The visit of Chelsea to Old Trafford on Sunday and the Carabao Cup Final between Arsenal and Manchester City later in the day are the highlights of another wonderful weekend of action.
Brand Ambassador Michael Owen again shared his thoughts exclusively with BetVictor.
Leicester City v Stoke City
Leicester City have only lost one of their eight Premier League home games under Claude Puel and I expect them to improve on that record against a Stoke City side who begin the weekend just one place off the foot of the table.
Stoke have gone eight away games in the Premier League without a win although they did play well in the first half at the Vitality Stadium in their last away game. Jamie Vardy has scored in three of his five Premier League games against the Potters including in the last two at the King Power Stadium.
Prediction: Leicester City 2-1 Stoke City
Bournemouth v Newcastle United
Eddie Howe’s side host Newcastle at Dean Court (Picture: Getty)Bournemouth have won their last three Premier League home games, but I feel they may have to settle for a point against a Newcastle side who defended well and took their opportunity in a terrific win against Manchester United last time.
The Cherries will make club history – a fourth successive home win in the Premier League – if they beat United but I feel the Magpies will take a point back home from the south coast.
Prediction: Bournemouth 1-1 Newcastle United
Brighton v Swansea City
Glenn Murray is one of Brighton’s key players for the remainder of the campaign (Picture: Getty)Swansea have won 14 points in seven games since Carlos Carvalhal took charge at the Liberty Stadium and if there is to be a winner at the Amex I feel the Swans might take all three points.
Only three Englishmen (Kane, Sterling and Rooney) have scored more Premier League goals than Brighton’s Glenn Murray (8) has so far this season and the striker has found the back of the net with three of his last four shots.
His goals between now and the end of the season will play a crucial part in the Seagulls’ fight to maintain their Premier League status.
Prediction: Brighton 1-2 Swansea City
Burnley v Southampton
Mauricio Pellegrino is under pressure at Southampton (Picture: Getty)Turf Moor averages just over two goals per game in the history of the Premier League and I expect to see another tight, close affair at the weekend.
If we are to see a goal that might be enough to split the teams and it is worth noting that the Clarets have only picked up five points from the last thirty on offer.
Prediction: Burnley 0-0 Southampton
Liverpool v West Ham
Mohamed Salah will be bursting with confidence ahead of the clash with West Ham (Picture: Getty)West Ham went 45 games without a win at Liverpool before August 2015 but they are unbeaten in their last three ahead of the Hammers’ visit to Anfield.
That said the Reds have scored four in their last two Premier League games against the Irons and it should be noted that West Ham boss David Moyes is without a win in 14 previous visits to Anfield as a manager with Everton, Manchester United and Sunderland. I cannot see past a home win.
Prediction: Liverpool 3-1 West Ham
West Brom v Huddersfield
Alan Pardew’s side have lost their last four matches in all competitions (Picture: Getty)A must win game for bottom-of-the-table West Brom who go into the weekend five points adrift of Stoke who are one place in front of the Albion.
The Baggies have had their share of Great Escapes in the past and they will never give up, but I think they need to gain all three points to have a realistic chance of survival and I feel they will.
The atmosphere is likely to be a very tense and an early goal might calm the nerves for the locals at the Hawthorns.
Prediction: West Brom 1-0 Huddersfield
Watford v Everton
Everton’s squad have been training in Dubai (Picture: Getty)There were five goals and a missed penalty in the reverse fixture at Goodison back in November and I think both sides will find the back of the net at Vicarage Road.
The Blues have shipped at least four in their last two away league games and you have to go back to February 1961 for the last time Everton conceded four or more goals in three successive away league games. I would suggest Sam Allardyce has been working on the Blues’ defensive shape and system in Dubai where the players enjoyed some warm-weather training last week.
Prediction: Watford 1-1 Everton
Manchester United v Chelsea
Willian has scored three goals in two matches for the Blues (Picture: Getty)Chelsea will be looking to do the double over Manchester United for the fourth time in Premier League history at Old Trafford, but they were beaten 4-1 at Watford in their last away league game and they remain vulnerable at present despite the brilliance of Eden Hazard and Willian.
I do not expect to see many goals in what promises to be a tight tense affair – on and off the pitch.
Prediction: Manchester United 1-1 Chelsea
Crystal Palace v Tottenham
Can Crystal Palace stop Harry Kane scoring at Selhurst Park? (Picture: Getty)Crystal Palace have lost their last five Premier League games against Spurs and Harry Kane has scored twice and had one assist in his three Premier League appearances at Selhurst Park. Eagles’ boss Roy Hodgson needs to find a way to keep the England striker quiet but that is easier said than done.
Spurs have picked up more league points than any other side so far in 2018 (15) and are the only side unbeaten in the Premier League so far this year. Palace have only kept one clean sheet in their last 27 London derbies and Spurs are likely to be too classy for the hosts on Sunday.
Prediction: Crystal Palace 0-2 Tottenham
League Cup Final
Arsenal v Manchester City
Arsene Wenger and Pep Guardiola come face-to-face at Wembley (Picture: Getty)The first time these clubs have met in a major final although Arsenal have beaten City on the two previous occasions they have met at Wembley in the 2014 Community Shield and last season’s FA Cup semi-final.
Pep Guardiola has only lost one of his six previous major finals and I think City can bounce back after their shock reverse to Wigan Athletic in the FA Cup earlier in the week.
I expect to see chances at both ends but it is City to land their first but not last piece of silverware this season.
Prediction: Arsenal 1-3 Manchester City
Michael’s weekend wager: Leicester West Brom and Liverpool at 7/2
Michael Owen is a Brand Ambassador for BetVictor. For more tips from Michael read his column here.
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