Have the wheels finally come off the track, for Liverpool? A run of increasingly unconvincing performances finally brought a resounding defeat at Watford. This was followed by another poor showing in the FA Cup, when they were knocked out by Chelsea on Tuesday. Does John Newsome think Bournemouth can cause a huge shock at Anfield, on Saturday? Here are his views on all matches scheduled for game-week 29. You can view all previous analysis from John’s regular column here: English Premier League Predictions For Saturday
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LIVERPOOL v BOURNEMOUTH
Early Saturday Afternoon Football live on BT Sport.
A 12.30 PM kick-off in England to get the weekend’s football underway.
So it’s over, Liverpool’s unbeaten dominance of the Premier League has come to an end with a stunning 3-0 defeat away at Vicarage Rd on Saturday.
The result is the result, what would be a concern to Jurgen was the performance especially in defence.
A couple of the goals were as if Virgil Van Dijk had suddenly disappeared and his much less talented twin brother had taken over the famous Number 4 shirt.
What was significant and in no way a slur on Dejan Lovran, was that Klipperty decided to partner Big Virgil with the Croatian defender who had only made 2-appearances since this reverse fixture back at the beginning of December, where coincidentally Dejan got injured after 40-minutes.
Virgil Van Dijk just didn’t look comfortable with Dejan Lovran at the side of him and the Watford front line ran wild scoring three, 2nd-half goals to end Liverpool’s unbeaten run.
A lot would say that a defeat was in the pipeline and Liverpool had been getting away with results, none more so than the lucky victory against West Ham on the previous Monday, where, if it wasn’t for the exploits of the Bubbles ‘keeper Lukasz Fabianski, could have suffered a defeat in that game.
With a loss against Atletico Madrid in the Champions League, that is now 2-defeats in 3-games for Liverpool which will concern the faithful.
As mentioned, a result is a result, it really is the performance against Watford that will be a worry for Jurgen Klopp who’s Reds will win the Premier League title, that’s not in doubt, it’s just when and where and also whether Klipperty Klopp can inspire his team to win a couple of other competitions this season, including the FA Cup and Champions League.
Bournemouth got a great 2-2 draw against Frank Lampard’s Chelsea on Saturday, however, the point gained wasn’t enough to lift the Cherries out of the relegation places.
After trailing 1-0 at the break, Jefferson Lerma and Josh King scored early in the 2nd-half to give the Cherries a lead against the Blues.
Unfortunately for Eddies Cherries, like a bad dog walker, Bournemouth couldn’t hold on to the lead and conceded an equaliser late on to finish the game in a 2-2 draw.
When Eddie and his team left the Vitality pitch with the point, knowing Watford were yet to play Liverpool, Mr Howe would have thought that it was a good day.
Unfortunately, with West Ham’s great victory against Southampton and Watford’s subsequent result against Liverpool, both jumped above Bournemouth, out of the bottom 3, leaving the Cherries in the drop-zone on goal-difference.
A trip to Liverpool, even after the Reds surprise loss against the Hornets, is probably not the fixture that will give the Cherries faithful hope of getting out of the relegation zone, however, all Eddie can do is get his boys ready and after watching the Liverpool back-line, tell Josh King and the Wilson’s to have a good go at Jurgen’s Reds.
Before this game at Anfield, Liverpool will have visited Stamford Bridge to take on Chelsea in the last 16-of the FA Cup, which is a cracker of a fixture in its self.
It was another emphatic victory for Liverpool when his Champions elect ventured to the Amex back at the beginning of December.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Nabi Keita gave Liverpool a 2-0 lead going in at the interval.
Mo Salah scored early in the 2nd-half and with no more goals, the Reds secured a 3-0 victory, which is an aggregate score of 17-0 in favour of Jurgen over Eddie in the last 4-Premier League games, 2 at Anfield and 2 at the Amex.
Mo Salah has scored 7 of those 17-goals, so it’s fair to say Mo likes scoring against the Cherries.
Betway offer Liverpool at Odds On 2/9, the Draw at 11/2 and 11/1 for Bournemouth to come away with all 3-points.
Betway offer 3/1 that Mo Salah Scores Two Plus Goals and slight Odds On 19/20 that Liverpool Win To Nil.
Home Win 4-0
SHEFFIELD UNITED v NORWICH
A bumper Saturday afternoon bunch of fixtures all kicking-off at 15.00 PM in England, with 5-games in total, this being one of them.
Sheffield United have had another mid-season break after not playing last weekend due to their opponents Aston Villa competing in Carabao Cup.
Little James from Swinton took advantage of the mid-winter break by going away for a couple of days and getting some sun on his back.
