I’m Back, So to the Weekend’s Action!By: Rob | November 19th, 2010
I realise I’ve been a bit AWOL here at the Premier League offside, and i can only apologise and hope it never happens again, and that i’ll be even better than before. I did say hope, not promise.
A good weekend of Premier League action ahead, but one game really is the must watch – the North London derby between Arsenal and Spurs. Arsenal look like they might finally be coming together, and getting through an international week without 74 injuries is surely a massive improvement on the usual status quo.
Last season in this fixture, Arsenal absolutely knocked the stuffing out of Spurs, but in the return leg, Danny Rose’s much replayed goal ensured it was honours even overall. A bit of focus of late has been on Spurs awful record away from home against the artists formally known as the Big Four, a record that surely would have to end at some stage With both sides looking so good though, this is a must must must watch for everyone – two great attacking midfields, two slightly questionable defences. Hopefully goals galore.
Elsewhere, the other league frontrunners are obviously in action – Chelsea are away at Birmingham, and Man United at home to Wigan. St Andrews was a tricky place to visit last season, but its nowhere near so much this year. Chelsea have injury problems galore with Terry, Lampard, Essien and Alex all out, and Drogba still recovering from Malaria. They are also smarting after a big loss against Sunderland, so it’ll be interesting to see how they react.
Man United should beat Wigan on paper, but Man United have looked supremely shaky despite their results in recent weeks. United may have Wayne Rooney back, on the bench, and it’ll be interesting to see how the Man United crowd reacts to Rooney’s return should he take to the field.
Across town and Manchester City travel to Fulham in the first meeting of Mark Hughes and Manchester City since he was sensationally replaced by Roberto Mancini. Mancini of course has underperformed roughly as much as Hughes has at City, and both have suffered from the exact same problem – so desperate not to lose, they draw too often. Fulham are currently struggling a bit in the table, but Hughes would love to nick at least a draw from the visiting club.
Bolton take on Newcastle, which should be a good game. Bolton have been on fire of late, playing pretty decent football, and Newcastle have been fired by Andy Carroll. In fact the battle between him and Kevin Davies for an England shirt adds a whole different dimension to the game.
West Brom try and bounce back from a loss against Wigan by playing Stoke, who weirdly have scored nearly 87% of their goals in the second 45. So, hit them early, hit them hard.
Blackpool have started to see their good start ebb away in recent weeks, and will take on Wolves, who have a bit of a bad run despite some good performances. Could go either way, though there is a joke about weakened teams which is eluding me.
Liverpool take on West Ham to round out the Saturday games, and what a perfect team for Liverpool to face. With Gerrard out injured, but with Fernando Torres recently finding his form again, he could be in the goals here.
Robert Pires will return to the Premier League for injury savaged Aston Villa when they take on Blackburn, the former invincible presumably is a bit less pacey than he used to be. But he probably still knows what the french for Va Va Voom is.
Finally, Sunderland come off of a win against Chelsea, and play Everton. It’ll be interesting to see if it was freak result for the Black Cats, or whether they genuinely have turned a corner.