Premier League: 10 things to watch this weekend

1) Story of two strikers in the Mersey derby

Seven games into the season in all competitions and Frank Lampard can finally select any recognized striker he wants in an Everton shirt. Provided someone in the Premier League saved Neal Maupay in time for the Merseyside derby, that is. Lampard and Jürgen Klopp will be relieved to focus on renewing old rivalries after distractions from a transfer window which both say dragged on too long into the season. Everton are winless in the Premier League but are building steadily. A derby debut for Maupay, signed from Brighton last Friday but not cleared to play at Leeds on Tuesday, would provide a desperately needed presence up front. Klopp’s striking options are rich in comparison but also involve a dilemma. Is Darwin Núñez returning straight to the Liverpool squad after serving a three-match ban for head-butting Joachim Andersen last time out? Goodison Park would be the perfect place to find self-control and redemption. Oh

Neal Maupay should finally be available for Everton. Photo: Tony McArdle/Everton FC/Getty Images

2) Chelsea need to find their edge

“Just toughen up,” was Thomas Tuchel’s message after Chelsea succumbed to Southampton midweek. The Blues took the lead at St Mary’s but didn’t have the guts to stick with it and couldn’t get back into the game after Adam Armstrong gave the Saints the lead in stoppage time of the first half. A back three of César Azpilicueta, Thiago Silva and Kalidou Koulibaly is unparalleled in terms of experience in European football, but they have failed to provide the foundation on which the rest of the squad can build. They struggled to cope with Armstrong and Ché Adams, while Roméo Lavia was allowed to equalize from 25 yards without the threat of a challenge from a blue shirt. Chelsea have turned to the transfer market to resolve their failings, but Tuchel knows they need to work within the squad to provide the courage needed to mount a serious title challenge. David Moyes expects nothing less than full commitment from his West Ham players, and if Chelsea can’t deliver the same they could be in for another disappointing outing. Wu

3) An Old Trafford blockbuster

Will Antony show up and start reimbursing his initial £82m fee? Can Arsenal secure a sixth win in six Premier League games? Are Manchester United really on the rise as Erik ten Hag’s side look to improve on a slow season opener? Is Cristiano Ronaldo in a permanent mood because he didn’t get the Dutchman’s desired escape from the team? Pick your subplot (there are plenty more) and witness a Sunday showdown that, given United’s perennial soap opera status and Arsenal’s renaissance under Mikel Arteta, has a touch of the twinkle of years past. of the match when these rivals were the competition’s pre-eminent forces. not a word

Arsenal players during their 2-1 win over Villa. Photo: Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC/Getty Images

4) Isak hopes for a less nasty match

Newcastle fans love their centre-forwards and Alexander Isak is sure to enjoy the warmest of receptions as the Swedish striker makes his home debut against Crystal Palace at St James’ Park on Saturday. After scoring a sublime goal – and having a second disallowed for a tight offside – as Newcastle suffered a 2-1 defeat at Liverpool on Wednesday, the 22-year-old is eager for his first victory over Tyneside. “It’s never [good] losing in the final seconds like we did at Liverpool,” said Isak as he promised more than goals for Eddie Howe’s side. “So I start disappointed but we have to use that feeling as energy against Crystal Palace. I will try to provide a bit of everything, not only in the box but also in the building set. I will try to float and use my qualities. LT

5) Gerrard faces bleak prospects

Erling Haaland, Julián Álvarez and co could be forgiven for licking their lips. Manchester City travel to Villa Park on Saturday having scored 17 goals in their previous four matches and, having beaten Nottingham Forest six times in midweek, a Villa side that have yet to keep a clean sheet this season represents rather inviting fodder. It would be hard to expect Steven Gerrard, who has openly admitted to feeling the heat, to get a result against the champions, but his struggling Villa side can’t afford to take a stick to the Forest. Ezri Konsa joined forces with Tyrone Mings in Wednesday’s 2-1 loss at Arsenal and Calum Chambers started alongside Konsa in the previous game, which was lost 1-0 at home to West Ham. For Gerrard, nothing seems to be working at the moment. BF

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6) Will Spurs release Richarlison?

