Chelsea V Hull City
Chelsea are essentially the same team they were last term, with Zhirkov being the only significant transfer.
In new manager Ancelotti they have added European pizzazz, but his lack of premiership experience may be a thorn in Chelsea title hopes.
Before Christmas Hull looked like a team with a point to prove, but after Browns Man City debacle, Hulls mentality switched to free fall – have they lost this losing mentality? – Possibly not. The additions of Altidore and Hunt may not be enough to keep them up this season.
This game will be all Chelsea and i can see a comprehensive victory – 4-0
Aston Villa V Wigan
Villa will sorely miss Barry and the retired Larsen this term, but Wigan have bigger problems, having lost key players; Valencia, Palacios, Cattermole and Zaki.
Both teams will struggle to improve on their 6th and 11th placed positions last season, but in term of this match, Villa still have a good side, whereas Martinez’s men will need time to gel
The home side will win it: 3-1.
Blackburn V Man City
Man City have stole the show in England this summer, having bolstered their squad with an array of world class talent.
Sam is a shrewd businessman and has brought in those needed to strengthen the side; including new striker Nikola Kalinic who has been tipped for great things. Sam has made Rovers a tough, strong and athletic team that will be hard to break down, whereas Hughes will need time to find the right formation for his stars.
An entertaining 2-2 draw.
Bolton V Sunderland
Bolton are a team that typify mid table mediocrity. Solid and hard to beat, yet inconstant and sometimes lacking creativity. Their signings say a thousand words.
Sunderland look really good. Bruce has done fantastically well to bring in Lorik Cana and Lee Cattermole – to strengthen the midfield, and Fraizer Campbell and Darren Bent – to bolster their attack.
Sunderland may need time to gel, but I can see Bruce opening the season with a 1-0 victory.
Everton V Arsenal
Moyes has yet again released a statement to the press, that he is worried about the lack of signings. He needs reinforcements, as I can’t see Everton riding their luck like they did last year. (with no strikers and a bench full of teenagers).
Arsenal going forward are a team to be feared. Arshavin, Van Persie and a fit Eduardo and Rosicky will be very dangerous. But still no Viera/ Adams type players to counter balance this flair.
I can see a 1-1 draw.
Portsmouth V Fulham
Portsmouth are in big trouble. They have lost everyone and are down to their bare bones, they may even struggle to fill the subs bench without delving into the reserve side.
Fulham are on a high after last year’s triumphant 8th placed finish (Their best ever.) and they will be victorious today – 0-2.
Stoke V Burnley
Stoke where brilliant last season but will they suffer from second season syndrome? – time will tell.
Burnley should really give the Premiership a go, but I really can’t see them avoiding relegation or defeat today. 2-1 Stoke.
Wolves V West Ham
McCarthy made a pigs ear of promotion with Sunderland, but he will be more than prepared this time around.
It’s all about where the goals are coming from in the bottom, 8 and Wolves have this in Kightly, Doyle and especially Ebanks-Blake.
Zola has made West Ham an attractive side on a tight budget, and did a fine job of restoring hope to a club looking down the barrel of a gun – let’s hope he can build on this in the coming months.
Thrilling 3-3 draw. (Why not?) Realistically 1-1
Let’s hope I beat lawro! (Pictures from BBC)