PREDICTION: Man City, Liverpool and Arsenal will ALL drop points this weekend.
Right now as it stands, the Premier League looks good for Chelsea. Despite the other sides having...
Right now as it stands, the Premier League looks good for Chelsea. Despite the other sides having games in hand on us to claw back some points, things are looking positive. By Monday we will know if things have got even better!
A potential slip up, a massive North London derby and Liverpool taking on traditionally, their biggest rivals, one way or another, Chelsea could gain an even bigger advantage as long as we get the right result ourselves at Villa Park.
Everybody talks about games in hand and different scenario's and that's understandable but it could be games such as this weekend, where each of us plays that important points could be dropped. If that happens, then games in hand do not make a difference.
I will be posting up match preview tomorrow and will look at the game in more detail but for now, we have to focus on the points available this weekend to our rivals.
Hull v Man City Sat 12:45 - Verdict - "Banana Skin" and Draw.
A potential banana skin? Maybe so, maybe not but there are important things to consider. Sergio Aguero looks doubtful but with Dzeko and Negredo City are still strong, Martin Demichelis looks like being brought back into the side at the back and we have all seen in recent weeks that he is useless!
There is the travel to consider for Pellegrini's side. You would imagine they have either returned back late during the early hours of this morning from the Nou Camp or at some stage today so they only really have a day to wind down. It takes it's toll especially after they have suffered disappointment in being knocked out of TWO cup competitions in the last four days.
Kick off at 12:45 Saturday afternoon for City? Would they have recovered in enough time? Would they be able to pick themselves up for the game?
Hull are no pushovers and with the combined threat of Shane Long and Jelavic up top, this could be a real difficult afternoon for the visitors.
You would imagine Steve Bruce and his side would see the game as a real chance to try and take something from City. With everything considered I could see City dropping points here. Let's hope the minimum we get from this is two points dropped and a draw in the lunchtime kickoff.
Man United v Liverpool Sun 13:30 - Verdict - Score Draw.
Liverpool heading to Old Trafford is always a big, big game and with what has happened this season so far, you would consider the away team to be the favourites.
Scoring goals for fun and picking up important points, Brendan Rodgers side have surprised everyone with their league position at the moment. They deserve to be there and credit to them.
However, Old Trafford and United could be a different story.
I understand and am well aware of the attacking threat Liverpool have but I still believe they are suspect at the back. RVP, Rooney and Juan Mata will cause them problems during the game and it will come down to whether or not United can keep them at bay.
The game will have intensity, the game will be a battle and you can bet your life after three points last week that United will be well up for this one.
If Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge are given enough time and space to play, United could be on for a pasting at home but I think this will turn into a tight tense affair.
For some reason and maybe it's because I am a Chelsea fan, I can see United getting something out of the game. I cannot see them keeping a clean sheet but in saying that, I cannot see Liverpool doing the same either so I am going for a score draw.
Tottenham v Arsenal Sun 16:00 - Verdict - Home Win.
We all saw Tim Sherwood's press conference after the game at the Bridge on Sunday. By all accounts, he told each of the players exactly the same. Reports have stated since then, the players have had a two hour debate to sort things out and clear the air. What better way to put things right than to beat Arsenal at home!
Make no mistake, Spurs will be right up for this one and will be looking to put in a performance that indicates to the manager and the club that they want to fight for their futures and be a part of the club going forward.
It's easy to forget that Spurs were right in the game against us until the penalty and sending off. Under Sherwood, expect them to come out and attack Arsenal.
So what of Arsenal? Beaten in the Champions League and with a growing injury list, you have to wonder how they will approach Tottenham.
In their favour would be the additional two days recovery period with Spurs playing tonight but I personally think this game is closer than people think.
Ozil despite not playing well of late, is still a big, big miss. Jack Wilshere being out along with Aaron Ramsey has given Wenger a headache in a game he simply cannot afford to lose.
I just think that Arsenal have to match Tottenham in every single department on Sunday to get a result. If they can do that remains to be seen but I can see this one being another tight and tense affair.
Could Adebayor prove to be the difference? My prediction is that Tottenham will want it more and win the game.
It's important to remember that City, Liverpool and Arsenal are ALL strong and will more than likely all start as favourites to win their respective games with the bookies. It could the case that just one or maybe two of them could drop points and not all three.
My argument is that you cannot just take these games for granted because of the situation that surrounds them as explained in each of the games above. There are important factors to consider that could affect the outcome of each game.
I cannot emphasise enough just how important this set of fixtures could be come Sunday night when we look at the Premier League table.
Chelsea sit seven points clear of Arsenal and Liverpool and talking as if Chelsea were to win at Villa Park, taking on board my predictions, they could find themselves NINE points behind with just a single game in hand.
Manchester City sit nine points behind but again, with my prediction for Hull on Saturday lunchtime, they could find themselves ELEVEN points behind with three games in hand.
All Jose Mourinho and the Chelsea players need to do is focus on one game at a time and to make sure we get those games won. I would rather have the points on the board than the games in hand because games in hand are only important if you win them and keep up with the pace in your remaining games.
It's a time for calm heads, for focus and making sure we get games won now and I honestly believe they will ALL stumble and drop points handing even more of an advantage to Mourinho who has been there, seen it and done it before!
Of course I could be totally wrong here and ALL of them could win their own games to keep the pressure on us. The thing is though, with everything considered, THIS is the weekend that will give them all a real test of their characters especially with the likes of Man United and Tottenham having something to prove.
Do you think I am right and ALL of our rivals could possibly drop points this weekend?