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Premier League predictions: Lawro v Will Kennard from Chase & Status

Burnley could move four points clear of third-bottom Everton if they win at Watford on Saturday, but is the Clarets’ away form cause for concern in their bid to avoid the drop?

“Burnley have clearly picked up under Michael Jackson, with seven points from three games since he took charge,” said BBC football expert and former Liverpool defender Mark Lawrenson.

“But both their wins in that run came at Turf Moor. I’m still not convinced by their away form – they have only won once on the road all season – or indeed that they are going to stay up.”

Lawro is making predictions for all 380 Premier League matches this season, against a variety of guests.

This week he takes on Will Kennard, one half of electronic duo Chase & Status, who is an Arsenal fan.

Chase and Status release their new album, What Came Before, in June. Their latest single, Mixed Emotions, is out now.

Chase & Status are Saul Milton (left), aka Chase) and Will Kennard (right, aka Status)
Chase & Status are Saul Milton (left, aka Chase) and Will Kennard (right, aka Status). They have had more than 1.4bn streams and sold 2.3m albums, and have collaborated with Dizzee Rascal, Kano, Snoop Dogg, Rihanna, Rita Ora, Major Lazer, Nile Rodgers and Slaves

Kennard, aka Status, grew up a Gunner and told BBC Sport: “I became an Arsenal fan because my best friend at school told me his dad played for them.

“It turned out he only played for the B team, but when you are eight years old and playing football in the park with an actual Arsenal player, that is still very impressive.

“He took us down to Highbury a fair bit when we were growing up and they have been my club ever since – through many highs and lows!

“When I was a kid, Ian Wright was just the absolute Don, but I loved Tony Adams as well because he epitomised that gritty English-style spirit that Arsene Wenger inherited from the great George Graham era when he took over.

“Towards the end under Wenger, when things went awry. It felt like that sort of toughness was one of the things we were lacking.

“Now, under Mikel Arteta, it feels like there is a bit of grit coming back to the team – more physicality, and a stronger mindset.

“We need it, because for too long it felt like we were a side that had some fancy footwork, but you could quite easily push us around.”

Chase & Status with MC Rage
Chase & Status, shown here playing the O2 Apollo Manchester with MC Rage, were the first UK electronic act to headline the O2 Arena and have headlined the Reading and Leeds Festivals. They headlined Glastonbury on the Other Stage in 2013 and return there, on Arcadia Stage, this year.

Arsenal are chasing a fourth-place finish and a return to the Champions League, in which they last played in 2016-17.

Even if they don’t make it, however, Will still feels they are heading in the right direction under Arteta.

“He’s got that passion we need,” he explained. “Towards the end, Wenger became this kind of ‘mythical genius’ figure, which worked for a while and really was great but then there was a spell where it all felt too passive.

“We just needed someone going absolutely bonkers to gear up the players and go with what the fans wanted to see, so it is nice to see Arteta’s passion, and I think it’s genuine.

“I like what he’s doing. It feels as if he thinks something very exciting could happen for him, and the club. Everyone is behind him.

“I’m actually feeling pretty good about our chances of finishing fourth, but there have been so many ups and downs that you can never get too confident.

“If you had asked me a couple of weeks ago when we had just lost three games in a row and Tottenham were flying again, then I was thinking that it was all over, and we were done.

“The way we have responded to that, by beating Chelsea and Manchester United, has been amazing. We’re in the mix again but you look at our remaining games, including Tottenham on 12 May, and you know it is going right down to the wire.

“Whatever happens next, though, it’s been a great season, considering the way we started it with three defeats. We could have had a big wobble from there but instead Arteta just built the confidence up.

“It would obviously make a big difference if we got into the Champions League in terms of attracting certain players but we had a really good transfer window without it last summer and the progress we’ve made on the pitch this season can only help that too.

“People can look at Arteta’s pedigree and see him putting together a proper squad with a proper culture. That will attract the right players because they will want to be a part of it.”

