Can you predict this weekends results?
Let’s be honest. In soccer, we all like to think that we can predict what the scores will be and take unrivalled joy in correctly guessing the outcomes of the biggest games. That sentiment is echoed by the soccer writers here at SQ, so we have decided to put our claims to the test with a weekly competition of predicting the results of all the Premier League games.
The outcome of each week’s predictions will be decided in a points format with a subsequent rankings table that will run until the end of the season to see who is the best predictor. The scoring system is as follows:
No points* - for failing to guess the correct result. (Example, you pick Chelsea to win against Aston Villa, but the match ends in a draw or a win for Aston Villa. Likewise, if you picked a draw but one of the sides wins)
*The score line is also voided in this event: if you pick Chelsea to win 3-0, but Aston Villa wins 3-0 instead, no points are awarded.
One Point - for correctly guessing the result without the score line. (Example, you pick Chelsea to win 3-0 but they win 4-0 instead, or you pick a 2-2 draw but it finishes 1-1)
Three Points - for correctly guessing the result and score line. (Example, you pick Chelsea to win 3-0, and they win 3-0)
Game Of The Week
White Hart Lane, London.
K.O Saturday - 12.45pm (GMT), 6.45am (CST), 7.45am (EST), 4.45am (PST)
Last Three Meetings At White Hart Lane:
Preview: Tottenham and Arsenal will do battle in the notoriously fierce North London Derby on Saturday with a lucrative Champions League spot on the agenda. This match is already one of the most anticipated and exciting of the entire season, mainly because of the hatred between the two sets of fans and the fact that this is the highest scoring fixture in Premier League history. All of this is heightened by the excellent current form of both sides (Arsenal are second and Tottenham fourth in the form table) and, arguably, the two most in-form players in the league right now; youth product Harry Kane and Chilean superstar Alexis Sanchez. They have a combined 38 goals in all competitions this season and have been stand-out performers as both sides sit within a place and two points of each other in the table.
But a hamstring injury for Sanchez leaves him as a doubt for the derby, which will be a headache for Arsene Wenger who is already without Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Abou Diaby, Mikel Arteta, Jack Wilshere, and Mathieu Debuchy. However, Danny Welbeck should return to the fold and Theo Walcott’s impressive performance on his first start of the season last week will be positives.
For Mauricio Pochettino’s side, they have a clean bill of health ahead of the pivotal meeting and Nabil Bentaleb’s return from the AFCON is a huge boost to the midfield. He and fellow youth graduate Ryan Mason were sensational in the shock 5-3 win against Chelsea last month, and this would be their first appearance together since then if both start.
Other Games To Watch
Goodison Park, Liverpool.
K.O Saturday - 5.30pm (GMT), 11.30am (CST), 12.30pm (EST), 9.30am (PST)
Preview: In addition to the North London Derby, Everton and Liverpool meet on Saturday in the equally feisty Merseyside Derby. This fixture is usually a crucial part of each side’s European aspirations and although that is applicable to the visitors, Roberto Martinez’ men are languishing in twelfth place after a poor season. However, the importance of bragging rights means that this will be a tough one to call regardless of form or table position, and Everton’s resilient win at Crystal Palace last weekend will give them confidence. They are without Steven Pienaar, Tim Howard, and Leon Osman in the late kick off, although James McCarthy will face a late fitness test as he recovers from a hamstring injury. For Liverpool, Daniel Sturridge’s goal-scoring return at West Ham last week is a welcome boost and he may well be given his first start since the 3-0 thumping of Tottenham in September. Brendan Rodgers’ side eventually saw off Bolton in the FA Cup on Wednesday, and it came at a cost as Lazar Markovic limped off in the second half. Rodgers will be hoping that there are no more lasting effects from the draining cup tie as Liverpool look to continue their brilliant recent form.
Upton Park, London.
K.O Sunday - 4.15pm (GMT), 10.15am (CST), 11.15am (EST), 8.15am (PST)
Preview: Yet another cracking fixture takes place on Sunday as the lofty Hammers welcome Louis Van Gaal’s improving Red Devils to Upton Park. Home advantage for Sam Allardyce’s side will be vital to their chances of gaining another famous victory after seeing off Liverpool and Manchester City earlier in the season. Points from this may well be essential to their hopes of a coveted European spot as last week’s defeat to Liverpool kick-started a torrid run of fixtures. The Hammers take on Southampton, Tottenham, Crystal Palace, Chelsea, and Arsenal in their next five outings after Manchester United’s trip this weekend. If they can exit this run with a minimum of nine points, then West Ham will have a great opportunity to secure a Europa League spot. But equally, United’s need for points is just as big with two of their closest rivals -Tottenham and Arsenal- going head-to-head this weekend. If Van Gaal’s side can grab a win, they will put some breathing space between them and the others in the fight for Champions League football. Michael Carrick is the only confirmed absentee from what should be a goal-studded matchup.
Last Week’s Winner: Orion Johnson (14 Points)
Orion blew away the competition with two records: the highest weekly point tally and the most correct scores in one week. He correctly predicted Everton’s narrow 1-0 win away at Crystal Palace, Manchester United’s comfortable 3-1 victory against Leicester, Sunderland’s crucial 2-0 defeat of Burnley, and Tottenham’s thumping 3-0 win at improving West Brom. Congratulations Orion!
Leutrim’s lead at the top is cut to just four points after an irregular one-point tally last week. His nearest challenger is Mark Philipson, who has made the second spot his own with another great week of scoring. Noah, Sam, and Luke are not out of the picture either as just ten points separate top and fifth.
But we here at SQ want to know what you think. Send us your predictions for all ten Premier League games in the comments section below and we will add your name to the rankings table and weekly scores, so you can go head-to-head with our writers to earn the title of “SQ Predictor Champion.”
Edited by Lauren Anderson.
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