The highlight games for the weekend’s action are ARSENAL versus WOLVES and CHELSEA versus BRIGHTON. Our feature columnist, John Newsome previews these and all game week 14 matches 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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ARSENAL v WOLVES
15.00 in England
Arsenal jumped to the summit of the Premier League after the weekend’s results with a last-gasp Kai Havertz goal giving the Gunners the victory over the Bees by a 1-0 scoreline.
Mikel Arteta and his Young Guns had seen Man City and Liverpool play out a score draw earlier on in the day that meant if Arsenal could get the away day win against Brentford then they would finish the weekend in first place.
Aaron Ramsdale was back in the team but as mentioned last week, it was purely due to David Raya being ineligible to play against his parent club, so it’s more than likely that David will be back between the sticks for this game against Wolves.
After saying that, it’s time Aaron starts looking for a new club as regardless of whether Mikel thinks he’s a decent stopper or not, the situation is no good for anyone.
Arsenal host Lens on Wednesday in Match-Day 5 of the Champions League Group Stage.
Wolves suffered a defeat on Monday Night Football away at Craven Cottage against Fulham, with 3 penalties awarded in the game.
Gary O’Neil’s Gold and Blacks have had 2 dubious penalties awarded against them in fixtures against Sheffield United and Newcastle but on Monday, Gary’s men had 2 penalties awarded against them in the same game, which both could be considered harsh.
That said, Wolves did get their own penalty awarded.
After the game, the on-field referee Michael Salisbury admitted that the first penalty awarded to Fulham was incorrect, which does appear strange as it was Michael who awarded it.
It appears that the game is now being refereed by the dreaded VAR and the on-field referee is just following orders.
Both of Fulham’s spot-kicks were dubious, to say the least and on the second occasion, Michael was sent to the pitch-side monitor and advised to give a penalty.
The first one awarded came straight from Mr Salisbury who then admitted he’d got that wrong.
As for the game, Matheus Cunha and Hwang-Hee Chan scored the Gold and Blacks goals, both to equalise an earlier Fulham notch but the 3rd penalty award of the match, given to Fulham, ultimately saw Wolves suffer a defeat by a narrow 3-2 scoreline.
Wolves sit in 12th place with the same 15 points as Crystal Palace and Monday Night’s opponents Fulham.
This is one of the iconic fixtures of the football calendar with Wolves heading to the Emirates to take on Arsenal.
In last season’s fixture, this was the final game of the campaign with Mikel’s Young Guns gaining an easy victory over, well it’s fair to say, a flip-flop-wearing set of Julen’s Gold and Blacks.
Granit Xhaka scored twice with Bukayo Saka adding a 3rd before the half-time whistle.
Gabriel Jesus and Jakub Kiwior rounded off the rout in the 2nd-half to seal the victory by a 5-0 scoreline.
Arsenal were already 9 points ahead of Manchester United in 3rd and 8 points adrift of Man City at the top so Arsenal were always set to finish 2nd.
With City’s subsequent defeat in the final fixture, the Gunners finished the season 5 points adrift of Pep’s High Flying Blues but still 9 points ahead of Erik’s Ten Bobs in 3rd.
Wolves ended the campaign in 13th place but eventually Julen Lopetegui decided the Black Country wasn’t for him and headed back to Spain before the start of this 2023/24 season.
Betfred offer Arsenal at Odds On 2/7, the draw at 9/2 and 9/1 for Wolves to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 2/1 that Martin Odegaard Scores Anytime and Evens 1/1 that Arsenal Win To Nil.
BRENTFORD v LUTON
15.00 in England
Brentford have now suffered back-to-back defeats following Saturday’s game against Arsenal and the fixture against Liverpool prior to the International Break.
Thomas’s Bees could consider themselves unlucky against Mikel’s Young Guns with just a single goal scored in the 89th minute being the difference between the two clubs, with Arsenal getting the victory by a 1-0 scoreline.
That leaves Brentford in 11th place with the same 16 points as Chelsea from the 13 games played.
That’s now a third of the season gone already.
Luton finally got a Premier League victory in front of the faithful Hatters fans last Saturday with goals from Teden Mengi and Jacob Brown enough to gain all 3 points against Crystal Palace by a 2-1 scoreline.
Palace had equalised Teden’s opener.
