Thursday, 29 December 2016

Premier League Picks Of The Week 18

Sports - Football - Premier League - Week 18

The 18th week of the Premier League actions saw:

239 shots - most by Arsenal & Man United = 26 each
31 goals - most by Liverpool, Tottenham & West Ham = 4 each
236 fouls - most by Watford & Middlesbrough = 18 each
36 bookings - most by Burnley = 6
1 red card - Redmond for Saints
5 penalties - 3 scored (Deeney for Watford, Hazard for Chelsea, Yaya Touré for Man City)

What a game! It was very annoying to watch injury-hit Watford against dominant Crystal Palace. The competitive London derby encounter was spoiled by too many dives and whines, it was pathetic! Palace had taken the lead nice and comfortable thanks to Yohan Cabaye's low strike and should have been two up, but for Christian Benteke to screw up his spot kick. Then to fit the cringeworthy mess, Troy Deeney's soft penalty made it 1-1, no discrediting him becoming the 5th centurion in goals for the hosts. This one was a game to watch if you want to teach young players how not to play and what not to do!!! 💩🙈💩🙈💩

What a team! And Chelsea keep on going, recording their 12th consecutive league win, a club record. Even without Diego Costa and N'Golo Kanté, the Blues were unstoppable, downing Bournemouth 3-0 at Stamford Bridge thanks to Pedro and man of the match Eden Hazard with a goal each and Steve Cook's own goal deflection off the prior's strike. Liverpool are staying on their trail in second place with an impressive 4-1 home win against Stoke, keeping their unbeaten home record up and going, but still six points between the two sides at the top. ⚽️👊🏻⚽️👊🏻⚽️

What a man! Antonio Conte is the first manager to win 15 of his first 18 Premier League games. Jürgen Klopp stole some of that limelight on Tuesday when Liverpool thrashed Stoke 4-1 recording the 100th league goal under the German, a gift for Daniel Sturridge seconds after he came on as a substitute. Adam Lallana starred again for the Reds, click here for my match report. Cesc Fàbregas proved he's still got it, scoring or assisting in each of his last three Premier League starts for top dogs Chelsea. And last but not least, Man City's Yaya Touré kept his 100% penalty record in the Premier League, converting 10/10. ⚽️👊🏻⚽️👊🏻⚽️

What a goal! Henrikh Mkhitaryan's goal for United was phenomenal, goal of the season (so far), no question about it. The replays, the stunned crowd and commentators, in total awe, drooling over it again and again, proved that. Only catch: It was offside! Not just one player, but two or three red shirts! How the refs missed that, I don't know. Or maybe they were just as shocked by the goal's brilliance that they forgot what/where/who/why/how they were doing... It helped the Red Devils to their fourth successive Premier League win, boss José Mourinho certainly didn't have any complaints, for a change!

What the hell?! As mentioned above, so many refereeing decisions were not just questionable, but blatantly wrong! From dives, free kicks, penalties, goals... To red cards! Nathan Redmond's sending off in the second half, when the score was just 1-2, was harsh to say the least and a game changer for the Saints against Spurs. It turned a competition into a thrash. Shame. Farce. Costly. Oh so crucial. Why replays cannot be used like in tennis, cricket, rugby... I keep on asking and shaking my head again and again... 💩🙈💩🙈💩

My Predictions - Actual Results
Watford 0:1 Crystal Palace - 1:1
Arsenal 2:0 West Brom - 1:0
Burnley 0:0 Middlesbrough - 1:0
Chelsea 2:1 Bournemouth - 3:0
Leicester 3:2 Everton - 0:2
Man United 2:1 Sunderland - 3:1
Swansea 0:0 West Ham - 1:4
Hull City 1:2 Man City - 0:3
Liverpool 2:1 Stoke City - 4:1 or click here for my match report
Southampton 1:2 Tottenham - 1:4

Click here for last week's Premier League Picks.

Pictures taken from the BBC match reports.

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