Sunday's Premier League action sees four games taking place, including a cracker at Stamford Bridge. George Pitts looks ahead to the action.
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Crystal Palace v Wolves
- 1230 BST kick-off
Wolves were impressive last year in their first season back in the Premier League, then Nuno Espirito Santo made what looked like good additions to his squad so they could deal with the busy Europa League schedule, but that has not been the case.
They are one of two teams (Watford being the other) still without a win in the Premier League this term, drawing three of their opening five.
They were beaten by Braga in midweek and will be worried if it again affects their league form here.
You would normally fancy them to get something at Selhurst Park, where the Eagles have shown weaknesses, but due to their surprise struggles this term it is probably best to stay away from the scoreline.
Palace were well fancied for relegation but they have started the campaign nicely and it could be a tough afternoon for the visitors.
The hosts have improved in terms of creating chances, with 22 shots in their last home outing, while Wolves have started games slower, possibly due to tired legs, scoring just one first-half goal this season.
With this in mind, backing Palace to open the scoring looks a good option but we'll sit this one out.
Prediction: Crystal Palace 1-1 Wolves (Sky Bet odds: 9/2)
Best bet: Crystal Palace to score first at evens
- None of Crystal Palace’s last 29 Premier League goals (exc. own goals) have been scored by a substitute; only Newcastle (38) and Norwich (35) are on longer current such streaks.
- Wolves have failed to win their last six Premier League matches (D3 L3) – boss Nuno Espírito Santo has never gone seven league games without a win his managerial career.
West Ham v Manchester United
- 1400 BST kick-off on Sky Sports Premier League
West Ham spent well in the summer and they have been rewarded with a decent start, collecting eight points from 15 and going in to the weekend just two points adrift of Man City in second.
They secured a famous 3-1 win over Manchester United at the London Stadium early last season and they will be confident of pulling off a result again here.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side were in Europa League action on Thursday, a slim 1-0 win over Astana, and they have injuries to contend with - Paul Pogba, Luke Shaw, Anthony Martial and Eric Bailly are all notably out.
Mason Greenwood, at just 17 years old, scored at Old Trafford and could keep his place, but looking at the likely line-ups the Hammers could have plenty of joy going forward.
Record signing Sebastien Haller has scored three in his last three appearances, taking 10 shots in that time, and an anytime price on the Frenchman holds some appeal at 9/4 while he's a more tempting 4/1 in a score and win double.
The Hammers are more than capable of pulling off a win at the London Stadium, but due to United's current unpredictability we prefer markets in the later matches in terms of recommended bets.
Prediction: West Ham 2-1 Man United (Sky Bet odds: 10/1)
- West Ham United have won 48 points from their last 30 Premier League games (W14 D6 L10); the best record of the ‘non-big six’ sides over this period and just one point fewer than Tottenham Hotspur (49).
- West Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini has won a Premier League game against three different Manchester United managers (David Moyes, Louis van Gaal and Jose Mourinho). He could become the first ever manager to beat four different Red Devils managers in the competition.
- Manchester United’s starting XI has had an average age of just 25 years and 51 days; the youngest in the Premier League this season and younger than any previous Premier League season by a Manchester United side, ahead of 1995-96 (25y 345d).
- Since the start of last season, Manchester United have taken (16), scored (11) and missed (5) more penalties in the Premier League than any other team.
Arsenal v Aston Villa
- 1400 BST kick-off on Sky Sports Premier League
You would like to think Arsenal will one day learn from their defensive mistakes, but they don't seem capable and Watford capitalised on that by coming from two goals down to draw with the Gunners at Vicarage Road.
That point will feel like a defeat and they will be hoping their strong record at the Emirates helps them to make amends on Sunday.
Dean Smith's Aston Villa, meanwhile, are pointless on the road and have a more appealing run of fixtures coming up, with Burnley, Norwich and Brighton in their next three after this.
A young Gunners side, with a senior spine, beat Eintracht Frankfurt 3-0 in the Europa League on Thursday and they could now do with a victory here to keep the pace with their top-four rivals.
