After the international break, we take a look at this week’s Premier League fixtures, including a huge game between Man City and Brighton, where City will be looking to bounce back from two defeats in a row, and an intriguing derby between Liverpool and Everton.
This Week’s Premier League Games
Liverpool v Everton
Bournemouth v Wolves
Brentford v Burnley
Man City v Brighton
Newcastle v Crystal Palace
Nottingham Forest v Luton
Chelsea v Arsenal
Sheffield United v Man United
Aston Villa v West Ham
Tottenham Hotspur v Fulham
Liverpool v EvertonEmbed from Getty Images
Liverpool come into this derby full of confidence. Not only is it a derby fixture that they very rarely taste defeat in, but they are flying high this season, and look a much better side than the one that face Everton last year.
They may have ridden their luck against Brighton before the international break. It was a game low on chances, with the game seeing just 7 shots on target between the two sides, 4 of those resulting in goals.
Liverpool returned to their attacking best just before halftime, as they overturned the 1-0 deficit with a brace from Salah. His two goals in 6 minutes cemented Liverpool’s position in fourth.
The break may have come at a good time for Liverpool, as it allows them to prepare fully for this game. It allows them to bring players back in from injury, and get them up to speed. Liverpool always thrive in these games against Everton, and very rarely struggles.
Everton, on the other hand, must hate coming into these games, especially at Anfield. They have had some horrible losses score-wise, and some even worse ones in terms of the goals they have conceded, the Origi goal springing to mind.
Whilst the international break may have come at a good time for Liverpool, it may have come at the worst time for Everton. Last time out, they looked a different side against Bournemouth, as they brushed the Southern club aside by 3 goals to 0.
It was a well-timed win for Everton, with it being just their second of the season, following a tough opening to the campaign. They would have been hoping to carry forward their form from that Bournemouth game, but the international break may have disrupted that.
It will be a very tough task for Everton to try and get anything out of this game, especially considering their recent form in this fixture, but they will be hoping Calvert-Lewin could make a difference.
I only see this going one way, and that is the way of Liverpool. They are too strong in this fixture, and they are miles ahead of Everton at the moment. A comfortable home win here.
Prediction: Liverpool 2 – 0 Everton
brentford v BurnleyEmbed from Getty Images
It is hard to analyse how well Brentford did against Man United before the international break. After 5 games without a win, Brentford went to Old Trafford with next to no hope of grabbing themselves a much-needed win.
But they came up against a United side rife with on-the-pitch and off-field issues, and took full advantage of that, as Jensen gave the visitors the lead in the first half.
The plan was being executed perfectly, until second-half stoppage time, when Scott McTominay managed to grab two goals in the space of 4 minutes to give United an unlikely win.
Brentford did brilliantly to give themselves the lead, and to hold on for as long as they did, but the issues they have faced all season flared up again, they just cannot hold onto a lead, and it is costing them dearly.
They are desperately missing Toney, and they will be a much better side with him in the team, but they really need to figure out a way to win games without him.
Burnley, like Brentford, have struggled so far this season. They have only picked up one win this season, that being their rearranged fixture against Luton Town.
Whilst Burnley is capable of scoring goals, as seen in their 5-2 defeat against Spurs earlier in the season, it is their defence that has really let them down so far. They certainly are entertaining to watch, but they are woeful at the back.
Last time out, they came up against a Chelsea side who had been struggling so far in the Premier League, and they gave themselves the perfect start when Odobert gave the hosts the lead early in the first half.
It all went downhill from there though, as one own goal got Chelsea level, and then Burnley collapsed in the second half. Just 5 minutes in, and Chelsea were ahead through a Cole Palmer penalty, and they never looked like getting anything out of the game after that.
Burnley needs to figure out how to win games, and fast, if they are to have any hope of staying in the division. They look a much better side with Lyle Foster in the team, but they cannot rely on one player to give them a chance of staying up.
This is a game against two poor sides at the moment, who could both profit from that international break. Brentford are typically better at home than they are away, but I think Burnley will come away with a point here.
Prediction: Brentford 1 – 1 Burnley
man City v brightonEmbed from Getty Images
Man City had not lost back-to-back games since 2018 before they came up against Arsenal, and when stats like that are presented, you just know that the odds are going to be against them, and surprise will be thrown up.
That is exactly what happened. In all honesty, from a neutral, fan perspective, it was a terrible watch against two teams. Neither side wanted to commit themselves going forward, and it showed with just 3 shots on target between the sides.
Tactically, it was magical though. Trying to watch two teams outwit each other, being tactically tweaked every so often to try and catch the other side out. It was always going to take a moment of magic, or a slice of luck, to win the game.
City were unfortunate to lose the game. It is never nice to lose a game due to a deflected goal, let alone one of this nature. They will not take these two losses lightly and will be looking to get back to winning ways, and in style, especially before the Champions League kicks in again.
