Lawro’s Premier League predictions v Duran Duran drummer & Aston Villa fan Roger Taylor

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October 30, 2021
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    Lawro's predictions

    Manchester United have hogged the headlines since their humiliating home defeat at the hands of Liverpool last weekend, but will it be a different story for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side when they travel to Tottenham on Saturday?

    "Everyone is going to look at United after that 5-0 defeat and ask have they changed the way they play?," said BBC football expert Mark Lawrenson.

    "The balance of their team is wrong at the moment, that's the first thing. And they are conceding too many goals, so the priority against Spurs has to be to stop doing that."

    Snapshot of 4th to 9th in the Premier League: 4th West Ham, 5th Brighton, 6th Tottenham, 7th Man Utd, 8th Everton & 9th LeicesterManchester United have dropped to seventh place after taking one point from their past four league games. They could fall to 10th by the time they kick off against Tottenham, depending on results earlier on Saturday

    Lawro is making predictions for all 380 top-flight matches this season, against a variety of guests.

    This week's guest is Duran Duran drummer and Aston Villa fan Roger Taylor.

    Duran Duran's new album Future Past came out last week and includes the track Tonight United, which was released last month. It is NOT about the Old Trafford club, although Taylor thought it was at first.

    "Simon Le Bon is a big Manchester United fan, and has been since he was a kid," Taylor explained. "We were in the studio together when he wrote that lyric and I said 'that's about United, isn't it!?'.

    "He said no, no, it's not. It's about people coming back together and reuniting after Covid. He really did assure me it has got nothing to do with the football team, although I am not sure I quite believe him."

    Duran Duran drummer Roger TaylorTaylor's first dream was a career between the sticks, rather than with them. "The first Villa player I idolised was a goalkeeper, Colin Withers. He was amazing and that kind of set me on a path to want to become a goalkeeper myself," he explained. "I was quite a good outfield player but I kind of liked being the unsung hero in goal. Unfortunately, I didn't really grow tall enough so I took up the drums instead. It's actually very similar – as a drummer you are the unsung hero too. You only get noticed when you make a mistake, and then people shout at you."

    Taylor first watched Villa as a young boy, but his family have followed the club for a lot longer than that.

    "It goes back generations really," he told BBC Sport. "I remember my grandad being a massive Villa fan like my dad, and there was never any possibility of me supporting any other team.

    "My dad started taking me to Villa Park when I was four or five years old. I still remember he used to sit me on the crush barrier on the Holte End terrace and stand behind me so I wouldn't get knocked off in the rush forward when we scored.

    "It just kind of gets in your blood, doesn't it? Their colours, everything. They are my team and they have been in my DNA ever since, through thick and thin.

    "Villa Park has changed a lot down the years, but it still has that beautiful Victorian frontage that takes you back to the early days. They have managed to develop it while still keeping the character of the ground.

    "Players seem to like playing there, and I love going back. It's me who takes my dad now, which is always great – he is coming up to his 86th birthday. We are going to the West Ham game together on Sunday, hopefully to see a win."

    Duran Duran (L-R): Roger Taylor, John Taylor, Simon Le Bon and Nick RhodesDuran Duran have sold more than 100m records since they formed in 1978. Future Past is their 15th studio album

    Premier League predictions – week 10
    Result Lawro Roger
    Leicester v Arsenal x-x 2-1 2-1
    Burnley v Brentford x-x 2-0 0-1
    Liverpool v Brighton x-x 3-0 4-0
    Man City v Crystal Palace x-x 3-0 3-1
    Newcastle v Chelsea x-x 0-2 1-2
    Watford v Southampton x-x 1-1 3-2
    Tottenham v Man Utd x-x 1-2 2-1
    Norwich v Leeds x-x 0-2 0-1
    Aston Villa v West Ham x-x 1-1 2-1
    Wolves v Everton x-x 2-0 2-0

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


    Games kick off at 15:00 BST (Saturday) & GMT (Sunday) unless otherwise stated.


    Leicester v Arsenal

    Leicester v Arsenal (12:30 BST)

    I am still not convinced by Arsenal, especially on the road. They are on a nice little unbeaten run but, other than Tottenham, they have not beaten anyone you wouldn't expect them to – their other wins were against Norwich, Burnley, AFC Wimbledon, Aston Villa and Leeds.

    The Gunners were fortunate to nick a point at home to Crystal Palace too and, although they have turned a corner in terms of results, really you are just waiting for the next poor performance from them – because it will come.

    Leicester left out Jamie Vardy for their Carabao Cup win over Brighton on Wednesday. He will be rested, ready and hungry for this game, and I have a strong feeling he will score.

