Premier League Predictions: Week 5 – Spurs to get Wembley win, Chelsea to pile misery on Arsenal

Premier League Predictions: Week 5 – The fifth weekend of action is set to be a good one. It might be early in the season but some real six-pointers are set to be played out over the weekend. All the action begins on Friday night as Bournemouth – who are still looking for their first points of the season – host Brighton.

Then Crystal Palace start life under Roy Hodgson at home to Southampton in the lunchtime kickoff on Saturday. The Eagles are desperate for points after a dreadful start to the campaign. Spurs will hope to finally get their first Premier League win at Wembley when they face Swansea in the evening fixture. Tottenham have impressed on the road but have dropped five points in two games at Wembley already.

Then all eyes will be on Sunday’s mouth-watering double-header. Chelsea host Arsenal in what should be another thrilling game, before Manchester United welcome Everton to Goodison Park.

Read on below for all this weekend’s Premier League predictions: Week 5 should be a good one…

Bournemouth 1-1 Brighton

The home side are yet to pick up a point so far this season. That said, they have had some difficult fixtures to contend with. Eddie Howe’s side have no reason to panic, but they do need to get off the mark sooner rather than later to avoid a losing streak dragging on. Brighton have given a good account of themselves in their opening four games. Their four points sees them sitting mid-table and they will feel they have a good chance of getting a positive result this weekend.

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Crystal Palace 0-0 Southampton

Roy Hodgson makes his Premier League return on Saturday as he takes charge of his first game since being appointed Crystal Palace manager. Frank De Boer’s reign lasted just 77 days, as the Eagles have failed to score a goal – let alone pick up any points – so far. They look to be in trouble and although Hodgson will steady the ship, they are unlikely to spark into life this soon. Southampton have been underwhelming themselves and have failed to score in three of their four games. All signs point to a dull draw.

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Huddersfield 1-2 Leicester

Huddersfield’s unbeaten start came to an end on Monday evening and now they face the tough challenge of bouncing back. The Premier League can be cruel to newly promoted sides, but a good opening three games for Huddersfield has silenced many of their doubters. Leicester City were unlucky not to pick up a point against the champions last weekend and they’ll be expecting to get at least a point here.

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Liverpool 2-1 Burnley

Burnley have already stunned Chelsea and Spurs in their two away games so far. They will arrive at Anfield looking to take points off Liverpool here too. They are set up to frustrate teams and will make it hard for the Reds to get in behind. Jurgen Klopp’s men have the added problem of being without Sadio Mane. It is unclear whether Philippe Coutinho will be brought back into the side at this stage, though Liverpool should still find enough to edge this one, with or without the Brazilian. Wednesday’s draw with Sevilla was disappointing but the Reds should be able to narrowly get past a Burnley side that will miss Tom Heaton.

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Newcastle 2-2 Stoke

The Toon Army have had a lift with back-to-back wins and now they need to capitalise on their recent form. They’ve not conceded in their last two but Stoke are going to cause any side problems defensively this season. The mood around St James Park will be as buoyant as ever ahead of this one. Stoke’s dramatic comeback against Man Utd along with their win over Arsenal shows they’re not to be reckoned with. Score draw.

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Watford 1-3 Man City

Watford have impressed under new boss Marco Silva so far this season. They sit fourth coming into the weekend, just two points behind joint-leaders Man City. They showed great spirit to earn a 3-3 home draw with Liverpool on the opening weekend and will be hoping for a similar result here. However, City look like they’re starting to find their feet. They annihilated a ten-man Liverpool team last weekend and have an incredible array of attacking options to choose from. Watford will try and make it difficult, though the visitors should prove too strong.

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West Brom 1-1 West Ham

West Brom have surprised many with their positive and attacking start to the new campaign. They’re sitting 9th having lost just one of their four games but anything other than a win will more than likely see them drop into the bottom half. West Ham have finally got off the mark and they must now climb the table. A draw wouldn’t be the worst result for either side but it’s one that doesn’t do a lot for them.

