Lawro’s predictions v The Sherlocks drummer Brandon Crook

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May 8, 2021
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    Lawro's predictions

    Manchester City will secure their third Premier League title in four seasons if they beat Chelsea on Saturday, in a dress rehearsal for the Champions League final at the end of this month.

    "Usually I'd be thinking City will want to wrap the title up, but their manager Pep Guardiola might decide he wants to revamp his team," BBC Sport expert Mark Lawrenson said.

    "I don't think Guardiola should rest people on a day where they can win the league, but, also, that runs the risk of Chelsea beating them for a second time in the space of a few weeks – after they knocked them out of the FA Cup."

    Snapshot showing the top of the Premier League: 1st Man City, 2nd Man Utd, 3rd Leicester, 4th Chelsea, 5th West Ham & 6th TottenhamCity need three points from their final four games to secure the title

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

    This week's guest is Brandon Crook, drummer with Yorkshire indie band The Sherlocks – whose new single End of the Earth was released in April.

    The SherlocksThe Sherlocks' first album Live For The Moment reached number six in 2017 and they followed that with Under Your Sky which made number 20 in 2019

    Brandon is a Sheffield Wednesday fan who is hoping the Owls can pull off an amazing last-day escape from relegation on Saturday.

    The Owls are second-bottom of the Championship but will survive if they win at Derby and Rotherham fail to beat Cardiff, a scenario that would keep Wednesday up and relegate the Rams and the Millers instead.

    "It's going to be a horrible day," said Crook. "It's a massive game for us and Derby, but you have to throw Rotherham in there because, if they get a result, we could win and still go down.

    "That's how tight it is. It seems very unlikely that we can do it, but I'm trying not to think about it like that. We've just got to look after our end of things, and hope everything else goes our way."

    The Sherlocks drummer Brandon Crook"It feels like most teams can fly up the Championship table or drop like a stone depending in the space of a few weeks," says Crook. "It is a crazy division, I just hope we're still in it next season."

    It is 21 years since Wednesday were last in the Premier League but they came close to returning twice, in 2016 and 2017 when they lost in the Championship play-offs.

    "We were on tour for the 2016 play-off final, so I couldn't go to Wembley," Crook explained. "Instead I watched the game on a little flip-down screen in the back of a van on our way to a gig in Bristol.

    "I was properly deflated when we lost to Hull, because we'd had such had a good season and done so much good work.

    "It's a bit like how this season will come down to one game on the final day, but you are in that situation – good or bad – because of how you've done over the whole campaign.

    "We are too big a club to be going down to League One again, but we have had plenty of opportunities to get out of trouble, and we haven't taken them. If we go down, we will deserve it.

    "Getting six points deducted was obviously a big blow and I've lost count how many managers we've had this season, so there is no stability there.

    "But I think the biggest problem with Wednesday is that we just don't score enough goals – once we go behind we never seem to be able to come back and win a game, ever.

    "We can't hold on to a lead either, so you can sort of see why we are where we are in the table – we've got it bad all the way around.

    Snapshot showing the bottom of the Championship: 19th Bristol City, 20th Huddersfield, 21st Derby, 22nd Rotherham, 23rd Sheff Wed & 24th WycombeWith one game to play, Wycombe's inferior goal difference means they are all but down already. Two teams from Wednesday, Rotherham and Derby will join them in League One next season

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    Premier League predictions – week 35
    Result Lawro Brandon
    FRIDAY
    Leicester v Newcastle 2-4 3-0 2-1
    SATURDAY
    Leeds v Tottenham x-x 0-2 2-1
    Sheff Utd v Crystal Palace x-x 0-1 0-2
    Man City v Chelsea x-x 2-0 1-0
    Liverpool v Southampton x-x 2-0 3-0
    SUNDAY
    Wolves v Brighton x-x 0-2 1-1
    Aston Villa v Man Utd x-x 0-2 1-3
    West Ham v Everton x-x 2-0 2-1
    Arsenal v West Brom x-x 2-0 2-0
    MONDAY
    Fulham v Burnley x-x 0-2 1-1

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

    LAWRO'S PREDICTIONS

    FRIDAY

    Leicester v Newcastle

    Leicester 2-4 Newcastle

    Lawro's prediction: 3-0

    Brandon's prediction: 2-1

    Match report

    SATURDAY

    Leeds v Tottenham

    Leeds v Tottenham (12:30 BST)

    Leeds were pretty poor in their defeat at Brighton last week when they missed injured duo Kalvin Phillips and Raphinha.

