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Tuesday, 11 December, 2018

Liverpool set for Wembley success over vulnerable Spurs

Man City could go all the way in the Champions League

Liverpool's Mohamed Salah and Virgil van Dijk
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1 What’s your best bet for the weekend?
Crystal Palace to win at Huddersfield, just as they did in March. Palace have got an impressive away record in the Premier League with just four road losses since November. They have made a strange start to this season with wins at Fulham in the league and Swansea in the League Cup, but they have the game to beat a struggling Huddersfield side.

2 Which favourites look most vulnerable?
Arsenal at Newcastle. This is a game Arsenal won’t relish because Unai Emery knows full well that Rafa Benitez will have a meticulously thought-through gameplan. Newcastle beat Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea at home at late last season and three narrow defeats by three top-four sides this season – their losses to Spurs, Chelsea and Man City were all by 2-1 scorelines – suggest the Toon aren’t far away.

3 Where’s the value at Wembley in Spurs v Liverpool?
Liverpool. There is no Dele Alli, concerns over Harry Kane’s fitness and there must be doubts in Spurs' minds after that defeat at Watford. Tottenham look vulnerable and Liverpool are getting better. Their record with Virgil van Dijk at the back is superb and the pace on the counter will scare any defence.

4 Will Watford finish in the top half?
They will need 45 points, or a few more, and they’ve got 12 already. Another 33 from 34 games? I’d say yes. Huddersfield got off to a flyer last season with seven points from their first three games and were pretty dreadful after that. But they still managed to reach 37 points. Watford look a far better team than Huddersfield so they should be able to stay in the top ten.

5 Who wins the Champions League?
It’s wide-open, but I think it’s Manchester City’s time. Pep Guardiola has had two seasons at the Etihad, taking one to start building his squad and then winning the league in his second campaign. Now comes the assault on Europe. They looked like winners last term until bumping into an inspired Liverpool in the last eight. Lessons will have been learned, their squad has improved and with a fresh Kevin De Bruyne to come back, they could be awesome by the knockout stages.

6 Give us a winner on the midweek coupon
Liverpool to beat Paris St-Germain in the tie of the first round of matches. Nothing should daunt Liverpool now and that includes a visit from one of their rivals for the trophy. I like the work Thomas Tuchel is doing in Paris and I like what PSG are about. But Liverpool boast the firepower to beat anyone.


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Their record with Virgil van Dijk at the back is superb and the pace on the counter will scare any defence
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