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Spurs 3-0 Swansea

If Spurs weren’t at Wembley this season, there’s a good chance they’d be coming into this game at the top of the table. They have won away at Newcastle and Everton without conceding a goal. But they’ve dropped five points in two games at Wembley against Chelsea and Burnley. Mauricio Pochettino is adamant Wembley isn’t to blame for their stuttering start to the campaign. And their impressive showing against Dortmund did show they can play there. But the longer they go without winning at home in the league, the more of a problem it will be. Swansea don’t look set to upset the hosts here though. They have only scored two goals this season and lost 1-0 at home to Newcastle last weekend. Spurs should prove too strong here.

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Chelsea 2-1 Arsenal

The Champions have silenced any talk of a repeat of their dismal title defence of just one year ago. They have won three on the spin in the league and have found their goalscoring touch. Arsenal’s problems have been well documented, however they do have a habit of picking up a result to get them going again when things have been tough. A win at the Bridge would be a huge result for Arsene Wenger & co, but Antonio Conte will have his side as well-drilled as ever. Expect a narrow victory for Chelsea.

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Man Utd 3-0 Everton

Everton couldn’t have been handed a tougher start to the season. They’ve already faced Man City, Chelsea and Spurs and now have a trip to Old Trafford to deal with. Add on the fact that Man Utd will have had two extra days to prepare for the game, and it’s difficult to see anything other than a home win. Jose Mourinho’s men have looked solid. They will have been disappointed with the 2-2 draw at Stoke last week, but they have the players to bounce back here. Everton struggled badly against Spurs and look set for another long afternoon on Sunday.

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Premier League Preview and Prediction: Tottenham vs Chelsea

Premier League: Tottenham Hotspur vs Chelsea FC

Wembley Stadium – Sunday, August 20 – 16:00 BST (11:00 ET)

Match Odds: Spurs 21/20 – Draw 5/2 – Chelsea 5/2

Tottenham vs Chelsea: Preview

Tottenham host Chelsea as they take to the field for their first Premier League game at Wembley this season. The home side will need to try and make the national stadium a fortress for the 2017/18 campaign, while work is finished on their new stadium.

Mauricio Pochettino’s men got off to a winning start at Newcastle last week. That 2-0 victory was fairly straightforward in the end, although it was certainly a closer game before Jonjo Shelvey’s red card.

The worry for Spurs is that they were so poor at Wembley last season, compared to White Hart Lane. They didn’t lose a single home game in the top flight last term. They only won one of five at Wembley in cup competitions.

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The fact is, if Spurs could have hand-picked an opponent for their home opener at the national stadium, it wouldn’t have been Chelsea. They’d have been a long way down the list. But this game also serves as the perfect chance for Tottenham to lay down a benchmark.

Chelsea will be desperate for a positive showing after last weekend’s shambolic defeat to Burnley. The Blues lost at home on the opening day for the first time in 24 years. They were a man down and three goals down at halftime before some parity was restored in the second half.

Although Cesc Fabregas was also sent off late on, leaving Antonio Conte with a selection dilemma ahead of their trip to Wembley. The Italian manager does not seem impressed with the club’s transfer business this summer. Things are not looking rosy for the reigning champions, but they still know how important a game this is.

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If the Blues can bounce back and defeat Spurs on Sunday, many will have forgotten about their horror start to the campaign. But a second successive defeat would leave Conte with a lot to think about, and very little time to make any transfers.

The two London rivals met three times in total last season. Chelsea came back to win 2-1 in the Premier League at Stamford Bridge in November. Before Spurs won 2-0 at White Hart Lane in January. The Blues then emerged as 4-2 winners in their FA Cup Semi-Final clash at Wembley in April, going on to face Arsenal in the final.

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Tottenham vs Chelsea: Team News

Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino has no fresh injury concerns ahead of their first home game of the season. Kyle Walker-Peters picked up man of the match on his Premier League debut last weekend. He should keep his place at right-back, with Kieran Trippier still injured. Moussa Sissoko might make way for Heung-Min Son in the starting lineup. Danny Rose, Erik Lamela and Georges-Kevin Nkoudou remain out injured.

