The highlight games for this week’s action are EVERTON versus ARSENAL and TOTTENHAM versus MAN CITY. Our feature columnist, John Newsome previews these and all game week 22 matches as well as 1 rearranged Game Week 8 fixture with his unique and insightful commentary. You can view all previous analysis from John’s regular column here: English Premier League Predictions For Saturday.
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There are 10 Game Week-22 ties, plus an added rearranged Game Week-8 affair that takes place on the 8th of February 2023.
The Game Week-22 set of fixtures are the reverse of Game Week-7, however, if one remembers, all were postponed as a mark of respect for the sad passing of Queen Elizabeth the 2nd.
Fulham v Chelsea, Man City v Tottenham and Manchester United v Crystal Palace have completed their Game Week-7 affair, so all come up against each other, in the reverse fixture, pretty quickly.
The other 7 fixtures will have to find a window in the Calendar to be completed.
CHELSEA v FULHAM
20.00 in England
Friday Night Football at Stamford Bridge sees these two neighbours play just 3 weeks after the fixture at Craven Cottage.
Chelsea have paid around £90 Million for Mykhailo Mudryk in an 8-year deal!
There’s a reason for this that UEFA have now realised and are putting a ban on.
If Chelsea buy Mykhailo for £90 Million on a 4-year deal, then the payment is put on the accounts as £22.5 Million a year, however, if the contract is put as an 8 year, then its £11.25 Million a year, meaning the Blues have an extra £11.25 Million per annum to use to buy someone else.
UEFA have cottoned on to this and are changing its Financial Fair Play Rules.
A bit like closing the stable door once the horse has bolted.
Double M looks like a decent signing for the Blues and is rapid, giving Chelsea a different dynamic up front.
The Game Week-7 fixture between these two West London rivals at Craven Cottage on the 12th of January finished in a victory for the home team.
Chelsea come into this tie off the back of a defeat against Fulham, a victory against Crystal Palace at Stamford Bridge and a draw against Liverpool.
The Blues had the weekend off due to being knocked out of the FA Cup in the 3rd Round, so depending on which way one looks at that, it could be seen as a positive, allowing Graham to have more time to work on his tactics.
At Craven Cottage on the 12th of January, the pressure mounted on Mr Potter following the defeat against Fulham by a 2-1 away day score, as predicted in this EveryTip column.
After conceding a goal, scored by the ex-Blues star Will-I-An, Kalidou Koulibaly equalised just after the restart but then a moment of madness from the new boy Joao Felix saw Chelsea reduced to 10 men.
Joao was shown a straight Red Card for a challenge on Kenny Tete.
The Portuguese youngster is reportedly on £280,000 a week (a week!) for the short loan spell until the end of the season.
Now the lad has been missing for 3 games, with this being the final one of the 3.
The Blues faithful hope that Joao will realise the error of his ways and put in a performance when back in a Chelsea shirt.
Chelsea conceded a late goal to ultimately lose the West London Derby.
The Fulham winner being scored by Carlos Vinicius, 15 minutes after the sending-off.
The fixture against Crystal Palace produced a victory by a 1-0 scoreline, Kai Havertz with the solitary winning goal, midway through the 2nd-half.
The goalless draw against Liverpool gained Chelsea a well-deserved point, considering that the fixture was at Anfield.
That leaves the Blues in 10th place, with 29 points from 20 games played.
Fulham suffered back-to-back defeats by the same 1-0 scoreline last time out in the Premier League.
Tottenham gained the victory over Fulham at Craven Cottage before the FA Cup draw against Sunderland, meaning an extra game to be fitted in on the 7th of February.
That was following the defeat against Newcastle.
Fulham sit in 7th place with the same 31 points as Brighton but are a place below on goal difference.
The Cottagers (21) have played 2 games more than the Seagulls (19).
Betfred offer Chelsea at Odds On 4/7, the draw at 3/1 and 5/1 for Fulham to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 6/1 that Jorginho Scores Anytime and 6/4 that Chelsea Win To Nil.
EVERTON v ARSENAL
12.30 in England
The Mikel Arteta Derby.
Mr Arteta played for Everton back in the mid-noughties under David Moyes.
The Toffees finally pulled the plug on Frank Lampard’s bath time at the helm, with the ex-Burnley boss Sean Dyche coming into Goodison Park.
Christine isn’t happy that Frank is under the feet again and has pointed out in no uncertain terms, where the Dyson is.
It looked inevitable that Frank Lampard’s Everton were going to be renamed back as Everton.
The ex-Derby and Chelsea gaffer didn’t exactly pull up any trees on Merseyside, so the concrete was beckoning following the defeat against West Ham (2-0) last time out.
