We take a look at this week’s Premier League fixtures. With a focus on a key battle between Nottingham Forest and Burnley on Monday night. Bournemouth hosting an underperforming Chelsea and a big game between West Ham and Man City.
This Week’s Premier League Fixtures
Wolves v Liverpool
Aston Villa v Crystal Palace
Fulham v Luton
Man United v Brighton
Tottenham Hotspur v Sheffield United
West Ham v Man City
Newcastle v Brentford
Bournemouth v Chelsea
Everton v Arsenal
Nottingham Forest v Burnley
Man United v BrightonEmbed from Getty Images
What a game that was between Arsenal and Man United last weekend. The Red Devils will be disappointed to lose such a big game so early on in the season. They deserved nothing but a loss from that game.
In the first half, they scored against the run of play. Arsenal were running them ragged. They looked like they would concede every time Arsenal came at them, if not for Onana. Their lead was short-lived, as they conceded just a minute after Rashford’s goal.
They could have gone in front again in the second half, but Garnacho’s effort was ruled out for offside. It was the correct call, and once again, it was against the run of play, as Arsenal continued to dominate.
It looked as if United were on course for an unlikely point, based on the 90 minutes overall. But they suffered heartbreak in the end. Rice scored his first Arsenal goal since signing for West Ham. This giving Arsenal the lead in the 96th minute before Jesus scored on the counter to make it 3-1.
It was a collapse that United fans may be very well used to against the big teams. Frequently, last season in the Premier League. United performed well against the bigger sides. Only to collapse in certain periods of the game, and this game was no different.
Manchester United need to get their act together, and fast. Sancho has come out and addressed the media over the way Ten Haag has treated him. There are ongoing issues with Antony. It is all becoming a bit of a farce, and it needs resolving before United can press on.
Brighton were back to their best on Saturday against Newcastle. After suffering their first defeat of the season against West Ham at home. Their supporters may have been a bit more cautious coming into this game against a difficult Newcastle side.
Evan Ferguson really has started to look at home in the Premier League. There are numerous big clubs enquiring about him already. Many have suggested that he could be the player to replace Kane at Spurs. Whereas United fans wanted the Brighton man at their club.
It is such an exciting squad and one that can spring multiple surprises on any team. They will have another good season this year, and I cannot wait to see how well they do in Europe as well.
This is a very big game, especially this early in the season. A win for either side will outline the intentions of the other team. If Brighton wins, it shows they are serious about a top 6, or even a top 4 finish. If United win, it is a big step for them to get back on track.
It is hard to predict which way this one will go, but I think all the off-field issues will affect United in this one. Brighton to win.
Prediction: Man United 1 – 2 Brighton
West Ham v Man CityEmbed from Getty Images
Well, we certainly saw a different side to West Ham last week against Luton. I have been impressed at their ability to win matches despite being dominated on the ball, matching other teams shots on target despite having less than 25% possession.
Again Luton however, it was West Ham who saw more of the ball, for the first time this season, and they looked just as comfortable. They played the occasion perfectly and quietened the home side down on Luton’s first home game since their expansion.
It should have been a game West Ham won realistically, but they put in another convincing display. Jarred Bowen is on fire at the moment, as he scored his third goal of the season, and James Ward-Prowse grabbed himself another assist, as The Hammers ran out 2-1 winners.
How long can West Ham keep this up? Will they continue to contend at the top of the table? Will they eventually drop off? Or will they be somewhere in between, maybe a mid-table finish or a push for a top 6 spot? Only time will tell, and it is hard to predict at this moment.
I said last week I was a bit concerned about Man City having to play Fulham after their performance without Pep on the touchline, but they looked much more comfortable this time around, against much better opposition.
They took the lead against Fulham but were pegged back 2 minutes later courtesy of a Tim Ream goal. From then on out, it was all City. There were question marks raised over Ake’s goal that gave City the lead again, but VAR deemed it not offside, and the goal stood.
Then Erling Haaland was back to his best in the second half. Two goals from open play, and a goal from the penalty spot, giving him yet another hat trick. He really is a formidable striker on his day.
Overall, it was more of a clinical job for City against Fulham. They did not blow them out of the water, and Fulham more than matched them, but City’s superior finishing guided them to another 3 points, to maintain their perfect start.
Like the game between Man United and Brighton, this is a big test for both sides. West Ham can show the rest of the league how serious they are this season, whilst Man City will want to build on their perfect start. I think this will be an entertaining game, but a City win for me.
Prediction: West Ham 1 – 3 Man City
Newcastle v BrentfordEmbed from Getty Images
Newcastle are having a really hard time as of late, and things have not been going their way this season. Since their 5-1 opening-day win against Aston Villa, they have lost 3 games on the bounce.
They lost 1-0 against Man City and only had one shot on target, They went 1-0 up against Liverpool, then lost 2-1 against 10 men in added time, and, as of last weekend, have been battered by Brighton 3-1.
What is so different from last season? They have, near enough, the same team, with a few great additions like Tonali. Have teams finally started to figure out how to play against Newcastle?
It is a very bad time for them to be out of form, with their Champions League group being drawn, but Newcastle will be hoping the international break has come at the right time. They need to hit the ground running and start picking up points straight away.
