Tag Archives: Everton

EPL Week 33, Game of the Week

13 Apr

Recap: The Manchester Derby was a delightful match, featuring some of the top players in world football. It was Manchester United that came away with a 4-2 win, and a game in which the Red Devil’s dominated.

This Week:

Chelsea vs Manchester United

Chelsea vs Manchester United

Saturday, April 18th, 11:30am CST, Stamford Bridge

Why this game is intriguing: Form. Again. Manchester United is in splendid form, particularly after beating rivals Manchester City at Old Trafford 4-2 just last week. Louis van Gaal’s men are currently in 3rd place, just 1 point behind Arsenal, and 8 points (and 1 game) behind 1st place Chelsea. Now 4 points clear of City, the Red Devils have all but reached their #1 goal at the start of the season: Finish in the top 4, and earn a UEFA Champions League spot. United is one of, if not the biggest club in the world, with a globalized fan base. Their story this season, while not yet complete, is absolutely worth the headlines and the news coverage they receive. Chelsea have won their last 3 matches in a row, and having been eliminated from the Champions League and the FA Cup, winning the league is their only chance of getting a trophy this season, minus the Capital One Cup.

Other Reasons to Watch: The Manchester United midfield is something to behold, and while it did take awhile, this unit is the strength of the club. Marouane Fellaini is showing glimpses of the player he was at Everton before David Moyes brought him with to Manchester. He scores, he’s unselfish, and he’s a large presence in the box on crosses and corner kicks. Juan Mata is an intelligent Spaniard- the archtype of a number 8, and a player with great ball handling skills, vision, and scoring ability. Ander Herrera and Daley Blind are smooth passing defensive midfielders (Blind the more defensive of the two, Herrera more offensive). This unit thoroughly dominated the likes of Yaya Toure and Fernandinho in the Manchester Derby, and have really stepped up in the latter part of the season.

Prediction: United is on a train that can’t be stopped. I’m going Red Devil’s 3, Chelsea 1

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English Premier League, Week 4 Game of the Week

15 Sep

Recap: In what was by far the most exciting game of the season, Manchester City and Arsenal drew 2-2 at the Emirates. Jack Wilshire and Alexis Sanchez scored for the Gunners, while Kun Aguero, and Martin deMichelis (who scored the game winner) were the goal scorers for the Citizens. These 2 clubs look to be true contenders, along with Chelsea, for the Premier League title. Both Arsenal and Man City open their Champions league campaigns this week against against Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich, respectively.

This Week: 

Manchester City FC vs Chelsea FC

Manchester City FC vs Chelsea FC

Sunday, September 21st, 10pm (CST) Etihad Stadium

Why This Game is Intriguing: Because Chelsea takes their league leading perfect record: 4 wins, 0 draws, and 0 losses to the Etihad to take on Manchester City, the defending Premier League Champions. Manchester City comes off a 2-2 draw at Arsenal, and currently finds themselves in 5th place with 2 wins, 1 draw, and 1 loss. This match against Manchester City will be, by far, the best opponent Chelsea has faced up until this point- of their 4 matches played, only 1 team finished in the top 6 last season (Everton), and 2 of the opponents (Burnley and Leicester City) weren’t even in the Premier League last season. This is a tough, early regular season matchup for the Blues, and it will be interesting to see the chess match between skippers Manuel Pellegrini and Jose Mourinho.

Other Reasons to Watch this Game: There will be a lot of talent on the field considering both of these clubs are two of the richest in world football, but if there’s one player to watch, it is Diego Costa of Chelsea and formerly of Atletico Madrid. For those who follow La Liga, it’s not a total shock to see Costa perform this well this early, considering the player scored 27 league goals (in 35 appearances) for league winners Atletico. In just 4 games, Costa has a league leading 7 goals- more than twice as many as any other player in the Premier League (several have scored 3 goals). Fellow Spanish newcomer Cesc Fabregas leads the Premier League in assists with 6, and Cesc has transitioned seamlessly back to the Premier League after a spell at Barcelona . Chelsea takes this potent attack to Manchester to face one of the most formidable defenses in world football- a group that includes captain Vincent Kompany and Argentine Pablo Zabaleta.

Predictions: Manchester City 3, Chelsea 1

English Premier League, Week before Championship Sunday Game of the Week

5 May

Recap: Manchester City managed to hang onto a win at Goodison Park against Everton. Edin Dzeko provided 2 goals as City recaptured the Premier League lead, albeit on goal differential, over Liverpool. Manchester City controls their own destiny. Wins at home to Aston Villa and West Ham United will give Manchester City its second Premier League title in its history, and its second Premier League title in the last 3 years.