The Toffee faithful had seemed to be behind Frank and were more intent on venting their anger at the hierarchy.
John Newsome doesn’t want to go down that particular Cul-De-Sac as the Everton fans obviously have the right to feel angry, seeing their beloved Blues sitting in 19th place with the same 15 points as Southampton.
All of the Bottom 5 teams have completed 20 games.
Arsenal come into this fixture at Goodison Park, sitting proudly at the summit of the Premier League with 50 points from 19 fixtures played.
Before the FA Cup 4th Round tie against Man City (which City knocked Arsenal out), Mikel’s Young Guns gained a victory against Manchester United by a narrow 3-2 scoreline.
Eddie Nketiah equalised an earlier United strike, to take both teams in level at the break.
Bukayo Saka then scored a beautiful goal to give the home team a lead, however, Manchester United quickly restored the parity, scoring soon after.
When it appeared that the points would be shared, Eddie scored the winner in the 90th minute to give Arsenal all 3 points.
As mentioned, Man City inflicted the first defeat on Arsenal since the loss against Brighton in the Carabao Cup back in November.
Although City’s victory was an FA Cup tie, the significance could have far-reaching consequences on the 2 Premier League fixtures coming up firstly at the Emirates in mid-February and then at the Etihad at the end of April.
Both games have been scheduled as night matches so it’s hoped the Train companies are not on strike.
Mikel Arteta now knows that his team, although sitting at the summit, haven’t gained the victory over Pep Guardiola’s Blues.
If the same occurs in the Premier League, City could overtake Arsenal at the top of the table.
Man City are 5 points adrift of Arsenal, however, have played a game more.
There’s a long way to go yet but the fact that Arsenal suffered a defeat against Man City and were knocked out of the FA Cup could be the turning point in the season.
Added to that, Everton will have the new Manager bounce so this could prove a tough trip up to Merseyside.
At Goodison Park last season, it was Rafa Benitez who was still in charge of the Toffees, with Mikel Arteta in the fledgling stages of his career in the Arsenal hot seat.
Martin Odegaard scored just before the interval to give the away team a lead at the break.
Second-half goals from Richarlison and Demarai Gray stunned the Gunners to give Everton the victory by a 2-1 score.
Betfred offer Everton at 15/2, the draw at 4/1 and Odds On 1/3 for Arsenal to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 7/5 that Dominic Calvert-Lewin Scores Anytime and 23/20 that Eddie Nketiah Scores Anytime.
ASTON VILLA v LEICESTER
15.00 in England
Aston Villa gained a narrow victory over Southampton at St Mary’s, in the Premier League, before the FA Cup weekend.
Ollie Watkins scored the solitary winning goal, midway through the 2nd-half to give Unai’s Claret and Blues the away day victory.
Villa had been knocked out of the famous Cup competition by Stevenage (who?) so had the weekend off.
Aston Villa sit in 11th place with 28 points from 20 fixtures played.
Leicester did have a run out in the 4th Round and progressed following a victory against Walsall.
Last time out in the Premier League, the Foxes halted the 4 game-losing streak by gaining a point against Brighton at the King Power Stadium.
A goal in each half by Marc Albrighton and Harry Barnes earned a draw by a 2-2 score.
The Archbishop was happy.
At Villa Park in December 2021, Steven Gerrard’s Claret and Blues gained the victory over Brendan Rodgers’ Foxes by a 2-1 score.
Harvey Barnes (Leicester) and Ezri Konza (Aston Villa) scored in the 1st-half to take both teams in level at the break.
Ezri then scored a 2nd just after the restart and with no further goals, the home team held on for the win.
Betfred offer Aston Villa at 21/20, the draw at 5/2 and 13/5 for Leicester to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 6/5 that Jamie Vardy Scores Anytime and 19/10 that Ollie Watkins Scores Anytime.
BRENTFORD v SOUTHAMPTON
15.00 in England
Brentford remain unbeaten in the last 8 Premier League games which includes a victory against Man City.
Last time out before the FA Cup weekend, the Bees gained a point from a draw against Leeds United, with both teams unable to score.
The point gained, as it’s always a point gained not 2 points lost, leave Brentford in 8th place, with 30 points from 20 games played.
Brentford were knocked out of the FA Cup at the 3rd Round stage so have had the weekend off.
Southampton suffered a narrow defeat against Aston Villa last time out in the Premier League.
After a goalless 1st-half, Villa scored the solitary winning goal to inflict the defeat on the Saints by a 1-0 score.
Nathan Jones’ team have improved over the last few fixtures and progressed to the 5th Round of the FA Cup as well as being in the Semi-Final of the Carabao Cup.