Brentford, like Newcastle, have had a very unfortunate start to the season, but have fared slightly better. After 4 games, Brentford have recorded one win, and three draws, which is much different to their start last season.
Brentford were always going to be worse off without Ivan Toney, but Mbuemo and Wissa have both stepped up to the challenge. Wissa sits on 4 goals already this season, and if he continues at the rate he is going, he could outscore Toney.
What would be a good season for Brentford?
They will want to push on from last season’s Premier League run and improve, but a spot in the top 6 looks to be far too difficult for them at the moment. They may turn their attention to the Carabao or FA Cup.
With both sides desperate for wins, it is hard to predict how this one will go, especially coming just after the international break. With Newcastle’s inability to win a game, paired with Brentford’s ability to draw, I think this will end in a stalemate.
Prediction: Newcastle 1 – 1 Brentford
Bournemouth v ChelseaEmbed from Getty Images
Despite Bournemouth’s poor start to the season, they have surprised me. It was always going to be difficult for them, to bring in a foreign manager into a league he had never managed in before. It was always going to take a while to adjust.
After 4 games in the Premier League, they have not yet won, following 2 draws and 2 losses, but Bournemouth fans should not feel too discouraged about that just yet.
They put in an exceptional performance against a West Ham side who have gone on to win the rest of their three games. They led early against Liverpool and could have gone 2-0 up in the opening 10 minutes, and in their last game, they battled to a 2-2 draw away against Brentford.
Brentford were such a difficult team to face last year, especially away from home, and this result shows just how far Bournemouth have come from last year. If they continue to play the way they have done this season, the points will follow.
The international break may have come at the perfect time for them. They can regroup and correct the things that were going wrong, and we may see a different side to Bournemouth in their game against Chelsea.
As for Chelsea, it is becoming almost laughable now with the situation they are in. They spent a lot of money last season, and it did not work. They finished well below where they expected to finish.
Pochettino was brought in to help guide them back into the top 4, and they brought in a lot of players this season, spending especially big on midfielders such as Lavia and Caicedo.
Yet after spending so much money, and bringing in a new manager who has done well in every job they have had, they have lost 2 of their opening games, the latest coming in front of their own fans against Nottingham Forest.
Like Bournemouth though, the performances are there. They are creating chances, and they are entertaining to watch, they are just failing to put the ball in the back of the net. This is the most confusing part about Chelsea’s spending to me.
I said it last year every time I covered Chelsea, I do not understand, with the amount of money spent, why they did not go and spend big on a striker who can score 20 in a season, and it is the same against this year. It could be another painful season for The Blues.
With both sides coming back from the international break, it makes this game hard to predict. Before the break, I would have predicted Bournemouth to sneak it, but now, Poch will have had more time to drill into his team what he wants.
I do still think Bournemouth could edge this game and take the 3 points and I would not bet against them doing so, but I think Chelsea’s quality will start to show through here. An away win.
Prediction: Bournemouth 1 – 2 Chelsea
Nottingham Forest v BurnleyEmbed from Getty Images
I expected Nottingham Forest to be busy on transfer deadline day again this year, and they certainly did not disappoint. They got big money for Brennan Johnson’s transfer to Tottenham Hotspur, but he is such a big player to lose, and it will be interesting to see how they perform without him.
They did bring a few new faces in on deadline day too, and they have some really exciting options going forward. Elanga and Hudson-Odoi will be hoping that their moves away from their former big clubs will kickstart their career.
Elanga has hit the ground running at Forest. Despite being limited to a few substitute appearances, he has already grabbed himself a goal and an assist, his latest coming in Forest’s 1-0 win away against Chelsea, assisted by their main man, Taiwo Awoniyi.
These two players could be the difference between Forest staying up, or returning to The Championship this season. If both players can keep fit, and stay in form, then Forest could find themselves surviving a bit more comfortably this season.
Burnley are quickly becoming the entertainers of the division, but not in a good way. Their games guarantee goals. Their first 3 games of the season returned 14 goals, but only 3 of these have gone Burnley’s way.
The defence has been abysmal. But they have not exactly had the easiest of starts. They have already played Man City, Aston Villa and Spurs all at home, which is 3 of last season’s top 7. They will have easier games to play, and those are where the points will come from.
Despite the negative results, the impact Lyle Foster has had this season offers some hope for The Clarets. He has already scored twice this season, and his overall performances have suggested that the goals will continue to flow for him.
These are the kinds of games that Burnley will be judged on. Being away from home for the first time this season will not be easy for them, but if they want to stay up, they will have to pick up some points on the road, and there is no time like the present.
This is a game against two sides that could well and truly be fighting for survival come the end of the season. Forest has some experience in this field and will know how important this game is. Neither side will want to drop points, but both sides will desperately want points on the board.
I think with the form some of Forest’s players are in, such as Awoniyi and Elanga, we could see Burnley lose their fourth game in a row here. It won’t be as high-scoring as Burnley’s other games, but a loss either way.
Prediction: Nottingham Forest 2 – 1 Burnley
Other Premier League Predictions
- Wolves 0 – 2 Liverpool
- Aston Villa 2 – 1 Crystal Palace
- Fulham 3 – 0 Luton
- Tottenham Hotspur 4 – 0 Sheffield United
- Everton 0 – 2 Arsenal