Premier League Predictions Week 16

Reporter:

Nick Harrison

A packed festive weekend of football gets underway on Friday night and once again the Leader’s sports writers go head-to-head to predict the outcome of all 20 top-flight games.

With three points for predicting the correct score, or one for the correct match outcome (win/lose/draw), let us know your thoughts on this weekend’s action.

ARSENAL v LIVERPOOL

NICK HARRISON: Liverpool had it easy at Bournemouth but Klopp’s side are never two games the same. Playing away may suit them more these days and if Salah starts then they’ll win against an Arsenal team, who haven’t really got going this season. 2-3

TOM NORRIS: What a way to start the Christmas fixture schedule. Klopp will surely play his ‘Fab Four’ in this one and if they hit Arsenal on the counter like Manchester United did then this only ends one way. Will be interesting to see how Arsenal cope at the back. 1-3

DAN HEALD: How long can Arsenal carry an out-of-sorts apathetic Alexis Sanchez? He’s been a passenger for a while now and the Gunners miss his dynamism up front. Liverpool have the firepower to cause Arsenal problems and can win here. 1-3

 

EVERTON v CHELSEA

NH: Big Sam’s got the Midas touch and there’s no reason why his winning run can’t continue against the Champions. Chelsea have flattered to deceive lately while The Toffees seem to have that knack of turning average performances into very comfortable home wins. 2-1

TN: It comes as no surprise to see Everton winning games of football under Big Sam, who for my money gets unfair criticism. Conte looks a man keen to get out of Stamford Bridge and Everton can exploit that. Can’t see Chelsea winning at a canter like they did here last season. 2-2

DH: The Allardyce effect has been keenly-felt at Goodison with Big Sam taking 10 points from his first four games. Defensively solid, the hosts will prove a tough nut to crack and Chelsea may have to settle for a point. 1-1

 

BRIGHTON v WATFORD

NH: Hughton needs to be more adventurous while Silva needs to shore thinks up at the back. Have a nasty feeling that this will be a total shut-out and both managers may just settle for that. 0-0

TN: If Watford can keep all of their players on the pitch then they have a really good chance of winning this one. Brighton are solid but unspectacular, so may not leave the likes of Richarlison the space he’s used to away. 1-1

DH: Brighton fans were in raptures at joining the Premier League elite but Hughton’s understandably cautious approach has yielded little excitement. Watford have struggled of late and were embarrassed at Huddersfield so a point would stop the rot. 1-1

 

MANCHESTER CITY v BOURNEMOUTH

NH: City were outstanding against Tottenham and expect a festive goalfest at The Etihad Stadium where Sane, Sterling, Aguero and the brilliant De Bruyne will all score in another Manchester masterclass. 6-0

TN: Talk of City going the whole season unbeaten is more than a tough premature, but Bournemouth won’t be the side to end that run. Whoever Pep picks for this one will have more than enough to cruise to victory. 5-0

DH: Poor Bournemouth. Expectant City fans will fill the Etihad to witness some champagne football from

Guardiola’s side and I can’t seem them going home disappointed. De Bruyne’s imperious form to continue in another emphatic win.5-1

 

SOUTHAMPTON v HUDDERSFIELD TOWN

NH: Huddersfield might have used their away-goal quota for the season at Watford a week ago. They grabbed four at Vicarage Road but may struggle to get one at St Mary’s where the home side will bounce back with a win. 2-0

TN: Having spent Saturday afternoon with some Huddersfield fans it was obvious that they didn’t expect to win, or even score, at Watford. Can they do it again? It’s unlikely they will with the home side on top. 2-0

DH: Southampton have occupied their mid-table comfort zone for much of the season but the chasing pack are gaining ground. A 4-1 win at Watford should hearten Huddersfield ahead of another winnable away game. 1-1

 

STOKE CITY v WEST BROM

NH: The lights went out and the players switched off at Stoke last week. Now Sparky, who isn’t under any pressure from the Stoke City board, needs to brighten the spirits of Potters fans with a much-needed victory. Can’t see it. 1-1

