Everton may have brought Arsenal back down to earth on Matchday 15, but the Premier League leaders will still kick off Week 16 as the squad to beat.
The Gunners had their three-match winning streak snapped after a 1-1 draw with Everton this past weekend, but are still five points clear of second place in the league table. However, that lead could shrink in a hurry with Arsenal scheduled to face off against Sergio Aguero and Manchester City this coming weekend.
With that matchup and several others already generating plenty of buzz, let's take a closer look at the latest league table ahead of Matchday 16 and predict which clubs are poised to come out on top this weekend.
|Week 16 Premier League Table|
|15||West Bromwich Albion||15||3||6||6||-4||15|
|17||West Ham United||15||3||4||8||-6||13|
|Matchday 16 Predictions|
|West Ham United||1-0||Sunderland|
|Cardiff City||1-1||West Bromwich Albion|
|Hull City||2-1||Stoke City|
|Aston Villa||1-2||Manchester United|
|Norwich City||2-2||Swansea City|
Manchester City 3, Arsenal 2
If there's a squad capable of keeping pace with the Citizens at Etihad this year, it's Arsenal. But even the Gunners are guaranteed to struggle with City's firepower.
No Premier League club has scored more goals than City this season, and no one has come close to matching their offensive production inside their home stadium. Manuel Pellegrini's squad has netted 29 goals in seven league matches at Etihad in 2013-14, and is 7-0-0 in those matches as a result.
Perhaps even more impressive, City have conceded just twice total over those seven victories.
It goes without saying that Arsene Wenger's team faces a tall task this weekend. Though Arsenal have defended extremely well outside of Emirates for the most part this season, they'll need to be on an all-new level if they are to slow an offensive juggernaut that's averaging well over four goals per match at home this year.
Watch for Aguero, who has 12 goals in 14 appearances this season, to spark the Citizens on Saturday.
Aston Villa 1, Manchester United 2
Although defending champions Manchester United have been lackluster since topping Arsenal 1-0 back in Week 11, the Red Devils are poised to get back on track this weekend as they're set to take on a struggling Aston Villa squad at Villa Park.
David Moyes and his slumping United squad will hit the road in Week 16 and attempt to end their drought against the Lions, who have won just twice in seven tries at home this year.
And with Robin van Persie set to join forces with Wayne Rooney at the top of United's lineup for the first time in a long time, expect the Red Devils to cash in on a pair of goals as the talented tandem overwhelms Villa's defense.
Keep in mind the defending champions' attack has been much more potent away from Old Trafford this season for whatever reason, tallying two goals per game in Premier League road matches. That's a considerable amount given that the Red Devils have scored just eight goals in eight league matches at Old Trafford.
Tottenham Hotspur 1, Liverpool 3
Week 16's final showdown will pit Spurs up against Liverpool at White Hart Lane in an intriguing matchup of two of the league's top clubs.
Both squads are in the top six heading into the weekend and both are in top form ahead of Sunday's meeting. However, the X-factor will be Reds striker Luis Suarez, who leads all Premier League scorers with 14 goals this season despite having missed Liverpool's first five matches because of suspension.
Suarez is on fire a the moment, having scored five goals total over Liverpool's past two matches and single-handedly outscoring Norwich City in Week 14.
For an offensively-challenged club like Tottenham, who have totaled just seven goals in seven home games this year, Suarez and the Reds are sure to present a nightmare matchup.
Spurs boast capable scorers in Roberto Soldado and Gylfi Sigurdsson, but without a go-to talent like Gareth Bale, Andre Villas-Boas' side will need to turn in a remarkable defensive effort on Sunday evening.
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