London Soccer Shorts…

Brian Jeeves
Latest posts by Brian Jeeves (see all)

Saturday, October 7

Premier League

Luton Town v Tottenham Hotspur – Kenilworth Road

Ange Postecoglou has a further injury concern to deal with after it was confirmed that Manor Solomon could miss up to two months with a knee injury.

Solomon joins a list of sidelined Spurs players including Ivan Perisic, Ryan Sessegnon, Alfie Whiteman, Rodrigo Bentancur and Giovani Lo Celso.

Brennan Johnson is also a doubt for the clash with newly-promoted Luton, while Bryan Gil is on the road to recovery from a groin injury, however, the trip to Kenilworth Road comes tyoo soon for him to feature.

Burnley v Chelsea – Turf Moor

Chelsea skipper Reece James will miss the Blues trip to Burnley after he was handed a one-match suspension and a £90,000 fine after he was charged with using improper, insulting and abusive words and behaviour towards a match official during the West Londoners 1-0 defeat at the hands of Ason Villa last month.

Nevertheless, boss Mauricio Pochettino was buoyed by his sides’ 2-0 derby win at Fulham on Monday evening and will be confident that his side can make it back-to-back wins on the road at Turf Moor. 

Fulham v Sheffield United – Craven Cottage

Fulham boss Marco Silva will be looking for a response from his side when Sheffield United visits Craven Cottage on Saturday afternoon.

The West Londoners were beaten 2-0 at home by local rivals Chelsea on Monday night and have won just two of their seven Premier League matches to date.

However, they should be confident of a return to winning ways against the Blades who are bottom of the table, without a win and have conceded nineteen times to date.

Silva looks likely to be without injured trio, Kenny Tete, Tosin Adarabioyo and Adama Traore.

Manchester United v Brentford – Old Trafford

Tomas Frank is without a clutch of his stars ahead of Brentford’s trip to Manchester United.

The Bees boss must do without Rico Henry, Kevin Schade, Shandon Baptiste, Ben Mee, Mikkel Damsgaard and Josh Dasilva through injury, while Ivan Toney remains suspended despite returning to action in a behind-closed-doors fixture with Italian Seri B outfit Como during the week.

Crystal Palace v Nottingham Forest – Selhurst Park

Crystal Palace boss Roy Hodgson will be looking for a change of fortune when his side hosts Nottingham Forest on Saturday.

Palace are yet to beat Forest in the Premier League. Hodgson, who takes charge of his four hundredth top-flight fixture, will be hoping it’s a case of seventh-time lucky after three draws and as many defeats against the East Midlanders.

Sky Bet Championship

Cardiff City v Watford – Cardiff City Stadium

Troubled Watford have handed Head Coach Valerien Ismael a contract extension despite their recent run of poor form.

The Hornets have won only one of their last nine Championship outings and currently sit one place above the dropzone following their midweek defeat at Sunderland.

Ismael will be without defender Ryan Andrews through suspension after he was sent off in the latter stage of Watford’s loss at the Stadium of Light.

Millwall v Hull City – The Den

Millwall v Hull City at The Den

Erratic Millwall will be looking to build on their midweek win at Plymouth Argyle when Hull City visits The Den.

The Lions moved into the top half of the table following their success in the West Country. Speaking to BBC Radio London, Millwall boss, Gary Rowett said: “I thought we were diligent, I thought we were professional, I thought we were very, very concentrated and I think we made it very, very difficult for Plymouth to break us down.

“They had a lot of possession, the manager spoke about it before the game that he needed his team to move the ball a little bit better and keep the ball and put us under pressure.

“I felt as though if we just defended fifteen yards deeper, it would just give us that opportunity to transition well and I thought we did it very well against Middlesbrough in the first game of the season and I thought tonight was a similar type of game.

“I thought we had to be patient, we had to wait, and when we needed the moment to pick them off we had the quality to do that and it’s very, very pleasing.”

Queens Park Rangers v Blackburn Rovers – Loftus Road

relegation-threatened QPR will be looking for a change of fortune when fellow strugglers Blackburn head to West London on Saturday.

The R’s sit third from bottom following their midweek defeat at Leeds United – their sixth of the season. However, they face a Rovers side in freefall following four losses on the bounce.

Gareth Ainsworth will hope to have goalkeeper Asmir Begovic available after the club lodged an appeal over his dismissal at Elland Road.

