IKTS Week 24: At West Ham.

Arsenal pressed Liverpool from the get go and, after coming close early on, a quick move saw Odegaard sending Havertz for a one on one against Alisson who saved but Saka was there to score. The rest of the first half was mostly dominated by Arsenal but a mix-up involving Saliba and Raya allowed Diaz to nick the ball speculatively in the direction of an unaware Gabriel who sent the ball in the net with his arm. The game had started with a cohort of players missing: Partey, Timber, Jesus, Vieira, and Tomiyasu for Arsenal, while Salah, Endo, Bradley, Szoboszlai, Doak, Matip, Tsimikas, and Bajcetic were missing out for Liverpool. After the intermission, Liverpool dominated possession until a speculative long ball by Gabriel found Martinelli in acres of space and another mix-up (this time involving Liverpool's VVD and Alisson) allowed the Arsenal number 11 to easily roll the ball in the goal. While Arsenal secured (LOL) six yellow cards, Liverpool only had three until Konate was judged to have held Havertz on a counter, meaning a red card came forth, killing any chance of comeback for Liverpool. In extra time, Trossard (on for Martinelli) made the most of a fake on Diaz and a a nutmeg on Elliott, then scored between Alisson's legs with a slight deflection by VVD.

Scores for the week:

Ray from Norfolk 13 (2)
Seidman 9 (1)
skinnejay 7 (1)
ClevelandJames 6 (1)
Geaux_HR 6 (1)
Purple & Proud 5 (1)
billvacation 5 (0)
ben from portsmouth 4 (0)
Sonny from Suffolk 4 (0)
hansdampf: no predictions were posted

Stars of the week: Ray from Norfolk is in first on 13 points (and two correct IKTS predictions) with Seidman in second on 9 points (and one correct IKTS prediction) while skinnejay is in third on 7 points (and one correct IKTS prediction) but ClevelandJames and Geaux_HR are just one point outside the podium.

Clever pick of the week: There were seven exact IKTS predictions for the week:
Arsenal versus Liverpool (Ray from Norfolk)
Burnley versus Fulham (Geaux_HR)
Bournemouth versus Nottingham Forest (Seidman and skinnejay)
Brentford versus Manchester City (Ray from Norfolk, ClevelandJames, and Purple & Proud)

Crisis pick of the week: A collective crisis as none of the participants collected any points for the fixtures at Newcastle and Chelsea.

Standings after Week 23:

Ray from Norfolk 211 (23)
ben from portsmouth 202 (25)
skinnejay 187 (22)
Seidman 187 (19)
ClevelandJames 185 (19)
billvacation 179 (17)
Geaux_HR 175 (19)
hansdampf 168 (15)
Purple & Proud 160 (16)
Sonny from Suffolk 153 (17)

After Week 23, Ray from Norfolk leads ben from portsmouth by nine points.

Upcoming schedule: Saturday February 10, Sunday February 11, and Monday February 12:

Manchester City - Everton

Fulham - Bournemouth

Liverpool - Burnley

Luton - Sheffield United

Tottenham - Brighton

Wolverhampton - Brentford

Nottingham Forest - Newcastle

West Ham - Arsenal

Aston Villa - Manchester United

Crystal Palace - Chelsea