Premier League betting tips
West Ham vs. Chelsea
The Hammers succumbed to a combination of a contentious VAR decision and a last-minute Neal Maupey overhead wonder goal as they dropped two precious points in their quest for an incredible top four finish.
Thomas Tuchel made six changes to his Chelsea side as they battled to victory against a spirited Watford outfit on Wednesday.
The German head coach described his side’s performance “sloppy” and the fact they emerged with all three points as “lucky” – he will take another fortunate victory at the London Stadium Saturday lunchtime that’s for sure.
Verdict: Draw, Chelsea
Wolves vs. Liverpool
The crossbar Adama Traore smashed his thunderbolt against is possibly still reverberating but that was as good as it got for sixth placed Wolves who had to settle for back-to-back 0-0 draws.
For Liverpool meanwhile the goal machine continues to churn relentlessly, avenging last season’s Merseyside derby defeat with a 4-1 mauling of Everton – Jurgen Klopp’s side have now scored at least twice in each of their last 18 games in all competitions, the new longest record in history by an English top-flight side.
This may be a tougher assignment but I can’t see Bruno Lage finding a way to stop this Liverpool side who have set an EPL record of scoring 25 goals after their seven away games this season – three more points going back to Anfield.
Newcastle vs. Burnley
Eddie Howe’s game plan was ripped up after nine minutes when defender Ciaran Clarke was sent off in their relegation scrap with Norwich, but he would have taken heart from a battling performance although his side couldn’t quite hang on to the lead given to them after Callum Wilson fired home from the spot.
Sean Dyche praised his side’s defensive structure which saw them claim a first clean sheet on the road this season, although they go to the North East still in search of their first away win of the campaign.
This fixture ended goalless in December and I can see Burnley making it four consecutive away draws, extending Newcastle’s wait for a first win of the season in the process.
Verdict: Newcastle, Draw
Southampton vs. Brighton
Saints twice took the lead against Leicester in midweek and twice were pegged back, although they may be considered fortunate to have claimed a point in the end after a strong finish from the Foxes.
That superb Neal Maupay strike salvaged a late point for Brighton who due to injuries were down to 10 men at the time – although they are now without a win in nine EPL games they have drawn seven of those.
A team that can’t hold on to a lead versus a side that has a knack of snatching points – got to be a draw right?
Verdict: Southampton, Draw
Watford vs. Man City
The Hornets gave league leaders Chelsea one heck of a game on Wednesday and they will need more of the same with the Champions coming to Vicarage Road! Claudio Ranieri was proud of his players and rightly so, but they have still lost five of their seven EPL games under him, conceding 16 goals in total and have now slipped to fourth bottom.
Man City made it six wins on the spin in all competitions as they inflicted a first defeat for Steven Gerrard as Aston Villa manager in midweek.
The win over Villa was Pep Guardiola’s 150th in the EPL for City in just his 204th game in charge – this looks like being number 151 to me.
Verdict: Man City
Man United vs. Crystal Palace
Cristiano Ronaldo scored his 800th (and 801st) career goal to help his side to victory in an Old Trafford thriller on Thursday night. The worry for new interim manager Ralf Rangnick is at the other end where the Red Devils have conceded in 15 consecutive home games in all competitions.
It’s back-to-back league defeats for the Eagles as a VAR-awarded injury-time penalty saw them fall to a 1-0 loss at lowly Leeds United.
Not only has Patrick Vieira seen his side concede more set piece goals than any other side in the top flight, he has also seen them concede three second half injury time strikes costing five points in total – we may see a return of Fergie time for Ralf here as he gets his reign off to a winning start.
Verdict: Man United, Draw
Tottenham vs. Norwich
Spurs went sixth, just two points off the UCL places with a game in hand, after making it back-to-back EPL wins under Antonio Conte and have now won all three of their home matches with him as manager in all competitions.
Norwich failed to make their numerical advantage count over rock bottom Newcastle despite having an extra man for over 80 minutes – a performance Dean Smith labelled the worst since his arrival three games ago – although he remains unbeaten over that period thanks largely to a stunning equalising Teemu Pukki volley at St. James’.
Tottenham have won 28 of their last 32 EPL home games against promoted sides, I expect them to extend that run with another win here.
Leeds vs. Brentford
A glaring Christian Benteke miss and a VAR awarded injury time penalty coolly converted by Raphinha gave lowly Leeds a vital three points as they moved five clear of the drop zone.
Despite having more of the ball against Spurs, the Bees slipped to their fifth defeat in their last seven EPL games with Thomas Frank admitting they were beaten by the better team on the day.
A tough one to call – which normally means I sit on the fence – draw!
Verdict: Leeds, Draw
Aston Villa vs. Leicester
A first defeat in charge of Villa for Steven Gerrard, but no disgrace in a one goal loss to the Champions, with the new manager happy with his team’s second half performance, feeling they lacked a little belief early on.
The Foxes came from behind twice to take a point from their midweek visit to the South Coast – although they could have snatched all three late on and Brendan Rodgers considered it two points dropped.
With James Maddison back firing this could be a cracking match but I fancy Villa to get back to winning ways for a manager with a fantastic home record.
Verdict: Aston Villa, Draw
Everton vs. Arsenal
Oh dear Rafa! A derby day hammering at the hands of his former employers has stretched his current side’s run without a league win to eight games as he chose to comment on how much money has been spent at Anfield as, after a promising start, his side now sit precariously in 14th – just five points clear of the relegation places.
Arsenal scored one of the most controversial goals of the season so far in taking the lead at Old Trafford but then appeared to drop off and hand the initiative to the home side who took advantage in winning by the odd goal in five.
Back to winning ways for the Gunners this Monday night, to pile more pressure on Rafa Benitez.
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