Sean Dyche

(Pre-Derby) Premier League Power Rankings

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Which clubs are surging? Which are struggling?

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The last time we visited PST’s Premier League club power rankings, there were upstarts high up in the table.

And this time of season is perhaps the most fun period to evaluate clubs in this way, with teams having seen most of the league opposition once yet not at a point where the standings are an accurate depiction of team power.

In a lot ways, we’re looking at power rankings as a measuring stick. Combining recent form with table standing, it’s a bit like saying, “Who’d win in a neutral site match today?” while also keeping in mind that liking Crystal Palace’s recent form more than Spurs doesn’t mean the bottom three Eagles should be eighth.

It’s also a good time to take stock, with three emotional derbies this weekend set to sway the minds and hearts of fan bases: West Ham hosts Chelsea, Everton is off to Liverpool, and Man City visits Manchester United.

Below you will find the latest batch of club Power Rankings as we rank PL clubs in terms of where they’re at right now with their form.


  1. Manchester City (1) — Still unbeaten, and about to contest one of the season’s two biggest league matches against a derby mate missing its most influential player.
  2. Manchester United (7) — With Paul Pogba out, better hope David De Gea is ready to double up on historic performances. Can one more day’s rest help close the gap?
  3. Chelsea (5) — Quietly humming along, with Eden Hazard back to his best.
  4. Arsenal (12) — Lost to Manchester United thanks to a trio of defensive gaffes which, along with De Gea, betrayed a dominant, possessing, attacking display.
  5. Liverpool (10) — Waxed Brighton to continue long unbeaten run into first Merseyside Derby of season.
  6. Leicester City (13) — Don’t look now, but have beaten Burnley and Spurs in consecutive weeks to slide back into European contention. Can they keep Riyad Mahrez in January?
  7. Watford (9) — Consistency in defense is key, as Everton and Man Utd losses came despite two goals in each.
  8. Tottenham Hotspur (4) — The slump is real, as Spurs are winless in four league matches and four points behind the Top Four.
  9. Burnley (2)– Sean Dyche‘s men have lost two of three, still challenged in attack.
  10. Everton (20) — Took momentum from beating West Ham in the last match of David Unsworth‘s caretaker stint right into a win over struggling Huddersfield Town, but Sam Allardyce should be wary of judging results against reeling competition.
  11. Southampton (16) — Charlie Austin is back on the score sheet and something feels right about that. Is he the finishing answer for Saints’ plethora of providers?
  12. Bournemouth (14) — A team that’s lost just once in its last five also happens to have just two points from its last three. Glass half what?
  13. Stoke City — It’s hard to give anyone credit for halting a slide when its stopped by beating Swansea.
  14. Crystal Palace (15) — Would be even higher were it not still in the drop zone despite a fourth-straight result. Have lost just twice since Roy Hodgson took over at Selhurst Park.
  15. Newcastle United (8) — Need January difference makers in a bad way, as steady unit remains unspectacular.
  16. Huddersfield Town (3) — Four-straight losses include Bournemouth and Everton in David Wagner‘s first real Premier League morale challenge.
  17. Brighton and Hove Albion (6) — Liverpool blowout not nearly as troubling as home draws to Palace and Stoke.
  18. West Bromwich Albion (17) — Alan Pardew‘s men showed more style, but still winless since August.
  19. West Ham United (19) — Credit where it’s due: West Ham took Man City to the wire.
  20. Swansea City (18) — Aside from a visit to Chelsea, this was supposed to be a fixture run to move the Welsh side up the table, not down.

Top Premier League storylines — Week 15

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As the calendar readies itself to turn from November to December, the meaty portion of the Premier League season is finally upon us. The next six weeks, beginning this weekend and winding down in mid-January, will go a long, long way toward shaping the final PL table at the end of the season.

[ MORE: JPW’s PL predictions | TV, stream schedule for the weekend ]

Here are five of the biggest PL storylines to follow on Saturday and Sunday…

When Will Man City lose drop points?

The winning streak is up to 12 games now, which is one short of Chelsea’s high-water mark of last season — a good omen, surely, as the Blues went on to win the PL title with relative ease. While the results remain very impressive, it’s the manner in which Pep Guardiola‘s side cruised to a dozen straight victories: a combined score of 40-12 during the run. Up next is West Ham United, who visit the Etihad Stadium on Sunday (Watch live, 11 a.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com).


