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Premier League predictions: Lawro vs University Challenge star Bobby Seagull


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Premier League predictions: Lawro vs University Challenge star Bobby Seagull

We have already seen eight Premier League matches on Tuesday and Wednesday with Liverpool winning the Merseyside derby against Everton, Manchester United ruining Jose Mourinho’s return to Old Trafford and Southampton beating Norwich to move out of the relegation zone.There are two more games to come on Thursday with Arsenal at home to Brighton and…

Premier League predictions: Lawro vs University Challenge star Bobby Seagull

Lawro's predictions

We have already seen eight Premier League matches on Tuesday and Wednesday with Liverpool winning the Merseyside derby against Everton, Manchester United ruining Jose Mourinho’s return to Old Trafford and Southampton beating Norwich to move out of the relegation zone.

There are two more games to come on Thursday with Arsenal at home to Brighton and Sheffield United entertaining Newcastle.

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

This week he is up against University Challenge star Bobby Seagull, who is also a maths teacher, TV presenter, author – and West Ham fan.

Bobby works with West Ham as an education and charity ambassador. He is a keen footballer too, and played against former Hammers striker Jermain Defoe at primary school level – “he scored five in the first half with me as a hapless defender and their teacher subbed him off at half-time as an act of mercy”

Seagull, who grew up in East Ham, is best known for his stint on University Challenge as captain of the Emmanuel College Cambridge team, who lost to Eric Monkman in the 2016-17 semi-final.

Since then he has teamed up with Monkman to present their ‘Genius Guide to Britain’, a road-trip series that was shown on BBC Two.

“My personal highlight was teaching Eric the ‘Paolo di Canio’ song, which is based on a melody from a Verdi Rigoletto opera aria, in William Gladstone’s old library,” Seagull told BBC Sport.

The pair have teamed up again for another BBC Two series, ‘Monkman and Seagull’s Genius Adventures’, which will be shown soon.

Seagull and Monkman will delve into Britain’s history as part of their new TV series. He has a piece of West Ham’s past in his back garden too, after rescuing some of the old turf from Upton Park that had been left outside the ground

Seagull’s passion for maths is obvious, but so is his affection for the Hammers. He had a season ticket at Upton Park in 2002-03 and his family share two at the London Stadium now.

“I’m a part-time school maths teacher and doing a Doctorate in Maths Education at Cambridge,” he explained. “I’m also an author of ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Numbers’. The book shows how maths is everywhere in life – from the gym, to the kitchen and even my search for love!

“However the word ‘football’ appears 65 times in my book and ‘West Ham’ appears 28 times – this perhaps shows my real interests!

“I now am passionate about using football as way of engaging learners about maths. Just last week, I did the keynote talk at the Premier League Teaching & Learning conference for Premier League academy education managers and coaches.

“I volunteer with the West Ham United Foundation as a charity ambassador for the club, going out to visit primary schools promoting maths in football.

“Even when teaching stats, I sometimes get my students to analytically compare Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, so kids focus on statistics rather than just who is the loudest arguer!”

Premier League predictions – week 15
Result Lawro Bobby
TUESDAY
Crystal Palace v Bournemouth 1-0 1-1 2-1
Burnley v Man City 1-4 0-2 1-2
WEDNESDAY
Chelsea v Aston Villa 2-1 2-0 2-1
Leicester v Watford 2-0 2-0 2-1
Man Utd v Tottenham 2-1 0-2 1-1
Southampton v Norwich 2-1 1-1 1-1
Wolves v West Ham 2-0 2-0 2-1
Liverpool v Everton 5-2 2-0 2-1
THURSDAY
Sheff Utd v Newcastle x-x 2-1 2-1
Arsenal v Brighton x-x 2-0 2-1

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 19:30 GMT unless stated.

TUESDAY

Crystal Palace 1-0 Bournemouth

Match report

Lawro’s prediction: 1-1

Bobby’s prediction: 2-1

Bobby has analysed all the Premier League results so far in 2019-20 and used them as the basis of his predictions.

He explained: “The most common draw result was 1-1 (13.6% of all matches this season), while the most common home win is 2-1 (10%) and the most common away win is 1-2 (7.9%).

“So rather than trying to be individually smart about matches, once I’ve established a result of home win, draw or away win, I’ve gone for the average result frequency. I hope that this tactic will work overall.”

