The Premier League Preview has EPL Tips for each match from the midweek round, including a big showdown between Manchester United and Tottenham.
History: Played 72: Bournemouth 29 V Crystal Palace 24 (19 Draws)
Last meeting: May 12, 2019 (EPL): Crystal Palace 5 d Bournemouth 3 at Selhurst Park
Final Thoughts: AFC Bournemouth hit the road in an attempt to break a three-game losing streak, facing off against a Crystal Palace outfit that just ended theirs.
Palace had gone winless for five weeks through a daunting section of their schedule but relished the chance to play a team more at their level on the weekend, scoring a 2-0 win at Burnley. It was 11th-placed Palace’s fifth win of the season.
Bournemouth have slipped to 12th after three straight losses to Newcastle, Wolves and Tottenham. They trailed Spurs 3-0 after an hour before Harry Wilson bagged two late goals for the Cherries.
Four of the teams’ last eight encounters finished in a draw, but both sides managed a home win over the other last season. Palace powered to a 5-3 win over the Cherries at Selhurst Park.
The Eagles’ home advantage and the momentum garnered from a solid Week 14 win should be enough to pick up another crucial three points.
History: Played 101: Man City 47 V Burnley 29 (25 Draws)
Last meeting: April 28, 2019 (EPL): Man City 1 d Burnley 0 at Turf Moor
Final Thoughts: Manchester City’s bid for a third straight title suffered another mortal wound in Week 14, twice give up a lead to be held to a 2-all draw by Newcastle. They are now 11 points adrift of front-running Liverpool. Injuries are biting hard at Man City: Ilkay Gundogan joins Sergio Aguero on the sidelines for this road trip.
Burnley sit 10th but are reeling from a 2-0 home loss to Crystal Palace on the weekend. The dismal result came on the back of consecutive 3-0 wins over West Ham and Watford.
Burnley have won just one of their last 22 against Man City and have managed only point from the teams’ last eight encounters. City carved out 5-0 home wins in EPL and FA Cup action last season, but at Turf Moor their league fixture finished just 1-0 in the Citizens’ favour.
Value is hard to come by with Man City red-hot $1.22 favourites, but the over looks to be a handy option.
History: Played 153: Chelsea 62 V Aston Villa 57 (34 Draws)
Last meeting: April 2, 2016 (EPL): Chelsea 4 d Aston Villa 0 at Villa Park
Final Thoughts: After winning six in a row, Chelsea have hit the skids over the past week and a half. A 2-1 loss at Man City fed into an inexcusable 1-0 home loss to lowly West Ham, leaving them 14 points off the Premier League pace. The Blues are sweating on the fitness of attacking spearhead Tammy Abraham.
Aston Villa, meanwhile, had enjoyed a significant upswing in their last couple of outings. They beat Newcastle 2-0 at home, before coming from a goal down to draw 2-all with Man United at Old Trafford. Those invaluable points lifted Villa to 15th and keeps the relegation zone at arm’s length.
Chelsea have won eight of their last nine against Villa – scoring 26 goals to six in the process. Aston Villa have won just one of their last 16 at Stamford Bridge.
It’s hard to see Chelsea dropping two games at home to two minnows in the space of five days, but Villa’s form – and their value as massive outsiders – can’t be ignored.
History: Played 67: Leicester 29 V Watford 21 (17 Draws)
Last meeting: March 3, 2019 (EPL): Watford 2 d Leicester 1 at Vicarage Road
Final Thoughts: Leicester City continue to blow any flash-in-the-pan notions out of the water. The second-placed Foxes are on a six-game winning streak, following up four straight clean sheets with a nail-biting 2-1 home win over Everton in Week 14. Down 1-0 midway through the second half, goals from Jamie Vardy (68’) and Kelechi Iheanacho (94’) keep Leicester’s run alive.
Watford – with just one win in the bank (at Norwich in Week 12) – sit bottom of the table again following back-to-back losses to Burnley (3-0) and Southampton (2-1). They scored first against the Saints but conceded twice in the last 15 minutes.
The last six encounters between these clubs were won by the home team. Leicester have won five and drawn one of their last six against Watford at King Power Stadium
Since a scoreless draw with Wolves in Week 1, Leicester have won six in a row at home. Though they have managed a win and a draw in their last three on the road, Watford don’t have the chops to halt the Foxes’ charge.
History: Played 191: Man United 91 V Tottenham 52 (48 Draws)
Last meeting: January 13, 2019 (EPL): Man United 1 d Tottenham 0 at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Final Thoughts: Manchester United continue to splutter, remaining in ninth after back-to-back draws with promoted sides Sheffield (3-3) and Aston Villa (2-2). Giving up five goals in two weeks as big favourites is a clear problem for one of the EPL’s big guns.
Tottenham are slowly turning things around under Jose Mourinho’s tutelage. Since ‘The Special One’s’ arrival, Spurs have climbed to fifth with consecutive 3-2 wins over West Ham and Bournemouth. They led 3-0 in both games, before conceding in the 73rd and 96th minutes of both – an area Mourinho will be looking to work on.
