Guest Post – The Big Match Part 1

soccer ball

Gumtree is pleased to welcome George Dearnaley as our first Guest Blogger. He will be covering football this year for us! George Dearnaley is a former Bafana player, supports AmaZulu & Manchester United. 

In this 1st installment of the BIG Match, we focus on the British Premier League (no longer English because it features 2 teams from Wales!)

It’s one of the most exciting title races in years as Chelsea, Arsenal, Man City, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur challenge for domestic honours – and this is no misprint – Manchester United are not included because they are out of the running this season. The current reigning champions find themselves a massive 15 points off the pace with only 12 matches left.

Even us die-hard United fans (yes, I am biased) admit that the league title is beyond us this season – the best we can hope (& pray) for is 4th position and Champions League football next season.
It’s an FA Cup weekend and 2 of the fixtures have got every football fan drooling over the possible outcomes.

Manchester City v Chelsea

It’s 2nd in the league vs 1st, a cracker of a fixture under any circumstance. This match is also a repeat of a recent league match where Chelsea snatched a 1-0 victory away at the Etihad stadium. It was City’s 1st home defeat of the season having won 11 of 11 and it was also the 1st time they hadn’t scored at home in 14 months! I don’t think this weekend’s result will have too much negative influence on the loser, if anything it might focus their efforts on winning the league title that little bit more, but expect Jose Mourinho to play a very cagey defensive formation with a lightning fast counter-attacking game. I still think the title will go to one of these 2 teams with Chelsea being my pick solely because they have the Special One.

Prediction: A draw! This actually suits 4th placed Liverpool…

Arsenal v Liverpool

Arsenal have hit a wobble and dropped 5 points over their last 2 league matches, and there’s no telling the psychological impact those 5 goals at Anfield did to their confidence. Remember they also conceded 6 away to Man City a few months ago. Their confidence has gone and they looked tired against Man United on Wednesday night.

But if Arsenal win this match it will restore their confidence and could be the catalyst to get their league campaign back on track. But if they lose I predict a small crumble in confidence and think that it will be Arsenal fighting for 4th place in the title race.

If Liverpool win, it will add to their current self-belief, and with Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez in such deadly form, I think it will be Liverpool who finish 3rd in the league although there is growing confidence among the Reds faithful that this could be their title this season. They must still play close rivals Tottenham, Chelsea and Man City at Anfield and one way or the other, they will have a massive say on where the Premiership trophy ends up at the end of May.

Prediction: Liverpool

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George Dearnaley is a former Bafana player, supports AmaZulu & Manchester United and loves talking football – follow him @zulushark

 

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