Burnley 1-4 Man City

Match report

Lawro’s prediction: 0-2

Bobby’s prediction: 1-2

WEDNESDAY

Chelsea 2-1 Aston Villa

Lawro’s prediction: 2-0

Bobby’s prediction: 2-1

Leicester 2-0 Watford

Lawro’s prediction: 2-0

Bobby’s prediction: 2-1

Man Utd 2-1 Tottenham

Lawro’s prediction: 0-2

Bobby’s prediction: 1-1

Southampton 2-1 Norwich

Lawro’s prediction: 1-1

Bobby’s prediction: 1-1

Wolves 2-0 West Ham

Lawro’s prediction: 2-0

Bobby’s prediction: 2-1

Liverpool 5-2 Everton

Lawro’s prediction: 2-0

Bobby’s prediction: 2-1

THURSDAY

Sheff Utd v Newcastle

Sheffield United keep on picking up points and I am very aware I have not tipped them enough to win (in the league table below, which is based on Lawro’s predictions) this season.

I keep thinking they will run out of steam but that has not happened, and they have already shown that they are far better than I thought they were.

I thought they would stay up but I did not expect them to be as high as they are, and they just look so comfortable at this level.

It is going to be interesting what Newcastle try to do against them, and how much energy they have got left, because they worked so hard in their draw against Manchester City on Saturday.

Lawro’s prediction: 2-1

Bobby’s prediction: 2-1

Arsenal v Brighton

Brighton always carried a threat at Anfield when they lost to Liverpool on Saturday, and always tried to play good football.

But the Seagulls will have been disappointed to concede two goals to set-pieces, and that was not the first time that they have done all right, but still ended up empty-handed.

As for Arsenal? Well, Freddie Ljungberg is in charge now but nothing changes, does it? They are good going forward but still open at the back and it feels like any team can cause them problems.

If Thursday is a good night for Arsenal, they win. If it isn’t, they will drop points.

The only thing that might help the Gunners is that, having watched the Seagulls at the weekend, I am not really sure where their goals are going to come from.

Lawro’s prediction: 2-0

Bobby’s prediction: If I had gone off my analysis I would have put 1-1, but there are occasions like this one you have to slightly ignore overall stats because of exceptional circumstances that overrule the data.

In this case, it is Freddie Ljungberg’s first home game as interim manager and the crowd are going to want get behind him, and significantly so. I expect that support to roar the Arsenal players on. 2-1

Lawro was speaking to BBC Sport’s Chris Bevan.

How did Lawro do last week?

Last weekend, Lawro got five correct results, including one exact score for a total of 80 points.

He beat dual-code rugby star Sonny Bill Williams, who got three correct results, including one exact score, for a total of 60 points.

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+/- DENOTE POSITION DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LAWRO’S TABLE AND ACTUAL POSITION
TEAM P W D L PTS +/-
1 Man City 14 13 0 1 39 +2
2 Liverpool 14 12 2 0 38 -1
3 Chelsea 14 10 2 2 32 +1
4 Tottenham 14 9 4 1 31 +1
5 Arsenal 14 8 4 2 28 +3
6 Man Utd 14 7 5 2 26 +3
7 Leicester 14 7 3 4 24 -5
8 Burnley 14 6 3 5 21 +2
=9 Aston Villa 14 5 3 6 18 +6
=9 Everton 14 5 3 6 18 +8
=11 Watford 14 5 2 7 17 +9
=11 West Ham 14 5 2 7 17 +2
=13 Bournemouth 14 5 1 8 16 -1
=13 Wolves 14 5 1 8 16 -6
15 Newcastle 14 4 1 9 13 -1
=16 Brighton 14 3 2 9 11 0
=16 Southampton 14 3 2 9 11 +2
18 Crystal Palace 14 2 3 9 9 -7
19 Sheff Utd 14 2 1 11 7 -12
20 Norwich 14 0 4 10 4 -1

GUEST LEADERBOARD 2019-20

Score Guest leaderboard
160 Gabriel Luna
140 Arnold Schwarzenegger
100 Adam Peaty
90 Helen Housby, Jo Harten, Geraint Thomas
86 Lawro (average after 14 weeks)
80 Stephen Graham
70 Michael Johnson, Craig Mitch, Alex Scott
60 Sonny Bill Williams, Stefan Ratchford
50 Chelcee Grimes, Reece Parkinson, Sam Warburton
40 Stephen Fry, Neil Jones, Tommy O’Dell
30 Seth Rollins
Total scores after week 14
Lawro 1,200
Guests 1,010

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