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'Expert' UK footy tips

2011-10-21 12:25

Cape Town - Each round of the 2011/12 English Premiership season, a panel of Sport24 staff tipsters have a crack at predicting the results - do it yourself, if you like, and see how you compare afterwards.

Our forecasts also offer assistance (if that is the right word!) to those who take part in the SuperBru megapool (Pool code: cropriot) created by Sport24.

Compiled by Rob Houwing (the champion for the last two seasons but a Newcastle supporter for his sins), the others are colleagues Garrin Lambley (very Everton-partial), David Brooke (Manchester United), Dominic Valentine (Liverpool) and a novel newcomer in “converted” rugby devotee Tank Lanning (another of those infernal Red Devils fans).

THE PRIME ATTRACTION

MANCHESTER UNITED v MANCHESTER CITY
Sunday, 14:30

This is Sunday afternoon couch fare at its finest. Not only is it a sizzling Mancunian derby, but it’s truly a table-topping one as well, which cranks up the temperature that bit more. City lead the standings by two points and this really is their chance to prove to doubters (yes, like myself) that they have the bottle to go all the way. They retain a slightly unpredictable characteristic despite their consistency in early season, and I wonder if the Tevez flashpoint has been properly defused yet. Four of us – though two are jaundiced by being Red Devils-partial, it must be said! – see Sir Alex sporting a broad smile afterwards. But the more neutral Garrin, as usual in big match-ups, goes for what he stubbornly feels is the trusty 1-1 good sense ...

Rob: Manchester United 2 Manchester City 0
Garrin: 1-1
David: 1-0
Tank: 3-2
Dominic: 2-1
Last season: 2-1

THE GRUDGE MATCH

QPR v CHELSEA
Sunday, 17:00

This always used to be a fairly glamorous derby in the Swinging, um, Seventies, I remember from my Shoot magazine-reading days as a youngster when expansive sideburns and generous muzzies and mops were often the order of the day. But then this West London rivalry slipped rather into the musty cellar for many years because of QPR’s exit from the top flight. I read somewhere that this is the first Loftus Road league meeting between the two in 15 years, so that fact alone adds some spice to the pot. Rangers are holding pretty firm in mid-table for the moment, but I sense that the Blues, very much in the title running in third, will whistle through this match. Most of my colleagues view it as closer ... but all tip the Chelsea three-pointer nevertheless. 

Rob: QPR 0 Chelsea 3
Garrin: 0-2
David: 0-1
Tank: 0-1
Dominic: 1-2
Last season: Not applicable

THE DESPERATE DUEL

BOLTON v SUNDERLAND
Saturday, 16:00

As a staunch Toon man my heart bleeds, of course, for the current plight of arch-rivals Sunderland! My Black Cats-crazy father-in-law insisted to me in pre-season that Steve Bruce had invested shrewdly in new players, but still we await any significant positive effect, don’t we? They are restricted to 17th spot on the table with a mere six points to show thus far, although they did run Arsenal rather close in London last weekend. Bolton are a notch below and will be motivated to avenge last season’s 1-2 home reverse – I believe they might nick it, especially as they come off the tonic of a victory on the road (at Wigan). David agrees.

Rob: Bolton 2 Sunderland 1
Garrin: 1-1
David: 1-0
Tank: 1-1
Dominic:1-1
Last season: 1-2

THE OTHERS

WOLVES v SWANSEA
Saturday, 13:45


Rob: Wolves 1 Swansea 0
Garrin: 2-1
David: 2-0
Tank: 1-1
Dominic: 1-1
Last season: Not applicable

ASTON VILLA v WEST BROM
Saturday, 16:00


Rob: Aston Villa 2 West Brom 1
Garrin: 2-1
David: 2-1
Tank: 2-0
Dominic: 2-0
Last season: 2-1

NEWCASTLE v WIGAN
Saturday, 16:00


Rob: Newcastle 1 Wigan 0
Garrin: 2-1
David: 2-0
Tank: 2-1
Dominic: 2-0
Last season: 2-2

LIVERPOOL v NORWICH
Saturday, 18:30


Rob: Liverpool 2 Norwich 0
Garrin: 2-0
David:2-0
Tank: 2-0
Dominic: 3-1
Last season: Not applicable

ARSENAL v STOKE
Sunday, 14:30


Rob: Arsenal 2 Stoke 0
Garrin: 2-0
David: 2-0
Tank:1-0
Dominic 1-0
Last season: 1-0

FULHAM v EVERTON
Sunday, 14:30


Rob: Fulham 0 Everton 0
Garrin: 1-1
David: 1-1
Tank: 1-1
Dominic: 1-0
Last season: 0-0

BLACKBURN v TOTTENHAM
Sunday, 16:00


Rob: Blackburn 1 Tottenham 1
Garrin: 1-2
David: 0-1
Tank: 0-1
Dominic: 0-1
Last season: 0-1

LEADERBOARD

Under our traditional, in-house scoring system for the five Sport24 staff featured here, Tank stays narrowly top after some “trading” in a particularly tight range last weekend – three of the panel (the top three, in fact) earned a dozen points each, whilst Garrin netted 10 and yours truly, in a rather improved performance, still annoyingly brought up the rear with nine!

66 Tank (12 points in last round)
64 Dominic (12)
61 David (12)
56 Garrin (10)
44 Rob (9)

*In the broad, Sport24.co.za pool on SuperBru, which sports 1,251 players, “Graham MS” has taken the lead with 75.80 points, followed by “Serb” with 75.25. The yellow cap for best performance in the last round belongs to “Black emperor”.

Sport24