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Premier League MatchDay 6 2013 Preview

last updated Saturday 28th September 2013, 12:49 PM

Saturday, September 28, 2013
Time Home   Away TV Venue
12:45 Tottenham  v  Chelsea BT Mike Dean
15:00 Aston Villa  v  Man City Michael Jones
15:00 Fulham  v  Cardiff Craig Pawson
15:00 Hull  v  West Ham Kevin Friend
15:00 Man Utd  v  West Brom Michael Oliver
15:00 Southampton  v  Crystal Palace Martin Atkinson
17:30 Swansea  v  Arsenal Sky1 Mark Clattenburg
Sunday, September 29, 2013
13:30 Stoke   Norwich Sky1 Anthony Taylor
16:00 Sunderland   Liverpool Sky1 Howard Webb
Monday, September 30, 2013
20:00 Everton   Newcastle Sky1 Phil DowdReferee

Premier League MatchDay 6 2013 involves all twenty clubs of the Premiership and kicks off at 12:45 on Saturday with a London derby between Tottenham and Chelsea. It ends on Monday evening at 20:00. with a match between Everton and Newcastle.

Armchair and far away fans are well catered for with five of the games on BT and Sky. BT seem to have drawn the plum fixture of Tottenham and Chelsea while Sky win on volume with four fixtures.

This early in the season league positions can obviously change dramatically however David Moyes' Man Utd really need a win to escape gathering storm clouds and join the top five while at the bottom Sunderland need to beat in-form Liverpool to show that they are more than just relegation fodder.

There is hardly any light between the top five teams so the pressure will be on to avoid defeat as any team down to 12th place could overtake them. A ray of sunshine for any team down to Fulham in 18th spot is that they are just one win away from the top half of the table.

Saturday 28th September 2013

12:45 Tottenham (2) v Chelsea (4) BTSport

The Premier League weekend kicks off at White Hart Lane, with Tottenham Hotspur's home date with Chelsea expected to see as many eyes fall on the respective dugouts as events unfolding on the field. Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas learnt his coaching trade under the watchful eye of Jose Mourinho, but is now very much his own man and will want to show the self-proclaimed 'Special One' that he took plenty from the time spent as his go-to scout.

Spurs' record against the Blues is not the best, to put it mildly - winning just three of 42 Premier League meetings - but they have opened the season in impressive style and boast the meanest defence in the top flight. Chelsea have also kept things tight at the back, conceding only twice, but both sides have struggled at the opposite end of the field and will want to address those issues on derby day.

Left-back Danny Rose is likely to make his return from a toe injury. Defender Younes Kaboul (adductor) is doubtful, but midfielder Etienne Capoue remains sidelined with an ankle injury. Spurs will give winger Aaron Lennon (foot) a fitness test while striker Emmanuel Adebayor is out through illness.

Chelsea will wait to determine whether midfielder Ramires is fit after the Brazilian suffered a hip injury in Tuesday night's Capital One Cup win at Swindon and was taken off at half-time. Ramires had replaced Marco van Ginkel, who is out for six months after undergoing knee surgery to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament.

Last season: Chelsea 2 Spurs 2, Spurs 2 Chelsea 4

Last five league matches: Spurs W W L W W; Chelsea W W D L W

Top scorers: Jermain Defoe (Spurs) 6; Oscar (Chelsea) 3

Referee: Mike Dean (Wirral).

Verdict Tottenham 2 Chelsea 1

15:00 Aston Villa (13) v Manchester City (3)

Manchester City have no such troubles at present, with 12 goals plundered in their last three outings in all competitions. Four of those came during last weekend's derby demolition of Manchester United, with a resounding victory over their fiercest rivals suggesting that all is well in the City camp under new boss Manuel Pellegrini.

His next challenge is to keep the momentum going during a trip to Aston Villa. The one criticism of City under Pellegrini would be their performances on the road in the league, and Villa Park has not always been a happy hunting ground for the Blues. Villa have, however, come unstuck in each of their two home league games so far and conceded four in front of their own supporters in a Capital One Cup clash with Tottenham on Tuesday.

Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert is hopeful a number of his key players will return. Gabriel Agbonlahor, Fabian Delph, Andreas Weimann, Ciaran Clark and Antonio Luna should all be available again after recent knocks and niggles. Lambert remains without Christian Benteke (hip) and Ashley Westwood (thigh), whilst Jores Okore (knee), Charles N'Zogbia (Achilles) and Gary Gardner (back) are long-term casualties.

Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero is to miss the game as the Argentina forward suffered a knock in the latter stages of the Manchester derby and will not be risked ahead of Wednesday's Champions League clash with Bayern Munich. Playmaker David Silva (thigh) is still out but could return against Bayern, while defender Martin Demichelis (knee) remains on the sidelines.

Last season: Aston Villa 0 Man City 1, Man City 5 Aston Villa 0

Last five league matches: Aston Villa W L L L W; Man City W L W D W

Top scorers: Christian Benteke (Aston Villa) 5; Yaya Toure (Man City) 5

Referee: Mike Jones (Cheshire).

Verdict Aston Villa 0 Manchester City 1

15:00 Fulham (18) v Cardiff (16)

Fulham could do with finding a spark of their own from somewhere, with a slow start having dropped them into the bottom three. Goals are proving to be something of a problem for the Cottagers, which is surprising given the enviable array of attacking talent they have at their disposal. A welcome victory in League Cup competition on Tuesday saw them inflict a first defeat on Everton under Roberto Martinez, so Martin Jol will be hoping that the tide has turned.

Cardiff City are the next visitors to the banks of the River Thames - with the Bluebirds having been rocked slightly by a testing opening to life among the top flight heavyweights, but with enough about them to offer hope heading forward that they can start landing a few crushing blows of their own.

Fulham defender Aaron Hughes and midfielder Bryan Ruiz face fitness tests as they have been absent with respective thigh and ankle injuries. Ashkan Dejagah (calf), Matthew Briggs (hernia) and first-choice goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg (shoulder) are still out.

Cardiff boss Malky Mackay could choose to hand Peter Odemwingie a first Premier League start for his new club. Odemwingie scored in the midweek Capital One Cup defeat at West Ham and could replace Fraizer Campbell. Mackay is otherwise expected to stick with the side that suffered a last-gasp defeat to Tottenham last weekend. Andrew Taylor will make his 100th appearance for the club, while Kevin McNaughton has joined Bolton on a month-long emergency loan.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Fulham W L L D L; Cardiff L W D D L

Top scorers: Darren Bent (Fulham) 2; Fraizer Campbell (Cardiff) 2

Referee: Craig Pawson (South Yorkshire).

Verdict Fulham 2 Cardiff 0

15:00 Hull (11) v West Ham (15)

West Ham United saw off Cardiff for a second time this season in midweek to secure cup progress, but they have failed to win in the league since ruining the Bluebirds' big day on the opening weekend. Sam Allardyce has had injury problems to contend with, and had every reason to feel hard done by after being left empty-handed against Everton last weekend, but he is in the results business and needs the Hammers to start showing the steely grit his managerial career has been defined by.

A trip to Hull City on Saturday will provide another stern test of Allardyce's credentials, with the Tigers unbeaten on home soil so far and buoyed by a productive start to their first campaign back at English football's top table - with seven points collected from five games.

Hull welcome back Maynor Figueroa as the Honduran left-back missed the 3-2 win over Newcastle due to personal reasons. Robert Koren (broken foot) and James Chester (hamstring) are long-term absentees and Paul McShane is only fit for the bench, meaning Steve Bruce must choose between Alex Bruce and Abdoulaye Faye at centre-back.

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce will welcome winger Stewart Downing back into his squad. The summer signing from Liverpool has been missing with a leg injury. Joe Cole (hamstring) joins Andy Carroll (heel) on the sidelines whilst defender George McCartney will not feature despite making his long-awaited comeback from a knee injury in Tuesday's win over Cardiff.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Hull L W L D W; West Ham W D L D L

Top scorers: Robbie Brady (Hull) 3; Ravel Morrison (West Ham) 3

Referee: Kevin Friend (Leicestershire).

Verdict Hull 1 West Ham 1

15:00 Manchester United (8) v West Brom (14)

Midweek cup duty was a lot kinder to Manchester United - and it needed to be given how things have gone for David Moyes so far. The fixture list has done the new Red Devils boss few favours, but he knows that the expectation at Old Trafford is to win every game, regardless of the opposition.

Overcoming Liverpool on Wednesday has helped to ease some of the pressure on his shoulders and United would appear to be a position to really ignite their season. West Bromwich Albion are next on the calendar, before a number of winnable fixtures on paper carry the reigning champions through October. Moyes cannot afford to take the Baggies lightly, though, and a 5-5 draw the last time the two clubs met suggests there could be more fireworks at the Theatre of Dreams on Saturday.

Manchester United manager David Moyes expects to have Robin van Persie and Tom Cleverley available. Van Persie has missed the last two games with a groin injury, while Cleverley was ruled out of the midweek Capital One Cup win over Liverpool with a knee problem. Marouane Fellaini returns after being cup-tied.

