Due to a lack of police resources (and a train strike that is no longer going ahead), there are only seven Premier League fixtures this weekend.
To make matters more confusing, the postponement of Gameweek 7 means we head into Gameweek 8 with teams having only played six games!
And there’s two Friday night fixtures this week? Goodness gracious, it’s all gone topsy-turvy in the Premier League.
Here are some predictions for the upcoming weekend.
Friday 16 September
Aston Villa vs Southampton
Sky Sports’ pick for Friday Night Football comes from Villa Park, where Aston Villa entertain Southampton.
Steven Gerrard’s men were controversially denied a stunning late win against Manchester City last time out, and the Villa boss is probably wary that he’ll now need a positive result against the Saints to keep his critics at bay over the international break.
While Gerrard is in trouble, Ralph Hasenhuttl looks rejuvenated in part due to some of the fresh blood in his young Southampton side. This might be a step too far for them, however.
Prediction: Aston Villa 2-1 Southampton
Nottingham Forest vs Fulham
Across the midlands, Nottingham Forest welcome Fulham to the City Ground in a battle of two sides promoted from the Championship.
Marco Silva bemoaned the Whites’ summer spending prior to the beginning of the season, but he has managed to get quite a tune out of his charges thus far.
The same can’t be said for Steve Cooper, who is still trying to figure out how to get 22 new signings reading from the same hymn sheet and has since been linked with the vacant Brighton job.
Prediction: Nottingham Forest 1-1 Fulham
Saturday 17 September
Wolves vs Manchester City
Saturday’s early kick-off sees Wolves host champions Manchester City.
All eyes will be on whether Bruno Lage bites the bullet and throws new signing Diego Costa into the fold after completing his move to Molineux.
Wolves might need just about any form of s**thousery they can find in order to contain Erling Haaland, who has now scored 13 goals in just nine games for City. Expect him to add to that tally here.
Prediction: Wolves 0-2 Manchester City
Newcastle United vs Bournemouth
This weekend’s only 3pm match will see Eddie Howe take on former team Bournemouth with his Newcastle United side, who sit level in the standings on seven points.
While there remains plenty of optimism on Tyneside, it’s gone under the radar that the Magpies are without a league win since the opening day of the season.
Nevertheless, the Cherries and interim boss Gary O’Neill have a huge task on their hands despite a recent return to form
Prediction: Newcastle United 2-0 Bournemouth
Tottenham Hotspur vs Leicester City
Spurs were beaten for the first time this season in Tuesday’s late 2-0 loss at Sporting CP in the Champions League, with Antonio Conte firing a warning to some of his players that they need to step up.
Across the dugout, Brendan Rodgers will surely be fearing the sack should the Foxes lose and enter the international break with just one point from their opening seven matches.
Prediction: Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 Leicester City
Sunday 18 September
Brentford vs Arsenal
Taking place in a revised 12pm slot, Brentford welcome Arsenal to the Gtech Community Stadium for the first time since the opening day of the 2021/22 season.
The Gunners fell to the Bees on a famous night in west London 13 months ago, but a lot has changed since then.
Brentford will be buoyed by their fast start to the season and Ivan Toney’s England call-up, while Mikel Arteta’s men remain top of the table and would relish to be in that spot ahead of the north London derby on October 1.
Prediction: Brentford 1-2 Arsenal
Everton vs West Ham United
The final Premier League fixture before the September international break pits Everton against West Ham United.
The Toffees are one of two sides in the division without a win so far this season, though their record of four draws from six games and superior goal difference means they sit just above the drop zone.
Their visitors, meanwhile, are mired in 18th after a rather slow start (and undeserving loss at Chelsea a couple of weeks ago), and David Moyes will have his eyes on three points on his return to Goodison Park.
Prediction: Everton 0-0 West Ham United