    Both of them are doubts for this game and it would definitely mean advantage to Tottenham if they miss out again.

    I fancy Harry Kane and Son Heung-min to cause Leeds plenty of problems, and Spurs to leave with the points.

    Lawro's prediction: 0-2

    Brandon's prediction: Leeds are flying at the moment while Tottenham seem to have taken a bit of a step back. 2-1.

    Sheff Utd v Crystal Palace

    Sheff Utd v Crystal Palace (15:00 BST)

    Crystal Palace got taken apart by Manchester City in the second half last weekend, and the Eagles have now lost their past three games.

    I think that losing run ends at Bramall Lane, although I am not expecting a classic.

    Lawro's prediction: 0-1

    Brandon's prediction: Sheffield United have been awful all season, I think the other managers figured them out this time. There was no chance I was ever going to be a Blade – it was always Wednesday for me. I started off going to Hillsborough with my uncle when I was a kid and I buzzed off it. I've always loved going to watch us no matter how the team is doing – it's class, isn't it, with everyone singing tunes and getting your chips and curry before the match. It's what football is about. 0-2.

    Man City v Chelsea

    Man City v Chelsea (17:30 BST)

    It's difficult to second-guess Guardiola's team selection but I'd expect Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel to pick a strong side.

    Chelsea are still fighting for fourth place – to make sure they are in the Champions League next year, as well as trying to win it this season.

    Tuchel's side fully deserved their win over City at Wembley in the FA Cup semi-final last month but a stronger City line-up should come out on top at Etihad Stadium.

    Lawro's prediction: 2-0

    Brandon's prediction: I reckon this will be a cagey game and we know how strong Chelsea are at the back, but I am going with City to nick it. 1-0.

    Liverpool v Southampton

    Liverpool v Southampton (20:15 BST)

    I'm backing Liverpool to beat a Southampton team that is missing striker Danny Ings and does not have much to play for.

    But, even if they do take the three points on Saturday, it is going to be real struggle for Jurgen Klopp's side to finish fourth now.

    Firstly, Liverpool are relying on the teams above them to slip up, which I can't really see happening, but more importantly they are not playing well enough to go on the kind of run they need to make up ground.

    Lawro's prediction: 2-0

    Brandon's prediction: Liverpool to get back winning ways. 3-0.

    SUNDAY

    Wolves v Brighton

    Wolves v Brighton (12:00 BST)

    It is usually Brighton who struggle to score a second goal to finish games off, but they did that in impressive style to beat Leeds last week.

    Instead, it is Wolves who are finding goals hard to come by – they have managed two in the same game only once in their past 10 matches.

    Nuno Espirito Santo's side are basically waiting for the season to end, and it has been a disappointing one for them.

    I am going with Brighton to win here. They are basically safe now and, because of that, they might play with a bit of freedom.

    Lawro's prediction: 0-2

    Brandon's prediction: Not a lot of goals in this one. 1-1.

    Aston Villa v Man Utd

    Aston Villa v Man Utd (14:05 BST)

    Following the second leg of their Europa League semi-final with Roma on Thursday, this is the second of four games in eight days for Manchester United.

    But their squad is big enough to deal with that schedule and, other than their top two or three players – like Bruno Fernandes for example – the difference between their first and second choices in each position is not very big.

    Aston Villa are no pushovers, as they showed with their win at Everton last time out, but United should deliver, whatever team they put out.

    Lawro's prediction: 0-2

    Brandon's prediction: We might get some goals here. 1-3.

    West Ham v Everton

    West Ham v Everton (16:30 BST)

    West Ham were very impressive when they beat Burnley last weekend. I thought they were tailing off a bit after losing their previous two games, but they looked really strong at Turf Moor.

