The Premier League is back this weekend after the third round of the EFL Cup, with Manchester United's shock elimination against West Ham United one of the major talking points from midweek action. The likes of Liverpool, Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur all made it through to the next round, while Everton were eliminated by Queens Park Rangers in a thrilling penalty shootout.
When I saw the list of fixtures this season, I couldn't separate a lot of teams, as they don't have a lot between them. The 2021-22 Premier League season has been an interesting one right from week one, but matchday six could turn out to be the most exciting one yet.
Arsenal are set to take on arch-rivals Tottenham Hotspur in the north London derby, while Chelsea and Manchester City will lock horns in what could be an important fixture in the Premier League title race. On that note, here are my predictions for each of the ten games this weekend, starting with the big one at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea v Manchester City
This is obviously a hard game to call. I said from day one that every game counts this season in the Premier League - I don't see the top four teams losing 4-5 times over the course of 38 games. Chelsea played both Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur in recent weeks and ripped both of them to shreds, so I think they will fancy their chances.
Manchester City, on the other hand, have failed to score in two of their first five Premier League games, which is a bit worrying for a team of their caliber. I don't usually bet against Manchester City because on their day, they blow teams away, but the fact that they don't have a center forward is hurting them already. They are looking after Kevin De Bruyne and his ankle, but this is a game he should start.
That said, Chelsea have home advantage and are coming on the back of two stunning results, so I fancy them to get the job done.
Prediction: Chelsea 2-1 Manchester City
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Manchester United vs Aston Villa
Manchester United are a funny team - they are not playing well at the moment, but they've won four Premier League games out of five this season. If you look at their results, though, you'll see that they've been a bit fortunate along the way. The game against Wolves was a smash and grab, while the one against Newcastle United was in the balance at 1-1 before Cristiano Ronaldo scored his second of the night.
I don't mean to disrespect them, but Young Boys are a pub team in Europe, but Manchester United lost to them in the UEFA Champions League! They fell over the line against West Ham United in the Premier League and were beaten by the same opponents in the EFL Cup at Old Trafford, so it's not been plain sailing for them.
Aston Villa played well against Chelsea in the first half and should have been in front, but they failed to put away their chances. If they start like that against Manchester United, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and co could be in trouble! I've seen enough this season to think that Villa can cause a few problems, so I think this game will finish 1-1.
Manchester United always hope for Cristiano Ronaldo to come to the party, but the rest of the team needs to show up in the weeks ahead. They know they can't keep riding their luck, so this will be an interesting game.
Prediction: Manchester United 1-1 Aston Villa
Leicester City vs Burnley
I think Leicester City will win this one quite easily. They were really unlucky against Brighton and played a good game against Manchester City before that, while Burnley have been really disappointing in the Premier League this season.
I can see this one finishing 3-0 in favor of Leicester City. They are a solid team and will have miles too much for Burnley this weekend in the Premier League.
Prediction: Leicester City 3-0 Burnley
Everton v Norwich City
Norwich City have now lost 16 Premier League games on the trot and were well beaten by Watford last weekend. Arsenal beat them 1-0, but it could so easily have been more. They shoot themselves in the foot regularly and are guilty of playing out from the back at the wrong times, which has contributed to their torrid run of form in the top-flight.
I just don't see anything other than an Everton win and if I look at the fixture list, I can't see who Norwich are going to beat this season to get points on the board.
Prediction: Everton 3-0 Norwich City