Liverpool Clear at the Top of the Early Stages of the Premier League
We are now three weeks into the new season in the Premier League and already the fledgling table is taking on a somewhat familiar look. Just one team, Liverpool, have won all three of their opening games in the competition, with their closest rivals Manchester City winning two and drawing one, although that 2-2 draw with Spurs was a game City should have won comfortably.
The teams expected to chase them have already had their issues. Manchester United, Arsenal and Tottenham all went down to defeats this past weekend, while Chelsea were humbled 4-0 by Manchester United on the opening weekend of the season. Even just three games into the season, it is already looking ominous for those teams hoping to be genuine title contenders this season.
This weekend we have the teams in action once again in the fourth matchday of the Premier League season and it is a crucial one that comes just before the first international break of the season. Both City and Liverpool will be hoping to continue their solid starts in their games, a preview of which we have outlined below.
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Let’s now preview how the Premier League fixtures shape up this coming weekend.
Premier League – Matchday 4 (3pm Kick off unless stated)
Saturday 31st August
Southampton v Manchester United (12.30)
After a disappointing defeat against Crystal Palace last weekend, the Red Devils now face a tricky trip to a Southampton side that will be buoyed after their win over Brighton last weekend. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team need a win here but as Liverpool showed, St Mary’s is not an easy place to go and pick up a result. As such, I think the Red Devils could find this much tougher than they expect, even so, I am backing Man Utd to claim the win, even if it is only by a single goal (21/20).
Chelsea v Sheffield United
After defeating one of the newly promoted teams in Norwich last weekend, Chelsea now have the opportunity to do so again at home to Sheffield United. The Blades have made a decent start to Premier League life under Chris Wilder and I think they’ll mnake things tough for Chelsea, but I reckon the quality the home side possess in midfield and attack will ensure it is the Chelsea fans celebrating with the win at the final whistle (1/3).
Crystal Palace v Aston Villa
These two teams are two of the most difficult teams to judge in the Premier League as they are inconsistent. Palace should be buoyed by a brilliant win at Old Trafford last week but Aston Villa have proven tricky to beat and did beat Everton last time out. As such, I think this will be tight with few chances and a 0-0 draw looks the best bet here, as such the 12/5 on the draw is my pick.
Leicester City v Bournemouth
I think both these teams have started the season pretty well but for me, Leicester are the side with the classier operators. Bournemouth made it tough for Man City last weekend and they will draw strength from that but on the road at the King Power is a tough place to go, especially against a Leicester side that along with Liverpool, Wolves and Man City are the only unbeaten team in the Premier League. I expect the home town Foxes (4/6) to claim the win here.
Manchester City v Brighton
City have seven points this season but how they dropped two at home to Tottenham in what was the most one-sided 2-2 draw I have ever seen is beyond me. They confirmed the league title last season with a 4-1 win at Brighton and in truth, I cannot see them doing anything less than an equally big win, if not greater, against the Seagulls on home soil this time around. City are 1/12 to win this one for a good reason.
Newcastle United v Watford
After a dismal loss to Norwich, Newcastle looked to be in real trouble with a trip to Spurs next up for Steve Bruce’s team but a fine defensive display allied to Joelinton’s first goal for Newcastle handed them an unlikely win and a massive boost against an out of sorts and pointless Watford. The pressure is on Javi Gracia’s here and I think after this game which I am expecting Newcastle to win (29/20), the pressure will be even greater on the Hornets manager.
West Ham v Norwich City
Both these teams suffered heavy opening day defeats to Man City and Liverpool respectively but both have bounced back since. I do like the way Norwich are playing at the moment and West Ham were fully deserving of their 3-1 win at Watford last weekend. I think the Hammers greater experience will be the key here in a game where I do feel there will be plenty of goals but I am backing West Ham to win it (17/20).
Burnley v Liverpool (5.30)
Burnley have started the season very well and despite losing narrowly at Arsenal they then almost snatched a win at Wolves last week to add to their comprehensive home win against Southampton on the opening day. Liverpool though have won all three and though Burnley will make this tough, I do expect the Reds attacking prowess to be the difference here and for Liverpool to claim an away win (1/3).
Sunday 1st September
Everton v Wolves (2pm)
Both of these teams will feel that if they are to make further improvements on last season, they need to seriously threaten breaking the stranglehold of the top six and as such, this should be a tasty encounter between the two at Goodison. Everton were poor last weekend in losing at Aston Villa which suggests to me they are not quite ready to make that step. Wolves have drawn all of their opening three games and I feel they do need three points. I can’t quite see them getting it here though as I feel this has the hallmarks of a draw (23/10).
Arsenal v Tottenham (4.30pm)
The final game of the weekend is also the biggest as the North London derby rivals Arsenal and Tottenham face off at the Emirates in what should be a cracking and important early season clash. Both sides suffered their first defeats of the season last week, against Liverpool and Newcastle respectively but it will be Spurs that were stung the most by their shock loss to the Toon Army. Their record at Arsenal isn’t great and the Gunners showed enough against Liverpool to suggest they could be a real threat here. This will be close but I think a draw at 13/5 with bet365 is the best option.
*All odds shown were correct as of 12.30pm on Tuesday 27th August 2019 with bet365.