West Brom midfielder Claudio Yacob is set to be available having recovered from a dead leg, and Albion head coach Steve Clarke is hopeful forwards Victor Anichebe (ankle) and Nicolas Anelka, who has an unspecified knock, will be able to take part. Chris Brunt (groin) is expected to be missing for a third successive game. Matej Vydra, Zoltan Gera (both hamstring), George Thorne (knee) and Ben Foster (foot) are sidelined.

Last season: West Brom 5 Man Utd 5, Man Utd 2 West Brom 0

Last five league matches: Man Utd W D L W L; West Brom L D L D W

Top scorers: Robin van Persie (Man Utd) 6; Saido Berahino (West Brom) 4

Referee: Michael Oliver (Northumberland).

Verdict Manchester United 2 West Brom 1

15:00 Southampton (7) v Crystal Palace (19)

Southampton are one of only seven sides that can better that return, with heavy summer investment at St Mary's providing an immediate return. Mauricio Pochettino will be slightly concerned that his side have mustered just three goals in five outings, but they have suffered only one defeat and collected back-to-back clean sheets.

The most recent of those came at Anfield, with Dejan Lovren's header handing the Saints a first success on the red half of Merseyside in almost 10 years. They will be confident of replicating those heroics against Crystal Palace, with the Eagles having been offered a brutal reminder of just how difficult life in the Premier League can be with four defeats in five.

Southampton manager Mauricio Pochettino will assess the recovery of the players involved in the Capital One Cup. Tadanari Lee and Gaston Ramirez were among those to impress in the 2-0 defeat of Bristol City, although began to fade in the second half and the latter limped off late on. Rickie Lambert and Dani Osvaldo are set to start in attack, while Nathaniel Clyne will face his former club for the first time since leaving last year.

Crystal Palace will be without defender Damien Delaney because of an ankle problem. Midfielder Kagisho Dikgacoi is set to feature having been suspended for the home defeat by Swansea. Fit-again winger Jerome Thomas could start. Midfielder Yannick Bolasie (hamstring) is still sidelined. Captain Paddy McCarthy (groin) continues his rehabilitation, along with forward Glenn Murray (knee). Midfielder Jonny Williams and defender Jack Hunt (both ankle) are long-term absentees.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Southampton W D L D W; Crystal Palace L L W L L

Top scorers: Steven Davis & Gaston Ramirez (Southampton) 2; Marouane Chamakh, Danny Gabbidon, Owen Garvan, Dwight Gayle & Stuart O'Keefe (Crystal Palace) 1

Referee: Martin Atkinson.

Verdict Southampton 2 Crystal Palace 0

17:30 Swansea (9) v Arsenal (1) Sky 1

The final game on Saturday sees Swansea City pitch their neat passing game against the top flight benchmark when it comes to possession football. Arsenal have taken up residence at the top of the table after offering the perfect response to a shambolic opening day showing which saw them end a defeat to Aston Villa with 10 men and with terrace taunts ringing in the ears of manager Arsene Wenger.

Eight straight victories have been secured in all competitions since then - including a penalty shoot-out success on Wednesday against West Brom - with the likes of Olivier Giroud and Aaron Ramsey back to their best and summer signings Mesut Ozil and Mathieu Flamini highlighting how important they could be to the Gunners cause over the next few months.

Captain Ashley Williams is a major doubt for Swansea. The Wales defender has been struggling with an ankle injury and manager Michael Laudrup says he has less than a 50 per cent chance of featuring against the Gunners, with Jordi Amat set to deputise. Pablo Hernandez will again miss out to due to a hamstring injury.

Arsenal will give fitness tests to midfielder Aaron Ramsey (thigh) and Mathieu Flamini (shoulder). England forward Theo Walcott has responded well to surgery on a minor abdominal problem and faces up to five weeks recovery time. Tomas Rosicky (thigh) could return for the Champions League game against Napoli, but Santi Cazorla (ankle), Yaya Sanogo (back), Lukas Podolski (hamstring), Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Abou Diaby (both knee) are all out.

Last season: Swansea 0 Arsenal 2, Arsenal 0 Swansea 2

Last five league matches: Swansea L L W D W; Arsenal L W W W W

Top scorers: Miguel Michu & Wilfried Bony (Swansea) 5; Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal) 7

Referee: Mark Clattenburg (Tyne & Wear).

Verdict Swansea 1 Arsenal 2

Sunday 29th September 2013

13:30 Stoke v Norwich Sky 1

Turning the attention to Sunday, and Stoke City will want to pile more misery on Norwich City. Mark Hughes knew it would take time to alter the Potters' public image upon inheriting the managerial reins from Tony Pulis, but he would appear to have them heading in the right direction.

