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Hindsight's Premier League predictions

DANGER MAN: Palace star Puncheon (left) in action against Chelsea
Photo credit: Ernest Simons

ANOTHER ROUND of top flight fixtures kick off this weekend and Voice of Sport's guru-in-chief Rodney Hind is getting out his crystal ball again. Enticing games include Liverpool's visit to Tyneside and of course the Manchester derby on Sunday. Monday night football features a potential relegation scrap Palace and Sunderland.

All matches at 3pm unless otherwise stated

Saturday, November 1

Newcastle – Liverpool 12.45pm

Alan Pardew is, at last, seeing light at the end of the black and white tunnel. A certainty for the job centre a few games back, the Toon boss and his team’s long-suffering supporters are at last getting some positive results. Last time out in the PL, the north east outfit stunned Spurs at White Hart Lane with a 2-1 win. Liverpool are in freefall and will need captain Steve Gerrard to regain some form and inspire his lacklustre troops. Draw.

Arsenal – Burnley

The away win against Sunderland saw Gunners rise to fifth in the table and will no doubt build confidence. Theo Walcott is likely to return to action in this fixture and with Danny Welbeck and the in-form Alexis Sanchez also in the home forward line, Burnley might well be hit for six. Arsene Wenger’s men to enjoy a touch of claret (and blue).

Chelsea – QPR

This west London derby could be closer than some might think. The unbeaten hosts lead the table while their near neighbours are already in a relegation dogfight. Harry Redknapp’s team will do well to keep out the likes of Diego Costa, Didier Drogba, Willian and Oscar. Battling Rangers beaten in the end.

Everton – Swansea

This could be a goalfest. Both sides like to attack but have difficulty in keeping clean sheets. Veteran Toffee Samuel Eto’o’s brace against Burnley confirmed that he maintains his class. Former Liverpool ace Jonjo Shelvey, now in the Swansea ranks, will no doubt be the pantomime villain. Blues succeed in a thriller.

Hull – Southampton

Successive away draws against Arsenal and Liverpool will have boosted City’s confidence. Manager Steve Bruce has made some canny acquisitions, none moreso than goal-scoring midfielder Mohamed Diame. However, the Saints are in scintillating form and boss Ronald Koeman will be disappointed not to keep their fine run going. Entertaining stalemate.

Leicester – West Brom

This Midlands derby would have seen City as pre-match favourites a few weeks back. But they have taken a dip in fortunes. Conversely, West Brom – under the guidance of the much-maligned Alan Irvine – are proving the doubters wrong. Key to WBA’s improving fortunes are hotshots Saido Berahino and Victor Anichebe. WBA sneak it.

Stoke – West Ham

High-flying West Ham are fourth in the table with 16 points. Their impressive and deserved win against champions Manchester City augurs well for the future. Hammers’ Diafra Sakho looks like a world-beater at present and his goals have been pivotal to the East London club’s cause. Also proving his worth for Sam Allardyce’s men is midfield dynamo Cheikhou Kouyate. Stoke have been pretty slick themselves this term but they might just suffering a hammering at the Britannia Stadium.

Sunday, November 2

Man City – Man United 1.30pm

A last-gasp home point against Chelsea was celebrated like a Champions League win by United last time out. The jubilation underpins that they simply are not the team they used to be. Robin van Persie, whose goal was the catalyst for the delight, will need to perform again if the Red Devils are to get anything from their neighbours. City, beaten by West Ham in their last top-flight match, will be looking to bounce back and quickly. Home win.

Aston Villa – Tottenham 4pm

These two sides specialise in Jekyll & Hyde displays, so anything could happen at Villa Park! Villa will no doubt huff and puff but the visitors are likely to blow their house down, depending on exactly which Spurs side turns up. Emmanuel Adebayor is certain to play a key role for the inconsistent visitors. Away win.

Monday, November 3

Crystal Palace – Sunderland 8pm

This six-pointer will be swung by home advantage. Palace have looked decent under new boss Neil Warnock and they should have too much for a Sunderland side bereft of confidence after being mauled 8-0 by Southampton and mugged 2-0 by Arsenal last time out.

The away side need to keep an eye on danger man Jason Puncheon who has an eye for goal and an assist. Eagles swoop to take all three points.

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