In the unfolding of the story of this Premier League season, it feels as if every single match is becoming more and more difficult to predict. Saturday’s matches could completely change the look of the middle of the Premier League table, but most attention this weekend will be towards the matches on Sunday between Burnley and Chelsea and Everton at Manchester United. This schedule saves its best for last, with Monday featuring Tottenham hosting first-place Manchester City.
These matches do bring potential for some change at the top and bottom of the Premier League table, the first possibly coming from Sunday’s match-up between Burnley and Chelsea. Can Burnley improve their situation against the might of Chelsea? Let’s find out more in this preview of the Sunday and Monday matches this Premier League weekend.
Burnley vs Chelsea
Although one would normally expect Burnley to put up a challenge for Chelsea, this season has not been going too well for them. Burnley sits in thirteenth place on just eight points. They have registered only two wins, and last week they were handed a 5-0 thrashing at the hands of table-leaders, Manchester City.
There is some good news for Burnley, however. That being the unlikeliness of Eden Hazard playing tomorrow. Hazard suffered a minor injury in the Europa League against BATE. The Belgian, who boasts eight goals this season, might have to sit this fixture out.
But Burnley isn’t immune from injuries. Robbie Brady, Ben Gibson and Nick Pope will all have to sit out, making Burnley very vulnerable to Chelsea’s attack.
If Chelsea can win this, they could go atop of the table, but Burnley would really want to improve from thirteenth to twelfth place. Unfortunately, with all the injuries and Chelsea’s scintillating fire power, Burnley’s wish may just be unrealistic right now.
Prediction: Burnley 0-3 Chelsea
Manchester United vs Everton
This might be the first time in years in which Everton are positioned higher in the table than Manchester United before this fixture. Manchester United, of course, will want to change that, and a win will move them from tenth to sixth place in the table.
Manchester United fans will be desperate for a win here because of both the past and the future. Manchester United, who are stuck at tenth, have only won once in their last three matches, and that coming from a losing position at half-time against Newcastle United.
What is unfortunate for Manchester United is the large presence of injured players, which can make the Manchester United line-up weak. Although some of these players could return, Alexis Sanchez, Jesse Lingard, Phil Jones, Scott McTominay, Diogo Dalot and Marouane Fellaini could just as easily miss out due to injury concerns.
Everton are coming off of a 2-0 win against Crystal Palace, so Manager Sam Allardyce will be looking to use those same resources in tackling Manchester United. This means that Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Cenk Tosun, Gylfi Sigurddson, Richarlison and former Manchester United defender, Michael Keane, will fancy being in the Starting XI Sunday. Everton may not necessarily be as strong as Manchester United, but Manchester United are at a much weaker point right now in the season and may find it difficult to beat Everton.
Prediction: Manchester United 2-2 Everton
Tottenham Hotspurs vs Manchester City
This match at Wembley Stadium in London on Monday could change the face of the top of the Premier League table. If Tottenham gets a win, they could knock Manchester City out of first and possibly go atop of the table themselves. If Manchester City gets a win, they could extend their lead at the top of the table to six points, a massive step ahead.
Coming into this fixture, Manchester City have played it smart. They rested Kevin De Bruyne, Sergio Aguero and Kyle Walker throughout the week. All three could be set for a return on Monday. John Stones has been excellent at full back and can partner with Nicholas Otamendi and Aymeric Laporte in defense. Up front, Manchester City has too many options, but the versatility of Raheem Sterling and the in-form services of Riyad Mahrez might be enough to beat Tottenham.
Tottenham’s defense will only be further troubled as Jan Vertonghen and Danny Rose are set to miss the fixture due to injury. On the bright side, Dele Alli could finally return and challenge Manchester City.
Tottenham will be playing at home, but Manchester City’s full strength squad and the absence of two key defenders will make this more difficult than it seems for the home side. Manchester City will probably return home with a win, but Tottenham could still retain their fifth place position.
Prediction: Tottenham Hotspurs 1-3 Manchester City
Other Sunday English Premier League Prediction:
Crystal Palace 1-2 Arsenal