Jimbo and his girlfriend decided to go on Safari and after looking in the Travel Agent windows searching for trips to Kenya and South Africa, the lovely couple decided on the Yorkshire Wildlife Park in Doncaster, which, as it turns out, is about 10-miles from little Jim’s home.
Still, James wasn’t sure if he needed his passport but having been reassured by his missus that the passport wasn’t required for the wildlife adventure, the pair pitched their tents upon the Yorkshire planes and waited, in trepidation for the animals to come by.
Jimbo was amazed when he saw some black and white wildlife, however, his girlfriend had to point out to him that they were in fact cows and could be found all over Yorkshire and surrounding areas.
Jim was literally flabbergasted when he saw what he assumed were little flying cows but again, his lovely girlfriend had to tell him that they were in fact Magpies.
James and the rest of the Blunts will be hoping for a victory against the other flying birds, the Canaries, to keep up their European hopes.
With Wolves winning and Manchester United drawing, Sheffield United slip to 8th in the Premier League table, with 40-points, the same as Tottenham and just 2-points behind Wolves and Manchester United who have now played a game more than the Blades, so although not playing this weekend, Sheffield United sit in rather a good place at the moment.
Norwich would have thought, prior to last Saturday that arguably, they got the result of the weekend and did it early doors by beating Brendan’s Wonderful Human Beings on Friday night.
Although, the 1-0 victory was sprinkled with a bit of luck with the dreaded VAR cancelling out, what looked like a perfectly good Leicester goal, Daniel Farke’s Canaries will take the win and move up to Yorkshire to try and build on the confidence gained from Jamal Lewis’s solitary goal against the Foxes.
The 3-points gained, leaves Farke-Life’s Blurs with 21-points, still 6-points away from safety but with Aston Villa not playing, due to their contribution in the Carabao Cup Final, there is still hope that Norwich can escape safety, with 10-games to go, all connected with Norwich will feel that it ain’t over until the fat lady sings, however, the rotund female performer is just finishing off one of Delia Smiths Michelin Starred meals and is getting ready to warble.
Both Sheffield United and Norwich will have played in the FA Cup prior to this fixture, with the Blades travelling to the Madejski Stadium to take on Reading and Norwich heading to Tottenham’s new stadium to take on Jose’s boys in that particular competition.
When these 2-newly promoted teams met at Carrow Rd back in December Alex Tettey scored an early goal to take Norwich in at the break leading 1-0.
Chris Wilder got into his Blades in the dressing room and soon after the restart, Ender Stevens (who has to be nicknamed-East by his teammates) equalised for Sheffield United.
Within minutes of Ender’s goal, George Baldock gave United the lead and with no more goals scored the Blades beat the Canaries by a 2-1 scoreline.
Betway offer Sheffield United at Odds On 13/20, the Draw at 14/5 and 9/2 for Norwich to come away with all 3-points.
Betway offer 7/5 that Billy Sharp Scores Anytime and slight Odds On 17/20 that there are Under 2.5 Goals.
Home Win 2-0
ARSENAL v WEST HAM
A rare 15.00 PM start time in England for the Gunners as they entertain their London rivals the Hammers at the Emirates.
Arsenal had last weekend off after their opponents Man City were involved in the Carabao Cup.
Probably a good thing for the Gooners faithful after seeing their beloved team unceremoniously dumped out of the Europa League the previous Thursday against Olympiacos.
After making the final of that competition last season, it was, in reality, the only way that Arsenal could possibly find a way to gain entry into next season’s Champions League.
A Top-4 finish looks unlikely and now out of the Europa League, Arsenal’s long European involvement may be coming to an end unless they somehow win the FA Cup or sneak into the Top-6/7 which looks increasingly doubtful.
West Ham comfortably beat Southampton at the London Stadium on Saturday which looked a tricky game for David Moyes and his Boys.
Although the Hammers lost against Liverpool, the previous Monday, their performance against the Champions elect should have given them the confidence to take into the game against the Saints.
Jarrod Bowen, who was signed by West Ham in the January Transfer Window, got his 1st-start for his new club after a couple of cameo appearances from the bench.
The new boy didn’t waste much time in opening his Hammers account scoring the opener after just 15-minutes.
Southampton equalised midway through the 1st-half before Sebastian Haller gave West Ham a 2-1 lead at the break.
Michail Antonio made it 3-1 early in the 2nd-half and with no more goals, the Hammers got the well-deserved victory.
The valuable 3-points gained, gives David Moyes side 27-for the season so far, the same as Watford and Bournemouth, however, it’s Eddies Cherries that find themselves in the drop-zone by way of goal-difference.
