League last season so it will be interesting to see if they can break that trend and take all three points here.

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Team News

Leicester City have no injury concerns. Ranieri will more than likely opt for a similar starting lineup as he did against Hull. The Foxes have had a huge boost this week as Riyad Mahrez penned a contract extension, ending any uncertainty over his future.

Arsenal’s squad is still taking shape. As we know Laurent Koscielny, Mesut Ozil and Olivier Giroud returned to training late after Euro 2016. On top of Arsenal’s current injury list of Per Mertesacker, Gabriel Paulista, Jack Wilshere, Danny Welbeck and Carl Jenkinson, both Aaron Ramsey and Alex Iwobi were forced off in the game against Liverpool. The two latest setbacks increased their injury list to seven players and Arsenal could have up to ten players out here, including the trio who returned late from the Euros.

Key Points

Leicester City’s last five: L

Arsenal’s last five: L

Key Stat: Fortress – Leicester City are unbeaten in their last 15 home outings in the Premier League.

Key Player: Alexis Sanchez – There will be added pressure on Arsenal after their opening day defeat and they need their key players to work even harder considering how many regulars are absent. Sanchez has the ability to cut apart any defence and he will be expected to provide in this one.

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Score Prediction

Leicester City 1-2 Arsenal – Arsenal to get off the mark and narrowly beat a Leicester side who would not have been expecting to lose their first two games of the 2016/17 Premier League season.

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Premier League Preview and Prediction: Manchester United vs Leicester City

Competition: Premier League – Manchester United vs. Leicester City

Venue: Old Trafford – Sunday, May 1st – 14:05 GMT (09:05 ET)

Match Odds: Man United 1/1 – Draw 23/10 – Leicester 29/10

Match Preview

Manchester United welcome Leicester City to Old Trafford in what could be the day Claudio Ranieri’s side make history and win the Premier League.

United’s last Premier League game was their 2-0 win over Crystal Palace. There is still a chance for them to finish in the top four, they sit five points behind but they do have a game in hand. The Red Devils are reliant on other results going their way.

Louis Van Gaal’s side will be full of confidence having dramatically reached the FA Cup Final last weekend, giving them a great chance of silverware this season.

Manchester United have won their last six home matches against Leicester so the away side will have to break that trend if they are to be crowned champions this weekend.

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Leicester City extended their unbeaten run to seven games last weekend with their 4-0 demolition over Swansea.

Ranieri’s side are within touching distance of the Premier League title, but only all three points will secure the silverware this weekend.

Leicester have won six of their last seven league games and kept six clean sheets along the way. We can expect them to be as difficult as ever to break down here.

A win here would cap off what has been an amazing season for Leicester, they have been in good form away, winning three on the bounce.

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Team News

Manchester United could be without up to five through injury as Bastian Schweinsteiger, Adnan Januzaj, Luke Shaw and Will Keane are all ruled out, while Phil Jones is a doubt.

Leicester City are still expected to be without Matthew James through injury, while Jamie Vardy is serving the additional game of his suspension.

Key Points

Manchester United’s last five Premier League games: W/W/L/W/W

Leicester City’s last five Premier League games: W/W/W/D/W

Key Stat: Manchester United have won their last six home matches in the Premier League.

Key Player: Kasper Schmeichel – The Danish ‘keeper could follow in his fathers footsteps and win the Premier League title at Old Trafford. We can expect both ‘keepers to be busy but Schmeichel’s performances have been an integral part of Leicester’s chase for the title. He has kept seven clean sheets in his last ten league games.

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Score Prediction

Manchester United 0-0 Leicester City – The champagne will have to stay on ice for at least another week for Leicester City. This will be a very tight tie with neither side looking weak at the back. Manchester United will have to do something not many sides have successfully achieved over the course of the season and break Leicester down. With both goalkeepers in fantastic form they will be the stars of the show here.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Leicester vs Swansea

Competition: Premier League – Leicester City vs. Swansea City

Venue: King Power Stadium – Sunday, April, 24 – 16:15 BST (11:15 ET)

Match Odds: Leicester City 8/11 – Draw 5/2 – Swansea City 4/1

Match Preview

Leicester City face Swansea City as they look to strengthen their grip the Premier League title on Sunday with the end of the season drawing ever closer.

Leicester are unbeaten in their last eight league matches, but did drop two points in their 2-2 draw with West Ham last week, as Tottenham closed the gap at the top to five points following their win at Stoke on Monday.

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Jamie Vardy was sent off against West Ham last weekend and his absence may cause problems for Claudio Ranieri’s men. The striker has been effective at turning defences and running in behind and the loss of energy up top could affect the Foxes a lot on Sunday as the England striker sits out of his first league game this season.

