As we open the second day of EPL Game Week 7, let’s recap events from day 1.
The two Mancunian clubs remain undefeated and have identical records, with City sitting in first place by virtue of its goal differential of +20 vs. United’s +19.
Chelsea’s loss to City drops them one point behind third place Tottenham, who wrecked Huddersfield 4-0.
Like Oumar Niasse did last week, this week Diafra Sakho came off the bench to save the game and probably his manager’s job with his winner in the 90th minute that lifted West Ham to victory over Swansea.
Bournemouth and Leicester battled to a 0-0 draw that leaves both foundering near the bottom of the table.
West Brom and Watford shared the spoils in a 2-2 tie after Richarlison’s dramatic late goal.
And Stoke saw off Southampton with a late winner from Peter Crouch.
Oh yeah, I almost forgot. Crystal Palace are 0 for 7 and still haven’t scored... and play Chelsea next.
Which brings us to today. Here’s what’s on tap:
Arsenal vs Brighton
A perennial EPL powerhouse hosts a newly-promoted side who travel to the Emirates in the midst of a serious striker crisis. Tomer Hemed is suspended, Sam Baldock is out injured, and Glenn Murray has been struggling with an ankle problem. Brighton haven’t beaten Arsenal since 1982, and I don’t see them ending that losing streak today. I expect Arsenal to lay siege, and Brighton to have little with which to counter. Investment in Arsenal’s offensive and defensive assets therefore seems prudent. But aside from Brighton’s center backs, who will be busy, I see no attractive fantasy options in Brighton’s squad.
Ronald Koeman was spared a fan revolt when Oumar Niasse rose from the bench to fire his team to victory last weekend, thus avoiding a fourth consecutive league loss. But Koeman’s brief respite from the pressure ended when the Toffees put up a disappointing 2-2 tie with Apollon Limassol in the midweek Europa League match. Koeman remains positive and has shaken off the Limassol game: “I was shit after (Limassol), but now I am different.” He’d better be. A poor performance from his side today will have supporters calling for his head.
Liverpool have scored more goals against Newcastle than any other club. And this week, Sadio Mane returns from suspension to join Philippe Coutinho, Mohamed Salah, and Roberto Firmino in one of the most fearsome attack squadrons in English football. Surely Rafa Benitez has been up nights this week, plotting out strategies to stymie his former club when the Reds visit St. James Park today. He’s faced Pool as Newcastle’s gaffer once before: a 2-2 draw in April of 2016 shortly after his appointment as manager.
So turn on the tube, put your feet up, and join members from around the globe as we discuss today’s EPL action as it unfolds!