West Ham have scored more than the other two but have conceded more and with Aston Villa having played a game less, only 2-points adrift of West Ham, the Hammers position is still perilous and this game against their London rivals could plunge Moyes Men back into the bottom-3, depending on the result.
Arsenal take on League 1 side Portsmouth in the FA Cup on Monday night in hope of progressing to the Quarter-Final of that particular competition with a victory.
At the London Stadium in December, both teams were managed by different bosses with Manuel Pellegrini still at the Hammers helm and Freddie Ljungberg in temporary charge of the Gunners.
Angelo Ogbonna had given West Ham a half-time lead, scoring late on in the 1st-half.
After the break, a 9-minute goal blitz by Arsenal saw Freddie get a great 3-1 victory.
Gabriel Martinelli, Nicolas Pepe and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang with the quick-fire goals.
Betway offer Arsenal at Odds On 8/15, the Draw at 100/30 and 19/4 for West Ham to come away with all 3-points.
Betway offer 21/10 that Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang Scores First and 6/4 that there are Over 3.5 Goals.
Home Win 3-1
CRYSTAL PALACE v WATFORD
This game at Selhurst Park kicks-off at 15.00 PM in England.
Crystal Palace got a narrow 1-0 away victory against Brighton in the early Saturday Afternoon kick-off.
Jordan Ayew with the decisive goal in the 2nd-half.
Late in the game, Wilfried Zaha had the chance to make it 2-0 but missed an open goal with his shot coming back off the post.
Wilfried wasn’t happy, however, it’s difficult to remember when Wilfried Zaha was last happy as his demeanour always appears to be miserable.
Start smiling Wilfried, there are a lot worse things you could be doing on a Saturday Afternoon.
The victory gives Palace 36-points which means Roy’s Boys are inching ever closer to safety and Roy will feel another couple of wins will see them compete in next season’s Premier League, with or without Big Wilf.
Before Saturday’s late Afternoon kick-off at Vicarage Rd, everyone connected with Norwich were thinking that their 1-0 victory against Leicester, 24-hours earlier, would be the stand-out result of Game Week Twenty-Eight.
Fast forward to 19.30 PM on Saturday evening and Watford had top-trumped the Canaries by getting, not only the result of the weekend, of Game Week Twenty-Eight but the result of the season so far, by beating Liverpool.
Watford’s brilliant 3-0 victory inflicted the 1st-Premier League defeat on Jurgen’s Reds this season and ended the prospect of Liverpool going the full season unbeaten.
After a goalless 1st-half, Ismaila Sarr took advantage of some surprisingly poor defending by the Reds and scored 2-goals after the break.
The Hornets legend Troy Deeney added the 3rd to give Nigel Pearson’s men a well-deserved 3-0 victory that lifts them out of the relegation places, albeit on goal difference.
Watford have 27-points, the same as Bournemouth who are 3rd-from bottom and West Ham who are above the Hornets by way of scoring more goals.
After being at the foot of the Premier League table when Big Nigel took over, it’s simply remarkable that the Hornets find themselves out of the drop-zone.
Back in early December at Vicarage Rd, Watford were in management transition with temporary manager Aiden Mullins being at the Hornets Helm prior to Nigel Pearson’s inauguration.
Both teams failed to score in a drab 0-0 draw which benefited Watford more than Palace.
Betway offer Crystal Palace at 6/4, the Draw at 9/4 and 19/4 for Watford to come away with all 3-points.
Betway offer 6/1 that Luka Milivojevic Scores Anytime and 8/5 that Troy Deeney Scores Anytime.
WOLVES v BRIGHTON
A 15.00 PM start time in England.
Wolves came away from Tottenham’s swanky new stadium with all 3-points following a very entertaining game that pitched 2-Portuguese managers against each other.
Nuno actually played a few times under Jose at Porto.
The surprise in that statement is that Nuno was one of Jose’s players, a goalkeeper in fact, however, due to Nuno looking like he is 65, the surprise is that he played for Jose and not the other way around.
After going behind early on, Matt Doherty equalised for the Gold and Blacks.
With it looking like both teams would go in at the break level, Tottenham made it 2-1 on the 45-minute mark.
Nuno Espírito Santo got into his boys in the dressing room, who came out and dominated the 2nd-half with Diogo Jota scoring the equaliser.
Raul Jimenez then scored the winner for Wolves, with Nuno masterminding a superb 3-2 victory over Dracula.
The Gold and Blacks leapfrog Tottenham into 6th-place and with Manchester United subsequently drawing at the same time as the Wolves victory, Wolves have the same 42-points as United but lie just below them on goal difference.
