By Niall Clarke
- Five questions on our minds ahead of match-week 11 of the Premier League season
- Predictions for all 10 of the weekend’s games.
The North London derby headlines week 11 of the Premier League season, and here are five burning questions heading into the weekend’s football.
Will Arsenal hand Tottenham their first defeat?
Undoubtedly the game of the weekend will come at the Emirates as Arsenal host Tottenham in a North London derby that has huge implications at the top of the Premier League. The Gunners are one of the three sides level on points at the summit whilst three straight draws have left Spurs hanging three points behind.
One of the bigger questions surrounding this match is whether or not Mauricio Pochettino will risk playing striker Harry Kane. The Englishman has been out with injury and as a result Spurs have struggled going forward. They are still the only unbeaten side in the league though, and have proven very difficult to break down.
That is the task facing Arsene Wenger on Sunday. Can they inflict the first defeat on Spurs this season? The Gunners are in excellent form with Mesut Ozil being the key to their success. There will be pressure on Arsenal to perform with Liverpool and Manchester City possibly going clear of them should they slip up, and let us not forget about Chelsea and Spurs.
Will Manchester City build on their surge of momentum?
They went six games without a win before a 4-0 victory away at West Brom last weekend, now Pep Guardiola and his side head into the weekend full of confidence after a 3-1 win at Barcelona.
The Citizens have a banker against Middlesbrough at home on Saturday, but as we know, anything can happen in the Premier League. You would expect City to win this game, but what is just as important is the manner in which they do so. The international break is looming and it is important for teams to go into it with momentum, and this is a match in which they can send a message to their title rivals.
City also play before their rivals this weekend, and could pile some extra pressure on them with a convincing victory.
Can Chelsea keep their perfect record with three at the back?
After a poor run of form, Antonio Conte decided to implement the three at the back formation, and since Chelsea have looked like a different side. The error-prone David Luiz has been very consistent since the switch, the form of Victor Moses has been a blessing and it is also bringing the best out of Eden Hazard.
Four wins without conceding a goal and all of a sudden Chelsea look like contenders again. Saturday afternoon they welcome Everton to Stamford Bridge in a game that will no doubt test their new formation. The Toffees have looked solid this season and look like European place contenders once again. With Romelu Lukaku they have a big threat up top and they have the ability to end Chelsea’s winning streak.
Will Chelsea remain perfect with three at the back and keep their title chances very much alive? Or will Everton spring a surprise and deal a big blow?
Can Sunderland and Hull stop their rot?
If the papers are to be believed this is a do or die match for Sunderland boss David Moyes. After no wins in the opening 10 matches, the Scot could face the sack if his side fail to beat Bournemouth on Saturday. The stakes are big not only for Moyes, but for the survival chances of the Black Cats.
The same could be said for Hull City. Six straight defeats have left the Tigers in the drop zone, and with mounting troubles on and off the pitch, it could be a long season for Mike Phelan. Hull will look to bring more positivity to their ranks by ending their losing streak at home to Southampton on Sunday.
It could be a momentum changing weekend for Sunderland and Hull. We saw what a first win did for Stoke City, can it work with Sunderland?
What else is happening?
Burnley host Crystal Palace and West Ham host Stoke in the other 3pm kick offs on Saturday. These are games that could have plenty of positional bearing around the middle of the league come May.
It is most certainly a super Sunday with five games taking place that affect both ends of the table. After the North London derby Liverpool will host Watford as they attempt to better their title rivals who would have already played at this point.
Swansea will look to exploit the vulnerability of Manchester United in the 4pm kick off as they welcome the Red Devils to the Liberty Stadium. To end the weekend’s action, Leicester City host West Brom.
Bournemouth 2-0 Sunderland
Burnley 1-0 Crystal Palace
Man City 3-0 Middlesbrough
West Ham 1-1 Stoke City
Chelsea 2-0 Everton
Arsenal 2-1 Tottenham
Hull 1-2 Southampton
Liverpool 2-0 Watford
Swansea 1-1 Man United
Leicester 1-0 West Brom
The Premier League continues on the weekend of the 5th-6th November
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