Plateau United v Enyimba @New Jos Stadium @4pm on Jan.5
Six points separate Nigeria Professional Football League [NPFL] leaders, Plateau United and Enyimba, who sit in 10th place, though the Aba side have two games in hand because of their involvement in the CAF Confederations Cup. Plateau United have won four of their five home matches while Enyimba are yet to win away this season. The Jos-based side will also look for an immediate response to the 3-0 loss suffered away to Abia Warriors on Matchday 11. Plateau United’s Abdu Maikaba mentioned fatigue as the main cause of the defeat having spent two days on the road to Umuahia. “Halfway to Makurdi, our bus broke down and we stayed for over seven hours repairing the bus,” Maikaba told the NPFL website. Will United have rested enough to get all three points off Enyimba or will the defending league champions have the guile to escape defeat?
Current Form: Plateau [L-W-D-W-L]; Enyimba [L-D-D-L-W]
Head to head
14/02/18 NPF Enyimba 1 – 0 Plateau
04/06/17 NPF Enyimba 1 – 0 Plateau
18/01/17 NPF Plateau 3 – 1 Enyimba
24/07/16 NPF Plateau 2 – 0 Enyimba
24/03/16 NPF Enyimba 1 – 0 Plateau
Prediction: Plateau 2-1 Enyimba
Liverpool v Everton @Anfield @4pm on Jan.5
This is the 235th Merseyside derby with the teams on opposite sides of achievements. Liverpool are European and world champions and are on course to rule the league after 30 years while Everton have started another rebuild with the appointment of Carlo Ancelotti. Everton have not beaten Liverpool in their last 20 meetings, their last win coming in 2011. We expect Jurgen Klopp to make extensive changes to his side to keep their freshness. Recruit, Takumi Minamino should get his debut for Liverpool with Ancelotti expected to send out a very strong team to gain momentum. The Italian said at the pre-match press conference his team must be perfect to beat the runaway league leaders. “You have to produce a great performance; a normal performance is not enough against them. Everything has to be perfect – no mistakes, work hard, intensity – the game has to be complete.” It should be a very lively encounter.
Current Form: Liverpool [W-W-W-W-W]; Everton [L-W-W-D-L]
Head to head
04/12/19 PRL Liverpool 5 – 2 Everton
03/03/19 PRL Everton 0 – 0 Liverpool
02/12/18 PRL Liverpool 1 – 0 Everton
07/04/18 PRL Everton 0 – 0 Liverpool
05/01/18 FAC Liverpool 2 – 1 Everton
Prediction: Liverpool 2-1 Everton
Napoli v Inter Milan @Stadio San Paolo @7:45pm on Jan.6
The San Paolo has been a tough place to visit for Inter Milan – their last win on that ground coming in October 1997. Inter, under new manager, Antonio Conte, have risen to the Serie A summit, scoring goals and have tasted just one league defeat all season. Napoli sacked Carlo Ancelotti and employed former AC Milan player and manager, Gennaro Gattuso, to revive the fortunes of Juventus’ closest challengers for the past two seasons, having already fallen 18 points and seven places behind Monday’s visitors. Early signs have been average, but taking Inter’s scalp could kick off an extended winning run. Napoli will have to do without the injured Kalidou Koulibaly. Conte will set up his team for the rapid counter, soaking up all Napoli possession – sucking them in and hitting at every opportunity.
Current Form: Napoli [W-L-W-D-L]; Inter Milan [W-D-L-D-W]
Head to head
19/05/19 SEA Napoli 4 – 1 Inter Milan
26/12/18 SEA Inter Milan 1 – 0 Napoli
11/03/18 SEA Inter Milan 0 – 0 Napoli
21/10/17 SEA Napoli 0 – 0 Inter Milan
30/04/17 SEA Inter Milan 0 – 1 Napoli
Prediction: Napoli 2-4 Inter Milan
Getafe v Real Madrid @Coliseum Alfonso Perez @3pm on Jan.4
Real Madrid lost the opportunity to start 2020 at par with Barcelona, so traveling to face a dangerous team as Getafe needs all the caution and experience to ensure they snag all three points. Zinedine Zidane is without the suspended Sergio Ramos, and Eden Hazard is still out injured. Jose Bordalas’ Getafe team exceeded expectations in the first half of the season and are just seven points off their visitors, in sixth place – two points off a Champions League place. Angel Luis Rodriguez Diaz will lead the Getafe assault, having already scored eight league goals while Los Blancos have Karim Benzema in good form though they have drawn their last three league games.
Current Form: Getafe [L-W-W-W-W]; Real Madrid [D-D-D-W-W]
Head to head
25/04/19 LAL Getafe 0 – 0 Real Madrid
19/08/18 LAL Real Madrid 2 – 0 Getafe
03/03/18 LAL Real Madrid 3 – 1 Getafe
14/10/17 LAL Getafe 1 – 2 Real Madrid
16/04/16 LAL Getafe 1 – 5 Real Madrid
Prediction: Getafe 0-2 Real Madrid
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