Premier League Return Fixtures Preview, Update and Latest Tips
Football fans in England have had some meagre offerings over the last few months, but all that is now set to change. With the Bundesliga, La Liga and Serie A set to get back into action, the Premier League is now also joining the list of leagues restarting and it promises to be an exciting few weeks of action as the teams play out the nine full matchdays, plus two outstanding games in hand that teams have, staggered across the coming six weeks or so.
The action begins on Wednesday evening with four teams in action that all have a game in hand on the other 16 teams in the Premier League. Aston Villa host Sheffield United in the first game of the night at 6pm, while at 8.15pm there is a potential cracker of a game as second-placed Manchester City take on a revitalised Arsenal, now under the stewardship of Pep Guardiola’s one-time assistant Mikel Arteta.
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Before we bring you our tips for the games coming up this week in the Premier League, let’s first recap how things stand in the division in the positions that matter, at the top and bottom of the table and look at the major outcomes to be decided over the coming weeks of football action.
Premier League – Where do we stand at present?
There are essentially three things that we need to discover over the remainder of the season, who will be champions (although this is mere formality), who will claim the Champions League and Europa League qualification spots for next season and lastly, which three teams will be relegated to the Championship next season.
Let’s now take a look at where we stand with regards to all three of these different races.
With Liverpool 25 points ahead of Manchester City and City able to collect a maximum of 30 more points, Liverpool just need six more points to confirm themselves as title winners, assuming of course that City win all their remaining ten games. That looks unlikely to be honest, so I would expect it to be a short space of time before The Reds are confirmed Champions this season.
Champions League & Europa League Qualification
As it stands, Liverpool are already confirmed as one Champions League qualifier next season and in truth it looks very likely that Manchester City and Leicester City will join them in that competition. Chelsea lie in fourth place currently, but they face a stern test from a host of clubs including Manchester United, Wolves, Sheffield United, Tottenham and Arsenal who will all have their eyes on that final Champions League spot.
With a Europa League place up for grabs for the FA Cup winner, plus an extra one due to Manchester City winning the League Cup, there could be as many as three Europa League spots up for grabs in the Premier League or just two and any team missing out on the Champions League would be seeking to land one of these places as a consolation. While this would be a positive for Wolves and Sheff Utd, it would represent a disappointment for Man Utd, Chelsea, Arsenal or Spurs if they only qualify for the Europa League, or a disaster if they fail to qualify for either.
A gap had appeared at the bottom of the table and it appeared as though the relegation battle was between the bottom six, starting with Brighton in 15th with 29 points and going down to Norwich at the foot of the table on 21 points. In truth, Norwich look in real danger as they are already seven points from safety and have the worst goalscoring record in the division by five goals.
Aston Villa and Bournemouth occupy the other two relegation slots at present but Watford and West Ham along with Brighton are all not out of the woods yet and I expect this race to go down to the final weekend of the season to see which of the teams will be dropping into the Championship next season.
Premier League Fixtures and Tips
Wednesday 17th June
- Aston Villa v Sheffield United (6pm)
Sheffield United are by far the form team heading into this game and with Jack Grealish’s future the matter of huge speculation, I think Chris Wilder’s men will capitalise on a lack of confidence from Villa to clinch a good win in the opening game. – Tip – Sheff Utd to win – 5/4.
- Manchester City v Arsenal (8.15pm)
A massive game at the Etihad as Mikel Arteta returns to the club since leaving his role as Pep Guardiola’s number 2 to take on the Arsenal job. Arteta has done a great job there since, but this is a big ask against the City juggernaut and I fancy the home side to claim a confident win here. Tip – Manchester City to win 3-1 – 11/1.
Friday 19th June
- Norwich City v Southampton (6pm)
The Canaries badly need a win here to close the gap on the teams above them but Southampton have a knack of picking up key results in key games, even if their form isn’t the best and I fancy the Saints to deny the Canaries here, but to only claim a point. Tip – Draw – 13/5.
- Tottenham v Manchester United (8.15pm)
A crucial match for both teams in terms of Champions League qualification, defeat for Spurs would all but rule them out of it, but a win would catapult them into real contention once again. United do have some stars back from injury though and this will be a closely fought game, but I am backing Spurs to claim a much-needed win against Mourinho’s former club. Tip – Tottenham to win – 9/5.
Saturday 20th June
- Watford v Leicester City (12.30pm)
It’s been a tough season for Watford but their form has picked up a little over the mid point of the season, however they face a Leicester side in third place and looking strong and I fancy the Foxes to earn the victory here. Tip – Leicester to win – 21/20.
- Brighton v Arsenal (3pm)
After a trip to the Etihad on Wednesday, Arsenal now head south to take on Brighton at a rare Saturday 3pm Kick off game shown live. The Gunners have been in good form recently but Brighton have proved tricky opponents for them in the past. Arsenal do draw a few too many games but I think they have the firepower to win this one. Tip – Arsenal to win – 21/10.
- West Ham v Wolves (5.30pm)
The Hammers have had a torrid season so far and in truth, I can’t see it improving any against a Wolves side I think have a real chance of becoming a regular fixture in the top half of the table over the next few years if they can keep the nucleus of this team together. Tip – Wolves to win – 23/20.
- Bournemouth v Crystal Palace (7.45pm)
Saturday night’s evening game sees relegation threatened Bournemouth taking on an improving Palace. The Cherries form has been poor apart from a couple of patches and Palace are always a tricky team to get the better of and I fancy the visitors to come away with the points here. Tip – Crystal Palace to win – 15/8.
Sunday 21st June
- Newcastle United v Sheffield United (2pm)
Two teams for whom defending well is the foundation of their strategy. As such, I can’t see too many goals being scored in this one and in truth, I feel a 0-0 draw is probably the most likely outcome, so that is my choice of bet here. Tip – 0-0 draw – 13/2.
- Aston Villa v Chelsea (4.15pm)
Aston Villa’s form heading into this game isn’t great and I thnk having played Wednesday night fatigue could be a factor here for players who have not played for several months. All factors seem to point to a Chelsea win here and I can’t argue against that. Tip – Chelsea to win – 8/15.
- Everton v Liverpool (7pm)
Everton will be hoping to deny Liverpool three points and delay their title celebrations and the Blues have looked better under Carlo Ancelotti, but I feel the lack of home crowd will really count against them here and I am backing Liverpool to come away with the win. Tip – Liverpool to win 2-1 – 8/1.
Monday 22nd June
- Manchester City v Burnley (8pm)
The final game of the weekend sees Manchester City at home once again, this time against a Burnley side who have been in better form of late, however this is a huge ask for Sean Dyche’s men and I expect City to make it six points from six from their first two games back here. Tip – Man City to win 3-0 – 7/1.
*All odds shown were correct with bet365 Sport as of 9.50am on Tuesday 16th June 2020.