The Foxes have showed spirit and fight all year and will need to display their tenacity, along with quality, through the final four matches of the season to seal a miracle title.

Swansea have arguably nothing to play for, as their Premier League status seems all but secure with the Swans sitting ten points above the drop with four to play.

They may have only lost one of their last four, but this season is one to forget for Swansea. They are building for next year and should be playing for the fans so a win wouldn’t be beyond them on Sunday.

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They have the quality to cause Leicester problems and will be desperate to get one over on the Foxes following the 3-0 home defeat earlier in the season

The problem for Swansea is they haven’t won away at Leicester since 1950 and so history, as well as form, is heavily against them this weekend.

Team News

Leicester City have no injury worries for the clash but Jamie Vardy is suspended so Shinji Okazaki and Leonardo Ulloa are expected to play up front if Claudio Ranieri sticks to the usual 4-4-2 formation.

Swansea City have a full squad available and an unchanged side is expected to be named.

Key Points

Leicester City’s last five: W/W/W/W/D

Swansea City’s last five: L/W/D/W/L

Key Stat: Swansea City haven’t won any of their last eleven visits to Leicester.

Key Player: Riyad Mahrez – The Algerian winger will need to step up as Jamie Vardy is suspended and their counter-attacking style will be tested without Vardy running in behind. A lot lies on the PFA Player of the Year favourite, but Mahrez has shown this season that he has the skill to turn games in a flash.

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Score Prediction

Leicester City 2-1 Swansea City – This is a game Leicester will have to win if they are to win the title and we expect them to make it over the line. Swansea should give them a test, but will more than likely come up short against a spirited outfit looking to cope without Vardy.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Leicester vs Newcastle

Competition: Premier League – Leicester City vs. Newcastle United

Venue: King Power Stadium – Monday, March 14 – 20:00 GMT (15:00 ET)

Match Odds: Leicester 4/7 – Draw 3/1 – Newcastle 19/4

Match Preview

Leicester face Newcastle in a crucial Premier League fixture for both clubs on Monday night, with plenty of focus sure to be on new Magpies manager Rafa Benitez.

Benitez, who was sacked by Real Madrid in January after just seven months in charge, replaced Steve McClaren on Friday and will now be tasked with trying to keep Newcastle in the Premier League.

He faces a stiff first game in charge though, with a trip to Premier League leaders Leicester probably the most difficult fixture he could have been handed.

The Foxes are five points clear at the top of the table heading into the weekend and have not lost in ten games at the King Power Stadium.

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A resilient 1-0 win at Watford last time out saw Leicester reinstalled as title favourites and they are now just nine games away from landing a historic and remarkable title win.

Newcastle are enduring a completely different campaign. They sit second from bottom and are in real danger of being relegated.

However, the Magpies have a game in hand over the clubs around them and are only a point from safety heading into the weekend. They will hope the appointment of Benitez can inspire things to improve on the field.

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The 3-1 loss at home to Bournemouth last weekend saw them lose their third league game on the bounce. The Magpies have not lost four in a row all season.

Leicester won the reverse fixture 3-0 at St James’s Park and will be looking for a fourth consecutive victory against Newcastle in all competitions on Monday night.

Team News

Leicester’s only current injury concern is Matthew James and so Claudio Ranieri will be able to pick his strongest possible lineup for the visit of Newcastle on Monday night.

All eyes will be on Rafa Benitez’s first team selection as Newcastle boss on Monday evening but the Spanish manager could be without as many as 12 first team players. Andros Townsend and Cheick Tiote are both doubts, while Tim Krul, Ivan Toney, Gabriel Obertan, Massadio Haidara, Pappis Cisse, Kevin Mbabu, Curtis Good, Sylvain Marveaux, Chancel Mbemba and Fabricio Coloccini remain out.

Key Points

Leicester’s last five: W/W/L/W/L

Newcastle’s last five: L/W/L/L/L

Key Stat: Monday blues – Newcastle have lost each of their last eight Premier League games played on a Monday night, failing to score in any of their last five Monday fixtures. All eight have been played away from home.

Key Player: Riyad Mahrez – The Algerian playmaker has been a revelation for the Foxes this year. He netted the winner in Leicester’s 1-0 win at Watford and has now been involved in 26 Premier League goals. He is the only top flight player in double figures for both goals (15) and assists (11) this term.

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Score Prediction

Leicester 2-2 Newcastle – Leicester haven’t looked as dangerous in recent weeks and had to settle for a 2-2 draw with West Brom in their most recent home game. Newcastle’s managerial change should see the players improve and Rafa Benitez will be desperate to avoid defeat in his first outing as manager. A close-fought battle looks likely, though there could be some goals in this.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Aston Villa vs Leicester City

Competition: Premier League – Aston Villa vs. Leicester City

Venue: Villa Park – Saturday, January 16 – 17:30 GMT (12:30 ET)

Match Odds: Aston Villa 23/10 – Draw 23/10 – Leicester City 6/5

Match Preview

Aston Villa welcome highflying Leicester City to Villa Park on Saturday night in a clash between two sides fighting at opposite ends of the Premier League.