However, despite the upturn in performances, Southampton are still at the foot of the table with 15 points from 20 fixtures completed.
There are 3 points separating the bottom 7 teams so anyone who puts a winning run together will pull clear of the relegation zone.
Southampton suffered a defeat in the 1st leg of the Semi-Final of the Carabao Cup against Newcastle and head to St James Park on Tuesday trailing, so the fate in that particular competition will be known before this trip to the GTech Stadium.
It was May 2022, towards the end of the campaign when the Bees last hosted the Saints.
Pontus Jansson, Yoane Wissa and Kristoffer Ajer scored the Brentford goals to give Thomas Frank’s team the victory over Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side by a 3-0 scoreline.
Betfred offer Brentford at slight Odds On 10/11, the draw at 13/5 and 3/1 for Southampton to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 7/5 that Ivan Toney Scores Anytime and 23/10 that James Ward-Prowse Scores Anytime.
BRIGHTON v BOURNEMOUTH
15.00 in England
Brighton are unbeaten in all competitions since the defeat against Arsenal on New Year’s Eve.
So 2023 is definitely the Year of The Seagull (up to now!)
Before the superb 4th Round FA Cup victory over Liverpool, knocking the holders out, Roberto De Zerbi’s men gained a point from a draw against Leicester at the King Power Stadium.
Kaoru Mitoma, who is fast becoming a South Coast Superstar opened the scoring against the Foxes, however, the home team scored twice and when it appeared a defeat was on the cards, Evan Ferguson scored the equaliser in the 87th minute to share the points from a 2-2 scoreline.
The Archbishop was happy.
Brighton sit in 6th place with 31 points, however, have only completed 19 games, not the 20 and 21 that some have played.
One of those ‘some’ are Tottenham who have 5 points more but have played 21 times.
When the Cherries last visited the Amex to take on the Seagulls, it was back in late December 2019, just before the Coronavirus ruined a few things and no one had used the word ‘Furlough’.
Brighton gained the victory by a 2-0 scoreline.
Alireza Jahanbakhsh and Aaron Mooy with the goals.
Not only did Alireza play in the recent World Cup for Iran against England and Wales but is also worth 56 points in Scrabble.
Betfred offer Brighton at slight Odds On 1/3, the draw at 4/1 and 8/1 for Bournemouth to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 12/5 that Alexis Mac Allister Scores Anytime and 11/10 that Brighton Win To Nil.
***Premier League Team of the Week***
GOALKEEPER- Nick Pope- Newcastle
RIGHT-BACK- Kieran Trippier- Newcastle
CENTRE-BACK- John Stones- Man City
CENTRE-BACK- Ethan Pinnock- Brentford
LEFT-BACK- Alex Moreno- Aston Villa
MIDFIELDER- Ben Pearson- Bournemouth
MIDFIELDER- Martin Odegaard- Arsenal
MIDFIELDER- Rico Lewis- Man City
FORWARD- Eddie Nketiah- Arsenal
FORWARD- Erling Haaland- Man City
FORWARD- Ivan Toney- Brentford
STAR MAN- Erling Haaland- Man City
MANCHESTER UNITED v CRYSTAL PALACE
15.00 in England
This is a fitting fixture to start the Erik Ten Hag rant, bearing in mind, it was the game at Selhurst Park on the 18th of January that set off a process of events leading to Manchester United suffering a defeat against Arsenal before the FA Cup 4th Round tie.
Against Palace, which was a rearranged Game Week-7 affair, for some reason, Erik the Red decided to play Casemiro, knowing that if the Brazilian received a Yellow Card then Cassie would miss the fixture against the Gunners.
That’s correct, Casemiro received the 5th Yellow Card of the season meaning a 1-game suspension.
This meant that Mr Ten Hag decided to include Scott McTominay in the starting lineup against Arsenal at the Emirates.
Why didn’t, Scott play against Crystal Palace instead of Casemiro and free the Brazilian up for the more crucial fixture against Arsenal?
If Casemiro plays against the Gunners, Bukayo Saka doesn’t score that goal.
The whole dynamic of both games would have been different.
Instead, Crystal Palace equalised from a late free-kick that not only Casemiro gave away but also received the inevitable Yellow Card and the subsequent suspension.
Manchester United have gained a point from a possible 6, that in theory should have been at least 4, if not 6.
In the tie at Selhurst Park, Bruno Fernandes scored in the 1st-half to give United a comfortable lead.
Palace equalised late on and Manchester United snatched a draw from the jaws of victory.
An hour before kick-off at the Emirates, the news surfaced that Scott McTominay was the boy to replace Casemiro.
