The team news below on Chelsea omitted to mention that Willy Caballero will the back-up goalkeeper.
Some Opta stats for the afternoon’s Premier League matches.
- Newcastle’s average possession figure this season is just 32.8%, the lowest in the Premier League. The Magpies are the only side yet to have more possession than their opponents in a single Premier League match this season.
- Bournemouth have lost each of their last six Premier League games in London, conceding 20 goals in the process.
- Aston Villa have won only one of their last 26 Premier League away games (D4 L21). (Sweet memories of Tim Sherwood and Remi Garde)
- No side has conceded the first goal in more Premier League games this season than Norwich (10), with the Canaries going on to lose every single one of those. Meanwhile, Leicester have won their last 19 Premier League games when scoring first.
Liverpool are absolutely cruising it. Poor, poor Pep.
They’ve been made to work for this by Nigel Pearson’s Watford but Liverpool are now 11 points clear at the top after a 2-0 win. Bit of pressure on Leicester, then.
His Tottenham team don’t play until tomorrow when they face Wolves, but Mourinho is the focus for this week’s column from Andrew Anthony.
After their game against Crewe last week was postponed after a players’ strike because of unpaid wages, Macclesfield do play today at Walsall in League Two after authorities stepped in to make sure they got paid.
The headline team news there is that Kurt Zouma is given another go by Frank Lampard after a harrowing day at Goodison Park last weekend. Leicester are unchanged from last week’s defeat of Aston Villa.
Chelsea v Bournemouth teams
Chelsea: Arrizabalaga, Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Zouma, Emerson Palmieri, Kante, Jorginho, Willian, Mount, Pulisic, Abraham.
Subs: Christensen, Pedro, Kovacic, Hudson-Odoi, Batshuayi, James.
AFC Bournemouth: Ramsdale, Stacey, Francis, Mepham, Rico, Gosling, Lewis Cook, Lerma, Billing, Fraser, King.
Subs: Boruc, Surman, Solanke, Stanislas, Simpson, Kilkenny, Dobre.
Referee: Graham Scott (Oxfordshire)
Burnley v Newcastle teams
Burnley: Pope, Bardsley, Tarkowski, Mee, Pieters, Hendrick, Westwood, Cork, McNeil, Barnes, Wood.
Subs: Lowton, Drinkwater, Brady, Gibson, Rodriguez, Hart, Lennon.
Newcastle: Dubravka, Manquillo, Fernandez, Schar, Dummett, Willems, Atsu, Hayden, Sean Longstaff, Carroll, Joelinton.
Subs: Gayle, Muto, Krafth, Lejeune, Elliot, Yedlin, Matthew Longstaff.
Referee: Tim Robinson (West Sussex)
Leicester v Norwich teams
Leicester: Schmeichel, Ricardo Pereira, Evans, Soyuncu, Chilwell, Ndidi, Praet, Tielemans, Maddison, Iheanacho, Vardy.
Subs: Justin, Morgan, Gray, Albrighton, Ward, Barnes, Perez.
Norwich: Krul, Aarons, Zimmermann, Godfrey, Byram, Tettey, Trybull, Emi, McLean, Cantwell, Pukki.
Subs: Vrancic, Hernandez, Lewis, Stiepermann, Fahrmann, Amadou, Srbeny.
Referee: Andrew Madley (West Yorkshire)
Sheffield United v Aston Villa teams.
Sheff Utd: Henderson, Basham, Egan, O’Connell, Baldock, Lundstram, Norwood, Fleck, Stevens, Mousset, McGoldrick.
Subs: Luke Freeman, McBurnie, Sharp, Jagielka, Osborn, Moore, Besic.
Aston Villa: Heaton, Guilbert, Engels, Hause, Targett, McGinn, Nakamba, Lansbury, El Ghazi, Wesley, Grealish.
Subs: Taylor,Douglas Luiz, Konsa, Trezeguet, Nyland, Kodjia, Elmohamady.
Referee: Peter Bankes (Merseyside)
Things on a bit of a knife-edge at Anfield, with VAR playing its part.
Burnley’s star man will be in action this afternoon, and he spoke to Paul Wilson.
Can Frank Lampard’s Chelsea stop the rot? Can Brendan Rodgers’ Leicester keep winning? Those are the key, obvious questions of this Saturday afternoon after Liverpool’s game with Watford is completed.
Chelsea v Bournemouth
Neither team is in particularly good nick at the moment, with Bournemouth on a horrible run, having lost their five matches since beating Manchester United on November 2. Frank’s men have slowed up, having been Big Dunk-ed by Everton; they have won just one of their last five league matches.
Sheffield United v Aston Villa
Two promoted teams from last season have had converging campaigns. Blades have been the surprise package, and are yet to be worked out in the Premier League. Aston Villa, in 18th, struggle badly for goals, and have won just one of their last six matches. Much relies on the individual talent of Jack Grealish while Chris Wilder’s team operate as a unit. Having said that, last week’s defeat of Norwich was a first win in five.
Leicester v Norwich
A team that cannot stop scoring goals against another that cannot stop conceding, a 0-0 is almost guaranteed, though Jamie Vardy is looking to make it nine matches in a row in which he has scored. Norwich are second-bottom, Leicester are top and anything but a home win would be a surprise.
Burnley v Newcastle
One for the purists, almost certainly. Burnley are on a poor run, having lost their last three and having been dismantled last week by Tottenham. A Sean Dyche rocket has surely been launched in the Lancashire area. That defending for Son Heung-min’s goal was horrendous. Meanwhile, Newcastle are defying expectation and xG, and are in 11th.
All that and the latest news from the EFL, in which Leeds v Cardiff is the pick of the day. League Two leaders Wycombe host Burton, and in League Two, it’s Swindon v Oldham in which Eoin Doyle looks to add to his huge total of 18 goals so far this season.