Last week’s results are in and they aren’t as bad for me as I thought thanks to an exact I didn’t expect. I got an email also from BE “my week was rubbish but I think ME did ok”…. err…. you beat him?
Here are these weeks predictions as they stand right now:
This Week’s Comments
AB: “What the Smeg?”
I did a search to find out if there was some Red Dwarf activity in the league but to no avail. I did find out that it’s the name of a technology company (unfortunate choice).
JE: “Watford keep up on winning under my watch. I swear they would be fourth place in my predictions. The northerly bias continues. ” You have them only 8th… but just a measly 43 points behind Man Yoo! I have them 8th too which was surprising to me – but crazily, have West Brom mid-table! I need to adjust my WBA picks and I will do that this week…. aw crap… they play the hornets.
ME: “Watford MUST not let me down this week…. I can’t keep the faith for much longer.” You have them in 7th.. Europa League here we come!
ME: “Man Pretty v Chelski is the difficult one here…having watched Arsenal being demolished twice I can’t go against form, sorry Chelski.” Not sure what Arsenal’s form has to do with Citeh vs Chelsea but I agree anyway…
This week I did my relegation predictions here to see if the Hornets were in trouble.
Looks like goals are going to matter. Share your results if you go to the Hertfordshire newspaper and fill in the results.
That’s all I have today. This weekend I will post everyone’s table and all the head-to-heads so you can see who’s beating who. This will be interesting for most people but probably not so much for LJ and LS’s “friend” who probably have a losing record.
It was a great week for yours truly. Firstly, the Eagles pulled of an “upset” and hopefully terminated the Pats dynasty. To understand why one would dislike the Patriots you just need to read about their methods.
Then on Monday I sat down to watch the last 10 minutes of the Moose-men playing Chelsea…. I had just made myself comfortable when Hazard scored an equalizer for the 10-men blues. Crap. Luckily Chelski fetched the ball and restarted quickly so that Watford could slap in another 3 goals. 4-1.
It was a good week.
It was also a great week for BE who scored a monster total this week with FOUR exact results putting her top of the table. It would have been better if she had predicted her beloved Arsenal putting FIVE past a sub-par Everton team.
Not such a great week for LJ. I’m beginning to wonder if he even watches the English Premier League or knows what the point of guessing scores is! I think 3 points is tied for lowest total of the year.
This weeks picks were in time from EVERYONE meaning that there is no opportunity for last-minute shenanigans.
Thanks for the comments again. It does make things easier.
BE: “Gotta go with Watford…been a good week for scores so far this week, JE!!” Well a great week for BE too. JE only scored 4! I have to add a differenting C to my initials.. but yes, happy now, miserable during the game.
JE: “Totteringham will remain north London’s top club but secretly hoping for a ****” Your secret is safe with me!
ME: “Going for a record … all games wrong and no correct goal difference.”
Standard week then.
AM: “Need a good week – no dodgy stuff. Watford, behave! :-/” As a fan of the team I can tell you that’s unlikely to happen!
LS: Asked “Bonus points for early entry? Asking for a friend”
If that were the case then your friend AB would always win. He’s so confident he picks before the injury report from the prior week is released!
KMFE: Do you think Riyad Mahrez may come play for us after halftime? And Newcastle/Man U sounds incredibly turgid — inevitably, it will be the one game I get to watch without having to spend EVEN MORE MONEY on an asinine NBC application so that I don’t have to watch Newcastle/Man U…
Next year I will pay the money. It’s not that much and I’m tired of having to always watch the Watford scores scroll across the top during the Citeh game! As for Mahrez – he made it clear he wasn’t AWOL. He said Leicester knew exactly where he was when he wasn’t in Leicester! This is William Gallas level of mercenary.
This week’s Predictions
Chelsea V West Bromwich Albion
The big game this week is the North London Derby
This week I’m sure a lot of time was spent focusing on the fundamentals.
This is building on the legacy instilled at the club by the professionalism and legacy of their former German star who used to get great air.
