WEST BROM

Today
12:30
The Hawthorns

V

ARSENAL

West Brom fell to a rather unsurprising defeat at Goodison Park last weekend as Everton beat them 3-0, to resign The Baggies to back to back Premier League defeats for the first time in 2017.

This loss followed on from their shock defeat at Crystal Palace the weekend before to make it five wins, two draws, and four defeats in their last 11 outings in all competitions. In the Premier League they have won five, drawn two, and lost three of their last ten.

Two of these three defeats came away from home though, and at home they have won seven and lost two of their last nine Premier League matches. Admittedly they haven’t had the most difficult run in during this period, but it’s undeniably an impressive performance from a side currently enjoying their best ever Premier League season. They now reside in 8th position in the Premier League, seven points adrift of Everton but four points clear of Stoke below them.

Arsenal managed to regain some pride last weekend with their 5-0 demolition of non-league side Lincoln City in the FA Cup. It’s far from a good time for the Emirates faithful though. They are still reeling from their 10-2 humiliation at the hands of Bayern Munich, and they have won just three of their last eight games in all competitions.

The Premier League has seen them lose three of their last four matches, pushing them out of the top four and five points behind Liverpool in 4th. They do have two games in hand though, but Manchester United are in better form just a point behind them.

Away from home Arsenal have won just one of their last six league games, conceding a very disappointing 13 goals in the process. They have managed to score in all but one of their away games this season though, whilst West Brom have conceded in ten of their 14 home matches.

ARSENAL WIN 2-1

SUNDERLAND

Today
15:00
Stadium of Light

V

BURNLEY

Sunderland’s misery continued in unsurprising fashion last time out as they lost 2-0 at home to Manchester City, making it three defeats on the bounce and keeping them rock bottom of the Premier League. With their relegation rivals starting to pick up some points, this leaves The Black Cats six points from safety with 11 games to try and turn it around.

Their longer term form doesn’t look much better than the short term either. They have won one, drawn three, and lost eight of their last 11 games in all competitions, conceding 24 goals in the process.

Generally speaking they don’t tend to have too many issues finding the net themselves though. They have failed to score in their last three home games but those came against the likes of Spurs, Manchester City, and Southampton. Overall they have scored in eight of their last 12 home matches in the Premier League.

David Moyes will feel they have a good chance of picking up something here. They are facing a Burnley side who remain winless on the road this season, although this is potentially their best chances of breaking that duck.

Overall they have started to slip a bit too. The defeat to Liverpool last time out makes it six games without a win in all competitions, putting them 12th in the Premier League but a relatively comfortable seven points clear of the drop zone.

As previously mentioned, Burnley are winless on the road this season. They have drawn two and lost 12 of their trips away in the league and have kept just one clean sheet all season. They have shown signs of improvement at the other end of the pitch though, finding the net in each of their last seven games.

SUNDERLAND WIN 1-0

CRYSTAL PALACE

Today
15:00
Selhurst Park

V

WATFORD

The Sam Allardyce effect finally seems to be taking hold at Selhurst Park. Last time out we saw them claim their second consecutive victory in the Premier League for the first time since September as they surprisingly beat West Brom 2-0 at The Hawthorns.

This followed on from their win at home to relegation rivals Middlesbrough, leaving them with three wins from their last five outings in the Premier League and pushing them out of the bottom three. They now reside in 17th position with a one point lead over Hull.

The Eagles do have games against Chelsea, Southampton, Arsenal, Leicester, and Liverpool coming up after this game though, so they really need to go for the win in order to give themselves a boost ahead of such a tough run of fixtures.

Fortunately for the hosts Watford aren’t looking too great at the moment. They lost 4-3 to Southampton in their last match to make it three games without a victory.  They are now 13th in the Premier League, seven points clear of the drop zone but by no means out of danger just yet.

Away from Vicarage Road they really tend to struggle as well. They did manage an impressive 2-1 win over Arsenal at the end of January, but apart from that they haven’t won a game since October and have lost seven of their ten trips away since then.

