The Fixture Forecast (Jan-Feb)
An emphatic win at The Stadium of Light helped to ease the early elimination pain from the FA cup last weekend. Our consecutive league wins see us move into ninth position in the table, but how do the next run of fixtures shape up?
Manchester United- Saturday 21 Jan- Home
Mourinho’s men have finally found some momentum, going on a run of nine consecutive wins in all competitions. They will travel to Stoke the favourites and will be looking at the fixture as a good opportunity to extend their streak. As for Stoke, we showed that we can put up a fight against the high-fliers, taking the lead at Liverpool and scoring two goals at Stamford Bridge. If Hughes gets it right on the day, there is a chance we could get something from the game.
Everton- Wednesday 1 Feb- Home
Another home game, this time mid-week, as we host Everton who sit pretty in 7th. They’ve started the season well, which included winning the reverse fixture 1-0 back in August and they’ve also just embarrassed Manchester City. There is currently six points between us so it’s an ideal chance to close the gap. The Toffees, who were also eliminated from the FA Cup last weekend, will be a good test of an inconsistent Stoke side who will equally see the game as winnable. Realistically, we have got to be going in for all three points here.
West Brom- Saturday 4 Feb- Away
We always beat West Brom. Well, not so much now. A 1-1 draw earlier in the season ended The Baggies streak of 3 straight wins against us. Pulis seems to love playing Stoke, and given that there is currently only 1 place and 2 points separating us in the league, his West Brom side are going to be well up for it. The game is another good test of the teams around us, and positive results against Everton and West Brom would be a massive statement of intent from Hughes.
Crystal Palace- Saturday 11 Feb- Home
Palace have had a nightmare season but with Sam Allardyce recently coming in to the rescue, its difficult to gauge their form. It will be interesting to see how they get on in the next couple of games, having lost last time out against West Ham. On paper, though, a home game against a side struggling at the bottom of the league will give no excuses for anything other than a win.
Written by Tom Hammersley
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