Friday, October 31, 2014

EPL 2014/15 - Week 10

With Man City's recent woes, Chelsea is about to widen the gap at the top and the excitement of the race to the top could be put to bed sooner than expected. Of course, there will be twists and bounds and it's too early to declare a winner but Chelsea are in a very strong position at the moment.

Newcastle v/s Liverpool. The Magpies comprehensively beat Man City in the Carling Cup in mid-week and they are in resurgence mode. This is bad news for Liverpool who are nowhere near optimal form. They are badly lacking Sturridge up-front and they look vulnerable here. This should end in a home win or draw and I favour the former. Home win.

Arsenal v/s Burnley. No ingeniosity into thinking that this will be a Gunners win. The main question is by how much. Walcott might return for this game and give the home side some much-needed impetus. Home win.

Chelsea v/s QPR. Another home win here. Can't see Chelsea giving away the 3 easy points on offer. Home win.

Everton v/s Swansea. Everton have started a good run but will be put to the test by a good Swansea side. The visitors nearly won at Anfield in mid-week and they are giving the habit of proving resilient opponents to whoever they play. This should be a tight game which might very well end in a draw, but I suspect that the home side will just edge this in the end. Home win.

Hull v/s Southampton. These 2 teams are enjoying a good spell at the moment. Southampton have found a gem of a striker in Pelle. Hull are a solid team and difficult to break down. This should be an even battle with a draw looks the likeliest result. Draw.

Leicester v/s WBA. The Foxes have to rack up the points at home in they are to avoid relegation as they are simply too weak on the road. WBA are an on-off team but on their best day can take all the points here. This can go any result with the draw the most probable outcome. Draw.

Stoke v/s West Ham. Another possible draw on the cards. Stoke have good form at home and the confidence of the Hammers should be high after dominating Man City in their last home win. A dra 0-0 that will satisfy both parties, should not be a surprise here. Draw.

Man City v/s Man Utd. The Manchester derby does not look as lopsided as it would have looked a couple of weeks back. City are reeling at the moment after back-to-back defeats against West Ham and Newcastle. The theory of second-season blues for Pellegrini could be very well founded. The absence of Silva for the Citizens makes their task more complicated as the little Spanish genius has been one of their brightest sparks of late. Rivals Man Utd managed to tie Chelsea in the dying seconds at Old Trafford last week-end and it will have brought back some much needed swagger to the team. The Red Devils needed that kind of impetus and this could kick-start a good run for them. However, going to beat City at the Etihaad could be out of their reach. For all their woes, Man City still have the deepest squad in the league and should again be formidable at home. I think the hosts will edge this. Home win.

Aston Villa v/s Tottenham. Villa are due a win very soon and this could come against a Spurs team that are still finding their feet under Pochettino. The hosts are relying much on striker Benteke but he's been struggling since returning from long-term injury. Spurs were shocked at home to Newcastle last week-end and I find it tough to see them as winners here. It looks more probable that Villa will prevail in front of their front crowd. Home win.

Crystal Palace v/s Sunderland. The last 2 Sunderland games have been rather extraordinary. First, there was their 0-8 bomb at Southampton, where they committed more errors than a first grader. They  kept their error rate high against Arsenal last week, with keeper Mannone blundering on the Gunners' second goal. Palace are strong at home and they look set to pounce on a team that is in much need of confidence. Home win.

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