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BPL: Southampton to draw or beat Liverpool

BPL: Southampton to draw or beat Liverpool
February 20
19:18 2015

On Sunday, Liverpool and their trio of former Saints – Adam Lallana, Dejan Lovren and Rickie Lambert – return to St Mary’s Stadium to face Southampton in the Barclays Premier League (BPL).

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On Friday, TheCable and their trio of soccer analysts – Aisha Falode, Kayode Tijani and Sunday Omeike – return to the studio after the FA Cup to give their views and predictions of this match and the other nine fixtures.

Welcome to BPL preview!

ASTON VILLA V STOKE

Aston Villa have lost their last five matches in the Barclays Premier League and they have also failed to score in seven of their last eight league games. Sunday, good luck Tim Sherwood?

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Sunday: Welcome Tim Sherwood! The former Spurs manager had an influence in his first day on the job and the joy of changing a manager will still have an effect on the players. Stoke City’s away form have dwindled a bit and I don’t see them getting something here, especially if you get walloped by ‎a Championship team in the FA Cup. I see Sherwood enjoying a sweet home debut. 2-1

Aisha: Aston Villa started the season very well but now face a relegation battle. The sacking of manager Paul Lambert showed how desperate things have become for them. Stoke City on the other hand played poorly in their last couple of games. I feel this will be a draw. 1-1

Kayode: Sherwood will take charge of his first match as Villa coach on Saturday, and it’s crucial that he starts on a positive note. The game though, smells like a draw. 1-1

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CHELSEA V BURNLEY

Chelsea and Burnley have previously met on 82 occasions in all competitions with Burnley winning 36, Chelsea winning 29 and the remaining ending in a draw. Aisha, I’m sure you are surprised that Burnley have a head-to-head result against Chelsea. But will the former Championship side improve on the stat?

Aisha: Champions find ways to win in tough circumstances and that’s exactly what Chelsea did in their last two games against Aston Villa and Everton. The Blues are the favourites of many to emerge champions at the end of the season and frankly, I don’t see Burnley posing much of a threat particularly with the return of Diego Costa. A comfortable home win for Chelsea. 3-0

Kayode: League leaders Chelsea host relegation threatened Burnley on Saturday and there is only one winner here. While the Blues have garnered 13 points out of the possible 15 over the last BPL games, Burnley have managed to scrap a paltry 4 points over the same number of games. After this game, it will be 4 points in six games for Burnley! 4-0

Sunday: Champions league is in the air and Jose Mourinho wants it badly, but the small matter of the BPL is there and graciously its Burnley after visiting PSG. Mourinho would want the game sewn up early enough to rest his team for a hectic schedule. Burnley’s form have dropped in recent weeks and it remains to be seen if goal scorer Danny Ing’s travel to Spain in search of pastures new will affect the team otherwise. A straightforward Blues win. 2-0

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CRYSTAL PALACE V ARSENAL

Crystal Palace have taken 10 points in Alan Pardew’s five games as manager, which only five teams in the league have matched or beaten over the same period. Kayode, do you see them picking three points against the Gunners?

Kayode: I doubt it. It will be a tough battle for Arsenal, considering Palace will play with a lot of physicality and it is matches like these which cause Arsenal to struggle as we saw against Stoke earlier on in the campaign. But Arsene Wenger’s team will just nick it 0-1.

Sunday: These days when a team visits Palace they know what to expect: wingers running at you and strikers giving your defence a rough day. Arsenal are however on the rise and they have the mental strength to battle out for a win at one of the most dreaded stadia in UK where the fans would make it a fierce day also. Wenger and Sanchez to lead Gunners to a scrappy win. 1-2

Aisha: The arrival of Alan Pardew has completely turned the fortunes of Crystal Palace around and eased their fears of relegation. But Arsenal are in decent form right now and may prove too strong. The Gunners should win this 1-2

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HULL CITY V QPR

QPR ended a run of seven BPL games without a win with victory over Sunderland last time out (D2 L5). Aisha, can they beat Hull away from home?

Aisha: QPR celebrated their first away win of the season in the 2-0 triumph over Sunderland last time out but I think repeating that feat over Hull will be beyond them. I’ll go for a draw. 1-1

Sunday: Steve Bruce’s side are regaining some confidence and form – a welcome development. It remains to be seen if QPR’s new coach Ramsey got it right for their first away win of the season or it was flash in the pan stuff. However, I expect Hull to push for a much-needed win to pull away from relegation troubles. 2-1

Kayode: This fixture is noted for few goals and three of the last four league meetings have ended as draws. I see another draw here 0-0

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SUNDERLAND V WEST BROM

West Brom have recorded more wins over Sunderland than they have against any other BPL side – eight. Sunday, can they make it nine?

Sunday: Unlikely. The Jermain Defoe effect at Sunderland has worn off. The Mackems have suffered back-to-back defeats and this game is a chance to get things back to ‘normal’. West Brom and Tony Pulis visiting is not a good time to regain some form as the Midlands club are also on form. Berahino is starting to look the player we knew earlier in the season and our own Brown Ideye hit 4 goals in ‎6 days. A score draw is definitely up for grabs. 2-2

Aisha: West Brom are in decent form right now. Although the Baggies are just two points better than Sunderland on the table, I think they can win this. 1-2

Kayode: Sunderland will be desperate to bounce back from their FA Cup embarrassment but West Brom are starting to gel under Pulis. Ideye to score the winner for the Baggies. 1-2

Let us go on a brief commercial break.

sou v liv last season

Liverpool brushed Southampton aside to move up to second place in the league last season after a 3-0 win.

 

Welcome back!

SWANSEA V MANCHESTER UNITED

Swansea have only scored nine goals in their last 11 BPL matches while United have scored 10 in their last six only failing to score in a game once in that run. Kayode, do you see Swansea’s lack of goals continue against United?