Chelsea have a potential crisis on their hands for their second outing of the campaign. The Blues are without the suspended duo of Gary Cahill and Cesc Fabregas. Both picked up red cards in the 3-2 loss to Burnley and will miss out here. Diego Costa is still out in Brazil. Pedro should be fit enough to start. While Eden Hazard and Tiemoue Bakayoko both played in a secret friendly against QPR U20s on Thursday and might be in contention. Andreas Christensen might be called into start, if Antonio Conte remains with such a dilemma on his hands.

Tottenham vs Chelsea: Key Points

Spurs’ form: W

Chelsea’s form: L

Key Stat: Tottenham won one of just five home games at Wembley last season. While they failed to keep a single clean sheet at the national stadium in their five outings in 2016/17.

Key Player: Harry Kane – The Spurs star has still never scored a Premier League goal in the month of August. He hit the post against Newcastle last week and looked sharp, despite not finding the back of the net. The visit of Chelsea means he is in for a tough afternoon, but he has scored four goals in eight games against the Blues.

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Tottenham vs Chelsea: Prediction

Tottenham 2-0 Chelsea – Chelsea are unlikely to be as poor at the back as they were against Burnley last weekend. Bad ill discipline cost them and they can’t afford to make similar mistakes here. Spurs got off to a good start against Newcastle without really impressing. However, they will be desperate to get off to a winning start at Wembley. And given the current state of both teams coming into Sunday, it’s hard not to see the hosts winning.

Chelsea set to beat Spurs to PL title by 11 points if these results are anything to go by

The race for the Premier League title is continuing to keep fans guessing after Tottenham closed the gap on leaders Chelsea to just four points over the weekend. The two are set to face off for a place in the FA Cup Final this weekend in a huge game which will no doubt create even more talking points for who is going to end up winning the title.

Chelsea have a more favourable run-in on paper according to many fans and pundits alike and by looking into the results in the reverse fixtures, it is clear to see why that is the general consensus.

Chelsea’s remaining fixtures:

Southampton (H)
Everton (A)
Middlesbrough (H)
West Brom (A)
Watford (H)
Sunderland (H)

There is no easy game in the Premier League but Chelsea play four of their six remaining games at Stamford Bridge. The reverse fixtures saw Chelsea take maximum points and while the title race is still in their hands, Antonio Conte’s side will want his side to get the job done as soon as possible.

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Tottenham’s remaining fixtures:

Crystal Palace (A)
Arsenal (H)
West Ham (A)
Manchester United (H)
Leicester City (A)
Hull City (A)

Spurs have been in incredible form of late, but there is no doubting they have some tough fixtures in their run-in. Unlike Chelsea, four of their last six are away from home, while their two remaining home games are against top four chasing Arsenal and Manchester United.

If Mauricio Pochettino’s side do not improve on their results in the reverse fixtures they have very little chance of winning the league. They drew against Arsenal, lost to Man United, drew at home to Leicester and won the other three games, giving them a total of 11 points from a possible 18.

While it is unlikely both Chelsea and Spurs will replicate the exact same outcomes in their remaining fixtures, it does give some insight into potential results. Chelsea would hypothetically finish the season on 93 points, if they picked up the maximum 18 on offer, while Spurs would stand to take 11 points, putting their final tally at 82.

Are Chelsea going to win their 5th Premier League title or will Tottenham pull off an incredible turnaround?

Why Dele Alli could become one of the greatest Premier League midfielders of all time

Dele Alli is having a fantastic Premier League season for Tottenham. He has netted an impressive 16 goals, racked up five assists and has fully deserved the plaudits he has received. His style of play is quite unique and his ability to find and create space gives him great grounding to go on to be a Premier League great. His performances this season have heaped huge expectancy on his shoulders and it’s important for him to keep his head down and work hard to continue to improve.

Age

At just 21 Alli could potentially play at the top level for another 14 or more years if the players he is likened to (Frank Lampard/Steven Gerrard) are anything to go by. While a lot of young English players struggle to deal with the pressure they’re under to deliver, Alli seems to be taking things in his stride.

Goalscoring

As mentioned, Alli has netted 16 league goals this season, taking his overall total to 26 in 63 Premier League appearances, giving him a strike rate of 0.41 goals per game. By comparison Lampard over 611 games managed a staggering 176 goals, a rate of 0.28, while Gerrard netted 120 in 504, a rate of 0.22. Alli’s strike rate will no doubt slow down with the more appearances he makes but he has given himself a platform to potentially reach the lofty heights of any midfield great in terms of goals.

