Premier League festive predictions: Lawro v singer-songwriter and Sheffield Wednesday fan Richard Hawley

Lawro's predictions

The Premier League's top two meet on 26 December with Leicester looking to cut the gap on runaway leaders Liverpool.

While the Reds keep on winning - lifting the Club World Cup last week - the Foxes have fallen out of form, and have now gone three games without a win in normal play.

"Leicester had been on such a good run before then, and I just wonder if this is their little iffy period," said BBC football expert Mark Lawrenson.

"Plus I just think Liverpool are very difficult to stop at the moment. The word I would use to describe them is 'clinical', and they showed that again in Qatar."

Lawro is making predictions for all 380 top-flight matches this season, against a variety of guests.

For the games on 26 and 27 December, he is up against singer-songwriter and Sheffield Wednesday fan Richard Hawley, whose latest album 'Further' is out now.

Richard Hawley
Wednesday finished in the top seven three times in the first five seasons of the Premier League between 1992 and 1997. "Those days with Chris Waddle and David Hirst in the team are like a distant memory," says Hawley. "But occasionally I have the great pleasure of going for a pint with David. He is somebody who is a pal, and a hero."

Hawley, a former guitarist in Pulp and Longpigs, hails from the Steel City and is enjoying seeing the Owls flying up the Championship as they look to return to the top flight for the first time since 2000.

Wednesday have won four and drawn one of their past five matches to climb to third place and Hawley told BBC Sport: "If you are a football fan you get used to the the undulations of your team - but it is just so good to see us playing so well and for me the team we have got now is all there.

"We have got a brilliant goalie, decent defence, a proper midfield who play football not hoofball, and strikers who put chances away.

"I am a bit worried we have got Stoke, who are second-bottom, next though. It is a Sheffield Wednesday thing that we always seem to raise our game against equivalent or better teams - but then drop points against the lesser sides."

Snapshot showing top of the Championship: 1st West Brom, 2nd Leeds, 3rd Sheff Wed, 4th Fulham, 5th Preston & 6th Brentford
Wednesday's best league finish since they were relegated from the Premier League in 2000 was the fourth place they managed in the Championship in 2017. They are currently third, eight points off the automatic promotion places

While Wednesday are bidding to return to the Premier League, their neighbours and rivals Sheffield United have turned into the season's surprise package following their promotion, and sit fifth in the table.

But Hawley, who went to watch his first Wednesday match at the age of five with his granddad, does not mind seeing the Blades back in the big time - far from it in fact.

"I am actually quite supportive, and not in a grudgingly way either," he explained. "I like to see anything to do with Sheffield doing well.

"Obviously I want to see Wednesday get some success but I just love the city I live in. I make that fairly obvious because I make a massive point of it in pretty much everything I do.

"A couple of years ago my management were talking about me doing a concert at Hillsborough and it kind of got so far along the road.

"But then in the end I said 'actually I don't want to do it' and they were asking me 'why not? It will be an amazing event'.

"And I said 'because a lot of my fans are Blades'. It would have been a bit of a kick in the face for them if I put on a gig at Wednesday's ground.

Richard Hawley
Hawley's favourite current Owls player is Barry Bannan, and he explained: "We all love Atdhe Nuhiu - who we know as 'Big Dave' here - because we all love a trier. But Barry has been my favourite footballer for many, many years. He is one of those players who when he is on the pitch he seems to be involved in everything, He is like a really pivotal player in the team and I really enjoy watching him.

"I've got loads of mates who are Blades too and the banter is worth it, basically.

"They had been in the wilderness for so long - a bit like us, or Manchester City were when they were in the third tier a few years ago - and it does test your mettle as a fan when you go through all that - it is bleak.

"I miss us not being in the same division, because you don't get a derby - and a Sheffield derby is such a day. There is the stigma if you lose, but absolute euphoria if you win.

"Let's just hope we can play them again next season, but I am genuinely pleased see them doing so well - just don't tell anyone that!'

