In-form Leicester go to Anfield on a high after hammering Newcastle last weekend, but can they end the Reds’ flawless start?
“Leicester have done very well,” says BBC football expert Mark Lawrenson. “We know how good Jamie Vardy is up front and of course Foxes boss Brendan Rodgers is going back to his old club, which gives this game an extra edge.
“Rodgers will be thinking his side can get at Liverpool after watching Red Bull Salzburg score three times on Wednesday night, but it is the other end where I think they will struggle.
“I look at Leicester defensively and I do not see them holding out.”
Lawro is making predictions for all 380 top-flight matches this season, against a variety of guests.
This week he is up against athletics legend and BBC pundit Michael Johnson.
Johnson, who also runs his own performance training company, recently met up with Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino to share some of his sporting knowledge.
“We have worked with many teams in the past – Arsenal, Manchester United and some of the Brazilian clubs,” Johnson told BBC Sport.
“We focus on athletic development, away from the skill of the sport.
“It was fantastic visit to Spurs to see how they operate, and great to talk about how they are integrating athletic development into their academy and building players, and helping young players achieve their potential.
“Mauricio has a real winning mindset and understands the psychology around players, and how motivation is extremely important.
“We talked a lot about how that approach is very different with each athlete, because each athlete is motivated differently. He shows a keen understanding of that and I think that is why he has been so successful.
|2019 World Athletics Championships|
|Venue: Khalifa International Stadium, Doha Dates: 27 September-6 October|
|Coverage: Watch live on BBC TV, BBC iPlayer and BBC Sport website and app; Listen live on BBC Radio 5 Live; Live streams, clips and text commentary online.|
|Premier League predictions – week eight|
|Brighton v Tottenham||x-x||0-2||1-3|
|Burnley v Everton||x-x||2-1||2-1|
|Liverpool v Leicester||x-x||2-1||4-2|
|Norwich v Aston Villa||x-x||1-1||2-0|
|Watford v Sheff Utd||x-x||2-1||0-2|
|West Ham v Crystal Palace||x-x||2-0||2-0|
|Arsenal v Bournemouth||x-x||2-0||1-0|
|Man City v Wolves||x-x||3-0||3-1|
|Southampton v Chelsea||x-x||1-2||0-3|
|Newcastle v Man Utd||x-x||1-1||0-1|
A correct result (picking a win, draw or defeat) is worth 10 points. The exact score earns 40 points.
All kick-offs 15:00 BST unless stated.
Brighton v Tottenham (12:30 BST)
It would not surprise me if Tottenham manager Pochettino leaves the club in the near future.
Since the summer, some of the things he has said – like when he talked about how he is ‘only the coach’ and has no say in transfers – makes it feel to me like he is in the process of a long break-up.
I have thought for a while that Pochettino looks tired and how it looks like being Spurs manager has become a chore for him – but maybe he does not need time out of football, just out of Tottenham.
Spurs paid the price for chasing their Champions League game against Bayern on Tuesday when they were 4-2 down, and ended up conceding seven goals in total.
But I still think they will go to Brighton and win.
Spurs have got some very good players. Yes, they have had a stinker but surely there will be a reaction this weekend.
And the Seagulls have got problems of their own, with only two points from their past six games.
Brighton manager Graham Potter is reaching the stage where he might need to rethink his philosophy about playing good football for the sake of picking up some points.
Lawro’s prediction: 0-2
Michael’s prediction: 1-3
Burnley v Everton
Everton lost to Manchester City last time out but I thought they did all right. At least they had a go.
That is part of the problem, though, because we have not seen enough performances like that from them.
It is strange how they did not do the same against Sheffield United in their previous home game, for example.
Goals remain an issue for the Toffees, and that situation is not going to change anytime soon.
I know Dominic Calvert-Lewin scored against City but they do not carry enough of a threat up front, especially away from home where they have only managed one goal in three matches this season.
They have also picked up only one point on the road – a 0-0 draw at Palace on the opening day, before defeats by Aston Villa and Bournemouth – which does not exactly give me great belief they will get anything at Turf Moor either.
You know what you are going to get from Burnley, and I don’t think Everton are going to be able to deal with it.
Lawro’s prediction: 2-1
Michael’s prediction: 2-1
Liverpool v Leicester
I appreciate that Leicester are dangerous when they go forward, but I don’t think they are good enough at the back to get themselves a result at Anfield.
There do seem to be a few issues in the Liverpool defence right now, but there is nothing wrong with the front three.
Leicester will have to do more in attack than they managed at Old Trafford last month, when they lost to Manchester United. Apart from forcing David de Gea into an early save, they did not really do enough against a team in transition.
Liverpool will offer a much tougher test and it feels to me like Leicester will have to be at the very top of their game and take every chance that comes their way if they are going to get something out of this one.
Lawro’s prediction: 2-1
Michael’s prediction: 4-2
Norwich v Aston Villa
You can tell I have got my doubts abut Norwich because I have predicted them to lose every game so far this season, but their home form is actually very good.
I do worry about the Canaries, because they beat Manchester City and played brilliantly, then got beaten easily at Burnley and Crystal Palace without looking like they were going to trouble either team.