In the teams’ last 10 Premier League encounters, they both scored in the same game just once. Tottenham stormed to a 3-0 win at Old Trafford last season, before United turned the tables 1-0 at Wembley.
There’s nothing between the sides head to head and this is a very tough one to call. Lean towards Spurs.
History: Played 127: Southampton 49 V Norwich 40 (38 Draws)
Last meeting: January 18, 2017 (FA Cup): Southampton 1 d Norwich 0 at St Mary’s Stadium
Final Thoughts: A crucial encounter in the context of the relegation picture. Southampton and Norwich both sit in the bottom three but both have picked up a win and a draw in their past two games.
Southampton managed a shock 2-all draw away to Arsenal, before coming from behind to account for last-placed Watford 2-1 at home. Danny Ings sparked the comeback with a 78th-minute goal – his sixth in the Saints’ last eight games.
Norwich put a seven-match winless streak behind them with a 2-0 victory at Everton, before also drawing 2-all with Arsenal. It’s been a big turnaround attack-wise after the Canaries scored just two goals in their previous seven outings. Todd Cantwell scored in each of Norwich’s last two games.
Southampton are unbeaten in their last seven against Norwich at St Mary’s Stadium.
The Saints are hot favourites at home, but Norwich are a big chance of at least securing a point and look good value here.
History: Played 63: West Ham 29 V Wolverhampton 20 (14 Draws)
Last meeting: January 29, 2019 (EPL): Wolverhampton 3 d West Ham 0 at Molineux Stadium
Final Thoughts: Sixth-placed Wolverhampton have lost only two games this season. The flipside is their league-high eight draws with only four wins, but Wolves’ nine-match unbeaten streak deserves respect. After back-to-back victories over Villa and Bournemouth, they drew 1-all with fellow overachievers Sheffield last week.
West Ham snapped a seven-match winless run and climbed 13th with a stunning 1-0 upset of Chelsea at Stamford Bridge last week. A clean sheet was particularly momentous for a side with the fourth-worst defensive record in the league.
Wolves prevailed in both encounters with West Ham last season – 1-0 at London Stadium and 3-0 at home. They should be too good again in this one.
History: Played 284: Liverpool 119 V Everton 82 (83 Draws)
Last meeting: March 3, 2019 (EPL): 0-0 draw at Goodison Park
Final Thoughts: Liverpool remain undefeated with 13 wins a draw from 14 matches, their grip on the Premier League crown tightening as would-be contenders stumbled again on the weekend. Virgil Van Dijk’s first-half brace led them to a 2-1 win over Brighton in Week 14; remarkably, Liverpool’s only win by more than one goal in their past nine games was against Man City.
Everton have been a rabble this season, languishing in 17th just two points above the drop zone. They were beaten 2-0 at home by Norwich in Week 13, before an improved showing at Leicester on the weekend, going down 2-1 after conceding deep into stoppage time.
Everton are attempting to break a 19-match winless run against Liverpool – though 10 of those games finished in draws. Liverpool snared a 1-0 win at Anfield last season before the teams played out a scoreless draw at Everton.
Liverpool will win – the big question is whether than can wipe the floor with a struggling team, rather than squeeze out a close victory.
History: Played 124: Sheffield 49 V Newcastle 46 (29 Draws)
Last meeting: April 5, 2010 (Championship): Newcastle 2 d Sheffield 1 at St James’ Park
Final Thoughts: Surprise packets Sheffield are still clinging to seventh place and have not been beaten since Week 7. The Blades have pulled off three straight draws against more-fancied Tottenham, Man United and Wolverhampton in their past three outings. Lys Mousset’s second-minute goal at Molineux Stadium on the weekend was his fourth in six games.
While still only in 14th, Newcastle have won two and drawn two of their last five. The Magpies bounced back from a poor 2-0 loss at Aston Villa by holding Man City to a 2-all draw in Week 14, twice fighting back from a goal down.
Newcastle have won nine and drawn one of their last 12 against Sheffield.
Newcastle have lost four of their last five on the road – three of them to nil. Sheffield, who have beaten Arsenal and Burnley to nil and drawn with Man United in their last three at Bramall Lane, are the clear option here.
History: Played 19: Arsenal 12 V Brighton 3 (4 Draws)
Last meeting: May 5, 2019 (EPL): 1-1 draw at Emirates Stadium
Final Thoughts: Arsenal bit the bullet last week following a 2-2 draw with Southampton, sacking manager Unai Emery. Putting Freddie Ljungberg in charge failed to produce an instant turnaround, however, held to the same scoreline by another bottom-three outfit in Norwich City on the weekend. The Gunners’ winless run now stands at six games.
Brighton are in the midst of a very difficult section of the draw. They have lost three straight to Man United, Leicester and Liverpool after winning three of their previous four. Encouragingly, the Seagulls have only been held to nil in one of their last seven games.
Brighton managed 1-all draws against Arsenal at home and away last season, following on from an upset victory at Amex Stadium the previous season.
Arsenal are tough to get behind at present, but this home assignment represents a gilt-edged opportunity to get back on track.