Kayode: Swansea have struggled lately despite occupying a top half position in ninth place. They have only managed one win in 2015 – the 1-0 win away at Southampton. They beat United in the league opener but they won’t win this. 1-2

Sunday: You know what to expect from Swansea – choreographed passing – and we also know Man United play shambolic football currently. However, the former champions are back winning and I think they can scrape through a win in Wales if their attackers come to the party while De Gea keeps bailing them out in defence. 1-2

Aisha: United are not playing very well right now but they are getting results. Swansea know that they are most likely to escape relegation so won’t be desperate just yet. United to win this 1-2

MANCHESTER CITY V NEWCASTLE

Newcastle are winless in their last 16 league matches against Manchester City.  Each of the last two league meetings at the Etihad has ended 4-0 to City. Sunday, another easy win for City?

Sunday: Sergio Aguero is back on form and Yaya Toure is back from winning the AFCON tourney. Coupled with a possible debut for the monstrous Wilfried Bony, this would prove too much of a game for my Toon Army. However, John Carver would not back down to a defensive approach and that would be his undoing in this game. I still expect a goal from Newcastle though, no matter how many City would conjure up. 3-1

Aisha: The champions showed that they won’t relinquish their title without a fight by brilliantly despatching Stoke City 4-1 at the Britannia stadium. With the return of Yaya Toure, the Citizens will no doubt become stronger. Newcastle are a good side but City can’t afford any more slips. This is a 3-1 home win for me

Kayode: I don’t see Newcastle even picking a draw here. Though City are inconsistent sometime but they will win this and put pressure on leaders Chelsea. 3-0

TOTTENHAM V WEST HAM

Prior to West Ham’s win at White Hart Lane last season, Tottenham had won seven and lost none of the previous 11 home games against the Hammers. Aisha, can the visitors build on last season’s result with another win?

Aisha: Spurs were utterly disappointed to lose to Liverpool 3-2 after twice levelling scores. West Ham have done very well this season but Tottenham usually get things right at White Hart Lane. I’ll go for a 3-1 victory for Spurs

Sunday: Fresh from Europa league action, Spurs might be a bit low on fitness but manager Pochettino knows best. Spurs have been in good form while West Ham are epileptic, getting trounced 4-0 at West Brom. Expect another loss for them in this London derby, courtesy of Harry Kane and co. 2-1

Kayode: Harry Kane is expected to return to Tottenham’s starting line-up for Sunday’s visit of West Ham in the BPL after he was rested for Thursday night’s 1-1 draw with Fiorentina in the Europa League. He will lead them to victory against the Hammers. 2-0

EVERTON V LEICESTER

Everton have not been particularly prolific in front of goal recently, scoring only five goals in their last seven matches, but Leicester have the third worst defensive record. Sunday, can Everton improve that record against the Foxes?

Sunday: Roberto Martinez’s Everton are beginning to find some form while Nigel Pearson’s Leicester continue to wallow in relegation waters. It’s a home fixture and bubbling from their 4-1 dismantling of Young Boys FC in Switzerland, the Toffees should give the home supporters something to laugh about. Lukakau to lead the goals. 3-1

Aisha: Everton were a bit unlucky to lose 1-0 to Chelsea so late in the game but they will be confident of victory facing bottom side Leicester at Goodison Park. 2-1

Kayode: Nigel Pearson’s team have lost their last four league games and conceded five goals in their two away defeats in that period – at 2-1 at Arsenal and 3-1 at Manchester United. It will be 1-0 at Everton!

SOUTHAMPTON V LIVERPOOL

Recent games between the Saints and the Reds have seen lot of goals, so Sunday’s match looks a good bet to produce at least three. Aisha, what do you think?

Aisha: This is an exciting tie. A resurgent Liverpool against a side that has confounded analysts with how well they have performed despite selling many top players, mostly to Liverpool incidentally. Liverpool won the reverse fixture on the first day of the season but I think this will be a draw. 2-2

Sunday: Match of the week and I do not see any of these two owning it. Koeman has his usual suspects fit and raring to go, but Liverpool have turned the corner since Sturridge’s return. They also now have Balotelli scoring again – a welcome development. The only problem for Liverpool is their erratic defence, with Skrtel and Sahko prone to errors the Southampton players can prey upon. Honours even. 1-1

Kayode: Liverpool’s £50million summer raid on Southampton was designed to strengthen their squad ahead of another title push. And the Saints were expected to struggle having been robbed of their star players. But six months down the line the Saints are in the top four with the Reds in seventh position. Southampton will remain in the top four after winning this tie 2-0

WEEK 24 PREDICTIONS

MATCH KAYODE AISHA SUNDAY RESULT
Tottenham v Arsenal 0-0 2-2 1-2 2-1
Swansea v Sunderland 3-0 2-1 2-1 1-1
QPR v Southampton 1-0 1-1 1-1 0-1
Man City v Hull City 4-0 3-0 3-0 1-1
Leicester City v Crystal Palace 1-0 1-1 2-2 0-1
Aston Villa v Chelsea 0-4 0-2 0-2 1-2
Everton v Liverpool 1-1 2-2 1-1 0-0
Burnley v West Brom 1-0 1-1 1-1 2-2
Newcastle v Stoke City 1-0 0-0 3-1 1-1
West Ham v Man United 1-2 2-2 1-2 1-1

PUNDITS LEAGUE TABLE

PUNDIT WK 24 CORRECT RESULT (1PT) WK 24 SCORE (2PTS) WK 24 TOTAL POINTS CUMULATIVE POINTS
Sunday Omeike 3 0 3 149
Aisha Falode 5 0 5 142
Kayode Tijani 2 0 2 125

 

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