The Hornets have failed to score in five of their last seven away days and are facing a newfound stalwart Palace defence who have managed to keep two clean sheets in a row. If Crystal Palace can keep their opposition at bay again on Saturday they have more than enough attacking threat to punish Watford at the other end, especially with the visitors conceding 20 goals in their last ten away matches.

CRYSTAL PALACE WIN 2-1

STOKE

Today
15:00
bet365 Stadium

V

CHELSEA

Stoke managed to show a lot of defensive steel in their last match as they held Manchester City off for the full 90 minutes to earn a point from a goalless draw. This excellent result makes it two wins, three draws, and two defeats in their last seven outings in the Premier League.

This recent run has allowed them to break into the top half of the Premier League table, despite their absolutely shocking start to the campaign. They also have a relatively favourable run in going to the end of the season, so they have a chance to progress even further up the table if they can start to win games consistently.

This is not one of those favourable games though. Chelsea progressed in the FA Cup on Monday as they knocked current holders Manchester United out, keeping them well on track for the double this season.

Every week that passes increases the chances of Chelsea winning the league. They are now ten points clear of 2nd placed Spurs, who have now lost Harry Kane to injury, and have just 11 games left to play. Eight wins from these 11 games would seal the title for them.

That figure certainly looks achievable for Chelsea. They have won a huge 19 of their last 22 matches in all competitions, and in the Premier League they have only lost once since Antonio Conte switched to a back three back in September.

A lot of these victories have been comfortable to say the least for them, and whilst they are a little more conservative on the road, they rarely look threatened in their pursuit of the three points. They have won four of their last 11 away days by more than a single goal margin, and that includes trips to Southampton, Manchester City, Spurs, Leicester, and Liverpool.

CHELSEA WIN 2-0 .

EVERTON

Today
15:00
Goodson Park

V

HULL

Everton bounced back quickly from their defeat at White Hart Lane earlier this month when they comfortably dispatched of West Brom at Goodison Park last weekend. The three points never looked in doubt as they strolled to a 3-0 win over the Baggies, putting them within touching distance of Manchester United in 6th position. The 6th placed side do have two games in hand though.

That victory does give The Toffees a seven point cushion over West Brom, so barring any catastrophes they can look forward to a top seven finish in the Premier League this season.

They have now won five of their last eight games in all competitions, but their home form in the Premier League paints them in a much better light. They have won five matches on the bounce there now and lost just once there all season. In the last five games they have scored a huge 18 goals and kept four clean sheets.

Hull won’t like looking at that run of form. The relegation threatened side did manage a crucial win at home to Swansea last weekend, to leave them just a point from safety in the Premier League, and their overall form of two wins, two draws, and two defeats in their last six outings doesn’t actually look that bad.

The problem lies in their away form, which is truly atrocious. They haven’t won away from home since the first game of the season, and 11 of their 13 trips away since then have ended in defeat. They have failed to score in eight of these as well, and haven’t managed more than one goal in a game since that win over Swansea in August.

Considering Everton have scored at least three goals in each of their last five home matches, I don’t see much hope for Hull here. The Toffees might have been thrown into disarray by Romelu Lukaku rejecting a new contract offer, but in all honesty I don’t expect his performances to drop. He scored again last weekend to take his tally to 19 Premier League goals for the season. 11 of these have come in his 13 home matches, so odds of 8/13 for him to score look perfect for our goalscorer predictions.

EVERTON WIN 2-1

WEST HAM

Today
15:00
London Stadium

V

LEICESTER

West Ham fell to a rather disappointing and unexpected defeat last weekend as a Joshua King hat trick guided an out of form Bournemouth to their first win in ten matches. This 3-2 defeat for The Hammers followed on from a defeat at home to Chelsea and leaves them winless in four games in all competitions.

