Premier League Week 4 Predictions: Sides Set to Slip Up This Weekend
As is only natural in the world of Premier League football, pundits constantly search for not only the best of the league, but relish finding the worst as well.
After the international break, the English top flight is set to make its return, but not every side has an easy challenge on their hands.
Based on the first few weeks of the campaign, we have an idea of who the bigger players will be, along with who isn’t perhaps set to fare as well.
This weekend is no different, with numerous outfits ready to fall at the next hurdle.
Despite the busiest transfer window in the English top flight, Sunderland haven’t made the start to this Premier League season that they were looking for.
On the other hand, Arsenal’s transfer window contained only a handful of signings and yet the morale in the Gunners’ camp is undoubtedly higher than the Black Cats’ following the club’s deadline-day capture of Mesut Ozil.
Provided the German international returns from his World Cup qualifying commitments in good health, Sunderland will have the unfortunate honour of being the first side to taste Ozil’s influence in a Premier League setting.
After falling victim to Aston Villa on the opening day, Arsenal have looked reinvigorated and are coming off the back of four consecutive wins, something that will do their spirits no harm this weekend.
Having done battle over who would gain automatic promotion for much of last season’s Championship term, Cardiff City and Hull City share a bond as two of the Premier League’s new boys.
However, the South Wales club have made the more substantial improvements to their squad this summer, aiming for expensive quality rather than penny-pinching quantity.
These two clubs drew 2-2 the last time they met at the KC Stadium, but now look like completely different sides.
The Tigers’ only win of the season came at home against Norwich City, but Malky Mackay’s men have looked impressive in two of their three opening fixtures, and they did well to capitalise upon their win over Manchester City with a steadfast draw against Everton.
As long as the defence can stay as strong as it was against Roberto Martinez’s outfit, the Bluebirds should get one over on a club they know well.
Having not played since late August, Aston Villa’s fortnight break could go one of two ways: Either it could reinvigorate the squad or leave them lacking match preparedness.
The Villans can be glad that a home fixture against Newcastle United welcomes them back to the Premier League.
Can Newcastle avoid defeat at Villa Park?
The Magpies managed their first goal of the season in the 1-0 win over Fulham last week, but still look fairly clueless when moving forward with the ball.
In direct contrast, Paul Lambert’s attack should take care of itself considering the assets they boast at that end of the pitch. It’s merely a question of whether the likes of Jores Okore, Ron Vlaar, Antonio Luna and Matt Lowton are up to the task in defence.
In fairness to the Birmingham club, Villa have had an incredibly difficult start to the season, facing Chelsea, Liverpool and Arsenal, but that baptism of fire could work in their favour.
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