⛅️ Friday Forecast: Conte's Chelsea return, Man Utd trouble, Jesus goals? | OneFootball

⛅️ Friday Forecast: Conte's Chelsea return, Man Utd trouble, Jesus goals?

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Dan Burke

After a brilliant opening round of Premier League fixtures, round two this weekend should be just as good, if not better.

💪 Game of the weekend

Chelsea v Tottenham

The standout fixture of the weekend is an early London derby and a return to Stamford Bridge for Antonio Conte.

It has been a rather chaotic summer for Chelsea and, with plenty of transfer irons still in the fire, the Blues feel like a rather incomplete team at the moment. But they made a solid start to the season with that 1-0 win at Everton last Saturday, in which new signing Kalidou Koulibaly was particularly impressive.

As for Tottenham, a title challenge seems a genuine possibility with the team Conte has built, and they got off on the right foot with a dominant 4-1 victory over Southampton last weekend.

In Harry Kane, Heung-min Son and Dejan Kulusevski, they have one of the best forward lines in the league, and it will be fascinating to see how Koulibaly and Thiago Silva handle them on Sunday.

If these teams want to compete for the title this season, these are the sort of games they have to be winning.

📊 Fun fact: Tottenham have won just one of their last 37 away matches against Chelsea in all competitions.

🔮 Our prediction: Chelsea 1-2 Tottenham

Chelsea 2
Tottenham 2
Full time

😨 Potential upset

Brentford v Manchester United

A new era officially got under way at Old Trafford last weekend but on the evidence of Manchester United’s 2-1 defeat to Brighton, it looks uncannily like the last era.

Rome wasn’t built in a day though, and it will take time for Erik ten Hag’s ideas to truly take hold. It would not be a surprise to see further signings before the transfer window in an attempt to accelerate that process.

What United probably could have done without this weekend is a tricky game against another well organised side, but that’s exactly what they’re up against in Brentford.

Many have wondered whether Thomas Frank’s side might be in for a bit of Second Season Syndrome this year, and when they were 2-0 down to Leicester last weekend the chin stroking went into overdrive. But a late comeback saw them salvage a point to begin the new campaign, and they can feel confident going into their first home game.

📊 Fun fact: Brentford haven’t lost their first home game in any of their six previous top-flight campaigns, winning five and drawing one.

🔮 Our prediction: Brentford 1-0 Manchester United

Brentford 4
Manchester United 0
Full time

👍 Big favourites

Manchester City v Bournemouth

It was always highly unlikely that Erling Haaland wouldn’t be a success in the Premier League, but received wisdom dictated that the Norwegian striker would probably need some time to settle.

He made a mockery of that wisdom with a sensational display at West Ham last weekend in which he scored twice and looked pretty terrifying throughout. Bournemouth’s defenders will have been having nightmares about him all week.

The Cherries made a great start to their season, beating Aston Villa on the opening day and making those who predicted them to go straight back down think twice.

If they can take something from the Etihad Stadium this weekend then some hasty revisionism of Scott Parker’s side will be required, but it’s a big ask.

📊 Fun fact: Manchester City have won all 10 of their Premier League matches against Bournemouth, the best 100% winning ratio by a team against another in Premier League history.

🔮 Our prediction:  Manchester City 3-0 Bournemouth

Manchester City 4
Bournemouth 0
Full time

🤔 Too close to call

Brighton v Newcastle

Away from the bright lights of the so-called Big Six, this could well be the most interesting contest of the weekend.

Brighton were outstanding in their win at Old Trafford last weekend and the Seagulls seem to have taken the losses of Marc Cucurella and Yves Bissouma in their stride.

Newcastle, meanwhile, were by far the better side in their victory over Nottingham Forest and look like they’ll be giving every team in the league a good game this season.

The Amex Stadium will play host to a tactical battle between two good footballing sides on Saturday, and it’s very tough to call a winner.

📊 Fun fact: Brighton have never lost a home Premier League game against Newcastle in five previous meetings (W2 D3).

🔮 Our prediction: Brighton 1-1 Newcastle

Brighton 0
Newcastle United 0
Full time

🔥 Your Fantasy Football captain should be …

Gabriel Jesus (Arsenal)

For the first 15 minutes or so of Arsenal’s season opener against Crystal Palace last Friday, new signing Jesus played like a man possessed and looked certain to score.

The Brazilian quietened down somewhat after that but, though the goal never came, he showed glimpses of his quality throughout.

On his Premier League home debut for the Gunners against Leicester this weekend, we’re backing him to get on the scoresheet. He scored a hat-trick at the Emirates against Sevilla in a pre-season friendly and it could be a very happy hunting ground for him.

Other predictions

  • Aston Villa 2-0 Everton
  • Arsenal 3-1 Leicester
  • Southampton 1-1 Leeds
  • Wolves 2-2 Fulham
  • Nottingham Forest 1-2 West Ham
  • Liverpool 4-0 Crystal Palace