10 things to look out for in the Premier League this weekend
Moises Caicedo must find a way to slot back in at Brighton, Marcel Sabitzer has big shoes to fill and can Everton get a new manager bounce? 10 things to look out for in the Premier League this weekend
- The Premier League is returning after a two-week break and a busy deadline day
- Arsenal will look to continue their title charge, as the relegation battle heats up
- Sportsmail takes a look at the 10 things to watch out for in the Premier League
The Premier League returns after a two-week break for the FA Cup and there is plenty on the line, as we head into the business end of the season.
Arsenal will look to continue their title charge as Manchester City look to chase them down while Manchester United, Newcastle United and Tottenham battle it out for the last two places in the top four.
Liverpool and Chelsea will be hoping to start turning their miserable fortunes around to give them any hope of bagging a place in Europe next season.
Things however will look extremely different this weekend with teams spending big in the final few days before the transfer window slammed shut – therefore there could be plenty of new faces on display in the top-flight.
Sportsmail takes a look at 10 things to watch out for in the Premier League this weekend after a two week break from action.
Arsenal will look to continue their title charge as the Premier League returns from a break
Liverpool and Chelsea will be hoping to start turning their miserable fortunes around quickly
ENZO FERNANDEZ GETS THE GREEN LIGHT
Chelsea’s new £107million signing Enzo Fernandez looks like he will be able to play against Fulham on Friday night.
Fernandez’s stunning move had been agreed in the last minutes of the transfer window as both clubs spent Tuesday locked in talks to try and get the move wrapped up.
Blues boss Potter had revealed in his pre-match press conference that Fernandez’s international clearance was yet to go through, sparking doubts he could miss the clash with west London rivals Fulham.
But, according to TyC Sports, his paperwork is signed and sealed, meaning he is in contention to feature at Stamford Bridge.
It’s a huge boost as the new-look Chelsea squad begin their attempt to finish in the top four after a disappointing season so far.
Chelsea’s new £107million signing Enzo Fernandez looks likely to play against Fulham
WILL CAICEDO SLOT BACK IN?
Throughout the month of January there was speculation surrounding whether Brighton midfielder Moises Caicedo would leave, as he was attracting interest from both Arsenal and Chelsea.
The Ecuador international saw a £70million bid for him from the Gunners rejected and decided to write an Instagram post which signalled he was leaving Brighton, in a bid to try force a move away.
The 21-year-old begun his re-integration into the Seagulls squad on Wednesday after the club kept their vow to head coach Roberto De Zerbi to keep him from leaving.
The question is now can he just slot back into the team and make the same impact he was after everything that has happened.
By the looks of the training pictures it could be as easy as that, but of course we don’t see behind the scenes and it’s one to keep your eye on, as he might have to rebuild the club’s trust first and foremost.
Moises Caicedo will need to slot back into the Brighton team after trying to force a move away
The cliche of a new manager bounce, Everton will most certainly be hoping they have exactly after appointing Sean Dyche to help their avoid relegation from the Premier League.
The former Burnley boss is experienced when it comes to being in and around the relegation zone due to his time with the Clarets – therefore could be a smart choice.
That coupled with the fact that the entire squad should be determined to impress Dyche to stake their claim for a place in the starting line-up.
Most signs lead to potential change. The sticking factor, however, is that his first game in charge is the early kick-off against league leaders Arsenal after failing to bring in any new signings on transfer deadline day.
Not only is it a tough match, the situation around Goodison Park is extremely toxic, and it could be hard for the experienced manager to instill a feel good factor right away.
Everton will be hoping for a new manager bounce after appointing Sean Dyche (pictured)
CAN SABITZER REPLACE ERIKSEN SEAMLESSLY
Manchester United’s midfield has been a key factor of their success so far this campaign with boss Erik ten Hag consistently sticking with the likes of Casemiro, Christian Eriksen and Bruno Fernandes.
The injury to Eriksen, who has been ruled out for three months, came as a significant blow to United. Although they managed to bring in Marcel Sabitzer on loan from Bayern Munich in hope of filling the void.
The Red Devils will face Crystal Palace and Sabitzer could just well be handed his debut at the first opportunity possible.
If the Austrian international is brought straight into the team, he won’t get much time to settle in, and the expectation will very much be can he replace Eriksen seamlessly in order to keep their season on track.
The pressure will be on Sabitzer to perform otherwise United will have to turn to either Fred or Scott McTominay to slot in – and that would then seem like a wasted venture of bringing Sabitzer to Old Trafford.
Manchester United’s new loan signing Marcel Sabitzer is expected to replace Christian Eriksen
HOW WILL NEWCASTLE COPE WITHOUT GUIMARAES
Brazilian midfielder Bruno Guimaraes has been instrumental to Newcastle’s success since arriving at the club from Lyon last January.
