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Chelsea need to keep pressure on Manchester duo.

Five talking points for the Premier League this weekend

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The Manchester and Merseyside derbies will hog the spotlight on Sunday, but there are plenty of other sub-plots to this weekend’s Premier League action.

No doubt about it, the biggest games do take place on the Sunday this weekend, but that shouldn't put football fans off from watching the games on the Saturday as well.

There is plenty going on, and as we enter the busy Christmas period, things start to get very exciting in the Premier League.

So, let's forget about Sunday's derbies, and let's focus on other possible talking points going into this weekend's action.

Press Association Sport have taken a look at five other talking points.

Tottenham Need Premier League Form

Tottenham made serene progress in the Champions League – taking four points from Real Madrid to top Group H – but to the detriment of their Premier League campaign.

Having put Europe to one side until February, Spurs need to set about trying to claw back some of the 18 points they trail leaders Manchester City by.

A home meeting with Stoke City should provide the perfect opportunity to get back on track domestically, but previous home draws against Burnley, Swansea, and West Brom suggest it might not be that simple.

The Joe Hart Conundrum

FBL-ENG-PR-WATFORD-WEST HAM

Joe Hart is seemingly still England’s first-choice goalkeeper, but should he be axed by David Moyes for West Ham’s home meeting with Chelsea, his World Cup ambitions may be in tatters.

The 30-year-old has been unconvincing since joining the Hammers, and Spanish 'keeper Adrian impressed while deputising for Hart against his parent club Manchester City.

Hart is already under pressure from Jordan Pickford and Jack Butland with the Three Lions, and if he cannot hold down a place for his club, then his spot in the national squad could even be in jeopardy.

Chelsea Need To Keep Winning

With Manchester’s top-two not in action until Sunday’s derby, Chelsea have the chance to exert some light pressure on the pace-setters.

Chelsea v Newcastle United - Premier League

The champions currently reside in third, three points behind United and 11 adrift of City, and head to London rivals West Ham for the lunchtime kick-off.

With the Hammers still finding their feet under new boss Moyes, Antonio Conte will fancy his chances of nicking three points from the London Stadium.

Eden Hazard’s electrifying form should be too much for a creaking West Ham defence, despite their encouraging display against City last weekend.

Dull Affair Expected Between Swansea and West Brom

Swansea have scored eight goals this season. Which is the same amount as Gabriel Jesus has hit for Manchester City.

Stoke City v Swansea City - Premier League

Meanwhile, West Brom have found the net 12 times, level with Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah. So a feast of goals is not expected when the sides meet at the Liberty Stadium.

Alan Pardew is looking for his first win as Baggies boss, and if he gets his way, the pressure on opposite number Paul Clement will be cranked up amid talk of dressing-room disharmony among the struggling Swans.

Crystal Palace Are Turning It Around

Roy Hodgson’s revival continues at pace, and Crystal Palace are now within touching distance of climbing out of the bottom three, which if they manage before Christmas, should be some achievement given their record-breaking poor start to the season.

West Bromwich Albion v Crystal Palace - Premier League

Next up for ex-England boss Hodgson is a first competitive meeting with a potential Three Lions manager of the future in Eddie Howe, whose Bournemouth side are by no means clear of trouble themselves.

A home win for the Eagles and they will be just two points behind their visitors.

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Topics:
West Ham United
Bournemouth
West Bromwich Albion
Premier League
Football
Tottenham Hotspur
Chelsea
Crystal Palace
Swansea City

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