Premier League Matchday 26 Preview – Prediction + Tips 2018/19

It could have been so different, but Manchester City are back on top of the EPL for the time being. Two consecutive draws by Liverpool has seen them squander an opportunity to extend their league, instead allowing City to overtake them.

The title race is well and truly back on. Things are hotting up at the bottom of the table too, where a number of teams are in good form, but are still competing to avoid that final drop zone place. Fulham and Huddersfield are in deep trouble, and will need to start imminently if they are looking to mount a comeback.

Match of the Day

There’s no doubt about our match of the day. City host Chelsea on Sunday in a match that will have a profound effect on the makeup of the top four.

Manchester City v Chelsea
Manchester City Form Guide DWDWD
Chelsea Form Guide DLWLW
  • Venue: The Etihad
  • Sunday 10 February 16:00
  • Referee: Mike Dean
  • Quick Glance Odds H: 9/20 D: 7/2 A: 11/2

About the Game:

It’s official, Manchester City are once again at the top of the table. The midweek victory against Everton was closer than expected, but it put the Citizens on top, although they have played one game more than Liverpool.

It could all have been so different had Liverpool not missed their chance after City’s defeat to Newcastle a few weeks back. As it stands though, City are in the driving seat. And you wouldn’t want to bet against them taking control. Wednesday’s performance was far from vintage, but it was a gritty performance that got the job done, and showed that City look far more resilient than Liverpool of late. There will be a rest after this game before the Champions League resumes, but many players have played a lot of minutes of late. There may be some rotation then, but the strength of the squad means that whichever eleven players start here, City will be formidable. 

Bet on the match between Manchester City vs Chelsea at Grosvenor

It was vital that Chelsea got back to winning ways last weekend. It’s tough to know how much to read into a victory against struggling Huddersfield. However, Hazard was electric and scored twice, along with new boy Higuain, who will have his confidence boosted by also scoring a brace. 

This will be a much tougher task though and it will be interesting to see how Chelsea cope. They will enjoy far less possession than against Huddersfield and will likely rely instead on counter-attacks. Despite Higuain showing he still has what it takes, that approach may not play to his strengths. Instead, Hazard will likely be the one who can make the difference. He was electric last weekend and looked rejuvenated. But unless Chelsea are at their best defensively, they will stand little chance. Antonio Rüdiger missed out on the last match but should be available once again. His partnership with David Luiz has proved effective so far, but this will be the pair’s biggest test.

Prediction: Manchester City Win – City have finally got back on top in the league standings and Pep is sure to not let it slip through his grasp. City will now look to set the pace and shouldn’t slip up here.

Rest of the Premier League Games

The action kicks off in London on Saturday and ends in the Midlands, where Wolves host Newcastle on Monday night.

Fulham v Manchester United
Fulham Form Guide LLDWL
Manchester United Form Guide WWLDD
  • Venue: Craven Cottage
  • Saturday 09 February 12:30
  • Referee: Paul Tierney
  • Quick Glance Odds H: 9/2 D: 3/1 A: 4/7

About the Game:

Fulham have a daunting set of fixtures over the next eight weeks starting here. Today’s opponents are the most in-form team in the league, while Fulham’s form ranks second worst. The next home matches for the Cottagers are Chelsea, Liverpool, then Manchester City. Defeat here will perhaps truly be the beginning of the end for Fulham. 

Manchester United returned to winning ways with a resolute performance last weekend, along with a moment of magic from Pogba and Rashford. The two have combined eight times to score since Solksjaer took over as manager, and their almost telepathic understanding has been key to United’s success. The fixture list turns after this match and with the Champions League returning, the fixtures come thick and fast. As impressive as United have been, it will be difficult to keep up the strong results. But in this form, you wouldn’t put it past them.

Prediction: Manchester United Win – The Red Devils are still unbeaten under Solksjaer, whilst Fulham look like a team already resigned to their fate. 