Positioning

Alli was signed as a deep-lying playmaker but has been utilised in just about every attacking position this season, including stepping in for Harry Kane during some of his time on the sidelines. His versatility through the middle makes him really difficult to pick up. If Alli can stay as difficult to mark in the coming years he will not only continue his goalscoring form but also free up teammates with more attention turning to him from the opposition.

Does Dele Alli have what it takes to become a Premier League great?

Spurs can win first Premier League title if Mauricio Pochettino signs these players

Mauricio Pochettino has been impressive since taking over at Tottenham Hotspur but they are still the nearly men at the moment. They’re challenging for the Premier League title again this season but look more likely to finish in either second or third place with Chelsea ten points clear. Squad depth is a small issue that Spurs are still battling and if they were to sign these three players, they could put themselves in a really strong position to win a first Premier League title next season…

Alejandro Gomez

The Atalanta forward has made a real statement with his performances in Serie A this season. He is an extremely versatile player who is capable of causing trouble as a centre-attacking midfielder, a winger or even as a striker. The Argentinian wouldn’t cost Spurs the earth and a move would be favourable as it would allow him to play in the Champions League next season. He has netted 11 goals in 31 appearances and would be a hugely reliable back-up to take some of the pressure off Harry Kane.

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Ross Barkley

There isn’t a huge amount to say about this exciting young Englishman that hasn’t already been said. He is built for the fast-paced attacking style of football that Spurs play. While he might be a more expensive option than some other attacking midfielders he has plenty of Premier League experience already. At just 23 he could form a formidable partnership with Dele Alli for both club and country and the appeal of competing at the highest level makes a move possible. Whether or not Barkley would accept not starting every game is a different question but if he wants a move to a Champions League club he will have to embrace the competition for places and Spurs would be a great place for him to develop.

Christian Pulisic

The 18-year-old American is one of the hottest prospects in the Bundesliga. Despite being little-known to many across Europe he is showing signs of working his way to the very top. He has impressed for Borussia Dortmund this season and hasn’t looked out of place against anyone in the Bundesliga or Champions League. He would provide Spurs with even more unpredictability and would certainly be an ideal replacement for Erik Lamela, whose future looks uncertain as a result of injury struggles as well as time out due to personal reasons this season.

Spurs are not far off landing some silverware soon, but they need to win something to silence some of their doubters, including fans of their own. Pochettino looks set to stay at the club and it’s an exciting time to be a Tottenham fan. They’re building for the long run and increasing their squad size would only give them a greater chance at success across all fronts in the 2017/18 campaign.

Will Spurs try to sign any of these players this summer? How far off winning the Premier League are they?

Analysis: How Tottenham’s goal output will be affected following Kane’s injury

Tottenham eased into the FA Cup semi-finals with a 6-o win over Millwall on Sunday but they may have lost Harry Kane for the next few weeks, if not the rest of the season.

The England striker limped off after rolling his ankle in the sixth minute on Sunday and Mauricio Pochettino revealed after the game that it was the same injury as the one that ruled him out for seven weeks back in September.

Kane has been in incredible form in 2017, scoring 14 goals in 13 games in all competitions and picking up February’s Premier League Player of the Month award. He has scored three hat-tricks in that time and is tied with Romelu Lukaku as the league’s top goalscorer on 22.

 

Just last week, we wrote about his incredible form and how he is on track to break Alan Shearer’s incredible Premier League goalscoring record. But that looks to have been put on hold, perhaps for the rest of the season.

Spurs made light work of Millwall after Kane’s departure, with Heung-Min Son scoring his first Spurs hat-trick after filling in for Kane as the lone striker. But that was Millwall who are miles off Spurs, proven by the fact they sit 48 places below them in English football.

Spurs have an FA Cup semi-final to prepare for as well as 11 more crucial Premier League games as they look to secure a Champions League spot for the second-straight season.

There is no current timescale on Kane’s injury, although he left White Hart Lane on crutches on Sunday evening and some reports suggest his season could be over if the injury is as bad as feared.

