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Arsenal hope to pile more misery onto Man United

Burnely vs Liverpool

Turf Moor, Burnely

Wednesday, 05-12-2018 @10: 45 pm

Referee: Scott Attwell

Liverpool have so far been impressive, grinding out wins which seem unimaginable at times. The 1-0 victory over Everton on Sunday was yet another victory that indicates that the Kops are on a run that normally would see a side top of the league. However, that is not the case as leaders Man City just can’t slow down at the moment. Liverpool start the day five points behind City and they will be confident they can take care of Burnely especially after the drama on Sunday.

Captain Jordan Henderson returns from suspension for what will be his 300th career league appearance. Sadio Mane may miss out after having stitches in a cut foot, while Andy Robertson is nursing a minor problem.

For the home side, James Tarkowski, who returned after hernia surgery as an unused substitute on Saturday, could make his first appearance for a month. Ben Gibson has overcome a similar injury but midfielder Steven Defour is a doubt because of a knee complaint.

Burnley’s only win in 11 league games against Liverpool since 1974 was by a 2-0 scoreline at home two seasons ago (D3, L7). All seven of Liverpool’s Premier League goals at Turf Moor have come in the second half of matches.  Victory on Wednesday would give Liverpool their best record after 15 matches of a top-flight season: 12 wins and three draws. Their current best is 12 wins, two draws and a defeat, set in 1978-79 and again in 1990-91. They have only conceded five goals in 14 league games this season – no team has conceded fewer than six after 15 matches of a top-flight season. The Reds are unbeaten in 16 Premier League matches played on a Wednesday since a 3-1 defeat at Stoke on Boxing Day 2012 (W11, D5). However, their only victory in the past seven away games against sides starting the day in the relegation zone came at Huddersfield in October (D2, L4). Jurgen Klopp’s side have scored the opening goal in 86% of their league matches this season.

Everton vs Newcastle United

Goodison Park, Liverpool

Wednesday, 05-12-2018 @10: 45pm 

Referee: Lee Mason

Everton have won eight of their past nine Premier League games against Newcastle, including each of the last five without conceding a goal. Newcastle’s solitary victory in their 14 most recent Premier League visits to Goodison Park came in September 2010 thanks to a Hatem Ben Arfa strike (D3, L10). There have been 18 penalties scored in Premier League matches between the two sides, the most of any fixture in the division.

Everton manager Marco Silva will assess the fitness of several players ahead of their second game in 76 hours. Silva said forward Ademola Lookman is in contention to make his first league start of the season, but Morgan Schneiderlin has a leg injury.

Newcastle winger Matt Ritchie must serve a one-match ban for accumulating five league bookings this season. Christian Atsu or Jacob Murphy will deputise, with manager Rafael Benitez considering other changes to the side. Paul Dummett and Isaac Hayden remain sidelined.

Everton have won four successive Premier League home games, keeping three clean sheets. They last enjoyed a longer winning run when setting a Premier League club record of eight successive victories at Goodison Park between January and April last year. They could win six of their opening eight home league matches of a season for the first time since 1987-88. Marco Silva’s Premier League home record – 18 wins, seven draws and seven defeats with Hull and Everton – is the exact reverse of his away record (W7, D7, L18). Everton are unbeaten in their last seven midweek league matches since losing at Sunderland in May 2016.

The 3-0 home defeat by West Ham on Saturday ended Newcastle’s four-match unbeaten run (W3, D1). Newcastle have 12 points after 14 matches. Their lowest tally after 15 fixtures of a Premier League season is 13 in both 1999-2000 and 2015-16.

Fulham vs Leicester City

Craven Cottage, London

Wednesday, 05-12-2018 @10: 45 pm 

Referee: David Coote

Fulham’s Andre Schurrle has overcome the minor injury that caused him to miss Sunday’s defeat by Chelsea. Floyd Ayite is out with a groin strain as new manager Claudio Ranieri prepares to face one of his previous clubs for the second successive fixture.

Leicester forward Jamie Vardy is nursing an ongoing groin problem and could miss Wednesday’s match. Harry Maguire is back in training but unlikely to play, while Rachid Ghezzal remains a doubt with a leg injury. Wes Morgan appeared to pick up an injury against Watford, with manager Claude Puel admitting several unnamed players are fitness concerns.

This will be the first league game between Fulham and Leicester since 2003-04, when Fulham won both Premier League meetings 2-0. Leicester City have failed to score in all four Premier League meetings. No side has ever failed to score in their first five matches against a single opponent in the competition. The Foxes haven’t won away at Fulham in any competition since a second-tier game in April 1983, drawing one and losing three of their subsequent four visits.

Wolverhampton Wanderers vs Chelsea

Molineux Stadium, West Midlands

Wednesday, 05-12-2018 @10: 45 pm

Referee: Jonathan Moss

Chelsea returned to winning ways with a 2-0 win over Fulham last Sunday. The victory was their first in three league games and will know they cannot afford any more slip-ups as they start the day 10 points behind leaders City who defeated Watford 2-1 on Tuesday night.

Mateo Kovacic and Marcos Alonso, who are nursing ankle and back problems respectively will be accessed going into Wednesday’s game. Blues boss Maurizio Sarri is set to make changes to keep his side fresh. Alvaro Morata, Ross Barkley and Ruben Loftus-Cheek are among the players hoping for recalls.

