Five games to watch this weekend: Chelsea v Tottenham, plus Napoli look to pay their respects
We take a look at this weekend’s biggest fixtures
Jose Mourinho has plenty of long-term managerial rivals, but few of those contests are quite so compelling as his on-going tactical battle with Chelsea manager Frank Lampard.
His former captain has bested him on two of the three occasions their teams have met and both sides go into Sunday’s game in excellent form.
Elsewhere, Southampton face Man Utd, who always seem a result or two away from existential crisis, while Napoli face Roma in Serie A, as the city mourns the passing of Diego Maradona.
Chelsea v Tottenham – Sunday (16:30)
Despite a penalty win for Spurs in the Carabao Cup in September, Chelsea edged this rivalry since Frank Lampard’s arrival, winning both Premier League games against his former manager. Mourinho has never lost three consecutive league games against the same manager or club before, and he’ll desperate to put his former charge in his place.
Both teams have been flying in recent weeks, with Chelsea winning their last three league games, while only conceding two goals in their last eight games in all competitions. Meanwhile, Spurs are on a four-game winning streak in the league. Mourinho’s men are expected to play on the counter once more, yet that apparent predictability amounts to little with such strong attacking options at their disposal.
We make Chelsea 11/10 favourites to win here, with the draw at 13/5 and a Tottenham win at 5/2.
Chelsea could welcome Christian Pulisic back to the team, While Toby Alderweireld will miss out for Spurs.
Tammy Abraham has scored in Chelsea’s last two league games and will be looking to make it three. He’s 9/2 to score first and 17/10 to net anytime, with top-scorer Timo Werner at 6/4 to find the net.
Harry Kane is 4/1 to open the scoring for Spurs, or 6/4 anytime. Both Son Heung-min and Carlos Vinicius are 21/10 to score anytime.
Southampton v Manchester United – Sunday (14:00)
This looks like a tricky fixture for both sides. While Man Utd were excellent in Europe in midweek, they’ve blown hot and cold in the league, and were fortunate to beat West Brom 1-0 last weekend.
On the other hand, they’ve won seven away games in a row in the league, including all three games this season. A win here would make it a club-record eight away league wins in a row.
Southampton are unbeaten in seven after an outstanding performance from keeper Alex McCarthy helped them to a 1-1 draw away to Wolves last time. They currently occupy fifth place in the table.
Southampton are 14/5 to claim all three points here, with 13/5 about the draw, Man Utd are Evens to win.
Southampton remain without Danny Ings, along with Nathan Redmond who has a hamstring injury. Man Utd are waiting to see the results of fitness tests for Victor Lindelhof, Paul Pogba, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Luke Shaw.
Southampton striker Che Adams has scored three in his last five, and is 23/10 to add to his tally anytime here. For Man Utd, Bruno Fernandes is 4/1 to open the scoring, or 6/4 to score anytime, with Edinson Cavani at 13/8 to score his second goal for the club.
Arsenal v Wolves – Sunday (19:15)
While there have been positive signs for Arsenal under Mikel Arteta’s leadership, recent results and performances mean questions are starting to be asked of the Spaniard. Despite having one of the league’s most potent attacking tools in Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, they’re struggling to score goals.
In fact, in Wolves they face a team with the exact same goal difference – both have scored nine, conceded 10 so far this season, with Wolves ahead of Arsenal in the league by just one point. The stats suggest a low-scoring draw could be on the cards here and a 1-1 correct score can be backed at 5/1.
Arsenal are 23/20 to claim the win, with a draw at 11/5 and a Wolves win at 14/5.
Nicolas Pepe is suspended following his sending off against Leeds, though Thomas Partey could return. Willian and Bukayo Saka are both doubts.
Conor Coady could return to the Wolves back-line, although Romain Saiss will again miss out, following a positive Covid-19 test.
The aforementioned Aubameyang remains Arsenal’s biggest threat and is 10/3 to score first, or 7/5 anytime. Wolves are similarly reliant on Diego Jota who is 4/1 to open the scoring, or 9/5 to find the net in 90 minutes.
Everton v Leeds United – Saturday (17:30)
Everton ended a string of three consecutive defeats with a 3-2 win over Fulham last weekend, benefitting from another missed penalty from the Cottagers. The Merseyside team’s excellent early-season form leaves them seventh in the table.
Leeds were unable to capitalise on Nicolas Pepe’s sending off as they drew 0-0 with Arsenal last time out, but you’d expect a typically energetic display from Marcelo Bielsa’s side here.
Both teams have defensive weaknesses – Everton have conceded 16 goals so far this season, to Leeds’ 17. With in-form strikers for both sides, this could end up a high-scoring game and we have over 3.5 goals at 29/10.
Everton are the favourites here at Evens to win, with the draw at 11/4 and a Leeds win at 13/5.
Leeds are without Jamie Shackleton and Pablo Hernandez, while £18m centre-back Diego Llorente is still missing with a groin injury and will have to wait a while longer to make his debut.
Everton will be without left-back Lucas Digne, in a big blow to the club – he may require surgery after suffering an ankle ligament injury in training. Captain Seamus Coleman also remains on the sidelines.
The on-fire Dominic Calvert-Lewin plundered two goals against Fulham and is 16/5 to score first here, and 21/20 to score anytime.
For Leeds, Patrick Bamford could find himself heavily marked, but his stellar play in the box has seen him score seven goals from nine so far this season. He’s 6/4 to be back among the goals here.
Napoli v Roma – Saturday (20:45)
The greatest player of all time? Perhaps. The greatest Napoli player ever? Without a doubt. The city of Naples is in mourning after Diego Maradona passed away this week. The Argentine maestro led the team to two Scudettos, a Coppa Italia and a UEFA Cup win during his time at the club – transforming them from unfashionable, to at times unstoppable.
They’ve already seen one Europa League win since the sad announcement, but we’d expect another emotionally-charged evening in Naples on Saturday.
Putting aside the sad circumstances under which this game is set to be played, sixth-placed Napoli will be looking to put their patchy form behind them, after two defeats in their last three games. They face a Roma team who have climbed to third in Serie A with three consecutive wins.
Napoli are the 23/20 favourites to win here, with 13/5 about the draw and a Roma win at 21/10.
The visiting side are plagued by injuries to their backline with Chris Smalling, Gianluca Mancini, Roger Ibanez, Marash Kumbulla and Federico Fazio all doubtful.
Napoli will be without Amir Rrahmani, Elseid Hysaj and Victor Osimhen, while on-loan Chelsea man Tiemoue Bakayoko is suspended.
Up top, Napoli’s triple-threat attack of Dries Mertens, Hirving Lozano and Victor Osimhen are all 9/2 to score first, or 13/8 to score anytime.
For Roma, Edin Dzeko remains the main man at 34, with four goals so far this season. He’s 7/4 to add to that tally on Saturday evening.
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All odds and markets correct as of date of publication