Easter weekend means a feast of football with both the FA Cup Semi-Finals and Premier League action. BetVictor Brand Ambassador Michael Owen has previewed all of the fixtures on such a crucial weekend.
Man City v Liverpool
Liverpool to win 2-1
I can’t wait for this. The game last week was brilliant, and this should be more of the same. Man City are entering this on the back of that dramatic match in Madrid. That was far from a straightforward night, but to leave Madrid with a clean sheet, will be a huge positive.
As for Liverpool, it was an entertaining game against Benfica, but in the end it was straightforward. Klopp even had the luxury of resting a few players. Given how many important games are coming up, that’s a huge bonus. The movement of the front three caused City a lot of problems last week, and they were exploiting City’s high line.
The fact City had such an intense game on Wednesday is bound to play a factor here. They picked up a few knocks in the game as well, I’m putting Liverpool as slight favourites. 2-1 Liverpool.
Chelsea v Crystal Palace
Chelsea to win 2-1
Despite going out, there’s lots of positives for Chelsea to take from the game in Madrid. I thought they were outstanding and honestly, I don’t know how they didn’t go through. Prior to that moment of genius from Modric, Chelsea were so dominant.
It’s great to see Palace get this far. I think the job Vieira has done is one of the stories of the season, and they deserve a big occasion like this. They’ve got a lot of threat in this side, so I’m certainly not going to underestimate them.
I think Palace will play with nothing to lose and I wouldn’t be shocked to see them score here. I just think Chelsea will be too strong. I think they’ll enter this with renewed optimism after Tuesday’s performance and win this 2-1.
Tottenham v Brighton
Tottenham to win 3-1
Spurs have been superb in recent weeks. Conte is really starting to get the best out of this side. I think the two signings from Juventus have really lifted this side. Bentancur is classy and composed in the midfield, and Kulusevski has been so dangerous in that front three. Spurs are one of the form teams in the league.
Brighton’s form over the last couple of months hasn’t been great, so to beat Arsenal last week came as a surprise! They showed what they are capable of, and what they showed for the first half of the season. They certainly did Spurs a favour that’s for sure!
Brighton will probably get a goal here, but I have to fancy Spurs who now look like the side to beat in the race for fourth. 3-1.
Man Utd v Norwich
Man Utd to win 1-0
There are big problems right now at Man United. The performance against Everton was shocking in spells, and there’s huge question marks over some of this squad. For all the talent on the pitch last week, they barely created anything. That shouldn’t happen.
Every credit to Norwich for the win over Burnley last week. It would have been easy for this side to down tools, but they keep competing in each game.
I think Norwich will keep this one tight but, in the end, United will edge it. 1-0 to United is my prediction
Southampton v Arsenal
Arsenal to win 2-0
Southampton are a strange side. They go through spells of brilliant form but are also prone to heavy defeats like the one last week. Make no mistake, Chelsea could easily have won by more than six. I’m curious what Southampton we will see here.
Just when I was beginning to trust this Arsenal side, they’ve now gone and lost two in a row! The pressure is now firmly on them, and they really can’t afford any more dropped points. The big worry is that the goals have really dried up. Just two goals in their last four, that’s not going to get them in the top four.
I’m picking Arsenal though. Southampton were all over the place last week, I don’t think we’ll see much improvement here.
Watford v Brentford
Brentford to win 2-1
That felt like a really significant defeat for Watford last week against Leeds. To lose, and lose by three goals, will be a tough one to take for this squad. Roy Hodgson has done well to give this side some life, but his work will be cut out now.
As for Brentford, its been a brilliant couple of weeks for the club. To follow up a 4-1 win at Stamford Bridge with a 2-0 win over West Ham is one of the highlights of the season. All of a sudden, they are creating loads of goals, with Toney and Mbeumo benefitting from Christian Eriksen’s arrival.
For that reason, I’ve got to fancy Brentford here. I’m leaning towards a 2-1 win.
Newcastle v Leicester
Newcastle to win 1-0
It was by no means a classic, but Newcastle’s win over Wolves was a vital win. That’s put some real breathing space between them and the bottom three and they are virtually safe. Defensively, they’ve shown a massive improvement since January.
As for Leicester, they’ve been in decent form over the last couple of months. There’s a lot of youth in this side at the minute, in the likes of Daka and Dewsbury-Hall, I think they’ll finish this season with some optimism for next season.
I’m leaning towards Newcastle here though. The atmosphere in the club and around the ground must be great now, and I’m predicting a 1-0 win.
West Ham v Burnley
West Ham to win 2-0
West Ham have been inconsistent in the league recently, their European adventure has taken a lot out of them. David Moyes will want to finish this season in good form though, they can still get a top-six finish.
Burnley’s defeat last week shocked me. I really fancied them to get the win over Norwich and put real pressure on the sides above them in the league. It feels like a missed opportunity.
I think Burnley might still be ruing that defeat last week. I’m going for a 2-0 win for West Ham.