Cantona-less Reds are ripe for plucking

PUBLISHED : Friday, 21 February, 1997, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 21 February, 1997, 12:00am

THIS week's hopeful tipster is 'Happy Hammer' Nigel Harris, who, as his nickname suggests, is an ardent West Ham fan.

Nigel, who runs a communications business in the territory, is chasing Instant-Dict marksman Tim Bredbury's tally of 13 points.

One point is awarded for a correct result (home win, draw or away win) and three points are given for an exact scoreline.

Here is how Nigel sees the weekend matches turning out.

Chelsea 2 Man United 1 The 'Match of the Day' in England with Chelsea capable of doing the double over United with Gianfranco Zola and former United stalwart Mark Hughes putting the Blues 2-0 up before United notch a late consolation.

Coventry 2 Everton 1 Coventry have the bit between their teeth and Everton, with one win in the last seven games, are hardly 'happy campers'.

Leicester 1 Derby 1 An East Midlands derby not for the faint-hearted, with both teams giving 110 per cent and defying the critics who labelled them 'one-season wonders' - me included! Liverpool 3 Blackburn 0 One home defeat for the Reds and one away win for Blackburn about sums up this fixture. Rovers' 3-0 victory at Ewood to be reversed. M'boro 1 Newcastle 3 A victory for the Geordies with a repeat of the earlier St James' Park scoreline. Ravanelli may get the consolation goal.

Nottm Forest 1 Villa 1 Forest not back to their winning ways yet but with Stuart Pearce at the helm and Villa's form patchy, a draw is on the cards.

Soton 1 Sheff Weds 1 A 1-1 draw at Hillsborough earlier this season tells a lot. Saints' home form is not too bad and Wednesday are a hard team to score against. Sunderland 1 Leeds 0 George Graham has stamped his mark on Elland Road but I think the Roker men have his measure and will take the points.

Arsenal 2 Wimbledon 0 Ian Wright and Paul Merson combine to net and put the Gunners' championship charge back on course. West Ham 1 Spurs 0 The Hammers have spent GBP7.3 million on badly-needed strikers. A full house will lift the roof of the Bobby Moore Stand as John Hartson nets.