5 Things To Watch For Week 12 Of The English Premier League
At long last, the Premier League.
After a two-week international break that seemed to last forever (marred by the tragic events at the Stade de France and a security scare in Germany), English football is back in action.
This weekend offers a marquee matchup that seems to always live up to its billing, a fixture that has upset potential written all over it and the possibility of history being made.
Here are five things to watch this weekend in the English Premier League.
It's the biggest game of the weekend.
Manchester City sits atop the Premier league but entered the international break off the back of a disappointing 0-0 draw with Aston Villa.
They want to stay top and keep the red half of Manchester underneath them.
Liverpool fans were buzzing after a super 3-1 win against Chelsea away.
Then came the buzzkill of defeat at home to Crystal Palace which made manager Jürgen Klopp feel "lonely," as he watched the home fans leave early.
There is lots motivation for both sides in a game that, over the last few seasons, has rarely disappointed in excitement.
Injury prone stars
This weekend's game could see the return of two Premier League goal machines that struggle to stay fit.
Will Sergio Aguero and Daniel Sturridge feature this weekend? It looks like we will see the Argentinian feature at some point with Manuel Pellegrini saying he is ready to go.
Sturridge's availability is less certain.
It's been a long time since we've seen Sturridge in full fitness for Liverpool, and there is little doubt that there is growing concern that we will never see the Sturridge of 2013-14 again.
A tantalizing tease of that vintage Sturridge form was evident in his two-goal haul against Aston Villa earlier in the season, before a grimly predictable injury happened again.
After a limp home defeat to Crystal Palace prior to the international break, Jürgen Klopp could really do with a fit and healthy Sturridge to call on versus City this weekend.
Upset in the making?
Manchester United have not won many admirers for their style of play so far this season, yet if they beat Watford at Vicarage Road in the early game on Saturday morning, they will go top of the Premier League for a few hours.
Newly promoted Watford has flown somewhat under the radar, but they are in 11th place with Quique Sánchez Flores' team believing that survival is possible for the hornets.
Could Watford put a dent in United's title challenge this weekend? This game has the makings of an upset.
If you don't like United, this could be your "hate-watching" pick of the weekend.
Going for history
I want Jamie Vardy to equal Ruud van Nistelrooy's record of scoring in 10 consecutive games in the Premier League so I can stop talking about it.
Sure, it will be cool to have a random name like Vardy's alongside one of the great goal scorers of the Premier League era in the history books forever.
But coverage of these stories is so intense in the Premier League that even something quite special like this soon becomes tired and boring.
Let's hope Vardy gets it done against Newcastle, because the real story is that right now, Leicester City is in third place.
The kid is real
The Dele Alli hype-machine was already gathering pace after some impressive early season performances for Spurs.
After a stunning goal on Tuesday night for England against France at Wembley, the media hype-machine is in overdrive.
One paper speculated on Wednesday morning as to which team between Chelsea, Manchester United or Real Madrid would be first to make a bid for the 19-year-old.
Whoa, steady on chaps.
Can you imagine the media reaction if he scores in the derby v. West Ham on Sunday? Brace yourselves!