Combine that with progression to the last-16 of the Europa League, Nuno is assembling a great team that rivals the Wolves of the 1950s and ‘60s who, the older generation will remember, were a force to be reckoned with.
The crazy thing about this crazy season is Wolves are now just 3-points away from Chelsea who sit in the coveted Top-4 and with Man City’s impending European ban, 5th-position in the Premier League could become a Champions League place for next season.
That said, Wolves will be going all-out to win the Europa League to gain automatic entry into the top European competition.
Wolves take on Arsenal’s conquerors Olympiacos in the last-16 and could, in theory, face Manchester United or Scottish club Glasgow Rangers in the latter stages, if all progress.
Brighton suffered a narrow 1-0 defeat against their M23 rivals in the early Saturday Afternoon kick-off at the Amex.
The game against Crystal Palace was always going to be a tight affair with not many goals but the Seagulls were on the wrong end of a solitary goal in the 2nd-half to suffer the defeat.
Graham Potter’s men now find themselves just a point above the relegation places and with Wolves in fine form, this trip to Molineux could in effect, see Brighton drop into the bottom 3 if results go against them.
A few months ago, Harry Potter signed a contract extension which at the time was a reward for his fine start to the season.
Now, it could appear that the hierarchy at the Amex may have offered the contract extension prematurely.
Graham needs to get his players back on track and back to the form that warranted the new contract.
This was a very entertaining pre-Christmas fixture when Wolves headed south to the Amex at the beginning of December.
Both teams played out a great game that finished in a Desmond 2-2 draw, with surprisingly all the goals coming in the 1st-half.
Diogo Jota scored his and Wolves opener, with Neal Maupay and Davy Proper scoring the Seagulls goals.
Diogo bookended the scoring by getting his and Wolves 2nd, just before half-time.
With no further goals after the break, both teams went home with a well-deserved point.
Betway offer Wolves at slight Odds On 7/10, the Draw at 14/5 and 15/4 for Brighton to come away with all 3-points.
Betway offer 13/10 that Diogo Jota Scores Anytime and 13/8 that Wolves Win to Nil.
Home Win 3-0
SOUTHAMPTON v NEWCASTLE
The last of the 5-fixtures kicking-off at 15.00 PM in England.
After a bit of a Renaissance in their season, getting away from the relegation zone, Southampton have now lost 3 out of their last 4-Premier League games, the latest being a 3-1 defeat away at the London Stadium.
Saints youngster, Michael Obafemi did equalise an early West Ham goal, however, the Hammers scored again to take a 2-1 lead into the break.
West Ham scored a 3rd, in the 2nd-half to inflict another defeat on Wreck-It Ralph’s men.
The loss against West Ham leaves Southampton with 34-points, 7-points more than the relegation-threatened teams so Ralph will be looking for a couple more victories in the remaining 10-games, to prevent a relegation battle.
With all the shocks occurring over the weekend, probably what was not a shock was Newcastle not scoring.
At the moment, the Magpies strikers are experiencing something of a goal drought.
The 0-0 draw against Burnley at St James Park on Saturday is Newcastle’s 4th-game in a row that they have failed to score.
Joelinton, who as to be nicknamed Joelene in the Newcastle dressing room, is struggling in front of goal and couldn’t hit the proverbial cows backside with a banjo.
Miguel Almiron struggles to score himself, so, between the two of them, Steve Bruce has problems and may have to look elsewhere.
Dwight Gayle was brought back into the starting eleven after only getting 20-minutes game time in the last 7-Premier League fixtures.
With 90-minutes under his belt, Dwight could be the answer to the goal-scoring conundrum.
If Steve Bruce fancies a free transfer, there’s a 50-year old EveryTip contributor that is available that would score more goals than Miguel and Joelene.
The boy has played against Steve’s assistant Steve Agnew back in the day when Mr Agnew was showcasing his skills at Oakwell in the late ’80s.
Big Brucey will know where the problems lie and will be getting his boys practising putting the ball in the back of the onion, this week in training.
Prior to this game at St Mary’s, Newcastle will have competed in the FA Cup against the Championship leaders West Bromwich Albion.
When these teams met at St James Park in early December, Newcastle took the spoils with a 2-1 victory over Southampton.
After a goalless 1st-half, Danny Ings gave the Saints the lead after the break.
Jonjo Shelvey equalised before Federico Fernandez got the Magpies winner with time running out.
Betway offer Southampton surprisingly at slight Odds On 8/13, the Draw at 16/5 and 17/4 for Newcastle to come away with all 3-points.