Obviously the practice is working! This article shows what Kane used to look like diving:
Tough game to predict with both teams on the outside looking in when it comes to Champions League football. Of course Spurs could qualify by winning this year’s tournament but 3 points here will be a good step with Chelsea faltering with two consecutive poor losses.
A draw will be a fair result.
Chelsea V West Bromwich Albion WBA sitting at the bottom of the table seemed quite unlikely at the beginning of the year but here we are. I don’t see Chelski faltering again at home and they should have learnt last week to seal it at the back first. I expect a shut-out victory.
Everton V Crystal Palace Tough game to call with one of the premier leagues first-class divers unlikely to play. Big Sam will risk getting the early sack with another performance like last week so I expect a victory for the home team.
If Benteke could score it would be different.
Huddersfield Town V Bournemouth Bournemouth are on a great run over the last 7 games moving from bottom to ninth. Huddersfield have been going the other direction and have scored one goal or so in recent memory. A win for the Cherries.
Manchester City V Leicester City Probably a bit harsh showing Benteke’s miss when Sterling had miss of the season (if you erase Troy Deeney’s from your memory). No Mahrez hasn’t been too much of a problem but this time they’re playing Citeh. I don’t think Pep wants a single digit points lead so I expect a dominating performance. Leicester often seem overly reliant on Vardy getting penalties. If Kompany plays I wouldn’t be surprised to see him win one but I think he’ll be shut out.
Newcastle United V Manchester United Lukaku has been found thanks to local efforts.
Predicting an easy win for the away team just to keep JE and AM happy!
Southampton V Liverpool The Saints can be a bit of a bogey team for Liverpool. I guess it’s because they are essentially playing their former selves. Should be a good game but I’ll pick the Scousers to squeak a win.
I won’t bother predicting who will start for Liverpool as Klopp might shift everything for the CL midweek game.
Stoke City V Brighton & Hove Albion This one sounds to me like the description KMFE used earlier: turgid.
Who will score? Who will win? Who will care outside of a few Potters?
Swansea City V Burnley The Swans seem to be resurgent which is a euphemism for they won one or two and six points is the differential between the bottom and top half of the table. Burnley have been on a poor run (a draw last week notwithstanding) and I expect those fortunes to reverse.
West Ham United V Watford Deulofeu was a player I used to actually like when he was at Everton so I was pleasantly surprised when Watford picked him up. He adds some width opposite Richarlison and is creative and quick-footed in small space.
I presume he’s not as good as Messi and based on last week’s performance might be looking to move across town to Spurs.
Despite Arnautovic maybe returning I’m going to give an away edge to the team with the newer manager.
Next week I’ll pick on a different team. It was fun to bash Spurs…. I’ll expect a call from ME!
Not including the picks this week as we’re still waiting for a few entries.
This week’s big game is Liverpool and Spurs. I’m not sure why this is a such a big deal – two teams vying for a top four finish with no aspirations of winning the league. In fact, it’s been many years since either team won the league.
How long you ask?
But then as a Watford fan I should act all smart about it unless I point out the graphic for the Moosemen.
This Weeks Comments and Asides
This weekend my team, the Eagles (and I don’t mean Crystal Palace) , will face off against the Patriots in American non-round football. I’ve been looking for information to help decide who will win and decided that the Panda wins:
This is because Panda’s are clearly smarter than Porcupines but maybe not as cute (needs volume):
AB: Presented me with a link to Goalkeepers non-saving contributions https://www.footbie.com/video/top-10-goalkeeper-goals
This was timely as I had just read the story of Jimmy Glass and how his heroics impacted his life (and not really for the better, sadly)
BE: “Trying to keep the faith with Arsenal”
Every year Arsenal fans complain and every year they used to finish in the Top 4……
ME: “Deep analysis has caused me weeks of poor predictions… this week I have guessed without thought!”
This was followed by an summary and rationale for the picking of multiple games. It included picking Citeh to win and Watford to lose… don’t know about others but I wouldn’t classify those picks under “analysis”.
KMFE: “Why do we have to be the early game? I need my beauty rest ;-)…”
You could always skip the Citeh game and watch the Hornets on Monday. Both games will be one sided and an easy win for one of the teams involved!
