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Football

No more room for error as Man City host Arsenal in Premier League

Tottenham Hotspurs vs Newcastle United
Wembley Stadium, London
Saturday, 02-02-2019 @3:30pm
Referee: Andre Marriner

Tottenham beat Newcastle 2-1 at Wembley last season, ending a run of three consecutive Premier League home defeats against the Magpies. Spurs are chasing a fourth consecutive league win against Newcastle – they last did that between 2004 and 2005. None of Tottenham’s last 20 Premier League home games in this fixture have ended as a draw (W12, L8).

Tottenham are again without injured trio Dele Alli, Harry Kane and Ben Davies. Son Heung-min suffered from cramp in midweek and will be assessed, while Vincent Janssen is in contention after being added to Spurs’ Premier League squad list for the rest of the season.

Newcastle could name the same side which defeated Manchester City. New signing Miguel Almiron, who has joined from Atlanta United, is not yet available as he awaits a visa. Another new arrival, Antonio Barreca, is in contention, while Joselu could feature after missing out in midweek because of an ankle injury.

Brighton vs Waftord
The American Express Community Stadium, East Sussex
Saturday, 02-02-2019 @6pm
Referee: Simon Hooper

Brighton left-back Bernardo could return after five games out with a hamstring injury. Winger Alireza Jahanbakhsh is available again after returning from Asian Cup duty with Iran.

Watford midfielder Abdoulaye Doucoure is likely to miss a fourth successive match because of a knee injury. Kiko Femenia (hamstring) and Sebastian Prodl (knee) are still out, while Tom Cleverley may be rested as he continues to build his match fitness.

Brighton’s only win in the past eight league meetings came in the corresponding fixture last season (D3, L4). That is the Seagulls’ only home victory in the six most recent attempts against Watford. Watford are looking to do the league double over Brighton for the first time since the 1973-74 season, when they were both in the third tier.

Burnely vs Southampton.

Turf Moor, Burnley
Saturday, 02-02-2019 @6pm
Referee: Martin Atkinson

Burnley will assess new signing Peter Crouch in training before deciding whether to give him his Clarets debut. Johann Berg Gudmundsson and Robbie Brady could return from respective thigh and groin injuries.

Southampton midfielder Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg should be fit despite suffering a cut to his head in the midweek draw against Crystal Palace. Forward Charlie Austin is nursing an ankle problem and is a doubt for Saturday’s game.

The two teams played out a 0-0 draw on the opening day of the season, and there have only been four goals in the past four meetings. All three of Burnley’s Premier League wins against Southampton have been by a score of 1-0. Southampton’s only victory in nine top-flight visits to Turf Moor came in March 1971, when Mick Channon scored the only goal (D2, L6).

Chelsea vs Huddersfield Town
Stamford Bridge, London
Saturday, 02-02-2019 @6pm
Referee: Paul Tierney

Chelsea will assess the fitness of forward Gonzalo Higuain, who has been struggling with a back injury. Head coach Maurizio Sarri has no other new fitness concerns but could make changes following the 4-0 defeat at Bournemouth.

Huddersfield’s Philip Billing is set to return after two games out with a knee problem, while new signing Karlan Grant could make his debut up front. Aaron Mooy returned as a substitute in the midweek defeat at Everton.

Chelsea have won two of the previous three Premier League meetings, including Maurizio Sarri’s first game as their head coach in August. However, Huddersfield earned a draw when the teams met at Stamford Bridge last May, a point which guaranteed their Premier League survival. Huddersfield’s last league victory over Chelsea was 2-1 at Stamford Bridge in the old Second Division in March 1963.
Chelsea are in danger of losing three league matches in a row for the first time since November 2015. They have failed to score in three of their last four league games. They could fail to score in three consecutive Premier League fixtures for the first time since 2007. The Blues have scored 13 goals in 13 league matches, having amassed 27 goals in their first 11 fixtures of the season. During that 13-match spell, only Huddersfield and Cardiff have scored fewer Premier League goals than Chelsea. Chelsea have kept 10 Premier League clean sheets in 2018-19 – only Liverpool have more.

