With both of the North London clubs currently on top of the Premier League the focus will be on them as they face very different challenges this weekend – William
Arsenal lead on goal difference from neighbours Tottenham Hotspur, and will travel to an inform Swansea who will still be on a high following their 3-0 demolition of Valencia last Thursday. Arsene Wenger has overseen eight straight wins in all competitions after their opening day nightmare against Aston Villa, and star performers Olivier Giroud, Aaron Ramsey and Mezut Oil have been at the heart of some excellent football. Fans can expect a good game here with plenty of passing football on offer, with Arsenal edging out the home side.
In London meanwhile Spurs welcome Jose Mourinho and Chelsea who themselves have been in spluttering form recently. Last week’s win at Fulham came courtesy of second half goals but those at Stamford Bridge voiced their concerns as boos rang out with score 0-0 at half time. In contrast their local opponents have lost just one game so far this season, conceding just one goal. Andre Villas Boas has put together a team drawing whispers of a potential title challenge, but their credentials will again be put to the test against one of the top four after they lost to Arsenal previously. This is always a tense encounter and home advantage may be enough to edge Tottenahm past Chelsea, with a draw not too unlikely either.
Focussing elsewhere, many will be interested to see how David Moyes can pick Manchester united up from their derby humiliation last week. They started in positive fashion by beating Liverpool in the Capital One cup midweek, but there will be those who are very worried for the Red Devils title challenge already. They face West Brom, who finally picked up their first league win last week. Stephane Sessegnon already looks like a shrewd signing for the Baggies but going to Old Trafford is always difficult no matter the form of the home side, and they should overcome West Brom on Saturday.
Liverpool were the early pace setters before they suffered defeat at the hands of Southampton. They travel to Sunderland who find themselves in a turbulent time following the sacking of Paolo Di Canio. Rodgers will be hoping to take advantage of the uncertainty surrounding the Stadium of Light and get back to winning ways, and an away win can be expected. The anticipated league return of Luis Suarez should carry Liverpool to victory.
Predictions with William Hill:
Tottenham vs Chelsea
The Special One vs the apprentice will promise a tense tactical battle. Both teams have vast amounts of talent and expect a tight game: 2-1
Aston Villa vs Man City
City will want to build momentum to make up for a slack start, but come up against a Villa side who returned to winning ways last week and have played some good football: 0-2
Fulham vs Cardiff
Fulham finally found another win midweek after going without one since the opening day, while Cardiff have suffered back to back defeats, making this a potentially important game for both sides: 2-1
Hull City vs West Ham
Hull have been impressive and can extend an unbeaten run to four games this week. Their opponents have been goal shy, and only scored league goals on the opening day of the season and last week – a worrying stat: 1-0
Manchester United vs West Brom
United will want to put back to back wins together following the Manchester derby last weekend, and while West Brom won last weekend it will be a big ask to take points from Old Trafford: 3-0
Southampton vs Crystal Palace
The Saints won impressively at Anfield last week, and should overcome struggling Crystal Palace at home: 3-0
Swansea vs Arsenal
Two teams who will play good football, but Arsenal’s impressive form shows no signs of slowing down and they should beat the Welsh side: 1-3
Stoke vs Norwich
Stoke always make the Britannia a hard place to go, especially for a Norwich side who are not putting their chances away in recent games: 0-0
Sunderland vs Liverpool
Liverpool will look to take advantage of the turbulence surrounding Sunderland and with the league return of Luis suarez they should beat the troubled Black Cats: 0-2
Everton vs Newcastle
Everton suffered their first defeat of the season midweek but remain unbeaten in the league. Newcastle’s return to form was swiftly ended by a plucky Hull side last week, and they will find it tough at Goodison Park: 2-1