Premier League predictions - week 19
ResultLawroRichard
THURSDAY 26 DEC
Tottenham v Brighton2-13-03-1
Aston Villa v Norwich1-02-02-0
Bournemouth v Arsenal1-11-21-1
Chelsea v Southampton0-22-04-0
Crystal Palace v West Ham2-11-20-2
Everton v Burnley1-02-00-2
Sheff Utd v Watford1-10-14-0
Man Utd v Newcastle4-12-08-0
Leicester v Liverpool0-40-22-1
FRIDAY 27 Dec
Wolves v Man City3-20-22-2

A correct result (picking a win, draw or defeat) is worth 10 points. The exact score earns 40 points.

LAWRO'S PREDICTIONS

All kick-offs 15:00 GMT unless stated.

THURSDAY, 26 DECEMBER

Tottenham v Brighton

Tottenham 2-1 Brighton

Lawro's prediction: 3-0

Richard's prediction: 3-1

Match report

Aston Villa v Norwich City

Aston Villa 1-0 Norwich City

Lawro's prediction: 2-0

Richard's prediction: 2-0.

Match report

Bournemouth v Arsenal

Bournemouth 1-1 Arsenal

Lawro's prediction: 1-2

Richard's prediction: 1-1

Match report

Chelsea v Southampton

Chelsea 0-2 Southampton

Lawro's prediction: 2-0

Richard's prediction: 4-0

Match report

Crystal Palace v West Ham

Crystal Palace 2-1 West Ham

Lawro's prediction: 1-2

Richard's prediction: 0-2

Match report

Everton v Burnley

Everton 1-0 Burnley

Lawro's prediction: 2-0

Richard's prediction: 0-2

Match report

Sheff Utd v Watford

Sheff Utd 1-1 Watford

Lawro's prediction: 0-1

Richard's prediction: 4-0

Match report

Man Utd v Newcastle

Man Utd 4-1 Newcastle

Lawro's prediction: 2-0

Richard's prediction: 8-0.

Match report

Leicester v Liverpool

Leicester 0-4 Liverpool

Lawro's prediction: 0-2

Richard's prediction: 2-1

Match report

FRIDAY, 27 DECEMBER

Wolves v Man City

Wolves 3-2 Man City

Lawro's prediction: 0-2

Richard's prediction: 2-2

Match report

Lawro was speaking to BBC Sport's Chris Bevan.

How did Lawro do last week?

Last weekend, Lawro got four correct results with no exact scores from nine Premier League matches, for a total of 40 points.

He was beaten by Serge from indie rock band Kasabian, who got three correct results, but with one exact score, for a total of 60 points.

Lawro's League Table graphic
+/- DENOTE POSITION DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LAWRO'S TABLE AND ACTUAL POSITION
TEAMPWDLPTS+/-
1Man City18170151+2
2Liverpool17152047-1
3Tottenham18134143+4
4Chelsea181233390
5Arsenal1895432+6
6Leicester1894531-4
7Man Utd1885529+1
8Burnley1873824+2
9Wolves1872923-3
10Aston Villa1864822+8
11Watford1863921+9
=12Bournemouth18621020+2
=12Everton1855820+3
=12West Ham1762920+4
15Newcastle18611119-6
16Brighton18521117-3
17Southampton184311150
=18Crystal Palace18351014-6
=18Sheff Utd18421114-13
20Norwich1807117-1

GUEST LEADERBOARD 2019-20

ScoreGuest leaderboard
160Gabriel Luna
140Arnold Schwarzenegger
100Adam Peaty
90Helen Housby, Jo Harten, Bobby Seagull, Geraint Thomas
80Andy Murray, Stephen Graham
79Lawro (average after 18 weeks)
70David Baddiel, Michael Johnson, Craig Mitch, Alex Scott
60Serge from Kasabian, Sonny Bill Williams, Stefan Ratchford
50Chelcee Grimes, Reece Parkinson, Sam Warburton
40Stephen Fry, Neil Jones, Tommy O'Dell
30Seth Rollins
Total scores after week 18
Lawro1,470
Guests1,310
Lawro v Guests
P18W13D1L4

Top Stories