Complete Preview of Every Premier League Match This Weekend
Premier League Previews and Predictions
After last weekend's FA Cup matches and this week's Champions League encounters, it is easy for fans to forget about the ongoing drama of the Premier League.
Thankfully for those who have been yearning for the action to resume in England's top competition, the league picks up this weekend where it left off two weekends ago.
With Manchester United are closing in on the title, this weekend's matches could all but end the pursuit for the league's top prize.
However, there is still quite a bit to play for.
Manchester City, Chelsea and Tottenham currently sit in the other three top-four spots, but their holds on their respective spots are far from secure. After all, Arsenal sits just four points behind Spurs, while Everton are just two points behind the Gunners.
With each club having just 12 matches to play in their campaign, the right results could throw the race for the Champions League wide open.
Further, the relegation battle still rages on.
For new fans, a finish in the bottom three of the league leads to a club's relegation, as they are sent down to the Championship (England's version of Major League Baseball's AAA) while three teams from the Championship take their place.
With so much money on the line, the future of these clubs is on the line, adding to the drama of the final few matches of the season on the lower end of the Premier League.
So what should one expect from the next few day's Premier League action?
Here is a complete preview for this weekend's action.
Fulham vs. Stoke City
The action kicks off with Fulham and Stoke City doing battle at Fulham's Craven Cottage Saturday.
Both clubs are safely in the middle of the table, six and ten points clear of the relegation zone and 15 and 11 points off of the Champions League spots, respectively.
Stoke City have a fairly weak away record this season and have struggled over the past few seasons, while Fulham has a fairly poor home record.
Player to watch: Dimitar Berbatov is Fulham's top scorer this season and could hold the key to this match.
Prediction: It's tough to see many goals in this one, and Stoke will probably know that. Expect them to set up to play strong defense, but Berbatov could just get the winner.
Fulham 1-0 Stoke City
Reading vs. Wigan
Saturday's match between Reading and Wigan at Reading's Madejski Stadium is a huge one in both clubs' run-ins.
Reading and Wigan both sit in the relegation zone, with Reading one point and Wigan three points off of Aston Villa and safety.
A win could be vital for both sides here, while a loss could put them in a hole they cannot climb out of.
Player to watch: With Reading sporting a fairly strong goal record at their home, Wigan keeper Ali Al-Habsi could be a huge figure in this match.
Prediction: This is a tough one, but it's going to be tough for Wigan to hold on for a result. Still, Wigan have the experience of fighting out of the drop zone over the past few seasons.
Reading 1-1 Wigan
West Brom vs. Sunderland
Saturday's match between West Bromwich Albion and Sunderland is an encounter between two mid-table clubs that look safe in their spots.
If West Brom is to have any hope of qualifying for the Champions League, they must make their move very soon. Hence, they are in desperate need of a win here.
Meanwhile, Sunderland's defense has been playing quite well, though not quite as well on the road.
Player to watch: West Brom manager Steve Clarke faces quite a dilemma in naming his side, with striker Peter Odemwingie possibly making his return to West Brom after his ridiculous attempt to leave in January. Odemwingie could be a key player for the Baggies if he makes his return.
Prediction: West Brom should be able to take this one fairly easily.
West Brom 2-0 Sunderland
Norwich vs. Everton
The match between Norwich and Everton at Norwich's Carrow Road could be a must-win for Everton.
While Norwich has a cushion between them and the drop zone, Everton are in need of a few big wins if they hope to achieve Champions League football.
Hence, win at Norwich is almost a must-win for the Toffees.
However, Norwich has a strong home record to boast.
Player to watch: Everton's Marouane Fellaini has been the top player for the Toffees this season. The Belgian has the ability to single-handedly win this match for his side.
Prediction: Norwich has been clutch at Carrow Road this season, but Everton clearly need this one more. Still, it's hard to look past Norwich's fine home form this season.
Norwich 1-1 Everton
QPR vs. Manchester United
It's last versus first when Queens Park Rangers take on Manchester United at QPR's Loftus Road Saturday.
