West Ham showed plenty of bottle to shut Chelsea out on Sunday, and that’ll encourage Manuel Pellegrini to adopt exactly the same tactics against Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United.
The Hammers registered just one shot on target against Chelsea, and they will dig in for as long as possible against United, because they know they’ll have chances to nick a goal against a United side who have kept just one league clean sheet this season.
Coupled with this, Mourinho’s teams aren’t the most swashbuckling on the road, so backing 0-0 at half-time looks like a good bet.
The aforementioned Lacazette’s incorporation into the starting line-up has worked wonders for Arsenal; it’s enabled Emery to play with two out-and-out strikers, resulting in the Frenchman netting twice in his three starts.
Couple this with Watford keeping just the one league clean sheet this season, and you’d fancy Arsenal to score on Saturday, with Lacazette being one of the key danger men.
The Terriers have looked really poor this season: three goals scored and 14 conceded in six league matches doesn’t make for pretty reading, and we can’t see them getting much joy against a vastly superior Spurs side.
The lack of goals in David Wagner’s squad is a major worry; Laurent Depoitre and Steve Mounie are not strikers who will single-handedly keep you in the Premier League, but it’s the volume of goals they concede which will likely lead to relegation.
With no out-and-out reliable goalscorer or any semblance of defensive discipline, we simply do not see how Huddersfield survive this season.
The Terriers have lost half of their league matches by two goals or more, and we expect Spurs to heap more misery onto this Huddersfield defence.
With six goals in all competitions this season, it’s no surprise that Sergio Aguero is once again Manchester City’s top goalscorer. While Pep has been rotating his attacking midfielders on a game-by-game basis, Aguero has started every league match this season, and he’s rewarded his manager with the same ruthless efficiency we have become so accustomed to.
Chelsea won this corresponding fixture 1-0 last season, and though Liverpool have massively improved this time around, the home advantage will be a hugely important factor.
A more important factor will be Eden Hazard. The Belgian’s goal against Liverpool in the EFL Cup didn’t only serve to knock them out of the completion, but it’s created that unshakeable fear factor which will develop amongst Liverpool ranks, despite their first choice defence not playing.
Eden Hazard really is a phenomenon. That low centre of gravity makes him hard to bully off the ball, and the way he gets his body between the ball and man is so effective. If Chelsea are to get anything from this match, they’ll need Hazard to perform – and I believe he will; six goals in 15 matches against Liverpool is a very good return.