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The English Premier League has a full round of
midweek fixtures to kick off the busy festive period, with ten EPL matches
between Tuesday and Thursday.
Jose Mourinho is once again the headline act
as he heads for a Manchester United reunion as Tottenham boss on Wednesday.
The Special One has notched a pair of 3-2 wins
in the Premier League since taking over at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, with
Spurs rising to fifth in the table.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United continued their
stuttering efforts when they were held to a 2-2 draw by Aston Villa at Old
Trafford on Sunday.
It leaves them ninth in the EPL standings,
albeit just two points adrift of their midweek visitors.
Liverpool and Everton contest the Merseyside
Derby at Anfield on Wednesday night, with the pair playing out starkly
contrasting seasons either side of Stanley Park.
Jurgen Klopp’s European champions continued
their supreme start to the campaign on home turf last weekend when they edged
past Brighton 2-1.
It maintained a run that has seen them drop
just two points in 14 games so far to keep an eight-point buffer between
themselves and the rest.
No such luck for Everton, whose boss Marco
Silva was left clinging on for his job after suffering an agonizing 2-1 defeat
away to second-placed Leicester on Sunday.
The Toffees had earlier taken the lead but
came unstuck to sit one place and two points above the relegation zone.
It was a notable victory for Brendan Rodgers’
men, keeping the title race alive behind his runaway former club ahead of the
Foxes’ home game against sorry Watford on Wednesday.
The Hornets go to the King Power Stadium after
sacking their second coach of the season in Quique Sanchez Flores following
defeat to drop rivals Southampton on Saturday night.
There’s another big game to go at in the north
west, too, as Manchester City make a tricky trip to Burnley on Tuesday.
Pep Guardiola’s side were pegged back by
Newcastle last weekend, with the dispiriting draw leaving them 11 points adrift
of Liverpool at the top.
The reigning champions face a Clarets side
whose impressive start has faded, with a 2-0 Turf Moor defeat to Crystal Palace
the latest blow to the European charge of Sean Dyche’s men.
Back-to-back losses have also blighted Chelsea
in recent weeks, not least their shock reverse by the only goal to London
rivals West Ham last time out.
Frank Lampard’s Blues take on Aston Villa at
Stamford Bridge on Wednesday, with the Villans fresh from sharing the spoils at
There are two EPL fixtures on Thursday, with
Freddie Ljungberg making his first home appearance as interim Arsenal boss when
Brighton visit the Emirates Stadium.
The Gunners made it four draws in their last
five winless games when they were held at relegation candidates Norwich, with
the Seagulls unlucky to come away from Anfield empty-handed.
Sheffield United and Newcastle, meanwhile,
contest an intriguing clash at Bramall Lane, with the hosts looking to muscle
in on the European reckoning and the visitors eyeing a berth in the top half.
It was Wolves who held the Yorkshire side to a
1-1 draw last weekend to keep themselves sixth in the pile.
Nuno Espirito Santo now has a Molineux date
with West Ham to plan for, as the Black Country side plot a course for
successive Europa League qualifications.
A basement battle on Wednesday sees
Southampton host Norwich at St Mary’s Stadium, with the pair stranded in the
relegation zone despite both picking up four points from their last two
Crystal Palace and Bournemouth, meanwhile,
contest a mid-table tussle at Selhurst Park on Tuesday.
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