TN: The pressure is mounting on Hughes, who needs to sort out Stoke’s awful defence. The Baggies have looked more assured in recent weeks and they gave Manchester United a test for large parts at the weekend. 1-2

DH: Potters fans have turned on Hughes’ side in recent weeks and Pardew will know the importance of frustrating the home faithful here. Back the Baggies to heap more misery on the hosts. 1-2

 

SWANSEA CITY v CRYSTAL PALACE

NH: The Swans didn’t play that badly at Everton while Palace were exceptionally good at Leicester. If Hodgson’s team can produce an action replay at the Liberty, then it won't be a good start to the post-Clement area. 1-2

TN: If Palace play like they did against Leicester then this ends with Roy’s boys celebrating three points. Palace are set up to counter with Zaha, Townsend and Schlupp and it’s working. Swansea need to be careful. 0-2

DH: The Swans hierarchy have blundered consistently since sacking Garry Monk two years ago and Clement is now the latest manager to fail is South Wales. Palace are a side reborn under Hodgson and Benteke can flourish here after ending his drought. 1-2

 

WEST HAM UNITED v NEWCASTLE UNITED

NH: A great time for The Hammers to put on a show at the London Stadium. The Magpies are in freefall while Moyes’ boys are showing belief in all areas. 3-0

TN: I’ve said it before, I like what Moyes is doing and the results are starting to show. Newcastle have a

Championship quality squad and that will tell here with Arnautovic and Antonio causing havoc. 2-0

DH: Hammers fans rejoice, Moyes has got your team looking like a Premier League side once more. Contrast that with a Newcastle side that have taken a solitary point from their last nine games. 3-1

 

BURNLEY v TOTTENHAM

NH: Spurs have had a lot of praise over the past two seasons but their gameplan at City was hopeless. Everyone knows what Burnley are going to do at Turf Moor but has Pochettino and his talented Tottenham team got the nous to pick up three points? Yes. 1-2

TN: The biggest disappointment of the weekend was Spurs’ performance at City. Where was the intensity that we’ve become accustomed to? Burnley will relish this and I fancy Dyche’s men to pick up a positive result. 1-1

DH: On paper this should be a cakewalk for Spurs, but Burnley’s fine defensive record is a credit to Sean Dyche’s man management and tactical judgement. The Clarets to stifle the visitors and emerge with a point. 1-1

 

LEICESTER CITY v MANCHESTER UNITED

NH: Two teams who like to counter-attack so it should be end-to-end. United have the players to beat Leicester but The Foxes have the ability to rise to the occasion and they may just do that at the King Power. 2-1

TN: Leicester will play on the counter, because that’s what they are good at, so it’s up to United to stamp their authority on proceedings. The Foxes have to take their chances when they come along. 1-2

DH: A tough result to call, but the presence of Vardy and Mahrez can pose United as many problems as they’ll cause the hosts. I’ll go for an absorbing score draw. 2-2

BOXING DAY PREDICTIONS

Tottenham v Southampton: NH: 3-1; TN: 2-0; DH 3-0

Bournemouth v West Ham: NH: 2-2; TN: 1-2; DH 1-2

Chelsea v Brighton: NH: 3-0; TN: 3-0; DH 3-1

Huddersfield v Stoke City: NH: 2-1; TN: 2-0; DH 1-0

Manchester United v Burnley: NH: 2-0; TN: 1-0; DH 2-1

Watford v Leicester City: NH: 2-2; TN: 1-2; DH 1-2

West Brom v Everton: NH: 1-1; TN: 1-2; DH

Liverpool v Swansea City: NH: 4-0; TN: 3-0; DH 4-1

Newcastle v Manchester City: NH: 1-4; TN: 0-4; DH 1-3

Crystal Palace v Arsenal: NH: 2-1; TN: 1-1; DH 1-2

Email:

nick.harrison@nwn.co.uk

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