After a week of international games its great to get back to domestic matters and, what’s more, it’s a derby weekend!
Here’s how we see this weekend panning out.
Everton Vs Liverpool
Unbeaten Everton on top, play their local neighbours who, last timeout, had their backsides served up to them on a plate at Aston Villa who ran out 7-2 winners on one of the weirdest days on Premier League record.
That result then leaves us in the weird position that Everton go into this derby as favourites. You would have to think that Liverpool, who are hit with a few absentees, would bounce back with a vengeance but without Allison look vulnerable to say the least.
Plus, with the Toffees’ Dominick Calvert-Lewin in such a rich vein of form you get the feeling that Liverpool are unlikely to file another clean sheet.
Derby games are always tough to call though so a score draw with a red card will suffice for this first leg of our acca.
Celtic Vs Rangers
Another weird one next as Celtic and Rangers face off against each other for the first time behind closed doors.
Home advantage is usually massive in Old Firm games so the lack of a hostile crowd could prove to be something of a leveller for Steven Gerrard’s Gers.
That said, Celtic are the better of the best two teams in Scotland and I expect Celtic to win this one.
The score? As above, I leave derby day predictions well alone when it comes to score lines. But I think a Celtic win, BTTS, 2.5 goals and more than one red card isn’t too much to ask.
Blackburn Rovers Vs Nottingham Forest
Sixth place Blackburn Rovers await the visit of struggling Nottingham Forest this weekend in what will be Chris Hughton’s first game in charge of Forest.
A fortnight ago, Blackburn could only manage a draw against Cardiff, while Forest have been woeful, losing seven in seven hence the managerial change.
With one win in twelve, Hughton certainly has his work cut out and the head to head between these two tells us Blackburn have a superb record against Forest, winning five and drawing four in the past ten.
To be honest, I can’t see that changing this weekend or indeed anytime soon and a simple Blackburn to win should serve us well.
Manchester City Vs Arsenal
Mikel Arteta returns home in the Saturday evening kick off bringing his high flying Gunners with him.
Last time the North Londoners visited the Etihad, they left with their tails between their legs as City tore them apart.
This, though, is an out of sorts Manchester City who haven’t won in their last two games, while Arsenal can take comfort in a semi-final victory in the FA Cup and some good form.
The visitors currently sit fourth but with Guardiola desperate to avoid three straight winless games, I think Arsenal might well feel the full force of City’s recent frustrations. 3-0 City.
Tottenham Vs West Ham United
Jose Mourinho’s Spurs side probably didn’t want the international break to interrupt their momentum which took them a while to find before finding it they did and delivering six knockout blows to Manchester United in their last league game, winning 6-1 at Old Trafford.
That win also happened to come in run of nine league games in which they have only lost once.
It is unlikely that Tottenham will be worried by what West Ham bring with them for this London derby although the Hammers themselves are in good form, winning 3-0 at Leicester in their last game and a 4-0 win over Wolves before that.
Those wins though are their only two in twelve and Spurs boast the better record in this fixture. To that end, we can see a Spurs win and over 1.5 goals makes perfect sense.
- Saturday 12:30, English Premier League: Everton Vs Liverpool, over 2.5 goals, draw, over 1.5 red cards
- Sunday 12:30, Scottish Premier League: Celtic Vs Rangers, Celtic win, BTTS, 2.5 goals, 1.5 red cards
- Saturday 15:00, EFL Championship: Blackburn Rovers Vs Nottingham Forest, Blackburn to win
- Saturday 17:30, English Premier League: Manchester City Vs Arsenal, Manchester City to win 3-0
- Sunday 16:30, English Premier League: Tottenham Vs West Ham United, Tottenham win, over 2.5 goals