Richarlison may have played just 77 minutes for Tottenham in the Premier League since joining from Everton in the summer, but he’s done plenty already. glimpse of the quality he is capable of, although the Brazilian’s ball-juggling antics that angered Steve Cooper and David Moyes weren’t that good. Many Spurs fans expected Antonio Conte to release Richarlison against West Ham in midweek, but he had to settle for being the only substitute on the pitch at London Stadium, despite complaints de Conte to have to play three games in space. six days. With Son Heung-min struggling to hit his usual highs, could Fulham’s top-flight visit on Saturday be the 25-year-old’s chance to make his full Premier League debut for Spurs? EA

Richarlison comes on for West Ham in Tottenham's 1-1 draw on Wednesday
Richarlison comes on for West Ham in Tottenham’s 1-1 draw on Wednesday. Photograph: John Sibley/Action Images/Reuters

7) Contrast of spending styles at the City Ground

Two of this season’s promoted sides meet when Bournemouth visit Nottingham Forest and the contrasting way in which they have conducted their summer business could hardly be more striking. Largely out of necessity due to a summer exodus of loanees and free agents, Forest have been pouring money into a series of signings to build a squad that can stay on their feet, while the Bournemouth owner has already fired Scott Parker, apparently tired of his public mocking the club’s reluctance to bring in enough new bodies to make them competitive. Both clubs suffered heavy defeats last week, but with the transfer window now closed until January, Saturday’s encounter should give a fair idea of ​​who is best equipped to finish above the black line thick at the end of the season. BG

8) Bees bid to improve points return

It’s only the beginning, but pre-season fears for Brentford and Leeds have proven unfounded. Jesse Marsch’s side could welcome a return to the place where his survival was confirmed in May: they have continued since and play with the kind of energy expected of any team supervised by the former Red Bull pupil . Brentford operate with similar vigor but could do without becoming draw specialists. The stunning win over Manchester United is their only three-point win to date, but Fulham are the only side to beat them. They weren’t able to add an X-factor to their attack in the form of Shakhtar Donetsk forward Mykhaylo Mudryk on deadline day but have another trick up their sleeve. Denmark winger Mikkel Damsgaard has been relieved so far with a League Cup start and two top flight appearances from the bench and is updating; maybe it’s time to place it from the start and build on its undoubted quality by turning one point into three. N / A

Ben Mee in action during the midweek draw at Palace.
Ben Mee in action during the midweek draw at Palace. Photography: Matthew Ashton/AMA/Getty Images

9) Lamptey could lift Brighton

Graham Potter’s side suffered their first defeat in 10 league games at Fulham on Tuesday. Fortunately, they have the perfect opportunity to bounce back against Leicester. One bright spot for the Seagulls at Craven Cottage was the positive impact Tariq Lamptey had on the bench. The former Chelsea youngster was a revelation on his arrival at Brighton, but Potter preferred Solly March at full-back against Fulham, although he quickly changed formation on Tuesday, moving Joel Veltman to right-back after a disappointing opening at 25 mins from mars. Lamptey has come off the bench in every Premier League game this season but has yet to start and this home game could be the perfect opportunity to give the full-back a chance to show what he can do from the start. kick-off. Lamptey was thought to have lost some momentum after a hamstring injury last season, but his cameos show he’s ready to shine once more. Wu

10) Critical Time for Lage and the Wolves

Bruno Lage needs a win – Wolves haven’t had one since April – but at least the Portuguese can change their attack after shooting blanks at Bournemouth in midweek. Raúl Jiménez looks like a shadow of himself, Hwang Hee-chan looks like a plan B and Gonçalo Guedes is not settled yet. Wolves have scored two goals in five league games and their season could have taken a different shape had they made the most of the chances. Lage must be tempted to give Sasa Kalajdzic his Molineux debut and the 6ft 7in striker, a £15m signing from Stuttgart, is sure to add a different dimension. “I’m not going to pressure him just to score goals,” Lage said. “The goals must come from everywhere. This is not a one man job. It’s up to the forwards, wingers and midfielders to score the good chances we create. BF

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. Premier League watch weekend

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