B/R Experts Predict Top Matches in World Football for Weekend of Feb. 7-8

Ian Rodgers@irodgers66World Football Staff WriterFebruary 6, 2015

B/R Experts Predict Top Matches in World Football for Weekend of Feb. 7-8

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    Three derbies, a one-time Champions League final and a top-of-the-table clash in France provide the backdrop for this weekend.

    In the Premier League on Saturday, Tottenham Hotspur play host to in-form neighbours Arsenal, while Everton and Liverpool get set to slug out another chapter of the Merseyside derby at Goodison Park.

    The capital of Spain welcomes its own derby in La Liga on Saturday, when Real Madrid make the short trip to face Atletico Madrid at the Vicente Calderon.

    Over in France, Ligue 1 leaders Lyon will be aiming to extend their advantage over reigning champions Paris Saint-Germain on Sunday.

    Do you agree with our experts' predictions for this weekend? Let us know in the comments section below.

Tottenham Hotspur vs. Arsenal

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    Alex Livie: Tottenham 0-2 Arsenal

    First goalscorer: Olivier Giroud

    As always, this a huge game for both sides, and it will be Arsene Wenger's side who reinforce their top-four credentials.

    Karl Matchett: Tottenham 2-2 Arsenal

    First goalscorer: Harry Kane

    This should be a great game, given both sides will be full of confidence, but neither will want to lose ground on the top four.

    Sam Tighe: Tottenham 1-2 Arsenal

    First goalscorer: Olivier Giroud

    Spurs are good, make no mistake about it, but this new-look Arsenal have been stunningly good for three consecutive weeks.

    Will Tidey: Tottenham 2-1 Arsenal

    First goalscorer: Harry Kane

    Spurs are on a roll, and I expect them to enjoy sweet derby success here, spearheaded by Kane.

    Mike Cummings: Tottenham 1-2 Arsenal

    First goalscorer: Santi Cazorla

    Both teams are in good form at the moment, but if they play like they did at Manchester City, I fancy Arsenal to take the points.

    Jerrad Peters: Tottenham 1-2 Arsenal

    First goalscorer: Harry Kane

    Spurs haven't won a north London derby since March 2013 and are about to host an Arsenal side that looks as though it's rounding into form in perfect time for the stretch run.

    Alex Dimond: Tottenham 2-1 Arsenal

    First goalscorer: Christian Eriksen

    Perhaps the most exciting, intriguing game of the weekend. Both teams are in good spirits and good form, and both sides are capable of scoring a few goals. Arsenal have perhaps been more convincing in recent weeks, but Tottenham have been grinding out wins with impressive determinationif they can do it again at White Hart Lane, it could kick-start the second half of their season.

Everton vs. Liverpool

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    Alex Livie: Everton 2-1 Liverpool

    First goalscorer: Romelu Lukaku

    Everton have had a tough season, but they are not as bad as their league position suggests and can take Merseyside derby bragging rights.

    Karl Matchett: Everton 2-3 Liverpool

    First goalscorer: Kevin Mirallas

    Everton have returned to winning form at the right time, but Liverpool are once again looking strong and could sneak the derby this time.

    Sam Tighe: Everton 1-2 Liverpool

    First goalscorer: Philippe Coutinho

    The Toffees improved with a win over Palace, but Liverpool are head-and-shoulders better than them at the moment.

    Will Tidey: Everton 1-2 Liverpool

    First goalscorer: Daniel Sturridge

    Liverpool are finding some form, and D-Studge is back playing and in the goals. They'll edge this one.

    Mike Cummings: Everton 1-2 Liverpool

    First goalscorer: Daniel Sturridge

    With Sturridge back, Liverpool have a real cutting edge in the attack. Everton will put up fierce resistance, but the red half of Liverpool will be happier on Saturday night.

    Jerrad Peters: Everton 0-2 Liverpool

    First goalscorer: Daniel Sturridge

    Neither of these teams have been filling the goal of late, which would seem to indicate this derby won't be anything like the thrilling 3-3 draw when last they met at Goodison Park.

    Alex Dimond: Everton 2-2 Liverpool

    First goalscorer: Raheem Sterling

    Is Daniel Sturridge fit to start this game? It may perhaps come too soon for the England international. Nevertheless, Liverpool will enter this match full of confidence, considering recent results. Derbies are always exciting occasions, and this one looks set to be no different. A score draw looks likely.

Atletico Madrid vs. Real Madrid

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    Alex Livie: Atletico Madrid 1-2 Real Madrid

    First goalscorer: Karim Benzema

    Real might have lost James Rodriguez to injury (foot), but they look in no mood to take their foot off the gas and can get the better of their city rivals.

    Karl Matchett: Atletico Madrid 2-1 Real Madrid

    First goalscorer: Antoine Griezmann

    The return of Cristiano Ronaldo won’t quite be enough to stop Real suffering another defeat to their city rivals.

