Premier League predictions for Gameweek 15: Tips, picks & scorelines
Few days in the footballing calendar capture the imagination quite like Boxing Day and there are plenty of mouth-watering games taking place during this festive weekend.
The stand-out game of Boxing Day sees London rivals Arsenal and Chelsea face off at the Emirates Stadium, with the Gunners desperate for a return to form after going seven games without a win in the Premier League.
There’s also a mouth-watering fixture between two top-four challengers in the opening game of the day as Leicester City welcome Manchester United and Manchester City are in action later on as they host Newcastle United.
On Sunday, league leaders Liverpool welcome struggling West Bromwich Albion and two Portuguese managers face off at Molineux as Nuno Espirito Santo’s Wolves welcome Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham.
So, without further ado, let’s get into some predictions for Gameweek 15 and the matches taking place on the 26th and 27th of December..
It’s hard not to back goals in Manchester United games at the moment. The Red Devils smashed six past Leeds last time out in the Premier League and indeed, there have been four or more goals scored in seven of their last eight matches in all competitions (prior to their EFL Cup Quarter Final with Everton in midweek). Thankfully for boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, his side have come out on top more often than not in that run and they’ve shown real character in coming from behind against Southampton and West Ham in particular. Leicester have only failed to find the net in one of their last five league fixtures and in Jamie Vardy, they possess a man who has found the net no fewer than 11 times in 13 appearances so far this season, so they should cause the visitors some problems in this one. Scoreline prediction: Leicester 2-3 Man Utd
Aston Villa vs Crystal Palace prediction
Crystal Palace’s morale may understandably been dented by the 7-0 hammering that was dished out to them by reigning champions Liverpool last week and the Eagles have struggled in attack on the road this term, drawing blanks in three of their six away games, losing all three of those matches in which they failed to score. Aston Villa’s season meanwhile has been remarkable and after breezing past local rivals West Bromwich Albion by a 0-3 scoreline last time out, Dean Smith’s men have now picked up seven points from their last three Premier League fixtures without conceding a goal. The hosts should have too much for their Boxing Day opponents at Villa Park. Scoreline prediction: Aston Villa 2-0 Crystal Palace
Fulham vs Southampton
Fulham may have improved their performances of late, but goals have still been difficult to come by for Scott Parker’s men. Only Bobby Decordova-Reid has managed more than two goals for the Cottagers this term and indeed they’ve failed to score in two of their last four games. Both teams have found the net in only one of Southampton’s last three games and the Saints are continuing their fine away record from last season into the current one by going six games without tasting defeat on the road. Ralph Hassnehutl’s men are stronger on paper and in stronger form and we anticipate them edging out their relegation-threatened opponents in the capital. Scoreline prediction: Fulham 0-1 Southampton
Arsenal vs Chelsea
Arsenal are in wretched form at the moment and are winless in their last eight games in the Premier League ahead of Boxing Day’s all-London affair with rivals Chelsea. The Blues did bounce back to winning form against another London outfit in West Ham United on Monday night, but they’ve lost their last two matches on the road against Wolves and Everton which could spell trouble ahead of this shorter trip to the Emirates Stadium. Goals are likely – Chelsea have averaged two a game over their last six outings, while the Gunners have found the net 17 times in all competitions this term (prior to their mid-week EFL Cup tie with Chelsea) and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang did find the net in the team’s last Premier League home game against Southampton despite a below-par start to the season in goalscoring terms.. Scoreline prediction: Arsenal 1-1 Chelsea
Manchester City vs Newcastle
No Newcastle fan will look forward to their team’s trips to the Etihad Stadium. The Magpies have lost their last 11 consecutive league matches away against Manchester City and although they’re in decent Premier League form at the moment, the gulf in quality between these two squads is evident. The Citizens are yet to reach the dizzying heights they have reached in seasons gone so far this term, but their recent improvement has gone under the radar somewhat. Pep Guardiola’s men have gone eight games unbeaten in all competitions (prior to Tuesday’s EFL Cup tie with Arsenal) and kept clean sheets in no fewer than seven of those games, so their defensive solidity should provide the base for a comfortable win against Steve Bruce’s side on Boxing Day. Scoreline prediction: Manchester City 3-0 Newcastle
Sheffield United vs Everton
Sheffield United have been dramatically poor in the opening 14 games of the 2020/2021 Premier League campaign, managing to earn themselves just a second point of the season in their draw with Brighton & Hove Albion last weekend A major issue for the Blades has been a lack of goalscoring prowess and they’ve failed to find the net whatsoever in 50% of their league fixtures so far this term. The visitors to Bramall Lane on Boxing Day are a resurgent Everton, who have returned to form in the last fortnight, winning a trio of consecutive matches against Chelsea, Leicester City and Arsenal and conceding just once (from a Nicolas Pépé penalty) during that run . Scoreline prediction: Sheffield United 0-1 Everton
Leeds vs Burnley
Leeds continue to stay true to Marcelo Bielsa’s famed philosophy and their expansive style of play led to a 6-2 defeat at the hands of Manchester United over the weekend. In their last four Premier League games in fact, the Whites have scored nine times but shipped 13 and with a record like that, you can’t help but expect them to concede at least against Burnley’s physical frontline of Chris Wood and Ashley Barnes. The Clarets’ surprising win at Arsenal was their only victory in seven so far this season and against a team that have created more chances than anyone in the division this season with 64, they could be in for a tough night here in what is likely to be a severe clash of footballing styles at Elland Road. Scoreline prediction: Leeds United 3-1 Burnley
West Ham vs Brighton
West Ham United may have fallen to a 3-0 defeat to London rivals Chelsea on Monday, but the Hammers have performed above expectations of late and find themselves comfortable in mid-table having lost just one of their last eight home matches in all competitions. Brighton are the visitors to the London Stadium on Sunday, but with just one win to their name in their last 13 games, the Seagulls are unlikely to trouble the hosts too much. The last two wins that David Moyes’ men have picked up have been by 2-1 scorelines against Aston Villa and Leeds United and given that Brighton have lost to both Southampton and Tottenham Hotspur by the same scoreline this season, we can see that result playing out again here. Scoreline prediction: West Ham 2-1 Brighton
Liverpool vs West Brom
Liverpool truly hit their strike last weekend, racking up no fewer than seven goals in their thumping away win over Crystal Palace. This weekend, strugglers West Brom make the trip to Anfield and although Sam Allardyce will be tasked with making the Baggies more difficult to beat after replacing Slaven Bilic at the Hawthorns, those changes will surely take some time to come into effect given that his side have conceded 11 times in their last four matches. The Reds have failed to overcome West Brom in the last three meetings between the two sides, but with Mo Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino leading the line again after all getting on the scoresheet at Selhurst Park, you have to expect more goals in a comfortable home win here. Scoreline prediction: Liverpool 4-0 West Brom
Wolves vs Tottenham
Neither Wolves nor Tottenham are in great form at the moment. After a ten-game unbeaten run for Spurs came to an end with a 2-1 defeat at Liverpool last week, the Lilywhites were beaten 0-2 at home by Leicester City over the weekend, whereas Wolves’ defeat to Burnley on Monday night leaves them having lost three of their last four Premier League outings. We can’t see either side doing enough to win here but a low-scoring game has to be expected given that 64% of Spurs’ games this season have involved fewer than three goals (the second-highest percentage in the Premier League) and 57% of Wolves’ games seeing Under 2.5 goals bets come in. Scoreline prediction: Wolves 1-1 Tottenham