Manchester United v Crystal Palace, Saturday, BT Sport, 12.45pm
The proper football returns after the international break with the Stretford End likely to get a glimpse of £28m man Marouane Fellaini at some point. United failed to score against Chelsea and Liverpool in their last two games as the supply line to Robin Van Persie was cut off.
With the Manchester Derby looming next weekend David Moyes needs three points in the early kick-off or MUFC will be trending on Twitter. And not in a good way.
- Manchester United have never lost to Crystal Palace at Old Trafford in the Premier League.
- The last time the sides met here Palace ran our 2-1 winners in the League Cup in 2011 (AET).
- United’s 0-0 draw with Chelsea was the first time they’d failed to score at Old Trafford in a league game in 77 games (Arsenal, May 2009).
- Robin van Persie touched the ball just seven times in the opening 15 minutes against Chelsea.
- United conceded just one corner against Jose Mourinho’s side.
- United took 75 of 84 possible points in matches against teams outside the eventual top six last season.
- Marouane Fellaini was Everton’s top Premier League scorer with 12 goals last season.
- Betting: Manchester United v Crystal Palace
Sunderland v Arsenal, Saturday, Setanta Sports, 3pm
Arsene Wenger left it late and probably put himself and the club through more hardship than was neccesary, but record £42.5m signing Mesult Osil could make his debut for the Gunners against Sunderland on Saturday. After an opening-day loss to Aston Villa, Arsenal have beaten Fulham (a) and Spurs (h) to get back on track.
The Mackems problems are mounting though as player dissatisfaction has spread to the terraces and Paolo Di Canio’s kamikazee man–management style comes under the microscope. Di Canio is 15/8 to win the dreaded Sack Race with Paddy Power and with Liverpool, Manchester ans Man City to come, he needs to turn it around sharpish at the Stadium of Light.
- The Gunners are unbeaten in their last three league visits to the Stadium of Light, winning 1-0 and 2-1 in their last two trips .
- Arsenal took 32 points from a possible 36 against teams in the bottom six last season.
- Arsene Wenger’s side won 10 and drew five of their 19 games on the road in 2012/13, scoring 25 goals, conceding 14.
- Racord signing Mesut Ozil (link to Arseblog) created 92 chances in La Liga last season.
- French striker Giroud has scored four goals in five games in all competitions this season.
- All 14 of Giroud’s Premier League goals have been scored in the capital.
- Goalkeeper Wojciec Szczesny has kept three clean sheets since the season started.
- The Gunners kept a clean sheet in the derby win over Spurs – to add to their 14 last term in the league.
- Arsenal’s defence conceded only five goals in their final 10 games last season on the way to fourth spot.
- Betting: Sunderland v Arsenal
Everton v Chelsea, Saturday, Sky Sports 1, 5.30pm
A canny bit of Deadline Day business saw Roberto Martinez offload the hairy Marouane Fellaini for £28m and getting James McCarthy, Gareth Barry and Romalu Lukaku for way less. The Spaniard managed to hang onto Leighton Baines and about £15m quid so now just needs to concentrate on getting his – and the club’s – first win of the season.
Both sides are unbeaten so far although Jose Mourinho’s team are two wins and a draw and four points better off than than the Merseysiders. Chelsea’s nw signing Samuel Eto’o could make his debut at Goodison Park.
- The Toffees are chasing their 11th Premier League game (7th in all competitive games) undefeated at Fortress Goodison.
- Everton have kept a clean sheet in their last six Premier League home games.
- The Toffees have won three of their last four Premier League home games against Chelsea
- The sides haven’t played out a 0-0 draw at Goodison since Dec 2008.
- There’s been 13 goals in the last five league games between the sides.
- Steven Pienaar’s has scored two goals in his last three games against Chelsea.
- Roberto Martinez has won just one of his last 11 games as a manager in the Barclays Premier League (W1 D6 L4).
- Leighton Baines played every minute of the Premier League last term.
- Chelsea’s won 2-1 here last season in Everton’s only home defeat of the campaign.
- Frank Lampard scored twice in that game as Chelsea came from behind to win.
The England international has scored 16 league goals for Chelsea since the beginning of the 2012 season.
- Everton have had 41 league stalemates in the last three Premier League seasons.
- Betting: Everton v Chelsea