A look at the second round of matches in the English Premier League this coming week. Last week we went 6-4 and are hoping to do better this week.
Blackburn v Hull City
Both teams got great victories last weekend with Blackburn winning at Everton and Hull winning at home to Fulham. While last week’s victory was great for Hull, I think they will find Blackburn a little tougher competition and I expect Blackburn to win this one.
Fulham v Arsenal
Losing to Hull was a major disappointment for Fulham and it does not get any easier with Arsenal the visitors to Craven Cottage. Arsenal have a Champions League qualifying game against FC Twente following this game but I expect that Arsenal will have more than enough to win this London derby.
Liverpool v Middlesbrough
This is a trap game for Liverpool with the Champions League game against Standard Liege following this in midweek.
Newcastle v Bolton
Newcastle were really impressive in drawing at Old Trafford in week one. They looked a yard faster and fitter than last year and if they are going to be a top ten team this year Bolton is the kind of team they should be beating at home. With Michael Owens expected to be fit again I expect Newcastle to win this one in front of their own fans.
Stoke City v Aston Villa
It is going to be a long season for Stoke fans in the Premiership this season as I expect them to be in the relegation zone all year. Villa has too much speed and class for Stoke and I expect Villa to win this one,
Tottenham v Sunderland
These are two teams that had very disappointing matches in the opening weekend. Spurs spent big this season and are under a lot of pressure to challenge the top four this year. Luckily for them Sunderland are a very different team on the road and I expect Spurs to get their first win of the season here.
West Brom v Everton
West Brom hung in with Arsenal at the Emirates and will fancy their chances against an Everton that threw away a lead against Blackburn last week. The Hawthorns will be rocking for this won and I expect them to help West Brom to get their first points of the season in a low scoring game.
Man City v West Ham
It was a horrible week for Manchester City with a loss to FC Midtjylland in the UEFA Cup and then the 4-2 hammering to Aston Villa. West Ham got off to a good start beating Wigan and home last week and I think they will get a draw at the City of Manchester Stadium.
Wigan Athletic v Chelsea
Chelsea looked so impressive in destroying Portsmouth last week and I expect them to have no trouble beating Wigan by two or three goals.
Portsmouth v Man Utd
The game of the weekend is undoubtedly the 3rd meeting between Portsmouth and Manchester United in just over a month. This is a must-win game for United as they follow Portsmouth with trips to Liverpool and Chelsea. United cannot afford to lose here and fall potentially 11 points behind their title rivals in early September.
Fratton Park is a difficult place to play at the best of times and I expect a cracking atmosphere under the lights. Unless United are unleashing a new center-forward here I expect them to struggle against a good Pompey team looking for redemption after last week’s hammering at Chelsea. This one looks like a draw which will make United’s champions rivals extremely happy.