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Premier League preview & predictions: Gameweek 31

Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur Premier Le fab26ed74d2706a713162fb52b4a39cb
Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur Premier Le fab26ed74d2706a713162fb52b4a39cb

The Premier League is edging ever closer to its merciful conclusion, but there is plenty left to play for in the final weeks of the season.

There's a full card of action on the table with key games at both ends, as the race for Europe and the fight for survival hit full throttle. So what are we waiting for? Let's dive straight in.

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Friday 9 April

Fulham vs Wolves

Scott Parker is hoping for a better performance against Wolves
Scott Parker is hoping for a better showing this time out | Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

When is kick-off? 20.00 (BST)
Where is it being played? Craven Cottage
TV channel? BT Sport 1 (UK), Peacock Premium (US)

A victory over Liverpool was supposed to galvanise Fulham's charge towards survival, but they've followed it up with three successive defeats. With Arsenal and Chelsea next up, it's not clear where the points will come from in the run-in.

It's looking essential that they beat Wolves, then, who are in a rut of their own. Nuno Espirito Santo's team haven't won since mid February and were outplayed by West Ham on Monday in a 3-2 defeat.

Both sides could really do with a win, which usually means only one thing.

Prediction: Fulham 1-1 Wolves

Saturday 10 April

Man City vs Leeds

Leeds ran City close last time they faced
Leeds ran City close last time they faced | CATHERINE IVILL/Getty Images

When is kick-off? 12.30 (BST)
Where is it being played? Etihad Stadium
TV channel? BT Sport 1 (UK), Peacock Premium (US)

The last time these two sides met, Pep Guardiola was full of praise for Marcelo Bielsa's side and the expansive brand of football they play.

Leeds held City to a 1-1 draw and it looked as if the Elland Road side might well be on for a European spot. But we've since learned that they aren't quite what they were cracked up to be.

They're still comfortably mid-table and capable of taking a big scalp on their day, but here they come up against an unstoppable City side who have won 27 of their last 28 games.

Prediction: Leeds 1-3 Man City

Liverpool vs Aston Villa

Liverpool want to make things right against Villa
Liverpool want to make things right against Villa | Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

When is kick-off? 15.00 (BST)
Where is it being played? Anfield
TV channel? Sky Sports Main Event (UK), fuboTV (US)

The last time Liverpool faced Aston Villa in the Premier League…yeah, we won't go into that actually. Too gruesome.

Let's just say Jurgen Klopp will be demanding there is no repeat performance, especially as his team are looking to bounce back from a stinging midweek defeat to Real Madrid.

With their place in this season's Champions League looking tenuous at best ahead of Wednesday's second leg, qualifying for next season's may be the only small victory the Reds can still claim from this poor campaign, and a victory over Villa at Anfield would help immeasurably.

It would actually send them back into the top four, at least for a few hours.

Prediction: Liverpool 2-0 Aston Villa

Crystal Palace vs Chelsea

Tammy Abraham takes on James McCarthy
Tammy Abraham takes on James McCarthy | Visionhaus/Getty Images

When is kick-off? 17.30 (GMT)
Where is it being played? Selhurst Park
TV channel? Sky Sports Main Event (UK), fuboTV (US)

It seems like there's a London derby in the Premier League almost every week…because there is.

Six of the division's 20 teams hail from the capital city, and while Palace vs Chelsea is one of the less eagerly anticipated iterations, this weekend's clash is a big deal.

Chelsea are wounded after Thomas Tuchel's undefeated record was brought to a crashing end against West Brom, and while a Champions League win over Porto restored some pride, they still need to put things right domestically.

Palace, meanwhile, look in decent shape after battling to a point at Goodison Park last time out, and could make their visitors' lives difficult, particularly with a few heavy legs in the Chelsea camp.

Prediction: Crystal Palace 1-2 Chelsea

Sunday 11 April

Burnley vs Newcastle

Steve Bruce is under pressure at Newcastle
Steve Bruce is under pressure | Stu Forster/Getty Images

When is kick-off? 12.00
Where is it being played? Turf Moor
TV channel? Sky Sports Main Event (UK), Peacock Premium (US)

You wouldn't trade places with Steve Bruce for the world right now, would you? Winless in their last seven Premier League matches, Newcastle have been sucked right into the relegation vacuum. And failure to beat Burnley – who aren't quite out of the mire themselves just yet – could spell disaster for Bruce's side this weekend.

The Magpies sit just three points ahead of Fulham, and even though they have played a game more than the Londoners, they know they are just one bad result away from being leapfrogged and left languishing in the drop zone.

