Updated: Feb 15
Wolverhampton Wolves (H) vs West Bromwich Albion (A)
Head to Head: West Brom 2 wins Wolves 1 win 1 draw
The last time these two teams met in the premier league was in Feb 2012 and the Baggies had a memorable 5-1 away win against their local rivals. West Brom are fighting relegation but Wolves are off the pace too this season currently in a lowly 14th position on the ladder. Wolves manager will welcome back Wily Boly & livewire midfielder Adama Traore but will be without Raul Jimenez, Jonny, Marcal & Daniel Podence.
Prediction: 2-2 draw
Leeds United (H) vs Brighton Hove & Albion (A)
Head to Head: First meeting between the two teams in the PL.
Leeds will welcome back Diego Llorente but Kalvin Phillips will serve a one match suspension after picking up 5 yellow cards. Brighton are averaging 12.3 shots in a match in the 2020/21 season, their best in a PL campaign but only 28% of these shots have been on target, their lowest ration in a season in the PL. Leeds have won 2 straight at home and will be looking at making it a hat-trick of wins at home in the PL, the first time they will have achieved this since a run of 5 between April & August of 2001 under David O'Leary.
Prediction: Leeds 3-1
West Ham United (H) vs Burnley (A)
Head to Head: West Ham 6 wins Burnley 5 wins 1 draw
A classic mid-table clash of two teams that love to fight for the points until the last minute. West Ham have been super impressive this season under new manager David Moyes & are showing excellent defence with some fantastic team goals backed by individual brilliance from players. Tomas Soucek is a defender but leads all West Ham players in scoring with 5 goals. The Hammers will be looking at winning their first 3 games of the calendar year in all competitions for only the 2nd time in 28 years while Burnley will be looking to win a fourth consecutive top-flight match in London for the first time.
Prediction: West Ham 2-1
Fulham (H) vs Chelsea (A)
Head to Head: Chelsea 17 wins Fulham 1 win 10 draws
Scott Parker's first match in charge for Fulham was a 2-1 defeat against Chelsea in March 2019. This will be the first meeting between these two teams with English managers. For Fulham, Aleksander Mitrovic returns and could help the Cottagers to a win after draws in their last 5 games. Chelsea manager Frank Lampard is under intense scrutiny after 1 win in his last 5 matches and could be gone before the end of the season such is owner Roman Abramovich's lack of patience. The Blues have a fantastic record against the Cottagers, having lost just once in their 28 PL meetings (W17 D10).
Prediction: Chelsea 3-1
Leicester City (H) vs Southampton (A)
Head to Head: Leicester 11 wins Southampton 8 wins 9 draws
Leicester welcome back Jamie Vardy & James Maddison while Ricardo Pereira & Cengiz Under are also in contention. Jamie Vardy has scored 5 goals against Southampton in his PL matches against them, but all on the road. At home against the Saints, he has managed just 7 shots with 3 on target. Southampton will miss Danny Ings who is isolating and will be without Jannik Vestergaard, Nathan Redmond, Moussa Djenepo & Michael Obafemi but Che Adams & Alex McCarthy return to the squad. If the Saints hold Leicester goalless, this will be the 4th consecutive clean sheet for them since a run of 6 in 2016. This season, they already have 8 clean sheets, just one less than they had the whole of last season. The Saints will also be coming off a massive boost having beaten league leaders Liverpool in their last PL match.
Prediction: Leicester City 1-0
Sheffield United (H) vs Tottenham Hotspur (A)
Head to Head: Sheffield United 3 wins Spurs 2 wins 3 draws
The Blades finally won their first game for the season last week against Newcastle but come up against much tougher opposition in Spurs this week. Harry Kane & Son Heung-Min have a combined 43 shots on target which is just 9 fewer than Sheffield United have managed as a team this season. Spurs are devastating in the first 15 minutes with 8 goals scored and have the most first half goals (19) of any team in the PL this season while conceding the fewest (4)
Prediction: Spurs 4-1
Liverpool (H) vs Manchester United (A)
Head to Head: Manchester United 28 wins Liverpool 15 wins 13 draws
Match of the round and match of the season really. While Liverpool are where you expect them to be after being crowned champions last season, it is really the "Damn United" that are surprising everyone including myself. Somehow, with a mercurial Bruno Fernandes at the helm, the Red Devils are back on top of the premier league table. The last time the Red Devis were top when facing Liverpool was in Jan 2013 with Sir Alex Ferguson at the helm and they went on to win the title that season. For Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, this will be his 200th PL match in charge, having won 127 matches so far, more than any of his predecessors who have managed 200 games.
Prediction: Liverpool 3-2
Manchester City (H) vs Crystal Palace (A)
Head to Head: Man City 12 wins Crystal Palace 3 wins 5 draws
Man City are rounding into form at the business end of the season with 4 straight wins seeing them back in the top 4. While Frank Lampard has had trouble integrating his multitude of stars and performing cohesively, Pep Guardiola has managed to make his team work despite some early hiccups. Palace are looking to be the first club to win at both Manchester clubs in a single season since Liverpool in 2008/2009.
