Statistical preview to the Premier League: Manchester City vs Swansea; Everton vs West Ham; Arsenal vs Manchester United

WhoScored.com return to rattle off the stats of the top matches in the Premier League this weekend

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Manchester City vs Swansea

This is very much a match between two sides, and certainly managers, in contrasting mood given their recent results. Such have been the fortunes of the two sides, comparative to their pre-season expectations at least, that Swansea could draw level on points with their hosts on Saturday with a win. It's a long shot, admittedly, but their scalps include the likes of United and Arsenal already this season.

It's fair to say Garry Monk's opposite number this weekend is having a tougher time of things, despite Manuel Pellegrini's City side sitting 3 points and 2 places prettier than their visitors going into the game. After a run of 6 games has heralded just one win the Chilean is perhaps more under pressure at the club than he has ever been before and failure to win this home game ahead of a crucial clash with Bayern Munich in the Champions League could spell trouble for the City boss.



As far as recent meetings between the two are concerned, however, the home side have reason for optimism. They've won all three of their meetings with Swansea at the Etihad without conceding a single goal, the first of which was the Welsh outfit's first ever game in the Premier League. That match, ending somewhat flatteringly 4-0 to Manchester City, was also a Premier League debut for Sergio Aguero. The Argentine netted twice on the night and has scored 9 goals in his last 6 league appearances, while Monk's men are without a win on the road in 5 matches and must aim to keep out the top-flight's leading marksman to buck that trend.

Everton vs West Ham


Another meeting between teams whose early form has been somewhat unexpected; fourth placed West Ham travel to face an Everton side meandering in mid-table. Only the three sides above them have won more league matches than Sam Allardyce's men this season (5), while only five teams have secured fewer victories than the Toffees (3), whose most recent back-to-back draws have stunted what looked likely to be a resurgence from Roberto Martinez's men.
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Only Arsenal have averaged more possession than Everton this season (57.2%) but the Merseysiders have conceded too many chances, and indeed goals (18), when they don't have the ball. This perhaps could point to a lack of defensive discipline and organisation once the ball is turned over and that is certainly something that their visitors on Saturday will look to exploit. Many have praised West Ham for an apparent transition to free-flowing, attacking football but in truth they are just far more efficient than they were last time around.

The Hammers have averaged over 10% less possession than their hosts this weekend (47.1%) but have attempted more shots at goal (14.4 to 13.6 per game). Their combative midfield are now more proactive in possession, due in no small part to the arrival of Alex Song and form of Stewart Downing further upfield, and that could hurt Everton. With 4 sendings off in their last 5 meetings and only one of the last 8 separated by more than a single goal this should be a hard-fought and entertaining contest, with West Ham hoping to end a run of 12 league meetings without victory against the Toffees.

Theo-Walcott.jpg
Theo Walcott (left) is a doubt for Arsenal


Arsenal vs Manchester United

The biggest game of the weekend as we return from another international break, however, undoubtedly sees Arsenal play host to Manchester United in the late kick-off on Saturday. The two teams are separated by just one point in the table, though both are significantly lower down it than they would have hoped at this stage of the season. With just 4 wins apiece from their first 11 league fixtures the two have all but relinquished any feint title hopes already.

Nevertheless both teams have plenty to play for in terms of their European aspirations and Arsenal in particular will be desperate to end a run of 6 matches without a win against the Red Devils. If they want to put a halt to that winless streak the collective will have to improve having relied heavily on the exploits of Alexis Sanchez of late; the Chilean having had a hand in 7 of Arsenal's last 8 Premier League goals. Step forward Danny Welbeck, with a point to prove to a certain Mr Van Gaal.

The England man will want to exploit what has become somewhat of an injury crisis at the back for his former club, with David De Gea and Daley Blind the latest names to add to a concerning list of absentees for the away side. With United without a win on the road in the league all season, with only QPR and Burnley picking up fewer points on their travels (3), both managers are in desperate need of a result and goals are surely to be expected at the Emirates given the defensive frailties of the two sides.

All statistics courtesy of WhoScored.com, where you can find yet more stats, including live in-game data and unique player and team ratings.

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