Leicester vs Liverpool

Leicester vs Liverpool Premier League Boxing Day PreviewWho: Leicester City vs Liverpool When: Thursday, December 26th @ 3:00pm ETLine: Leicester+240 | Draw +270 | Liverpool +108On October 5th, Liverpool hosted Leicester at Anfield. Leicester looked strong, but Liverpool was better. However, it almost ended in a draw.

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Possession was even, but Liverpool created many more chances. They got off 18 shots (8 on target) to Leicester’s 2 and 1. Given the disparity, it’s not surprising that Liverpool had a 3.75 xG to Leicester’s .1. However, it wasn’t until a late penalty in the box against Sadio Mane and a James Milner conversion from the spot that put the game away for the Reds. The final score: 2-1.

Two months later, these sides are 1st and 2nd in the table. Liverpool are returning to England from Qatar as champions of the world. Jurgen Klopp’s crew won the FIFA Club World Cup last Saturday. They defeated two quality sides in Monterrey (Mexico) and Flamengo (Brazil) to claim the only major trophy the club has never won.That’s the good news.

The bad news is they lost in-form Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to an ankle injury. And they may be physically and emotionally drained from the long trip.Leicester, however, have only taken 1 point from their previous two domestic matches. They drew Norwich 1-1 (!!!) and lost to third-place Manchester City 3-1 at the Etihad.How will this one go? Here’s a preview.
Leicester vs Liverpool Boxing Day match preview

Brendan Rodgers knows his squad can’t afford to lose this match. Leicester are 10 behind Liverpool. And the Reds have a game in hand. While the Foxes are almost assuredly qualifying for the Champions League this season, a loss here would bury their title hopes. 538 thinks they’re buried already. The Man City-loving site has Leicester at 84% to qualify for the UCL, but less than 1% to win the EPL.Let’s look back at their October 5th match for some indicators of what played out and what may change.

As mentioned, the sides were even on possession. Liverpool created the most chances. Their finishing was poor. Mo Salah had five shots on goal with nothing to show for it. Milner, Mane, and Roberto Firmino had 3 a piece. Liverpool has played more long balls this season than any other EPL side, and did so against Leicester as well. The Reds delivered 78 long passes to Leicester’s 64. Liverpool played six through balls to Leicester’s 4. However, the Foxes actually out-crossed Liverpool 20 to 17.Leicester went heavy on attacking the left flank, both all of the possession and crosses produced virtually nil. The shot chart from the match is ridiculous.

Dejan Lovren had a stand out game, winning 5 aerials and 2 tackles. Unfortunately, Lovren is unavailable this match.As is Ox. And Fabinho. And Joel Matip.Liverpool are beset with injuries.Between the injuries and heavy fixture schedule, Klopp will be forced to adjust his line-up and tactics.How Liverpool could line-up to stifle Leicester’s attack

This really should come down to control of the midfield. James Maddison is Leicester’s best player and could make life miserable for Liverpool’s tired legs. Most of Leicester’s attack back in October came down the left (46%) by Maddison as they tried to exploit space left by TAA pushing up. Gini Wijnaldum, if fit, is rested and would provide a likely candidate for defensive cover in front of TAA. That’s really the key match-up. Somebody needs to be a complete nuisance on Maddison.

Jordan Henderson has absolutely bossed in the #6 role covering for Fabinho of late. The Skipper should get the call in this match as well.On the left, Klopp could go to either Naby Keita or James Milner. It’ll likely come down to who looks freshest in training.

Defensively, Liverpool will have to roll out TAA, VVD, Joe Gomez, and Andy Robertson. Gomez is starting to look like pre-injury Gomez again. That’s a huge lift if he keeps improving his form. Jamie Vardy has 17 goals this season, leading the Premier League. A lot has been made about Vardy finishing at historically high numbers. While he’s a candidate to regress to the mean, I’ll believe it when I see it. When you’re in form, you’re in form. Lovren’s big body helped contain Vardy in the first match. Can Gomez be as effective?