Silly Season is Over
Finally we are done with the January transfer window (except Leicester who have to deal with an upset Mahrez). In many ways it’s sad how football teams operate these days.
I’m not picking on the Trafford team but Sanchez is a key player in the news:
“It also claims Sanchez makes almost as much during one half of football than the annual salary of some cleaning, catering and security staff who work at Old Trafford (£14,625), that it would take someone on the minimum wage 41 years to earn the £600,000 the Chilean takes home each week, and that his agent’s reported £15 million fee would be enough to fund Living Wage pay rises of almost £2,500 for 6,100 low-paid workers.”
Sanchez to United for Mkhitaryan to Arsenal; Giroud to Chelsea for Luiz to Arsenal(?); Every decent Southampton player to Liverpool; foreign players hand-picked by ownership to Watford; everyone who’s good to Madrid. Who can keep track of all the deckchairs being re-shuffled?
Here are the picks:
AM: “Thank god Christmas and NY is over and done with. All over the place! GGMU. :-)” What about the January re-shuffle? I can’t keep track of who is where and who was where. All I know is that Mourinho signed an extended contract and Alexis Sanchez can now be miserable on 300.000 GBP up North (and Pogba will cry if he doesn’t get a raise). I can only imagine that the manager formerly known as the “great one” and now regarded as the “grating one” will now complain that he has too many options and too many players to keep happy ….
ME: “Injuries created by poor sides could upset Man Pretty but Baggies are full of flu and this should help Pep’s team to another comfortable win..” That’s an over-complication of Man City playing West Brom.
ME: “Watford heading in the wrong direction and FA Cup will deflate them further! Lucky for Stoke.”
Watford are close to relegation now. We just got Deulefeu from Barca and I liked him at Everton so I’m hoping a little width on one side will free up Richarlison on the other … but I feel Richarlison is looking outside the club already. I just hope he’s not going to turn into a Sanchez in the locker room.
JE:”That hammers v eagles looks like a shit game. Bring on the real eagles game eh Johnny boy!! ”
Looked into tickets for the Superbowl but decided that $5000 a piece was probably a little steep. Think I might put it towards a Euro 2020 trip or maybe towards some tennis grand-slam events.
No further analysis this week because it’s a school night and I’ve already spent over and hour doing all this stuff! It’s much easier to comment on people though than to have to make up stuff.
Maybe for the next round you can point out that I still haven’t announced the mid-season winner!
Looks like everyone was on time despite my late reminder – except LS.
I made some quick guesses picks this week because I didn’t have time to do my normal lengthy analysis.
Arsenal V Crystal Palace
Arsene is finally allowed on the touchline after his three match ban for telling the referee that his terrible decision was terrible. Woy’s Boys are moving up the table and are one win away from being in the top half. It’s awmost wike Woy wants Palace to pway like Asenal. He was recently spotted doing an impression of his French opposition.
Jack Wilshire playing forward will lead the scoring with Iwobi following up. Xhaka will play like a statue and watch Zaha trap the ball, look up, think about it, take a step and side-foot in from 18 yards before pointing at another defender to blame them for being out of position. Welbeck gets a late winner.
Brighton & Hove Albion V Chelsea
Chelsea aren’t really firing on all cylinders with Morata really struggling:
It reminds of the time they had that other European superstar:
Alonso will step and score from a free-kick late on. Time to make him a forward.
Burnley V Manchester United
At Old Toilet Burnley gave Man You a run for their money but they relied on a fantastic free kick and that won’t happen again. Pogba is back, Martial is playing forward, Lingard is in and they aren’t relying on Rashford. Sounds like shutout.
Lingard and Lukaku net one each though Romelu will take 10 attempts to get his on target.
Everton V West Bromwich Albion
West Brom are bottom of the table and away. Normally this wood be an easy to predict loss but nothing is a given any more and I expect this to be a tight affair.
Johnny Evans will put the Baggies in front before Rooney equalizes.
