I was accused of being negative after last weekend’s result….
Say this out loud with me …. Arsenal lost to one of the worst teams in the division, a team who hadn’t won since October and I (a Gooner) wasn’t happy about it!!!
That’s a shock isn’t it?
Ask a Man United, Liverpool or Chelsea fan if they would have been positive after that performance.
It made Man City’s defeat at the Lane a huge moment in the title race.
Any result for the Champions would have changed the narrative this week and put a huge spotlight on Arteta to get a response this Saturday.
While there’s obviously still pressure on us, playing to go 8 points clear is a lot different compared to playing to stay 2 points clear of 2nd.
West Ham 0-1 Chelsea
It will take time for Chelsea’s new players to all get to know each other while they individually settle into a new culture.
Potter can’t even play the same 11 every week for continuity because he simply has too many players to keep happy. You sense this job isn’t going how Mr Potter wanted, but maybe be feared it would go?
For a while Chelsea might have to rely on individual pieces of magic rather than great team performances.
Thankfully they have that talent.
Wouldn’t shock me though if they simply don’t fancy the battle.
Arsenal 1-1 Brentford
I know I know.
I just keep having flashbacks to 12 months ago when the majority of this squad couldn’t cope with the pressure of a top 4 race and were crippled by the fear of failure.
The Everton performance reminded me of Palace, Brighton and Southampton last campaign when we simply didn’t turn up.
If we can respond with a win and show that Goodison was a one-off it could be a crucial moment In the season.
Any nerves though, and Brentford are more than good enough to take advantage. They are the form team in the top flight
A wobble then, although I don’t think Man City will beat us at the Emirates.
Palace 1-0 Brighton
The Derby which isn’t a Derby!
Bottom line is this games matters to these two sides.
Palace may be due some luck in this fixture?
Fulham 1-0 N Forest
Two newly promoted clubs on course to avoid relegation.
Fulham start the weekend ahead of the likes of Liverpool and Chelsea!
A defeat leaves Forest still looking over their shoulders.
Leicester 1-3 Spurs
Would be very Spursy if they followed up beating the Champions by dropping points here.
Man City allowed Spurs to play how Conte loves to set up, everyone behind the ball and then be clinical on the counter attack.
The problem of course is not every team are going to attack Spurs, some will let them have the ball.
If Spurs get an early goal here they can sucker the Foxes in
Saints 1-1 Wolves
Nathan Jones is starting to say bizarre things, a sign that the job is too big for him.
Lose here and it wouldn’t shock me if Saints look for their third manager of the season.
Wolves are an example of what happens when you recruit the right manager.
The issue how many Saints fans and players truly believe they can get a win?
That’s a problem.
Cherries 0-1 Newcastle
Bournemouth was once my local club but are dropping like a stone.
Can see a repeat of last weekend where they play well but still lose.
The issue is the Toons defence is so good, the fewer chances the home side make, are they clinical enough to make them count?
Smash and grab for the Geordies!
Man City 3-1 Villa
As I said, if City had got a result at the Lane , the narrative would have been different.
Instead the talk has been ‘can the Champions put together a winning run’ to put pressure on us?
They just don’t look like their old selves.
In the short term Haaland can hurt Villa’s defence but long term I think Pep Guardiola is over complicating things.
It’s crazy to question a man who has dominated this League, but he needs to go back to basics and not overthink things.
Cancelo loaned out? KDB on the bench? Foden on the bench? Dias and Laporte not in defence?
Just to add to their over 100 charges of financial breaches …..if your innocent and truth is on your side ……why delay giving evidence ?
Leeds 0-1 Man United
As I write this, Leeds are trying to hire a manager in time for the weekend but they seem to be shortlisting managers who don’t know English Football.
That’s a gamble.
I submit this a few hours after a 2-2 draw at Old Trafford, a great result in the circumstances.
Unlikely to catch United cold again though twice in 5 days?
Liverpool 2-0 Everton
Due to being a Derby I think the Kop will act like the 12th man, knowing their team are not at their most confident.
I think their players will be motivated due to the opposition.
Sean Dyche showed in one match why he’s the perfect man to keep Everton up.
He won’t tolerate a lack of work rate and the longer on the training pitch, the more organised the Toffees will become.
Yet going to Anfield and taking the initiative is way too early for him. He will park the bus and play for a 0-0.
Be interested in Klopp’s post-match press conference if that’s the case.
At what point does his passive aggression to journalists cross that line?
It’s not okay to be polite only when everything goes your way.
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