Rob Edwards’ men had jumped out of the relegation zone during the International Break without playing because of Everton’s points deduction.
The victory on Saturday keeps Luton in 17th place with 9 points from 13 games completed.
There’s now a 4-point gap between 17th and 18th which Rob will want to widen in the current weeks.
If Luton finish the campaign in 17th, the Hatters faithful will be over the moon, to coin an old footballing phrase.
It was January 2021 when Brentford last hosted Luton, however, that was a Championship fixture with the Bees stinging the Hatters and gaining a home victory by a 1-0 scoreline.
Samman Ghoddos with the solitary winning goal.
The game took place at the new GTech Stadium but unfortunately, there weren’t any fans due to the Coronavirus situation.
Now all will be able to watch, with the Cherry being that this fixture is a Premier League affair.
There was a fixture back in November 2019 that took place at the old Griffin Rd ground which saw Brentford gain a victory over Luton by a 7 (Seven) 0 score.
Betfred offer Brentford at Odds On 4/9, the draw at 10/3 and 6/1 for Luton to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 6/5 that Bryan Mbeumo Scores Anytime and 11/4 that Carlton Morris Scores Anytime.
BURNLEY v SHEFFIELD UNITED
15.00 in England
What can be said regarding Burnley, other than it was another defeat on Saturday, this time against West Ham at Turf Moor by a 2-1 score.
Jay Rodriguez did convert a penalty to put Burnley in front, however, the Hammers then scored twice to inflict the defeat on the home team.
That’s 11 defeats from the 13 games played, with a win and a draw from the other two which leaves Vincent Kompany’s Claret and Blues at the foot of the table with 4 points.
Sheffield United head to Turf Moor sitting in the final relegation place with 5 points from the opening 13 fixtures following Saturday’s defeat against Bournemouth at Bramall Lane.
Ollie McBurnie did score a goal for the home team, however, the Cherries had scored 3 by then and inflicted the defeat by a 3-1 away day scoreline.
The Blades have a similar record to today’s hosts with 10 defeats, 1 win and 2 draws, so this game could be described as the ‘El Rubbisho’ Derby.
James from Swinton, nowhere near Bramall Lane was distraught after the loss and headed straight into the Steel City for a Night out in Sheffield and a Gallon of Magnet.
Unfortunately, the Little Blunt is not sure what a ‘gallon is’ and told his mates (mate!) that he was only having 8 pints and not a gallon.
The lad rounded off the night with a Chinese takeaway, not a Greasy Chip Butty and was in bed before Match of the Day started, not wanting to watch his beloved team lose again on the telly.
Burnley gained a victory over Sheffield United in last season’s encounter at Turf Moor, with a couple of goals from Joey Gudmundsson giving Vincent Kompany’s Clarets the points by a 2-0 scoreline.
Both the goals came eventually after Burnley had worn down the 10 men of Sheffield United due to the Red Card received by the Goalkeeper Wes Fotheringham in the 17th minute.
The fixture was a Championship affair with both teams eventually being promoted to the Promised Land.
Betfred offer Burnley at slight Odds On 5/6, the draw at 5/2 and 16/5 for Sheffield United to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 2/1 that Jay Rodriguez Scores Anytime and slight Odds On 5/6 that there are Under 2.5 Goals.
NOTTINGHAM FOREST v EVERTON
17.30 in England
Nottingham Forest suffered a defeat on Saturday against Brighton by the same 3-2 scoreline that occurred against West Ham in the previous game.
That’s the 3rd loss by the same 3-2 score out of the 13 fixtures played, so at least the Tricky Trees are going down fighting.
Anthony Elanga and Morgan Gibbs-White scored the Forest goals either side of Brighton’s 3, who also had a man sent off when the score was 3-1 in their favour resulting in a penalty which Morgan converted.
Although Forest had the remaining 20 minutes against 10 Men, Steve Cooper’s Tricky Trees couldn’t take advantage and ran out of time, eventually suffering another defeat.
That leaves Nottingham Forest in 15th place with 13 points from the 13 games completed, which those good at Math will know equates to a point a game.
If Forest, or for that matter any team, gained a point a game throughout the season, 38 points would probably be enough to avoid relegation.
Birmingham, in 2011, were the last team to be relegated with 38 points or more, with the Blues actually having 39 points from 38 games, however, not enough to prevent the drop.