Leicester City V Watford
Watford are a good team with an outstanding manager. Or so they said. Watford are an ok team with an ok manager but are currently doing less than ok. I expect Andre Gray to net another one of his consolation goals after Riyad “He’s Still In Leicester?” Mahrez puts the home team up two.
Manchester City V Newcastle United
Citeh lost and so now Newcastle will try the press. One long ball one Aguero later… they fall behind.
Southampton V Tottenham Hotspur
The saints will lose to a resurgent Spurs. Kane, Alli, and Erikson will all score leaving millions of fantasy players that captained Kane frustrated.
Stoke City V Huddersfield Town
Swansea City V Liverpool
There will always be goals against Liverpool but I think by now we should get the point that Salah and Firmino will always have chances to score…. and even the Ox can get involved. Ayew is the only player Swansea has so he will put one past Loris Karius. I’m sure they wish Loris was LLoris over in Mersey land. West Ham United V Bournemouth Don’t see West Ham losing at the cavern that is their home.
JE: “Has Sanchez signed for united for the weekly wage of the earth yet? Not checked the news!” No he hasn’t but it’s money that Man U has earned through the money they generate from their fans in London.
AM: “I have predicted a WATFORD defeat and if that proves correct I’ll leave it there, BUT, if they even get a point I will be lodging an official complaint! :-/” So will everyone else?
ME: “Man Pretty is my banker this week as losing last time out was a good kick up the backside. They will want to show it was just a blip. Can’t say I’d like to be in Newcastle kit this week.”
There are eleven players in Manchester who will be at the Middle Eastlands stadium thinking the same thing!
BE: “I have lost faith in Arsenal as a top team, but I think that they can still beat Crystal Palace, if not, I will be shattered. Looks like there should be 3 or 4 definite away wins, but there have been a few upsets recently.” In other words – the top four should win… and Arsenal aren’t in the Top 4. Not too much argument in general except ME went for a draw at Turf Moor. That will be upsetting to a few people if that comes true!
AB: That’s staying power http://www.bbc.com/sport/football/42645881 Trivia question for answering in comments. Who was the oldest player to play for England? Who was the youngest? And what was the age gap as the tie-breaker. NO cheating!
So we’re in the middle of the transfer season and things are a little silly. I’m not going to comment on that aspect of the game though because I don’t understand how a model 2018 Coutinho is worth 19 times an early model Bergkamp.
The results from round 21 are in finally after the Spuds played their late game against the Hammers. It was a tough week with many games ending in a 0-0 result which meant in a low scoring week. It took a lot of expertise to come out looking good this week – so congratulations to JCE for topping the table with the lowest winning score of the season to date.
The results from round 22 are also in.
Congratulations to LS for starting his second-half turn-around…… presuming he picks in time for week 23!
AB: “Keepers can, at times, grant us so much”
AM: “Happy New Year ONE and ALL. GGMU!”
Nothing to add here
ME: “Coutinho having gone may increase Liverpool ‘s chances statistically, but I can’t bet against Man Pretty …good sell…probably, but time will tell.”
i think the sale is good but it will lead to bad buys due to the influx of cash – selling Torres was great business. Offsetting that with a huge fee for a carthorse name Carroll was the opposite. The price of Naby Keita just went up at the same time his form has allegedly been dipping.
“Worried about Man Utd facing the sacked manager team but believe they will overcome Stoke.”
if they don’t there should be a new sacked manager.
“Relegation candidates will probably share spoils, I have to hope that is true otherwise it will be another failed week for me.”
Probably a decent call. Lots of draws selected so you won’t be alone.
“Arsenal v Chelski was a very good game and their abilities should see them through, especially as they really need the points.”
Ramsey is back and he’s a big difference maker for that team. He’s not necessarily noticed but their record with and without him makes him a standout.
One Line Analysis
Bournemouth V Arsenal Arsenal are better than Bournemouth who are pretty close to the bottom of the table.
Chelsea V Leicester City The blue team will win.
Crystal Palace V Burnley Neither team is great but Burnley haven’t won in a while.