Crystal Palace vs Fulham
Selhurst Park, London
Saturday, 02-02-2019 @6pm
Referee: Michael Oliver

Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha is suspended because of his sending off at Southampton on Wednesday night. New signing Michy Batshuayi is in contention to play but James Tomkins is a slight doubt and Cheikhou Kouyate has been ruled out with a twisted ankle.

Fulham are assessing the fitness of deadline-day recruits Havard Nordtveit and Lazar Markovic. Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa could return but Joe Bryan is a doubt and Alfie Mawson remains unavailable.

Fulham have lost only one of their last 11 league matches away to Palace, winning five. There have been 15 goals scored in the past four meetings.

Everton vs Wolves
Goodison Park, Liverpool
Saturday, 02-02-2019 @6pm
Referee: Lee Mason

Everton midfielder Idrissa Gueye remains a doubt because of the groin problem that caused him to miss Tuesday’s win at Huddersfield. Leighton Baines suffered a rib injury during that game and will be assessed, while Lucas Digne is suspended and Yerry Mina is unlikely to be fit.

Defender Willy Boly is available for Wolves after serving a three-match suspension. Head coach Nuno Espirito Santo has no fresh injury concerns.

Everton are unbeaten in the past seven meetings – all in the Premier League – although five were drawn. Wolves’ solitary victory in their last 14 league and cup games away to Everton came in the top flight in September 1979 (D5, L8).

Cardiff City vs AFC Bournemouth
Cardiff City Stadium, Cardiff
Saturday, 02-02-2019 @8:30pm
Referee: Jonathan Moss

Leandro Bacuna is expected to start for Cardiff after signing from reading on transfer deadline day. Harry Arter is ineligible to face his parent club, but Victor Camarasa and Josh Murphy could return after missing the midweek defeat by Arsenal.

Bournemouth’s Callum Wilson has had minor knee surgery and will be out for a further three weeks, while Jefferson Lerma’s ankle injury will be assessed. Dominic Solanke could make his debut after overcoming a hamstring problem. The striker was an unused substitute for the midweek win against Chelsea.

Bournemouth are undefeated in the past four meetings, winning three and drawing one with an aggregate scoreline of 11-4. Cardiff are without a win in the last five home encounters, drawing three and losing two. The Bluebirds have won only two of their last 16 league fixtures against Bournemouth, both in the third tier: at home in April 1994 and away in February 2002, when Eddie Howe played for the Cherries. Cardiff’s most recent competitive victory against Bournemouth came away in the League Cup first round in August 2008.

Leicester City vs Man United
King Power Stadium, Leicester
Sunday, 03-02-2019 @5:05pm
Referee: Mike Dean

Leicester have no injury concerns aside from Daniel Amartey, who is recovering from an ankle injury sustained in October.

Pogba and Martial should be available for United while Chris Smalling returned to the bench in midweek after a foot injury and is pushing for his first appearance in two months. However, fellow defender Marcos Rojo is out. Marouane Fellaini has a calf injury and is closing in on a move to China.

Leicester have won only one of their 12 home Premier League matches against Man Utd, coming from two goals down to win 5-3 in September 2014 (D4 L7). Manchester United have won 16 of their last 20 matches against Leicester City in all competitions (D3 L1). Leicester have won more points from losing positions than any other Premier League side this season (13). Manchester United are the only team to have received a yellow card in all 24 of their Premier League matches this season. Leicester have not lost three consecutive home Premier League games since December 2014. Manchester United are looking to win five consecutive away matches in all competitions for the first time since October 2012 under Sir Alex Ferguson. Since a 4-0 win over Swansea City in April 2016, Leicester have won just one of their 14 matches on Sunday in all competitions (D4 L9), a 2-0 win over Everton in Claude Puel’s first game in charge in October 2017. Man Utd’s Juan Mata has scored four goals and assisted two more in his last five Premier League appearances against Leicester, scoring in each of his last two games at the King Power (three goals). Since the start of the 2014-15 season, no player has scored more Premier League goals against Manchester United than Leicester striker Jamie Vardy (4, level with Gylfi Sigurdsson and Sergio Aguero). Paul Pogba has been involved in 53 per cent of the 19 goals scored by Manchester United in the Premier League under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (6 goals, 4 assists).