A top-four rivalry once again

As clubs like Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool (very fluidly) moved into and out of the PL’s top-four in recent years, their respective progressions came at the expense of Arsenal and Manchester United during various seasons, who face off at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday. Last season, it was Arsenal who stumbled to a fifth-place finish, while Man United have finished outside the top-four in three of the last four years. This weekend’s meeting between the rejuvenated sides (Watch live, 12:30 p.m. ET, on NBC and NBCSports.com) is, at least for a day, a battle of top-four sides once again, just as it was year after year during the (earlier) days of Arsene Wenger and Sir Alex Ferguson. Each side has won three in a row and risen to climbed to fourth and second in the PL table, respectively.


The new-manager boost, just in time?

Everton and West Bromwich Albion, who enter the weekend in 13th and 17th places, respectively, each announced this week a new permanent manager set to take charge of their first game this weekend. For Everton, Sam Allardyce will debut against Huddersfield Town at Goodison Park on Saturday (Watch live, 10 a.m. ET, on NBC Sports Gold); West Brom, now under the level-headed lead of Alan Pardew, host bottom-of-the-table Crystal Palace at the Hawthorns (Watch live, 10 a.m. ET, on NBC Sports Gold).


Burnley in 6th… can they keep it up?

Burnley finishing in the top-four this season had to have been almost — I said, almost — as unlikely as Leicester City’s title win two seasons ago. Yet here we are over one-third of the way through the 2017-18 season, and Sean Dyche‘s side sits sixth — one point back of fifth-place Liverpool, three back of Arsenal, and one ahead of seventh-place Tottenham. As coincidence would have it, the Clarets are set for a trip to the King Power Stadium to take on Claude Puel‘s Leicester on Saturday (Watch live, 10 a.m. ET, on NBC Sports Gold). Winners of four of their last five, Burnley have conceded just two goals since taking a hammering at the hands of Man City well over a month ago.


Time for Spurs to stop the rot

Spurs are in semi-serious danger of falling away from the top-four race at an extremely point in the season. Having one just one of their last five PL games, and lost three straight away from home, Saturday’s trip to Vicarage Road, where they’ll take on eighth-place Watford (Watch live, 10 a.m. ET, on CNBC and NBCSports.com), is inarguably a must-win game for Mauricio Pochettino‘s side. A loss to Marco Silva‘s Hornets — who are quite the story themselves — coupled with Arsenal and Liverpool victories would see Spurs fall seven points back of Arsenal and five back of Liverpool. The busiest six-week period of the season lies directly ahead, and Pochettino is already lamenting fatigue throughout his squad. You can see how things could quickly spiral out of control and get away from Spurs.

Bournemouth 1-2 Burnley: Clarets up to sixth

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  • Bournemouth haven’t beaten a side starting that day inside the top seven of the Premier League since they beat Liverpool last December; drawing three and losing eight of these matches since, including losing all four this season
  • Burnley have collected 14 points from away games this season
  • Wood, Brady with the goals for Burnley

Burnley grabbed yet another away win as their record-breaking start to the Premier League season continued.

The Clarets beat Bournemouth 2-1 at the Vitality Stadium with goals from Chris Wood and Robbie Brady in either half doing the damage.

Josh King pulled one back for Bournemouth but the Clarets held on to secure another superb win as they rose above Spurs and into sixth place, with the Cherries slipping to 14th place.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Burnley came closest to taking the lead early on with Ben Mee heading a set piece to the back post and Chris Wood nodding onto the crossbar following early Bournemouth pressure.

Wood went close once again in the first half as Phil Bardsley‘s cross to the back post found the big New Zealand striker but Asmir Begovic palmed his header away from the top corner.

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Callum Wilson went close with a hooked volley in an open, entertaining first half. Burnley looked like they would take the lead once again as Wood’s mishit shot fell straight to Jeff Hendricks but Steve Cook threw himself in front of Hendricks’ shot with a superb block to keep the score level.

Wood eventually opened the scoring with his fifth goal of the season. Robbie Brady’s low cross found Wood who finished to make it 1-0.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ] 

Burnley kept pouring forward in the second half and Brady made it 2-0 as Johann Berg Gudmundsson played him in and the Republic of Ireland international finished emphatically. Clarets in dreamland.