Betway offer 4/1 that Danny Ings Scores First and 17/10 that Southampton Win To Nil.
Home Win 2-0
BURNLEY v TOTTENHAM
Late Saturday Afternoon Football live on Sky Sports, with this game kicking-off at 17.30 PM in England.
Burnley played in the drab game of the weekend at St James Park, lowering themselves down to Newcastle’s level by playing out a 0-0 draw with both teams failing to find the back of the net.
Nowadays, there are not that many goalless games in the Premier League so when it does occur it becomes a surprise to everyone.
Not much else can be said about the visit to Tyneside and Sean Dyche just needs to get his players moved on and prepared for this visit from Jose’s Tottenham, who will be hurting following the loss against Wolves on Sunday.
Spurs actually lead twice in the game against Wolves, with Steven Bergwijn scoring 1st.
Wolves equalised soon after but Serge Aurier gave Tottenham a 2-1 lead at the interval.
Unfortunately for the Spurs faithful, Wolves scored twice in the 2nd-half inflicting a 3-2 defeat on Tottenham who have now lost their last 2-Premier League games.
Jose’s men lie 7th in the table, with 40-points, the same as Sheffield United, however, United have played a game less.
Burnley are just 2-points behind Tottenham so a win for the Clarets would see Sean’s side leapfrog Jose’s Lilywhites.
Tottenham visit Carrow Rd, to take on fellow Premier League boys Norwich in the last-16 of the FA Cup before they head to Turf Moor.
Jose Mourinho’s new-look Spurs, hammered Sean Dyche’s Clarets back in early December getting a brilliant 5-0 victory at the Chas and Dave Memorial Stadium.
Harry Kane, Lucas Moura and Son Heung-Min with the 1st-half goals to give Tottenham a 3-0 lead at the break.
Big Harry added his 2nd and Spurs 4th before Moussa Sissoko rounded off the rout midway through the 2nd-half.
Betway offer Burnley at 11/5, the Draw at 23/10 and 13/10 for Tottenham to come away with all 3-points.
Betway offer 4/1 that Chris Wood Scores First and 15/4 that Burnley Win To Nil.
Home Win 2-0
CHELSEA v EVERTON
Early Sunday Afternoon Football live on Sky Sports, kicking off at 14.00 PM in England.
Frank Lampard’s Chelsea played in a very entertaining Desmond on Saturday against Bournemouth at the Vitality.
With talk that Chelsea could do with a striker as back-up to Tammy Abraham, the Blues may already have a goal-scorer in their ranks who, after recent performances, should be shoved upfront.
Marcos Alonso scored twice in the 2-2 draw against Bournemouth, following scoring a goal against Spurs, a couple of weeks ago.
Marcos appears to know where the back of the net is.
Mr Alonso scored 1st-against the Cherries but after Bournemouth scored twice it was left, once again, to the Spanish left-back to rescue Chelsea with a late equaliser.
The point from the draw, gives the Blues 45-for the season, 3-more than the chasing pack of Manchester United and Wolves and 5-less than Leicester in 3rd-spot in the Premier League.
It could be argued that Frank Lampard’s Chelsea are in the most precarious position of them all as at the minute they have the Golden Ticket but could quite easily be caught.
All to play for in the remaining 10-games.
Everton earned a point in a 1-1 draw against Manchester United on Sunday with Dominic Calvert-Lewin scoring a very fortunate goal after just 3-minutes of play.
Deciding to close down David De Gea when all David had to do was kick the ball long, Dominic took a chance that David was dilly-dallying and his suspicion paid off when David kicked the ball against Dominic which rebounded into the goal.
A great start for the Toffees.
What could be argued that United’s ‘keeper was responsible for Everton’s goal, the same could be said about United’s equaliser.
Bruno Fernandes took a speculative shot that found its way into the Everton goal, passed a helpless Jordan Pickford.
As the England Number 1 goalkeeper, it is well within the rights of the Toffees faithful to think that Jordan should save that shot from Bruno.
Carlo Ancelotti, Gareth Southgate and Jordan himself won’t be happy.
A point none the less, that gives Everton 37, the same as Arsenal and leaves the Toffees in mid-table.
Chelsea host Liverpool in a blockbuster of a game in the FA Cup, last-16, before the Blue side of Merseyside descend on Stamford Bridge.
The staff at the Bridge will definitely understand Scouse after this week and will be heard shouting ‘Calm Down’ in a Cockney accent.
Interim manager Duncan Ferguson inspired the Toffees to get a great 3-1 victory at Goodison Park back in December.