Everyone who reads this EveryTip column knows John Newsome’s opinion of both Scott and Fred, so no need to go over old ground, however, Jose Mourinho, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Ralph Rangnick and now Erik Ten Hag, all know that Manchester United won’t win anything with Scott and Fred.
When the score was 1-0 to United at Selhurst Park, Erik sent on Scott and Fred.
Crystal Palace equalised whilst both were on the pitch.
When the score was 2-2 at the Emirates, Erik The Red sent on Fred, Scott McTominay was already on the pitch producing nothing.
Arsenal scored the winner whilst both were on the pitch.
Whilst not to single anyone out, as it is a collective, another point to make is Wout Weghorst started both games against Crystal Palace and Arsenal.
Wout is 6 foot 6 inches tall, or in new money, 1.97 metres.
However, United under the instructions of Erik Ten Hag, don’t play to that advantage or strength.
When a goal kick is given, David De Gea passes to Lisandro Martinez who passes to Raphael Varane who passes back to DDG.
Which ultimately led to pressure from the Gunners players (and from any other team watching!)
Why not kick it long for 6 foot 6 inch WW?
Why not knock it wide to Antony or Christian Eriksen, who could then cross it in for Wout to at least try and use his strengths?
On the day, Arsenal were the better team and deserved the victory by a 3-2 score but that was only because of the way ETH set up his White Devils.
United remain in 4th place, with the same 39 points as Newcastle but with a slightly inferior goal difference than the Magpies.
There was progression in the FA Cup with United comfortably getting the victory against Reading in the 4th Round.
Most might not see any significance in that result, however, the Championship club Reading are managed by the ex-United player, Paul Ince.
Thirty years ago, in the inaugural Premier League season, Paul was part of the Manchester United team that won the title.
Peter Schmeichel, Denis Irwin, Gary Pallister, Steve Bruce, Paul Parker, Paul Ince, Ryan Giggs, Lee Sharpe, Brian McClair, Mark Hughes and Eric Cantona.
Bryan Robson, Clayton Blackmore and Mike Phelan, with a few others thrown in such as the current Peterborough Manager Darren Ferguson.
One wonders who is Darren’s dad.
The good thing about the sentence ‘the current Peterborough Manager Darren Ferguson’ is that it is timeless and whenever anybody reads this over the next 20 years, it’s more than likely that Darren will be the Manager of the Posh, even if he’s sacked again.
The lad is like a boomerang, it’s Mr Ferguson’s 4th time as the boss of the London Rd outfit.
Most of the Red Devil faithful would love to see those boys back in a United shirt at Old Trafford.
By the way, a quick note regarding the FA Cup.
How can one have the dreaded VAR at some of the Cup games but not at others, which makes the competition a completely different experience?
Walsall v Leicester has no VAR, Accrington v Leeds has no VAR and Manchester United v Reading has VAR.
That just doesn’t make sense.
It’s supposedly because of the stadium where the tie is taking place.
United had a goal ruled out in the 1st-half against Reading due to the dreaded interfering and cancelling Marcus Rashford’s header because Wout Weghorst was deemed to be offside earlier in the move.
If that’s Walsall v Manchester United at the Bescot Stadium, also known as the Banks Stadium or the Poundland Bescot, after the local shop and brewery, the goal stands, regardless of whether Wout is offside or not.
Is that right?
Following the draw against United, Patrick’s Eagles, then gained another point against Newcastle, with both teams failing to find the back of the net (0-0).
Crystal Palace sit in 12th place with 24 points from 20 games played.
Betfred offer Manchester United at Odds On 2/5, the draw at 7/2 and 7/1 for Crystal Palace to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 4/1 that Marcus Rashford Scores First and 23/20 that Manchester United Win To Nil.
WOLVES v LIVERPOOL
15.00 in England
Wolves sit in 17th place, with 17 points from 20 games played, the same as Bournemouth who are in the final relegation spot.
Man City inflicted a defeat on Wolves by a 3-0 scoreline last time out with the Gold and Blacks unable to cope with That Man Erling.
Having been knocked out of the FA Cup in the 3rd Round, coincidentally by today’s opponents, Julen Lopetegui had a free weekend to drill his players for this game against Liverpool.
Jurgen’s Reds come into this fixture having been knocked out of the FA Cup on Sunday, with Brighton inflicting the defeat on the current holders of that particular trophy.
Liverpool haven’t gained a Premier League victory this year, with the game against Chelsea at Anfield before the FA Cup weekend, producing a point from a draw by a 0-0 score.