Everton are not happy at the moment with the deduction of 10 points that leaves Sean Dyche’s Toffees in 19th place with 4 points from 13 fixtures completed.
There weren’t any points added to that following the Game Week-13 affair against Manchester United that saw Everton suffer a defeat at Goodison Park by a 3-0 score.
Regardless of the points deduction and the distraction from the disgruntled faithful, United were always likely to gain a victory as at the moment, Erik Ten Hag’s team are flat-track bullies who can beat those who are struggling but struggle themselves to get a victory over the ones above them.
All Everton can do is try and get back to the form they had before the International Break which produced a couple of wins and try to recoup some of those missing 10 points.
Last season’s encounter at the City Ground saw both teams share the points from a draw by a 2-2 score.
The Archbishop was happy.
Demarai Gray and Abdoulaye Doucoure scored the Toffees goals with Brennan Johnson replying to leave Forest trailing at the break.
Brennan then scored his and Forest’s 2nd midway through the 2nd-half to give both teams a point apiece.
Betfred offer Nottingham Forest at 7/4, the draw at 9/4 and 13/8 for Everton to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 13/2 that Anthony Elanga Scores First and 3/1 that Nottingham Forest Score in Both Halves.
NEWCASTLE v MANCHESTER UNITED
20.00 in England
Note the start time, which is brilliant for the single girls and boys who are not forced to watch Strictly Come Sewing On A Pottery Stool by the ball and chain.
The Manchester Stick Thrower who has requested his name be changed to Ball Thrower instead of Stick will have to do all sorts of grovelling to be able to watch this Saturday Night Football.
There is even the absurd possibility that MBT will have to wait until Match Of The Day later on when the lovely wife has fallen asleep.
Newcastle gained a brilliant result against Chelsea on Saturday at St James Park with the Magpies inflicting a defeat on the Blues by a 4-1 scoreline.
Goals from Alexander Isak, Jamaal Lascelles, Joelinton and Anthony Gordon gave Eddies Black and Whites a brilliant win, however, not to pour cold water on the result, Chelsea were rubbish and some of the defending was a sight to behold.
Even the brilliant Thiago Silva had a nightmare performance plus Reece James was shown a Red Card midway through the 2nd-half.
That said, Newcastle had already scored 3 times before Reece was given an early bath.
After the disastrous performance against Bournemouth before the International Break, it was good for the Toon Army to see their idols get back on track.
Newcastle sit in 7th place with 23 points, a place and a point behind today’s opponents meaning the winners will finish the weekend above the loser.
Manchester United gained a professional victory over Everton at Goodison Park on Sunday by a 3-0 away day score.
Alejandro Garnacho scored a brilliant overhead kick in the 3rd-minute that set off debates about whether the kick was the best ever.
Wayne Rooney scored a similar one against Man City a few years ago and others have matched the goal, however, in John Newsome’s opinion, the Greatest Overhead Kick Goal was scored by Trevor Sinclair for Queens Park Rangers against Barnsley at Loftus Rd, in January 1997.
John was in attendance and witnessed the goal live and still has the ticket stub.
Marcus Rashford converted a penalty early in the 2nd-half with Anthony Martial adding a 3rd late on to give United the comfortable victory over a poor set of Toffees still moaning about the 10-point deduction.
It’s been mentioned in this column that Manchester United are Flat-Track Bullies which basically means, Erik’s Red Devils will beat teams below them but will struggle against the teams above them.
Sitting 6th, there are only 5 teams above United, however, today’s game against Newcastle, especially being away, will see if that saying is true as John Newsome is of the opinion that Manchester United are not of the level of Arsenal, Man City, Liverpool, Aston Villa, Tottenham and Newcastle.
There was a particular brilliant individual performance by a young United player called Kobbie Mainoo, who is just 18 and literally ran the show at Goodison Park.
That said, Everton were poor so today’s fixture should provide a stiffer test for Kobbie but if he matches the performance from Sunday, United have a chance of an away day win.
Both play in the midweek Champions League Group Stage, with Newcastle facing Paris Saint-Germain in France and Manchester United heading a bit further, over to Turkey to face Galatasaray, so a European hangover is potentially on the cards for both teams.
If one remembers Manchester United inflicted a defeat on Newcastle in the Carabao Cup back in February by a 2-0 score.
