Tag Archive | "Sunderland"

2012 Premier League Picks: Arsenal vs. Sunderland Match Preview 8/18/12

Arsenal vs. Sunderland Match Prediction: Black Cats To Steal Point At Emirates: The time is here for the 2012 English Premier League season, as the first match day of the season kicks off on Saturday afternoon with a great slate of fixtures. ESPN and ESPN3.com are going to start their broadcasts of the Premier League on TV this week with a great clash at the Emirates Stadium, as Arsenal dukes it out with Sunderland.

It could be a relatively frustrating season for both the Gunners and the Black Cats. Arsenal was able to finish third last year on the Premiership table, but it was nowhere near as good as the two teams from Manchester. With seemingly no hope of catching either Man U or Man City in the long run, Arsenal knows that it has to build towards another run at the Champions League in 2012. Sunderland knows that it doesn’t have all that much in the way of a future in European competition without a remarkable run, and for a team that has been mired in the middle of the table, that just isn’t likely to happen. This is a crucial match at the outset of the year for both teams, as it is one that Arsenal should be comfortably winning, while it is one that Sunderland would be thrilled to get a point out of to get its campaign off on the right foot.

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Arsenal vs. Sunderland Schedule and Match Information
Arsenal vs. Sunderland Match Date/Time: Saturday, August 18th, 10:00 a.m. (ET)
Arsenal vs. Sunderland Stadium: Emirates Stadium
Arsenal vs. Sunderland on TV: ESPN, ESPN3.com
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Arsenal vs. Sunderland Match Odds: Arsenal -1 (-145)
Arsenal vs. Sunderland Betting Line Total: 2.5 (Over -132)

Of course, all eyes are going to be up front for Arsenal, where fans of the Gunners are no longer going to be seeing the great Robin van Persie. Van Persie spent part of last season out injured, and during that time, he assessed that the club wasn’t going in a direction that he was all that proud of. Now, he’s with Arsenal’s rivals in Manchester United, and there is a massive hole to be filled as a result. Lukas Podolski is going to be the man that has to take the lead and become one of the team’s best strikers, but the question is still there as to whether or not this is going to be a team that has the ability to compete at the top of the Premier League table this year. Longtime Manager Arsene Wenger knows that he has talent, but a lot of that talent is raw, and he has done as much as admit that this is going to be a season about building towards the future of the soccer program in London. Laurent Koscielny and Alex Oxalde-Chamberlain are both out of the fold for the Gunners as well.

In spite of the fact that Sunderland only scored 19 goals for the whole season on the road, there is still some confidence that this could be another year of survival. The Black Cats might be on the path to relegation this year if they don’t get some great contributions from newcomer Louis Saha up front. Sunderland had plenty of scoring potential last season, but in the end, just 45 goals didn’t cut it, especially when compared to the 46 or the relegated Bolton Wanderers and the 38 of the relegated Blackburn Rovers. Phil Bardsley will miss his first of what could be a number of Premier League matches, but James McClean is going to be out there in hopes of getting a great second season in for the Black Cats.

Arsenal vs. Sunderland Match Preview & Analysis: We really don’t have a heck of a lot of confidence in Sunderland’s ability to compete in this match, but the problem that we have with the Gunners is that we don’t think all that much of them either. We’ll take the goal on our side for now and hope that somehow, the Black Cats can find the back of the net. If they do, they should be golden, as we don’t really know if Arsenal has the ability to get more than one in the back of the net against a team that allowed just a shade over a goal per game last season, especially with van Persie now donning Manchester United colors.

Arsenal vs. Sunderland Punting Tip: Sunderland +1 (+120) @ BetOnline Sportsbook

Arsenal vs. Sunderland Score Prediction: Arsenal 1 – Sunderland 1

Posted in English Premier League, Featured

Premier League News: Steve Bruce Sacked, Martin O’Neill In For Sunderland

There has been a lot of hype surrounding the status of Andre Villas-Boas with Chelsea FC over the course of the last few weeks, but contrary to popular belief, the Premier League news broke on Thursday that the first manager of the season, Sunderland’s Steve Bruce, has been sacked.

