BPL Reviews week 5 Previews week 6

Evan Hatmaker, 23 Sports

Reviews  

In one of the biggest mismatches of the season, Manchester City thrashed Watford 6-0, routing the weaker side as they unleashed a torrent of shots led by Sergio Aguero, who got himself a hat trick. This game kept them even with Manchester United, as both sides are tied at the top of the table.  

Manchester United faced Everton as Romelu Lukaku visited his own side and Wayne Rooney returned to Old Trafford, where played for Manchester United for 13 seasons, and served as Manchester United’s captain in many of those seasons. Going into this game Manchester United where the favorites by far, boasting an impressive undefeated record and looming as titans compared to mid table Everton, yet Manchester United struggled in the 1st half, only scoring one and giving Rooney several chances to equalize, but David De Gea was able to deny his former captain’s attempts on goal. Everton’s defense finally broke towards the end of the second, allowing Manchester United to score 3 more to make the final score Manchester United 4, Everton 0. 

In perhaps one of the greatest matches this week, Chelsea battled Arsenal to a stalemate at Stamford Bridge. Even though this game’s score line lay even, this point marked a turnaround for Arsenal in their form and perhaps their season. Each and every team they have encountered has dominated the struggling Gunners to the point of utter hopelessness for their fans, who in turn have blamed the manager Arsene Wenger. In this fixture it would appear that Chelsea, currently one of the best teams in the league, would humiliate their once great rivals. The game showed quite the opposite as Arsenal controlled the game, showering the goal with shots and deserving the win as they had several unlucky finishes. David Luiz, Chelsea’s center back, picked up a red card late in the 2nd half, giving Arsenal yet another advantage that they couldn’t capitalize. Despite the score line, this game gave Arsenal back their form and perhaps the chance to turn around the season. 

In one of the most frustrating matches of the season, Liverpool drew 1-1 with Burnley, failing to take the three points that they desperately needed to challenge the top of the table. All in all, Liverpool had 35 shots towards goal while Burnley had 5 shots. This match, in the wake of Sadio Mane’s temporary ban, has shaken their form in the premier league and their position continues to drop. If they can’t turn their form around they will be struggling to fight their way to the top four. 

Previews 

West Ham will face Tottenham in what should be a straightforward match between two uneven teams. Tottenham look the clear favorites with Harry Kane looking in form with enough support around him to easily cleave through West Ham’s defense. Tottenham should be able to win by a sizeable margin.  

Burnley vs. Huddersfield represents an evenly represented fixture. Both teams are evenly matched and in similar form, while Huddersfield’s defense has been in impeccable form. To beat this defense Burnley will be relying on Chris Wood to break down this defense, and he has a good chance of succeeding. Despite this, I think this match will result in a close draw with both teams battling hard for the full 90’. 

Everton will be facing Bournemouth and in this fixture Bournemouth and Everton have both been struggling overall in their abilities to generate offensive opportunities, so this will be a very low scoring fixture. The player that will make the difference will be Wayne Rooney. There is increasing pressure on him to fill in the shoes of recent transfer Romelu Lukaku, and Bournemouth’s defense presents the perfect opportunity him to show his offensive skills. Everton’s offense, led by Rooney, should be able to net a goal or two to put Everton ahead.  

Manchester City is facing Crystal Palace, in a match that shouldn’t present any challenges for Manchester City. They are in great form and they have arguably the most well – rounded and versatile offense paired with a midfield that can provide plenty of opportunities for offensive players such as Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus while maintaining possession and providing defensive capabilities. Manchester City should be able to easily cope with Crystal Palace. 

Southampton will be playing Manchester United, in what may be a closer contest than what first appears. Southampton have a great defense and even though Manchester United have been able to win their last several games, their offense has been lacking. They have struggled to consistently score with Paul Pogba still out on injury, and the midfield has struggled to create opportunities for their offense. Despite this, I still see Manchester United as the favorites in this match with a narrow margin over Southampton. 

Stoke City will face Chelsea with Chelsea looking the clear favorites in this fixture. Stoke City have been in decent form, while Chelsea have been struggling in recent games and center back David Luiz will be out because of his red card against Arsenal. Despite this, Chelsea’s squad depth and the quality and experience of their players should be able to see them through to a victory. 

Swansea City will face Watford in an evenly matched fixture with no clear winner. I predict this fixture to end in a tie as neither team look the clear favorite, with comparable defenses and offenses that should contest to a stalemate.  

Leicester City will be facing Liverpool this week. This fixture will act as a critical point in the season as Liverpool struggle to regain their form that they had earlier this season. Surprisingly, I favor Leicester in this match as they might be able to get the upset by taking advantage of Liverpool’s lapse in form.  

Brighton & Hove Albion will face Newcastle United in a match that will be incredibly close as these even teams battle it out to a standstill. Both teams have started the season off extremely defensive which has affected both of their offenses. Most likely this match will result in a tie, but it will be a great match between two evenly contested teams.   

Arsenal vs. West Bromwich Albion represents another opportunity for Arsenal to regain some of the points they forfeited earlier in the season. Arsenal have been in great form following their 0-0 draw against Chelsea and West Bromwich Albion do not have the skill to hold off the determined Arsenal lineup. Arsenal should be able to coast to an easy victory.