They collected 45 points from 57 at home last term and they have four from six this time, so Fortress Emirates could play an important part in this clash.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored in that Europa League victory to keep up his impressive start with six goals in as many games.
Although he is odds-on to score here, Aubameyang should play in a central role in Alexandre Lacazette's absence and backing the Gabon striker to bag a brace at around 16/5 is much more appealing.
But the better market to look at is the old trusty Granit Xhaka to be carded. Simple? Yes. Effective? Hopefully.
The Swiss midfielder is well known for his tendency to get booked - he received an incredible 18 for club and country last term. That makes the 13/5 available on him to be shown a card here all the more generous.
Xhaka is up against a tricky midfield with the likes of the often-fouled Jack Grealish, Conor Hourihane and John McGinn. Given their ability on the ball and going forward and Arsenal's lack of defensive awareness, Xhaka could be forced to leave a foot in or commit a cynical foul as he so often does.
Jon Moss is the man in charge. He has dished out 10 yellows and a red in just three Premier League fixtures this term and Xhaka is good value to join that growing list.
Prediction: Arsenal 3-1 Aston Villa (Sky Bet odds: 9/1)
Best bet: Granit Xhaka to be carded at 13/5
- Arsenal have allowed their opponents 96 shots this season so far in the Premier League; the most of any side in 2019-20 and since 2003-04 only 13 teams have allowed more in their first five Premier League games of a single season (out of a possible 340).
- Of the 153 players to have attempted 30+ shots in the Premier League since Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s Arsenal debut in February 2018, the Gabon striker has scored the highest proportion (26.2%). Only Mohamed Salah (39) has scored more than Aubameyang since his league debut for the Gunners.
Chelsea v Liverpool
- 1630 BST kick-off on Sky Sports Premier League
The standout Premier League fixture of the weekend, as Chelsea are faced with the task of ending Liverpool's 100 per cent start to the campaign.
Frank Lampard's side are in better shape to do so than when they faced another top-four rival in Manchester United on the first day of the season. They have not lost in the league since then, winning two of their last three and scoring five last week at Wolves.
The Champions League defeat against Valencia on Tuesday is a minor setback (Liverpool also lost at Napoli), but the fact they have not kept a clean sheet yet this term is a long-term worry, with Lampard continuing his theme at Derby of attempting to outscore the opposition in open shootouts.
This time, his defence will have to be on top form if Chelsea are to get anything from the game, as they come up against one of, if not the, best front-threes in the league.
Roberto Firmino has been fantastic, scoring just twice but playing a key role in the Reds' play going forward and laying on three assists.
The value is hardly on any of that trio to get on the score sheet, but backing them to net multiple goals is an option while a specific method of scoring is another.
Sadio Mane is their joint-top scorer with four goals, continuing where he left off last season. The Senegal forward scored six headers (a joint-league high) in 2018/19 and showed a knack of making late runs at the far post and clearing up scraps in the box.
He is yet to score with his head this term despite four attempts, but 12/1 for him to nod home at Stamford Bridge looks good value, in a game where a loose ball being met in the box could prove the difference.
All of the top-six sides are capable of beating the Reds on their day, but Klopp's men are playing efficiently and professionally at the minute and Chelsea possess frailties which the visitors can exploit.
Prediction: Chelsea 1-2 Liverpool (Sky Bet odds: 8/1)
Best bet: Sadio Mane to score a header at 12/1
- Chelsea have won just one of their last nine Premier League meetings with Liverpool (D5 L3), beating them 1-0 in May 2018 thanks to an Olivier Giroud strike.
- Liverpool have lost just once in their last 44 Premier League matches (W36 D7 L1) and are unbeaten in their last 22 (W18 D4 L0), their longest such run in PL history. In fact, Liverpool last went 23 league games unbeaten in November 1990 (23).
- Sadio Mane has scored 49 goals in 97 Premier League games for Liverpool. Should he net in this fixture, he’d become the 10th player to reach 50 goals for the club in the competition; more than any other Premier League team (Man Utd, 9).
Odds correct as of 1400 BST on 20/09/19
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