    Sam Tighe: Atletico Madrid 1-0 Real Madrid

    First goalscorer: Mario Mandzukic

    Real Madrid's frustration at the hands of Diego Simeone goes on as the home side eke out a 1-0 victory.

    Will Tidey: Atletico Madrid 2-2 Real Madrid

    First goalscorer: Fernando Torres

    Fernando Torres will obviously score first in this one, prompting a Real Madrid comeback and then a late Atleti equaliser.

    Mike Cummings: Atletico Madrid 2-2 Real Madrid

    First goalscorer: Fernando Torres

    Ronaldo is back, but Simeone seems to have figured out how to get results against Real. I foresee goals, controversy, drama and a draw.

    Jerrad Peters: Atletico Madrid 2-1 Real Madrid

    First goalscorer: Antoine Griezmann

    With Pepe (rib), Sergio Ramos (hamstring) and James Rodriguez injured, and Marcelo suspended, Atletico Madrid will go into this match smelling blood. And Real have already had their troubles with their pesky neighbours this season.

    Alex Dimond: Atletico Madrid 1-1 Real Madrid

    First goalscorer: Mario Mandzukic

    Barcelona have slowly got to grips with Atletico Madrid in recent times, but the Madrid derby remains a fiercely contested affair that, in recent times at least, Diego Simeone's side have enjoyed the edge in. Real could well drop points, but they can get a draw at the Vicente Calderon this time.

Juventus vs. AC Milan

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    Alex Livie: Juventus 2-0 AC Milan

    First goalscorer: Paul Pogba

    Juventus are a better side than AC Milan. It's as simple as that.

    Karl Matchett: Juventus 4-0 AC Milan

    First goalscorer: Carlos Tevez

    The gulf between these two is arguably as big as it has ever been.

    Sam Tighe: Juventus 2-0 AC Milan

    First goalscorer: Carlos Tevez

    Juventus are far superior to Milan in 2015. This isn't even a contest.

    Will Tidey: Juventus 1-0 AC Milan

    First goalscorer: Andrea Pirlo

    Classic Italian fixture, classic Italian result. The bearded genius will snatch it with a second-half free-kick.

    Mike Cummings: Juventus 2-0 AC Milan

    First goalscorer: Carlos Tevez

    Juve are seven points clear and seem to be set for yet another title. Milan, meanwhile, are a mess. Home win all the way.

    Jerrad Peters: Juventus 3-0 AC Milan

    First goalscorer: Carlos Tevez

    Juventus have dominated this fixture in recent years and should have little difficulty with an AC Milan side that continues to struggle in Serie A.

    Alex Dimond: Juventus 2-0 AC Milan

    First goalscorer: Paul Pogba

    It would be a classic example of the unpredictability of football if AC Milan won this game, having been so bad for so long against less dangerous opposition. Filippo Inzaghi might be hoping against hope it happens, but Juventus should be far too strong for his beleaguered team.

Lyon vs. Paris Saint-Germain

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    Alex Livie: Lyon 0-2 PSG

    First goalscorer: Zlatan Ibrahimovic

    Lyon may be leading the way in Ligue 1, but PSG are a crack outfit, and their star man will lead them to victory.

    Karl Matchett: Lyon 1-1 PSG

    First goalscorer: Lucas Moura

    This is a game that PSG cannot afford to lose, but strangely, neither can Lyon if they are not to give up ground in the title race. Both sides could be without key attackers.

    Sam Tighe: Lyon 0-1 PSG

    First goalscorer: Zlatan Ibrahimovic

    Alexandre Lacazette is injured (hamstring), and Lyon looked toothless without him. Expect gritty PSG win that impresses no one but does the trick.

    Will Tidey: Lyon 0-3 PSG

    First goalscorer: Edinson Cavani

    PSG will finally find some strong form and get themselves firing again.

    Mike Cummings: Lyon 1-0 PSG

    First goalscorer: Nabil Fekir

    Lyon are unbeaten in their last eight league matches, having kept six straight clean sheets. PSG have won three straight games and are finally in position to reclaim top spot. This one could go either way, so I'll give Lyon a slight edge based on home-field advantage—even without Lacazette.

    Jerrad Peters: Lyon 0-1 PSG

    First goalscorer: Edinson Cavani

    Lyon may be top of the league, but they showed against Monaco last time out just how much they miss top-scorer Lacazette in attack.

    Alex Dimond: Lyon 1-2 PSG

    First goalscorer: Zlatan Ibrahimovic

    Title races turn on such games. Lyon have done brilliantly to move to the top of Ligue 1, but PSG remain the side with the money and the blockbuster talent behind them. This is the game for those big names to earn their moneyand they will.

Latest Standings

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    B/R Experts' Table
     Week's TotalTotal
    Mike Cummings2160
    Karl Matchett 3143
    Sam Tighe 9143
    Alex Livie 2140
    Alex Dimond 3131
    Jerrad Peters2131
    Will Tidey 2102

    Correct result: One point

    Correct first goalscorer: Two points

    Correct scoreline: Three points