Crystal Palace v West Ham
Crystal Palace Form Guide LLWDL
West Ham Form Guide DLLDW
  • Venue: Selhurst Park
  • Saturday 09 February 15:00
  • Referee: Craig Pawson
  • Quick Glance Odds H: 1/1 D: 23/10 A: 14/5

About the Game:

Palace picked up their first win in four games against a poor Fulham side. That was without the suspended Zaha, who is available once again for this match, so the Eagles should be even more potent upfront. 

West Ham put in the performance of the season to earn a point away at Liverpool on Monday night. The Hammers really deserved to win, especially with Liverpool’s goal being offside. It was a drastic improvement on recent performances and results, which should inspire the Hammers once again, especially with important players starting to return from injury. 

Prediction: Both teams to score – Palace are usually tough to break down at home, but if West Ham play anything like they did against Liverpool, they’re sure to find the net.  

Huddersfield v Arsenal
Huddersfield Form Guide LDWWD
Arsenal Form Guide LLLDD
  • Venue: John Smith’s Stadium
  • Saturday 09 February 15:00
  • Referee: Jonathan Moss
  • Quick Glance Odds H: 4/1 D: 3/1 A: 8/13

About the Game:

Huddersfield have by far the worst points per game ratio over the last eight fixtures and, despite a new manager inplace, there are few signs of it improving. Against one of the league’s best attacking sides, you wouldn’t fancy the Terriers here, despite home advantage. 

Arsenal matched Manchester City in the first half in their last match, but struggled to keep up in the second. This is an easier task and the Gunners will enjoy more possession, and with their attacking talents, should find a way to break the Huddersfield defence. 

Prediction: Arsenal Win – Arsenal struggled in the second half against Manchester City, but this will be an easier task.

Liverpool v Bournemouth
Liverpool Form Guide DWDDL
Bournemouth Form Guide LDLDW
  • Venue: Anfield
  • Saturday 09 February 15:00
  • Referee: Anthony Taylor
  • Quick Glance Odds H: 1/5 D: 6/1 A: 11/1

About the Game:

Are Liverpool feeling the pressure? Klopp insists not, but the Reds have now drawn their last two matches against teams outside the top six. They could have been seven points clear of City with a win last week, instead, they are now a point behind, although they have played one game less. Bournemouth are leaky at the back, while Liverpool are still almost unbeatable at home, so they should win again here.

Playing Liverpool at home is a daunting task, but this is perhaps the best time for Bournemoth to take a trip to Merseyside. With the Reds in poor form, Bournemouth’s counterattacking style may pay off here. The Cherries are however prone to conceding goals, so Eddie Howe must be weary of his high-risk, high-reward approach.

Prediction: Liverpool Win and Over 2.5 goals – Despite their patchy form of late, Liverpool are still immense at home, and with Bournemouth susceptible to conceding, we expect a comfortable win for Liverpool.

Southampton v Cardiff City
Southampton Form Guide WLWWD
Cardiff City Form Guide WDWLD
  • Venue: St Marys
  • Saturday 09 February 15:00
  • Referee: Martin Atkinson
  • Quick Glance Odds H: 8/11 D: 13/5 A: 15/4

About the Game:

Southampton continue to grind out results and pick up points, but they are still close to the relegation zone. That’s highlighted by the fact that defeat here would see Cardiff leapfrog the Saints and into safety. There can be no mistakes then, and despite Southampton’s excellent form of late, they need to keep it up. 

Cardiff’s impressive win in their last match will be a huge confidence booster coming into this vital game. A win here would see Cardiff leave the relegation zone for the fist time in months. Cardiff avoid top six teams over the next six weeks, so may be able to pick up some points, starting here, in a game that could prove crucial.

Prediction: Southampton Win – This is a huge game, but Cardiff’s away record still applies; they have won just once and lost nine of their twelve away games, while Southampton are in fine form.

Watford v Everton
Watford Form Guide LLLLL
Everton Form Guide DWDWW
  • Venue: Vicarage Road
  • Saturday 09 February 15:00
  • Referee: Lee Probert
  • Quick Glance Odds H: 13/10 D: 12/5 A: 2/1

About the Game:

Watford couldn’t find a way past a stubborn Brighton side last weekend, but the Hornets are looking better than today’s opponents, with just one defeat in their last six. Watford are just one point ahead in the table and will not want to fall below the Toffees with defeat. 

