Week 13 EPL Preview: Can Tottenham stop this Chelsea juggernaut? 

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Tottenham have won just once in nine games in all competitions since beating Manchester City. Six wins from 12 league games is why they are currently out of the top four. Yes they are unbeaten but they are drawing too many games for a title contender. Tottenham face Chelsea, Swansea and Manchester United in their next three league games. The task is more difficult with the unavailability of thir first choice centre defensive partnership of Alderweireld and Vertoghen. The understudies in Wimmer and Dier are not as strong. But Pochettino could throw in another tactical surprise like he did at the north London Derby. Tottenham haven’t won at Chelsea since 1990 and they will be putting their unbeaten run on the line on Saturday. 

Chelsea have won six consecutive games and their defence hasn’t been breached in the same period. Tottenham’s first task would be to score against this Chelsea rearguard before thinking about winning the game. Chelsea face Tottenham and Manchester City in the next two weeks and we’ll know more about them after these games. If they come through the games unscathed, they would be unstoppable. And keep in mind there’s no distraction of European football, so the EPL title would be a big probability. 

Nobody has yet stamped their authority on this season, as we drift towards the first high water mark — that much heralded “busy Christmas period”. If City are to take this season by the scruff of the neck, you get the feeling that much work still lies ahead. Gone are those early days of fluid passing, high intensity pressing and scintillating football from Manchester City. They have won only three of their last nine games in all competitions after winning the first 10. Something is not clicking again and Pep Guardiola has got to figure it out before his club’s daunting December schedule that includes games against Arsenal and Chelsea. 

Burnley were completely picked apart by West Brom and considering the manner of that defeat, confidence would be probably low. They will take solace in the fact that their home form has helped them thus far and you can trust they will have a good go at City on Saturday. 

From rock bottom to within sight of safety, Sunderland manager David Moyes no longer looks like a lame duck. Stories of a premature departure from the Stadium of Light have been shelved and, behind the scenes, Moyes has been appreciative of the patience shown in him by fans and local media alike. Six points from their last two matches, winning 2-1 at Bournemouth before then crushing Hull City 3-0 last Saturday at home, has made relegation not nearly so inevitable.

The Reds looked a little off their game away at Southampton the last time and that probably had to do with the post – international break issues top club have. But the visit of Sunderland this weekend should allow them get another win. The Black Cats are in decent form but Liverpool have the quality to get past them. While the trip to Anfield looks daunting, Sunderland’s next two fixtures at home to Leicester and away to Swansea will provide more reasonable opportunities to win points. 

The November curse is real. No jokes. Arsenal have only won once this month. And the month has brought about a dip in form. Injuries to Carzola and Bellerin hasn’t helped while Ramsey has looked out of sorts since returning from injury. 

Premier League manager of the month of August looks like a long time now for Mike Phelan after one win in seven league games have put Hull City in one of the relegation spots. They just don’t seem to have the needed quality but they would have to ensure their home games get maximum attention. West Brom though are on a high after their 4-0 annihilation of Burnley. 

Middlesbrough will push on in their quest to make gains and turn over more big clubs with a trip to league titleholders Leicester City on Saturday. 

The Foxes have had an underwhelming start to the season and have struggled to maintain the supreme form that saw them lift the Premier League trophy last season. The arrival of European football at the King Power Stadium has proved to be something of a distraction for Leicester, who have slipped to 14th in the league — just one point and one place above Boro — since midweek Champions League games commenced. And while Boro’s recent results have been better than most would have predicted, they still loiter just above the relegation zone and so now is the time to start picking up the points. 

Crystal Palace have lost five games on the trot. They lose and win in bursts and that’s why the trip to Wales on Sunday is important. If they win, expect them to go a winning run from thereon. But it will be tough as Bob Bradley needs his first win. And they seem to be getting ever closer. However, Swansea look one – direction with most of their approach directed towards Sigurdson. Teams have worked that out and they know if they stop the Icelandic international, you stop Swansea. 

Walter Mazzari has taken to the EPL like duck to water. Watford currently sit in eighth position and even the owners probably didn’t expect the results to be this positive so early in the season. Roberto Peyrera has been a revelation so far and Capoue can’t stop scoring from midfield. Stoke will have their work cut out especially with the injuries in midfield. 

West Ham United travel to Old Trafford looking to get their season on track after a pathetic return of only 11 points and a place above the relegation spots. Manchester United on the other hand impressed in their draw at home to Arsenal and subsequently went on to earn a morale-boosting victory at home to Feyenoord in the Europa League. The signs are looking good for Jose Mourinho that his team are about to hit their strides. 

Southampton entertain Everton on Sunday evening. Ronald Koeman’s side have lost the early season momentum. Phil Jagielka is beginning to look his age while Lukaku has got to be more consistent. Yannick Bolasie however has to add an end product of goals to his game. £30 million is a lot of money to spend on a non-goalscoring winger. Southampton on the other hand hanged onto a draw at home to Liverpool last weekend but they will need to offer more in attack if they intend to get maximum points in this one. 

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