QPR are desperately in need of a huge win here, as they flounder further and further away from safety.
However, Manchester United are looking to wrap up the title race with a few more victories, giving the Red Devils something to play for.
Player to watch: QPR goalkeeper Julio Cesar will obviously have to have a huge match as he goes up against United's potent attack. Should the Brazilian be even slightly off his game, United will surely rip QPR apart.
Prediction: As much as QPR need this victory, it's tough to see this one going any way but for United.
QPR 1-3 Manchester United
Arsenal vs. Aston Villa
After a terrible week that saw them crash out of the FA Cup to a Championship side and suffer an embarrassing loss in the Champions League, Arsenal face a very important match for their league campaign when they go up against Aston Villa at their Emirates Stadium on Saturday.
The Gunners will be looking for a big victory here to push their way back toward the top four.
Meanwhile, Villa are just on the cusp of the relegation zone, so a victory will go a long way toward avoiding relegation.
Player to watch: Villa's Christian Benteke has been one of the breakout stars of this Premier League season. The 24-year-old striker will look to add to his impressive stats against a rattled Arsenal defense Saturday.
Prediction: With the side so up-and-down, it's hard to predict Arsenal matches this season. However, after a few awful and demoralizing results, one can expect a tough go of it. Can Villa take advantage?
Arsenal 1-1 Aston Villa
Manchester City vs. Chelsea
The match of the weekend is definitely Manchester City's tussle with Chelsea at City's Etihad Stadium on Sunday.
City righted the ship last week with a fantastic performance in the FA Cup, while Chelsea did well in their FA Cup and Europa League matches.
City need a win here if they are to have any hope of chasing down United for the title, which Chelsea can do with a result to solidify their place in the top four.
However, Manchester City has just one win loss at home over the past two Premier League seasons.
Player to watch: Manchester City's Sergio Aguero has that "it" factor to turn a match completely on its head. The Argentine proved in last week's FA Cup match that he can take City out of their slump.
Prediction: As tough of a time as City has been having in the Premier League as of late, a trip home to the Etihad Stadium could be just the tonic.
Chelsea will be tough to beat, though, as they have lots of ability at their disposal.
Manchester City 2-2 Chelsea
Newcastle vs. Southampton
While not the juiciest tie on paper, Sunday's match between Newcastle and Southampton has massive implications to the relegation battle.
Both clubs sit on 27 points, just four points clear of the final three spots and relegation.
The winner of this one will move further clear of the drop zone and to safety, while the loser will be left to fight for their survival.
Thankfully for Newcastle, they have a stellar home record while Southampton have been abysmal away from home.
Player to watch: Newcastle's Moussa Sissoko is set to make just his fourth start for his new club Sunday, yet has already made a huge impression.
The Frenchman has played incredibly in his first three, including a man-of-the-match performance against Chelsea in the Magpies' 3-2 victory.
Can Sissoko keep it up?
Prediction: Newcastle should take this one at home, but Southampton have been a tricky side this season and could make it difficult.
Newcastle 2-1 Southampton
West Ham vs. Tottenham
The final match of the weekend comes on Monday, as surging Tottenham takes on West Ham at their Upton Park.
While the match is a derby between two fierce London rivals, Spurs come in with much more riding on the match.
Sitting in fourth, Tottenham have a small hold on the top four and the Champions League spot that comes with it.
Meanwhile, West Ham are in a comfortable and safe 11th place, with little hope of rising to the top or fear of falling to the bottom.
West Ham will obviously still want to win, but Spurs need this one more.
Player to watch: Tottenham's Gareth Bale has been lighting the Premier League on fire over the past few weeks, scoring four goals in his past three matches.
It will be interesting to see if the Welshman can continue his incredible run.
Prediction: As good as West Ham have been at home this season, Tottenham need this one more.
As simple as that sounds, it may just inspire Bale to produce another moment of magic or two.
West Ham 1-2 Tottenham
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