Just over a month later, Newcastle gained revenge by getting a victory at St James Park by the same 2-0 scoreline.
Joe Willock and Callum Wilson with the 2nd-half goals.
The two have already met this season in the Carabao Cup with Newcastle progressing.
The team sheet will be the deciding factor in the result of this Saturday Night Football.
Betfred offer Newcastle at Odds On 10/11, the draw at 13/5 and 11/4 for Manchester United to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 8/5 that Anthony Gordon Scores Anytime and Odds On 1/2 that Newcastle Win Either Half.
***Premier League Team of the Week***
GOALKEEPER- Andre Onana- Manchester United
RIGHT-BACK- Kieran Trippier- Newcastle
CENTRE-BACK- Jamaal Lascelles- Newcastle
CENTRE-BACK- Mads Andersen- Luton
LEFT-BACK- Marcus Tavernier- Bournemouth
MIDFIELDER- Kobbie Mainoo- Manchester United
MIDFIELDER- Trent Alexander-Arnold- Liverpool
MIDFIELDER- Lewis Miley- Newcastle
FORWARD- Justin Kluivert- Bournemouth
FORWARD- Ollie Watkins- Aston Villa
FORWARD- Jacob Brown- Luton
STAR MAN- Kobbie Mainoo- Manchester United
BOURNEMOUTH v ASTON VILLA
14.00 in England
Bournemouth had a great day out in Sheffield partaking in the Greasy Chip Butty and smoking Woodbines as well as gaining a victory by a 3-1 away day score.
Marcus Tavernier scored twice, one either side of a Justin Kluivert strike to give Andoni Iraola’s Cherries back-to-back victories following the game against Newcastle before the International Break.
Sheffield United scored a very late consolation.
Justin, who is the son of the legendary Dutch player Patrick, has now scored a goal in the Top Flight of 5 of the European Leagues.
Premier League (Bournemouth), Serie A (Roma), La Liga (Valencia), Ligue Un (Nice) and the Bundesliga (RB Leipzig) matching Florin Raducioiu and Stefan Jovetic.
Added to that, Young Justin has scored in the Eredivisie for Ajax.
Bournemouth sit in 16th place with 12 points from 13 games but are slowly moving away from the relegation zone and it does appear that Andoni’s methods are now starting to click with the Cherry players.
Aston Villa have moved into the Top Four sitting 4th with the same 28 points as Liverpool, just 2 adrift of Arsenal at the summit, following Sunday’s victory against Tottenham by a 2-1 away day score, as predicted in this EveryTip column last week.
After conceding a Spurs goal, Pau Torres and Ollie Watkins scored to give Unai Emery’s Claret and Blues the brilliant win at the Chas and Dave Memorial Stadium.
Aston Villa host Legia Warsaw at Villa Park in the Europa Conference League Match-Day 5 on Thursday.
Both teams were under the guidance of different Managers in last season’s encounter at the Vitality.
Bournemouth had Scott Parker at the helm with his England Midfield teammate Steven Gerrard in charge of Aston Villa.
On the sidelines, Scott got the ball and passed it to Steven who passed it back to Scott who gave it straight to Steven who passed it back to Scott.
‘Oi, what are you two idiots doing?’
Came a shout from the crowd.
‘Same as we did in every England game we played in!’
Was the reply from both.
And folk ask why England’s Golden Generation never won anything!
On the actual pitch, goals from Jefferson Lerma and Kieffer Moore gave the Cherries the victory over the Villa by a 2-0 scoreline.
‘Over here Stevie!’
Betfred offer Bournemouth at 12/5, the draw at 3/1 and slight Odds On 19/20 for Aston Villa to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 9/2 that Ollie Watkins Scores First and 6/5 that there are Over 3.5 Goals.
CHELSEA v BRIGHTON
14.00 in England
Chelsea are the ‘Four Club’ at the moment and what is meant by that is the last 3 fixtures have resulted in the Blues scoring 4 goals in a victory, scoring 4 goals and conceding 4 in a draw and now conceding 4 goals in a defeat.
On Saturday, some horrendous defending by Reece James and Thiago Silva contributed to Chelsea suffering a loss against Newcastle at St James Park by a 4-1 scoreline.
Raheem Sterling scored the Blues goal to equalise an earlier Magpies strike, however, Newcastle added a 2nd on the hour mark and then the usually composed Thiago made an error to gift the home team a 3rd.