    Lawro's prediction: 2-1

    Roger's prediction: Arsenal beat us comfortably last week but I fancy Leicester at home. 2-1

    Burnley v Brentford

    Burnley v Brentford

    Brentford have lost two on the spin in the league now, but they are not going to change the way they play – they will keep creating chances.

    Despite that, I am going for Burnley to get their first league win of the season – mostly on the basis that eventually they have got to win a game, but also because Ben Mee will be back in their defence.

    I think Clarets boss Sean Dyche will expect to beat Brentford at home too, so they will be on the front foot and get right into the Bees.

    Lawro's prediction: 2-0

    Roger's prediction: Brentford have made a good start to the season. I always see them scoring, but it is going to be close. 0-1

    Liverpool v Brighton

    Liverpool v Brighton

    Brighton have really impressed me so far and even when they were 3-0 down against Manchester City last weekend they kept going and caused City some problems.

    Playing against City and Liverpool is different gravy to the teams the Seagulls have beaten this season, though, so I am going for them to get the same result – a defeat.

    It is now 14 games unbeaten for Liverpool in all competitions this season, and they have won 11 of them.

    I am fortunate enough to know from my own playing days how their players must be feeling at the moment – whoever they play, they must think they will win because everyone is flying.

    Lawro's prediction: 3-0

    Roger's prediction: I can't see Brighton keeping Liverpool out. 4-0

    Man City v Crystal Palace

    Man City v Crystal Palace

    Manchester City's run of League Cup triumphs has ended at four in a row – the same number I managed with Liverpool.

    I don't think City boss Pep Guardiola will be too bothered about losing to West Ham on Wednesday, do you?

    Sure, he likes winning as many trophies as possible but now City will have three midweeks off in December and January, when in those previous seasons they've played twice a week virtually the whole way through. They will welcome that rest.

    Crystal Palace have been playing quite well, but drawing games. They will have to produce something exceptional to get anything here.

    Lawro's prediction: 3-0

    Roger's prediction: I was absolutely gutted to see Jack Grealish leave Villa in the summer because he was our captain and our talisman in the past few seasons and Villa through and through, but I understand why he moved on. He wanted to play Champions League football every season and win the big trophies and I think it would have been a mistake for him not to take the chance to go. I am happy for him, because he is the perfect fit for City in lots of ways. I'm a big fan of Palace striker Christian Benteke too, though. He was the ultimate striker when he was at Villa, and it would be fantastic if he ever came back to us.

    In terms of the game, Palace will score but City are going to be too strong for them. 3-1

    Newcastle v Chelsea

    Newcastle v Chelsea

    Newcastle have played all the teams from 13th to 18th in the Premier League and not beaten any of them, so I really don't give them much hope of getting their first win of the season against one of the title contenders, Chelsea.

    The Magpies have a glimmer of hope in that Callum Wilson is back fit and scoring for them but, even without Romelu Lukaku leading the line, Chelsea should win this comfortably.

    Lawro's prediction: 0-2

    Roger's prediction: Chelsea battered Norwich last week but they are still without Lukaku and I think this will be a lot closer. 1-2

    Watford v Southampton

    Watford v Southampton

    Watford's big win at Goodison Park arguably had more to do with Everton's late collapse than being a sign of how good the Hornets are but it was still a great result for them.

    It's very hard to know what to expect from Ranieri's side next – good or bad – so I am going for somewhere in between. Southampton are draw specialists after all.

    Lawro's prediction: 1-1

    Roger's prediction: It is hard to make these predictions because there have been so many freak results and ups and downs for teams from week to week – Watford's big win at Everton last week after their heavy defeat by Liverpool being a very good example. I have got a lot of time for Ranieri so I have got this one down as a high-scoring win for him. 3-2

    Tottenham v Man Utd

    Tottenham v Man Utd (17:30 BST)

    Solskjaer has got to make United difficult to beat. Forget any flamboyant football for now, they just need to start being more solid.

    With the players United have got, they are a counter-attacking team. They need to start playing like one, and soak up the pressure and play on the break.

    Don't give me the spiel that just pouring forward is 'the United way' because the game has changed completely from those days. They need to build from back to front, and give themselves a proper foundation.

    This is a tricky game to approach if you are a manager under pressure like Solskjaer is, but Tottenham are still quite scatty themselves so would not surprise me if United went there and won.

    Lawro's prediction: 1-2

    Roger's prediction: This is a tough one, I really struggled to decide which way it would go and what we would get from United – will they be on the floor again, or will we see them bounce back? I think we will see a response from them but this is a hard game for them so I have still gone with Spurs to win it, just about. 2-1


    Norwich v Leeds

    Norwich v Leeds (14:00 GMT)

    This is game number 10 of the Premier League season, taking us more than a quarter of the way through, so if you are a manager or a coach you will now have a really good idea what you can expect from your team during the rest of the campaign.

