Predictions League: Southampton, Sunderland, Newcastle, Q.P.R, West Ham, Everton – How will they fare?

Our panel give serious thought to this weekend's fixtures

I realise our massive fan base will be more than anxious to check out the latest Salut! Predictions League table, but they’ll have to wait.

Lack of time and a steward’s enquiry into the accuracy of the league table, means I will get to it during the not so festive period. Right in between the darts and one of my many siestas.

As I generally don’t know my arse from my elbow during the Xmas fortnight, trying to figure out which day it is becomes practically impossible. I’m an advocate for the Xmas break in the Premier League – so we’re certainly having one here.

So, I’ll take this opportunity to wish everybody a merry chr… hahaha – I’m afraid I can’t bring myself to. Here’s the predictions yaaaa’ll.

Southampton v Sunderland

Jake: Saints 0 Sunderland 1. I don’t really believe this.

Malcolm: My head says we won’t get anything from this one and will lose 2-0. My heart expects us to get something and a 2-0 win. So I’m going with my epiglottis and well settle for a 2-2 draw.

Sixer: A game neither side can afford to lose. They have tightened up their defence while ours is as stable as a Christmas jelly. Wickham to get at least one. 2-2.

The rest: Goldy 1-2. Bill  0-1.  Colin 0-2. Robert  1-2.  Jeremy 1-2. John Mac 1-2.

Newcastle v Q.P.R

Colin: I’m afraid I really want the Mags to win this and keep ‘Arry deep in trouble. Newcastle are also relegation rivals so there is merit is them losing, too, but not quite as much as things stand. I also regard them as a better team than Rangers. 3-1

Bill: Newcastle 2 QPR 0  If the Barcodes can’t beat QPR at home, then maybe it’s Alan “Christmas is cancelled” Pardew who should be looking for another job. It’s by no means a cut-and-dried result, though.

Goldy: Neee snidey copying tactics from me this week, I promise. Let’s get this right, I’m not particularly enjoying Newcastle’s slump – not while we’re in danger ourselves. It won’t always end like it did in 08/09 and that’s frightening. There’s jitters eleven miles up the road, however, and a rejuvenated Q.P.R to nick a point here. 1-1.

The rest: Jake 1-1. Malcolm 1-1. Sixer 1-2. Robert  2-1. Jeremy  1-2. John Mac 1-1.

West Ham v Everton

Robert:Without Fellaini Everton will struggle to dominate teams like they have so often this season. I expect a dull 1-1 draw in this one.

John Mac: EFC haven’t had it all their own recently but Sam’s had a couple of injuries and tends to fight hard at home. So 1-1 with neither team firing on all cylinders.

Jeremy: It doesn’t matter whether or not you approve or admire Big Sam’s approach to management. The man tends to get good results wherever he goes. West Ham are galvanised under Sam’s leadership and have surprised those who expected a relegation battle for the Hammers. This should be a really tight game so I’m going for West Ham 1 Everton 1.

The rest: Jake 1-2. Malcolm 2-0. Sixer 1-1. Colin 1-2. Bill 1-3. Goldy 2-1.

See also: Monsieur Salut talks all things Sunderland at ESPN FC:

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Christmas greetings from Salut! Sunderland: Guess the Southampton & Manchester City scores

Be a mug, says Jake, and enter the competition

One big festival. Two big games. Two big chances to win Guess the Score.

The first bit is easy. Salut! Sunderland‘s tireless team of writers and illustrators – all, or nearly all, fellow supporters of that great thing that is SAFC – offers all readers, from near and far, a wonderful Christmas.

Read moreChristmas greetings from Salut! Sunderland: Guess the Southampton & Manchester City scores

Southampton Who are You?: Channon, Keegan, Le Tissier – and Kenwyne’s coldness allergy

Jake asks the question

The return of a fixture popular among exiled Sunderland fans in the deep south, Southampton away; I recall seeing lots of our supporters on the Isle of Wight ferry when heading for a short break after one match. Eugene McManus, a Southampton fan since boyhood, is the gaffer at The Saints**, a pub named after the team more than half a century ago and welcoming to “housetrained” away followers (though it’s in Millbrook, about five miles from St Mary’s stadium) …

Read moreSouthampton Who are You?: Channon, Keegan, Le Tissier – and Kenwyne’s coldness allergy

Predictions League: Sunderland, Baggies, Newcastle, Southampton, Liverpool, Swansea – How will they fare?

I think it goes without saying that we all just KNEW that Q.P.R would have an appointment sorted in time for our game. But, at the old cliche goes, one game at a time n all that! let’s see how many go for the tactic of predicting Sunderland to win and Newcastle to lose this week.

It certainly would have bagged people points last week, adopting such methods. Dinner time kick off (not lunchtime as I’m Northern and working class) and the Sky cameras for the lads today. And it’s coooold. My toes are numb and spirits surprisingly high, despite watching the horror show that was Plains Farm Under 9’s losing to a far inferior opposition. Oops, I’m not allowed to speak like that in junior football, as it’s the sole reason England are crap at senior level. Apparently.

The predictions are:

Sunderland v West Brom

Bill:The Baggies have been playing above themselves and look rather like a square peg in a fourth place round hole. It can’t last. The Cats have a bit of momentum going, have rediscovered where the net is and should knock them off their Chelski-beating pedestal. There are half a dozen of our guys capable of scoring the goals. 3-1.