Sky Bet League One

Charlton Athletic v Blackpool – The Valley

Charlton Athletic v Blackpool at The Valley

Charlton will be looking for their fourth home victory on the bounce when Blackpool visits The Valley.

The Addicks came from behind to see off ten-man Exeter City by four goals to one during the week. Speaking to CharltonTV, boss Michael Appleton said: “We got it right tonight.

“The players looked like they were enjoying themselves. Even at 11 v 11, when we went 2-1 ahead, they were playing with a bit of freedom. And when they do that, because of the type of group that they are they can be very dangerous.”

Leyton Orient v Reading – Brisbane Road

Leyton Orient v Reading at Brisbane Road

Orient returns to action against struggling Reading and will mourn the life of life-long supporter Derek Reynolds who passed away after receiving medical treatment after falling ill during the O’s League One match with Lincoln City during the week.

Supporters alert referee Stephen Martin to stop the game by running onto the pitch late in the second half. The match was suspended and eventually abandoned after an hour.

A statement posted on said;

Derek was a life-long O’s supporter and he lived in Osbourne Road, a short walk from the ground for many years. As well as being a lifelong fan, Derek was heavily involved in the club and managed the club’s tannoy system during the 1990s.

The club will be paying tribute to Derek at Saturday’s home fixture against Reading and his family have been invited to the game as guests of the club.

A book of condolence will be available for supporters in the East Stand to sign on Saturday and it will then be available for all fans in West Stand reception thereafter. 

We would, once again, like to thank Derek’s fellow supporters for the way in which they conducted themselves on Tuesday night and acted to try and help the situation. 

Sky Bet League Two

Mansfield Town v AFC Wimbledon 

AFC Wimbledon will be looking for their fourth Sky Bet League Two win on the bounce but will find the going tough against unbeaten Mansfield Town at the One Call Stadium.

The Dons won by an early Omar Bugiel goal to nil at Harrogate Town during the week, moving them up to second in the table. Speaking to, boss, Johnnie Jackson said: “We had a really solid defensive structure. Although the scoreline wasn’t comfortable, I felt comfortable within the game. 

“I think my boys were good out of possession and when we needed to be aggressive in wide areas we stuck crosses in. I don’t think Alex Bass has had a save to make. As far as 1-0 goes, it’s as comfortable a 1-0 as you’re going to see.”

Sutton United v Walsall – VBS Community Stadium

Bottom of the table Sutton United host Walsall, hoping to end a run of ten league matches without a win.

Their Tuesday night setback to Salford City was their ninth of the campaign, leaving them five points from safety.

Speaking to, boss Matt Gray said: “The first goal gave them a lift and made it hard for us. And then the second goal is a real blow for us.

“We just huffed and puffed for a period, and then we had some moments real late on, three really good chances to try and get one late on and ask some questions in the dying stages.

“But unfortunately, we couldn’t take one of those good opportunities we had at the death.” 

Sunday, October 8

Premier League 

West Ham United v Newcastle United – London Stadium

Doubtful? West Ham United’s Michail Antonio (Kieran Galvin ActionFotoSport)

David Moyes could be without striker Michail Antonio after the player missed Thursday’s UEFA Europa League tie with SC Freiburg with a tight adductor muscle.

“We don’t know yet if he will be ready for the weekend, we just have to try and get him through a few days training if possible and see how he is in his recovery,” Moyes told

The Scotsman is already without injured duo Aaron Cresswell and Ben Johnson for the visit of Newcastle United. The Hammers will be keen for revenge after the Magpies won 5-1 in East London last season.

Arsenal v Manchester City – Emirates Stadium 

Unbeaten Arsenal has an opportunity to put down a marker of their title credentials when cham[pions Manchester City heads to North London on Sunday.

City were surprisingly beaten at Wolverhampton Wanderers last weekend, while Arsenal moved up to third with a resounding 4-0 victory at AFC Bournemouth.

Nevertheless, the Gunners were on the wrong end of the result when facing RC Lens in the Champions League during the week, with Bukayo Saka hobbling off shortly after the half-hour mark making him a doubt for the City clash.

Speaking to about the England star’s injury, Gunners boss, Mikel Arteta said: “He tried to backheel the ball in the first half and felt something, it was something muscular and he was uncomfortable to carry on so we had to take him off.

“We don’t know anything more than that, obviously it was big enough not to allow him to continue to play the game and that’s obviously a worry for us.”

When asked whether the player would face City, Areta added: “I have no clue, I don’t know.”


Brian Jeeves