Seasons and match-days now running in full swing. We’re bringing you up to speed with all the drama and net-blasting goals and maybe a little bit of gossip as well. Stay in touch with the latest on football with TF Kicks: Weekly Football Update.
The Premier League’s Matchday 9 was power packed with some big results like Chelsea’s 7-0 thumping of Norwich, Watford’s win at Goodison Park against Everton, and finally Liverpool’s rampage at Old Trafford to close the premier league weekend.
After a week of Carabao Cup fixtures, where Man City’s saw their 5-year reign came to an end, the premier league will resume with some interesting fixtures to look forward to.
LIVERPOOL AIMING TO CONTINUE THEIR FORM
Liverpool have had a fantastic run of results in the last two weeks. Following the thrashing of Watford, beating Atletico Madrid at home and after Mo Salah’s magical hattrick at Old Trafford against Manchester United, the Reds will continue their momentum against fifth placed Brighton who look like a solid unit this season, collecting 15 points from 9 games under Graham Potter’s dynamic leadership.
MANCHESTER UNITED LOOK TO PICK UP THE PIECES AFTER EMBARRASSMENT OF DREAMS
Leaving aside an extremely professional and clinical performance from the Merseyside reds, Manchester United have a lot to think about where the defence and the midfield are concerned. The 5-0 thrashing they endured, with added pain after the half-time substitute Pogba was sent off for a reckless challenge, barely a minute after turning over the ball which resulted in a goal at the other end. With fans gunning for the dear manager Olé’s neck all over social media, 7th place United travel to 6th place Tottenham, who are also trying to recuperate after a hard fought 1-0 defeat to West Ham last weekend.
It’s certainly going to be a battle of wits, tactically, between two managers Nuno and Olé as well as on the pitch, both teams boasting of star-studded attacking line-ups. Man United’s Instagram account has been posting pictures of Raphaël Varane in training, which is highly encouraging, given his performances in all of his games until he got injured while playing for France at the UEFA Nations League.
RANIERI’S MEN LOOKING TO CAPITALISE AT THE EXPENSE OF SAINTS’ POOR FORM
The frequency with which Watford change managers, it almost feels like they do it just for the kicks. The Hornets changed five managers after getting promoted in 2015 to the Premier League before eventually going down in the 2019-2020 season, and changing another 3 in 12 months during their quest to come back to the top flight again. They sacked Spanish coach Xisco Muñoz just after 8 games in charge and replaced him with the famous Italian tinker-man, Claudio Ranieri.
After a disastrous start to his Watford career against Liverpool, Claudio Ranieri’s men won handsomely against Everton to kickstart their route to survival. They will now face Southampton looking to build on their result from the previous game. The Saints on the other hand are on a poor run of form winning just 1 of their 9 fixtures so far, sitting 16th in the table.
SATURDAY BLUES AT ST. JAMES’ PARK
Just 1 place shy of the bottom, acquiring 4 points out of 9 games, dripping in controversy, Newcastle United host top-of-the-table Chelsea. The hosts, just like the relegation company they’re keeping at the moment, have not been able to secure a single victory this season, leaving fans frustrated even after their new owners were deemed to be a ray of light. It looks like the ghosts of 2009 and 2016 are coming back to haunt the magpies as they struggle to register any sort of team rhythm.
On the other hand, Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea is becoming a force to reckon with, showing great cohesion with every passing game. They thrashed last-place Norwich City 7-0 last weekend, and it seems almost inevitable that they will run rampage at St. James’ Park again this Saturday.
MANCHESTER CITY’S TRICKY ENCOUNTER AGAINST CRYSTAL PALACE
After winning 5 League cups from 2016 until last year, Man City’s supremacy in the competition was finally ended by West Ham United in a penalty shootout. Pep Guardiola’s cityzen’s will now look to overcome the disappointment against Crystal Palace. The Eagles have proved to be an awkward opponent for Pep Guardiola during his time in England, being the only London club to beat the Spaniard’s team at home in the League.
The fixture promises to be an attractive game should Palace live up to their name as giant killers on Saturday.
GUNNING THE FOXES
Arsenal, now at 10th place, travel to Leicester at 9th place, both teams sharing 14 points with Man United in 7th and Everton in 8th, only separated by goal difference. The foxes have won their last 2 on the trot, and Arsenal come in with a thumping 3-1 victory over Aston Villa last weekend, not able to hold on to a precious clean sheet after a dominating 3-0 lead.
Leicester came away with a marginal 2-1 victory over Brentford, who were continuously asking questions about their defence, and testing Kasper Schmeichel every now and again. It’s certainly going to be a sizzling match-up considering recent form and attacking prowess of both the teams. Seems like the actual battles will be fought in defence.
WEST HAM UNITED’S VILLA CONUNDRUM
David Moyes’ West Ham United are having one of their best seasons so far sitting 4th in the Premier league table, comfortably topping their Europa league and now sealing their place in the Carabao Cup quarterfinals after winning a tense penalty shootout against Manchester City.
Their high-flying form could get even better against Aston Villa, an opponent they haven’t lost against in their last 5 outings with Villa’s last league victory against the hammers coming in 2015. The Villans on the other hand are winless in the last 3 premier league games and they will look to change that on Sunday. Another promising game to look forward to.
WOLVES ON THE HUNT FOR 4 WINS IN 5 GAMES
After seeing their beloved Nuno Espírito Santo move to Tottenham Hotspur at the start of the 2021/22 season, Wolves appointed another Portuguese coach in the form of Bruno Lage who arrived at the Molineux from Benfica. After experiencing a difficult start to life in the premier league, Lage’s Wolves have hunted in packs and won 3 of their last 4 league fixtures.
As they close matchday 10 on Monday, Wolves will look to make it 4 wins in 5 games when they face Everton, who are bruised from their defeat against Watford.
Other games you can catch are 18th place Burnley hosting 12th place Brentford, who did put up quite a fight against Leicester last weekend, and bottom-of-the-table Norwich City host Leeds United, who are just 1 place above the drop zone in 17th, 3 points ahead of Burnley in 18th place.
….AND SOME NEWS
After toiling hard with Barcelona’s financial situation, losing club legend Lionel Messi to PSG in one of the most dramatic exits of all time, Ronald Koeman’s woes with the Blaugrana have been put to an end after their defeat to Rayo Vallecano on Wednesday.
After closing last season and nearly missing out on the title, FC Barcelona have been crippled with off field issues since and the matters have had a direct impact on the club’s performances on the field. The Catalan club are 9th in La Liga and are scraping for their life to make it to the Round of 16 in the Champions League.
Koeman’s exit puts legendary midfielder Xavi Hernandez on the list potential candidates to replace the Dutchman. Other names linked to the Barcelona hot seat are Andrea Pirlo, Roberto Martinez, and Ajax’s Erik ten Hag.
Another weekend approaches with some exciting matches to look forward to! Watch this space next week for our weekly football update. Until then, keep kicking!
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Manchester United Instagram | Chelsea Instagram | Burnley Instagram | Arsenal Instagram | Leeds United Instagram | Liverpool Twitter | Watford Twitter | Manchester City Twitter | Wolves Twitter | West Ham United Twitter