Spurs struggled during their ten games without Kane earlier this season, scoring just 13 goals while he was on the sidelines – almost half of which came in a 5-0 EFL Cup win over Gillingham. The evidence below proves just how important his goalscoring is to the side.

2016/17
Games
Win Rate
Goals
Goals Per Game
With Kane
29
59%
63
2.2
Without Kane
12
66%
19
1.6

On top of the ten games he missed through injury, Kane also sat out of two FA Cup games in January as he was rested. Tottenham have actually registered a better win percentage without Kane than with their star attacker this campaign. But it’s worth noting that three of their eight wins without Kane came against Gillingham, Aston Villa and Wycombe.

The more obvious concern is just how much Spurs struggle to score goals without the frontman, averaging 0.6 goals less per game without him.

Below is a list of games Kane would miss over the next seven weeks, assuming he has picked up the exact same injury as earlier this term:

March 19 – Southampton (H)

April 1 – Burnley (A)

April 5 – Swansea (A)

April 8 – Watford (H)

April 15 – Bournemouth (H)

April 22/23 – Chelsea (N) – FA Cup semi-final

April 30 – Arsenal (H)

The standout fixtures are the two at the end of April – the FA Cup semi-final against Chelsea at Wembley and the final North London Derby at White Hart Lane. The promising thing for Spurs is that those two games are six weeks away, so there is still a chance Kane could recover in time, depending on the severity of his injury.

Heung-Min Son is likely to be the man to fill in for Kane over the next few weeks, although Vincent Janssen offers an alternative option for Pochettino. The Dutchman’s struggles have been well documented over the course of this season but he scored his first goal from open play in a Spurs shirt during the win over Millwall and could now be poised for a regular run in the side.

But regardless of who fills in for Harry Kane, they won’t be able to replicate his tremendous goalscoring form of late. Spurs just have to hope that his absence doesn’t lead to their season unravelling at the most vital stage.

How do you think Tottenham will fare without Harry Kane following his latest injury? 

FA Cup Quarter-Final Predictions: Big guns to deliver, another tough Chelsea return for Jose’s United

The FA Cup quarter-finals take place over the weekend with six Premier League clubs battling for a spot in the semis. Middlesbrough host Manchester City on Saturday lunchtime, while Arsenal face a non-league side once again in Lincoln City later on in the day. The remaining two games are spread over the following two days as Tottenham host League One side Millwall on Sunday and it’s another Chelsea return for Jose Mourinho with Manchester United heading to Stamford Bridge on Monday night.

Read on for all four of our FA Cup quarter-final predictions…

Middlesbrough 1-3 Manchester City

Middlesbrough had to wait to find out who their opponents were in the quarter-final due to City’s replay against Huddersfield. It’s fair to say Pep Guardiola’s side made light work of reaching the quarters at the second attempt with their 5-1 win. Boro will have to work extremely hard to progress here considering they have won just three games in 2017 but City will be aware all of those wins have come in the FA Cup. However, the depth of Guardiola’s squad should see them through comfortably this weekend.

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Arsenal 4-1 Lincoln City

Arsenal face their second non-league side in a row in the competition with the visit of Lincoln after the away side stunned Premier League outfit Burnley with an astonishing late winner in the previous round. Arsene Wenger simply cannot lose this game, the pressure has continually mounted on him this season and if he is to depart at the end of the campaign he will wish to do so with silverware. This is Arsenal’s last chance of a trophy this season and they should progress into the semi-final without too much difficulty.

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Tottenham Hotspur 3-0 Millwall

Spurs face off against League One side Millwall on Sunday afternoon in a game that is expected to be hotly contested both on the field and in the stands. Harry Kane comes up against another of his former clubs at which he spent time on loan and with the incredible form the Spurs striker is in it is difficult not to see him finding the back of the net once again. Dare we say there could be another Kane hat-trick at White Hart Lane?

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Chelsea 2-1 Manchester United (A.E.T)

This is clearly the standout fixture of the quarter-finals. Jose Mourinho endured an incredibly tough return to Stamford Bridge earlier in the season in that 4-0 loss and he will make sure his side are not humiliated again. This looks a tie likely to reach extra-time, since there are no longer replays in this round of the competition. The game is going to be a battle, United are without their talisman Zlatan Ibrahimovic, while Antonio Conte will be expecting his side to do what they’ve been doing all season and get the job done. Chelsea to edge it.

