Jamie Carragher backs Arsenal to win the Premier League title with Man City distracted by the Champions League, but Gary Neville insists Pep Guardiola’s side will ‘hunt them down’: Sky Sports pundits give their mid-season predictions
- The Sky pundits delivered predictions on many key areas of the Premier League
- They disagreed on who would win the league and finish in the top four
- Erling Haaland was the agreed pick to win the Player of the Year come May
Jamie Carragher has backed Arsenal to keep up their good form and win the Premier League in his mid-season predictions.
The Gunners are five points clear at the top of the table with a game in hand over closest rivals Manchester City, but half of the season still remains for Mikel Arteta’s side to see out if they are to win their first league title in nearly 20 years.
Gary Neville, meanwhile, backed City to chase the Londoners down, insisting the defending champions are ‘still messing about’ in their pursuit to defend their crown.
Jamie Carragher has tipped Arsenal to win the league, while Gary Neville has backed Manchester City
The Sky Sports pundits gave their mid-season predictions on Monday Night Football
Carragher (left) and Neville (right) disagreed on several topics while delivering their picks
‘I think the thing with Arsenal is not just the points gap, it’s their performance in big games’, Carragher said. ‘If you go back to the World Cup finishing, they obliterated Brighton, drew with Newcastle, the best defence in the league, although they only just got over the line (against Manchester United on Sunday).
‘We’re all expecting City to kick on, they will, but once they start getting to March and April I cant help but think those City players know that if they win the Champions League it won’t matter that they wont win the league.’
Neville, frustrated, replied: ‘I get asked this every 10 minutes at the moment. Even Arsenal fans, they must get tired of asking these questions.
Both pundits agreed that City were still to get going properly and reach their best this season
‘It’s too far out to be thinking about the title. Going back to my own experience, I think City are still messing about, they haven’t really started this season yet, when they start to purr they will hunt Arsenal down.
‘That doesn’t always work. Blackburn held us (Neville’s Manchester United) off, Newcastle didn’t. The run in doesn’t start until nine games in.
‘I’ve done three Arsenal games since the World Cup and I’ve been impressed every time. Forget the first half against Tottenham, they managed it really well in the second half. On Sunday they responded to going a goal down and persisted with their football all the way through.
‘I’ve been massively impressed with them, but with young players I won’t believe it until he end of the season. I am amazed they’re in the conversation.’
Neville was wary of the potential of a lack of experience costing Arsenal in the title race
Carragher backed Newcastle to continue their good form and finish in the Champions League places this year
Carragher went on to back Newcastle to finish inside the top four, referencing their defensive qualities and lack of European football as a deciding factor.
‘They’re not involved in European football and they’re defensively the best team in the league’, he said.
Neville was perplexed, before backing Marcelo Bielsa to get Everton out of trouble if he is appointed as Frank Lampard’s replacement at Goodison Park, claiming: ‘I think you can see Bielsa’s influence at Leeds now. He’d get the fans on side at Everton.’
Both pundits backed Erling Haaland to win Player of the Year amid his incredible goal scoring form, but Carragher was quick to shout-out Martin Odegaard as a contender.
Both pundits predicted top scorer Erling Haaland would win Player of the Year come May
‘Odegaard has been fantastic this year’, the former Liverpool defender said. ‘If Arsenal win the title, the role of Odegaard will be vital.
‘Arsenal have been fortunate with injuries. If they get two or three players out at the same time I don’t think they’ll gel across the team. If I was Arteta, I’d forget the Europa League. They will not be in this position next season.’
Both Carragher and Neville also backed Arsenal’s Arteta to win the Manager of the Year award.