Head2Head with Thabo Mamatshele

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For round 23 we challenge former Ledwaba Power Stars player, Thabo Mamatshele.

Thabo, like a few other unfortunate players, had his playing career rudely interrupted by a knee injury. Rather than retire to the couch and turn into a michelin man, Thabo looks after himself by cycling inhumane distances and in 2015 completed the ABSA Cape Epic. Respect!

Thabo is a family man and a Chelsea supporter so he will no doubt be feeling a little happier with the recent results versus the early season form. You can follow Thabo on twitter @thabomamatshele

Thabo: West Ham v Man. City 1-1

West Ham is on form with Payet & Valencia on great form. Man City are not good travellers this season. I wanted to go for a West Ham win but I think Man City will hold on to a draw. The long term injury to Kompany isn’t helping matters at City as Omtamedi and Mangala aren’t great leaders.

Marcel: West Ham 1 – 2 Man City

I think City have too much class to lose in London this weekend but I expect the Hammers to put up a decent fight and push City all the way. Winner in the last 10 minutes.

Dirk: West Ham 1 – 2 Man City

City will looking at avenge their lose at home to the Hammers earlier this season. Aguero is back and sharp so will be influential.

RESULT: West Ham 2 – 2 Man City

Thabo: Leicester City v Stoke City 2-1

Leicester will want to continue were they left off after an impressive away win in White Hart Lane. Vady and Marhez have been struggling but I see them coming back strongly in this game. I go for a Leicester straight win.

Marcel: Leicester City 2 – 1 Stoke

A high paced game, much like a fencing match is to be expected with both teams trying to soak up pressure and score on fast counter attacks. Home team shades it for me but anything could happen if Stoke bring their “A-game”.

Dirk: Leicester 1 – 1 Stoke

Two teams playing excellent football and maintaining high league table positions. See them cancelling each other out in what will be a fantastic game to watch!

RESULT: Leicester 3 – 0 Stoke

Thabo: Sunderland v Bournemouth 3-1

Dafoe has been scoring crucial goals and was impressive against Swansea. Sunderland are playing beautiful football at the moment and I don’t see Bournermouth giving them a challenge.

Marcel: Sunderland 1 – 2 Bournemouth

Last week we saw Sunderland win their second game in a row. Then normal service resumed and they were trounced by Spurs. I expect more heartache for them.

Dirk: Sunderland 1 – 0 Bournemouth

Sunderland have found some form somehow and this should be enough at home to edge out the Cherries.

RESULT: Sunderland 1 – 1 Bournemouth

Thabo: Man. United v Southampton 3-1

Although Man U has been playing ugly and boring football, I think with Rooney scoring goals lately, I see them winning this one. Ronald Koeman’s men have been struggling this year. They have only won 2 games on the road.

Marcel: Manchester United 3 – 0 Southampton

The battle of the Dutch coaches resumes. LVG must play Schneiderlin and forget about Fellaini. Southampton are slowly recovering from a dreadful run but it’s a home game at OT. Attack attack attack!

Dirk: Man United 1 – 1 Southampton

Both teams have had mixed form lately but got two very important wins over the weekend. Their strengths seem to cancel each other out. A draw all day.

RESULT: Manchester 0 – 1 Southampton

Thabo: Crystal Palace v Tottenham 1-2

Spurs are good travellers sometimes, although Palace have been playing well under Padew, I see Spurs surprising them at home.

Marcel: Crystal Palace 0 – 1 Spurs

There are a lot of London derbies in a season… Spurs to win. Palace have gone off the boil rapidly lately. Only one win in their last 6 games and haven’t scored in the last 5. It’s unlikely to change during this fixture.

Dirk : Palace 1 – 2 Spurs

Palace are struggling to score goals and Spurs have been, that’s basically the difference between these two sides right now.

RESULT: Crystal Palace 1 – 3 Tottenham

 

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Thabo: West Brom v Aston Villa 2-0

Villa are serious relegation candidates, TP is a very conservative coach, after holding Chelsea to a 2-2 draw, they should fancy their chances against struggling AV.

Marcel: West Brom 1 – 1 Villa

Terrible game to watch no doubt, so I won’t. I’m expecting Villa to try hard and still fail at the end. West Brom aren’t enjoying themselves at the moment either. They were thumped by Southampton on the last outing.

Dirk: West Brom 2 – 1 Villa

The fact that Villa are finding it so hard to sign players speaks volumes for where they find themselves. West Brom haven’t been at their best, but they don’t need to beat a dour Villa side.

RESULT: West Brom 0 – 0 Aston Villa

Thabo: Norwich v Liverpool 1-2

Liverpool can be good travellers sometimes, they showed it against Man City. Their 3-3 against Arsenal should be motivation going into this game.

Marcel: Norwich 0 – 1 Liverpool

I expect Liverpool to bounce back from the defeat at home to United. They played fairly well but couldn’t score, Norwich are not as good as Liverpool in any department and Klopp should collect points here.

Dirk: Norwich 1 – 2 Liverpool

Liverpool were unfortunate not to beat Man United last weekend, and they should take this momentum into this fixture. Norwich are looking a better side, but Liverpool should have too much for them.

RESULT: Norwich 4 – 5 Liverpool

Thabo: Watford v Newcastle 2-1

Watford are doing well this season with Ighalo scoring some crucial goals. Newcastle have been struggling this season. Losing Krul was a blow to them.

Marcel: Watford 0 – 2 Newcastle

The wheels are coming off at Watford just as Newcastle have found their legs and are scoring more freely. The 3-3 draw with United will give them the confidence to push for goals when the chips are down.

Dirk: Watford 1 – 1 Newcastle

Watford have dipped slightly and Newcastle have started picking up some much needed points. It could well go either way, but most likely it will be a hard fought draw for both sides.

RESULT: Watford 2 – 1 Newcastle

Thabo: Arsenal v Chelsea 1-1

This will be a dull draw, Huddick will park the bus with Mikel and Matic. As a Chelsea fan I am hoping for a shock victory, but we have been leaking soft goals.

Marcel: Arsenal 2 – 1 Chelsea

Another London derby. This time an important game for Arsenal. All the other contenders have beaten Chelsea at home so Arsenal need to bag all the points here. If they play their fast paced passing game they could very well win easily. I expect Wenger to play a tight first half and then release the faster wingers in the 2nd half.

Dirk: Arsenal 2 – 2 Chelsea

Chelsea performing decently under Guus and think Arsenal will struggle here, they have been picking up points but struggling to be decisive. Expect a high scoring draw

RESULT: Arsenal 0 – 1 Chelsea

Thabo: Everton v Swansea 2-0

Swansea are struggling, Lukaku is on form and scoring crucial goals. It will be nice to see Stephen Pienaar getting some game time. Easy win for Everton.

Marcel: Everton 3 – 1 Swansea

Too many draws could spoil this season for Everton. Too many draws in games they should win. One win in the last 9 matches, 6 draws! This is the match to change things, Swansea are struggling and ripe for the picking.

Dirk: Everton 2 – 0 Swansea

Swansea picked up an important win midweek but need reinforcements up front to test, can see this being a good solid win for a good Toffees side.

RESULT: Everton 1 – 2 Swansea

Don’t like what @DirkVale or @MarcelSigg say about your team? Challenge them on twitter or reply below.

Points: Thabo 6 / Marcel 4 / Dirk 2

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