Wolves are without midfielder Ruben Neves, who serves a one-game ban after accumulating five yellow cards. That could mean Morgan Gibbs-White, 18, starts his first Premier League game, while alternative replacements include Romain Saiss and out-of-favour summer signing Leander Dendoncker.

Chelsea have won the last four meetings in league and cup by an aggregate score of 13-1, including a 2-0 victory at Molineux in the FA Cup fourth round last season. Wolves’ solitary victory against the Blues since 1983 came in a Premier League game at Molineux on 5 January 2011, courtesy of a Jose Bosingwa own goal.

The Blues could keep clean sheets in consecutive league games for the first time under Maurizio Sarri. They have won seven of their last nine games in league and cup. The Londoners have lost just one of their last 13 away league games against newly-promoted sides (W10, D2), with that defeat coming at Newcastle on the final day of last season. Chelsea have kept clean sheets in four of their six Premier League away games this season.

Tottenham Hotspurs vs Southampton

Wembley Stadium, London

Wednesday, 05-12-2015 @11: 00 pm

Referee: Anthony Taylor

Going into the game, Southampton have won just three of their 19 Premier League visits to Tottenham, most recently in May 2016 when Steven Davis scored both of Southampton’s goals. Southampton have kept only one clean sheet in their last 27 away league games against Spurs.

Tottenham defender Kieran Trippier returns after a groin injury but Jan Vertonghen is banned following his sending off against Arsenal. He could be replaced by Toby Alderweireld, who was rested on Sunday.

Kelvin Davis will take interim charge of Southampton following the dismissal of manager Mark Hughes on Monday. Michael Obafemi, 18, is a doubt after being forced off against Manchester United with a muscle problem, while Mario Lemina is suspended. Bertrand, Matt Targett and Danny Ings are still injury concerns and will all be assessed.

None of Tottenham’s last 18 Premier League games have ended in a draw (W13, L5) – the longest current run without one in the division. Spurs have kept just one clean sheet in their last six league games at Wembley. They have won all eight Premier League games this season against teams that began the midweek fixtures in the bottom half of the table.

Manchester United vs Arsenal

Old Trafford, Manchester

Wednesday, 05-12-2018 @ 11: 00pm

Referee: Andre Marriner

Manchester United have had a disastrous start to the 2018/19 Premier League season, winning only 6 of their first 14 games. The 2-2 draw away to Southampton on Sunday compounded their recent misery that has seen Jose Mourinho’s side go three games minus victory in the League. After City’s 2-1 win at Watford on Tuesday, United start the day 19 points behind the leaders and a loss at home to Arsenal will surely bring back the echoes of ‘Jose Out’ chants for the up-tenth time.

Against Arsenal, they come up against a side in high spirits especially after their North London 4-2 come-back victory last Sunday. The Gunners are currently on a 19 match unbeaten run (W15 D4) in all competitions. The appointment of Unai Emery looks to be paying off immediately and a win at Old Trafford on Wednesday could set the tone for Arsenal’s season and also confirm their top 4 aspirations.

The 82 most recent league and cup encounters had featured one or both of Sir Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger. This will be the first meeting in which neither of the long-serving managers is involved since 23 August 1986, when the Gunners won 1-0 in a league game at Highbury. Manchester United are unbeaten in 11 home league matches against Arsenal since September 2006 (W8, D3). However, the Gunners did win at Old Trafford in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup in March 2015.

Manchester United go into the game short of defensive options, and will hope Chris Smalling and Eric Bailly recover from respective foot and back problems. Ashley Young serves a one-game suspension, Phil Jones is reportedly nursing an injury, and both Luke Shaw and Romelu Lukaku were forced off with knocks on Saturday.

For Arsenal, midfielder Granit Xhaka is suspended after accumulating five yellow cards. Playmaker Mesut Ozil is unlikely to feature because of back spasms.

United have conceded 23 goals in their opening 14 Premier League games – only the bottom five (prior to the latest round of matches) have a worse record. Last season it took the Red Devils until 10 March – and 30 matches – until they conceded 23 league goals. They have conceded six goals in the opening 15 minutes of matches this season, a joint-league high with Fulham. Jose Mourinho’s side are winless in three league games for the first time in 12 months. Their only home league defeat this term was the 3-0 loss to Tottenham on 27 August. 

A win would give the Gunners 16 away points – as many as they claimed in total on the road last season (W4, D4, L11). They have already equalled last term’s total of four away victories in the top flight. Sunday’s triumph against Tottenham was only Arsenal’s fourth win in their last 29 league games against other sides from the established top six (D10, L15). The Gunners are unbeaten in their last 12 league games (W9, D3), and 19 matches in all competitions (W15, D4). They are one of four teams to have kept just two Premier League clean sheets this season (along with Manchester United) – only Fulham, with none, have worse record. They have scored 24 second-half goals in the Premier League this season, more than any other side. Arsenal have lost their last three midweek league games, conceding three goals in each defeat.

Tuesday’s results in the Premier League: 

-AFC Bournemouth 2-1 Huddersfield Town

-Brighton and Hove Albion 3-1 Crystal Palace

-West Ham United 3-1 Cardiff City

-Watford 1-2 Manchester City

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