Newcastle vs Manchester United Preview: Revitalised Red Devils roll on

A few weeks ago Manchester United supporters may have been looking at their trip to Newcastle as a tricky fixture, which illustrates how much the club had struggled under Jose Mourinho this season, that an away fixture against a bottom half of the table team may be considered a difficult match.

However, there’s is a new sense of optimism now that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has joined the club, with three wins out of three since he was appointed.

Still, while United may be scoring more goals these days, giving them the best goal difference now than at any point previously, the defensive issues continue. There were things that Mourinho got wrong during his time as United boss but insisting that the club needed to follow in the footsteps of their rivals, and spend big on an experienced central defender, was not one of them. Read More

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Arsenal vs Fulham

Arsenal vs Fulham: Stunned Gunners seek reprieve against Ranieri’s men

It was a disasterclass for Arsenal. Poor clearance, sprawling defenders and harebrained challenges. The 5-1 shellacking at Anfield against Jürgen Klopp’s men felt like a blitz that the leaden-footed Arsenal players were ill-equipped to deal with. Liverpool’s menacing front three pumped in four goals before half-time after Arsenal had opened the scoring.

If Liverpool’s first goal could be explained away as a mix-up and an unfortunate ricochet that saw Roberto Firmino produce a no-look finish for the tap-in, the Brazilian’s second goal was symptomatic of the state of Arsenal’s defenders and defending. Bobby seemed to tap dance through the defence on an ethereal bop beat blaring within the Kop.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos went one way, Shkodran Mustafi went the other and Lucas Torreira’s hapless slip made it all worse. Sokratis and Sead Kolasinac gave away two penalties which Liverpool scored to complete the masterclass on how not to defend. Read More

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Premier League Fantasy Football Week 20 selections

You would’ve thought that picking Manchester City’s goalkeeper for a home match with Crystal Palace would be a safe selection, wouldn’t you? But these are strange days for the champions, and so Ederson contributed minus six points to our team last weekend. Cheers, mate.

Anderson, Hazard and Sané all hit double figures, but it wasn’t enough to put us among the cash prizes. Before we get to our fantasy football week 20 selections for Draft Kings‘ game, here’s the matches from which we need to select our side.

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Southampton vs Manchester City

Southampton vs Manchester City Preview – A Tale of Two Cities

It was the best of teams. It was the worst of teams. At least as far as the Premier League table was concerned.

It was Matchweek 16. Southampton had just lost 1-0 to Cardiff City and found themselves in 19th place – level on points with Fulham who were sat just below them.

At the other end of the table, Manchester City had fallen to Maurizio Sarri’s Chelsea, having been unbeaten in the league before that. Liverpool had managed to sneak ahead but, as everyone was saying, every team has to lose at some point and Chelsea seemed as likely a team as any to inflict first blood on Pep Guardiola’s team. City were still the overwhelming favourites to take home the Premier League trophy at the end of the season.

Since then, the tables have turned: recently-appointed Ralph Hasenhüttl has reversed Southampton’s fortunes, seeing them victorious against Arsenal and Huddersfield in his first four games in charge. Read More

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Crystal Palace vs Chelsea

Crystal Palace vs Chelsea Preview: Frontmen form makes it hard to predict

Chelsea are aiming to keep hold of fourth place in the table as they head to south London to face Crystal Palace on Sunday. Eden Hazard’s brace sank Watford on Boxing Day to send Maurizio Sarri’s Blues above Arsenal into the Champions League qualification places with half the season gone.

As for Palace, Roy Hodgson’s Eagles have climbed to 14th with seven points from their last three games, and a 3-2 win at champions Manchester City will serve as a warning for this London derby. This lad likes surprises.

Looking at Twelve’s leader board between both sides, we have a top five of Chelsea players. Of course Hazard is the leader, but after him, it’s a little bit surprising – at least to me – that defensive players are leading the Blues’ best performances. Read More

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Premier League team of week 19

Premier League Team of Week 19: Pogba Boxes Clever

Boxing Day often provides a feast of football; if you haven’t seen that image of the scores from 1963, where have you been? Enjoying your Christmas as you should be, nice one. Here’s our Premier League team of week 19.

Goalkeeper: Neil Etheridge. Crystal Palace 0-0 Cardiff City.

Cardiff are unlikely to pick up many points on the road – this was just their second in nine games this season – so Etheridge’s contribution to this one shouldn’t be underestimated. Read More

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liverpool vs arsenal

Liverpool vs Arsenal Preview: Expect(ed) Goals At Anfield

When it comes to this fixture, Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal never really recovered from a remarkable match in February 2014. Liverpool were four goals up inside 20 minutes, and the visitors were fortunate to ‘only’ lose 5-1.

The Gunners have picked up just two points from their four visits to Anfield since, conceding a total of 12 goals across those games. But since Unai Emery took charge, Arsenal have generally shown far greater levels of fortitude. Liverpool vs Arsenal certainly won’t be a walkover for the home side as it has been in the past two seasons.

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Premier League Team of Week 18

Premier League Team of Week 18: Jesse’s Full House

There were loads of goals this weekend – with 34, only the second week of the season can top it. We’ve got some goalscorers who would you expect, but which defenders emerged relatively unscathed from this goal fest? Here’s our Premier League team of week 18.

Goalkeeper: Ben Foster. West Ham United 0-2 Watford.

Foster was vital to the Hornets’ win in east London – he made seven saves, including two from clear-cut chances. Read More

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Tottenham Hotspur vs Bournemouth

Tottenham Hotspur vs Bournemouth Preview: No Showing Off Day

After crushing Everton 6-2 at Goodison Park, Tottenham Hotspur brought up a new sensation to the race. Now Mauricio Pochettino admits the title is a possibility, something he recently denied. Now he denies going to Manchester United, something he may admit within the next six months. But let’s enjoy the present.

No doubt Pochettino prefers his team with no burden on their shoulders – pretty much what we saw on Sunday, when Spurs’ fluidity outclassed Everton even in the face of a momentous disadvantage.

Spurs are no Manchester United, nor City. Nobody expects them to conquer the Premier League or the Champions League, since their expenditures in the last transfer window were not comparable to their rivals. Romantic as it may sound, Tottenham is a well-known tale about developing a way of play, instead of buying it out.

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