Premier League Midweek Matches Fixtures & Previews
Ole Solskjaer’s smile has well and truly left his face, and it has been replaced with a deep frown that resembles a look that Jose Mourinho had during his tenure. Whatever is going on at Old Trafford is good news for everyone else, and a real embarrassment for the club. The news doesn’t get any better for Arsenal either, as hopes of a third place in the table have completely gone now after a futile effort against Crystal Palace, which will have undoubtedly lifted the spirits of Chelsea and Tottenham.
Watford v Southampton – 23rd April Kick Off @ 1945hrs
It’s a real shame that Troy Deeney can’t keep his elbows to himself, and consequently, he missed the win against Huddersfield as a result of his stupidity. As it turned out, they didn’t need him. Deulofeu came to the rescue and put two nicely taken goals past the Terriers. The Hornets must be thinking about the FA Cup final that is just around the corner. Javi Garcia’s problem is that he continually says there is more to be done at the club, which just sounds like a get out clause. Just get on with it.
The wheels fell off Ralph Hassenhuttl’s bus against Newcastle as he was outwitted by Bernitez and his tactical wizardry. After the game, Ralph said he wants to see faster and more aggressive football. He went on to say, “we must turn up from the beginning with more aggression”. Wow, no wonder Southampton appointed him as manager with such a creative vision. How about a proper formation and a game plan before you arrive at the game? That might help things along a bit.
Spurs v Brighton – Tues 23rd April Kick Off @ 1945hrs
It’s all ups and downs at Tottenham at the moment, and although Son did well against City on Saturday, they really needed Harry Kane’s tenacity up front. They had some really great opportunities to win but failed to take them, which has sort of defined the season for Spurs. Mauricio Pochettino’s joy was evident after VAR handed him a golden ticket to the Champions League semi final. However, it isn’t the final, and it’s definitely not a guarantee of silverware. So much is at stake at Tottenham now that they have a proper stadium to pay for.
All hope is lost at Brighton, and the responsibility lies squarely at the feet of Chris Houghton. Celebrating a draw at Wolves isn’t the sort of inspiring leadership that will motivate his rather melancholy team. The real mystery is why Brighton have become so hollow without the faintest sign of a fight in them. Something has slain the heart of the players, and sadly, it signals the end of an amazing run in the Premier League.
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Man Utd v Man City – Wed 24th April Kick off @ 2000hrs
In 1979, Kenny Loggins released a song called ‘this is It’. Well, this is it, all bar the shouting; Man City for all intents and purposes can take the Premiership title. Standing in their way is the once mighty Manchester United, but they’re not mighty any more. Their saviour Ole has lost his mojo – if he ever had it in the first place – and doesn’t have the managerial prowess needed to dominate the boobs he has for players. A humiliating defeat at the hands of Everton has destroyed any kudos Solskjear had, and now it’s absolutely clear who is running that club.
The smartest manager in the universe knows that City are almost over the line, and to defeat Man United at home will be his crowning moment. However, if City think for one minute the title is in the bag, they will come unstuck. Man United are hurting, and without Kevin de Bruyne to orchestrate proceedings for City, Pep should be a little concerned. City need to drive a stake through United’s heart at the beginning of the game because if they don’t, it’s goodbye to glory and hello to second place.
Wolves v Arsenal – Wed 24th April Kick off @ 1945hrs
It was a bit of a disappointment to see the man with the nicest name in football let his side down by stomping out of the pressroom. Wolves are starting to unravel and simply ignoring the truth won’t help, not to mention being childish enough to walk out of a news conference because you don’t have an answer to a perfectly reasonable question. If Nuno isn’t careful, it will be six without a win at home. Let’s see how he reacts to that. Throwing a tantrum because you don’t get your own way has become an unacceptable norm in football – just ask Paul Pogba.
Unai Emery acknowledges the frustration he and the players felt at home against Crystal Palace, which is a simple way of disguising that you weren’t ready for the game. Invariably, Arsenal lost to a better prepared and more coherent team that demonstrated they knew what the plan was. If there is a lesson to be learned, it should be to let the players know what is expected of them because it looked like they didn’t have a clue. Fourth or even third spot was a real possibility for the Gunners three games ago, but not now.
All of the fixtures – Kick off at 2000hrs unless stated otherwise
Tuesday 23rd April
- Spurs v Brighton – Kick off at 1945hrs
- Watford v Southampton – Kick off at 1945hrs
Wednesday 24th April
- Wolves v Arsenal – Kick off at 1945hrs
- Man United v Man City
Friday 26th April
- Liverpool v Huddersfield
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