Reece James, who had been shown a Yellow Card just after the break, then received a 2nd and the subsequent Red to put the kettle on for his mates before the Blues conceded a 4th.
There was some discussion about Reece James over the International Break with the lad not joining up with the England Team.
As often with these issues, there’s different conjecture regarding the exact reasons but Reece, who is 23 years old, hasn’t actually played that many times over the past few years.
The lad is obviously a talent and should at least be in the Three Lions Squad if not the starting eleven, however, injuries and the occasional Red Card may just give Gareth Southgate a reason not to pick.
Chelsea sit in 10th place with the same 16 points as the West London rivals Brentford.
Brighton come into this fixture following a victory against Nottingham Forest by a narrow 3-2 scoreline.
The goals going in as follows,
3′ Anthony Elanga (1-0 Nottingham Forest)
26′ Evan Ferguson (1-1 Brighton)
45+4′ Joao Pedro (1-2 Brighton)
Half-time Fish and Chips.
58′ Joao Pedro-penalty (1-3 Brighton)
76′ Morgan Gibbs-White-penalty (2-3 Nottingham Forest)
Full-time Pint of Guinness.
Lewis Dunk had a bad couple of minutes when Forest were awarded a penalty in the 76th minute (well a couple of minutes before then but it took a while to actually convert).
Not only was Lewis shown a Yellow for a few choice words towards the referee Anthony Taylor but the Big Defender couldn’t keep his mouth shut and received another Yellow for a few more choice words and the subsequent Red to leave his teammates to play the last 20 minutes or so with 10 Men.
We have all been there Lewis but one has just got to keep the mouth shut.
Luckily the indiscretion from Mr Dunk didn’t cost Brighton the game with Roberto De Zerbi’s men holding on for all 3 points.
The Seagulls sit in 8th place with 22 points from the 13 fixtures played.
Brighton travel to Greece on Thursday to face AEK in the Europa League so travelling could be a factor in this fixture at Stamford Bridge.
Frank Lampard was in charge of Chelsea when Roberto De Zerbi’s Brighton last visited the Bridge in April.
Conor Gallagher scored the opening goal that was equalised by Danny Welbeck taking both teams in level at the break.
Brighton’s Julio Enciso scored the winner in the 2nd-half giving the Seagulls the victory by a 2-1 away day score.
Chelsea did knock Brighton out of the Carabao Cup earlier on in the season with a victory at Stamford Bridge by a 1-0 scoreline.
Betfred offer Chelsea at Odds On 7/10, the draw at 16/5 and 10/3 for Brighton to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 8/5 that Raheem Sterling Scores Anytime and 5/4 that Chelsea Score in Both Halves.
LIVERPOOL v FULHAM
14.00 in England
Liverpool matched Man City on Saturday gaining a point from a draw by a 1-1 score.
After conceding a City goal, Trent Alexander-Arnold scored with 10 minutes remaining to give the Reds a point.
Whether it was well deserved is for others to decide but to come away from the Etihad with a point is no mean feat as City beat most teams in their own backyard.
There was a contentious clash which could have resulted in a goal for Pep’s Blues and a loss for Jurgen’s Reds but the dreaded VAR assumed a foul had occurred on Alisson and subsequently ruled out.
Liverpool sit in 3rd place with the same 28 points as Aston Villa but sit just above the Villains having a better goal difference.
There are 6 points separating the Top Six teams which basically is 2 wins for anyone and 2 losses.
A few weeks ago, Tottenham were a couple of minutes from gaining a victory over Wolves and remaining at the summit, however, 2 late goals conceded, plus the goals conceded against Villa on Sunday, as well as the loss against Chelsea, have seen Big Ange’s Spurs drop down to 5th.
That is simply how tight the Premier League is at the moment.
Liverpool host the Austrian club LASK on Thursday in the Europa League, however, despite suffering a defeat in the competition last time out, progression is virtually guaranteed so a few will more than likely be rested for this visit from Fulham.
Fulham gained a controversial victory over Wolves at Craven Cottage on Monday Night Football, with Marco Silva’s Cottagers inflicting the defeat on Gary O’Neil’s Gold and Blacks by a 3-2 scoreline.
Alex Iwobi opened the scoring after 7 minutes before Wolves equalised to take both teams in level at the break.
