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Football

Man City at home to Spurs headlines Premier League Match-Day 2

Arsenal vs Burnley
Emirates Stadium, London
Saturday, 17-08-2019 @2:30pm
Referee: Mike Dean

Arsenal got their campaign off to a narrow 1-0 defeat away to Newcastle United, a result that must have impressed everyone associated with the clubs after registering a clean-sheet at the end of the day.

Unai Emery also handed debuts to three of his summer acquisitions and the home game against Burnley who also won on opening weekend presents the Spaniard with a chance to probably start record signing Nicholas Pepe, who came off the bench at St. James.

Arsenal’s Mesut Ozil and Sead Kolasinac trained this week and are in contention to play after srcurity concerns. Granit Xhaka has a bruised back and leg and will be assessed, while Kieran Tierney, Hector Bellerin, Rob Holding and Dinos Mavropanos remain out.

Danny Drinkwater will not be involved for Burnley but Charlie Taylor is now fit and has travelled with the squad. Steven Defour and Robbie Brady have returned to light training following respective calf and rib injuries.

Burnley have lost nine successive league meetings – the longest losing streak in their top-flight history against a particular opponent. Their only victory in the past 19 away games against Arsenal in all competitions came in September 1974. Arsenal have won all seven encounters at the Emirates Stadium by an aggregate score of 21-4.

Arsenal are looking to begin a league campaign with two straight wins for the first time since 2009-10. The Gunners have lost their opening home league match of the season in five of the past eight seasons. Only Manchester City and Liverpool claimed more home points than the 45 accrued by Arsenal last term. They have lost only one of their past 25 league games when scoring first, winning 20 of them. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has scored scored eight goals in his last six games in all competitions.

Aston Villa vs AFC Bournemouth
Villa Park, Birmingham
Saturday, 17-08-2019 @5pm
Referee: Martin Atkinson

The away side has won the two previous Premier League meetings between these two sides, including Bournemouth’s 2-1 victory at Villa Park in April 2016. The two clubs are in the same division together for only the fourth season.

Aston Villa midfielder Douglas Luiz could make his first start, while full-backs Frederic Guilbert and Matt Targett are pushing for debuts. Jonathan Kodjia is out with a sprained ankle and joins James Chester and Kortney Hause on the sidelines.

Bournemouth winger Arnaut Danjuma is still nursing the foot injury which has delayed his start to the season. Lloyd Kelly, David Brook, Dan Gosling, Simon Francis, Lewis Cook and Junior Stanislas remain unavailable.

Brighton vs West Ham United
The American Express Community Stadium, East Sussex
Saturday, 17-08-2019 @5pm
Referee: Anthony Taylor

Brighton report no fresh injuries, with summer signing Neil Maupay among those pushing for a start after he scored as a substitute last weekend. The only certain absentees for the Seagulls are Jose Izquierdo, Yves Bissouma and Ezequiel Schelotto.

Sebastien Haller and Felipe Anderson are doubts for West Ham after receiving some heavy challenges last weekend. Mark Noble remains absent because of a calf injury but Jack Wilshere is fit after overcoming a dead leg.

Brighton are unbeaten against West Ham in four previous Premier League encounters, winning three – their most victories against one particular team. West Ham have lost all four top-flight away visits to Brighton. The Hammers have not beaten Brighton since a 6-0 Championship triumph in April 2012.

Everton vs Watford
Goodison Park, Liverpool
Saturday, 17-08-2019 @5pm
Referee: Lee Mason

Watford enter into the contest winless in all 13 away matches against Everton (D2, L11), despite leading in three of the last four fixtures at Goodison Park. Everton won six of the first nine Premier League meetings but have failed to win the last three.

Everton face a selection headache in central midfield with Andre Gomes a major doubt due to an ankle injury sustained last weekend. Morgan Schneiderlin is suspended and Fabian Delph is sidelined with a groin problem, meaning Jean-Philippe Gbamin is set to make his full debut.

Watford’s record signing Ismaila Sarr has begun training but is not yet fit. Fellow new arrival Danny Welbeck is available, along with midfielder Nathaniel Chalobah.

Norwich City vs Newcastle United
Carrow Road, Norfolk
Saturday, 17-08-2019 @5pm
Referee: Scott Attwell

Norwich winger Onel Hernandez has been ruled out for three months after injuring his knee in a fall, while Josip Drmic, Timm Klose and Christoph Zimmermann are also absent. Kenny McLean is a major doubt but Alex Tettey, Ibrahim Amadou and Mario Vrancic are all available.

Newcastle midfielder Jonjo Shelvey is fit but Allan Saint-Maximin is a doubt because of a hamstring strain. Andy Carroll remains sidelined, as do Florian Lejeune and DeAndre Yedlin.