Premier League predictions – week 35
Result Lawro Will
Newcastle v Liverpool x-x 0-2 1-2
Aston Villa v Norwich x-x 2-0 1-0
Southampton v Crystal Palace x-x 2-1 0-0
Watford v Burnley x-x 2-1 0-1
Wolves v Brighton x-x 2-1 1-0
Leeds v Man City x-x 0-2 1-3
Everton v Chelsea x-x 1-1 2-1
Tottenham v Leicester x-x 2-0 2-0
West Ham v Arsenal x-x 1-2 0-1
Man Utd v Brentford x-x 2-0 2-1

A correct result (picking a win, draw or defeat) is worth 10 points. The exact score earns 40 points.


All games kick off at 15:00 BST unless otherwise stated.


Newcastle v Liverpool (12:30 BST)

Villarreal did not really pose Liverpool too many problems in their Champions League semi-final on Wednesday, but I’d expect Newcastle to be much more of a threat going forward.

They won’t be gung-ho or anything like that, but the way they have kicked on in the past few weeks means they go into this game without being under any pressure whatsoever.

Table showing the top of the Premier League: 1st Man City, 2nd Liverpool
City have led the Premier League for 144 out of 145 days since 4 December. Their remaining league games are against Leeds (a), Newcastle (h), Wolves (a), West Ham (a) and Aston Villa (h). Liverpool must play Newcastle (a), Tottenham (h), Aston Villa (a), Southampton (a) and Wolves (h)

All of the Magpies’ January signings have done well, especially Bruno Guimaraes, who looks the real deal, and they are getting results.

Eddie Howe made a few changes to freshen up his team for their win over Norwich last weekend, including playing Joelinton through the middle, and they all seemed to work.

After winning four games in a row, Newcastle will be full of confidence but, if that means they are even slightly more open than usual this weekend, that will suit Jurgen Klopp’s side.

I’m sure Howe’s plan will still be to make sure they are difficult to beat, but I don’t think the home fans will settle for seeing them put 11 men behind the ball for 90 minutes and just play for a point.

The problem there is that Liverpool are at a different level to any of the sides Newcastle have just beaten – the Canaries, Crystal Palace, Leicester and Wolves.

Also, the way the Reds are playing makes me think they will get the result they need, no matter who is in their team. They are just in that zone.

Lawro’s prediction: 0-2

Will’s prediction: Newcastle are in good form but Liverpool should still take this one. 1-2

Aston Villa v Norwich

Aston Villa got a point at Leicester last time out after four straight defeats but they really need a win and a good performance here after slipping down the table in recent weeks.

It’s important for Steven Gerrard that things don’t continue to drift until the end of the season after he made such a strong start as Villa boss, because how they finish the campaign will affect who he is able to attract to the club in the summer.

Norwich are even more desperate for points and could be relegated on Saturday if they lose and Burnley beat Watford.

Unfortunately for the Canaries it is just a question now of when they go down, not if.

They didn’t play too well against Newcastle last time out and it felt as if one or two of them had already accepted they would be falling through the trap door.

Lawro’s prediction: 2-0

Will’s prediction: Villa aren’t playing well but I think Norwich have gone now. 1-0

Southampton v Crystal Palace

Both these sides are in mid-table and on paper don’t have much to play for but it’s so tight in there they could finish anywhere between ninth and 15th, and a top-half finish is worth fighting for.

Wherever they end up, I’d argue Saints and Palace have both had good seasons because they have never looked remotely in danger of the drop, but that’s a bigger achievement for Palace.

They changed their manager and also the way they played last summer, and took a bit of a gamble on Patrick Vieira. It has definitely paid off.

This is actually really difficult to predict, because neither side is exactly flying form-wise – they’ve both managed one win, two draws and two defeats from their past five games – but I’m going with Southampton because they are at home.

Lawro’s prediction: 2-1

Will’s prediction: These two are pretty evenly-matched on the pitch and in the table. 0-0

Will on Palace boss Patrick Vieira: Arteta is doing a great job so we are very happy with him but Vieira is always going to be linked with a return to Arsenal as a manager.

I talked about Arteta’s passion and being an inspiring leader for young players at the club; well, Vieira is clearly the same at Palace. What a statesman he was as a player for us.

I think it is so important to have that connection, with a manager who immediately gets the culture of the city and the club and understands the mindset of the fans.