Everton’s poor run continues and the Toffees have now lost seven of their last ten games. The pressure is increasing on Marco Silva and this is another very tough test. Everton’s remaining fixtures, especially at home, are difficult, and things could get even worse for Everton.

Prediction: Watford Draw no bet – The pressure is on Everton, who also had to play midweek.

Brighton v Burnley
Brighton Form Guide WDLDD
Burnley Form Guide WWWLW
  • Venue: AMEX
  • Saturday 09 February 17:30
  • Referee: Stuart Atwell
  • Quick Glance Odds H: 1/1 D: 9/4 A: 14/5

About the Game:

Brighton earned a draw at the weekend but that was the first points they’ve picked up in their last four games. The Seagulls are much better at home and should be winning fixtures like this, but they host an in-form team that are unbeaten in six.

Burnley’s astonishing run continues, but they still sit just two points from the drop zone. A win would see them level on points with Brighton and really tighten things up at the bottom. Burnley are scoring goals, which is something they have struggled to do in the past, though their defensive resilience of recent years has disappeared somewhat.

Prediction: Under 2.5 goals – This will be a tight one, with neither team particularly strong in attack. 

Tottenham v Leicester
Tottenham Form Guide LDDDW
Leicester Form Guide WWLWD
  • Venue: Wembley
  • Sunday 10 February 13:30
  • Referee: Michael Oliver
  • Quick Glance Odds H: 4/6 D: 11/4 A: 17/4

About the Game:

Spurs set a new record for the most league games without a draw thanks to a late strike from Heung-min Son last week. Despite injuries to key players, Spurs march on and are closing the gap on the two teams ahead of them. With Kane and Alli injured, Spurs are over reliant on Son for goals, and the forward may soon need a rest. Whether he will get one or not remains to be seen.

Leicester have been poor in recent weeks and fans are growing frustrated at the lack of consistency. One clean sheet in the last seven is a big part of the problem, as Leicester do seem to find the net most of the time.

Prediction: Tottenham Win – Another game where the big team is playing at home, and we think Spurs will deliver again, as they look to keep up the pressure on the leaders.

Wolves v Newcastle
Wolves Form Guide DDWLL
Newcastle Form Guide LWDLL
  • Venue: Molineux
  • Monday 11 February 20:00
  • Referee: Graham Scott
  • Quick Glance Odds H: 8/11 D: 13/5 A: 15/4

About the Game:

Wolves look to have cemented their status as the best of the rest, having put distance between themselves and eighth placed Watford. There are a host of teams chasing, so Wolves can’t let up, but they are playing fantastic football, scoring goals, and getting results. This won’t be easy, but there’s no reason why that should stop here.

Rafa Benitez continues to get the most from his side and was unlucky to lose last weekend. Two wins from the last three, including that magnificent victory against Manchester City, means spirits are fairly high at Newcastle, but this is another game where the Magpies must be at their best just to stay in contention.

Prediction: Under 2.5 goals – Newcastle are tough to beat and were so close to earning a point against Tottenham. They will have a clear game-plan here and should be able to at least keep things tight.

Combi bet of the day: Our Pick*

Game Event Odds Cumulative Odds
Fulham v Manchester United Manchester United Win 4/7 1.57
Southampton v Cardiff Southampton Win 8/11 2.71
Watford v Everton Watford Draw no bet 8/13 4.38
Spurs v Leicester Spurs Win 4/6 7.3
Crystal Palace v West Ham Both teams to score 3/4 12.78

Place a bet on this at Grosvenor

Bookie of the week: Our Pick

Grosvenor are our bookie of the week. To find out all you need to know about Grosvenor you can read our Grosvenor review.

* All our selections are provided for entertainment only and should only be used for informational purposes. Whilst we use our experience and knowledge to help inform you to make a considered bet, we are not responsible for any losses that may arise from actual results being different than predicted.

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