Colin: Wins back-to-back are not something we tend to do but if we want to be taken seriously, we must build on the Fulham result and show we can beat 11 men as well as 10.  I’ll not be as bold as I’d like to by predicting goals galore for us, coming from midfield as well as Fletcher, and will suggest an edgy but just about deserved 1-0.

Goldy: If we hadn’t had grabbed that win at Fulham on Sunday, I’d be bricking it about this fixture. West Brom are having the season we were supposed to be having – keep an eye on Steve Clarke. I love a good theory based on law of averages, and that’s what I’m going on here. Only whipping boys and top four side are normally good/bad enough to break the wonderful concept of law of averages and I’m hoping we are above the whipping boys level. West Brom shouldn’t win two consecutive Premier League games away against mid table sides and we shouldn’t lose two at home. That’s my rationale. A nervous 1-0.

The rest: Jake 2-0. Malcolm 3-1. John Mac 2-1. Jeremy 2-1. Robert 1-1. Sixer 2-0.

Southampton v Newcastle

John Mac:Nufc’s lack of form continues and they struggle to contain Southampton’s attack. 1-1, with at least one red card

Robert: A draw against Swansea and a win against QPR will have Southampton
full of confidence. Newcastle will be short on confidence as results
haven’t been going their way and Cabaye just had surgery which will
rule him out for awhile. All that adds up to a 2-2 draw.

The rest: Jake 1-0. Malcolm 2-1. Bill 2-2. Jeremy 2-0. Colin 1-2. Sixer 2-1. Goldy 1-1.

Swansea v Liverpool
After Swansea’s great, nae, magnificent win against the enemy last week, they will keep up the good work and win 1-0.

Malcolm: You’ve picked another toughie here. Both sides are playing reasonably well but for the Scousers it will all depend upon whether Suarez fires or not. I’ll sit on the fence 1-1.

Jeremy: Liverpool are anything but predictable it seems. I do foresee and away win here at Rogers returns to his short lived stomping ground in the west of Wales. Two nout to the Scousers in this one. 0-2.

The rest: John Mac 1-1. Bill 2-1. Robert 2-3. Colin 2-1. Sizer 1-1. Goldy 1–1.

Football Pinks and Greens: Sunderland, Sheffield, Southampton battle on as Portsmouth dies

Happy days

Last month, the Sports Mail – one of only four Saturday evening football papers still in operation in Britain – bit the dust. That leaves The Pink in Southampton, the Green ‘Un in Sheffield and the Football Echo in Sunderland. Must we accept even their days are numbered? There’s a response to that question from the Echo management …

Read moreFootball Pinks and Greens: Sunderland, Sheffield, Southampton battle on as Portsmouth dies

Calling witty, warm and wise Reading, Southampton and West Ham fans

Jake asks the question

In June last year, Salut! Sunderland put out a little appeal for knowledgeable supporters of QPR, Norwich City and Swansea to offer their services as interviewees in our Who are You? series.

Read moreCalling witty, warm and wise Reading, Southampton and West Ham fans

Sunderland’s is best. Name the worst from Crystal Palace, Oxford United, Portsmouth, Bristol Rovers, Chelsea, Doncaster, Swansea, Darlington, Wimbledon and Southampton

Sixer by Jake

Pete Sixsmith
‘s bulky but now gym-honed frame has graced just about every ground known to football. Here’s his response to a highly personal survey naming the Stadium of Light as the best you’ll find …

Read moreSunderland’s is best. Name the worst from Crystal Palace, Oxford United, Portsmouth, Bristol Rovers, Chelsea, Doncaster, Swansea, Darlington, Wimbledon and Southampton

Muted welcomes for Reading and Southampton; mixed outlook for Wigan and Blackburn

Sixer by Jake (the Soapbox is hidden)

The only certainty among the four clubs mentioned above is Reading, promoted thanks to the 1-0 win over Forest. Southampton look set to join them but may still have a little work to do while Wigan’s sensational recent wins have not yet ensured survival. Pete Sixsmith looks at the likely comings and goings and shamelessly allows his preferences to be dictated by geography, politics and beer …

Read moreMuted welcomes for Reading and Southampton; mixed outlook for Wigan and Blackburn

Salut!’s week: a Chelsea build-up and a Newcastle putdown

Another of those retrospective looks, for the reader in a hurry, at what has been served up in recent days …

Breaks for internationals act a little like “slow down” signals for Salut! Sunderland.

Occasional contributors do not think of tossing anything our way. M Salut was away in Rome in any case, for a long weekend devoid of football unless you count a look round the Colisseum, a model – in terms of the building rather than original purpose – for the stadiums of today.

And for once, not even Pete Sixsmith could be trusted to return from some non-league backwater with flashes of entertaining prose. It remains to be seen whether he chooses to write about his own trip, a few days in Antwerp.

Read moreSalut!’s week: a Chelsea build-up and a Newcastle putdown

Bravo Sheffield, Southampton & Portsmouth: in the pink with Sunderland

Capturing happier derby days

Both Pete Sixsmith and I have revelled in nostalgia for the Saturdays that were incomplete without a) football (honest, we saw football on Saturdays) and b) the “Pink” on the way home.

For home games, that meant getting off the train in Durham and having time before the connection to Bishop Auckland to drop down into town, have coffee and a pie and buy the football paper. We hoped the Echo would come before we had to climb back up the hill; sometimes we had to make do with the Newcastle Evening Chronicle version though on a good day we could get both.

Read moreBravo Sheffield, Southampton & Portsmouth: in the pink with Sunderland