    Let's face it, things do not look very good for Norwich right now after their capitulation against Chelsea last weekend, and it is hard to see them improving much in the coming months.

    Snapshot showing the bottom of the Premier League: 15th Crystal Palace, 16th Southampton, 17th Leeds, 18th Burnley, 19th Newcastle, 20th NorwichGoing into the weekend, three Premier League sides are still winless – Burnley, Newcastle and Norwich. Leeds are among three teams who have won won once so far – their victory came over Watford at the start of October

    Leeds have been slow off the mark themselves, and given their form, this should be a home game for Norwich to target to win. I don't see that happening though.

    Lawro's prediction: 0-2

    Roger's prediction: Leeds have not had a great start to the season, but they are still a bit better than Norwich. 0-1

    Aston Villa v West Ham

    Aston Villa v West Ham (16:30 GMT)

    West Ham boss David Moyes can do no wrong at the moment, beating Spurs last weekend and then knocking holders Manchester City out of the Carabao Cup in midweek.

    Moyes might not get things all his own way on Sunday though. I am expecting a much better performance from Aston Villa than we saw from them against Arsenal last week. Put it this way, they need one.

    This is Moyes' 999th game as a manager. I've known him a long time and he is doing a top job. When he gets to 1,000 he might even buy me a drink – but then again why would he change the habit of a lifetime?

    Lawro's prediction: 1-1

    Roger's prediction: Deano [manager Dean Smith] will still be fuming about our defeat at the Emirates. 2-1

    Roger on Villa's season: We have lost our past three games but I have got the feeling the second half of the season is going to be much better because we have got a lot of new players to integrate into the team properly. We are still waiting for Leon Bailey to take off for us in the way that I think he will – when he came on against Everton last month he was on fire and, with more game time, he will do more of the same. We need players like that, who can grab games by the scruff of the neck like 'Super Jack' [Grealish] did.


    Wolves v Everton

    Wolves v Everton (20:00 GMT)

    Wolves have found a bit of form, with 10 points from their past five games.

    Everton, in contrast, have hit a bit of a blip, which is worrying. Two of their summer signings, Demarai Gray and Andros Townsend, have been great but I just wonder if teams have started to work them out a bit.

    Lawro's prediction: 2-0

    Roger's prediction: This another tricky one to call. Wolves lost their first three home games of the season but they are looking a lot stronger now. I've got a couple of mates who are Wolves fans, so I've got to keep them happy. 2-0

    Lawro was speaking to BBC Sport's Chris Bevan.

    How did Lawro do last week?

    Last weekend, Lawro got five correct results from 10 matches, with one exact score, for a total of 80 points.

    He was up against Elena Cole and Haydn Craven, stars of CBBC football drama Jamie Johnson – and he beat both of them, just about.

    Elena got four correct results, also with one exact score, giving her 70 points, while Haydn got six correct results, but with no exact scores, giving him 60 points. Elena's score is the one that counts towards the guest total in the scoreboards below.

    Lawro's League Table graphic

    TEAM P W D L PTS +/-
    =1 Man City 9 7 2 0 23 +6
    =1 Man Utd 9 7 2 0 23 +2
    3 Leeds 9 7 1 1 22 +14
    4 Leicester 9 6 3 0 21 +5
    =5 Liverpool 9 5 4 0 19 -3
    =5 Chelsea 9 5 4 0 19 -4
    7 Aston Villa 9 6 0 3 18 +6
    =8 Brighton 9 4 3 2 15 -3
    =8 West Ham 9 4 3 2 15 -4
    10 Tottenham 9 3 5 1 14 -4
    11 Arsenal 9 3 4 2 13 -1
    =12 Newcastle 9 2 3 4 9 +7
    =12 Everton 9 3 0 6 9 -4
    14 Wolves 9 2 2 5 8 -3
    15 Southampton 9 2 0 7 6 +1
    =16 Brentford 9 1 1 7 4 -4
    =16 Burnley 9 1 1 7 4 +2
    =16 Crystal Palace 9 1 1 4 4 -1
    =19 Norwich 9 0 2 7 2 +1
    =19 Watford 9 0 2 7 2 -5


    Score Guest
    110 Friction, She Drew The Gun
    83 Lawro (average after nine weeks)
    80 Tom McFarland
    70 Elena Cole
    60 Haydn Craven
    50 Aqib Khan, Shaun Thomas
    40 Dan Haggis of The Wombats, Justin Young
    30 Michael 'Venom' Page
    10 Tom Hughes
    Total scores after week nine
    Lawro 740
    Guests 540
    Lawro v Guests
    P9 W7 D1 L1

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    October 30, 2021
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