Should they beat Burnley, though, they would sit just one point behind the Clarets, who would then begin to glance nervously over their shoulder.

Prediction: Burnley 1-1 Newcastle

West Ham vs Leicester

West Ham routed Leicester last time they faced
West Ham routed the Foxes last time out | Alex Pantling/Getty Images

When is kick-off? 14.05 (GMT)
Where is it being played? London Stadium
TV channel? Sky Sports Main Event (UK), Peacock Premium (US)

West Ham's rampant 3-0 win at the King Power earlier this season set the tone for what was to come from the Irons. David Moyes' team have defied all expectations, and while Leicester have been just as strong as we expected, West Ham can close the gap on them to just one point with a victory at the London Stadium on Sunday.

Forget the Europa League, West Ham are chasing a return to the big-time, and their rematch with Leicester will tell us a lot about their prospects of getting there.

The Foxes suffered a disappointing defeat to Man City last weekend but had won three on the spin prior and look in very good shape. It could be one of the games of the weekend.

Prediction: West Ham 2-2 Leicester

Tottenham vs Man Utd

Mourinho will be in the spotlight when Man Utd travel to Tottenham
Mourinho will be in the spotlight when Man Utd come to town | SCOTT HEPPELL/Getty Images

When is kick-off? 16.30 (GMT)
Where is it being played? Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
TV channel? Sky Sports Main Event (UK), Peacock Premium (US)

When Tottenham thumped Manchester United 6-1 earlier this season, it looked as if Jose Mourinho was the saviour in north London and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was heading out of a job. Oh, how the tables have turned.

Spurs go into this one sixth in the table, and look more fragile than ever with the wounds of their Europa League exit still wide open. United, meanwhile, sit comfortably in second, having just taken control of their quarter-final tie with Granada.

The narrative is strong in this one. It's Mourinho vs United…..AAAAND IT'S LIVE!

Prediction: Tottenham 1-2 Manchester United

Sheffield Utd vs Arsenal

Wilder and Arteta meet again at Bramall Lane
Wilder and Arteta meet again at Bramall Lane | Pool/Getty Images

When is kick-off? 19.00 (GMT)
Where is it being played? Bramall Lane
TV channel? BT Sport 1 (UK), Peacock Premium (US)

Sheffield United is fast becoming the fixture everyone in the Premier League dreads. Not because they pose any kind of substantial threat, but because surely we won't be the ones to lose to them?

The Blades have successfully evaded Derby's unwanted Premier League low points record, but that's about all they have to shout about after a disaster of a season. They sit rooted to the bottom of the table, and are still sinking like a stone, having lost seven of their last eight matches.

That being the case, it would be very Arsenal to slip to a defeat at Bramall Lane, but Mikel Arteta's side should have enough to end their own poor run in Yorkshire.

Prediction: Sheffield United 0-2 Arsenal

Monday 12 April

West Brom vs Southampton

Matheus Pereira, Sam Allardyce
West Brom Big Sammed their way to a win over Chelsea last time out | Clive Rose/Getty Images

When is kick-off? 18.00 (GMT)
Where is it being played? The Hawthorns
TV channel? Sky Sports Main Event (UK), fuboTV (US)

Not exactly the most inspiring one to kick off Monday Night Football, but West Brom vs Southampton is indeed a game that will take place.

They're two of the worst sides in the Premier League on form. but each go in buoyed by strong results last weekend. West Brom smashed ten-man Chelsea 5-2, while Southampton came back from 2-0 down to beat Burnley and ease their fears of being dragged into the mire at the foot of the table.

The Baggies are desperate here and need a win to stand any chance of clawing their way out of the drop zone. Win, and they may only be two points behind Fulham. Anything else, though, and it gets even more difficult to see a way out for Big Sam and his troops.

Prediction: West Brom 2-2 Southampton

Brighton vs Everton

Brighton vs Everton rounds out the fixtures
Brighton vs Everton rounds out the fixtures | PETER BYRNE/Getty Images

When is kick-off? 20.15 (GMT)
Where is it being played? The Amex
TV channel? Sky Sports Main Event (UK), Peacock Premium (US)

Rounding things out on Monday evening, both Brighton and Everton could really do with a win to aid their respective causes ahead of the run-in.

Brighton, just three points ahead of Newcastle, are wary of being dragged into a fight they really don't want to be involved in. 15 points higher up, meanwhile, Everton have rivals Liverpool in their sights, and refuse to lie down as they battle for a top four spot.

Graham Potter vs Carlo Ancelotti. Not a matchup we thought we'd be seeing at any point in the space-time continuum, but here it is.

Prediction: Brighton 1-3 Everton

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