By Preye Campbell
The weekend is on, and so is the action in the English Premier League.
The most-watched league in the world rarely disappoints in giving out that footballing feeling, and with some high-profile games mapped out for Matchday 3, we can be sure that no moment with the TV this weekend will be considered a waste.
Four interesting clashes are bound to come our way in the next three days and in the anticipation of things, they should not be missed.
Liverpool Vs Arsenal
Technically not a weekend game, but the weight of both teams rightly makes it a big match feature and this particular contest at Anfield headlines Matchday three’s activities.
Mikel Arteta and his Arsenal team will play in Merseyside on Monday evening as they seek to make it three victories in three games against the reigning champions. Both teams have picked up maximum points in the 2020/21 season and Arsenal are a place above Liverpool in third on goals difference only.
For the Gunners, this will be the first major test if the season and for a lot of people, their season starts now. Liverpool on the other hand faced a tough opponent in Chelsea last week and ran out 2-0 winners. The Reds are still fresh from a historic Premier League triumph and should be going into this game as the favourites.
Besides, they have an impressive record against the 2004 champions at Anfield, boasting four consecutive wins in their last four games on the ground and have only lost once against Arsenal- their last game to date- in their last 10 Premier League games.
Should the Gunners win, they will be looking at back-to-back league games won against Liverpool for the first time since September 2012.
Brighton Vs Manchester United
Manchester United will get another opportunity to kickstart their 2020/21 campaign on the positive at the Falmer Stadium in the first game of the weekend, after a dismal opening game loss to Crystal Palace at Old Trafford last week.
Brighton currently sit eight on the league table after picking three points in two games. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side should not think of this as an easy game, however, as Brighton have won three of their last four home games against United- though, United won 3-0 at the spot last season.
United have not lost both of their opening two games in a Premier League season since the 1992-1993 season, and they will be hoping to keep the record as it is later at 12:30 pm today.
West Brom Vs Chelsea
Chelsea seem to have finally unlocked the potential of new signing Kai Havertz as the attacker did shine in midweek, and a similarly inspired performance will be expected today against bottom-placed West Bromwich Albion.
The newly-promoted Baggies have lost all games in the new season and could be making it three against a Chelsea side that lost 2-0 to Liverpool last week and currently sit in 11th place.
The records do not favour West Brom, as they have lost more Premier League games against Chelsea (18) than they have done against any other opponent and have lost in their last four encounters without scoring a goal.
Frank Lampard’s side will be targeting all three points this weekend and will be hoping to do so without conceding, as the Blues are the face of a goalkeeping crisis. Chelsea have kept just one clean sheet in their last 20 Premier League away games under Lampard; the 2-0 win against Tottenham Hotspur in December 2019.
The game may come in too soon for new signing Edouard Mendy, who arrived midweek and Kepa Arrizabalaga should be expected to stay between the sticks once more.
Manchester City Vs Leicester City
Early league leaders Leicester City have a stern test coming their way this weekend, as they face Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City on Sunday.
Brendan Rodgers’ side sit at the summit after collecting six points from two games this season and scoring 7 goals in the process.
They have something to prove against the 2019 champions though, as City have won six of the last seven games against Leicester, losing once in December 2018.
And since beating City 3-1 at home in that famous title triumph in 2015/16, Leicester have lost every other league game played at the Etihad since then.
City have never lost any of their first home game of a new season in the last 25 seasons now and will fancy their chances against the Foxes.