Wolves and Spurs to keep us waiting
Gunners set to be stunned
United to enjoy temporary respite
Spurs are yet to fire a blank under Ange Postecoglou while both teams have scored in all but two of Wolves' league fixtures this term.
Digging down a little deeper we find that the hosts tend to come good after the break, scoring 11 of their 14 in the second period. The same goes for second-place Tottenham too, who have converted just shy of half their league haul in the 20 minutes after half-time.
If Gary O'Neil's men respond positively to some cruel and costly refereeing decisions in recent weeks they will fancy their chances against a rejigged Spurs back-line minus Romero and Van de Ven. In this regard, Hwang Hee-chan is the player to watch, with a direct goal involvement in each of his last five Premier League outings.
Why does the very faint prospect of the Clarets causing an upset nag away? All the stats and every semblance of common sense tells us otherwise.
Burnley have won only once all season and are on a losing streak of four, being breached every 32 minutes in those defeats. At the other end it's even more stark, Vincent Kompany's strugglers managing a goal every 123 minutes in 2023/24.
The Gunners meanwhile may be facing late fitness tests for Odegaard, Nketiah and Saka - the latter most likely to be okay - and they may be bruised from a VAR-influenced loss in the North-East.
But this is still the side that put nine past Bournemouth and Sheffield United without reply, the previous times they have faced teams in the bottom three. This is still the side with the joint-most clean sheets and a more than respectable chance conversion rate of 12.4%.
Perhaps it's because Burnley are the only club Mikel Arteta has yet to get the better of in the league. Perhaps its because the Clarets' meagre four points this term have all been gained on the road.
The visitors have scored inside 15 minutes in three of their fixtures this season. Let's at least go for an early shock to the system.
Both teams have an unpredictable air about them so let's focus on what we know.
To compensate for the loss of their two best creatives in Michael Olise and Eberechi Eze, the Eagles have ensured they are hard to penetrate in recent weeks, keeping clean sheets in four of their last six. Two of these have been Roy Hodgson masterclasses.
Moreover, they will be hugely encouraged by the return of Eze, the England star assisting last week in a half-hour cameo.
As for Everton, they are unquestionably turning a corner, a freak own-goal last week depriving them of two wins on the bounce for the first time in over a year.
For all that the Toffees look a more complete proposition with Dwight McNeil finding form and Dominic Calvert-Lewin finding fitness, it's improvements made at the back that has really turned their fortunes around. Three-quarters of their rearguard - Tarkowski, Branthwaite, and Mykolenko - have been outstanding of late.
Don't expect a glut of goals at Selhurst Park.
United's calamitous and dramatic crisis continues, with Bruno Fernandes' last-gasp strike last weekend amounting to a finger in the dam, in lieu of a ref's face.
With a Leicester tribute act at the heart of their defence, a horribly ill-balanced midfield, and wingers who don't put in the miles in spite of their game-plan demanding it, United are in grave danger of breaking all manner of dishonourable records this season. A defeat here would be the first time they've lost three on the spin at Old Trafford since 1962.
This is Luton though, a team that admittedly have found a firmer footing in the Premier League in recent weeks, while picking up a welcome habit of scoring late in games - their last five have all been converted beyond the 80th minute - but still a side yet to keep a shut-out, their limitations too often laid bare.
Even amidst a mini-recovery, in their last six games the Hatters have faced 18.6 shots per 90.
This weekend should be viewed in isolation when we consider the Reds' calamitous and dramatic campaign.
Unbeaten in seven, the Magpies continue to defy an injury crisis that has stretched Eddie Howe's squad to its limits. On Tuesday evening they were unable to fill their Champions League bench.
Of their many wounded and suspended, Howe will hoping that Callum Wilson is passed fit to face his former team, the 31-year-old boasting 1.3 goals per 90 this term, from taking on a league-high of 2.8 shots on target per 90.
A tight hamstring puts him at 50/50.
Wilson aside though, we can expect such a different line-up to past weeks it renders all of Newcastle's impressive attacking stats to this juncture redundant.
All of which is good news for the Cherries, who are best advised to shake off last week's shellacking at Manchester City and focus instead on their recent bettering of Burnley at the Vitality.
Philip Billing got the winner that day and his marauding from midfield is a big plus for the hosts. No team-mate comes close to him for key passes, while 1.6 shots per game makes him a threat.
Read Jack Critchley's Saturday Championship Tips here.
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