Leicester v Liverpool
Despite their manager being one of the early season favourites for the sack and their main man Jamie Vardy currently serving a suspension, the Foxes have won two of their opening three games and have the look of a very solid mid-table Premier League outfit once again this term.
Although Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool haven’t been at their free-flowing best in their last couple of fixtures they have been getting the job done and sit on top of the Premier League. It may be very early doors but the Anfield outfit look every bit worth their billing as the Manchester City’s main title challengers this season.
I reckon Liverpool will come out on top at the King Power, but Allison will have his net breached for the first time this season.
Brighton v Fulham
It may be time to revise my pre-season prediction that Brighton would be relegated this season. Chris Hughton’s men recently defeated Manchester United 3-2 at home and although they lost away to Liverpool last weekend the Seagulls were impressive for parts of that game.
Fulham manager Slavisa Jokanovic will not just be happy with his side picking up their first three points of the season last week against Burnley, it will be the nature of his team’s performance that will please the Serbian most.
The Cottagers played some slick attacking football, with Andre Schurrle and the ever lovable Aleksandar Mitrovic looking razor sharp.
Fulham have however conceded seven goals in just three games, so I fancy the old onion bag to get a bit of a working out on the South Coast.
Chelsea v Bournemouth
Gary Neville labelled Chelsea a “club of madness” this week, which is pretty laughable when you consider that the West London outfit have actually won the Premier League in two of the last four seasons. That being said, although Maurizio Sarri’s side have won all three of their opening games, I for one remain completely unconvinced about playing David Luiz in a back four and N’Golo Kante’s positional change.
Bournemouth have started the season brilliantly, picking up an impressive seven points from their initial three fixtures, and Eddie Howe continues to show why he is such a highly-rated young coach.
It’s all about the goals market in this one lads.
Crystal Palace v Southampton
It’s two losses on the trot for Roy Hodgson’s Eagles, but they are still a solid outfit and in punditry speak: “They’ll be fine.”
Leslie Mark Hughes continues to blame everybody but himself his side’s troubles. However, the time for excuses maybe about to run out for the former Wales international and after he is inevitably sacked by the Saints in the next few months it is hard to see another Premier League club that will touch him.
Everton v Huddersfield Town
Marco Silva’s Everton could really be one of the great entertainers of this Premier League season. The Portuguese coach’s Toffees side are starting to resemble his old Watford side a bit: full of goals at both ends and with a questionable disciplinary record. Which I think we can all agree makes them perfect to be high up the running order on MOTD every week.
Although I think Huddersfield are woeful and will definitely be relegated, I did until recently have a soft spot for David Wagner and his magic hat. No more though, that soft spot has now turned to utter contempt after the Terriers let me down on a five-fold Acca against Cardiff last week that has meant I’ve been surviving on a diet of Spaghetti and shop brand pasta sauce ever since.
Toffees striker Cenk Tosun has looked sharp so far this season without getting on the scoresheet and I fancy the Turkey international to get off the mark this weekend.
West Ham United v Wolverhampton Wanderers
West Ham may be bottom of the Premier League table, but the Hammers did show plenty of promise against Arsenal last time out, with attackers Marko Arnautovic and Luis Felipe looking particularly impressive.
Seriously though lads, show me a man who says there’s currently anybody with a better beard in the Premier League than Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo and I’ll show you an absolute fool. The Championship Champions looked really impressive against the mighty Man City last week and I reckon they will make things awkward for the home side at the London Stadium.
I reckon both managers will be happy enough with a point here.
Manchester City v Newcastle United
Man City looked a little short of their brilliant best during their 1-1 draw against Wolves last week, but its pretty simple, if any team finishes above Guardiola’s side they will win the Premier League.
Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez got a lot of stick for his defensive tactics last weekend against Chelsea, but seriously what were people expecting? As my old Nan used to say “Pedro, you just can’t teach fat Spanish waiters new tricks.”
Cardiff City v Arsenal
Bond Villain lookalike Vincent Tan and his sidekick Neil Warnock have to be the most unlikeable Owner and Manager combo since Mike Ashley and Alan Pardew’s days together at Newcastle. There is simply no place in the Premier League for this dastardly pair and the sooner they get relegated the better.
Unai Emery may have got the first win of his Gunners reign against West Ham last week, but in truth the Arsenal were flattered by the scoreline, with the Hammers missing a host of presentable chances, due to the North London outfit’s high defensive line leaving them looking as loose as a clowns pocket at the back.
Cardiff won’t have enough quality to expose the Gunners defensive fragilities though and I would normally be backing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to get himself amongst the goals, but the odds of 2/3 are absolute tosh so I’m gonna steam into over 3.5 bookings in the game. With Xhaka on the pitch it’s like starting 1-0 up.
Burnley v Manchester United
Sean Dyche will surely be happy that the Clarets Europa League adventure is finally over and his side of grafters can get back to the business of thriving in the Premier League, where he can at least pronounce the names of the referees he moans about.
The grey-haired Sean Dyche’s position as Manchester United boss is coming under increasing threat after his side lost two of their opening three Premier League games, with reports surfacing yesterday that if the Red Devils succumb to defeat at Turf Moor their Portuguese coach will be handed his P45.
I’m backing United to just about win this one.
Watford v Tottenham Hotspur
Watford boss Javi Gracia is one of the favourites to win the Premier League manager of the month award for August after his s won all three of their opening games. This is, of course, the first summer in a while that the Hornets haven’t sacked their manager and signed about 427 players, but I’m sure this has nothing to do with their unlikely climb to the top of the table.
Spurs won just for just the second time in 28 visits to Old Trafford last Monday and although the North London club were widely mocked for not signing any players this summer, Mauricio Pochettino still has one of the strongest starting XI’s in English football.
Honours even for me Geoff.