That doesn’t always happen even when you get a good manager, as I guess we found out with Unai Emery, or sometimes it takes a long time. One of the best things about Arteta is that he gets all of that, and did from the start. Vieira has done the same at Palace.

Watford v Burnley

Watford’s home form is obviously awful – they have lost 10 in a row at Vicarage Road – but they haven’t played badly in all of those games.

In their last home game, against Brentford, they only lost out in injury time and after coming close to nicking a late goal themselves.

You can probably see where I’m going here. I’m not being anti-Burnley either, I just feel Watford will win a game at some point and the best chance of that happening is going to be on Saturday, against the team one place above them.

Lawro’s prediction: 2-1

Will’s prediction: This could be massive for Burnley, and they are playing pretty well. 0-1

Wolves v Brighton

Neither of these sides usually have many goals in them but I’m hoping this might be bit more open than expected.

Wolves have gone off the boil of late, with three defeats in their past four games, but they have had runs like that before this season and they have never lasted too long.

Brighton have picked up more points away (25) than at home (16) this season, including those impressive wins at Arsenal and Tottenham at the start of the month, but I am going with Wolves to edge this one.

Lawro’s prediction: 2-1

Will’s prediction: I am going with home advantage here. 1-0

Leeds v Man City (17:30)

Some people are looking at this as a banana skin for the leaders, but I don’t see it that way.

Leeds still only play one way. I know Jesse Marsch has changed it a little bit since replacing Marcelo Bielsa as manager in February but they are still hyper-intensive, and still work really hard.

I think City are too good for that to work against them, and it doesn’t help that Leeds really lack a striker while Patrick Bamford is out. I can see Pep Guardiola’s side keeping them at arm’s length, and just picking them off.

City’s biggest win of the season so far came when they beat Leeds 7-0 at Etihad Stadium in December. We won’t see the same scoreline on Saturday, but they should still control the game and win comfortably.

Lawro’s prediction: 0-2

Will’s prediction: City’s 4-3 win over Real Madrid was absolutely bonkers, and that last Real goal was a bit disappointing for them after how well they had played. The second leg on Wednesday is going to be one heck of a game, but before then I think they will have too much for Leeds – although they won’t have it all their own way at Elland Road either. 1-3


Everton v Chelsea (14:00 BST)

Everton were much improved against Liverpool last weekend, and did really well for the first 60 minutes or so.

Yes, they were doing whatever they could to slow the game down and frustrate the Reds, but it was working and they carried a bit of a threat too.

In the end, they just couldn’t last out but there was nothing wrong with their spirit and it was still really encouraging, especially going into this game, where they will need to work just as hard to get anything out of Chelsea.

This is the first time Everton boss Frank Lampard has come up against Chelsea since losing his job at Stamford Bridge last year, and I don’t think it’s a bad time to play them.

Chelsea might make some changes after playing Manchester United on Thursday but they are pretty much sure of a top-four finish and Thomas Tuchel might just be looking now to work out his FA Cup final team.

Lawro’s prediction: 1-1

Will’s prediction: Everton’s situation is pretty desperate but for that reason I think we might see a shock here. It might be scrappy, but if they find a way of beating Chelsea, then they won’t care how they do it. 2-1

Tottenham v Leicester (14:00 BST)

Tottenham have dropped points in some unexpected places in the past couple of weeks, losing at home to Brighton and then being held by Brentford.

I think this is a good game for them to get their top-four bid back on track, though.

Leicester played Roma in the Europa Conference League semi-final on Thursday, with the second leg next week, and that competition is their priority now because winning it is the only way they are getting back in Europe next season.

Lawro’s prediction: 2-0

Will’s prediction: I know what I want to happen here, but I don’t think it will! Tottenham know fourth place is at stake and Leicester do not have much to play for in the league any more. 2-0

West Ham v Arsenal (16:30 BST)

Like Leicester, West Ham are fully focused on Europe at the moment – this follows the first leg of their Europa League semi-final with Eintracht Frankfurt, which is absolutely massive for them.

As I’ve been saying all season, West Ham don’t have the biggest squad and they will almost certainly make some changes here.

That should help Arsenal, although the Hammers will still be difficult to beat.

