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Matchweek 18 – All the Games, All the Officials; and the predictions

by Andrew Crawshaw

Here are the PL Fixtures and the appointed officials courtesy of premierleague.com :-

Kick-offs are 15:00 GMT unless stated otherwise.

Friday 21 December

20:00 Wolves v Liverpool
Referee: Craig Pawson
Assistants: Lee Betts, Richard West
Fourth official: Michael Oliver

Saturday 22 December

12:30 Arsenal v Burnley
Referee: Kevin Friend
Assistants: Matthew Wilkes, Derek Eaton
Fourth official: Simon Hooper

AFC Bournemouth v Brighton
Referee: Mike Dean
Assistants: Darren Cann, Dan Robathan
Fourth official: Graham Scott

Chelsea v Leicester City
Referee: Lee Probert
Assistants: Simon Beck, Adrian Holmes
Fourth official: Paul Tierney

Huddersfield Town v Southampton
Referee: Stuart Attwell
Assistants: Ian Hussin, Andy Halliday
Fourth official: Jonathan Moss

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Man City v Crystal Palace
Referee: Andre Marriner
Assistants: Scott Ledger, Harry Lennard
Fourth official: Anthony Taylor

Newcastle United v Fulham
Referee: Martin Atkinson
Assistants: Stephen Child, Gary Beswick
Fourth official: Jeremy Simpson

West Ham United v Watford
Referee: Lee Mason
Assistants: Eddie Smart, Marc Perry
Fourth official: Andy Davies

17:30 Cardiff City v Man Utd
Referee: Michael Oliver
Assistants: Simon Bennett, Mick McDonough
Fourth official: Roger East

Sunday 23 December

16:00 Everton v Tottenham Hotspur
Referee: Paul Tierney (pictured)
Assistants: Adam Nunn, Constantine Hatzidakis
Fourth official: Chris Kavanagh

A rare chance for Anthony Taylor to rest his whistle, only the second matchweek this season he hasn’t been allocated a game as referee.  He can’t go Christmas shopping though as he is on duty at Man City as Fourth Official.

After his craven performance in our match last week Chris Kavanagh is given a rest, but he is back as fourth Official in the Sunday game between Everton and Spurs.

No further teams getting a Fourth visit from a referee – I wonder who will be next?

We have Kevin Friend for the first time this season, I regard him as one of the referees least likely to show a rabid anti-Arsenal bias, mind you that’s not to say he is entirely benign – we only won one of the three matches with him in charge last season, losing at both Bournemouth and United.  We won at home against Brighton.  All three games had a 2 – 1 scoreline.

In 2016/17 we only had him once when we beat Watford 3 – 1 away.  Going back one year further to 2015/16 we had him for three away wins 2 – 0 at both Aston Villa and Bournemouth and 3 – 0 at Swansea.

We need to start quicker and with more intensity.  Hopefully we will be more settled at the back with Centre Backs returning from suspension and injury but it would now appear that we may well be in the middle of a full blown FULL BACK CRISIS, but somehow I suspect that we will find players to start at both right and left back (even if it is Jenkinson and Monreal).

COYG

Previews of forthcoming matches appear on the Football Predictions website

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