Barclays Premier League Previews (big matches)
SATURDAY 27 FEBRUARYLEICESTER CITY V NORWICH CITY, KING POWER STADIUMLEICESTER (4-2-3-1)SCHMEICHEL, AMARTEY, HUTH, MORGAN, FUCHS, DRINKWATER, KANTE, MAHREZ ALBRIGHTON, VARDYNORWICH (4-2-3-1)MBOKANI, JARVIS, HOWSON, NAISMITH, MULUMBU, TETTEY, OLSSON, BASSONG, KLOSE, PINTO, RUDDDespite losing 2-1 at Arsenal in their last Barclays Premier League outing a fortnight ago, Leicester City remain top of the table with a two-point advantage over Tottenham Hotspur and the Gunners, with just 12 games remaining.With their two closest rivals not playing until Sunday and with fourth-placed Manchester City involved in the Capital One Cup final – against Liverpool at Wembley Stadium – the Foxes have the chance to extend their advantage to five points.Leicester have the joint most goals in the Premier League, with Manchester City (48) while visitors Norwich City have suffered nine defeats – and just two wins – out of 13 away games. Only Newcastle (10) have lost more on the road.When the teams met at Carrow Road in October, Leicester moved up to fourth in the Premier League with a narrow victory, taking the lead through Jamie Vardy’s penalty. Jeffrey Schlupp put the Foxes in control before Norwich’s Dieumerci Mbokani replied.Leicester have entertained Norwich only once before in the Premier League when, in April 1995, they won 1-0. But in three of their last four visits to Leicester the Canaries have won three. Overall, Leicester have won eight and drawn six of 21 home league clashes, with Norwich winning seven times.Vardy has 19 goals, including four in his last four games and has won six penalties for Leicester this season.REFEREE: NEIL SWARBRICK. MATCHES: 10. Y38, R2.SATURDAY 27 FEBRUARYSOUTHAMPTON V CHELSEA, ST MARY’S STADIUMSOUTHAMPTON (4-3-2-1)FORSTER, SOARES, FONTE, VAN DIJK, BERTRAND, ROMEU, CLASIE, WARD-PROWSE, TADIC, LONG, PELLECHELSEA (4-2-3-1)COSTA, PEDRO FABREGAS, WILLIAN, MATIC, MIKEL, AZPILICUETA, CAHILL, TERRY, IVANOVIC, COURTOISChelsea are unbeaten in their last 11 Barclays Premier League games. Their previous defeat was back in December, at Leicester City. But they meet a Southampton outfit unbeaten in their last six, winning five. And the Saints and goalkeeper Fraser Forster have gone 633 minutes without conceding a goal.That record has been bettered only 10 times previously in the Premier League and if he keeps another clean sheet extending his record to 723 minutes he will be fifth, with Manchester United’s Edwin van der Sar holding the record of 1,311, completed in February 2009.Southampton’s impressive run has taken them into the top six; their best ever finish in the Premier League was seventh last season while in 1985 they finished fifth in the old First Division.Chelsea have risen to 12th place in the Premier League and will hope to improve on just three away wins and just 12 goals from 12 games on the road.The Saints won 3-1 at Stamford Bridge in October, while both games last season ended in 1-1 draws.Chelsea have scored 10 goals in their last two domestic outings. Following the 5-1 win over Newcastle last time out in the Premier League, they won 5-1 against Manchester United in the Emirates FA Cup.REFEREE: MARTIN ATKINSON. MATCHES: 24. Y85, R1.SUNDAY, 28 FEBRUARYMANCHESTER UNITED V ARSENAL, OLD TRAFFORD.MANCHESTER UNITED (4-2-3-1)DE GEA, LOVESMALLING, BLINDBORTHWICK-JACKSON, CARRICK, SCHNEIDERLIN, LINGARD, MATA, MEMPHIS, MARTIALARSENAL (4-2-3-1)GIROUD, CAMPBELL, OZIL, WALCOTT, COQUELIN, RAMSEY, MONREAL, MERTESACKER, KOSCIELNY, BELLERIN, CECHOn Tuesday night, Arsenal suffered a setback in the Champions League when they lost 2-0 at home to a Lionel Messi-inspired Barcelona. But in the Barclays Premier League, they are just two points behind leaders Leicester City, level on points with second-placed Tottenham Hotspur.Manchester United are fifth, despite losing 2-1 at Sunderland in their last league outing. They made amends with a 3-0 win in the Emirates FA Cup, at League One Shrewsbury on Monday night.They return to Old Trafford where they have won just six of their 12 games in the league. However, United have conceded just five home goals all season, the fewest in the Premier League.Arsenal, though, have scored more league goals away than at home 23 compared to 18 and they have lost only three games on the road.When these teams met at the Emirates Stadium in October Arsenal stunned United with three goals in the opening 20 minutes. United had no answer to Arsenal’s opening burst as Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil scored twice in 74 seconds. Sanchez added a third from 18 yards as the Gunners beat United for just the second time in 14 league meetings.Their Premier League record at Old Trafford is poor. Last season’s 1-1 draw ended a run of five straight defeats, while the Gunners have won just three of their 23 visits, most recently in September 2006. United have won 15 and drawn five.REFEREE: CRAIG PAWSON. MATCHES: 19. Y61, R2.SUNDAY, 28 FEBRUARYTOTTENHAM HOTSPUR V SWANSEA CITY, WHITE HART LANETOTTENHAM (4-2-3-1)LLORIS, WALKER, ALDERWEIRELD, WIMMER, DAVIES, DIER, DEMBELE, SON ERIKSEN, CHADLI, KANESWANSEA (4-2-3-1)AYEW, ROUTLEDGE, SIGURDSSON, KI, BRITTON, CORK, TAYLOR WILLIAMS, FERNANDEZ, NAUGHTON, FABIANSKITottenham Hotspur moved to within two points of Premier League leaders Leicester as Christian Eriksen struck a late winner at fourth-placed Manchester City in their last game in the Barclays Premier League.Visiting striker Harry Kane scored from the spot in the second half after Raheem Sterling was penalised for handball. After Kelechi Iheanacho levelled, Christian Eriksen earned a fifth league win in a row.Tottenham have won five consecutive Premier League games for the first time since a run of six, in December 2011.If Leicester lose at home to Norwich on Saturday, Spurs can go top with a win over Swansea, who have won only two of their 12 away games this season. Their last was at Everton; since then they have taken just two points from a possible nine.When the teams met in October in Wales, Swansea came from behind twice to steal a 2-2 draw.Indeed, that extended Spurs’ unbeaten Premier League run against the Swans to nine games. Swansea last beat Spurs, at home, in October 1982 in the old First Division.Swansea have never won at Spurs in the league. They have lost on their last 14 visits and the last time they got a draw there was in the old Second Division in November 1930. Overall, in 17 visits the Welshmen have lost 15 and drawn just two. And in those 17 games, Tottenham have scored 49 goals and conceded just 14.REFEREE: MIKE JONES. MATCHES: 18. Y60, R1.