Offensively, Liverpool have been uneven in finishing their chances. However, Leicester have been very lucky they haven’t conceded more. While Çaglar Söyüncü and Jonny Evans have made all Fox fans say “Harry who?,” Leicester have been the second luckiest side in the EPL this season in terms of xGA. They’re tied with Liverpool for fewest goals conceded (14), but have a xGA of 21.38.

Man Utd vs Newcastle

Manchester United vs Newcastle Steve Bruce continues to exceed expectations at Newcastle United and he can keep the feel-good factor going when the Magpies visit Old Trafford on Boxing Day Draw or Newcastle @ 21/10 with Paddy PowerBoth Teams To Score @ 1/1 with Paddy PowerAndy Carroll to score at any time @ 9/2 with Paddy PowerBruce to enjoy Theatre of Dreams return

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Steve Bruce is a legend on the red side of Manchester, having played for United from 1987 to1996, winning three Premier League titles among other trophies, but he now takes his Newcastle United side to Old Trafford for the first time.After losing away to Burnley, the Magpies returned to form on Saturday with a 1-0 home victory over Crystal Palace, extending their unbeaten league run at St James’ Park to eight matches.

Their away league form has been feast or famine, with three wins (at Tottenham Hotspur, West Ham United and Sheffield United) and seven defeats, and they have not triumphed at Old Trafford since December 2013, but this could be their best chance of victory since then, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men going into the contest on the back of a 2-0 defeat by the bottom club Watford.

Manchester United’s Boxing Day match could not be bigger for the club unless the Red Devils were fighting for a Premier League title. Which they aren’t. Which is exactly why it is imperative that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer engineers a victory at Old Trafford over Newcastle United, with kickoff set for 12:30 p.m. ET Thursday, live on NBCSN or live online at NBCSports.com.

Solskjaer has led the team to just two wins over its last six Premier League games, and with a host of potential slippery matches leading up to a date with Liverpool on January 19, all eyes will be on the Norwegian boss who most certainly is running out of rope. He could have reinforcements available soon, with Paul Pogba likely to start after he came off the bench against Watford, while Diogo Dalot could also make his return from a two-month injury and Eric Bailly is still out but getting closer.

Manchester United’s last result is just plain ugly – a 2-0 loss to bottom-feeders Watford that set alarm bells off all over the club. With games against plucky Burnley and Arsenal under new management coming up in the following days, this game against Newcastle feels like a turning point one way or another.

On the other side of the coin, Newcastle comes into the match sitting ninth in the Premier League table, level with Manchester United on points. That position marks a huge jump from where many expected the Magpies to be, a massive feather in Steve Bruce‘s cap. He has led the Magpies to three wins in their last four despite a host of injuries to the squad, sticking with Miguel Almiron through his early Newcastle struggles until he provided the winner against Crystal Palace last time out.

Even so, this match marks the start of a brutal festive fixture run for Newcastle, who still must navigate games against Everton, Wolves, and Chelsea through mid-January. A result at Old Trafford and potentially doing the double over Manchester United would give Newcastle some breathing room ahead of more difficult matches

Chelsea vs Southampton

Chelsea vs Southampton betting tips: Premier League preview, predictions By Ben GrayBen GrayLast Updated: December 25, 2019 7:02 am Chelsea vs Southampton prediction: Chelsea 3-1 SouthamptonA big statement victory for Chelsea.Frank Lampard got his tactics spot on on Sunday as the Blues remain in the Champions League places.Southampton meanwhile also recorded a huge victory at the weekend.

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Can the Saints shock Stamford Bridge? Highlights of Southampton 1-4 Chelsea Highlights of Aston Villa 1-3 SouthamptonHighlights of Tottenham Hotspur 0-2 ChelseaChelsea vs Southampton: Who will win?Chelsea are huge favourites to win this one at 4/11.Southampton meanwhile are 13/2 to leave West London with all three points.A draw, which would be a great result for the away side is 4/1.

Both teams to score is 4/6.Chelsea to win and over 2.5 goals is 8/11.Chelsea to win and both teams to score is 6/4.LONDON, ENGLAND – AUGUST 31: Tammy Abraham of Chelsea celebrates after scoring his team’s second goal during the Premier League match between Chelsea FC and Sheffield United at Stamford Bridge on August 31, 2019 in London, United Kingdom.