Villa picked up their first league win since August on Tuesday night and their first under Rémi Garde. Although it’s a relief their three points have finally come there is much work to be done for Garde and co.

Garde’s remain rock bottom on 11 points and they must build on Tuesday’s win if they are to stand any chance of avoiding the drop.

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Leicester City come into this one off the back of their 1-0 away win over Tottenham Hotspur and are level on points at the top of the table.

Claudio Ranieri’s are in a prime position to finish in the top four with their current form in mind, and winning the Premier League is not unthinkable given how results are going this season.

Leicester need their star players to continue to perform at the highest level and goals will continue to come from all-over the field. They showed great resilience to take all three points on Wednesday night.

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Team News

Aston Villa have four injury concerns heading into this one. Alan Hutton, Jack Grealish, Jordan Amavi and Gabriel Agbonlahor are all racing to be fit. Rémi Garde is unlikely to change his starting XI after they picked up three points in midweek.

Leicester City have just two injury concerns. James Matthew and Jeffrey Schlupp are both doubts. Claudio Ranieri still has concerns over the fitness of Jamie Vardy and will be looking to give a rest at some point, but he will more than likely start.

Key Points

Aston Villa’s last five in the Premier League: D/D/L/L/W

Leicester City’s last five in the Premier League: W/L/D/D/W

Key Stat: Leicester City have won five of their last six Premier League away games and have kept three clean sheets on the bounce.

Key Player: Riyad Mahrez – The Leicester playmaker cannot be overlooked for key man in this one. He has bagged 13 goals in 20 games this season and always seems likely to make his side tick.

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Score Prediction

Aston Villa 1-2 Leicester City – Leicester to just edge it in a game which will not be as straightforward as it would seem on paper. Villa’s midweek win will have done wonders for their confidence and they will provide a tough task for Leicester in this tie.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Liverpool vs Leicester

Competition: Premier League – Liverpool FC vs. Leicester FC.

Venue: Anfield – Saturday, December 26 – 15:00 GMT (10:00 ET)

Match Odds: Liverpool 10/11 – Draw 13/5 – Leicester 14/5 

Match Preview

Liverpool welcome high-flying Leicester to Anfield in what looks to be a game full of goals on a busy Boxing Day in the Premier League.

The Reds have hit a poor run of form at the worst part of the season, with injuries also depleting Jurgen Klopp of options.

Liverpool’s 3-0 drubbing at Watford last time out saw them fall down to 9th in the table, five points off the top four, and so a response is needed.

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The home crowd will be hoping for three points but know that Leicester are not to be taken lightly at all, especially as they sit 14 points ahead of the Reds after 17 games.

Claudio Ranieri’s team have been nothing short of subliminal. They top the table at Christmas and have only lost one game all season.

They come into Boxing Day unbeaten in ten league games and their 3-2 win at Everton made it three victories on the spin.

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A fourth on the bounce at Anfield would be another remarkable achievement and is one that would hardly be a surprise given the differences in form.

Leicester haven’t beaten Liverpool in any of their last six Premier League meetings, though, and a win at Anfield here would be their first since 2000.

Team News

Liverpool will still be without seven players through injury as Dejan Lovren, Martin Skrtel, Joe Gomez, Danny Ings, James Milner, Daniel Sturridge and Jon Flanagan remain sidelined. Simon Mignolet is a doubt but will replace Adam Bogdan in goal if fit enough.

Leicester boss Claudio Ranieri has received a boost ahead of the trip to Anfield as Robert Huth will return to the side after serving his suspension. Jeffrey Schlupp, Matthew James and Danny Drinkwater are still out, while Jamie Vardy is a doubt with a hamstring problem but should start.

Key Points

Liverpool’s last five: W/W/L/D/L

Leicester’s last five: W/D/W/W/W

Key Stat: Leicester have scored three goals in each of their last four away games in the Premier League.

Key Player: Riyad Mahrez – The Algerian playmaker has arguably been the most impressive player in the Premier League this season. He has scored 13 goals and has picked up 7 assists in 16 appearances for Leicester and looks unstoppable.

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Score Prediction

Liverpool 1-2 Leicester – It’s tough to see Leicester losing a game at the moment. They are in sensational form and keep producing quality when expected to falter. Liverpool are in poor form and a mounting injury list won’t help their cause in this Boxing Day cracker.