Norwich have won just one of the last nine meetings (D3, L5). However, they are on a six-match unbeaten Premier League home run against the Magpies. The only away win in 14 Premier League matches between the sides was Newcastle’s 2-1 victory at Carrow Road in January 1994. The last four encounters have produced 24 goals – an average of six per game.

Southampton vs Liverpool
St. Mary’s Stadium, Kitende
Saturday, 17-08-2019 @5pm
Referee: Andre Marriner

Liverpool started from where they left off last season, walloping Norwich on opening weekend and then edging Chelsea on penalties to win the European super cup.

Jurgen Klopp’s side look a little heavy, much to their participation in major tournaments during the season break but it should just be a matter of time until they click again.

With the front three of Salah, Mane and Firmino starting to gel, the Kops should be targeting all three points off a Southampton side that lost on opening day.

Southampton have a fully-fit squad, with captain Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg now recovered from sickness. Summer signings Kevin Danso and Moussa Djenepo are in contention to make their debuts.

Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson, who was ever-present in the Premier League last season, could miss up to six weeks with a torn calf. Adrian is also a doubt due to an ankle injury, meaning 35-year-old Andy Lonergan could make his Reds debut.

Southampton have lost their last four Premier League matches against Liverpool, conceding 11 goals and scoring just once. Liverpool have been defeated in only one of the last six Premier League away meetings, having lost four of their first five fixtures at St. Mary’s. However, they have lost three matches against Southampton under Jurgen Klopp in all competitions, equalling his highest number of defeats against one club.

An 11th successive Premier League win on Saturday would equal the club’s record. The Reds could also match the club top-flight record of scoring multiple goals in 11 consecutive matches. Their only loss in 41 games in all competitions was January’s 2-1 defeat at Manchester City (W32, D8). Liverpool can secure five straight league wins on the road for the first time since a run of six victories ended in April 2014. Trent Alexander-Arnold could become just the third player in Premier League history to register an assist in six consecutive matches. Mo Salah has scored in all four of his Premier League appearances against Southampton.

Man City vs Tottenham Hotspur
Etihad Stadium, Manchester
Saturday, 17-08-2019 @7:30pm
Referee: Michael Oliver

After United vs Chelsea on opening weekend, Premier League fans are in for another treat as two other top-6 sides clash this weekend with City at home to Spurs.

Both side collected maximum points last weekend with City hitting West Ham for 5 while Spurs had to come from a goal down to defeat Aston Villa 3-1 at home.
The two sides clashed four times last season with City winning thrice while Spurs registered one victory-in the Champions League quarter-final.

Pep Guardiola’s side have the beating of Spurs and should be favourites going into Saturday’s game.

Manchester City midfielder Fernandinho could play his first game since the summer’s Copa America, while Sergio Aguero is in contention for a recall. Benjamin Mendy, who is continuing his rehabilitation after knee surgery, and Leroy Sane are long-term absentees.

Spurs are still without injured pair Dele Alli and Ryan Sessegnon and the suspended Son Heung-min and Juan Foyth. Ben Davies is nearing fitness and Giovani Lo Celso may be involved after his first full week’s training.

Manchester City are vying to win five consecutive league games against Spurs for the first time. Tottenham have taken just four points from their last nine Premier League visits to the Etihad Stadium (W1, D1, L7).

City have gone 30 years without defeat in their opening home league match in a top-flight season. They have won 16 and drawn eight since losing to Southampton in 1989. Pep Guardiola’s side have won 15 successive top-flight games. It’s a run that has only been bettered by City themselves, with 18 straight victories between August-December 2017. Manchester City won all five Premier League home matches against established top-six opposition in 2018-19, by an aggregate score of 15-3. Gabriel Jesus has scored 13 goals and provided five assists in his last 10 starts for City in all competitions. Raheem Sterling has scored four goals in his last three home games against Spurs in all competitions. Sergio Aguero has failed to scored in each of his last seven Premier League appearances against Spurs. He scored 10 goals in his first seven league matches versus them. Oleksandr Zinchenko has finished on the winning team in all 23 of his Premier League appearances, equalling the record set by David Silva two seasons ago.

Spurs could equal the club Premier League record of seven consecutive away defeats, set from August to December 2000 under George Graham. They only earned seven points against other established top-six sides last season, the joint-worst record with Manchester United in that mini-league. Tottenham went through the entire 2018-19 season without drawing a top-flight away game – the first time that has happened since Norwich City did likewise in 1980-81. Mauricio Pochettino was the first manager to win away from home against Pep Guardiola in a league match, doing so in February 2009 with Espanyol against Barcelona. Harry Kane has four goals in his past three Premier League appearances in August, having failed to score in any of his first 14 top-flight fixtures in the month.

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