Premier League Predictions – Gameweek 34
Liverpool and Man City’s heavyweight fight for the title continues this weekend with both sides facing potential banana skins in their bid to lift to this year’s Premier League trophy. Will results this weekend help shift the dial in either direction?
Elsewhere, two relegation places may already have been filled, but there are plenty of sides with work still to do this weekend to avoid joining Huddersfield and Fulham in next season’s Championship.
Here are our Premier League predictions for Gameweek 34…
PREMIER LEAGUE PREDICTIONS
Leicester City vs Newcastle, 20:00
Case for the home side: Brendan Rodgers is quietly building some nice momentum which bodes well ahead of the 2019/20 season, particularly with so much young talent to work with. They should have enough to unlock a Magpies that currently looks off the pace.
Case for the away side: Recent defeats may have seen nerves creeping back in amongst the Toon Army faithful, but the equation stays the same – a win here by any means should all but secure safety. Out of all the teams towards the bottom of the table, Rafa’s side looks one of the best equipped to scrap out a 1-0 away win against better opposition.
Verdict: Rodgers’ strong start to life at the King Power to continue. 2-0
Saturday’s games – 15:00 kick-off unless specified
Spurs vs Huddersfield, 12:30
Case for the home side: The happy homecoming has done Spurs the world of good after arguably their patchiest spell in recent times under Mauricio Pochettino. They’ve also shown from previous setbacks they can cope effectively without main man Harry Kane.
Case for the away side: It’s been two from two for Spurs at their new ground so far. With one eye on the Champions League, it would be typical Spurs to take their eye off the ball and hand Huddersfield a shock win at their state-of-the-art new ground. Could this be the weekend’s acca buster?
Verdict: No Kane but no problem for Spurs with another win at their new home. 3-0
Brighton vs Bournemouth
Case for the home side: The Seagulls didn’t get the pasting many pundits were expecting at Wembley as they were edged out 1-0 by Man City. Can they use that as a building block to move on quickly from their toothless defeat to Southampton last time around at the Amex?
Case for the away side: Eddie Howe’s side is on an alarming slump of form but have had the measure of the Seagulls in recent encounters – in fact, it’s been 10 years since the Seagulls’ last league victory in this fixture either home or away. Could the ‘bogey team’ theory hold once again?
Verdict: A nervy afternoon for the home side, but the Seagulls to snatch the points. 2-1
Burnley vs Cardiff City
Case for the home side: Victory over Bournemouth was a huge psychological boost for Sean Dyche’s side who will scent blood at Turf Moor safe in the knowledge a win here would leave their opponents with far too much work to do to overhaul them. Expect them not to squander the opportunity.
Case for the away side: Neil Warnock knows his Bluebirds side has been written off all season, and will drum into his side the positives from his side’s narrow defeats to Chelsea and Man City. Every time this season Cardiff have looked doomed, they have shown a tendency to pull a surprise result out of the bag to keep those above them looking over their shoulders.
Verdict: The Clarets to move clear from relegation danger. 2-1
Fulham vs Everton
Case for the home side: Every game is effectively a free hit for Scott Parker as his long audition to take the Cottagers’ job on a permanent basis continues. He will be hoping that Everton’s tendency to rest on their laurels after a run of reasonable form continues this weekend.
Case for the away side: After an underwhelming start to his Toffees career, is Marco Silva finally showing signs he is the man who can help Everton close the gap on the ‘Big Six’? Everton have looked far more organised in recent weeks and should make light work of Fulham if they open the scoring.
Verdict: Marco Silva’s upwardly mobile Toffees to continue their winning streak. 0-2
Southampton vs Wolves
Case for the home side: The Saints are so close to securing their Premier League status, and one final heave could help drag them over the line. Wolves too often flatter to deceive against Premier League strugglers and that trend could continue here.
Case for the away side: Don’t expect Nuno to take his side’s surprise collapse in the FA Cup semi-final lying down. A 7th place finish would go some way to softening that blow, starting with a win and an improved performance here.
Verdict: Nuno’s side to bounce back from cup defeat. 1-2
Man Utd vs West Ham, 17:30
Case for the home side: This is one of the more one-sided fixtures in Premier League history, with 2007 the last time the Hammers left Old Trafford with anything better than a point. Reds boss Ole Gunnar Solksjaer will also want an improved performance after a few falterings since taking the reins permanently.
Case for the away side: Arguably this season’s most eccentric side in the Premier League, if the Hammers are in the mood they are more than capable of lifting their game, particularly with nothing to lose here.
Verdict: Ole’s side to get the win at Old Trafford. 2-1
Crystal Palace vs Man City, 14:05
Case for the home side: Roy Hodgson’s side is on the brink of safety after snatching all three points against Newcastle last time out. After beating City on their own turf earlier this season, they also have the incentive of snatching a rare double against a reigning Premier League champion.
Case for the away side: At this stage of the season, the experience of having won a Premier League title can be a huge advantage when it comes to holding their nerve in games and locking up three points in games that, on the face of it, look tricky. Palace’s stuttering home form should also play into City’s hands.
Verdict: City to make a statement of intent at Selhurst Park. 1-3
Liverpool vs Chelsea, 16:00
Case for the home side: Jürgen Klopp’s side seems to be passing every test thrown at them this season and to all intents and purposes, this looks to be their hardest game left this season. A comfortable Champions League win over FC Porto also means they can effectively concentrate all their focus on the prize they really want this season.
Case for the away side: After such a long wait, it’s only natural nerves will be creeping in at Anfield with every week that goes by with Liverpool left in the title race. If Chelsea can keep the home crowd quiet, they have the talent to pounce on any tension – particularly if Eden Hazard continues to run the show.
Verdict: Liverpool to pass the biggest stumbling block to Premier League glory left in their way this season. 1-0
Watford vs Arsenal, 20:00
Case for the home side: The Hornets are still coming down from cloud nine after a famous victory in the FA Cup. Expect the atmosphere to be rocking at Vicarage Road on Monday night as an Arsenal side that still too often show signs of travel sickness comes to town.
Case for the away side: Arsenal made life look surprisingly easy in the Europa League as they surprised even their own fans by professionally seeing out a 2-0 first-leg victory over Napoli. That confidence could carry them through here, although Unai Emery will be tempted to shuffle the pack with some first-season silverware now tantalisingly within reach.
Verdict: A point apiece at Vicarage Road with Arsenal’s eyes on Europe. 1-1
All image sources from PA Images
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