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Week 18 Predictions 26/12/11 + A Christmas Carol (Football Version)

Saturday 24th December 2011
We are half way through the Christmas period and the table is still as jammed as ever. I expect gaps to start forming after this round of fixtures and in my opinion this is the best set of games we have had all season. They may not be the glamour ties that usually get people excited but there is a point of interest in every game. Make sure you get your family obligations out of the way on Christmas Day because you really don't want to miss these games. It's what Christmas is all about.

Chelsea 2-0 Fulham

Was a draw at Spurs bad for Chelsea? No. Was it bad for a team trying to win the title? Yes. Chelsea have to continue beating the teams around them if they stand any chance of catching the top two. Fulham were taken apart by United in the last game and I don't expect them to give Chelsea too many problems either. As a derby game, Chelsea really can't afford to drop points here, especially as they haven't won since they played City.

Bolton 1-2 Newcastle

Big game. Big, big game. Bolton had to beat Blackburn and they did, just. It got them off the bottom for Christmas but if they lose to Newcastle then it will be meaningless. I said how these few games are damage limitation for Newcastle so a defeat at home to West Brom was not ideal for them. Taking into account their injury problems, I still think they will beat Bolton. At the moment, it seems like Demba Ba will score no matter what so that is going to be a big blow for the Magpies when it is time for the African Cup of Nations.

Liverpool 1-0 Blackburn

I'm starting to feel sorry for Steve Kean. He got the job under such ridiculous circumstances that it would have taken European football for the fans to ever be on his side. I see why the fans boo but it isn't helping. However, I don't see how he can still be in a job after losing such a massive game against Bolton. He tried, he failed, he sould move on. This could be his last game in charge and I expect Liverpool to edge it. On the Suarez issue, the amount of support he is recieving his insane. I'm not saying the club should condemn him but they should certainly distance themselves from the racism case completely. Just accept the ban and move on.

Man Utd 3-1 Wigan

Bravo, Wigan. To get three draws in a row would be a Christmas miracle. They won't but what they have achieved in the last two games is still worth taking note. Wigan are not pushovers. I think they will give United a bit of a game but the home sides strength will be too much for Martinez's team. If all my predictions had been correct so far, Wigan would have been bottom at Christmas. Now I'm hoping they stay up, for possibly the first time ever.

Sunderland 2-1 Everton

Another really intriguing game. Everton have been getting some very dull results in the last few games (results that have won me money but still dull) but they have moved away from the relegation zone. I expected QPR-Sunderland to be a boring match and I was spectacularly wrong. A home win could move them up near Everton and I think the O'Neill factor should see them to three points.

West Brom 1-3 Man City

West Brom are finally showing the kind of form that I predicted they would have at the start of the season. They could cause the league leaders a few problems, not enough to get a point but enough to show they are not just there to make up the numbers.

Stoke 2-1 Aston Villa

I am very happy to see Villa finally slide down the table. Not because I am a Birmingham fan but because I have been saying they are a poor team for most of the season and their position in the table is starting to back that up. Stoke were awful against City but they need to put that behind them and get a result here which is something they are more than capable of.

Arsenal 3-0 Wolves

This will be the most one-sided game of this round. No part of me can see Wolves putting in a performance that will get a point. This would be a great chance for Van Persie to fill his boots and break the record for most goals in calender year.

Swansea 1-0 QPR

Unlike the last game, this will be incredibly close. I don't see these two drawing so the hard part was choosing which side to win. I went with Swansea mostly just becuase they are the home side. I also thought QPR might be a bit knocked by the way in which they lost to Sunderland so they probably won't have their best game so far.

Norwich 2-2 Tottenham

This should be great to watch. The loss of Van der Vaart has made me think that Norwich will be able to get a draw in what should be a free flowing attacking game. The fact that Spurs can be disappointed with a draw against Chelsea shows how far they have come. I imagine they will be disappointed here as well.

After a less than impressive draw against my brother last time, there are two Christmas themed guests today. In my quest for a guest, I was visited by the Ghost of Football Past and the Ghost of Football Yet to Come. They gave me the scores for these games if they had been played ten years ago and ten years in the future repsectively. The Ghost of Football Present just told me that every single one of my predictions was spot on so no need to include him. So just for fun here is what they told me (I swear this all happened, I certainly didn't do these myself):

Chelsea - Fulham. GFP 3-2  GFYC  3-1

Bolton - Newcastle. GFP 0-4   GFYC 0-2

Liverpool - Blackburn. GFP 4-3   GFYC  3-0

United - Wigan. GFP 5-0   GFYC 2-0

Sunderland - Everton. GFP 1-0   GFYC 3-1

West Brom - City. GFP 1-2  GFYC 0-4

Stoke - Villa. GFP 1-3   GFYC 2-2

Arsenal - Wolves. GFP 4-1  GFYC 2-1

Swansea - QPR. GFP 0-2   GFYC 1-3

Norwich - Spurs. GFP 1-3  GFYC 1-2

I will be back just before the New Year for the final set of games over this period. I hope you have enjoyed it so far and also hope that my predictions have added to the Christmas spirit. Merry Christmas.


Oliver Friend
23 year old Psychology graduate from The University of Hull. Massive England fan and supporter of Birmingham City at club level. Currently spending a lot of time going to watch North Ferriby United in the Conference North. Also try to keep up with the major European leagues. Follow on Twitter: @ole1208

Total articles: 35

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