Soccer English Premier League Prediction
Bournemouth vs West Ham - Match Preview
⚽ 23 April 2023 - 13:00 GMT +0
Manager Gary O’Neil warned his Bournemouth team that they are “still in a scrap” to maintain their place in the Premier League (PL) despite pulling clear of the relegation zone thanks to three wins in their last four outings (L1). Indeed, the Cherries come into the round six points clear of the bottom three, but their boss is all too aware that their current total of 33 points “is not going to be enough” to beat the drop.
Even knowing more points are needed, things are looking far rosier for the South Coast outfit, who head into this fixture against fellow relegation strugglers West Ham buoyed by back-to-back victories for the first time in 2023. They are now looking to replicate that form at the Vitality Stadium more consistently, with just two wins from their last eight home outings across all competitions (D2, L4) a little concerning.
History suggests they might be able to improve that record here, given the Hammers have only beaten Bournemouth away once in their history (D4, L2). However, David Moyes’ side made the journey south full of confidence after booking their place in the UEFA Europa Conference League semi-finals by beating Gent 4-1 on Thursday night, leaving West Ham with the bizarre possibility of potentially winning a European competition and also being relegated in the same season!
Moyes said he would allow his players to “enjoy” their European exploits for an hour, as he tries to ensure they don’t take their eye off the ball domestically. A victory in this match would lift them above their opponents in the table and further enhance their own chances of survival following a run of one defeat in nine outings across all competitions (W5, D3), although they have worryingly won only one of their last 12 away league fixtures (D3, L8).
📋 Key battle: After netting against Spurs last weekend, Bournemouth striker Dominic Solanke has lost just two of the last 18 games in which he has scored (W12, D4). Trying to thwart him might be Hammers goalkeeper Łukasz Fabiański, who is going in search of his first away win against the Cherries (D1, L4) having conceded at least two goals on four occasions.
⚡ Hot stat: West Ham is the only team in the PL yet to score a goal in the opening 15 minutes of their league matches this season.
Newcastle vs Tottenham - Match Preview
⚽ 23 April 2023 - 13:00 GMT +0
The Premier League (PL) weekend is finished off by the marquee fixture of the round, as Newcastle welcome Tottenham to St James’ Park in a six-pointer in the race for the UEFA Champions League places. It’s an advantage Magpies pre-kick-off, with Eddie Howe’s men retaining a three-point lead and a game in hand, although they’ll be keen to respond after a thumping 3-0 defeat to Aston Villa last week saw them surrender the third place to Manchester United.
That was just the second time they’d conceded three times in a PL game this term, with Howe admitting his side was ‘off it in every discipline’. Returning to Tyneside may be the perfect way to refocus his side’s energy then, as the only side to beat Newcastle on their own turf in the PL since the start of 2022 is Liverpool (x2), while they’ve conceded just nine league goals at St James’ all season.
That’s a record that’s unlikely to faze Tottenham as they journey north, as they’re unbeaten on their last four trips to Newcastle, scoring at least twice in each of those meetings (W3, D1). Tensions remain high in the camp though, with a 3-2 defeat to Bournemouth last time out leading to rather divisive comments from interim boss Cristian Stellini, stating ‘This isn’t a tactical problem, it’s individual mistakes’.
Stellini has every right to be concerned about his side’s leaky defence, with their 45 goals conceded the second-highest total among sides currently in the top-15 of the PL table! Spurs have troubles on the road too, with no win from their last four league road trips holding their European chase back (D2, L2) - a fifth without victory would be their longest such run since 2019.
📋 Key battle: Midfield dynamo Joe Willock could be the man to step up for Newcastle, as his last two goals came in a home win ‘to nil’ against ‘big-six’ sides. He’ll likely be marshalled by Pierre-Emile Højbjerg, who is yet to miss a meeting with the Magpies as a Spurs player (W2, D2).
⚡ Hot stat: Newcastle has scored 15 of their 23 home goals in the PL after half-time, while Tottenham has conceded 18 of their 25 away league goals this term in the second half.
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