It was then a story of Three Penalties, 2 awarded to Fulham and 1 to Wolves, with all 3 converted to give the home team the win.
Willian scored the 2 Cottagers’ spot-kicks.
All 3 could be considered ‘soft’ with interference from the dreaded VAR that prompted the on-field referee Michael Salisbury to come out afterwards admitting at least one of them shouldn’t have been given.
The victory sees Fulham jump up to 14th place with the same 15 points as Wolves and Crystal Palace.
A single Mo Salah converted penalty was the difference between Liverpool and Fulham in last season’s encounter at Anfield, giving Jurgen’s Reds the victory over Marco’s Cottagers by a 1-0 scoreline.
Betfred offer Liverpool at Odds On 2/9, the draw at 11/2 and 10/1 for Fulham to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 4/1 that Mo Salah Scores First and 23/20 that Liverpool Win To Nil.
WEST HAM v CRYSTAL PALACE
14.00 in England
West Ham gained a great victory over Burnley on Saturday at Turf Moor in the Battle of the Claret and Blues.
After conceding a goal from a penalty just after the interval, Burnley’s Dara O’Shea was credited with an own goal before Tomas Soucek scored the winner in the 91st minute to give David Moyes Boys the win from a 2-1 away day score.
That leaves the Hammers in 9th place with 20 points from the opening 13 fixtures completed.
West Ham will have played against TSC of Serbia in the Europa League before this visit of Crystal Palace, so the long trip to the Balkans may be a factor.
Crystal Palace come into this London Derby off the back of the 4th defeat in the last 5 games.
On Saturday, against Luton, Michael Olise scored a superb individual goal, however, it wasn’t enough to prevent the Hatters from inflicting a defeat on Palace by a 2-1 scoreline.
Unfortunately, despite Roy Hodgson being
able to start Eberechi Eze and Michael Olise for the first time in a while, it was a disappointing result for the Eagle Ultras.
Added to that, Eberechi Eze picked up another injury and may be missing for a while.
Crystal Palace sit in 13th place, sandwiched between Fulham and Wolves, all having 15 points.
This fixture in last season’s campaign was played just over 12 months ago at the beginning of November with Palace gaining the away day victory by a 2-1 scoreline.
Said Benrahma scored first for West Ham before goals from Wilfried Zaha and Michael Olise gave Crystal Palace all 3 points.
Michael’s winner came in the 94th minute.
Betfred offer West Ham at Evens 1/1, the draw at 12/5 and 11/4 for Crystal Palace to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 7/5 that Jarrod Bowen Scores Anytime and 8/5 that Michael Olise Scores Anytime.
MAN CITY v TOTTENHAM
Man City dropped a place down to 2nd following the draw against Liverpool on Saturday.
Whilst it was a disappointing result for the Citizens, it wasn’t a defeat with the point gained leaving City with 29 from the opening 13 games.
As mentioned previously, there are just 6 points between the Top Six teams so a couple of victories here and there can change the positions of any of the teams.
Erling Haaland scored the Man City goal against Liverpool, which is the Norwegian/Leeds lads’ 14th Premier League goal of the season so far.
Unfortunately, John Newsome didn’t get a chance to watch the game as this EveryTip contributor was down in Lincoln watching his beloved Barnsley FC gain a point from a draw against the Imps by a 2-2 score.
The Archbishop was happy.
John went to Sincil Bank to watch Barnsley take on Lincoln for the first time back in August 1979, as a 9-year-old.
That game just happened to be the debut of the Barnsley Legendary Midfielder Ronnie Glavin.
All the best Ronnie.
There is the 5th game of the Champions League Group Stage against RB Leipzig before this game against Tottenham.
Tottenham have now suffered defeats in the last 3 Premier League games, following Sunday’s loss against Aston Villa at the Chas and Dave Memorial Stadium.
Giovani Lo Celso, who started for Tottenham for the first time in an age, scored a brilliant opening goal, however, Big Ange’s Spurs conceded twice to ultimately suffer the defeat by a 2-1 scoreline.
That was the same scoreline from the previous defeat against Wolves before the International Break.
The decline in Tottenham’s fortunes can be pinpointed to the 45th minute in the game against Chelsea on the 6th of November when James Maddison and Micky Van De Ven were both substituted due to injury.