Richarlison scored after just 5-minutes to give Everton a 1-0 lead going in at the break.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin scored the Toffees 2nd early in the 2nd-half, just before Kovacic pulled a goal back for Frank’s Blues.
With time running out and Chelsea pushing for an equaliser, Dominic added his 2nd and Everton’s 3rd to give Big Dunc a great victory over Frank Lampard’s Chelsea.
Betway offer Chelsea surprisingly at slight Odds On 8/11, the Draw at 3/1 and 7/2 for Everton to come away with all 3-points.
Betway offer 6/5 that Dominic Calvert-Lewin Scores Anytime and 5/1 that Jorginho Scores Anytime.
MANCHESTER UNITED v MAN CITY
Late Sunday Afternoon Football live on Sky Sports.
This is a 16.30 PM start time in England.
The noisy neighbours head to Old Trafford to take on the numpty neighbour.
Manchester United got a well-deserved draw at Goodison Park on Sunday with Bruno Fernandes equalising an early Everton goal.
The point gained from the 1-1 draw against Everton leaves United with 42-points, still in 5th-place in the Premier League and only 3-points behind Frank Lampard’s Chelsea.
United do have a better goal difference than Chelsea so a victory here and a defeat for Frank could see Ole pounce on the Blues.
Below them though are Wolves, who have the same 42-points as United so all to play for in the remaining 10-fixtures.
What’s maybe a concern is that David De Gea didn’t cover himself in glory when after only 3-minutes, took his time on a clearance and smashed the ball against an Everton striker that rebounded into the goal.
It’s rumoured that United might just cash in on David in the summer and with a £50 Million bounty on his head, the money could be used to purchase a few players.
Over the Pennines in Sheffield, it’s a thought that the best goalkeeper at Manchester United is wearing another United’s jersey and Dean Henderson could be back at Old Trafford come the end of the season, to replace David if he goes.
David De Gea is a top-class goalkeeper that has saved Manchester United more than he has caused them problems.
Don’t give up on DDG just yet!
Man City remain in 2nd-place in the Premier League table, despite not playing at the weekend.
Not playing that is in the Premier League, as Pep’s High Flying City won the Carabao Cup Final on Sunday beating a plucky Aston Villa by a 2-1 scoreline.
Despite not playing in the Premier League, with Leicester losing against Norwich, City still have a 7-point gap over the Foxes and now a game in hand.
With Liverpool’s surprise loss too, City still have a 22-point gap behind the Reds but do have a game in hand on Jurgen’s boys.
That said, in reality, it really means Man City will finish 2nd in the Premier League but can win 3-trophies with 1-already in the bag, Pep will go all out to win the FA Cup and the Champions League which, City went to the Bernabeu and beat Real Madrid 2-1 in the 1st-leg of the last-16 tie.
Real Madrid legend Sergio Ramos was sent off in that 1st-leg so will miss the trip to the Etihad which gives City a huge advantage, especially with 2-away goals.
Both the Manchester clubs play midweek in the last-16 of the FA Cup, both away against Championship sides, with City playing first on Wednesday against Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough, with United playing a day later, against Wayne Rooney’s Derby County at Pride Park.
There is already a great team based in Italy called Inter Milan, officially called Internazionale Milano, who play at the San Siro along with AC Milan.
In the United States of America this weekend, a new team was born called Inter Miami.
The MLS is made up of 26-teams, split into 2-conferences, Eastern and Western and covers all of North America and Canada.
MLS stands for Major League Soccer, rivalling the MLB the Major League Baseball, however, not in the same company as NFL (National Football League) or NHL (National Hockey League).
Club Internacional de Futbol Miami or Inter Miami as they are better known, become another team added to compete in the MLS and will eventually have their own Swanky new stadium, that will rival Tottenham’s Chas and Dave Memorial Stadium.
For the time being, until the stadium is ready, Inter Miami will play in Fort Lauderdale at the old Lockhart Stadium.
Eventually, Inter will have their own Chas and Dave Memorial Stadium.
In 2007 a certain David Beckham signed for LA Galaxy for probably a few £Million pence.
What’s not commonly known about that contract is included in the small print, David was able to purchase an MLS franchise in the future.
That’s come to fruition in 2020 and DB7 is now the proud owner of Inter Miami.
Inter Miami lost their MLS bow, beaten 1-0 by Los Angeles FC, with ex-Arsenal striker Carlos Vela getting the solitary goal, however, although a defeat, the journey is more than the game and the good thing about the MLS is no one gets relegated, so Inter Miami have all the time in the world to succeed.
The one thing that stands Inter Miami apart from the rest is a certain David Beckham.
