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Premier League: Talking points ahead of the weekend

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Arsenal look to solidify their title hopes this weekend Photo 90Mins
Arsenal will look to solidify their title hopes this weekend. Photo/ 90Mins
  • We look at some of the major talking points ahead of the Premier League weekend fixtures.

We look at some of the major talking points ahead of the Premier League weekend fixtures.

Nuno Espirito is back

Nuno Espirito Photo westbridgfordwire

Nuno Espirito. Photo/ Westbridgfordwire

After being appointed manager of Nottingham Forest this week, Nuno Espirito Santo is back in the Premier League. After five losses in six league games, Steve Cooper was fired.

Nuno’s tenure at Tottenham ended abruptly after just 17 games in charge. Before that, he gained experience at Wolves and guided Al-Ittihad to the Saudi Pro League in the previous year. The 49-year-old coach, known for his practical approach, will first need to halt the downward trend in performance before optimizing Forest’s offensive alternatives. Due to injuries, Forest, who currently sits second in the Premier League, is without their top scorer, Taiwo Awoniyi.

The interaction between Morgan Gibbs-White and the new head coach will be interesting to see. The latter was Forest’s Player of the Season in 2022–2023 but hasn’t been able to continue in that role this year. Although the inventive midfielder struggled to make an impression at Molineux under the now-Forest manager, he is familiar with Nuno from their time together at Wolves.

Arsenal can solidify title hopes

With just one point separating the top three going into this weekend’s games, the Premier League’s title battle may be as exciting as we have seen in a long time. Manchester City, which will undoubtedly return from the Club World Cup with fresh determination, is not even included in that three-horse fight.

As we approach this weekend’s pivotal match at Anfield between Arsenal and second-place Liverpool, the Gunners lead the standings. The last time out, the latter lost their perfect home record in a goalless draw with Manchester United, a match that cast doubt on Liverpool’s title chances.

Arsenal, on the other hand, put on an outstanding display in North London to thrash Brighton and appear to be the most confident of the potential the title contenders thus far. While the Gunners are splitting goals this season, Declan Rice has been a major factor in Arsenal’s ascent to the top position. Arsenal seems ready for a run at the league title with the defensive record that is tied for first position in the division.

This weekend’s victory might solidify Arsenal’s status as title favorites. In the Premier League, the North Londoners haven’t triumphed at Liverpool in almost ten years. In their previous ten visits, they have surrendered 34 goals, won zero, and lost seven.

Nkunku is back

Christopher Nkunku Chelsea

Christopher Nkunku. Photo/Sky Sports

Nicolas Jackson’s Premier League debut has undoubtedly been uneventful. For a young player still getting used to the demands of the division, seven goals from 13 starts seems like a respectable return on the surface.

Though he sits fourth in the Premier League for major opportunities missed (11) Jackson has come under fire for his performance this season. It is somewhat comforting that he is ranked below Ollie Watkins (13), and Erling Haaland (17), who are undoubtedly the two finest forwards of the campaign.

Jackson has plenty of time to improve at the age of 22, but he has been forced to learn on the job since Chelsea has no other options. The Senegalese attacker is under even more scrutiny due to Chelsea’s troubled past with center strikers.

With Armando Broja and Christopher Nkunku back from injury, Jackson should feel less pressure. Though Jackson’s adaptation has been better than he may have received credit for considering his inexperience, he might (and should) have performed better on times this season.

What is David Moyes cooking?

David Moyes Photo Hammers News

David Moyes. Photo/ Hammers News

Customs from the past are difficult to break. David Moyes’s longevity has been based on indisputable principles. Effective Moyes teams have been linked to defensive structure, set-piece danger, and a work-rate requirement.

Due to the negative opinions about his leadership, Moyes is an unpopular leader at West Ham. Although he guided the Irons to victory in the Europa Conference League the previous season, some fans still feel that there may be a better opportunity with a more innovative and ambitious strategy.

With the addition of West Ham, the team now has more alternatives to alter that story. The newest performer on the East End is Lucas Paqueta, and Mohammed Kudus joined the group not long after. Jarrod Bowen, meanwhile, has been reimagined as a versatile center forward.

Plenty of West Ham’s offensive options worked against Wolves last weekend. In a 3-0 victory at London Stadium, Paqueta claimed a hat-trick of assists, and Kudus (2) and Bowen found the scoreboard. With Paqueta beginning on the bench, the Hammers were humiliated by Liverpool in midweek when they adopted a defensive strategy and lost 5-1 in the Carabao Cup quarterfinals.

The Hammers play a team that is a point and a position above them this week, Manchester United and are only two points out of the top six. Moyes believes that attacking is maybe the best way to defend this team.

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