Prediction: Manchester City 3-0
Arsenal (H) vs Newcastle United (A)
Head to Head: Arsenal 30 wins Newcastle 10 wins 10 draws
A tale of two teams with vastly different fortunes. While Arsenal after a horrendous start to the season are on the way up, Newcastle are on their way down and predictably so. The Gunners have won 14 of their last 15 matches against Newcastle, losing just the one match. For Newcastle, Allan Saint-Maxim will be missing again and while Callum Wilson had a great start to the season as a Geordie, since the absence of Saint-Maxim in the squad, his goals have dried up. For Arsenal, this could be a tremendous opportunity to restore some confidence in their star striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang who could definitely use this match to score some goals.
Prediction: Arsenal 3-0
West Ham United (H) vs West Bromwich Albion (A)
Head to Head: West Ham 7 wins West Brom 4 wins 9 draws
The Hammers are unbeaten in their last 9 PL home games against West Brom having won 3 and drawn 6. The Baggies were impressive last match against their local rivals, Wolves winning a vital 3 points. Albion will be looking to win their first PL win on a Tuesday at the 30th attempt (D 13 L16). It is the most matches played on a specific day of the week without a win by a team in the PL competition.
Prediction: 1-1 draw
Leicester City (H) vs Chelsea (A)
Head to Head: Chelsea 14 wins Leicester 5 wins 9 draws
Leicester are building towards a fantastic campaign this season under Brendan Rodgers as they are currently 3rd on the ladder and could go 2nd with a win. Manager Brendan Rodgers has won against 33 of the 34 PL opposition teams he has faced but is winless against Chelsea in 11 meetings having drawn 7 and lost 4. Ricardo Pereira is back for Leicester but N'Golo Kante is out for Chelsea after a hamstring injury. both teams are evenly matched with 1.83 goals scored per match & 1.17 goals conceded. Both teams have lost 5 matches so far but Leicester have won 3 more games than the Blues. For manager Frank Lampard, a win would be vital to reassure billionaire owner Roman Abramovich that he is still the man to lead the Blues and secure a CL qualification spot.
Prediction: Leicester 2-1
Manchester City (H) vs Aston Villa (A)
Head to Head: Man City 24 wins Aston Villa 7 wins 9 draws
After early season form woes, City & Guardiola are on a tear having won their last 5 matches and upto 3rd on the league ladder. City will be without Sergio Aguero who is isolating and Aymeric Laporte who is recovering from a hamstring injury. Man City have won 14 of their last 15 matches against Villa including the last 10 scoring 33 and conceding just 4 in those games. Villa have won 5 away games (5) out of the 8 they have played this season which is the same they did in their last 49 away games (D8 L36). Jack Grealish continues to be a bright spot for Villa with 12 scoring involvements (5 goals 7 assists) which is the joint highest by a Villa player after 15 matches played equalling Dallian Atkinson's tally from 1992/93 season.
Prediction: Man City 3-1
Fulham (H) vs Manchester United (A)
Head to Head: ManUtd 20 wins Fulham 3 wins 5 draws
Fulham have Aleksander Mitrovic back in contention after hamstring issues but Terence Kongolo is a doubt while Bobby De Cordovia-Reed is out after picking up his 5th yellow card against Chelsea last match. Fulham manager Scott Parker has fixed their leaking defence with just 3 goals allowed in the last 5 games but has problems in attack with no goals scored in their last 3 home games. They last went 4 games without a goal at home in August 1969. Manager Ole Gunnar Solksjaer will be looking for a win to take the Red Devils back to top spot on the ladder. If the Red Devils avoid defeat at Fulham, this will match their record of 17 consecutive away games without defeat between Dec 1998 & September 1999.
Prediction: Manchester United 3-0
Liverpool (H) vs Burnley (A)
Head to Head: Liverpool 9 wins Burnley 1 win 2 draws
Could Burnley do the unthinkable, beat Liverpool at home and end their unbeaten streak at Anfield? The Reds will be the fifth different champions Burnley will face in the PL, and the Clarets have beaten the reigning champions on each of the reigning champions in the past when they were defending champions. For the Reds, Joel Matip returns but Diogo Jota is still sidelined. Liverpool need to start fast and will be hoping either of the front trio or all get involved in goals having gone without a single goal in their last 3 games. The last defending champions to go 4 matches without a goal scored were Leicester City in the 2016/2017 season.
Prediction: Liverpool 2-1
Aston Villa (H) vs Newcastle United (A)
Head to Head: Newcastle 22 wins Aston Villa 9 wins 15 draws
Both teams are coming off losses and loss fo form and sinking further down the table. For Newcastle, it's the same old story with injuries, a lack of goals and a porous defence means they have lost their last 4 out of 5 games. Allan Saint-Maxim will make his long awaited return since November for Newcastle and that could lift the other players particularly star striker Callum Wilson who has been quiet. Villa will be looking to keep 3 consecutive clean sheets at home in the same PL season for the first time since December 2012 under Paul Lambert.
Prediction: Aston Villa 2-1
Last Week: 3 out of 6
Overall season: 82 out of 175
Prediction Success: 46.7%