Guimaraes picked up a red card during the Magpies 2-1 victory over Southampton in the Carabao Cup, which saw bag a spot in the final, although it means he will now be suspended for three games.
It will be interesting to see how they fair without him against a desperate West Ham side, especially given the fact that whenever Guimaraes has dropped out of the side, a rare occasion. His natural replacement was Jonjo Shelvey.
The Magpies sold Shelvey to Premier League rivals Nottingham Forest on transfer deadline day.
Not only is the question how will they fair, but also who will even replace him in the midfield for the clash.
Bruno Guimaraes picked up a red card during the Magpies 2-1 victory over Southampton
USA MIDFIELD REUNITED AT LEEDS
Reunited and it feels so good! Childhood friends and USA international midfielder Tyler Adams and Weston McKennie could be lining up alongside each other this weekend.
Leeds confirmed the signing of McKennie on loan from Serie A giants Juventus earlier this week.
But the bigger news is that boss Jesse Marsch should be able to utilise him new addition with ease, having played alongside summer signing Adams regular on the international stage, including at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
They also team-mates in the USA youth team set-ups and went to the same football program as teenagers in Florida.
It could be the answer to Leeds’ fears of being dragged into a relegation battle given their impressive partnership and relationship. Even more than that McKennie is a box-to-box midfielder that perhaps has been missing since the departure of Mateusz Klich.
USA midfielders and childhood friends Weston McKennie (left) and Tyler Adams are reunited
DOES JORGINHO DISTURB THE BALANCE OR ADD VALUE
Jorginho’s switch across the capital from Chelsea to Arsenal is getting mixed reviews, with Arsenal fans questioning how they went from Moises Caicedo to the ageing Italian midfielder.
Others have quickly realised he provides the squad more much-needed depth if they want to win the Premier League.
Not only that, he is a winner, and funny enough only two years was in the running for the Baloon d’Or – having won Euro 2020, the Champions League, and the Club World Cup.
The fear is that he disturbs the balance given how strong Arsenal have performed in midfield with Thomas Partey, Granit Xhaka and Martin Odegaard.
We will not have to wait long to find out given Partey is currently sidelined, as is his understudy Mohamed Elneny, meaning he should slot straight in for the clash against Everton.
Will Arsenal’s new signing Jorginho (pictured) add value or disturb the balance in title charge
LIVERPOOL STILL WITHOUT A WIN IN 2023
Liverpool’s struggles have continued into 2023 and they have failed to win a match in the top-flight so far this year. Losing to Brentford and Brighton while drawing with Chelsea.
Boss Jurgen Klopp must stop the rot and get their season back on track as missing out on European football next season would be tragedy, especially if they’re hoping to attract new signings to Anfield in the summer.
The Reds have the perfect opportunity to pick up their first win against strugglers Wolves, although it will not be plain sailing given they struggled to advance past the same opponents in the FA Cup – eventually progressing in a replay.
They also could remain without key figures such as Luis Diaz, Diogo Jota, Virgil van Dijk and Roberto Firmino, although the latter two have been pictured back in training.
Liverpool are still without a win in the Premier League in 2023 ahead of their clash with Wolves
SPURS POTENTIALLY WITHOUT CONTE AT CITY
Tottenham look as though they will be without boss Antonio Conte for their important clash with Manchester City this weekend after undergoing surgery to remove his gallbladder.
That is a great shame for Spurs, as the Italian boasts a fairly impressive record against City boss Pep Guardiola in the Premier League.
When Conte and Guardiola first arrived in England, the Italian became the first ever manager to win home and away in the league against a side managed by Guardiola, as Chelsea romped to the title.
The following season Guardiola got his revenge by winning both of those clashes. Since he arrived in north London, they’ve shared the spoils once again with the former Juventus boss winning last season before City sealed a 4-2 victory this campaign.
A share of three wins each is a strong record against Guardiola and his stacked City side, but this weekend’s clash could be up to Conte’s assistant Cristian Stellini.
Antonio Conte could be absent from Tottenham’s match against Manchester City on Sunday
BRENTFORD AND BRIGHTON SERIOUS EUROPA LEAGUE CONTENDERS
Brentford and Brighton as well as Fulham have been the surprise packages in the Premier League so far this season.
The Bees and Seagulls have games in hand on Fulham while they both sit above the likes of Liverpool and Chelsea. Are they now serious contenders to make the Europa League? It cannot be ruled out.
As we head into the business end of the season, both sides are still consistently picking up solid results, and even shocking the big clubs.
This weekend will be a telling sign for both sides as they come up against strugglers Southampton and Bournemouth respectively.
Those fixtures against the teams desperate for points now become vitally important as they must be winning those games to remain in the hunt. We shall see if they can this weekend.
Brentford and Brighton are legitimate Europa League contenders, if they maintain their form
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