After the chaotic 90 minutes Brighton played against Aston Villa, in which they lost 6-1, they came up against a rejuvenated Liverpool side, which may have slightly concerned Brighton fans, but it set up a fascinating game for the neutrals.
It was a game against two sides who were going all out against each other, and it certainly showed on the scoreline. Brighton took the lead after just 20 minutes, and it could have been a different score line had they gone in at halftime with the lead.
Unfortunately for them, their defensive issues reared their ugly head again, and they conceded twice in the last 6 minutes of the first half, sending them in at half-time 2-1 down.
They did manage to get themselves back level late on, but it was not enough to spur them on to win the game, as both sides had to settle for a draw. It does keep Brighton in the hunt for Champions League football, but their defensive issues are starting to become more of a worry.
This could be a brilliant game against two sides who love to attack, and with Brighton’s inability to defend, we could see a big scoreline here. It will either be open and expansive, or both sides will shock everyone a play out a tight 1-0 game. My money is on City here though.
Prediction: Man City 4 – 2 Brighton
Chelsea v ArsenalEmbed from Getty Images
Chelsea are slowly but surely starting to tick under Pochettino. Their issue for the past few weeks has been scoring goals, and before the international break, they managed to put 4 past Burnley away from home.
Whilst Burnley are not the most defensive team, Chelsea still had to put the ball in the back of the net. It was not just this that was impressive, but their overall buildup play. It was much better than in recent weeks, and some players, such as Sterling, are really starting to perform now.
It means that Chelsea has won two games on the bounce now, after beating Fulham the week before, and this could be the start of something special for them, should they be able to continue this form.
They just need to keep scoring goals. If they can get Sterling scoring each week, and get Mudryk back in form, they will have two wide men who can either create for Jackson, or get on the scoresheet themselves. Chelsea could yet be a force to be reckoned with.
Arsenal find themselves one of the only two teams in the league who have still not tasted defeat so far this season, resulting in them sitting joint top of the table with Spurs.
Last time out, they played their part in a huge game between themselves and Man City, a game in which there were very few chances and very little attacking threat from either side.
The game settled itself from a deflected goal, going the way of Arsenal, as Kai Havertz got his first assist of the season. It is a game where last season, they struggled, and may have lost the title in.
This season, however, they came out on top. Is this finally going to be Arsenal’s year? They may have beat one of their main competitors in City, but Spurs and Liverpool are two other sides they will have to watch out for this season.
With Chelsea’s recent upturn in form, this has become a much more interesting game. A few weeks ago, this would have been a straightforward Arsenal win, but now, it will not be so easy. I do still think Arsenal will come out on top, but it will be much tighter now.
Prediction: Chelsea 1 – 2 Arsenal
Aston Villa v West HamEmbed from Getty Images
Aston Villa played their part in a feisty derby day draw last time out, against Wolves. It was a game where Villa were expected to win comfortably, but derby days are never as straightforward as they seem.
It was a fairly even game between the two sides, despite Wolves’ poor start to the season. All the action occurred just after halftime, with Hwang Hee-Chan opening the scoring for the home side, but Villa hit back 2 minutes later through Pau Torres.
In the end, it was a good point, but those are the kind of games Villa need to be winning if they have serious intentions of finishing in the top 4 spots. They cannot afford to be dropping points against teams around the bottom of the table, derby day or not.
It has still been an impressive start to the season for Villa though, as they currently sit in 5th place after winning 5 of their first 8 games. If Emery can keep this form going, I do not see why they could not break into that top 4 this season.
West Ham is another side that will be looking at the European spots this season, as they will be looking to improve on their poor campaign last season. They have started well, currently sitting in 7th, and will be hoping to improve on that in the next few weeks.
Last time out, they played their part in an entertaining draw against Newcastle. Soucek gave West Ham an early lead, after just 8 minutes, but an Isak brace just after halftime gave Newcastle the lead.
There was time for late drama, however, as Kudus got his first goal for West Ham, equalising in the 89th minute, forcing the sides to settle for a hard-earned point.
It was another game in which West Ham struggled for possession, but still found themselves scoring goals in. It shows just how dangerous this West Ham side can be this season. They can hurt you when they have the ball, through Ward-Prowse and Paqueta, or they can hurt you without the ball, from set pieces or through their pace on the break.
This will be an interesting game, and it could point towards which team will be more likely to finish in those top 6 spots this season. I think there will be goals here, but home advantage will get Villa over the line.
Prediction: Aston Villa 2 – 1 West Ham
- Bournemouth 2 – 1 Wolves
- Newcastle 1 – 0 Crystal Palace
- Nottingham Forest 2 – 0 Luton
- Sheffield United 0 – 3 Man United
- Tottenham Hotspur 3 – 1 Fulham