Their overall form looks rather mediocre, but not unsalvageable. They have won three, drawn two, and lost three of their last eight games in the Premier League, with two of their three defeats coming against top four teams.

It’s undeniable that they have struggled to adapt to life in the London Stadium though. At home they have won just one of their last six games in all competitions and have conceded a huge 15 goals in this period. They have managed to net six times themselves, but they just seem to collapse at the back as soon as they concede.

Leicester are hitting the headlines for all the right reasons again. They went into Tuesday’s Champions League second leg against Sevilla 2-1 down on aggregate, but a Samir Nasri sending off and a Kasper Schmeichel penalty save aided them in an excellent 2-0 win that sends the Premier League champions through to the quarter finals.

This victory follows 3-1 wins over Hull and Liverpool in the Premier League, giving them three straight victories for the first time this season. This has pushed them up to 15th in the table, although they still only hold a three point lead over the relegation zone.

Defensively there are still issues to work out, they have conceded in each of their last seven matches. Away from home it’s a lot worse as well, with three draws and ten defeats making up their away results in the Premier League this season. They have kept just one clean sheet on the road, although their recent return to scoring form suggests that a turnaround could be on the cards.

LEICESTER WIN 1-0

 

BOURNEMOUTH

Today
17:30
Vitality Stadium

V

SWANSEA

Bournemouth surprisingly broke out of their winless streak last weekend with a thrilling 3-2 win at home to West Ham, ending a run of nine consecutive games without a win for The Cherries. Six of these matches ended in defeat for them as well, which has seen them drifting closer and closer to the Premier League relegation zone.

The win last weekend puts them to 14th in the table though, with a six point cushion on the bottom three and with some much needed confidence in their play. Their defence is still a glaring issue though.

The week before they beat West Ham they had put in a stellar second half defensive performance against Manchester United, despite being a man down. In all honesty they could have conceded four or five in the first half though, and the two goals conceded against West Ham show that their issues haven’t sorted themselves out.

Only one team has conceded more than them in the Premier League this season, and that team happens to be Swansea. This has all the makings of a high scoring thriller, as both teams look to boost their chances of survival this season.

Swansea fell to a disappointing defeat at Hull last weekend, but overall their form has dramatically improved since the hiring of Paul Clement as manager. They have won four and lost three of their last seven outings in the Premier League, and that run includes matches away from home against Liverpool, Manchester City, and Chelsea.

As previously mentioned, The Swans are another side with some terrible defensive problems. They have conceded a huge 61 league goals this season and have conceded an average of over two goals per game on the road. Bournemouth have scored nearly two goals a game at The Vitality Stadium, but have conceded 14 in their last six at home. Every one of these six matches have seen them concede at least two, whilst Swansea have conceded at least two goals in their last five away days and haven’t kept a clean sheet on the road since August.

Joshua King has been the standout performer for Bournemouth this season, and he added a hat-trick to his tally of goals last weekend, to make it 11 for the season. With the confidence he will have gained from that, plus Swansea’s awful defence, backing him to score anytime at 8/5 looks a good choice for our goalscorer predictions.

DRAW 2-2

MIDDLESBROUGH

19th March
12:00
Riverside Stadium

V

MANCHESTER UNITED

Middlesbrough were eliminated from the FA Cup last weekend as Manchester City came to the Riverside and beat them 2-0, and that apparently proved a step too far for the Middlesbrough board. Manager Aitor Karanka has since been sacked after three and a half years in charge, leaving assistant Steve Agnew to take control for this match.

That defeat made it three losses on the bounce for Boro, although their Premier League form looks a lot more bleak than that. They are winless in their last ten Premier League matches and have lost six of them, leaving them second from bottom in the table and three points from safety.

Their main issue is going forward, despite the high profile signing of Alvaro Negredo in the summer. They have failed to score in their last four matches and have scored just three goals in their last ten league matches. This leaves Middlesbrough with the worst attacking record in the Premier League, although they do have a better defensive record than any team outside the top six.

