It’s the return of the Premier League this week, after the FA Cup third round, and here are four mid-week fixtures you need to be looking out for…
Manchester City v Everton – When the two played in the Capital One Cup last week it provided a thrilling clash.
Everton looked the more promising of the two and could easily have scored more than the two goals that they did. Both sides in their FA Cup matches won convincingly, and with City’s form being inconsistent, this match should prove to be exciting and promising.
Fans eyes will be on players like Barkley and Aguero, both of whom could easily run the show come Wednesday night. One player worth mentioning is Deulofeu, whose pace was hard to stop against the City defence. This match should be an exciting one when these two meet.
Southampton v Watford – Both teams seem equally matched this season. Watford have completely surpassed expectations so far, producing some shock results such as their dominating win against Liverpool, taking a share of the points against Chelsea – form which has seen them rise to 9th in the league.
Southampton, on the other hand, are still trying to establish what is an acceptable position for them to finish in the table. Unlike Watford, they have been below par compared to what others expected from them, with a need for a couple of fresh strikers and wingers coming to the fore.
This season they have highlighted just how much they needed to sign winger Eljero Elia last summer, after he helped them to a 7th place finish. This season has been different with Saints struggling to win, and with both teams wanting all three points, this could either be a really exciting match, or equally an exciting draw with the points shared.
Liverpool v Arsenal – Liverpool will be desperate for all three points after not being able to register a victory in their last three, and their inconsistency has repeatedly let them down this term.
Though they have claimed big scalps, such as Manchester City, Klopp does not yet seem to know his best side or system. With so many of his players getting hamstring injuries, it would suggest that his high press tactics are not as successful as he initially hoped they would be.
The fact their youth, with good players like Benteke and Enrique, could not comfortably beat Exeter, highlights just how little Klopp knows about his side.
They come up against the league leaders, Arsenal, who, if they are true title contenders, will need to comfortably dispose of the Reds, due to a tough couple of games coming up against Stoke and Chelsea.
The Gunners will want all three points here, to prove they really can fight for the title.
Tottenham v Leicester – In a match where much was made of Vardy missing and Mahrez benched, Leicester proved themselves to be the “real deal” with a good performance against Tottenham in the FA Cup on Sunday, and were arguably unlucky to leave White Hart Lane without a cemented place in the fourth round.
Leicester looked to have pulled off a coup by getting Demarai Gray from Birmingham City just a few days before, who was proving to be a problem against the Tottenham defence.
Both teams will be needing all three points to keep up their Champions League hopes, aware of how, if either team lose, the result could impact their chances of finishing in the top four. This should be another exciting performance if both sides have the energy, and Leicester will be hoping to get their revenge.
So, with some cracking matches to look out for in the Premier League this week, it makes weeknight football seem a lot more exciting and worthwhile.
Its worth noting that if you are struggling with sleep at the moment, take a look towards the Newcastle v Manchester United game on Tuesday, with Louis van Gaal’s side’s playing style currently being boring enough to send anyone to sleep.