Bournemouth made things interesting with just over 10 minutes to go as Jermain Defoe‘s shot from a tight angle was cleared and King tapped home to make it 2-1.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Burnley held on late on despite pressure from Bournemouth with Sean Dyche‘s side continuing their miracle.

Allardyce, Everton finalizing terms; Unsworth in charge vs. West Ham

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After 37 days without a manager, Everton have finally settled on a new boss: Sam Allardyce is in the final stages of finalizing terms with the club and will be named the next Toffees manager in the next 24 to 48 hours.

[ MORE: Pardew named new West Brom boss ]

Everton made the announcement on Wednesday, hours before the scheduled kickoff of their Premier League clash with fellow strugglers West Ham United (Watch live, 3 p.m. ET, on NBC Sports Gold) at Goodison Park. The Toffees, who fired Ronald Koeman on Oct. 23 and have been led by interim boss David Unsworth ever since, enter the unlikely relegation battle in 17th place; West Ham sit 18th. Unsworth, who has amassed a record of 1W-1D-2L in the PL, will remain in charge against the Hammers.

In the days following Koeman’s departure, Allardyce was quick to withdraw his name from consideration for the job, but as Everton grew more and more desperate — after failing to land Burnley’s Sean Dyche or Watford’s Marco Silva, among others perhaps — owner Farhad Moshiri returned to one of the more obvious candidates this week as it became more and more apparent that the club must quickly pick itself or face a genuine relegation fight between now and May.

Allardyce has long been lauded a master battler of relegation, but two questions come to mind when considering that reputation: 1) how did it get this bad, that a relegation specialist is required; and, more importantly, 2) assuming Allardyce keeps them up, is he the one to rebuild this thing from the ground up starting in May?

Premier League Wednesday: Intrigue throughout

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Midweek Premier League action continues Wednesday with four Top Four hopefuls aiming to increase their stock following Spurs’ surprising loss to Leicester City.

Manchester United won, too, hoping for some help from Southampton and others in a bid to chase down leaders Manchester City.

[ LIVE: Stream every Premier League game ]

That’s where we’ll begin the Wednesday preview:

Manchester City vs. Southampton — 3 p.m. ET (NBCSN)

The Premier League leaders’ table lead again shrank to five points, but City won’t have a problem with the onus being on them. What they may have a problem with is Southampton, who busted out from its offensive doldrums against Everton on Sunday.

Arsenal vs. Huddersfield Town — 2:45 p.m. ET

Arsene Wenger‘s like some sort of Top Four zombie; Each year many assume he hasn’t done enough in the transfer market and has lost his hold on the modern player, and each year he rebounds from the season’s early nadir. Now Arsenal can move four points clear of North London rivals Spurs, and keep pressure on Chelsea and Manchester United.

The visitors are no slouches, however, and Huddersfield Town has given a lot of good teams runs for their money this season. Circle this one, even if it is at the Emirates Stadium; Should be a beauty.

Stoke City vs. Liverpool — 3 p.m. ET

Jurgen Klopp‘s Liverpool is yet to lose at Anfield this season, but boasts just two wins and eight points from six Premier League away matches; Stoke scores like a top half side but has conceded more goals than anyone other than Everton. Expect goals at the bet365 Stadium (which of course bodes well for nil-nil).

Chelsea vs. Swansea City — 2:45 p.m. ET

The Blues have dropped points five times this season, and three of those occasions came at Stamford Bridge. Wednesday’s visitors are actually better away from home, but that’s about the only advantage Paul Clement‘s Swans have considering the depth of Chelsea.

(AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

Everton vs. West Ham United — 3 p.m. ET

Sam Allardyce is reportedly close to become Everton’s new boss, but David Unsworth‘s the man in charge of a visit from Big Sam’s former charges. Completing the bizarre landscape is the return of David Moyes to Goodison Park. A win boosts West Ham out of the drop zone and pushes Everton into it.

Bournemouth vs. Burnley — 2:45 p.m. ET

The visitors could finish as high as fifth if they can manage a road win at the Vitality Stadium; Sean Dyche is staying at Turf Moor despite interest from plenty of Premier League sides, and now looks set to compete for a place in Europe. That may sound funny, but the Clarets have picked up results against Chelsea, Liverpool, and Spurs, and could’ve had a point from Arsenal should James Tarkowski not shoved Aaron Ramsey in stoppage time. Can they avoid a slip up against Eddie Howe‘s Bournemouth?