The new recruit Coady Gakpo has started all 5 games since signing but hasn’t scored yet which is becoming a concern for the Anfield Rappers.
In this game at Molineux, Cody might just get a rest with Darwin Nunez coming back into the starting eleven.
Liverpool sit in 9th place with the same 29 points as Chelsea but have only completed 19 fixtures.
At Molineux last season, a single Divock Origi goal in the 93rd minute was enough to give Liverpool the away day victory over Wolves by a 1-0 scoreline.
Betfred offer Wolves at 10/3, the draw at 11/4 and slight Odds On 5/6 for Liverpool to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 14/5 that Mo Salah Scores First and 21/10 that Liverpool Win To Nil.
NEWCASTLE v WEST HAM
Newcastle are not only unbeaten in 15 Premier League fixtures but have not conceded a goal in the last 6 of those games.
Nick Pope has not conceded a goal in the last 10 fixtures in all competitions.
Newcastle were dumped out of the FA Cup in the 3rd Round but Nick wasn’t in goal against Sheffield Wednesday and it was Martin Dubravka who conceded the goals.
That’s 900 minutes without the opposition notching against Mr Pope, maybe it’s Devine Intervention that’s helping the clean sheets.
It’s quite conceivable that another shutout will occur today.
Newcastle remain in 3rd place in the Premier League table, with the same 39 points as Manchester United but above the Red Devils on goal difference.
The ex-Toffee Striker Anthony Gordon has arrived at St James Park with Newcastle paying around £45 Million to Everton for the lad’s services.
West Ham halted the losing streak last time out, gaining a victory over Everton by a 2-0 scoreline, Jarrod Bowen with both goals before the half-time cup of tea.
That was the first Premier League victory since the 24th of October 2022, with 6 losses and 1 draw from 7 games played.
West Ham sit in 16th place with the same 18 points as Leeds United and Leicester.
The Hammers and the Foxes have played a game more (20) than the Whites (19).
When West Ham ventured the long way North to Newcastle in the opening fixture of the 2021/22 campaign, it was the away team that gained the victory by a 4-2 score.
Callum Wilson opened the scoring for the Magpies with Aaron Cresswell quickly equalising for the Hammers.
Jacob Murphy then scored for Newcastle to give the home team a lead at the break.
Said Benrahme, Tomas Soucek and Michail Antonio all scored in the 2nd-half to give David Moyes Boys the victory over Steve Bruce’s Black and Whites.
Betfred offer Newcastle at Odds On 8/13, the draw at 11/4 and 5/1 for West Ham to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 9/4 that Alexander Isak Scores Anytime and slight Odds On 4/5 that there are Under 2.5 Goals.
NOTTINGHAM FOREST v LEEDS UNITED
14.00 in England
This legendary fixture evokes memories of the great man Brian Clough’s 44-day tenure as Manager of Leeds United back in 1974.
Yes, 44 days!
After getting the sack at Elland Rd, Nottingham Forest came calling and the rest as one says, is history.
Nottingham Forest are unbeaten from the last 4 Premier League fixtures, with 2 wins and 2 draws.
The latest game against Bournemouth produced a point from a draw by a 1-1 score, with Sam Surridge scoring in the 88th minute to equalise an earlier Cherries goal.
The Tricky Trees were knocked out of the FA Cup in the 3rd Round but are still in the Carabao Cup, with the 2nd leg of the Semi-Final against Manchester United taking place on Wednesday before the visit from Leeds.
Unfortunately, the 1st leg of that particular competition saw Nottingham Forest suffer a home defeat by a 3-0 scoreline, making the trip to Old Trafford, virtually impossible to overturn.
Forest sit in 13th place with 21 points from 20 fixtures completed.
Leeds United head to the City Ground off the back of a goalless draw against Brentford before the FA Cup 4th Round where Jesse Marsch’s Whites progressed following a victory over Accrington Stanley (who are they?).
Leeds haven’t gained a Premier League victory since the fixture against Bournemouth on Bonfire Night back in November 2022.
A record of 3 losses and 3 draws in the 6 fixtures since the fireworks against the Cherries.
Some of the West Yorkshire puddings are still trying to write their names with the sparklers.
S, T, E, then forget the rest.
The Whites sit in 15th place, in between Leicester and West Ham, all with 18 points, however, have only played 19 times, not the 20 that the other two have.
Marching On Together.
It was February 2020 that these two last met at the City Ground, however, that was a Championship affair where Forest gained the victory by a 2-0 score.
Sammy Ameobi and Tyler Walker with the goals.
Tyler is the son of the legendary Des Walker.
‘You’ll never beat Des Walker!’