A man who achieves and puts his superb career down to being inspired by a chance meeting with this EveryTip contributor back in 1996.
Soon after the meeting at Woolley Edge service station on the M1 in Yorkshire, David scored that brilliant goal from the halfway line against Wimbledon and his career and life in general just escalated from that moment on.
Your welcome Mr Beckham!
Ole’s Wheels surprised everyone and ruined the early December Accas when Manchester United beat City by a 2-1 scoreline at the Etihad.
Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial gave United a 2-0 lead at the break.
Nicolas Otamendi scored a consolation for Pep’s Low Flying City late in proceedings but the final whistle blew and Ole got the much-needed win.
Betway offer Manchester United at 19/4, the Draw at 100/30 and slight Odds On 11/20 for Man City to come away with all 3-points.
Betway offer 4/1 that Bruno Fernandes Scores Anytime and 8/5 that there are Over 3.5 Goals.
Home Win 3-2
LEICESTER v ASTON VILLA
Monday Night Football, kicking-off at 20.00 PM in England, live on Sky Sports.
Although there are 10-days between Leicester’s back-to-back Premier League fixtures, the Foxes do play midweek in the FA Cup and host Championship side Birmingham, hoping to progress to the Quarter-Finals of that competition.
Brendan’s Wonderful Human Beings, unfortunately, suffered a 1-0 defeat in the Friday Night Football against Norwich but could consider themselves unlucky when the dreaded VAR ruled out a goal from Kelechi Iheanacho at the start of the 2nd-half at Carrow Rd.
It can be argued that it’s not the VAR’s fault and they are just implementing the rules, a rule that states that if the ball strikes a players hand or arm in the build-up to a goal then the goal has to be ruled out.
The rule or law is fine and if that’s how the law-makers IFAB want to go then fair enough, however, the same should apply if the ball strikes a defenders hand or arm in the penalty area and a penalty should be awarded regardless of whether it’s intentional or not.
There is no way on earth that Kelechi Iheanacho intentionally touched the ball with his arm, when he scored a perfectly good goal against Norwich, if anything the Norwich player deflected the ball onto Kelechi’s hand, therefore how is this a legitimate rule?
It just doesn’t make sense, especially if that happens in the Championship or the Scottish Premier League, who don’t use the dreaded VAR, the goal would stand.
The ridiculous offside rule that states a player is adjudged offside if his big toe or armpit is in an offside position, looks like it is going to be re-jigged in the coming weeks, where Arsenal legend, Arsene Wenger, who is now kicking about at UEFA, has come up with a new look law to take effect from June 2020.
The law or rule will state that if any part of a players body that can score is behind or level then it will now be onside, where, as it stands if the players head, for example, is behind the defender but his big toe is in front, then he’s offside.
If this comes into the football law and still a big if, then it will improve football and the dreaded VAR.
The next rule or law to get adjusted is the ridiculous handball rule.
The rule should be changed either one way or the other.
As in, if it strikes the hand or arm in the build-up to a goal and is accidental then the goal should stand.
The alternative to that, if the law-makers don’t want to change that particular situation, is to award a penalty if the ball strikes a defenders hand or arm in the penalty area.
It shouldn’t be a case of one rule for one and one rule for another.
The defeat leaves Leicester with 50-points, still in 3rd-place and still 7-points away from Man City who didn’t play in the Premier League over the weekend due to them competing in the Carabao Cup Final.
However, the gap as closed between the Foxes and the chasing pack with Manchester United drawing and the victory for Wolves, Brendan will want to get his boys back to winning ways against their Midland rivals after not achieving a victory in the last 5-games including a defeat against Villa in the Semi-Final of the Carabao Cup.
Rod Stewart is still not happy with Brendan, it’s now exactly 12-months since Brendan left Rod’s beloved Celtic, think about that first, 12-months, where as the time gone.
Up in the SPL (Scottish Pub League), Celtic are again the dominant force and look set to record their 9th-SPL title in a row.
It’s rumoured Rod is recording a cover version of the U2 hit,
‘With or Without You’
Dedicating the tune to Brendan.
At the recent Brit Awards, which Rod was in attendance, when asked about the anniversary of Brendan leaving Celtic for Leicester, Rod replied, ‘I don’t want to talk about it, how he broke my heart, if he had stayed there just a little bit longer, if Brendan had just stayed’.
Rod is still in trouble with the Florida Police Department after a New Years Eve spat which saw Big Rod allegedly punch a security guard.
It’s argued that the security guard wouldn’t let Rod and his son into a party, however, court papers report that the real reason Rod threw a haye-maker was because the guard was wearing a Leicester FC shirt, with ‘RODGERS’ on the back.
