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Football

Convolted task for City as Spurs welcome the defending champions to Wembley

Brighton vs Wolves

The American Express Community Stadium, East Sussex

Saturday, 27-10-2018 @05:00pm

Referee: Anthony Taylor

Brighton go into Saturday’s game with Wolves having won all their six previous top-flight meetings. The Seagulls have lost one of the last eight encounters in all competitions, winning three and drawing four. Wolves have only scored one goal in their last four games against Brighton.

Brighton’s top scorer Glenn Murray suffered concussion against Newcastle last weekend and will be assessed. Davy Propper and Pascal Gross remain out with ankle injuries but Bruno has recovered from a back spasm.

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo has named an unchanged side for the opening nine league matches but hinted the defeat by Watford could be the catalyst for changes. Adama Traore and Ivan Cavaleiro are among those pushing for a first start.

Brighton could win three consecutive top-flight matches for the first time since a run of four in May 1981. They are also vying to equal the club top-flight record of three consecutive clean sheets.

Fulham vs AFC Bournemouth 

Craven Cottage, London

Saturday, 27-10-2018 @05:00pm

Referee: Andre Marriner

Fulham captain Tom Cairney is in contention to return, having only played 26 minutes as a substitute since August because of an ankle injury. Left-back Joe Bryan is definitely out with a hamstring injury, but fellow defender Timothy Fosu-Mensah is hoping to be fit after a shoulder problem.

Bournemouth full-back Charlie Daniels is nearing a return from a knee injury but will not be involved this weekend. Forward Joshua King could make his 200th English league appearance.

This is the first top-flight meeting. Fulham have won just two of the last 16 encounters in all competitions, drawing five and losing nine.

Liverpool vs Cardiff City

Anfield, Liverpool

Saturday, 20-10-2018 @05:00pm

Referee: Scott Atwell

To maintain pace with the champions-City, Liverpool cannot afford any margin for error in such fixtures.  They have won the last four meetings in all competitions, most recently winning both clashes in the 2013-14 Premier League season. That run followed a five-match winning sequence for the Bluebirds from 1957 to 1959. Cardiff have won 11 of their 22 top-flight matches against the Reds, drawing two and losing nine.

Liverpool must face Cardiff City without injured midfielders Jordan Henderson and Naby Keita. Henderson was substituted during last week’s win at Huddersfield because of a hamstring problem, while Keita remains out for the same reason.

Cardiff pair Harry Arter and Josh Murphy are nursing injuries and will be assessed. Gary Madine could return to the squad following a virus but Joe Ralls must complete a two-match suspension.

Liverpool could set an outright top-flight club record of 10 consecutive home clean sheets on Saturday. Liverpool’s win against Huddersfield last weekend was their first in seven matches against teams in the relegation zone (D2, L4). The Reds have lost just one of their last 45 home Premier League matches against newly-promoted teams (W35, D9) – against Blackpool in 2010-11.

Southampton vs Newcastle United

St. Marys’ Stadium, Hampshire

Saturday, 27-10-2018 @05:00pm

Referee: Chris Kavanagh

Southampton are likely to be at full strength as they seek a first Premier League home win of the season. Mario Lemina was substituted against Bournemouth last weekend with a knee injury but the midfielder is expected to be fit.

Newcastle are bolstered by the return of forward Salomon Rondon and defender Ciaran Clark, who have both overcome thigh problems. Florian Lejeune remains a long-term absentee with a knee injury.

Southampton’s only defeat in their previous 24 home league matches against Newcastle came in September 2004 (W16, D7). Southampton have won 15 Premier League games versus Newcastle, more than against any other opponent. Newcastle beat Saints 3-0 in March but haven’t won consecutive league meetings since the 2004-2005 season.

Watford vs Huddersfield Town

Vicarage Road, London

Saturday, 27-10-2015 @05:00pm

Referee: Mike Dean

Watford striker Troy Deeney is a major doubt for the visit of Huddersfield Town because of a hamstring injury. Midfielder Nathaniel Chalobah will also be assessed due to a knee problem, but defenders Jose Holebas and Christian Kabasele return from suspension.

Huddersfield Town welcome back winger Ramadan Sobhi after two months out with a knee injury. Rajiv van La Parra is a doubt due to illness, while Tommy Smith, Danny Williams and Terence Kongolo are out.

Watford were one of only two teams beaten home and away by Huddersfield last season, including 4-1 at Vicarage Road. The winning side has scored four goals in each of the last four league meetings at Vicarage Road. Huddersfield have won four of their last five league matches against Watford, losing one.

Leicester City vs West Ham United

King Power Stadium, Leicestershire

Saturday, 27-10-2018 @07:30pm

Referee: Michael Oliver

Leicester have lost just one of their last seven Premier League games against West Ham (W4, D2). West Ham are attempting to win consecutive league games at Leicester for the first time since 1997, having ended a six-match winless run at the King Power last season.

Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy is a fitness doubt to face West Ham because of a stomach complaint. Wes Morgan serves the final game of a two-match ban but Demarai Gray is back in contention after a month out.

West Ham winger Andriy Yarmolenko could miss the rest of the season after being sidelined for up to six months following Achilles surgery. Andy Carroll, Manuel Lanzini, Pedro Obiang and Jack Wilshere all remain unavailable for the Hammers.

Leicester could lose consecutive Premier League home games for the first time in more than a year. They are also in danger of registering three successive league defeats for the first time since Claudio Ranieri lost five in a row and was sacked. However, they could equal the club record of five wins in the opening 10 games of a Premier League campaign.

Burnley vs Chelsea

Turf Moor, Burnely

Sunday, 28-10-2018 @04:30pm

Referee: Craig Pawson

Robbie Brady is in contention to play his first game for Burnley since last December but midfielder Aaron Lennon is battling a virus and defender Ben Gibson will be given more time to return to full match fitness.