They will not be the only side to come unstuck at Liverpool and Arsenal this season, and they appear to have lost none of their ability to grind out results when dogged determination is required. Norwich showed against Watford on Wednesday that they also have the ability to dig themselves out of a hole, but they are yet to display such traits on the Premier League stage and will need no reminding of how important it is to start putting points on the board if they are to avoid becoming wedged in a scrap at the wrong end of the division.

Stoke manager Mark Hughes has a doubt over Matthew Etherington after he suffered whiplash in a traffic incident on Friday morning. Hughes is hopeful the midfielder will line up against the Canaries. Hughes does not expect to have any more injury concerns and his only change squad-wise is the absence of goalkeeper Jack Butland who has moved to Barnsley on a short-term loan.

Norwich captain Sebastien Bassong remains a doubt. The defender missed the midweek Capital One Cup success over Watford after suffering a hamstring injury in the defeat to Aston Villa. Record-signing Ricky van Wolfswinkel is fit following a toe injury and 18-year-old Josh Murphy remains in the squad after scoring on his debut at Watford.

Last season: Stoke 1 Norwich 0, Norwich 1 Stoke 0

Last five league matches: Stoke L W W D L; Norwich D L W L L

Top scorers: Kenwyne Jones (Stoke) 3; Steven Whittaker, Gary Hooper & Johan Elmander (Norwich) 2

Referee: Anthony Taylor (Cheshire).

Verdict Stoke 1 Norwich 0

16:00 Sunderland v Liverpool Sky 1

After starting with three successive 1-0 victories, Liverpool have now gone three games without a win in all competitions and remain without a goal in the second half of any of their fixtures so far. The return of Luis Suarez to domestic action against Manchester United in midweek should help to reverse that trend, but he is still short on match sharpness and needs to play his way back into top form.

He is likely to get another much-needed run-out against Sunderland, making him a leading character in a Stadium of Light soap opera which opened on Sunday evening with the dismissal of Paolo Di Canio after just 175 days in charge. Caretaker coach, and Black Cats legend, Kevin Ball will oversee first team affairs on Sunday, but Sunderland desperately need to find stability from somewhere if they are to shake out of an alarming slump which already has them rooted to the foot of the table with just one point to their name.

Sunderland striker Steven Fletcher will be sidelined for up to six weeks with a shoulder injury. Defender John O'Shea, who came off with a niggle during Tuesday night's 2-0 Capital One Cup victory over Peterborough, is expected to be fit and midfielder Lee Cattermole could also figure after coming through that game unscathed. Full-back Phil Bardsley is close to returning from a broken bone in his foot.

Liverpool defender Daniel Agger is set to return after being left out of the midweek Capital One Cup defeat against Manchester United because of a side strain. Right-back Glen Johnson (ankle) is still out injured. Midfielder Joe Allen (hamstring) is absent while Philippe Coutinho is still recovering from a shoulder operation.

Last season: Liverpool 3 Sunderland 0, Sunderland 1 Liverpool 1

Last five league matches: Sunderland L D L L L; Liverpool W W W D L

Top scorers: Connor Wickham & Emanuele Giaccherini (Sunderland) 2; Daniel Sturridge (Liverpool) 6

Referee: Howard Webb.

Verdict Sunderland 0 Liverpool 1

Monday 30th September 2013

20:00 Everton v Newcastle  Sky 1

Everton manager Roberto Martinez is set to revert back to his first-choice line-up. Goalkeeper Tim Howard, Leighton Baines, Phil Jagielka, Gareth Barry, Ross Barkley and Kevin Mirallas will all come back in. Darron Gibson made his first appearance of the season in midweek but fellow midfielder Steven Pienaar (hamstring) has missed the last two games while Leon Osman sat out Wednesday's match with a groin problem.

Manager Alan Pardew will restore his big guns to the Newcastle starting line-up. Midfielders Yohan Cabaye and Hatem Ben Arfa and striker Loic Remy were rested for the 2-0 Capital One Cup third-round victory over Leeds. Defender Steven Taylor (hamstring) could also be involved, as could striker Shola Ameobi following his recovery from flu, but midfielder Jonas Gutierrez (hamstring) is likely to miss out despite his return to full training.

Last season: Newcastle 1 Everton 2, Everton 2 Newcastle 2

Last five league matches: Everton D D D W W; Newcastle L D W W L

Top scorers: Leighton Baines & Steven Naismith (Everton) 2; Hatem Ben Arfa, Loic Remy & Yoan Gouffran (Newcastle) 2

Referee: Phil Dowd (Staffordshire).
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