Tammy Abraham, as always, will lead the line for the Blues. He is 12/5 to open the scoring and 8/13 to net anytime.Willian meanwhile was their man for goals at the weekend, The Brazilian is 9/1 to score first and 3/1 to score again.Danny Ings has been Southampton’s main man all season long. He is 11/2 to break the deadlock and 15/8 to score once more.

James Ward-Prowse has been the other man scoring the goals for the Saints. He is 12/1 to score first and 4/1 to score anytime.Both Christian Pulisic and Abraham to score is 3/1.Both Willian and Abraham to score is 13/2.Both Ward-Prowse and Ings to score is 16/1.Both Pierre-Emile Højbjerg and Nathan Redmond to score is 250/1. Chelsea vs Southampton: Match preview

LONDON, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 22: Willian of Chelsea celebrates after scoring his sides second goal with Cesar Azpilicueta and team mates during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea FC at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on December 22, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

A statement victory for Chelsea.On Sunday, the Blues travelled to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium as big underdogs following an underwhelming run.However, they took the lead just ten minutes in through a superb curling shot by Willian.Frank Lampard’s side dominated throughout and eventually doubled their lead on the stroke of half time.

Marcos Alonso was bizarrely fouled by Tottenham’s goalkeeper in stoppage time and, initially, Anthony Taylor gave a foul the other way.But, after VAR review, a penalty was correctly given.Willian stepped up and made it 2-0 in the fourth minute of added on time.Early in the second half, Son Heung-min was sent off and Spurs could hardly lay a glove on Chelsea with only ten-men.

So, Chelsea left comfortable 2-0 winners which was massive given that they’d only won one of their previous five league matches.Nevertheless, Frank Lampard’s side remain fourth, four points clear of fifth placed Sheffield United.They have lost at home to West Ham and Bournemouth recently but should be too strong for Southampton.Can the Saints spring a surprise?

CARDIFF, WALES – DECEMBER 08: Ralph Hasenhüttl, Manager of Southampton acknowledges the fans after the Premier League match between Cardiff City and Southampton FC at Cardiff City Stadium on December 8, 2018 in Cardiff, United Kingdom. (Photo by Stu )The Saints though travel to West London in buoyant mood.On Saturday, they visited Villa Park in the battle of two clubs both on 15 points.

Hence, it was supposed to be an evenly matches game but turned out to be anything but.A brace from Danny Ings either side of a Jack Stephens header saw Southampton 3-0 ahead after just 51 minutes.Villa did pull one back but 3-1 it finished to Ralph Hasenhüttl’s men.That’s their third win in five, all of which have come against the now currently bottom three.

Thus, Southampton are 17th, three points above the drop and only one or two points behind the four clubs above them.So, if they can get a shock win here, they would shoot up the table.Will they enjoy their third Premier League win of a month for the first time since May 2016?Chelsea team news vs Southampton

LONDON, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 09: Christian Pulisic of Chelsea celebrates after scoring his team’s second goal during the Premier League match between Chelsea FC and Crystal Palace at Stamford Bridge on November 09, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by )Despite a brilliant win at the weekend, Frank Lampard will make changes.

He picked a somewhat defensive 3-4-2-1 at Spurs but will surely reintroduce some more attacking players for this one.Kepa Arrizabalaga, as always, will be in goal.In defence, one of the centre-backs from the weekend will drop out.That is likely to be Kurt Zouma with Antonio Rüdiger continuing alongside Fikayo Tomori.At full-back, Marcos Alonso will keep his place on the left over Emerson Palmieri.

On the other side, the more attack-minded Reece James is likely to come in for club captain César Azpilicueta.In midfield, Jorginho will return alongside N’Golo Kanté as Mateo Kovačić is suspended for one match.Mason Mount will join the midfield trio with Christian Pulisic coming in out-wide.Willian will continue on the other side having scored his first Chelsea brace for 36 months on Sunday.

As always, Tammy Abraham will lead the line, looking to add to his 13 goals this season.Callum Hudson-Odoi, Pedro and Michy Batshuayi will be the attacking options on the bench if needed.This side should be too strong for Southampton but they have faltered at home recently.Southampton team news vs Chelsea