Tuesday and Wednesday bring a full slate of Premier League action to us as the reverse fixtures of the opening weekend are played. Tonight I’ll preview Tuesday’s action, tomorrow night I’ll preview Wednesday’s action. Remember all times are Eastern.
Portsmouth v Chelsea (2:45 pm live on Fox Soccer Channel). Portsmouth have had plenty of time to prepare for Chelsea after having a ten day break. Pompey will have seen Chelsea barely scrape by Juventus and Wigan Athletic. They will have heard Guus Hiddink say that Chelsea need to find a killer instinct. The last three Chelsea performances have proven that they can be had in the second half. The question is can Portsmouth take advantage? I don’t think so, but not for a lack of trying. Portsmouth 0 Chelsea 1
West Bromwich Albion v Arsenal (2:45 pm live on Setanta Xtra. On Setanta Sports 5:00 pm). The two sides who probably at present have the most in common. Plenty of ‘pretty passing’, but no goals to show for it. Arsenal have certainly had their chances, West Bromwich Albion not so much. Both sides are desperate for points for their own individual reason. The one thing that Arsenal have going for them is the fact West Brom leave massive gaps at the back. I just don’t think they can exploit them. Yes until Arsenal can prove they can score goal for two consecutive matches, my prediction for their matches set themselves. West Bromwich Albion 0 Arsenal 0
Liverpool v Sunderland (3:00 pm live on Setanta Sports). Liverpool will be without Fernando Torres and Alvaro Arbeloa, but will be looking to respond after their horrific performance against Middlesbrough. Sunderland have had plenty of time to prepare for Liverpool, but right now I don’t think it matters much. Liverpool will be looking to take out their bad performance against Boro on somebody, Sunderland will get to face the brunt of that revenge. This one won’t be pretty. Liverpool 3 Sunderland 0
So the story that seems to be getting the most legs tonight is Guus Hididnk’s pledge that he will chase Manchester United until the end of the season for the title. Well he’s right in one thing, it’ll be an uphill battle. As a Chelsea fan, I know this title race is over. There will be no repeat of what happened last season.
Sol Campbell feels that clubs that continue to see racial abuse towards players should see points deductions. That’s a start.
Speaking of the Carling Cup Final, Ben Foster will not have any action taken against him after it was revealed he used his video iPod to watch Tottenham players take penalties during the break between extra time and penalties.
And finally, David James warns there is still plenty of work to do in order for Portsmouth to avoid the drop.