Their away performances have to get a lot better, because their survival hopes cannot rely exclusively on what they can do at Carrow Road. If it is all about that, then eventually the pressure will tell.
Another problem Norwich have is at the back. They have conceded 16 goals in seven games this season, which means they usually have to score at least two just to get a point.
On paper, you would expect them to beat an Aston Villa side who have lost three out of three on the road this season – but results alone do not tell the full story for Dean Smith’s side.
There were in winning positions with less than 20 minutes to go at Tottenham and Arsenal, but lost both games, and were unlucky not to get anything from their defeat by Crystal Palace too after having a late equaliser controversially ruled out.
Both teams were promoted last season and have had some big lessons about how hard the Premier League is.
There are reasons why they are both in the bottom four and they need to improve if they are going to climb the table.
As far as Saturday goes, I am going to go for a 1-1 draw because I cannot see either side keeping a clean sheet.
Lawro’s prediction: 1-1
Michael’s prediction: 2-0
Watford v Sheff Utd
After last week’s defeat by Wolves, Watford are now the only top-flight team without a win.
I am not sure exactly what is wrong with the Hornets because they look a shadow of the side they were last season, despite having most of the same players that finished 11th.
Sheffield United showed against Liverpool last week that they will give everybody a game but I just have a funny feeling this will be the game where Watford stop the rot.
That has nothing to do with form, obviously. It is more that we know how good the Hornets players can be, and this might be the week where things start to happen for them and new manager Quique Sanchez Flores.
Lawro’s prediction: 2-1
Michael’s prediction: 0-2
West Ham v Crystal Palace (17:30 BST)
Both of these teams are going well and West Ham, in particular, have impressed me.
They seem to have added a bit of steel at the back compared to last season and Andriy Yarmolenko has shown how good he is since returning from his long-term injury.
The Hammers have more to offer in attack than Palace do, which is why I think they will get the win here. I just can’t really see the Eagles causing them too much trouble.
Lawro’s prediction: 2-0
Michael’s prediction: 2-0
Arsenal v Bournemouth (14:00 BST)
Arsenal were pretty awful against Manchester United on Monday but they will look at a draw at Old Trafford as being a good point, regardless of United’s current position.
Bournemouth have made a bright start to the season but I don’t look at this game as one where they will expect to get anything – they have not picked up a point in four previous visits to the Emirates, and I don’t think that run will end this weekend.
Yes, the Cherries will have chances, but Arsenal are going to have a lot of the ball and they have the quality in their attack to make it count.
Lawro’s prediction: 2-0
Michael’s prediction: 1-0
Man City v Wolves (14:00 BST)
Wolves play in Turkey in the Europa League on Thursday night so this is a tough turnaround before they travel to play the defending champions.
Manchester City made a big statement with their win last weekend, because a lot of people were expecting their makeshift defence to crack when Everton had a go at them.
I would argue that going to Goodison Park and winning was one of their best results so far this season, and I think they will find things a lot easier on Sunday.
Wolves are better when they come forward than they are when they sit in, and I am expecting City to find a way through them.
Lawro’s prediction: 3-0
Michael’s prediction: 3-1
Southampton v Chelsea (14:00 BST)
Chelsea have had a good week, with wins over Brighton and Lille, but they are still a side that gives chances away.
Frank Lampard’s side are improving week by week but, at the moment, they are still a team that can be vulnerable in different periods of games.
That is what I am expecting to happen at St Mary’s. The Blues should win, but Southampton will have some opportunities too, and it is going to be close.
I was actually expecting more from Saints this season in their first full campaign under Ralph Hasenhuttl, but so far they don’t look like they have got much better.
They are still waiting for their first home win of the season, and I don’t think they will get it this week.
Lawro’s prediction: 1-2
Michael’s prediction: 0-3
Newcastle v Man Utd (16:30 BST)
Newcastle waved the white flag at Leicester on Sunday.
They completely capitulated in the second half and I am sure Magpies manager Steve Bruce will have made it clear to his players this week just how unacceptable that was.
I would expect to see a reaction from them, and I also think some of the Newcastle fans who stayed away from their draw with Brighton will be back for this game.
Manchester United huffed and puffed their way through their draw with Arsenal on Monday and never really looked like they were good enough to take full control of the game.
I understand why United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is saying it is going to take time for his side to turn things around but, as well as having a long-term plan, they need to get back to winning ways soon.
Lawro’s prediction: 1-1
Michael’s prediction: 0-1
Lawro was speaking to BBC Sport’s Chris Bevan
How did Lawro do last week?
From the last set of Premier League fixtures, Lawro got eight correct results, including three exact scores, out of 10 matches for a total of 170 points, his highest score of the season so far.
He beat former Tour de France winner Geraint Thomas, who got six correct results, with one exact score, for a total of 90 points.
|+/- DENOTE POSITION DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LAWRO’S TABLE AND ACTUAL POSITION|
GUEST LEADERBOARD 2019-20
|104||Lawro (average after seven weeks)|
|90||Helen Housby, Jo Harten, Geraint Thomas|
|50||Chelcee Grimes, Reece Parkinson, Sam Warburton|
|Total scores after week seven|
|Lawro v Guests|