Premier League Week 25
It’s Matchdays 28 and 29 for the bulk of the Premier League this week (Chelsea and Brighton & Hove Albion will be playing 27 and 28), and each club will be playing twice this week. When the weekend is complete, we’ll have nine matches left, and chances are, the top six will be the top six when all is said and done on 12 May, with maybe only the order left to firm up.
As always, the number in parenthesis before each club reflects their spot on our Power Rankings, and we’ll try to keep this list updated as the week progresses. Home teams are listed first, and winners will be indicated in bold. In the event of a draw, both teams will be placed in italics.
Tuesday, 26 February 2019
7:45pm GMT/2:45pm EST
(17) Cardiff City 0-3 (12) Everton
(20) Huddersfield Town 1-0 (8) Wolverhampton Wanderers
(15) Leicester City 2-0 (16) Brighton & Hove Albion
8:00pm GMT/3:00pm EST
(14) Newcastle United 2-0 (11) Burnley
Wednesday, 27 February 2019
7:45pm GMT/2:45pm EST
(3) Arsenal 5-1 (9) AFC Bournemouth
(18) Southampton 2-0 (19) Fulham **MATCH OF THE WEAK**
8:00pm GMT/3:00pm EST
(5) Chelsea 2-0 (7) Tottenham Hotspur
(13) Crystal Palace 1-3 (4) Manchester United
(2) Liverpool 5-0 (6) Watford **MATCH OF THE WEEK**
(1) Manchester City 1-0 (10) West Ham United
Saturday, 2 March 2019
12:30pm GMT/5:30am EST
(7) Tottenham Hotspur 1-1 (3) Arsenal
3:00pm GMT/10:00am EST
(9) AFC Bournemouth 0-1 (1) Manchester City
(16) Brighton & Hove Albion 1-0 (20) Huddersfield Town
(11) Burnley v (13) Crystal Palace
(4) Manchester United 3-2 (18) Southampton
(8) Wolverhampton Wanderers 2-0 (17) Cardiff City
5:30pm GMT/12:30pm EST
(10) West Ham United 2-0 (14) Newcastle United
Sunday, 3 March 2019
The Best of the Week
Our nominal “Match of the Week” will feature league leading Liverpool hosting upstart Watford. The Hornets started the season strong, winning their first four before coming back down to earth. However, they’ve lost only twice in their last 12 matches (5-5-2), settling back into the top ten and holding their own against some of the elite clubs in the league. With Manchester City winning the Carabao Cup, the Europa League spot for winning that trophy will likely pass to the 6th place club, so Watford may be able to find themselves in position like Burnley last season and play in European competition.
However, the Hornets will have to get past Liverpool, who has still only lost once on the season, in order to give themselves a chance of challenging for 6th or 7th (unless the Hornets can somehow win the FA Cup for their own spot in Europa League). Liverpool has a bit of an easy March ahead of them – other than leg two of their Champions League matchup against Bayern Munich mid-month – and won’t play another team currently in the top ten until a 31 March match against Tottenham Hotspur. Will the leaders be able to take advantage, or can a club like Watford catch them looking ahead to the match in Germany and come away with a surprise victory?
Speaking of Burnley, they are in the midst of an eight match unbeaten streak and should be favored – on paper at least – in both matches this week (though as I write this, they currently trail Newcastle United 1-0). It would take quite a streak for them to match their 54 point output from last season – they would need to score 24 points over their last 11 matches – but finishing the season strong after struggles in the latter half of 2018 would be a strong foundation for another solid season next year. Plus, they are only six points above 18th place Southampton and the dreaded relegation spot, so that should be incentive as well.
Finally, my favorite team – the Cherries of AFC Bournemouth – look poised to drop all six points this week. First, they play at Arsenal, and they haven’t even drawn an away match, and have lost eight in a row away from Dean Court, on their way to a 3-0-10 road record on the season. They’ve also been outscored by 18 points on the road, so, yeah, hard to win matches when that happens.
Then on Saturday, they have the pleasure of hosting defending champion Manchester City, who are looking to keep pace with a Liverpool club entering that easy March stretch. A top six finish for the Cherries is looking like an extreme long shot at this point, though a top ten finish could be in the making should they escape with some points this week. Six would be amazing, three-four would be just fine, but coming away with zero would be absolutely terrible.
Until next time…
Last Update: 3 March 2019, 4:45pm EST