    Everton are much better on the road than they are at home but I think they are in for a difficult day in east London.

    The Hammers beat them at Goodison Park in January and I am expecting them to do the same at London Stadium on Sunday.

    Lawro's prediction: 2-0

    Brandon's prediction: Everton have dropped off it, while David Moyes has turned West Ham into something else. 2-1.

    Arsenal v West Brom

    Arsenal v West Brom (19:00 BST)

    Arsenal have already got Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang back and firing after his illness and having Alexandre Lacazette fit too really increases their goal threat.

    Defeat here would send West Brom down, but it is just a matter of time until that happens anyway.

    Lawro's prediction: 2-0

    Brandon's prediction: Arsenal are such a funny team – you never know what you are going to get from them. 2-0.

    MONDAY

    Fulham v Burnley

    Fulham v Burnley (20:00 BST)

    Fulham are another side whose time in the top flight is running out. Even a win here will only delay the inevitable.

    Snapshot showing the bottom of the Premier League: 15th Southampton, 16th Burnley, 17th Newcastle, 18th Fulham, 19th West Brom & 20th Sheff Utd

    Burnley know a point will make absolutely sure they are safe, but I am expecting them to get all three.

    Lawro's prediction: 0-2

    Brandon's prediction: This is a tough one to predict but I don't think Fulham will get the win they need. 1-1.

    Lawro and Brandon were speaking to BBC Sport's Chris Bevan.

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    How did Lawro do last time?

    From the last round of Premier League fixtures, Lawro got four correct results from the nine matches that were played, including three exact scores, for a total of 130 points.

    He beat Royal Blood drummer Ben Thatcher, who also got four correct results, but with one exact score, giving him a total of 70 points.

    Any points Lawro and Ben earn from the postponed game between Manchester United and Liverpool will be added when that match is played on 13 May. Lawro went for a 1-1 draw, while Ben predicted a 2-1 United win.

    Lawro's League Table graphic

    +/- DENOTE POSITION DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LAWRO'S TABLE AND ACTUAL POSITION
    TEAM P W D L PTS +/-
    1 Man City 34 30 4 94
    2 Chelsea 34 25 6 3 81 +2
    3 Man Utd 33 25 4 4 79 -1
    4 Tottenham 34 24 5 5 77 +2
    5 Liverpool 33 21 11 1 74 +2
    6 Leeds 34 22 1 11 67 +5
    7 Leicester 34 18 5 11 59 -4
    =8 Arsenal 34 16 5 13 53 +1
    =8 Wolves 34 14 11 9 53 +4
    10 Everton 33 11 10 12 43 -2
    =11 Brighton 34 11 7 16 40 +3
    =11 Burnley 34 10 10 14 40 +5
    13 West Ham 34 10 6 18 36 -8
    =14 Aston Villa 33 8 8 17 32 -4
    =14 Southampton 33 9 5 19 32 +1
    15 Newcastle 34 9 4 21 31 +2
    16 Crystal Palace 33 6 7 20 25 -3
    18 Sheff Utd 33 5 6 22 21 +2
    19 Fulham 34 3 31 9 -1
    20 West Brom 33 5 28 5 -1

    GUEST LEADERBOARD 2020-21

    Score Guest
    110 Sister Bliss, Amy Macdonald, Dot Major, Steve White
    100 Tubes
    90 Adam Devonshire, Becky Hill, Passenger, Chris Shiflett
    81 Lawro (average after 34 weeks)
    80 Celeste, Dan Flint, Frank Harper, Peter Hooton, Raye
    70 Sam Carter, Lou Cotterill, Ben Thatcher
    60 Majestic, Caroline Weir
    50 David Gray, Declan McKenna, Billy Monger, Paul Smith, Alex Sprogis, DJ Target
    40 Gavin 'Mo' Edgeley, Ben Howard
    30 Rick Astley, Lewis Evans, Steve Guttenberg, Gethin Jones, Fraser T. Smith
    20 Charlie Forbes, Dougie Payne
    10 Theo Ellis
    Rema
    Total scores after week 34
    Lawro 2,740
    Guests 2,210
    Lawro v Guests
    P34 W19 D1 L14

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