Manchester United hosted Rostov in midweek as they looked to progress in the Europa League, and they just about managed to do so as a Juan Mata tap in secured them a tight 2-1 aggregate win over the Russians. They were dominant in this match, but seemed to lack the cutting edge required to break through the Rostov defence. This could prove a problem against the organised Middlesbrough back.

That victory makes it seven wins, two draws, and one defeat from their last ten games in all competitions, and although they were knocked out of the FA Cup on Monday, they remain unbeaten in the Premier League since October.

Since then they have won nine and drawn eight of their 17 league matches, although surprisingly they often perform better on the road. The Red Devils have won five and drawn two of their last seven away days, keeping three clean sheets in the process.

UNITED WIN 2-0

TOTTENHAM

19th March
14:15
White Hart Lane

V

SOUTHAMPTON

Tottenham made it through to the FA Cup semi finals in style last weekend as they thrashed Millwall 6-0 at White Hart Lane, but the talking point of the day was an unfortunate ankle injury for star striker Harry Kane. He has damaged the ligaments he injured at the start of the season and could miss up to eight weeks of action, severely limiting Spurs’ already slim chances of catching Chelsea at the top of the Premier League.

The hosts remain in 2nd position in the Premier League though, but the ten point gap between them and the unstoppable Chelsea isn’t getting any smaller. They are only a point above 4th placed Liverpool as well, and both Arsenal and Manchester United have a game in hand and are only six and seven points adrift respectively. Spurs will have to cope without Kane as the race for the top four heats up.

Tottenham are in good shape though. They have won four of their last five games in all competitions and have scored an impressive 18 goals in the process. In the Premier League they have won nine of their last 12 matches and lost just once, and it gets even better at White Hart Lane. They they have won nine on the bounce, scoring 27 goals and conceding just five at the other end. They remain unbeaten at home in the league.

Southampton were out of action last weekend due to their early FA Cup exit, but the weekend before they secured the three points at Vicarage Road in a thrilling 4-3 match. This makes it two wins and four defeats from their last six games in all competitions.

In the Premier League they have won three and lost six of their last nine outings though and have only managed three wins from their last 11 on the road. This has left them in a disappointing 10th position in the table.

SPURS WIN 1-0

MANCHESTER CITY

19th March
16:30
Etihad Stadium

V

LIVERPOOL

Manchester City’s unbeaten streak came to a dramatic end in midweek when they visited Monaco, looking for a place in the Champions League quarter finals. They went into the tie 5-3 ahead on aggregate after a thrilling match at The Etihad, but a fearless Monaco pushed them hard in the first half and went into the break 2-0 up. The second half saw a significant and much needed improvement from the visiting Manchester City, and they deservedly pulled one back to lead the tie on aggregate. A 77th minute Bakayoko goal saw Monaco through on away goals though to send City crashing out of the Champions League.

Prior to that, Manchester City had won eight and drawn three of their last 11 games in all competitions, but now they face a tough hosting of Liverpool just a few days after their gruelling trip to Monaco.

In the Premier League the hosts have won four and drawn two of their last six games, but their home form leaves a lot to be desired. They have won four, drawn five, and lost one of their last ten home league games, leaving them 3rd in the table but ten points off leaders Chelsea.

The defence is where their issue lay in midweek, and in all honesty throughout the entire season. They have conceded in ten of their 13 home games in the Premier League this season, although they have scored in all but one of them as well.

Liverpool’s defence is an issue too. Their 2-1 win over Burnley last weekend did make it three wins from their last four matches in the Premier League, but they have conceded in eight of their last nine league games and have lost three of them. They are now 4th in the table, with both Arsenal and Manchester United below them having two games in hand.

Away from home Jurgen Klopp’s men are winless in four league matches, but they do have a good record against the top sides. They have beaten Arsenal twice, Spurs, Chelsea, Manchester City, and Everton this season and haven’t lost a single league game against a team from the top half of the table.

CITY WIN 2-1