The FA Cup quarterfinals will be a huge talking point this weekend, but there are a handful of interesting Premier League games to look forward to. As for the Premier League midweek's action, what Brighton & Hove Albion are doing is quite unbelievable.
I expected them to beat Crystal Palace, but their position in the league table is just incredible. Roberto de Zerbi's side are just six points behind fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur and also have two games in hand - so the coming weeks could be really interesting for them.
Brentford will be kicking themselves for losing to Everton, while the Toffees will breathe a huge sigh of relief after getting three valuable points.
On that note, here are my predictions for the seven Premier League GW28 fixtures.
Nottingham Forest vs Newcastle United
This is a must-win game for both teams and I say that for two reasons. Forest are awful away from home, so they need to make their home games count to preserve their Premier League status. The City Ground is not an easy place to go to and get a win, so this won't be straightforward for Newcastle.
Eddie Howe's side, on the other hand, have two games in hand over Tottenham. They are already in the running to secure a place in the top four, but with two wins, they can really put themselves in the thick of the action. The aim of Newcastle's project is to win stuff and while they've had a good start, I think they should go out this summer and sign a handful of top-quality players. Liverpool and Chelsea have had nightmare seasons this time around, but that's unlikely to happen in the 2023-24 campaign, so the Magpies need to recruit bigger and better players to compete for major honors.
The Eden Hazard's and the Neymar's won't really help move their project along - they are at that stage of their careers where they're not going to help you win anything.
I think this game is hard to call, so I'm going for a 1-1 draw.
Prediction: Nottingham Forest 1-1 Newcastle United
Brentford vs Leicester City
If Brentford win this game, they'll get to 44 points, which is an unbelievable tally for a club of their stature. As for Leicester, I'm starting to worry about them. With James Maddison returning to the team, I think they'll fix up in the coming weeks, but they need to do it soon before things start catching up with them. Big players have left Leicester City over the years and I expect the trend to continue this summer, with Youri Tielemans and Maddison linked with potential transfers.
Maddison is is a top-quality player who I'm a huge fan of - I think he'd be a fantastic signing for Newcastle. He'd be a much better signing for them than the likes of Neymar and Hazard if you think about their long-term project over four or five seasons.
Brentford will have to wait and see what happens with Ivan Toney's ban, as he's a fantastic player who could play for any of the big boys in the future. This will be an entertaining game and I think Brentford will win quite comfortably.
Prediction: Brentford 3-1 Leicester City
Southampton vs Tottenham Hotspur
Southampton have to start winning games and getting three points against Tottenham would do them a world of good. They got a deserved draw against Manchester United and even managed to beat Leicester City, but they went and lost 2-0 to Brentford at home to bring them back to square one.
I fancy Tottenham to win this one, with Harry Kane emerging as the difference-maker on the night. Spurs have a fantastic chance of securing a top-four finish and I feel Brighton and Newcastle will be their biggest challengers as Liverpool and Chelsea simply haven't been good enough this season.
Prediction: Southampton 0-2 Tottenham Hotspur
Aston Villa vs Bournemouth
I like Aston Villa under Unai Emery - he's really turned things around and got his side scoring freely. Speaking of Bournemouth - what a result it was against Liverpool, more so after the Reds demolished Manchester United 7-0 a week prior to that game! The Cherries have arguably the kindest set of fixtures between now and the end of the season, so I fancy them to string together a run of positive results to escape relegation.
I see a lot of goals at Villa Park and I fancy the home side to win by the odd goal in five.
Prediction: Aston Villa 3-2 Bournemouth
Wolverhampton vs Leeds United
I just can't see Wolves going down - they are a decent team under an experienced manager and I think they should win this game.
If you look at Leeds - they have Wolves and Arsenal away after which they face Nottingham Forest and Crystal Palace at home. Those two games will define their season - if they get two wins, they will survive, else it's curtains for them.
Prediction: Wolves 2-0 Leeds United
Chelsea vs Everton
Everton got a fantastic win against Brentford but they have a bunch of hard games coming up, so they really needed to get three points against the Bees. Chelsea, on the other hand, are finally showing signs of clicking under Graham Potter after the Englishman decided to revert to a three-at-the-back formation.
Some of the football they played against Leicester was unreal. In the second half, they sliced through the Foxes like butter and carved them open, with Mateo Kovacic and Enzo Fernandez pulling the strings in the center of the park. I said it before and I'll say it again - these guys are massive dangers in the UEFA Champions League as there's just too much depth and quality in that squad despite how their league campaign has turned out so far.
Raheem Sterling no longer makes Chelsea's best team anymore, as Mykhailo Mudryk, Joao Felix and Kai Havertz led the line to devastating effect against Leicester. Sterling did get the winner against Borussia Dortmund, but Potter is finally showing signs of finding his best XI and if Chelsea continue to win games, will he change his team? For now, if I were him, I wouldn't change anything.
Prediction: Chelsea 3-0 Everton
Arsenal vs Crystal Palace
I'm going for an Arsenal win all day long - pick a scoreline! I've always said this and I firmly believe it matters who plays first in terms of the title race. Manchester City are in the FA Cup, so if Arsenal manage to win this week, they can go eight points clear at the top of the Premier League table.
City will have games in hand, but Arsenal need to do whatever they can to put pressure on Pep Guardiola's side as we enter the business end of the season. People keep saying Arsenal have hard games between now and the end of the season, but I look at Manchester City's run-in and it doesn't look a whole lot easier.
Crystal Palace, on the other hand, are already in a relegation battle, but the good thing for them is that there's too much traffic between them and the bottom three. Patrick Vieira's side have a good set of fixtures coming up after Arsenal - every team they are set to face over the next six games is currently below them in the standings, so their clash against the Gunners becomes a bit of a free hit.
As for Arsenal's standout performer this season, it's between Bukayo Saka and Martin Odegaard, for me. The Arsenal captain has led from the front and produced the goods consistently, while Saka has scored some big goals for Mikel Arteta. I like players who show up in big games to score the opening goal or the winner and Saka has done exactly that this season.
Leandro Trossard is another player I've been really impressed by - what an unbelievable signing he's turning out to be for £28 million! He ticks many boxes and I think he'll get into the Manchester City team tomorrow.
Prediction: Arsenal 3-0 Crystal Palace
Paul Merson's top-four predictions: Arsenal, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur
Three teams to be relegated: Southampton, Leeds United and Everton