sport news Premier League: Carrick's big Ronaldo decision plus Everton vs Liverpool among ...

sport news Premier League: Carrick's big Ronaldo decision plus Everton vs Liverpool among ...
sport news Premier League: Carrick's big Ronaldo decision plus Everton vs Liverpool among ...

After a busy weekend in the Premier League, we barely have time to catch our breath before another onslaught of games in the first midweek round of the season.

Spread over three nights, all 20 teams will be in action with all of the games screened live on Amazon Prime Video.

And there are certainly plenty of intriguing plot lines to look forward to, from the possibility of Ralf Rangnick's first game as Manchester United's interim coach, Rafa Benitez making his return to Anfield for the Merseyside derby and the season's first 'six-pointer' at the bottom.

Here's what to look out for as we embark on a packed midweek of games.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang settled Man United vs Arsenal at Old Trafford last season

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang settled Man United vs Arsenal at Old Trafford last season

Cristiano Ronaldo will hope to be match-winner this time - and will be furious if benched again

Cristiano Ronaldo will hope to be match-winner this time - and will be furious if benched again

ALL THE MIDWEEK PL FIXTURES 

TUESDAY

Newcastle United vs Norwich City (7.30pm)

Leeds United vs Crystal Palace (8.15pm)

WEDNESDAY

Southampton vs Leicester City (7.30pm)

Watford vs Chelsea (7.30pm)

West Ham United vs Brighton and Hove Albion (7.30pm)

Wolverhampton Wanderers vs Burnley (7.30pm)

Aston Villa vs Manchester City (8.15pm)

Everton vs Liverpool (8.15pm)

THURSDAY

Tottenham Hotspur vs Brentford (7.30pm)

Manchester United vs Arsenal (8.15pm)

All matches live on Amazon Prime Video

Amazon's Premier League coverage can be streamed via their website, mobile app or through televisions or games consoles equipped with Amazon Prime Video. You can sign up to a 30-day free trial of Amazon Prime here (subscription costs £7.99 a month usually). 

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Carrick keeps the wheel warm for Ralf (probably)

Assuming his work permit isn't approved in time, which now looks very much like being the case given the stricter Covid rules for travellers arriving in the UK that came into force in the early hours of Tuesday morning, Ralf Rangnick will have to wait a little longer to take charge of Manchester United.

How the table looks heading into the games

How the table looks heading into the games

Instead, Michael Carrick will continue to act as interim manager to the interim manger when United host Arsenal on Thursday. United remain hopeful Rangnick will take over in time for Palace’s visit on Sunday.

United fans will be desperate to see the cult German manager get across the finer points of his 'gegenpressing' philosophy to a team currently infamous for their lack of work off the ball, but he would have had precious little time on the training ground this week anyway. 

The supporters can instead hope that the side will build on the more positive displays - and results - under Carrick over the last few days, against Villarreal and Chelsea.

Mischievous observers might suggest that Rangnick is already in charge anyway. Carrick had to deny that Rangnick had any input on his team selection or tactics at Stamford Bridge on Sunday - United insist technical director Darren Fletcher was speaking to video analysts, not the new manager, by phone from the dugout. 

Nevertheless, all eyes will be on whether Cristiano Ronaldo, so controversially dropped for last Sunday's trip to Stamford Bridge, is recalled. Unsurprisingly, Ronaldo stormed off down the tunnel immediately after the full-time whistle. 

Arsenal, meanwhile, eased past Newcastle on Saturday to bounce back from a 4-0 defeat at Liverpool the weekend before and move level on points with fourth-placed West Ham, three clear of Wolves. United remain a lowly eighth despite their galaxy of expensive talent.

This fixture used to be pure box office but its importance has diminished in recent years. Nonetheless, the two sides appear pretty evenly matched at the moment so it should be exciting.

New United boss Ralf Rangnick is unlikely to be in the dug-out on Thursday night due to work permit and Covid red tape

That means Michael Carrick (right) will continue to be caretaker manager

New United boss Ralf Rangnick is unlikely to be in the dug-out on Thursday night due to work permit and Covid red tape, which means Michael Carrick (right) will continue as caretaker

Rafa's feeling the heat ahead of Liverpool reunion

It's hardly the ideal moment for Rafael Benitez to lead his Everton side into a Merseyside derby against his former club Liverpool.

The Toffees are winless in seven games and were booed off by their fans after an abject display in a 1-0 loss at Brentford on Sunday.

Liverpool, by contrast, are in sparkling form and racking up the goals for fun. Their attack is such a well-oiled machine you can really only see one outcome against an Everton side low on confidence.

And a heavy defeat to the team he managed between 2004 and 2010 will see Benitez's job hanging by a thread with the fans quickly turning against him.

A banner in the Everton end at Brentford said fans demand 'nothing but the best' - a reference to the club's Latin motto. Easier said than done against on-song local rivals.

Rafa Benitez is feeling the heat at Everton after seven winless games - now it's the derby

Rafa Benitez is feeling the heat at Everton after seven winless games - now it's the derby 

Liverpool looked in ominously impressive form again as they thrashed Southampton 4-0

Liverpool looked in ominously impressive form again as they thrashed Southampton 4-0

The season's first 'six-pointer'

Too early in the season to be chatting about relegation 'six-pointers'? Not in the case of Norwich and Newcastle as the bottom two prepare to meet on Tyneside on Tuesday night.

Newcastle may have unimaginable wealth behind them but they haven't won a game all season and new manager Eddie Howe has a to-do list longer than a four-year-old's letter to Santa.

If they lose to a Norwich side who have been galvanised since Dean Smith came in, they are in real danger of being cut adrift at the bottom.

Howe does his best work on the training ground but there

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