Betfred offer Nottingham Forest at 6/4, the draw at 23/10 and 6/4 for Leeds United to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 15/8 that Patrick Bamford Scores Anytime and that 9/4 that a Penalty Is Awarded.
TOTTENHAM v MAN CITY
16.30 in England
Tottenham and Man City will have played twice since the reverse fixture at the Etihad on the 19th of January.
Tottenham have gained a victory against Fulham in the Premier League and Preston in the FA Cup to progress to the 5th Round.
Man City have inflicted a defeat on Wolves and knocked Arsenal out of the FA Cup.
Against the Gold and Blacks, Erling Haaland scored his 4th hat-trick of the campaign and his 25th goal of the season, from 19 Premier League games.
Man City have played 20 games but Erling missed the fixture against Leicester at the end of October due to injury.
Man City got the points against Wolves from a victory by a 3-0 scoreline, as predicted in this EveryTip column, added to that, John Newsome offered up a tip that Erling would score a hat-trick, so it’s hoped some would have won a few bob to help pay the Gas Bill.
These two have completed their Game Week-7 affair with Man City gaining the victory over Tottenham by a 4-2 scoreline.
If one remembers, goals from Dejan Kulusevski and Emerson Royal gave Spurs a surprise half-time lead.
However, it was City that took control in the 2nd-half, with Julian Alvarez, Erling Haaland and a double from Riyad Mahrez giving Pep’s High Flying Blues the away day points.
Man City remain in 2nd place with 45 points from the 20 played, 5 points adrift of Arsenal, however, the Gunners have played a game less.
Nuno Espírito Santo was in charge of Tottenham for the opening game of the 2021/22 Premier League campaign at the Chas and Dave Memorial Stadium, where Spurs gained the victory over Man City by a 1-0 scoreline.
Betfred offer Tottenham at 3/1, the draw at 3/1 and slight Odds On 4/6 for Man City to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 7/5 that Harry Kane Scores Anytime and Evens 1/1 that Erling Haaland Scores Anytime.
MANCHESTER UNITED v LEEDS UNITED
20.00 in England
Manchester United will have played twice against Nottingham Forest in the Semi-Final of the Carabao Cup, a game against Reading in the FA Cup and Crystal Palace in the Premier League since the defeat against Arsenal and before this visit of Leeds United.
The 1st-leg of the Carabao Cup produced a comfortable victory by a 3-0 scoreline with the 2nd-leg at Old Trafford taking place on Wednesday night, so although this column will be published before then it could be easily assumed that United are in the Final at Wembley at the end of February.
The FA Cup produced a victory over Reading and progression to the 5th Round.
Obviously, the Premier League fixture against Crystal Palace hasn’t occurred yet but with the form of both teams at the moment, it does favour a United victory.
Leeds United face Nottingham Forest on Sunday, before this trip across the M62.
A few of the West Yorkshire puddings are enquiring as to whether a passport is needed to cross the Pennines.
Marsching On Together.
In last season’s encounter at Old Trafford, Manchester United were under the guidance of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Leeds United had Marcelo Bielsa.
The home team gained the easy victory by a 5-1 scoreline.
The goals went in as follows,
30’ Bruno Fernandes (Manchester United)
49’ Luke Ayling (Leeds United)
52’ Mason Greenwood (Manchester United)
54’ Bruno Fernandes (Manchester United)
60’ Bruno Fernandes (Manchester United)
68’ Fred (Manchester United)
Full-time Fish and Chips.
Betfred offer Manchester United at Odds On 2/5, the draw at 7/2 and 5/1 for Leeds United to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 4/1 that Marcus Rashford Scores First and 23/20 that Manchester United Win To Nil.
Saturday 10th January 1998
WEST HAM v BARNSLEY
15.00 in England
There’s usually a list of the clubs that were in the Bottom 6 of the Premier League table each week back in the 1997/98 campaign.
At the turn of the 97/98 year, this was the position of the Top 6 teams.
1-Manchester United 49 pts (plus+35 goals)
2-Chelsea 42 pts (plus+27 goals)
3-Blackburn 41 pts (plus+15 goals)
4-Liverpool 40 pts (plus+19 goals)
5-Arsenal 37 pts (plus+13 goals)
6-Derby 35 pts (plus+8 goals)
If one is not sure of the history of that specific season, after looking at the Top 6 teams, if a question is asked,
‘Who won the 1997/98 Premier League?’
Would most say Manchester United?
However, it was in fact Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal who overturned a 12-point deficit to Sir Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United and lifted the Trophy in May 1998.
It’s also worth noting that Blackburn are now in the Championship and Derby County along with Barnsley are currently in League One or Division Three in old money.
