On fire: Tottenham’s Gareth Bale is one of the hottest players in the league right now. *AFP photo
On fire: Tottenham’s Gareth Bale is one of the hottest players in the league right now. *AFP photo

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 30: This is the time of the year football widows dread — starting with tonight’s Liverpool-Newcastle match, there are games for the next six days.

The Boxing Day draw-fest left my predictions in tatters last week with just two correct out of 10. Having seven of the matches end in draws did nothing to help me.


Liverpool v Newcastle
Liverpool should have won on Boxing Day except for an epic performance by Blackburn’s backup goalkeeper who denied Andy Carroll in the last seconds of the match.
Carroll must have been wondering what he’s done to upset the football gods with just three goals in 19 appearances — that’s not much bang for the their 35 million pound investment. Maybe there should be a Commission of Inquiry on how that money was spent?
The soap opera that is Luis Suarez continued this week with him getting a one game ban (tonight’s match) for his inappropriate hand gesture at Fulham on December 5.
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew said his club would look to had strength to their backline in the January transfer window.
BDA Sun prediction: 1-0


Man Utd v Blackburn
Man United keeps clicking along and now find themselves tied atop the table with Man City, but behind by five on goal difference.
Defender Jonny Evans will be out for at least two weeks with a calf injury, which may actually be a blessing based on some of his blunders earlier this year.
No big worries though, United has posted four clean sheets in its last five matches conceding just one goal.
Blackburn boss Steve Kean was handed a lifeline by Liverpool and is now targeting four transfers in January to get the club off the bottom of the table.
BDA Sun prediction: 3-0

Arsenal v QPR
Yes, that is a Henry Thierry sighting at Emirates. He’s been training with the Arsenal as it’s the offseason for the New York Red Bulls and the MLS. He may be taken on a two-month loan while Arsenal is short of strikers due to the Africa Cup. QPR is also short in the striker department with both Shaun Wright Phillips and Joey Barton not contributing Boss Neil Warnock promises he’s going to get four new players in the transfer window to ensure QPR stays up.
BDA Sun prediction: 2-0

Bolton v Wolves
“Biggest match of the season” is how Own Coyle labels Bolton’s home match against Wolves. Bolton is second from the bottom while Wolves are just out of the relegation zone. It could have major implications on who gets relegated.
BDA Sun prediction: 1-0

Chelsea v Aston Villa
Is Chelsea out of the title race? Manager Andre Villas-Boas says it will be difficult chasing down to the two Manchester clubs. Difficult, yes. Impossible, no. City is targeting 90 points to win the league so Chelsea would need 56 from its final 60 to reach that number.
To be on that road they would need to beat Villa.
Villa has one goal in its last three matches and with injuries to Emile Heskey and Darren Bent, it will have to play stellar defence to even share the spoils.
BDA Sun prediction: 2-0

Norwich v Fulham
Norwich midfielder David Fox has called their home ground a “fortress” as the Canaries have garnered most of their points there.
Fulham is a funny team and you never know how their squad will play from week to week. They get hammered 5-0 by United at home but then draw with Chelsea on the road.
BDA Sun prediction: 2-1

Stoke v Wigan
Wigan looked terrible against United while Stoke’s match against Villa was a bore. Stoke should be able to take advantage and keep Wigan in relegation danger with a victory here.
BDA Sun prediction: 3-1

Swansea v Tottenham
Just how good is Tottenham’s Gareth Bales right now? So good that Swansea’s Kemy Augustien is begging not to play right back so he would have to try and defend him. The Dutch midfielder was an emergency substitution when Angel Rangel developed an ankle injury.
He said: “I was frustrated when the manager told me to play right-back because I have never played there before. I don’t like the position at all.”
With an attitude like that, Spurs fans will hope he does start there.
BDA Sun prediction: 1-2


West Brom v Everton
If you stayed up late the night before partying on New Year’s Eve, this mid-table clash probably isn’t worth dragging yourself out of bed for unless you are die-hard fans. West Brom fans have to be pleased in being the first team to keep a clean sheet against Man City, so they’ll get the nod here.
BDA Sun prediction: 1-0

Sunderland v Man City
Even though Sunderland are just four points from being in the bottom three, they are one of just eight clubs that don’t have a negative goal difference. That will change on Sunday when Man City will look to correct a no-goal performance versus West Brom.
BDA Sun prediction: 0-3