He’s Celtic, United but Brendan decided that Leicester is the best place to be.
Sheffield Superstar Jamie Vardy is on a barren run of goal-scoring at the moment.
The last time Jamie V scored, Bay City Rollers were at number 1 in the Pop Charts.
That’s obviously a joke but it is pre-Christmas that Jamie last scored which will be a concern to all connected at the King Power.
Aston Villa put up a solid display in the Carabao Cup Final against Man City but ultimately lost that particular game by a 2-1 scoreline and it’s now a question as to whether Dean Smith can turn that gritty performance against Pep’s High Flying City into a positive in the Premier League, or the Villains feel sorry for themselves and capitulate.
As it stands Villa are in the bottom 3 of the Premier League table but are only 2-points adrift of safety and have a game in hand over their relegation rivals so it really is still in Dean’s hands as to which League the Villa play in next term.
It’s a tough ask to stop the Foxes, especially as Sheffield Superstar Jamie Vardy has been on a barren run of goal-scoring and this could just be the game Jamie gets his touchback.
At Villa Park back in early December, the Foxes comfortably beat Aston Villa getting a great 4-1 away-day victory.
Jamie Vardy scored Leicester’s opener with Kelechi Iheanacho adding the 2nd.
Jack Grealish pulled a goal back for Villa right on the half-time whistle to give the Claret and Blues hope of a 2nd-half fight back.
Unfortunately, Dean Smith’s dressing room team tactics went out of the window soon after the restart when Johnny Evans added Leicester’s 3rd.
Jamie Vardy rounded off the scoring midway through the 2nd-half to give Leicester the midlands bragging rights.
Betway offer Leicester at Odds On 3/8, the Draw at 17/4 and 13/2 for Aston Villa to come away with all 3-points.
Betway offer 4/1 that Jamie Vardy Scores First and 13/10 that Leicester Win To Nil.
Home Win 2-0
MAN CITY v ARSENAL
Wednesday Night Football in England, with this rearranged Game Week 28 fixture kicking-off at 19.30 PM in England.
Pep 1 v Pep 2.
Prior to Sunday’s Manchester Derby, its the 22nd of February since Man City last competed in the Premier League, with Gabriel Jesus getting a late winner in a 1-0 victory over Leicester at the King Power.
Just prior to Gabriel’s solitary goal, Sergio Aguero missed a penalty, which was City’s 4th penalty miss in a row, so it won’t be a surprise if Ederson takes the next spot-kick, seeing as Pep thinks his goalkeeper is the best penalty taker at the club.
In between the 2-Premier League games, City have beaten Aston Villa in the Carabao Cup Final, gone to the Bernabeu and beaten Real Madrid by a 2-1 scoreline in the Champions League 1st-leg tie of their last-16 fixture and come away from Hillsborough with a 1-0 victory against Sheffield Wednesday in the FA Cup.
In comparison, Liverpool who will win the Premier League title, have lost their FA Cup and Champions League games in that period and their unbeaten run in the league.
City are still a massive 22-points behind Liverpool in the title race but do have 2-games in hand over the Reds going into this fixture against Arsenal.
Despite missing out on retaining their Premier League title, City could still win 3-trophies, with the Carabao Cup in the bag already and Pep will go all out to get the other 2 that City remain.
Arsenal’s last venture in the Premier League was a successful one, getting a great 3-2 victory over Everton at the Emirates.
The Gunners fell behind to an early Toffees goal until Eddie Nketiah equalised midway through the 1st-half.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang gave Arsenal a lead which looked like it would take them in with a 2-1 lead, however, 4-minutes into 1st-half stoppage time Everton equalised, to take both teams in level at the break.
Mikel Arteta must have given an inspired half-time talk, as within 30-seconds of the restart, Pierre-Emerick scored again and with no other goals in the half, Arsenal got the 3-2 victory.
Since that Premier League fixture, the Gunners have been dumped out of the Europa League but progressed to the Quarter-Finals of the FA Cup which realistically is the only way that Mikel’s boys can gain entry into Europe next season.
At the Emirates back in mid-December, Pep 2 wasn’t at the Gunners helm when 3, 1st-half goals from City gave Pep 1 the win.
Raheem Sterling scored one in between 2-Kevin De Bruyne strikes at either end of the half to give City the 3-0 victory.
Betway offer Man City at slight Odds On 3/8, the Draw at 17/4 and 13/2 for Arsenal to come away with all 3-points.
Betway offer 13/10 that Kevin De Bruyne Scores Anytime and Evens 1/1 that there are Over 3.5 Goals.
Home Win 3-1