After the final fixture of 1997, where the Super Reds had gained a victory over Derby at Oakwell, it was a week off from the Premier League and a 3rd Round FA Cup tie against Bolton at home.
The Tykes inflicted a defeat on the Trotters by a 1-0 score, (Neil Redfearn with the goal) to set up a scintillating 4th Round fixture against Tottenham at White Hart Lane.
More on that in a couple of weeks.
Now it was back to the day job and a Premier League encounter at Upton Park or to give West Ham’s old stadium the correct name, The Boleyn Ground.
Not to try and give a History lesson but Anne Boleyn who is obviously associated in some way with the Boleyn Ground was one of the 6 wives of Henry the 8th.
The poor girl was the 2nd of Henry’s 6 and unfortunately had her head chopped off.
For Northern girls and boys, a trip down to London is always a bit nervy, especially in the 1980s and 90s and that cold January day back in 1998 was no exception.
Green St, where Upton Park is located, is also the name of a Football Hooligan film.
Nevertheless, it was an early start for Danny Wilson’s Red and White Army and armed with the Egg Mayonnaise sandwiches and bottles of Coca-Cola, the girls and boys set off to London Town.
Obviously, the Coca-Cola was doctored as mentioned in previous columns.
Let’s just say Mr Smirnoff was included in the trip to London.
Whilst Barnsley were entertaining Bolton in the 3rd Round of the FA Cup, West Ham were hosting the Non-League team, Emley FC who hale from a little village of the same name on the outskirts of Barnsley and at the time were managed by the Oakwell legend that is Ronnie Glavin.
Emley is also home to the famous Emley Moor Mast that helps the good folk of the North watch their telly’s.
One of John Newsome’s mates, Mark Wilson, played for Emley and although named as a substitute by Mr Glavin, came on after 6 minutes due to an early injury, so played most of the game.
In a tight affair between a Premier League side managed by Harry Redknapp and a team in the Northern Premier League, 7 tiers below, the Hammers gained a narrow victory by a 2-1 score.
Frank Lampard and John Hartson with the goals.
Paul David with the Emley goal.
Coincidentally, Frank and John scored the Hammers’ goals at Oakwell in the season opener, when West Ham inflicted a defeat on Barnsley by the same 2-1 scoreline.
There was another Oakwell legend playing for Emley at Upton Park in the FA Cup, him being Ian Banks, who was almost 37 years old at the time but still matched Frank Lampard in the middle of the park.
All the best Ronnie Glavin and Ian Banks.
Against Barnsley in the Premier League, Harry Redknapp sent out the following Bubbles,
Craig Forrest, Steve Potts, Rio Ferdinand, Ian Pearce, David Unsworth, Eyal Berkovic, Andy Impey, Frank Lampard, Stan Lazaridis, Samassi Abou and John Hartson.
John Moncur for Andy Impey 31st Minute
Paulo Alves for Eyal Berkovic 77th Minute
Danny Wilson gave starts to the following legends,
Dave Watson, Nicky Eaden, Matty Appleby, Darren Barnard, Ales Krizan, Chris Morgan, Neil Redfearn, Darren Sheridan, Eric Tinkler, Georgi Hristov and Ashley Ward.
Peter Markstedt for Matty Appleby 31st Minute
John Hendrie for Georgi Hristov 73rd Minute
Clint Marcelle for Ales Krizan 73rd Minute
The 1997/98 Game Week-22 encounter at the Boleyn Ground saw another footballing lesson handed out to the (not so) Super Reds, with the home team gaining the victory by a 6-0 score and doing the Double over Barnsley, one of six teams to get the home and away wins over the Premier League campaign.
Frank Lampard scored (again!) after 9 minutes with Samassi Abou adding a 2nd on the half-hour mark to give the home team a comfortable lead at the break and make the half-time pie hard to swallow for the Red and White Army, however, one was still eaten.
Samassi scored his 2nd and West Ham’s 3rd just after the restart, with John Moncur, John Hartson (again!) and Stan Lazaridis rounding off the scoring to give West Ham the easy victory.
John Newsome turned to the Russian guy and Coke for the arduous journey back up the M1 on the official supporters’ coach, with one of the faithful commenting,
‘Could do with something stronger than Coca-cola lad, after that performance!’
Little did the older guy know that Mr Smirnoff was on hand to take away the hurting.
On the journey home a story sprang to mind about a trip to the Nou Camp in Barcelona a few years back.
When aged 18, the Aussie’ mate Andy and John went on holiday to Lloret de Mar, on the Costa Brava in Spain.
The two were young and it was the first holiday without one’s parents.
Whilst there, the hotel ran a coach trip to one of the Barcelona’s games in La Liga.
