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Ontheminute.com: Premier League preview - Week 24

Premier League preview - Week 24

Published: 03.02.12 / Written by: David Gold

Key battles, players to watch and talking points, check out our preview of the Premier League action this week!

Arsenal v Blackburn

Key Battle: Arsenal are not in good form and Robin van Persie must get the better of Chris Samba to restore their fortunes

Player to Watch: Theo Walcott has been disappointing of late and will be needed to find his form and help van Persie score goals

Talking Point: Can Arsenal finally win their first league match of 2012?

Prediction: 2-1

Norwich v Bolton

Key Battle: Grant Holt will be up against Zat Knight and their duel could be key to which way this particular contest goes

Player to Watch: Steve Morison has been in fine form for much of the season and Norwich will hope he can continue in that vain.

Talking Point: Bolton are improving but Norwich are a tough team to play against

Prediction: 0-0

QPR v Wolves

Key Battle: The Emmanuel Frimpong v Joey Barton tussle could be fascinating as Frimpong’s club Arsenal have been victims of Barton’s over the top nature regularly in recent times

Player to Watch: Djibril Cisse was superb on his debut against Aston Villa and may continue in that way here

Talking Point: Wolves are in awful form and QPR look on the up

Prediction: 3-0

Stoke v Sunderland

Key Battle: Ryan Shawcross is the heart of Stoke’s aggressive defence and he will be charged with keeping out Nicklas Bendtner.

Player to Watch: Sebastien Sessegnon has been arguably Sunderland’s best player this season – how will he perform at Stoke?

Talking Point: Not the kind of game anyone will want to watch. A direct team who play long balls to wingers against a direct team who play long balls straight to their forwards.

Prediction: 0-0

West Brom v Swansea

Key Battle: Peter Odemwingie will look to get the goals for West Brom and Ashley Williams will have to keep him out

Player to Watch: Leon Britton, statistically one of Europe’s best passers of the ball, could dictate play for the visitors.

Talking Point: Swansea have a poor away record but WBA have an even worse home one – away win?

Prediction: 0-1

Wigan v Everton

Key Battle: Mohamed Diame is back from African Nations Cup duty and will be up against Marouane Fellaini in midfield

Player to Watch: Landon Donovan has been useful and setting up goals since his return to Merseyside

Talking Point: Donovan, Leon Osman and Steven Pienaar’s return mean Everton have some of their creativity back, but Wigan are tough to beat

Prediction: 1-0

Man City v Fulham

Key Battle: Yaya Toure is still away so Gareth Barry will be tasked with keeping the ball up against Steven Sidwell.

Player to Watch: Clint Dempsey is the man in form but Bryan Ruiz’s creativity has been key to Fulham’s recent performances

Talking Point: Man City have not been good of late and will hope to get back on form against Fulham, but Martin Jol’s side are underrated.

Prediction: 1-2

Newcastle v Aston Villa

Key Battle: Fabricio Collocini will be tasked with keeping out Darren Bent for Aston Villa.

Player to Watch: Papiss Cisse could make his debut for Newcastle and his form could be key for them in their European charge

Talking Point: Newcastle are enjoying a fine season – can Villa disrupt their form?

Prediction: 2-0

Chelsea v Man Utd

Key Battle: Antonio Valencia has been superb of late and he will be up against a make shift left back in Ashley Cole’s absence – possibly David Luiz, Ryan Bertrand or Jose Bosingwa

Player to Watch: Juan Mata is Chelsea’s creative force and his ability to make chances will be pivotal

Talking Point: United are in decent form whilst Chelsea have been poor recently – away win?

Prediction: 1-1

Liverpool v Tottenham

Key Battle: Gareth Bale rampages down the left and he could expose Glen Johnson on that flank for Liverpool

Player to Watch: Craig Bellamy has been superb of late for Liverpool – can he keep up his good form?

Talking Point: Luis Suarez returns for Liverpool after an eight game ban – will he return with a bang?

Prediction: 2-1

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