Huddersfield Town V West Ham United Lowest scoring team plays rubbish team at home which might not be the most fascinating fixture of the week.
Liverpool V Manchester City Could be lots of goals and could be Citeh’s first loss but it might not be either.
Manchester United V Stoke City
One team is bigger,better,and richer than the other team and they should win or lose their manager.
Newcastle United V Swansea City
Newcastle can’t buy players because they have no money and Swansea can’t buy players because they’re in Wales. (or maybe because they aren’t good) so neither team is filled with talent.
Tottenham Hotspur V Everton
Potato Chickens will beat the men of Toffee
Watford V Southampton
Two struggling teams with rubbish defenses and attackers but one just sold their best player and the other is getting people back from suspension and injury.
West Bromwich Albion V Brighton & Hove Albion
Finally the new manager bounce happened but it was just a small boing for the boing boings.
Round 21 is not yet complete with the Spurs vs West Ham game having been re-scheduled so the following round is “pending finalization”. There are still between 0-4 points available which is more than enough given that we were all rather useless at predicting the following:
The Referee giving a penalty for a defender defending n the penalty area
Watford missing a sitter and giving up two goals in the last 5 minutes
Chelsea scoring FIVE goals
A large number of 0-0 scores
Man City goalless at Crystal Palace
Here were the weeks guesses – I’ve hidden the final result still so come so that no-one can cheat*
Usually, I advise myself to go with the gut and stick to it. The extra two days this week gave me an opportunity to re-evaluate my picks… and I changed two of my picks at the last minute – one to a draw, one to a 0-0 draw. This yielded six of my eight points (and puts me in the lead). I can thank writing up scores for this because my brain kept remembering me writing “If any game has 0-0 written all over it it’s this one” for a game I picked 1-0 and ended 0-0.
I decided to go with my gut this time and not my brain. I also think I changed Man United from a draw to a win so there’s that.
So my advice to all of you: Stick with your gut unless your gut is wrong!
Because you don’t know how to cheat, I’ll explain. IF AM knew what ME had picked for Spuds vs West Ham he could improve the odds of him winning the week by choosing the same score and assuming that ME did not change his pick. This would effectively guarantee keeping him ahead of ME.
That’s if he was a lousy cheat,of course. A good one would pick a different result knowing that ME only has 4 points and is blinded by his love for potato chickens!
Don’t forget to pick the next games if you haven’t. Repick if you want. I’ve got a single form for the fixture above.
Another quick post! I am compiling the half-year stats as we speak and I will be announcing the winner very soon! This weeks winner was always going to be heavily luck based given results that were never going to be predicted. I don’t think anyone has ever guessed 5-2 before!
Alternatively, with the results being what they were, only the most skilled and knowledgeable prediction analyst had any hope of winning really.
This weeks Comments (and a Couple from last week)
AM: “I wish Watford would make their minds up!”
I know, it’s all a little too Eurovision 1981 for me
“. . .and United shape up. All costing me precious points here!” And DDG is not helping my Fantasy team anymore! Lukaku isn’t helping anyone’s! Time for a new manager…. and the next sad realisation that Sir Alex is still retired and a little to the East is a better team.
“ME will be up to his eyes in sherry so he’ll not be much use over the festive period!” I think he’ll take second this week!
ME: “Just doing this before travelling south.. not a lot of time so no detailed analysis this week! Fast guesswork to the fore!!”
Oh, that explains it.
JE:” Must find time to do a write up for you. “
Just like your United team… so much promise and just don’t deliver !
KMFE: “Mark Hughes next casualty of the season” That man has a reputation built on one moment and it turns out it from his comments it wasn’t that great
I’ll take Pochettino for different reasons!
I’m going to have a guess here because I’m not sure if you mean now or historically – someone from your team or that team across Stanley park?
LS: “Merry Xmas guys x” Thanks! And appreciate the continued picking from you and the few that care. If it’s not obvious, I’ll make it so – it’s really appreciated that you all get picks in on time and play along.
Upcoming Games I won’t be doing a detailed write-up tomorrow as I will be watching a small puck game…