Our first pick of the weekend, Premier League matchday three to be precise, comes from the Premier League midday Saturday kick off which sees Brighton host Manchester United. We also have a number of picks from the Scottish Premier League and EFL Championship.
Brighton vs Manchester United
While I don’t think United fans need to over react just yet, it’s hard to be impressed with their performance against Luton Town in the week.
The players looked unconvincing and once again needed a penalty to get them going. Following on from an embarrassing defeat at home a week ago to Crystal Palace, this could be another uncomfortable weekend for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and his players.
Brighton, on the other hand, were highly impressive in their away win at Newcastle last weekend. One concern for the Seagulls though will be the late red card that was shown to Yves Bissouma ruling him out of this match.
United have won the last three meetings between these teams but are looking for their first points of the season and the mood, amplified by a so far disappointing transfer window, is sagging at Old Trafford.
But Brighton won’t roll over easy and this one could well end in a tie. That said, I’m banking on a home win and both teams to score.
Derby County Vs Blackburn Rovers
Derby County are on the hunt for a first win of the season against a Blackburn Rovers side who won 5-0 last weekend against newly promoted Wycombe Wanderers.
Blackburn have looked impressive in both of their opening fixtures and will be fully aware that Phillip Cocu’s Rams have scored just once in their two league games so will be fully confident of stretching their 100% record to a third game.
Derby lost 2-1 to Luton Town on Saturday and have re-signed Jordan Ibe to breath some life into their faltering start but it may not be enough against a superior Rovers.
Cardiff City Vs Reading
Neil Harris’ Cardiff City were very impressive in their win over Nottingham Forest last time out but this week take on a table topping Reading side who are yet to concede a goal this season.
Last time out, the Royals recorded another 2-0 win, this time over Barnsley. So, while the form lies with the visitors, I would not expect the Bluebirds to roll over and a score draw could very well beckon.
Motherwell Vs Rangers
After dropping two points in a 2-2 draw with Hibernian, league leaders Rangers have Celtic breathing down the neck and need to return to winning ways.
Steven Gerrard’s men are only one point clear at the top and are visiting a Motherwell on high from their 3-0 win over Aberdeen last week.
As a consequence, the Dons will be brimming with confidence and hopes of taking a point off Gers will be rightly buoyed by Rangers’ tepid display in the draw with the Hibs.
Tottenham vs Newcastle
Newcastle have had a Jekyll and Hyde start to the season, winning well and losing heavily. Which one will turn up Sunday is anyone’s guess.
Spurs haven’t been much different to be fair and, while I expect them to win this one, they have also lost one won one, again heavily. OK, there home defeat to Everton a fortnight ago wasn’t a heavy one but the manner of their lacklustre performance will be of concern even after slotting five past Southampton last week.
The arrival of Gareth Bale should provide the whole club with a boost, however, and this looks like a home win.
Celtic Vs Hibernian
Last time out, Celtic beat Livingston 3-2 leaving them just a point behind Rangers at the top with a game in hand and now welcome third place Hibs who took a point of Rangers last weekend.
Celtic boss Neil Lennon is unhappy with his side’s defending right now and against a Hibs team that also know how to find the back of the net, I can see plenty of goals in this one.
I believe Celtic will win and that both teams will score.
Liverpool Vs Arsenal
Arsenal look a different side to how they did just months ago as Mikel Arteta begins to turn the club around. A win on penalties against Monday’s opponents Liverpool in the Community Shield followed a win over Jurgen Klopp’s men at the back end of last season.
That win though came against a Liverpool team that, with the title already in the bag, looked that they were already on their break.
Now that real football has returned so, it would appear, have the real Liverpool who look to be back in business and at Anfield are nothing short of imperious. Given the home form of the champions, there is no reason to back Arsenal against a Liverpool team that comfortably dismissed Chelsea a week ago.
Both of these teams have a 100% record so far but one of these must fall on Monday and it looks like it will be Arsenal’s.
- Saturday 12:30, English Premier League: Brighton to Win vs Manchester United and BTTS
- Saturday 15:00, EFL Championship: Derby County Vs Blackburn Rovers to Win plus 2.5
- Saturday 15:00, EFL Championship: Cardiff City Vs Reading 1-1
- Sunday 12:00, Scottish Premier League: Motherwell to Draw Vs Rangers
- Sunday 14:00, English Premier League: Tottenham to Win vs Newcastle
- Sunday 15:00, Scottish Premier League: Celtic to Win Vs Hibernian and BTTS
- Monday 19:15, English Premier League: Liverpool to Win Vs Arsenal plus 2.5