Last weekends fixtures provided none of the shock results that categorised the opening weekend, however mother nature did provide one shock, an August Premier League fixture postponed due to a waterlogged pitch. As a result only 9 games took place over last weekend, and among the star performers were once again Swansea & Everton who continued their strong starts to the season with 3-0 & 3-1 victories respectively.
Chelsea also continued their impressive start to the season with a clinical display beating Newcastle 2-0 and Man United registered their first win of the season with a battling performance against Fulham, coming home 3-2 but in the process losing Wayne Rooney to an injury which could rule him out for up to 2 months. Arsenal, Liverpool, Man City & Spurs will all be disappointed with their draws from last weekend for various reasons and all four may well be looking to add to their squads before Friday’s transfer window deadline.
Chelsea will not be in action this weekend as they are competing for the European Super Cup on Friday evening against Atletico Madrid, this will provide Everton & Swansea with an opportunity to top the league going into the international break. So to this weeks fixture’s and confirmation of the results from the opening salvo of my season long battle with BBC pundit Lawro, Lawro did come out on top with a 7-5 points victory.
West Ham Vs Fulham
Both sides were unable to follow up opening day wins with victories last weekend. Fulham however can take great heart from their efforts against Man United where they could have feasibly grabbed a point. The likely acquisition of Berbatov will add an extra dimension to Fulham’s attack which already looks strong with the lively Petric. West Ham looked to have some serious issues defensively against Swansea and it was a not a typical Sam Allardyce team performance, gifting Swansea their second goal and they frankly offered nothing to match. West Ham may find the crowd on their back if they don’t up their performance levels in a game that their fan‘s will expect them to win, Fulham will also be confident of a victory and look the likelier to me. Prediction – 1:2
Swansea Vs Sunderland
Predictions of a tough season for Swansea (including from me) have been made to look unfounded by Swansea’s scintillating start to the season, scoring 8 goals without conceding. They look to have purchased a potential gem in Michu who has been at the heart of much of Swansea’s good work. Sunderland have been busy in the transfer window since their opening day draw with Arsenal, adding Adam Johnson and Steven Fletcher both of whom impressed in mid-week against Morecombe. Sunderland will likely line up differently to their defensive shape against Arsenal and on paper this looks to be an open game. Prediction – 2:2
Tottenham Vs Norwich
Both teams are without a win in the first 2 games and will feel aggrieved by that fact. Spurs looked to have grabbed the win against West Brom last weekend before conceding a late equaliser which punished their wastefulness in front of goal. Norwich also drew last weekend due to a controversial Bobby Zamora goal and they had the better of the chances in the match but failed convert that into 3 points. Norwich recorded a shock win here last season but I think they will struggle this time round against a Spurs side that looks due to click into gear. Prediction – 2:0
West Brom Vs Everton
It’s fair to say that David Moyes & Steve Clarke would have happily taken 6 points and 4 points respectively from their first 2 games before the season start. Everton have looked excellent in their opening 2 games with outstanding performances in both matches from Fellaini who looks to have hit the ground running this season. West Brom have been less impressive by capitalising on their opposition being wasteful in front of goal in both matches. Everton will have their sights set on maintaining their impressive start and on the evidence of the opening two matches will not be wasteful enough to let West Brom in with a chance. Prediction – 0:2
Wigan Vs Stoke
It’s very much a contrast of styles on show in this match, Wigan of the passing game versus Stoke of the direct game. Wigan bounced back well from their opening day defeat to Chelsea with a comfortable 2:0 away victory over Southampton, Stoke continued their frustration of Arsenal holding them to a 0:0 draw which definitely flattered them. To me Stoke look to have lost a bit of their edge this season and Wigan looked primed to take advantage of this. Prediction – 3:0
Man City Vs QPR
After showing their battling qualities against Southampton, champions City produced a stuttering performance against Liverpool from which they were fortunate to come away with a point. QPR were also fortunate to come away from Carrow Road with a point after being out pointed by Norwich. This game is a repeat of last season’s finale which saw City come back from the brink to score 2 last minute goals to be crowned champions. Such excitement is unlikely to be repeated but I anticipate City will once again be victorious. Prediction – 4:1
Liverpool Vs Arsenal
Liverpool produced a real Jekyll and Hyde performance last weekend they took their chances in front of goal only to gift Man City with both of their goals. Arsenal are still without a goal after their opening 2 games but produced an encouraging 2nd half performance against Stoke without capitalising in front of goal, Santi Cazorla looked particularly impressive. This game has traditionally produced goals and I can see this being continued on Sunday. Prediction – 2:3
Newcastle Vs Aston Villa
Newcastle have yet to hit the heights of last season despite their opening day victory over Spurs, Ba and Cisse particularly have failed to clicked into gear. Villa have endured a torrid start to the season, firstly limping towards an opening day defeat at West Ham before being routed by Everton at home last Saturday. Newcastle were extremely tough to beat at home last season and Villa look an impotent force in all areas so it would be a shocker if Newcastle failed to get 3 points on Sunday. Prediction – 3:0
Southampton Vs Man United
Man United got themselves on the board on Saturday with a sloppy 3:2 victory which highlighted their defensive frailties as much as their attacking prowess. Southampton are still without a point after they were beating in solid fashion by Wigan despite an impressive performance by Adam Lallana. Lallana alone will not be enough to get anything out of Sunday’s game as United will look to build on their victory over Fulham with another. Prediction – 0:2