Local Issues - Getting Set For Premier League Derby Day
CHELSEA v FULHAM
Sky Sports Main Event @ 11am, Virgin TV 401
The day kicks off in earnest as Maurizio Sarri’s high-flying Blues welcome their West London compatriots. Recent years, of course, have seen the two sides plying their trades in different divisions – and, if we’re honest, at different levels – but it’s a relationship that’s been pretty spiky throughout history. There’s been some thoroughly modern intrigue added to this fixture though, with the appointment of Claudio Ranieri as manager at Craven Cottage meaning his second assignment as Fulham chief will be to plot the downfall of his former charges. Stamford Bridge will expect, but just imagine if the Tinkerman has the last laugh!
ARSENAL v TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR
Sky Sports Premier League @ 2pm, Virgin TV 405
The action reaches the north of the capital for one of the most fabled rivalries in English football. Spurs might have finished above the Gunners for the past two seasons, but that followed more than two decades of unbroken dominance for their nearest foes. This season, the two sides are right alongside one another in the table, and it might well be that the final Champions League qualification spot will be the reward for the winner – as if the stakes weren’t high enough! Add in the fact that both will be tangling in Carabao Cup action less than three weeks later, and this one has all the ingredients for a real showstopper!
LIVERPOOL v EVERTON
Sky Sports Premier League @ 4pm, Virgin TV 405
The Merseyside derby rounds things out – and for traditionalists, it might just be a case of saving the best for last! From Steven Gerrard’s hat-trick and Luis Suarez’s provocative celebration to Phil Jagielka’s rocket and Pepe Reina’s disaster, the fixture has thrown up a host of memorable moments over the years, and the fierce animosity between the fans makes this clash of red and blue one of the most renowned in world football. Jurgen Klopp’s men, of course, have the momentum ahead of this renewal, but these are the days where the form book tends to go out the window; Ireland captain Seamus Coleman and his Goodison Park colleagues will fancy their chances of heading back across Stanley Park with three points in tow…
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