Bruce was with the Black Cats starting in 2009. He inherited a team that just barely survived the drop into Coca-Cola Championship the year before, and he turned it into a middle of the table team. The squad finished in 13th place in 2009-10, his first season on the job, and more importantly, avoiding relegation wasn’t even a concern late on in the season. The team nearly finished closer to the European competition zone than the relegation zone.

In 2010-11, things got even better, as the Black Cats finished with 47 points and ended up in the top half of the table in 10th position. Once again, there was a serious threat for awhile about this team being in European competition, and relegation wasn’t even in the thoughts of their supporters.

This year though, things haven’t gone so well for Sunderland. The team only has two triumphs to show for its work in 13 matches, and though it is level in goal differential for the year, the 11 points in 13 matches is only just barely good enough to stay above the relegation zone for the time being.

Losing out on Asamoah Gyan has proven to be a big problem for Sunderland this year, as he was the heart and soul of the team’s offense. That being said, there was a slew of money that was put into the team like Wes Brown, Craig Gardner, and perhaps the most important piece of the puzzle for a young team, veteran John O’Shea. However, things just never worked out for the new players, and Sunderland’s management had no choice but to make a change.

Martin O’Neill is schedule to take over at the Stadium of Light as soon as this weekend. O’Neill used to manage both Leicester City and Aston Villa in the EPL, and he is going to bring that experience to his hometown team. First up this weekend is a clash with Wolverhampton, a team which sits level with the Black Cats on the Premier League table in terms of points with 11. If there is a loser of this game, that team will be in a heck of a lot of trouble in the relegation zone, especially if Wigan continues its form and can get out of the bottom of the table.

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Posted in English Premier League, Featured

Sunderland vs. Chelsea Football Club: English Premier League Scores

Sunderland knows that it definitely has its work cut out for it as it tries to stay out of the relegation zone from the English Premier League table, as it takes on Chelsea at the Stadium of Light in a nationally televised game. American soccer fans can watch this English Premier League on TV at 10:00 AM ET on Saturday, September 10th on ESPN2.

The Black Cats only have two points to show for their first three fixtures this year in the EPL, and needless to say, they haven’t been all that thrilled about it. A draw at Liberty Stadium in the team’s last fixture really wasn’t good enough in what might amount to be a relegation battle. However, since that point, the team has locked up former Arsenal striker Nicklas Bendtner to try to help out the embattled Asamoah Gyan.

These two could make for a formidable duo to face Chelsea, a team which might have some problems protecting its own net if injured net minder Petr Cech doesn’t make it back in time for this one. The Blues have conceded two goals in three fixtures to start off the season, but the team does have five strikes of its own to offset that.

The Black Cats only have one goal, a strike from Sebastian Larsson to draw might Liverpool at Anfield to start off the campaign.

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It should be no surprise that the veteran, Frank Lampard has been the key for the Chelsea offense this year. He already has one of the team’s five goals and has a pair of assists as well in Premier League action, and he has been in fantastic form.

Chelsea got off to a rather slow start by drawing on the road at Stoke City to start off its season, but since that point, it took down West Bromwich Albion 2-1 and Norwich 3-1. Both fixtures were played at Stamford Bridge.

This is also expected to be the debut for Raul Meireles, who comes over from Liverpool as a late signing to bolster a midfield that is still awaiting the return of the injured Michael Essien. Manager Andre Villas-Boas used to manage Meireles at FC Porto before the Portuguese native made the switch to England to join rivals, Liverpool, but literally with hours to go before the transfer window closed, Meireles made the switch to join the Blues.

Last year, these two played two very, very different fixtures. Sunderland absolutely dominated the then defending champs 3-0 when playing at Stamford Bridge, but in the return fixture, the Blues found a way to net four in a 4-2 romp here at the Stadium of Light. You can bet that Chelsea still remembers the level of frustration that the Black Cats put upon it in its meeting last year at home, and that will probably be what the team needs to rely upon to make sure that it comes away with its third straight EPL victory on Saturday.

Chelsea is favored at -1 (+128) at Bet365 Sportsbook. The ‘total’ is set at 2.5, over +100.

Posted in English Premier League, Featured


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