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Harry Kane making huge strides to becoming Premier League’s all-time leading scorer

At the tail end of the 2015/16 season we assessed whether or not Harry Kane was on track to become the Premier League’s all-time leading goalscorer. Nine months on and Kane has been in incredible form. He’s the league’s top scorer for the season with 19 and the confidence of the England international is there for all to see.

So how do Kane’s stats compare to the end of last season?

Quite simply, Kane is even better. The 23-year-old goal-machine had a 0.57 goals per game ratio when we last assessed his performance levels and as predicted he is continuing to improve. Kane has now scored 68 goals in his 108 Premier League games, a ratio of 0.62 GPG.

As previously mentioned, Alan Shearer, the current record holder, ended his career with 260 goals in 441 Premier League games. His scoring ratio was 0.58 GPG, which Kane has now surpassed. While it’s obvious Kane’s scoring ratio will change as the games pass, he is on course to better Shearers record.

How long will it take him to break the record?

This is almost an impossible question to answer, however with a slightly different method than we did before we can work it out hypothetically. Kane is 192 goals behind Shearer and has played 333 games less. The goals per game ratio needed to score 192 in 333 games is 0.57 – an output Kane is currently bettering by 0.05.

If Kane were to continue on 0.62 GPG ratio he would score a further 206 goals in those 333 games. This hypothetically means if he played the exact same amount of games as Shearer on his current ratio he would score 274 league goals, breaking the record.

So does he have the games available?

Shearer was 35 when he retired. Kane is now 23 and his birthday always falls between Premier League seasons. With that in mind he has 11 years come the start of next season to reach Shearer’s retirement age, so 11 more seasons including the reminder (11) of this to play. That would offer 418 games plus the 11 from this season, so 427 games.

On his current ratio Kane would need 310 games to score 192, so he has 118 games to make up the difference if he gets injured or has a dry spell.

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Will he break the record?

There are no guarantees Kane will break the record, he could leave the Premier League altogether or have his career cut short through any number of reasons. All that can be said is with the stats mentioned Kane is in a strong position and he will be focused nothing but each passing game.

Premier League Predictions: Chelsea to extend lead at the top, Bournemouth’s woes to continue

The Premier League returns this weekend after a two-week break for European and FA Cup commitments for a number of top flight clubs. Others have had two full weeks to recover and will hope some warm-weather training will help inspire them to three points this weekend.

Sunday will also see Manchester United and Southampton go head-to-head at Wembley in the EFL Cup Final. Arsenal and Manchester City will not be in action, as a result of Sunday’s final, but read on for all of our Gameweek 26 predictions…

Chelsea 3-1 Swansea

Chelsea face a Swansea side who have dramatically improved since the appointment of Paul Clement. The reverse fixture was filled with controversy as Chelsea felt hard-done by to not come away with all three points. They’ll be looking to make amends here and extend their lead at the top with both Manchester United and Arsenal not playing in the league this weekend.

Crystal Palace 1-1 Middlesbrough

Crystal Palace in are in trouble. They need to get a positive result out of this one otherwise Middlesbrough will open the gap between themselves and the bottom three. A win for Sam Allardyce’s side could potentially take them up to 16th and could help to inspire them to get on a run. Middlesbrough know they have to avoid defeat to risk potentially being dragged into the relegation zone, so a draw looks likely.

Everton 3-1 Sunderland

Everton are on an eight game unbeaten run in the Premier League. They’re still in the mix for a European placed finish so have to fight hard to cause the sides above them problems. Sunderland’s so-called revival looks more like a one-game wonder as they were thumped 4-0 having dished out their own four-goal haul the game week before. This looks like a foregone conclusion but you can’t rule Sunderland out of scoring with Jermain Defoe leading the line.

Hull 2-2 Burnley

Hull City look capable of staying up this season but they have to make their home form count. Burnley cannot buy a win on their travels and despite their commanding position over their opponents here it looks like that unwanted run will continue. Hull have managed to pick up seven points from the last 15 on offer, so a draw here wouldn’t be the worst result.

