Rowan’s Premier League Predictions 2019/20: February 1st-2nd

The title race may well be over now if it wasn’t already. Liverpool are now 19 points clear the point after beating Wolves and West Ham in the last two weeks. There was a big win for Leicester over West Ham but also big wins for teams around the bottom. Burnley stunned Manchester United, Aston Villa secured a late win over Watford in a big game at the bottom [pictured above, image from 90Min] while Bournemouth beat Brighton with some heroic saves from Pepe Reina and Aron Ramsdale in those games respectively. Chelsea played out a very entertaining draw with Arsenal although they should have won and there was also saw a great late comeback from Newcastle United as they scored twice deep into injury time as they salvaged an unlikely 2-2 draw with Everton.

A Jason Cummings brace stunned Liverpool as Shrewsbury came from 2 down to take them to a replay in the FA Cup. [Image from The Evening Standard].

Since the last Premier League action, 13 sides were involved in the FA Cup Fourth Round with seven progressing, four requiring replays including Liverpool and two eliminated including West Ham who lost at home to high flying Championship side West Brom. Midweek also saw the second leg of the Carabao Cup semi-finals with Aston Villa getting a late winner against Leicester City to set up a final with Manchester City who had done enough in the first leg to negate losing the second 1-0. read more

Rowan’s Premier League Predictions 2019/20 Midweek Special: January 21st-23rd

The weekend Premier League action was certainly entertaining. Liverpool broke more records as they beat Man United 2-0 to have the best ever record after 22 Premier League games. Their 64 points is more than any of the great sides; the Man United treble team, Arsenal’s invincibles and Man City’s centurion side. It is now only a matter of time they win the title after Manchester City slipped up again and Leicester lost at Burnley [pictured above; image from Sporting Life], VAR took some of the headlines rightfully chalking off two goals in the Liverpool-Man United game but for the use of the pitchside monitor in a Premier League game as Godfrey was sent off for Norwich.

It is the FA Cup Fouth Round this weekend meaning there are no premier league games. What that does mean though is that there are a set of midweek fixtures for me to make my predictions on and compare them as I do with Mark Lawrenson, Charlie Nicholas and the infamous BT Script. read more

The Late F1 2019 Season Review

With 2019 behind us, so too has another season of Formula One and I have eventually got round to doing a review of the 2019 season in which Lewis Hamilton stormed to his 6th World Championship; stretching closer to Michael Schumacher’s all-time win (91) and Championship records (7) as Mercedes made history in becoming the first team to win both the Drivers and Constructors Championship 6 times consecutively. That would suggest F1 in 2019 was boring as Mercedes and Hamilton had it all their own way but apart from the earlier rounds of the campaign, there was action up and down the field was thrilling and action-packed. 2019 was also notable for me attending my first ever Grand Prix which was an unbelievable experience.

Lewis Hamilton won F1’s 1,000th Grand Prix. [Image from formula1.com].

For the 22nd time since 1995, the F1 season started in Australia where Valtteri Bottas returned with a thumping victory over Hamilton =with a message to whom it concerns. Charles Leclerc, in only his second race at Ferrari, took pole in Bahrain and looked all set for a sensational maiden win but for an engine issue saw him lose the lead to Hamilton who chalked up his first win of 2019. Leclerc did get his first podium though; he finished 3rd. China saw F1 mark its landmark 1,000th Grand Prix and saw a dominant Hamilton leapfrog Bottas at turn 1 for his second successive victory. Baky saw the tables turned as Bottas took the turn 1 initiative before dominating proceedings. read more

Rowan’s Premier League Predictions 2019/20: January 18th-19th

Rowan’s Premier League predictions returned after a Christmas and new year break last weekend. It was a good weekend to come back. Liverpool beat Spurs to ensure they went 38 games unbeaten in the league, there was a controversial VAR handball to disallow a goal for West Ham at Sheffield United, Southampton stunned Leicester while Sergio Aguero made history becoming the highest-scoring foreign player in Premier League history as well as breaking Alan Shearer’s record for most hat-tricks in Man City’s 6-1 demolition of Aston Villa [pictured above, image from Sky Sports].

We are now onto another week of action and as usual, I am setting myself up for a fall by making predictions on each of the games and comparing them with the predictions made by Mark Lawrenson (Lawro), Charlie Nicholas and the infamous BT Script scoring five points for a correct score and two for the correct result. There have been a few FA Cup replays during the week so how will that impact on the action this weekend? read more

Rowan’s Premier League Predictions 2019/20: January 10th-12th

Welcome back to Rowan’s Predictions; I know I’d didn’t keep up with it during the Christmas Period and for those who were eagerly awaiting these posts, I can only apologise. A lot has happened since I last did a predictions post.

David Moyes is back at West Ham. [Image from WHFC]

Another manager received his P45. It was Manuel Pellegrini after West Ham’s defeat to Leicester saw the East London club lose 9 in 12. It wasn’t good enough and I feel sorry for Pellegrini as he’s a good coach. the Hammers performer an extraordinary u-turn by bringing in the man Pellegrini replaced in 2018; David Moyes! It had an impact with West Ham thumping Bournemouth 4-0 in his first game back. read more

The Mind of Rowan: Refections on 2019 and the 2010s; look ahead to 2020 and beyond

That is a wrap for 2019 and the 2010s as a decade. It is now 2020 and another decade to come. At this time of year on this blog, I like to reflect on the year before looking at what happened in Football, F1 and you know what, do I really care about politics now? Anyway, with it being the end of the decade as well I thought I would review some of the highlights as well…

Football
South Africa hosted the 2010 World Cup. [Image from FIFA].

2010 It’s time for Africa: That was the Shakira lyric as we all fell in love with South Africa as they became the first African country to host the FIFA World Cup and the hosts got us in the spirit with Tshabalala scoring in their opening game and showing us that celebration. There was the vuvuzela’s it was a unique atmosphere and after a heated to say the least final with one of the worst tackles i’ve ever seen from Nigel De Jong, Spain emerged victoriously. read more