Former Arsenal player, Charlie Nicholas, has predicted some of the fixtures that will played in the Premier League this weekend.
Domestic football returns after a two-week international break, with Liverpool hosting Newcastle, before Manchester City travel to Norwich and ends with Watford hosting Arsenal in a London Derby.
Nicholas delivered his predictions to Sky Sports.
Norwich vs Manchester City:
You have no reason to look at the concerns of Man City and worry, apart from the injury to Aymeric Laporte perhaps. Norwich are good going forward – everyone is talking about Teemu Pukki but Todd Cantwell has started great too. The full-backs like to get high, but they will not be doing that against City. The Norwich defenders will be rash against Pep Guardiola’s side. The fact that Grant Hanley cannot get in the Scotland side tells you something.
Daniel Farke does not adopt a plan B, which I applaud – the expectation is that you are going to get beat. If you ask 90 per cent of Norwich fans right now if they would take a 4-1 hammering trying to open the game up, or whether they would rather lose 1-0 and not have a shot on goal, I think they would go for the former.
It is not an embarrassment losing to Manchester City but they need to go at it from a positive aspect, which is how you test yourself. Kevin de Bruyne was amazing in Glasgow, as was Raheem Sterling over the international break, which is why I will go with this scoreline.
CHARLIE PREDICTS: 2-6
Watford vs Arsenal:
Watford will look to cause another upset and get off the mark. They like to get physical with Arsenal, so they may approach it this way again.
With Quique Sanchez Flores coming in again, it will certainly boost the hosts. I liked him before, but he didn’t play overly aggressive. He played quite technically.
How are Arsenal’s struggles at the back capable of competing with the physical side? The midfield and attack should be strong enough – if Alexandre Lacazette is fit we will be firing.
CHARLIE PREDICTS: 1-3
Liverpool vs Newcastle:
I am reading this week that there are a few injuries floating around. Steve Bruce’s last away game at Tottenham was a stunning result. Newcastle will be better suited away from home – they do not know what their fans will be doing regarding ownership.
I don’t know who will be fit for Liverpool or whether they will go with the formidable front three, but at the moment Liverpool look as though they can wipe the floor with most teams. You cannot open up against them. Joelinton needs time and will not get any service. We will see how structured Newcastle can be at the back – they will have been working hard defensively.
CHARLIE PREDICTS: 2-0
Manchester United vs Leicester:
It is a cracking game, one which I would like to see. Leicester are visiting one of the teams I think they could catch. I am looking at what they have and what they don’t have, but the simple fact is Leicester have started the campaign well. This is a game where they can open up and threaten Manchester United.
If they play open and expansively then they will be content. Brendan Rodgers’ side has a shape but can counter-attack and are good with the ball. I don’t know whether Anthony Martial will be fit. Marcus Rashford will play through the middle but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team will still be vulnerable in defence.
CHARLIE PREDICTS: 1-1
Wolves vs Chelsea:
Wolves do well against the big teams. Tammy Abraham has been in form and Mason Mount has been spectacularly good. Chelsea are still vulnerable at the back and will be threatened by Diogo Jota and Raul Jimenez up front. I see Wolves beating Chelsea this weekend, and Wolves are the team, as many people that are talking about Leicester, that could definitely override the top-six trend.
CHARLIE PREDICTS: 2-1