West Brom 2-0 Bournemouth

West Brom are unbeaten in four and looking as solid as usual ahead of what looks a very winnable fixture against a Bournemouth team that are seemingly in freefall. The Cherries have lost three in a row and conceded six in their most recent away game at Everton. Eddie Howe’s men are out of form but will hope they are clear enough of the bottom three to be fully dragged into a relegation scrap.

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Watford 2-2 West Ham

Both these sides have had two full weeks to prepare for what is a big game for both sets of players. Watford have only lost two of their last 11 at home and are a tough unit to break down, but West Ham have been playing with more belief of late and goals are to be expected in what should be an entertaining game.

Spurs 2-1 Stoke

This is a massive game for Tottenham after their disappointing midweek Europa League exit to Gent at Wembley. Mauricio Pochettino knows his players need to bounce back straightaway, but the fact that his first-team played on Thursday night could play a major role in the outcome of the game. Stoke have been inconsistent all season but will fancy their chances after an extended break. They don’t do well in London though, having only won one of their last 20 trips to the capital…

EFL Cup Final – Manchester United 2-0 Southampton

Jose Mourinho loves playing cup finals at Wembley. He’s only lost one of 11 finals during his managerial career and has his United team firing on all cylinders ahead of Sunday’s clash. It’s a huge game for the Saints, who have never won the League Cup in their history, but they are up against it and it’s tough to see any other outcome than a United win.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Liverpool vs Tottenham

Competition: Premier League – Liverpool vs. Spurs

Venue: Anfield – Saturday, February 11 – 17:30 GMT (12:30 ET) 

Match Odds: Liverpool 5/4 – Draw 23/10 – Spurs 5/2

Match Preview

Liverpool host Spurs in this weekend’s standout Premier League fixture at Anfield on Saturday evening as the race for the top four is set to take another important twist.

The Reds have had an awful start to 2017, winning just one of their 10 fixtures in all competitions – and that came at League Two side Plymouth.

Jurgen Klopp is under pressure to get his side firing on all cylinders again, and the visit of Spurs offers the perfect opportunity to pump some belief back into the home supporters.

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Liverpool tend to perform well against the league’s biggest sides, but Spurs offer a similar style and that should lead to a really entertaining clash.

Spurs know that a win here would put them in a really strong position ahead of a two-week break from league football. Mauricio Pochettino’s side can move six points behind Chelsea with a win, who don’t play until Sunday afternoon.

Tottenham haven’t lost a league game in nine, winning seven of those, and have the league’s best defence ahead of Saturday’s game.

Spurs have already lost at Anfield this season, with the Reds knocking them out of the EFL Cup earlier this term. The two sides drew 1-1 at White Hart Lane in the reverse league fixture back in August and this is expected to be another close game.

Team News

Liverpool have doubts hanging over Dejan Lovren, Adam Lallana and Ragnar Klavan, while Danny Ings and Marko Grujic remain out. Loris Karius could be recalled ahead of Simon Mignolet as Klopp continues to rotate his goalkeepers.

Spurs will be without defensive duo Jan Vertonghen and Danny Rose for the trip to Anfield, while Erik Lamela and Georges-Kevin Nkoudou are also sidelined. Kieran Trippier is a doubt but should make the bench. Pochettino could name an unchanged side to the one that beat Middlesbrough last week.

Key Points

Liverpool’s last five: D/D/L/D/L

Tottenham’s last five: W/D/W/D/W

Key Stat: Mauricio Pochettino has never beaten Liverpool as Spurs manager. He’s drawn three and lost three of the previous six meetings with the Reds.

Key Player: Harry Kane – The Spurs striker has scored as many league goals in 2017 (6) as the entire Liverpool team. If the Reds defence fail to keep him quiet, they will be in for a long evening.

Score Prediction

Liverpool 1-1 Spurs – This is an enormous game for both sides and a loss for either would leave them in a bit of trouble, especially as there are going to be two weeks before the next round of Premier League matches after this weekend. Spurs need to avoid defeat to have any hope of staying on Chelsea’s tail, while Liverpool need to prove they are still ready to fight for a top four finish against a fellow rival.