Michael Owen makes Premier League predictions for Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea vs Manchester City

Former Manchester United and Liverpool striker working with BT Sport's coverage of the Premier League
Michael Owen has delivered his predictions for the Premier League’s upcoming games (Picture: Getty)

Michael Owen predicts both Manchester United and Arsenal will secure their first wins since the season’s restart over the coming days and has backed Chelsea to hold Manchester City to a draw at Stamford Bridge in his tips for Matchday 31.

Premier League teams have had more than three months without top-flight action to prepare for the run-in and managers will by now hope their players are up to speed from both a mental and physical perspective.

Liverpool’s stalemate with Everton in Sunday’s Merseyside derby at Goodison Park gave second-placed City the opportunity to close the gap to *just* 20 points at the top of the table.

And Pep Guardiola’s side did so in style with a thumping 5-0 victory over Burnley at an empty Etihad on Monday night.

The champions travel to Chelsea on Thursday night and Owen believes the points will be shared in an ‘entertaining’ draw at Stamford Bridge.

‘After hammering Burnley 5-0 on Monday night, Manchester City sent a clear message to everyone that they aren’t going to take their foot off the pedal between now and the end of the season,’ the ex-England striker said in his BetVictor column.

‘They have won six of their last seven matches against Chelsea, in all competitions, but I think this Chelsea side look made of sterner stuff than some of the Chelsea teams of recent times.

‘Chelsea showed real character in coming from a goal down at Aston Villa at the weekend and they have plenty of promising young talent as well as a nice mix of seasoned pros.

‘Both teams have a goal threat everywhere you look and I really do think we could be in for a treat to round off Matchday 31. I’m going for an entertaining 2-2 draw.’

Manchester City v Burnley FC - Premier League
Phil Foden starred as Manchester City thumped Burnley on Monday night (Picture: Getty)

Owen’s former club, Manchester United, play host to Sheffield United on Wednesday for what could be a decisive match in the race for a top-four finish.

Predicting a ‘relatively comfortable’ 2-1 victory for the Red Devils at Old Trafford, Owen said: ‘Manchester United’s point at the Tottenham Hotspur stadium on Friday means that they are now unbeaten in their last 12 games in all competitions (won eight) and have pretty much picked up where they left off prior to the lockdown.

‘Sheffield United on the other hand, will be playing their third game in a week and they certainly haven’t been able to get back to pre-lock-down form.

‘Their 3-0 defeat at the hands of Newcastle United was their biggest loss since losing by a similar score to Middlesbrough back in August 2018.

‘Back to back matches without scoring a goal will undoubtedly have knocked the Blades’ confidence and with a relatively small squad to choose from as well as the absence of on-loan keeper Dean Henderson due to the conditions of his loan move, I fancy Manchester United to continue their impressive form with a relatively comfortable 2-1 home victory.’

Son Heung-min and Bruno Fernandes battle for the ball during Tottenham's Premier League clash with Manchester United
Manchester United and Tottenham shared the points on Friday evening (Picture: Getty)

Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta can be under no illusions at the size of the task now facing him after back-to-back defeats to Manchester City and Brighton since the season’s return.

However, Owen is confident the Gunners can bounce back with three points ahead of their trip to Southampton on Thursday evening.

‘The Arsenal rebuild job looks to be a big one and back to back defeats since the re-start look to have put paid to any hopes they may have had about Champions League qualification,’ he said.

‘I’m sure that Mikel Arteta will have been in no doubt about the size of the task in front of him when he took the manager’s job and will be looking for greater consistency and fewer mistakes between now and the end of the season.

‘Southampton enjoyed a comfortable 3-0 win away at Norwich in their first game after the re-start and only Liverpool and Manchester City have won more away games in the Premier League this season.

‘However, things are not so rosy at home and despite Danny Ings becoming the first Saints player to score more than 15 goals in a Premier League season since James Beattie in 2002-03 I feel that Arsenal will bounce back with an important win.’

Brighton & Hove Albion v Arsenal FC - Premier League
Arsenal are yet to pick up a point since the season’s return (Picture: Getty)

Discussing Crystal Palace’s upcoming trip to Anfield, Owen said: ‘Liverpool picked up another point against Everton which was their first goalless draw in 39 games in the PL and in fact, since their last visit to Goodison Park back in March 2019.

‘That point means, at the time of writing, they now only need 5 more to guarantee their first Premier League title. There’s no doubt that they’re not playing at their fluent best and that was also the case, prior to lock-down.

‘However, they have built such an unassailable lead that winning the title can surely only be a matter of time.

‘Crystal Palace certainly won’t be gifting anything to Liverpool as they are on a great run themselves and will be looking to finish as high in the table as possible.

‘They easily dispatched Bournemouth in their first game back after the break and have now won four Premier League games on the spin. One more would equal the club’s best ever in the competition and would match the exploits of 1992 and 2014.

‘However, I think that Liverpool will have now shaken off any rustiness and even without a roaring crowd behind them at Anfield I fancy an entertaining game with Jurgen Klopp’s men taking all three points.’

Elsewhere, Owen said Leicester would have ‘too much’ for Brighton at the King Power Stadium, backed Tottenham to come out on top in a ‘tight and cagey affair’ with West Ham and fancied Newcastle to get the better of Aston Villa.

Owen also predicted that Everton’s trip to Norwich would end in a 1-1, backed Wolves to win comfortably at home to Bournemouth and predicted a ‘low-scoring draw’ between Burnley and Watford.

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