This Week: 

Manchester City FC vs Aston Villa FC

Manchester City FC vs Aston Villa FC

Wednesday, May 7th, 1:45pm (CDT) Etihad Stadium

Why This game is Intriguing: Because Manchester City just needs to win this game, and at home against West Ham on Championship Sunday to once again win the Premier League. Despite City’s shortcomings this season, particularly against Liverpool and Chelsea, they have managed to overcome injuries while still scoring more goals than any other club in the Premier League. A concern for Manchester City heading into this final stretch here is Sergio Aguero’s health. He picked up a knock shortly after scoring his goal against Everton, and it’s becoming a disturbing trend with him- can Aguero sustain health and strength for an entire season? Even if Aguero is forced to miss these last 2 games, City has more than enough talent, particularly against Aston Villa and West Ham, to still win the league even without their best player.

Other Reasons to Watch This Game: Aston Villa’s season has been just short of disastrous- While they surely won’t be relegated, their 10 wins, 8 draws, 18 losses and -18 goal differential is nothing for fans to be excited about, other than of course remaining in top flight. Sure, the injury bug has slammed them pretty hard too with the likes of Christian Benteke, their main goal scoring threat, out for much of the season, but Aston Villa, a storied club- should expect much better. Aston Villa actually beat Manchester City during their first encounter this season in late September at Villa Park, so perhaps they have some confidence heading into this match. Gabriel Agbonlahor is Aston Villa’s best player going forward, so keep an eye on him in this match.

Soccahaus Prediction: Manchester City 3, Aston Villa 0

Other Games This Week Worth Watching: Manchester United vs Hull City, Sunderland vs West Brom, Crystal Palace vs Liverpool

English Premier League, Week 38 Game of the Week

28 Apr

Recap: So Liverpool’s 16 match unbeaten streak comes to a halt at home to Chelsea. Liverpool now has 2 games left, at Crystal Palace, and then home to Newcastle to close out the season. Liverpool needed 7 points from their last 3 games to secure the league title, but falling to Chelsea now puts the pressure squarely on Manchester City to win out and perhaps win, for the second time in history, the Premier League title.

This Week:

Everton FC vs Manchester City FC

Everton FC vs Manchester City FC

Saturday, May 3rd, 11:30am (CDT) Goodison Park

Why this game is intriguing: The saying often goes “we are prisoners of the moment”- well in this case, yeah, i’ll buy that, because depending on the result of this game- there might even be a more important game next week- the final week of the Premier League. This game is VITAL for both Everton and Manchester City. For City, it’s simple- win out at Everton, home vs Aston Villa, then home vs West Ham- and they are champions of the 2013-14 Premier League season. Everton also needs to win, though their hopes of securing a top 4 finish and Champions League bid hinges upon Arsenal and how the Gunners perform in their last 2 games. Everton has stumbled as of late, losing 2 of their last 3.

Other Reasons to watch this game: World class players. Players who will feature prominently in the World Cup in less than 2 months will take the field in this game. For City: Joe Hart, Kun Aguero, David Silva, Yaya Toure, Vincent Kompany, Pablo Zabaleta- these guys will be counted on to not only perform well in Brazil, but will also be trusted to captain their teams to victory. For Everton- Kevin Mirallas, Romelu Lukaku, Tim Howard, Leighton Baines, and Phil Jagielka will all be key players in the World Cup. But before all of that, both sets of players have some serious work to do- and some trophies possibly to win, before they set out to join their national teams in Brazil.

Prediction: Manchester City 2, Everton 1

Other Games worth watching: West Ham vs Tottenham, Aston Villa vs Hull, Stoke vs Fulham, Arsenal vs West Brom, Chelsea vs Norwich, Crystal Palace vs Liverpool

English Premier League, Week 35 Game of the Week

7 Apr

Recap: It seems like a long, long time ago when Arsenal once led the Premier League table. Everton thrashed the Gunners at Goodison Park 3-0, with goals by Nasmith, Lukaku, and an own goal by Mikel Arteta. Arsenal now has not won a single match since the March 16th 1-0 win over North London rival Tottenham.

This Week: 

Liverpool FC vs Manchester City FC

Liverpool FC vs Manchester City FC

Sunday, April 13th, 7:30am (CDT), Anfield

Why This Game is Intriguing: The hype leading up to this match cannot be overstated- this is THE match of the entire Premier League season. The outcome of this match most likely directly affects who ends up winning the league. Liverpool is in first place with 74 points in hand, Chelsea is in 2nd place with 72 points, and Manchester City is in 3rd place with 70 points- BUT, the Citizens have 2 more games to play than Liverpool or Chelsea because of postponed games earlier in the season. Essentially, and yes there are more games to play- particularly another major one between Liverpool and Chelsea also at Anfield- But I think if Manchester City wins this game, there is a very small chance Liverpool or Chelsea can catch up and beat City for the league title.

