IKTS Week 35: At Newcastle/

Arsenal dominated Chelsea, scoring three goals in a little bit over 30 minutes. The first two goals consisted of a brace by Odegaard twice assisted by Xhaka, and the third also involved Xhaka, as his attempt was only cleared as far as Jesus who scored the third. The second half was less exciting, but Madueke was able to score a consolation goal for Chelsea as Zinchenko was gone fishing.

The weekend started with a very exciting game that Crystal Palace won 4-3 against West Ham. Brentford came from behind for a 2-1 victory against Nottingham Forest. Brighton walloped Wolverhampton 6-0 without mercy. Bournemouth won 4-1 against Leeds, prompting the sacking of Gracia and his replacement by Allardyce. Fulham played well but narrowly lost 1-2 at home to Manchester City. Manchester United went one nil over Aston Villa, the first loss for Aston Villa since their loss at home to Arsenal. Newcastle won 3-1 logically against relegation bound Southampton. Liverpool raced to a 3-0 lead, but the noisy neighbors eventually scored three goals of their own then something Spursy happened, and Jota scored a goal and 4-3 winner for the hosts at the death. Leicester and Everton ended up 2-2 with Maddison sending a spot kick straight at Pickford. Liverpool went one nil at home to Fulham courtesy of a Salah penalty. Manchester City did not score in the first half but did thrice in the second half for a 3-0 final score at home to West Ham. Finally, an exceptional game saw Brighton win a high quality encounter. As the referee was about to whistle to put an end to the proceedings, Shaw was adjudged by VAR to have handballed the football on a corner, and the match official agreed after consulting the on pitch (but actually slightly off pitch if you are imbued with a hunger for nuances) monitor. Mac Allister duly converted the spot kick, denying de Gea a clean sheet and denying Manchester United a point.

Overall, the ten active participants combined for 134 points (for an average of 13 and 4/10 points per active participant) and there were 14 correct IKTS predictions. The thirteen games for the Week ended up with eleven wins for home teams versus a single win by a visiting team and there was only one draw. Overall, 49 goals were scored for an average of 3 and 10/13 goals per game.

Scores for the week:

skinnejay 19 (4)
ClevelandJames 19 (2)
Ray from Norfolk 15 (2)
Geaux_HR 14 (2)
billvacation 13 (1)
Purple & Proud 13 (1)
ben from portsmouth 13 (0)
hansdampf 12 (1)
Seidman 12 (0)
Sonny from Suffolk 4 (0)

Stars of the week: skinnejay is in first on 19 points (and four correct IKTS predictions) with ClevelandJames in second also on 19 points (but only two correct IKTS predictions) while Ray from Norfolk is in third on 15 points (and two correct IKTS predictions) but Geaux_HR is right behind with 14 points. There are also three contestants on 13 points and another two on 12 points.

Clever pick of the week: Only skinnejay had the exact score for Manchester United versus Aston Villa. There were also two correct predictions apiece for Newcastle versus Southampton and for Brentford versus Nottingham Forest. There were also four exact predictions for Manchester City versus West Ham and five correct predictions for Arsenal versus Chelsea.

Crisis pick of the week: Not surprisingly, billvacation is the only participant to believe that Arsenal would not win at home against Chelsea. For this game, five participants hauled 3 points and one IKTS while three hauled a single point and one participant, who was expecting a win for Arsenal, completely forgot to post any predictions for any games except those played on Saturday.

Standings after week 34:

Ray from Norfolk 280 (34)
skinnejay 271 (38)
Purple & Proud 266 (33)
ClevelandJames 266 (27)
hansdampf 254 (34)
Geaux_HR 254 (33)
Seidman 247 (30)
billvacation 239 (27)
Sonny from Suffolk 236 (25)
ben from portsmouth 233 (24)
luismamontes 220 (28)
rswansont 209 (22)
AsemBuckets 154 (13)
Mulz 113 (16)
DustyGooner 9 (2)

After week 34, Ray from Norfolk leads skinnejay by nine points while Purple & Proud and ClevelandJames are fourteen points off the pace, with Purple & Proud currently on the podium thanks to a superior (33 versus 27) IKTS haul.

Upcoming schedule: Saturday May 6, Sunday May 7, and Monday May 8:

Bournemouth - Chelsea
Manchester City - Leeds
Tottenham - Crystal Palace
Wolverhampton - Aston Villa
Liverpool - Brentford
Newcastle - Arsenal
West Ham - Manchester United
Fulham - Leicester
Brighton - Everton
Nottingham Forest - Southampton