It was Sunday the 20th of September 1987 and Barcelona were playing Valencia.
At the time Barcelona were managed by Terry Venables, who got the nickname ‘El Tel’ whilst he was out in Spain.
El Tel had brought Gary Lineker, Steve Archibald and Mark Hughes to the Nou Camp.
Mr Lineker was a success at Barcelona and stayed 3 seasons but Mark Hughes failed to settle and was loaned to Bayern Munich after the 1986/87 season, then returned to Manchester United.
When the loveable OzScot (just a Scot at the time) and John went to the Nou Camp, ‘El Tel’ was under pressure.
Gary Lineker played the full 90 minutes but couldn’t score past the Valencia goalkeeper Antonio Garcia.
The Scottish Striker Steve Archibald had been at Barcelona but had been edged out due to ‘foreign’ player restrictions when Mr Lineker and Mr Hughes signed.
In the Valencia team was the ex-Watford Manager Quique Sánchez Flores.
After about an hour’s coach ride, the Barnsley Boys arrived at the Nou Camp or Camp Nou as some might say and it was spectacular.
What amazed the two of us at the time, bearing in mind that this was 1987, is right next to the Nou Camp there’s a 50,000-seater stadium in which the reserves played.
There were almost 100,000 fans that day and the Camp Nou felt half empty as was the size of the place.
The future Kylie and this EveryTip contributor were up in the ‘cheap seats’ and the pitch seemed miles away.
There wasn’t a roof back then, however, one didn’t have to worry about the rain, it was a scorching day.
In 1987, there had only been a few English grounds visited.
Oakwell where Barnsley FC play, Hillsborough, Bramall Lane, Elland Rd, Ayrsome Park and Anfield while watching Barnsley and a couple of England Under-15 games at Old Trafford and Wembley.
The loveable Braveheart and his dad ‘Big Ernie’ had taken John Newsome to a Glasgow Rangers game at Ibrox too.
The Nou Camp was amazing.
Barcelona had a blonde-haired German Midfielder called Bernd Schuster who played and managed the rivals Real Madrid.
Valencia were under the guidance of the legendary Spanish International, Alfredo Di Stefano, who was actually Argentinian and played for the ‘Blue and Whites’ before settling in Spain and eventually getting a few runouts for the Spanish National Team.
Valencia inflicted a defeat on Barcelona that late September Sunday afternoon by a 1-0 score and the next day ‘El Tel’ was sacked as Manager, down the concrete and replaced by Luis Aragones, who later managed the Spanish team to the European Championship in 2008.
It was a fantastic experience, not for Mr Venables obviously!
However, Braveheart and JB had a great day out.
Back in Barnsley, after the 4-hour coach journey from Upton Park, a decision had to be made.
A few liveners in the boozer, a dance with the opposition in Japanese Whispers and a Kay Bab or straight back home to watch Barnsley get mauled (again) on Match of the Day?
John Newsome chose Option A!
It was then a Sunday with the new Youth, changing nappies (well getting her Grandma to do that!) and the Sunday dinner.
The good old days, however, it was another defeat for Barnsley, leaving the Reds at the foot of the Premier League table.
15-Everton 23 pts (minus-9 goals)
16-Coventry 23 pts (minus-10 goals)
17-Crystal Palace 23 pts (minus-10 goals)
18-Bolton 22 pts (minus-14 goals)
19-Tottenham 20 pts (minus-20 goals)
20-Barnsley 18 pts (minus-38 goals)
Home Win 6-0
The top of the Scottish Premier League table remains the same following the weekend’s results.
Celtic gained an easy victory over Dundee United (who?) on Sunday, whilst the arch-Glasgow rivals, Rangers inflicted a defeat on St Johnstone (who?) the day before.
It’s important to state that it was Dundee United, not Dundee!
The Green and White Hoops sit at the summit of the Pub League with 64 points, 9 more that the Teddy Bears who remain in 2nd with 55 points.
A couple of weeks ago, it was mentioned in this column that the Scottish Pub Cup taking place at Hampden Park between the Old Firm, Celtic and Rangers, kicks off at 19.45 in Scotland.
However, John Newsome wishes to apologise as the Scottish Cup Final on the 26th of February 2022, starts at 15.00 in Scotland, which is the same day as the Carabao Cup Final at Wembley.
There’s no confirmed start time for the game at Wembley.
This means that the loveable OzScot over in Melbourne will have to set his alarm for 02.00 in the morning to get up and put the Mel Gibson war paint on.
The lad will be spinning around all day if Rangers get the surprise victory and their hands on the prestigious Pub Cup.