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Dan’s FA Cup and EPL Predictions this weekend – Can Arsenal be trusted defensively against City?

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Saturday

Dan’s FA Cup Predictions

Man City 3- 0 Arsenal
One of the many interesting things Arteta said after the Liverpool game was, he worried his team wouldn’t have the self-belief to recover after conceding first, a curious admission when you’re about to play Man City.

His biggest task is getting the squad to believe that they can win this tie. It’s worth remembering City have lost the same amount of times in the League, showing as good as they are, you can get at their defence.

Yet still some teams (like Newcastle in the last round) pay them too much respect by parking the bus. It would be a mistake to think just because our back 4 held on against the champions in midweek they should have the same tactics here.

A lot been made of the last time we won the Cup, our route was City in the semi-final, then Chelsea in the Final. Yet back then we had a Sanchez, Ramsey, an inform Ozil you could trust in a big game. I’m not even sure we can rely on Auba to be that person.

To win we have to produce a level of performance we haven’t produced this campaign. You just can’t trust us defensively.

Premiership

Norwich 1-2 Burnley

Norwich are relegated so there is no reason for them not to give this a go. If both teams play with freedom and ‘it’s you play, we play’, Burnley should win. The away side have lost only once since the lockdown and if they win would still have an outside chance of Europe.

Sunday

Cherries 3-2 Saints

The Cherries showed us what tactics we should implement against Man City. They made enough chances at the Etihad to get a result, and if they play like that in their last two games, they can still stay up. Eddie Howe has done great man management to keep his players believing, but he must be wondering where was this spirit in the home defeats to Palace and Newcastle?

Leicester 1-1 Spurs
A crucial game in terms of both side’s European aspirations. Dropped points for Leicester would hand the initiative in the race for the top 4 over to Chelsea and Man Utd. Why do you think Rodgers is suddenly reminding everyone he’s achieved the Foxes second greatest finish ever? If Spurs don’t win, we could still overtake them. Even when they win, I haven’t been convinced by either team since their return to action. 1-1 won’t suit either team.

Dan’s FA Cup Prediction for Sunday

Man United 1- Chelsea 0

Out of the 4 semi-finalists, there are 3 managers looking to win the same Cup they did as players. Both have match winners and individuals in form so it might come down to who is braver, as I can see this being quite a cagey tie. It could go either way, but we know Chelsea are capable of an off day while United haven’t lost in 19 games.

Monday

Premiership

Brighton 1-0 Newcastle
Brighton needed One more point to guarantee safety but the draw at Southampton should be enough and is a result which means they can relax more here. I should point out though, it took Chris Hughton a similar amount of games last season to confirm their topflight status and he was sacked. Maybe that proves he did a better job than he was credited for?

Sheffield United 1-1 Everton

Chris Wilder was very critical of his side at Leicester. Which tells you everything about the man. He’s carried them from League One and could easily be boasting about this being their first season back in Prem and how his squad have defied expectations. Yet he had standards and won’t tolerate anything else but 100 percent, especially with Europe at stake.

Arsenal need a favour off Everton. That’s how far we have fallen. Did you ever think with two games to go we would be hoping Sheffield United trip up so we could possibly squeeze into the top 7?

Wolves 2-0 Palace

Wolves win they go on 59 points. That’s the maximum total we can get in our final 2 games. They are playing like a squad who maybe realise they blew an opportunity to be in the top 4, but I keep saying it…. you want to play Palace – the Eagles are on the beach.

Dan Smith



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