This could be a very long afternoon for Newcastle. The Premier League season is only two weeks old and already things are starting to look bleak. Their performance against Norwich last week would have many people lumping on them to fall through the Premier League trapdoor for the third time in 11 years. At the end of the day on Sunday, they may well find themselves bottom of the league with no points from three games.
Despite picking up four points, Tottenham have been far from their best and, after 60 minutes against Aston Villa, it looked likely that they would also have no points from two games since no one expected them to pick up anything away to City.
The average Spurs fan would have bitten your hand off if they were offered four points from their opening two games as the seconds ticked away at home to Villa. Spurs’ grit against both City, where they had four shots compared to City’s 30, and Villa has to be lauded and they now find themselves with a relatively easy fixture before the North London derby next week.
Spurs should win this one at their leisure.
Such has been Manchester City’s dominance domestically that approximately 72 million people were born between January 29 this year and last Saturday; the last two times City have dropped points in the league.
It is staggering that the blue half of Manchester went nearly seven months without dropping a Premier League point. In total, City conceded just four goals in a winning run spanning 15 games. Erik Lamela’s goal last weekend was the first league goal they had conceded at the Etihad since March.
It stands to reason that City will be keen to start an equally formidable run of results as soon as possible, which doesn’t bode well for Bournemouth. Eddie Howe’s charges have started the season well enough against two newly promoted sides and are at very little risk of being pulled into a relegation battle, but they could be handed a bit of a lesson here.
Last season, Bournemouth sat back and attempted to contain a visibly nervous and jittery City who couldn’t afford to drop any points. A Riyad Mahrez strike midway through the second half clinched a 1-0 for City, but Bournemouth drew critics for their defensive approach. However, if they abandon that approach, City will swat them aside like a fly just as they did to West Ham. It seems the Cherries are damned if they do and damned if they don’t.
Either way, City are going to win and the likelihood is they’ll keep a clean sheet in the process.
Wolves have started the season with two credible draws against Leicester and Manchester United. Their approach was predicated on conceded possession and sitting deep and, to their credit, it worked.
They have backed up those results with an extremely impressive win against Torino in the play-off round of the Europa League and now need a league win to cap off a terrific week.
They will be expected to be the aggressor against a Burnley side that is hardly renowned for dominating the ball. Burnley have been impressive so far this season though, thumping Southampton at Turf Moor and running Arsenal very close last week. The Clarets look to have improved over the summer and will be targeting an improved league position come next May. However, Wolves should have just about too much for them on Sunday.
Tottenham to beat Newcastle -2 @ 21/10
Man City to beat Bournemouth to nil @ 11/10
Wolves to beat Burnley @ 8/11