Midweek Premier League special. Can you beat the panel?
Never let it be said that we at Reuters Soccer Blog shirk a challenge. Our attempts at score prediction on the opening weekend produced results that were modest at best but never fear, we’re straight back in for another shot (that’ll doubtless be blasted over the bar).
Once again, please send in your own predictions … they can scarcely be any worse than ours, and if you do especially well, we’ll gladly let you lord it over us here on the blog.
The six matches this week are as follows:
Sunderland v Chelsea: After Chelsea’s scare in the opening game of the season, and Sunderland’s positive start, the predictions for this are a little more circumspect. Mitch Phillips: 1-1; Owen Wyatt: 0-2; Patrick Johnston: 1-1; Mike Collett: 0-2; Paul Radford: 0-2; Kevin Fylan: 1-0. Late entries: Miles Evans: 0-2; Martyn Herman: 0-2.
Wigan Athletic v Wolverhampton Wanderers: What a result from Wigan on Saturday, eh? Hardly anyone expected them to beat Aston Villa, but I suppose when you consider how badly Villa finished last season it wasn’t such a shocking result. Wigan to make it maximum points from two? Mitch Phillips: 2-0; Owen Wyatt: 4-4; Patrick Johnston: 3-0; Mike Collett: 1-1; Paul Radford: 1-0; Kevin Fylan: 1-0. Late entries: Miles Evans: 0-1; Martyn Herman: 2-1.
Birmingham City v Portsmouth: Birmingham came close to getting something from Old Trafford on Sunday so that should have done something for their self-belief. Maybe. Another bad day for Portsmouth? Mitch Phillips: 1-0; Owen Wyatt: 2-0; Patrick Johnston: 2-1; Mike Collett: 2-1; Paul Radford: 0-0; Kevin Fylan: 0-0. Late entries: Miles Evans: 2-2; Martyn Herman: 4-1.
Burnley v Manchester United: It was a tough start for Burnley at Stoke and this is not going to be a cakewalk either, is it? Mitch Phillips: 0-0; Owen Wyatt: 0-3; Patrick Johnston: 1-2; Mike Collett: 0-3; Paul Radford: 0-1; Kevin Fylan: 0-2. Late entries: Miles Evans: 1-3; Martyn Herman: 0-3.
Hull City v Tottenham Hotspur: Spurs made a fantastic start to the season but with a little luck Hull might have pulled off just as big a surprise by taking something off Chelsea. It’s got to be Spurs, though, hasn’t it? Mitch Phillips: 1-0; Owen Wyatt: 0-2; Patrick Johnston: 1-1; Mike Collett: 0-2; Paul Radford: 1-2; Kevin Fylan: 1-1. Late entries: Miles Evans: 2-0; Martyn Herman: 1-3.
Liverpool v Stoke City: The temptation to write off Liverpool has been too much for a lot of people after what was, admittedly, a shoddy performance against Spurs. Will Gerrard drop back to midfield? Will Voronin start up front? Will Xabi Alonso’s reputation grow any further in his absence? Mitch Phillips: 1-0; Owen Wyatt: 3-1; Patrick Johnston: 0-0; Mike Collett: 2-1; Paul Radford: 3-1; Kevin Fylan: 0-0. Late entries: Miles Evans: 2-0; Martyn Herman: 2-0.
So, don’t be shy… Give us your predictions in the comments, and tell us where we’ve gone wrong.
PHOTO: Manchester United’s Michael Owen reacts after missing a chance against Birmingham City at Old Trafford, northern England August 16, 2009. REUTERS/Darren Staples