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Spurs’ Micky van de Ven could be shrewd defensive signing

Impressive form: Tottenham summer signing Micky van de Ven has made a strong start to life in English football

The English top flight closes its first quarter with some fascinating storylines evolving, most notably Tottenham making the best start under a new manager in the Premier League era.

Spurs and North London rivals Arsenal are the only remaining unbeaten clubs after nine matches.

The Fantasy landscape is equally as interesting. Sticking with Ange Postecoglou’s Tottenham, summer signing Micky van de Ven has made an impressive start to life in English football, and at £4.6 million is a strong pick with only 3.6 per cent of managers worldwide currently owning the Dutch centre-back.


Crystal Palace v Tottenham Hotspur


Crystal Palace are going through a mini slump of one win from five league games, but remain in the comfort of mid-table. Dean Henderson, James Tomkins, Eberechi Eze, Michael Olise and Jeffrey Schlupp are out with various injuries this weekend for the Eagles.

Spurs cruised past Fulham on Monday night to maintain their record of scoring at least twice in every game thus far.

Alfie Whiteman, Ivan Perisic, Ryan Sessegnon and Manor Solomon are injured, while Ben Davies and Rodrigo Bentancur are doubtful this week.

Tottenham dominate this rivalry between the clubs with 17 wins in 28 meetings.

Prediction: 0-3


Chelsea v Brentford


Chelsea are unbeaten in their last three league games, scoring eight goals.

Trevoh Chalobah, Ben Chilwell, Wesley Fofana, Carney Chukwuemeka, Romeo Lavia, Armando Broja and Christopher Nkunku are out through injury this week.

Brentford stemmed a winless run of six matches with their home victory over Burnley last time out.

Rico Henry, Shandon Baptiste, Mikkel Damsgaard, Josh Dasilva, Keane Lewis-Potter and Kevin Schade are out to injury this match for the Bees.

Neither side has won at home across four total meetings, with Brentford edging the overall tally with two road wins to Chelsea’s one.

Prediction: 2-1

Arsenal v Sheffield United


Arsenal continued their best league start since the “invincible” campaign of 2003/04 by coming from two goals down to draw at Chelsea.

Jurrien Timber is out with a knee injury, while Gabriel Jesus and Thomas Partey are doubtful this week for the Gunners.

Sheffield United could be on course for the worst ever Premier League points tally after the home defeat to Manchester United.

Anel Ahmedhodzic, Chris Basham, John Egan, Max Lowe, Rhys Norrington-Davies and Tom Davies are out with injury this match, while Daniel Jebbison, William Osula, George Baldock, Adam Davies and Oli McBurnie are doubtful.

The Gunners hold the advantage in this series with four wins to Sheffield’s two through ten encounters.

Prediction: 4-0

Bournemouth v Burnley


Bournemouth still await that first win under new coach Andoni Iraola.

Ryan Fredericks, Emiliano Marcondes, and Tyler Adams are out injured and Lewis Cook is suspended this weekend for the Cherries.

Burnley are getting strongly exposed on the transition as a result of their expansive style.

Jordan Beyer, Hjalmar Ekdal and Michael Obafemi are out injured, while Manuel Benson and Johann Berg Gudmundsson are doubtful this match.

The Clarets have won six of eight contests with the Cherries.

Prediction: 2-2

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Newcastle United


Wolves are unbeaten in four matches after losing four of their first five this campaign.

Hugo Bueno and Jean-Ricner Bellegarde are doubtful this weekend.

Newcastle United have scored the most goals through nine games thus far with 24.

Sven Botman, Harvey Barnes, and Lewis Miley are out through injury, while Emil Krafth and Joe Willock are doubtful this weekend.

The Magpies edge this rivalry with four wins to Wolves’ two, though these sides have drawn ten of their 16 Premier League meetings.

Prediction: 1-1


West Ham United v Everton


West Ham are holding their own with a rejuvenated squad having clinched three consecutive European appearances for the first time in club history.

Emerson Palmieri is suspended owing to yellow card accumulation, while Aaron Cresswell and Ben Johnson are doubtful thanks to lack of fitness this week.

Everton have had a tough start given five of their six defeats have been by two or fewer goals.

Ashley Young is suspended as a result of a second bookable challenge in the Merseyside derby loss at Liverpool; Andre Gomes and Dele Alli are out to calf and hip injuries; while Seamus Coleman is doubtful owing to lack of fitness.

The Toffees dominate this rivalry with 28 wins from their 54 overall encounters.

Prediction: 2-2

Aston Villa v Luton Town


Aston Villa are making a statement start through nine matches, accruing their highest points tally at this stage, all of this with a plethora of absentees.

Alex Moreno, Tyrone Mings, Emiliano Buendia, Philippe Coutinho and Jacob Ramsey miss out this weekend through injury.

Luton are maintaining a decent level for their first foray into the Premier League, though sit just one point above the bottom three after nine games.

Mads Juel Andersen, Amari Bell, Dan Potts, Albert Sambi Lokonga, and Jordan Clark are out through injury for the Hatters, while Reece Burke is doubtful this weekend.

These clubs have never met in the Premier League era.

Prediction: 2-1

Brighton & Hove Albion v Fulham


Brighton are having no major challenges navigating their first European season in club history.

Pervis Estupinan, Tariq Lamptey and Julio Enciso are out through injury for the Seagulls this weekend, while Solly March, Jakub Moder and Danny Welbeck are doubtful.

Fulham’s goalscoring woes have cost them four defeats so far this campaign.

Issa Diop, Tosin Adarabioyo, Kenny Tete and Adama Traore are out to injury this week for the Cottagers, while Matthew Dibley-Dias is doubtful.

Fulham are unbeaten against Brighton in six meetings, winning three and drawing three.

Prediction: 2-0

Liverpool v Nottingham Forest


Liverpool are pushing stride-for-stride with the league challengers in a strong start this campaign.

Curtis Jones is suspended after being sent off at Tottenham a few weeks back; Andrew Robertson, Stefan Bajcetic, Thiago Alcantara and Ben Doak are out to injury or lack of fitness; while Cody Gakpo is doubtful to lack of fitness.

Nottingham Forest are winless in their last five games (four of which were draws), yet have already beaten Chelsea and narrowly lost to Arsenal on the road already this season.

Callum Hudson-Odoi, Taiwo Awoniyi, and Divock Origi are out through injury, while Nuno Tavares, Felipe, Danilo and Gonzalo Montiel are doubtful this week.

The Reds edge this series with five wins to Forest’s three from 12 meetings.

Prediction: 3-1

Manchester United v Manchester City


Manchester United have won three in a row in all competitions, but still languish in eighth position after nine league games.

Tyrell Malacia, Lisandro Martinez, Luke Shaw, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Amad Diallo are out due to injury for the Red Devils, while Casemiro and Kobbie Mainoo are doubtful.

Manchester City are firm favourites to become the first club to win four league titles in a row.

Manuel Akanji is suspended after being sent off against Brighton, while Kevin de Bruyne is out with a hamstring injury for the derby.

This is the 53rd Manchester derby in the Premier League, and United edge the history with 25 wins to City’s 18.

Prediction: 2-1

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Published October 27, 2023 at 7:57 am (Updated October 27, 2023 at 7:28 am)

Spurs’ Micky van de Ven could be shrewd defensive signing

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