Other Reasons to Watch this Game: Form. Manchester City has 5 wins and 2 draws in its last 7 matches, including dominating efforts against Southampton, Manchester United, and Fulham. Liverpool has won its last 9 games in a row, including blow-out wins over Tottenham, Cardiff, Manchester United, Southampton, and Arsenal. This might be considered a stretch, but I believe we’ll be watching the 2 best players in the Premier League in this match: Liverpool’s Luis Suarez, and Manchester City’s Yaya Toure. Toure leads his club with 18 league goals to go along with 5 assists. Luis Suarez has 29 goals (leads the league) to go along with 11 assists. Despite the accolades of these 2 players, both are team first guys who leave it all on the pitch in order for their teams to win.

Soccahaus Prediction: Manchester City 3, Liverpool 2

Other Games this week worth Watching: Fulham vs Norwich, Manchester United vs Hull City, Southampton vs Cardiff, Stoke City vs Newcastle, Sunderland vs Everton, Swansea vs Chelsea

English Premier League, Week 34 Game of the Week

31 Mar

Recap: I thought Arsenal would get blown out by Manchester City, but I failed to acknowledge City’s struggles on the road this season. The end result was a 1-1 draw at the Emirates- a reasonable result from the Gunners’ perspective- as just last week, they had been blown out 0-6 at Chelsea.

This Week:

Everton FC vs Arsenal FC

Everton FC vs Arsenal FC

Sunday, April 6th, 7:30am (CDT), Goodison Park

Why This Game is intriguing: Because Arsenal is just 4 points ahead of surging Everton for 4th place in the table. Everton FC dreams of playing in the UEFA Champions League next season, and in order for them to qualify, a win here at home against the Gunners would give them a very solid chance of achieving that goal. Everton has won its last 5 matches in a row, and a lot of that has to do with the return of the injured young English superstar Ross Barkley. After this match, Everton has a few very tough games remaining on the schedule including vs Manchester United, at Southampton, and then vs Manchester City. If Everton can take care its business at home, they’ll have a great chance of usurping the Gunners for 4th place in the league.

Other Reasons to Watch this Game: Everton is a club stacked with talent- talent that this offseason, you can bet Arsenal will try to pry down to North London. Arsenal will be clamoring to sign Romelu Lukaku, though his parent club Chelsea very well could want him back for next season. Lukaku is a matchup nightmare at striker, scoring 12 goals and earning 6 assists with his enormous, powerful frame. Kevin Mirallas is another player Arsenal would love to have, for his consistency in attack and particularly in front of goal is something the Gunners have lacked all season. Leighton Baines and Seamus Coleman are two stud defenders who pick their spots when it comes to involving themselves in the attack. Baines is a sure-fire starter for England in this upcoming World Cup.

Soccahaus Prediction: Everton 2, Arsenal 2

Other Games this week worth Watching: Manchester City vs Southampton, Newcastle vs Manchester United, Chelsea vs Stoke City, West Ham vs Liverpool

English Premier League, Week 33 Game of the week

26 Mar

Recap: I was convinced that after Manchester United’s win over Olympiacos in the Champions League followed by a 2-0 win at West Ham, that perhaps the Red Devils were feeling confident enough to withstand the Manchester City attack. I was wrong- and Manchester City proved once again that Manchester is blue, and that the best team in the land is led by Yaya Toure. As City manager Manuel Pelligrini said after the game, referring to Manchester United’s scoring opportunities, ” I don’t remember one single chance for United”- and that is truly how the game felt from a neutral standpoint just watching the match.

This Week:

Arsenal vs Manchester City

Arsenal FC vs Manchester City FC

Saturday, March 29th, 12:30pm (CDT), Emirates

Why This Game is Intriguing: Because these two teams are two of the top four in the Premier League, and Manchester City has a very strong chance of winning the league outright for just the second time in history. Manchester City has won its last 4 games, shutting out each opponent by a combined score of 11-0, including the 3-0 drubbing the other day at Old Trafford. Manchester City is healthy (other than Kun Aguero), sharp, dialed in, and ready to finish off its remaining 9 games in style. Arsenal on the other hand has seemingly nose-dived, earning an ugly 2-2 home draw to Swansea City, and before that, a 0-6 loss at Chelsea. Arsenal’s chances for the Premier League title this season are completely done, and the Gunners will be fighting very hard until the end just to finish 4th in the league- Everton is only 6 games back, and Arsenal must travel to Goodison Park in two weeks time to face the Toffees.

Other Reasons to Watch This Game: These teams hate each other, and while some of the tension may have eased now that Pellegrini is in for Mancini at City- Arsenal still looks down at the City bench and recognizes some faces that are all too familiar. Samir Nasri and Gael Clichy were Gunners for a number of years, 2 players who would unquestionably be starters on this years Arsenal team. Arsenal seems to have lost its edge it had in the beginning of the season- and while injuries definitely are making an impact on that lack of success- Arsenal still seems shorthanded particularly against opponents with better records.

Soccahaus Prediction: Manchester City 4, Arsenal 1

Other games this week worth Watching: Manchester United vs Aston Villa, Crystal Palace vs Chelsea, Southampton vs Newcastle, Fulham vs Everton, Liverpool vs Tottenham