Premier League Game Week 9 Preview : Liverpool aiming for history at Old Trafford
Premier League action returns after a dramatic international break and there are some intriguing fixtures and tempting prices available this weekend. Here are three results that look more than likely...
Chelsea’s bright young boys will demolish Newcastle
Chelsea are really starting to find their feet under Frank Lampard as an exciting, young, attacking side producing entertaining football for their fans and the neutrals alike. They still have frailties, especially without the ball and in defence, but that makes it all the more entertaining for those who have no dog in the fight.
Thankfully for the Blues, their potent forward players are making up for their weaknesses at the back. Tammy Abraham and Mason Mount have been absolutely sensational this season so far, being thrown into the first team on a regular basis for the first time, as young, untested players at this level, and they have risen to the occasion. Abraham has eight goals to his name and Mount has four, combined they have netted two thirds of Chelsea’s goals this season, and that is no small amount, with only Liverpool and Man City out-scoring Lampard’s men.
With the return of Callum Hudson-Odoi, Chelsea are only going to get more dangerous in attack, and the three English youngsters are going to cause Newcastle serious problems this weekend at Stamford Bridge.
The Magpies are an odd side under Steve Bruce, sometimes looking dreadful, other times actually quite impressive. They have two league victories this season and they have come against Tottenham and Manchester United, so they can get the job done, but they have also looked appalling against Norwich and Leicester in defeat.
Bruce can make things stodgy and that is what he will be trying to do in west London, but the speedy, aggressive attacking talents of Chelsea will be too much for them. Newcastle managed to blunt Spurs but Tottenham played at a tediously slow pace, something the Blues will not do. Expect Chelsea to win this one, and win it comfortably.
Resurgent Wolves to maul Saints
It was a tough start to the season for Wolverhampton Wanderers, but much like Burnley last year, this can be put down to their involvement in the Europa League early in the campaign. The travelling and competitive fixtures very early on don’t seem to make a team sharper, they just appear to wear them out and impact league results, and that cost Wolves over the first few weeks of the Premier League.
However, they are back in business and are coming off two big wins, the latter a stellar 2-0 victory away to Manchester City. One of the results of the season, Nuno Espirito Santo’s men will be coming back from the international break in high spirits and raring to make it three wins on the spin at home to Southampton on Saturday afternoon. It will actually be four on the bounce, including a fabulous Europa League win away to Besiktas in between victories over City and Watford.
Southampton also started the season in terrible fashion, with a terribly 3-0 loss at Burnley, things then seemed to pick up but they have turned a little sour again with three league defeats in a row, conceding nine goals in that time. Only two teams have conceded more goals than the Saints and their return of eight in eight themselves is hardly threatening.
Their two victories have come away from home so far this season, at Brighton and Sheffield United, but a trip to Molineux will be an entirely more difficult prospect at the moment. Wolves won this fixture 2-0 this season, and now they have found their feet we can expect something very similar this weekend.
Liverpool to pile more misery on Red Devils
Liverpool are unquestionably the best team in the country at the moment, while Manchester United are nowhere near the best team in their own city. While the Reds continue to march on, extending their winning run week-by-week, the Reds Devils seem to lurch from one disastrous performance to another with only brief respites in between.
Jurgen Klopp’s side have not even been at their brilliant best in recent weeks, but with all the other sides in the Premier League showing incredible frailties, they are comfortably the most consistent, even without shining their brightest.
They have now won 17 league games on the spin and can match the Premier League record with victory at Old Trafford. They last failed to win a league match in March when they drew with Everton and they last lost a league game in January away at Manchester City. They are relentless, and while recent wins over Leicester, Sheffield United and Chelsea have not been especially convincing, they just keep on grinding out the results.
United are incapable of grinding out results, performances, or very much at all at the moment. Their most recent defeat, a 1-0 loss at Newcastle, was one of the limpest displays ever produced by a Manchester United side. The Magpies are a below par Premier League team and they never looked like losing to United, as the visitors to St James’ Park looked completely devoid of ideas.
Some are expecting an embarrassing demolition for United, but Liverpool have endured a tough time at Old Trafford in recent years, despite them comfortably being superior to their old rivals in that time period. Liverpool have not won at Old Trafford since 2014, with six matches producing three United wins and three draws.
Having said that, the gap between the teams has never been so vast. United are at a dreadful nadir, with hopes of even reaching the Europa League positions looking dodgy, while Liverpool are favourites to win the Premier League title. With something of an Old Trafford hoodoo to overcome, we cannot expect a thrashing, but Liverpool will win this one and are good value to do so.
- Only two teams have scored more goals than Chelsea – Liverpool and Man City
- Only three teams have conceded more goals than Chelsea – Watford, Norwich and Southampton
- Newcastle have scored five goals in eight games this season, only Watford (4) have scored fewer
- Wolves have won four of their last five games against Southampton
- Danny Ings has scored three of Southampton’s five goals this season
- Liverpool have not won at Old Trafford since 2014
- Liverpool are the only side in the Premier League not to have lost this season, winning all eight of their games
- The Reds can equal a Premier League record (18) of winning games in a row with a win over Man Utd
- Manchester United are in their worst start to a season for 30 years
- Only three teams have conceded fewer goals than United this season – Liverpool, Leicester and Sheffield United