Man City vs Arsenal
Etihad Stadium, Manchester
Sunday, 03-02-2019 @7:30pm
Referee: Martin Atkinson

Defender Vincent Kompany remains absent for City but goalkeeper Ederson is expected to be fine after suffering a slight knee injury in the defeat to Newcastle. Benjamin Mendy is a doubt after missing City’s last two matches.

Arsenal captain Laurent Koscielny has returned to full training after scans confirmed he did not suffer a fractured jaw against Manchester United. Arsenal said scans revealed only “bruising and soft tissue swelling” to Koscielny’s face and jaw, giving Emery the option of picking him amid a defensive injury crisis. Danny Welbeck and Sokratis Papastathopoulos (both ankle), Hector Bellerin and Rob Holding (both knee) remain out. Henrikh Mkhitaryan could feature after overcoming a foot problem
Manchester City have won their last three Premier League games against.

Arsenal – they’ve haven’t won four consecutive top-flight games against the Gunners since April 1937. Arsenal have lost seven of their last 11 visits to the Etihad Stadium in all competitions against Man City (W2 D2), losing the last two. Manchester City have lost four of their last nine Premier League games (W5), as many as in their previous 72 combined (W56 D12). Arsenal have lost 11 of their last 19 away Premier League games (W5 D3), keeping just one clean sheet in that time, a 1-0 win at Huddersfield Town in May 2018. Since Roberto Firmino’s goal for Liverpool on January 3rd, Manchester City have scored 25 goals in a row without conceding at the Etihad in all competitions, winning their last four home games by an aggregate score of 24-0. Manchester City have lost three of their last seven Premier League games when scoring first – they had lost just three of their previous 96 matches when scoring the first goal. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored his 25th Premier League goal in Arsenal’s last match against Cardiff, reaching that number faster than any other Gunners player in the competition’s history (37 games). Since August 20th, Manchester City have only won three more points in the Premier League (50) than Arsenal (47) and have lost more games (4) than the Gunners (3) in that time. Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has never lost a match against Unai Emery in all competitions (W7 D4 L0) – the only manager he has faced more during his managerial career without losing is Joaquín Caparrós (13 games). Sergio Aguero has scored in seven of his last 11 matches against Arsenal in all competitions for Manchester City, though he hasn’t found the net in either of his last two. Since Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s Premier League debut (February 3rd 2018), Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette have combined for seven Arsenal goals in the competition – two more than any other duo for the club in that time.

West Ham United vs Liverpool
London Stadium, London
Monday, 04-02-2019 @11pm
Referee: Kevin Friend

Marko Arnautovic could be fit to face Liverpool despite fears he had suffered a broken foot in midweek. Lukasz Fabianski (arm) and Aaron Cresswell (hamstring) also hope to be available, but Samir Nasri is still missing with a minor calf problem. However, Jack Wilshere, Fabian Balbuena, Andriy Yarmolenko, Manuel Lanzini, Winston Reid and Carlos Sanchez are long-term absentees.

As for the visitors, Liverpool midfielder James Milner returns from suspension and is likely to be asked to fill in at right-back as Alexander-Arnold continues his recovery from a knee problem.

West Ham have lost their last four Premier League matches against Liverpool, conceding exactly four times in each defeat (0-4, 1-4, 1-4, 0-4). Liverpool have won both of their Premier League matches at the London Stadium against West Ham – they haven’t won three consecutive away league games against the Hammers since January 2007. Liverpool have scored four times in each of their last four Premier League games against West Ham; in top-flight history, only twice has a team scored four or more goals in five consecutive matches against an opponent – Sunderland vs Manchester United (five between 1893 and 1906) and Arsenal vs Middlesbrough (seven between 1930 and 1933). In their 0-3 defeat at Wolves, West Ham failed to register a shot on target in a Premier League match for the first time since December 2017 against Arsenal; it was also the first time a side managed by Manuel Pellegrini had failed to attempt an effort on target in a Premier League game. Liverpool have kept six clean sheets away from home in the Premier League this season, one more than they did in the whole of 2017-18. They last kept more on the road in the 2014-15 campaign (8). All seven of the Premier League goals conceded by West Ham in 2019 have been scored in the second half of matches. West Ham are looking to win three consecutive matches in all competitions at the London Stadium for the first time in what will be their 61st match at the stadium

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