It’s Match Week 5 in the EPL and already we have our first casualty in the Sack Race. Can Liverpool come back from their humiliating defeat against Man City? Will Arsenal follow it up with another victory or stutter? Can Tottenham follow it up with another victory after their wins over Everton and Borrusia Dortmund? These and many more we have analyzed for your weekly EPL review talking points.
CRYSTAL PALACE VS SOUTHAMPTON
Frank De Boer was given the boot after just four games into the season with all those games ending in a loss for his team. He has been replaced by Roy Hodgson, who has a wealth of experience in coaching. He becomes the oldest man to be coaching in the league, taking over that accolade from Arsene Wenger. They face a Southampton side that have won one and drawn two of the four games they have been involved in. In the EPL both teams have met ten (10) times with Southampton winning six (6) and Palace managing two (2) wins with the remaining ending in draw. In last season’s campaign both teams cancelled each other out by winning on their respective home grounds. The teams will be going hard for the win but Crystal Palace are in a difficult position as they stand a chance of not gaining a point after a possible eight (8) game run since their last 3 matches comes on at Manchester City Away, Manchester United Away and Chelsea Home.
HUDDERSFIELD VS LEICESTER
It’s been a dream appearance in the Premier League for Huddersfield, they tasted their first defeat at the home of West Ham in game week 4. They are yet to concede at home this season. Leicester on the other hand has lost both their away games this season at the hands of Man Utd and Arsenal and also lost their home fixture against Chelsea. This is the first time both teams are meeting in a Premier League fixture Huddersfield have failed to keep a clean sheet in each of their last 11 matches against Leicester City in all competitions, last recording a shutout in November 1987 with Lee Martin in between the sticks that day.
Leicester have lost five of their last seven Premier League matches (W1 D1 L5), this after Shakespeare lost only two of his opening 10 games in charge of the team in the competition.
LIVERPOOL VS BURNLEY
The last time out, Liverpool were humiliated by a 5 star performance from a rampant Manchester City team and also blew a 2:1 lead at home to Sevilla to end the match at 2:2. A lot has been said about the attacking flair of the Liverpool team but in the match against city that was nonexistent with just some flashes of how deadly they can be when they are at full throttle. The capitulation of the team after the sending off of Sadio Mane was a nightmare of a seen for football fans across the globe. A very positive response from the team will go a long way to help put that dreadful performance against city behind them. But with Sadio Mane missing, Liverpool have won just five of the 12 Premier League games that he hasn’t started since August 2016 (42%), compared to 63% of games when he has started (19/30). Phillipe Coutinho will be available for the game and will be hoping to put in a great performance to push his long purported summer transfer saga between Barcelona to the back ground.
NEWCASTLE VS STOKE
Newcastle after losing their first two games of the season has gone on to win their next two games against West Ham and Swansea and a win over Stoke will represent their best point return after five games since the 2011/2012 season. Coach Rafa Benitez will be in the dugout for this game after missing the last fixture due to ill health. The Spaniard have lost once in eleven meetings against the stoke boss. Stoke after their impressive showing against Arsenal and Man Utd will be hoping to add to that impressive run. Two goal hero in the game against United, Eric Choupo-Moting will be hoping to continue his impressive showing for the Potters against the Magpies.
TOTTENHAM VS SWANSEA
Tottenham will be hoping their win over Borrusia Dortmund will be the one to break the voodoo of their winless run at Wembley in the EPL after losing to Chelsea and drawing with Burnley. They take on a Swansea side who are devastated by their 1- 0 home defeat to Newcastle and Manager Paul Clement will be calling for a response. Tottenham have never lost to Swansea in the Premier League, winning 10 of 12 meetings in the competition (D2).
Swansea has lost all six of their Premier League away games versus Spurs, shipping 15 goals and failing to score in three.
CHELSEA VS ARSENAL
Chelsea host Arsenal in one of two games on Super Sunday, both teams won their last game 2-1 and 3-0 respectively with Arsenal’s win coming at the heels of a poor showing against Liverpool where they were hammered 4-0. Another big test for Arsene Wenger and his men against the champions and a good result for the gunners will boost confidence and atmosphere at the Arsenal camp. After winning just four of the previous 16, Chelsea have won their last five home Premier League games against Arsenal, since a 3-5 defeat in October 2011.
The Gunners haven’t kept a Premier League clean sheet at Stamford Bridge in their last 12 visits there, shipping at least twice in each of the eight.
MANCHESTER UNITED VS EVERTON
The second game of Super Sunday comes on between United at home to Everton. The last time out, United blew a 2-1 lead to draw 2-2 with Stoke City, their first drop points of the season after a blistering start to life in the Premier League. United will be looking to bounce back from their draw with a win over Everton at home to send a strong message to the other title contenders that they are in for the long haul. A win over Everton will give the men of Mourinho a strong belief in themselves and put them in good stead to challenge for the title though still early days yet. Everton have had a mixed season so far lying sixteenth with four (4) points from 4 games. In Europe they were washed aside by a rampant Atalanta team by 3 goals to nil making it a back to back 3 nil losses with the other one coming at the hands of Everton at home. Rooney will be returning to the Theatre of Dreams as an opponent for this fixture, whiles he is sure to receive a rousing outcome, united will be hoping to ensure he is well shackled to prevent him from having a telling impact on the game. King Luka, will be making his debut against his former employers and will be hoping to continue with his goal scoring spree.
Manchester United have won 18 and lost just one of their last 24 Premier League home games against Everton, losing 0-1 in December 2013 while former Everton boss David Moyes was in charge of them. Everton have lost more Premier League games versus Man Utd than against any other side in the competition (33).Sunderland still have more Premier League away wins in 2017 so far (2) than Everton (1).Jose Mourinho has faced Koeman more times without winning (5) than any other manager in the Premier League. Romelu Lukaku has scored four goals in his first four Premier League apps for Manchester United, only two players have scored five goals in their opening five games for the Red Devils (5 – Louis Saha and Robin van Persie). Rooney (or Schneiderlin) could become the eighth different player to score against Manchester United having already played for them in the Premier League (Hughes, Dublin, Ince, Gillespie, Berg, Campbell and Welbeck). Gylfi Sigurdsson has been directly involved in six goals in his last six Premier League appearances against Man Utd (three goals, three assists), including netting in his last appearance at Old Trafford in April for Swansea.
Emmanuel Danso Nyante