Will London’s blues help Manchester’s blues keep pace? | EPL Matchweek 6 Preview
As everyone begins to recover from the shock that was Norwich defeating Manchester City, Pep Guardiola’s men find themselves five points adrift of Liverpool already. Whilst it’s still very early in the season, City fans will be hoping their blue brothers from London can draw first blood against Jurgen Klopp’s side who will be slightly weary from their midweek Champions League trip to Naples.
Leicester City vs Tottenhamn | King Power Stadium | Saturday 9:30pm
Sitting equal on points, we’d challenge anyone to make a clear argument as to why either of these two sides would be clear favourites over the other.
On paper, Spurs are the better side with big name quality all over the pitch and an attacking lineup that finally seems to be clicking. Harry Kane broke his recent duck midweek in the Champions League, even if it was from the penalty spot. But it’s Son Heung-min who the Foxes will be most concerned with. The Korean has really hit his straps of late and only played the final 20 minutes of Wednesday’s match meaning he’ll be fresh and firing for Saturday night.
But Leicester are coming off their first loss of the season and have had a full week uninterrupted to prepare for how they’ll hit back. Spurs’ defence looked shaky against Olympiacos and the prospect of a firing Jamie Vardy won’t entice them one bit. He’s scored four goals in his last three games against Spurs which would be impressive if it wasn’t for the fact that Harry Kane has scored 13 goals in his last 12 games against Leicester – more than any other side in his career.
Chelsea vs Liverpool | Stamford Bridge | Monday 1:30am
Two historic heavyweights with different fortunes of late face-off and Chelsea will be hoping to be the first team to take points off Liverpool this season. Chelsea have form in upsetting teams at the top of the table but their recent form against Liverpool isn’t great (W2 D5 L3).
Liverpool are unbeaten in their last 22 league games but they suffered a hard 2-0 loss away to Napoli midweek in the Champions League. Whilst Chelsea too lost to Valencia at home, Liverpool’s travel could be the chink in the armour the blues need.
Frank Lampard will have to shore up his defence though who have let through the second most goals in the league so far. Firmino, Salah and Mane are the last people you can afford to show defensive frailties against so two guesses as to what Chelsea have worked on this week.
Manchester City vs Watford | Etihad Stadium | Saturday midnight
Watford may be the unfortunate victims of a spurned Manchester City. Norwich provided us with the biggest upset in recent memory last week but you can expect Pep Guardiola’s men to respond with unwavering force on Saturday night.
They defeated Shakhtar Donetsk at a canter Thursday morning whilst resting Sergio Aguero, David Silva and Bernardo Silva. Those three are sure to feature heavily against Watford who are still yet to register their first win of the season. You can’t see it coming this week though.
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West Ham United vs Manchester United | London Stadium | Sunday 11pm
West Ham are unbeaten since the first day of the season and are equal with Manchester United on points. The Hammers have looked much better so far this season than any in recent memory but they were somewhat lucky to come away with a draw against Aston Villa last weekend.
Manchester United have a short turn-around after their Europa League tie on Friday morning but Ole Gunnar Solskjær made sure to rest a significant portion of his main stars, opting to run out a number of his younger boys. Last week’s win against Leicester was an important one but Ole will be desperate for his side to start building some kind of momentum in the league to ensure they keep pace with the other top four contenders.
Arsenal vs Aston Villa | Emirates Stadium | Monday 1:30am
Arsenal fans will still be fuming after they blew a two goal lead against bottom-of-the-table Watford last week. A 3-0 win in the Europa League will have done little to quel that disappointment and Unai Emery will be imploring his men to push hard for their first win in four league matches.
Aston Villa seem a likely team for them to do it against considering the Gunners have won their last six meetings against them, keeping a clean sheet in the last five. Arsenal’s defence was shambolic against Watford though so Villa will fancy their chances to at least score a couple and force Arsenal to get at them.
Newcastle United vs Brighton & Hove Albion | St. James Park | Sunday 2:30am
Our Aussie contingent travel north to Newcastle hoping to turn Brighton’s fortunes around considering they’re without a win since the opening weekend. Newcastle are only slightly worse off but have had to face Liverpool, Tottenham and Arsenal already so they’ll fancy their chances at home against a smaller side like Brighton.
Whilst Maty Ryan is firmly secured as the Seagulls first choice keeper, Aaron Mooy is yet to cement his spot in the starting lineup but has been solid with the minutes he’s gotten so far.