Chelsea will give Hazard every chance to prove his fitness after he missed Thursday’s 3-1 Europa League win over BATE Borisov at Stamford Bridge with a back problem. Manager Maurizio Sarri remains hopeful the Belgium forward could be back in time for the Turf Moor trip but Ethan Ampadu is likely to remain sidelined through knee trouble.

Burnley are yet to beat Chelsea at Turf Moor in a Premier League match (P4 W0 D1 L3) – their last home league win over the Blues was in April 1983 in the second tier. Chelsea have lost just one of their eight Premier League games against Burnley (W5 D2), a 3-2 home defeat on the opening day of last season. Burnley have won just two points from their last 12 home Premier League games against the ‘big six’, drawing two and losing 10 since a 2-0 win over Liverpool in August 2016. Chelsea are unbeaten after the first nine games of a top-flight season for just the fifth time in their history alongside 1964-65 (3rd), 1966-67 (9th), 2005-06 (1st) and 2014-15 (1st). Burnley have won seven points from their last four games (W2 D1 L1), one more than they picked up in their previous 11 Premier League matches combined. Maurizio Sarri could become the first Chelsea manager to remain unbeaten in his first 10 Premier League matches in charge of the club (P9 W6 D3 L0).

Crystal Palace vs Arsenal

Selhurst Park, London

Sunday, 28-10-2018 @04:30pm

Referee: Martin Atkinson

Midfielder Max Meyer and forward Alexander Sørloth are both available for selection after missing last week’s defeat against Everton but Christian Benteke and Joel Ward will not return in time for Sunday’s clash at Selhurst Park.

Arsenal will be hoping to have either Nacho Monreal or Sead Kolasinac back in the squad for their Premier League trip to Crystal Palace. Both left-backs missed the Europa League win at Sporting Lisbon with hamstring problems as Granit Xhaka filled the gap in defence. Petr Cech will be pushing for a recall in goal having overcome his own hamstring complaint, with Ainsley Maitland-Niles (leg) and Laurent Koscielny (Achilles) also back in training but unlikely to be up to speed.

Crystal Palace have lost nine of their last 11 Premier League matches against Arsenal (W1 D1), losing both games in 2017-18. Arsenal have only lost one of their nine away Premier League visits to Crystal Palace (W6 D2), a 0-3 reverse in April 2017. Crystal Palace have netted just three goals in their last eight Premier League games, failing to score on five occasions in this run. Only in 2017-18 (2) have the Eagles scored fewer goals after the first nine games to a top-flight season than in 2018-19 (5). Arsenal have won more points (437) and averaged more points per game (1.81) in Premier League London derbies than any other team. Arsenal lost their first five away matches on Sundays in all competitions in 2018 – they have since won each of their last three.

Manchester United vs Everton

Old Trafford, Manchester

Sunday, 28-10-2018 @07:00pm

Referee: Jonathan Moss

Mourinho has confirmed that Jesse Lingard (groin) and Scott McTominay (knee) could feature but Diogo Dalot, Marouane Fellaini and Alexis Sanchez remain absent.

Everton have no fresh injury concerns and Silva may opt to field an unchanged starting XI following three straight Premier League wins. Yerry Mina will again be available but may have to settle for a place on the substitutes’ bench, while James McCarthy is pushing to be involved for the first time since his double leg break in January.

Manchester United have won 19 home Premier League games against Everton – only against Spurs have they won more (21). Everton are winless in seven matches against Manchester United in all competitions (W0 D2 L5) since a 3-0 home win in the Premier League in April 2015. Manchester United have scored more goals (98) and won more games (35) against Everton in the Premier League than against any other opponent. Five of Manchester United’s last seven Premier League goals against Everton have been scored in the last 10 minutes of matches. Manchester United currently have a goal difference of -1 in the Premier League this season; the first time that they have had a negative goal difference after nine games of a league campaign since 1990-91. Only in 2014-15 under Louis van Gaal (13 points) have Manchester United won fewer points from their opening nine games in a Premier League season than in 2018-19 (14). In fact, this is the second time Jose Mourinho has won just 14 points from a possible 27 in his opening nine matches of a season as Man Utd boss (also did so in 2016-17).

Tottenham Hotspurs vs Manchester City

Wembley Stadium, London

Monday, 29-10-2018 @10:00pm

Referee: Kevin Friend

While Alli is back in contention after four games out, Danny Rose (groin) and Jan Vertonghen (hamstring) continue to receive treatment and will miss the Wembley clash.

Fabian Delph (knee) and Ilkay Gundogan (hamstring) are doubtful for City, while Danilo is likely to be absent with an ankle knock sustained on international duty. Goalkeeper Claudio Bravo is a long-term absentee (Achilles).

Spurs have lost 10 of their last 15 Premier League games against Man City (W4 D1), having lost just three of their first 27 games against them in the competition. Just two of the last 28 league meetings between Spurs and Man City have ended as draws (11 wins for Man City, 15 wins for Spurs). Tottenham have won seven and lost none of their last nine Premier League games played on Monday (D2), with their last defeat coming against Norwich in April 2012 (1-2). Man City are unbeaten in six Premier League away games in London (W5 D1), winning the last four in a row. The Citizens could become the first non-London side to win five consecutive Premier League games in the capital. Tottenham’s Erik Lamela has been directly involved in four goals in five Premier League games this season (three goals, one assist), the same total he registered in 25 games last term (two goals, two assists). Man City’s Sergio Aguero scored 10 goals in his first seven Premier League games against Spurs – since then, he’s failed to find the net in five appearances against them.

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