The Gunners have benefited all season from not being in European competition – most of their midweeks have been free – but being fresher is particularly handy at this stage of the campaign.

Lawro’s prediction: 1-2

Will’s prediction: I’m a bit worried this might be like a wet-lettuce draw – we always go on a good little run and then stop playing – but I’ve got to go with us to win. We are not scoring many at the moment, but one goal would be enough for me. 0-1

Will’s favourite Arsenal player: It’s probably Bukayo Saka, for his attitude and everything he brings, although Martin Odegaard is just so sick at the moment and I love the kind of classy footballer he is – he is special to watch. There are a few to choose from, though. Emile Smith Rowe is doing amazing stuff too, and I love the drive that Kieran Tierney gives the team.


Man Utd v Brentford (20:00 BST)

Manchester United are so passive at the moment that it’s hard to see them beating anyone, but maybe the Old Trafford crowd will galvanise them this time. Something has to.

Brentford have been on an amazing run and they will pose a threat if they can get Christian Eriksen on the ball, but I’m still going for a United win even though I have been wrong before when I’ve forecast an improved performance from them.

Lawro’s prediction: 2-0

Will’s prediction: Going from recent results for both clubs, this is a Brentford win but I have chickened out of predicting that. It wouldn’t surprise me if that happened, but United will probably pull something out of the bag even if they don’t play well. 2-1

Lawro and Will were speaking to BBC Sport’s Chris Bevan.

How did Lawro do last time?

Last weekend, Lawro drew with Austin Brown from rock band Parquet Courts. They both got four correct results from 10 Premier League matches, including one exact scores, for a total of 70 points.

There was also one Premier League game played in midweek, Manchester United versus Chelsea, which was brought forward from 14 May because Chelsea are in the FA Cup final.

There is no guest for that set of games yet, but this week’s guest, Will, gave his score. It would have been added to the guest total, not his personal tally, but he and Lawro both went for a Chelsea win so did not pick up any extra points.

From week 37 Result Lawro Will
Man Utd v Chelsea 1-1 0-2 0-1
1 Man City 33 29 4 0 91 0
2 Liverpool 33 25 8 0 83 0
3 Chelsea 33 25 7 1 82 0
4 Man Utd 35 24 4 7 76 +2
5 Tottenham 33 22 7 4 73 0
6 Arsenal 33 15 8 10 53 -2
7 Leeds 33 16 4 13 52 +9
8 Aston Villa 32 14 9 9 51 +7
9 Leicester 32 13 9 10 48 +1
10 West Ham 34 12 10 12 46 -3
11 Wolves 33 11 6 16 39 -3
12 Brighton 34 10 7 17 37 -1
13 Southampton 34 9 7 18 34 0
14 Newcastle 34 9 6 19 33 -5
15 Brentford 34 10 2 22 32 -3
16 Everton 32 8 7 17 31 +2
17 Crystal Palace 33 5 9 19 24 -3
18 Burnley 33 5 8 20 23 -1
19 Watford 33 2 6 25 12 0
20 Norwich 33 2 5 26 11 0


Score Guest
190 TJ from Ezra Collective
130 Jamie Webster
120 Jeremy Piven
110 Jelani Blackman, Friction, Reuben James, She Drew The Gun, S-X
100 ArrDee, Dev from Idles, Johnny Marr
80 Lawro (average after 34 weeks), Call Me Loop, Tom McFarland
70 Austin Brown, Ben Cajee, Elena Cole, Tom from Blossoms
60 Femi from Ezra Collective, Haydn Craven, James Spence of Rolo Tomassi
50 Aqib Khan, Jim Piddock, Joe from Blossoms, Shaun Thomas
40 James Arthur, Dan Haggis of The Wombats, Murray & Tav from FUR, Martin Noble, Curt Smith, Taka from Feeder, Justin Young
30 Dan McCarthy from KAWALA, Mez, Roland Orzabal, Michael ‘Venom’ Page, Roger Taylor, Zuzu
20 Joe Elliott
10 Tom Hughes
Total scores after week 34
Lawro 2,720
Guests 2,300
Lawro v Guests
P34 W20 D5 L9
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