Four football matches to watch this weekend

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Kano Pillars vs Plateau United @Sani Abacha Stadium @4pm Feb 12

Can Plateau claim four straight league wins?

It’s always been a tight affair and there have only been two goals in the last five clashes.

Plateau United are on a three-game winning streak that has taken them to third in the NPFL table, two points adrift of leaders Remo Stars, so a win on Sunday could see them rise to the top as their visitors, after a lukewarm start to the season, have started to gain momentum.

The stalwarts have 14 points from 11 matches and 11 of the 14 points have come at home where they haven’t lost despite drawing twice in five home games.

Plateau United, however, have not been good travelers – losing four and winning once on the road this season.

Current form: Pillars of Kano [L-D-W-W-L]; Utd Plateau [W-W-W-L-W]

Face-to-face

30/05/21 NPF Plateau Utd 0 – 0 Pillars of Kano

13/01/21 NPF Kano Pillars 1 – 0 Plateau Utd

01/12/19 NPF Plateau Utd 0 – 0 Pillars of Kano

05/05/19 NPF Kano Pillars 1 – 0 Utd Board

27/01/19 NPF Plateau Utd 0 – 0 Pillars of Kano

Prediction: Kano Pillars 1-0 Plateau Utd

Napoli v Inter Milan @Stadio Diego Armando Maradona at 6pm on February 12

Osimhen’s Revenge

During the first episode last November, Victor Osimhen fractured his eye socket, an injury which somewhat derailed Napoli as they chased their first Serie A title since 1990.

The Nigerian is back, albeit playing with a face mask, but he scored last weekend to bring Napoli within a point of the league leaders, who didn’t look as smooth as before the short winter break.

Alessandro Bastoni and Joaquín Correa are absent from Inter Milan’s squad playing on Sunday while Napoli have a full squad with the return of Kalidou Koulibaly from Cameroon where he captained Senegal to a first-ever AFCON title.

According to Football Italia, there is another angle to Saturday’s encounter.

“The 62-year-old Italian coach has faced his counterpart Nerazzurri 11 times but Spalletti has never beaten Inzaghi playing at home.”

Inter top the table with 53 points from 23 matches with Napoli second (courtesy goals scored) with 52 points from 24 matches.

Current form: Naples [W-W-W-L-W]; InterMilan [W-L-W-W-D]

Face-to-face

21/11/21 SEA Inter Milan 3 – 2 Napoli

18/04/21 SEA Napoli 1 – 1 Inter Milan

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16/12/20 SEA Inter Milan 1 – 0 Napoli

28/07/20 SEA Inter Milan 2 – 0 Napoli

13/06/20 COI Napoli 1 – 1 Inter Milan

Prediction: Napoli 2-1 Inter Milan

Man. Utd v Southampton @Old Trafford at 1.30pm on February 12

Rangnick’s men need a strong performance against the Saints

United are not where they want to be and Ralf Rangnick and the supporters will expect a backlash when they host Southampton in the lunchtime kick-off on Saturday.

A defeat and draw against teams they were expected to beat in their last two games has left the Red Devils without a trophy for the fourth consecutive season, but they must ensure they secure a Champions League ticket at the end of the season.

Meanwhile, the Saints continued their journey with a win over Tottenham on Wednesday which puts them in good spirits heading to Old Trafford.

Ralph Hasenhuttl will likely name a team unchanged from the one that started against Spurs.

How will Rangnick respond to widespread calls to drop United captain Harry Maguire, after another chaotic display against the Burnley basement last Tuesday?

Current form: Man. Utd [D-L-W-W-D]; Southampton [W-W-D-L-W]

Face-to-face

22/08/21 PRL Southampton 1 – 1 Man. Utd

02/02/21 PRL Man. United 9 – 0 Southampton

29/11/20 PRL Southampton 2 – 3 Man. Utd

13/07/20 PRL Man. United 2 – 2 Southampton

31/08/19 PRL Southampton 1 – 1 Man. Utd

Prediction: Man. United 3-1 Southampton

Villarreal v Real Madrid @Estadio de la Cerámica at 4.15pm on February 12

Beating Real Madrid is a dream for the Yellow Submarine

Unai Emery’s Villarreal have lost once in their last five matches and that form has seen the Yellow Submarine climb the La Liga table to sixth with 35 points, but they are 18 points behind visitors La Ceramica Saturday.


READ ALSO: United Score Nine Goals Past Southampton To Reach Top With Manchester City


Carlo Ancelotti will be without top scorer Karim Benzema, but Casemiro is expected to be back in the squad for this encounter.

The first installment ended scoreless and Madrid have lost just twice in the league this season and will be looking to get a positive result as they take on PSG in the Champions League.

Current form: Villarreal [D-L-W-W-D]; real Madrid [W-W-D-L-W]

Face-to-face

25/09/21 LAL Real Madrid 0 – 0 Villarreal

22/05/21 LAL Real Madrid 2 – 1 Villarreal

21/11/20 LAL Villarreal 1 – 1 Real Madrid

07/16/20 LAL Real Madrid 2 – 1 Villarreal

01/09/19 LAL Villarreal 2 – 2 Real Madrid

Prediction: Villarreal 1-1 Real Madrid

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