Those two players were the main reason that Ange Postecoglou’s LilyWhites sat at the summit of the Premier League after 10 games.
Following the 3 defeats, Tottenham now sit in 5th place with 26 points with everyone connected with the club hoping James and Micky are back from injury, sooner rather than later.
Last Sunday the 26th of November, the ex-Tottenham and several other clubs Manager, Terry Venables, sadly passed away aged 80 years old.
The legendary boss was in charge of one of the Golden Generation of Three Lions players between 1994-1996 and oversaw England reaching the Semi-Final of Euro’96 that took place in this country.
Sadly, like most of the Three Lions escapades in Major Tournaments, the team fell close to the final hurdle and unfortunately, Mr Venables didn’t have his contract renewed which was a shame for the faithful who had thoughts of Terry leading England to glory in France’98.
However, the lad gave the England faithful one of the most fun Summers of one’s life.
Back in 1987, John Newsome and the loveable OzScot Andrew, who was just a Scot at the time, went to a game at the Nou Camp or Camp Nou, where Terry ‘El Tel’ Venables was in charge of Barcelona.
It was Sunday the 20th of September 1987 and Barcelona were playing Valencia.
Whilst boss of the iconic team, 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 Andy 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.
Barcelona had a blonde-haired German Midfielder called Bernd Schuster who went on to play for and Manage the fierce 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.
In the Valencia team was the ex-Watford Manager Quique Sánchez Flores.
Valencia inflicted a defeat on Barcelona that late September Sunny Sunday Afternoon of 1987, 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.
Mr Venables did win a La Liga in 1985 and then took Barcelona to the Final of the European Cup the following season, narrowly missing out against Steaua Bucharest, following a penalty shootout defeat, as well as having the honour of selling Diego Maradona.
Not many Managers have done that and lived to tell the tale but El Tel got rid of Diego and brought in Steve Archibald, which surprisingly, despite Mr Maradona being a legend, the Barcelona faithful welcomed the Scotsman.
It was a fantastic experience, visiting the Camp Nou back in 1987 which saw Braveheart and JB have a great day out for Terry’s final hurrah in Spain.
Rest In Peace, Mr Terry Venables.
This was a Game Week-7 affair last season, however, the fixture didn’t take place until the beginning of January with City gaining the victory over Spurs by a 4-2 scoreline.
Dejan Kulusevski scored for Tottenham in the 44th minute, however, that wasn’t the end of the 1st-half goals with Emerson Royal adding a 2nd before the half-time cup of tea.
Pep must have got into his boys in the dressing room with Julian Alvarez pulling a goal back in the 51st minute.
Erling Haaland then scored the equaliser before a Riyad Mahrez double gave Pep’s High Flying Blues the home win over Antonio’s Spurs.
Betfred offer Man City at Odds On 2/7, the draw at 5/1 and 8/1 for Tottenham to come away with all 3-points.
Betfred offer 4/1 that Julian Alvarez Scores First and 11/8 that Man City Win To Nil.
The loveable OzScot, still on his holidays in some far-flung place, was over the moon when he learned that Celtic could only manage to gain a point from a draw against Motherwell (who?) on Saturday and knew that his beloved Rangers could reduce the gap at the Top of the Pub League to 6 points with a victory in the Teddy Bears game against Aberdeen (who?) on Sunday.
Unfortunately for the Big Lad, the Sun went down a bit too early when the result came in, that Rangers themselves could only gain a point from a draw against the Dandy Dons.
The gap at the summit of the Scottish Premier League is still 8 points, however, Celtic have played a game more, meaning if Rangers get a victory in the game in hand, they will be trailing by 5 points.
Both play in the respective European Competitions this week with Celtic heading to Italy to take on Lazio in the Champions League and Rangers facing Aris Limassol in the Europa League, with that fixture taking place at Ibrox meaning no travelling for the Blue side of Glasgow.
The Green and White Hoops will be eliminated from the competition if a defeat occurs which will give them an unwanted record of going out of the competition with a game still to play.
The Teddy Bears will qualify for the knockout stages of the Europa League that start in February next year if a victory occurs against the Cypriots.
As for Braveheart, the lad’s gone quiet following the result against Aberdeen and was last seen drowning his sorrows in a bar on the final few days of the 13th holiday of the year.
He’s still spinning around.