After a round of midweek fixtures in the Premier League it’s back to weekend action, with the Manchester derby at the Etihad on Saturday evening taking centre stage.
Our football betting expert looks at all the Premier League odds for the midweek matches.
Crystal Palace to win at Watford 21/10.
Chelsea to beat Everton Evens.
Everton v Chelsea
Everton’s heavy defeat in the Merseyside derby to rivals Liverpool was the ending for Marco Silva, and the Toffees manager was relieved of his duties the next day. The Blues look extremely fragile and interim manager Duncan Ferguson will need to lift his sorry squad for the arrival of Chelsea for Saturday’s lunchtime kick-off.
Chelsea, meanwhile, got back to winning ways and it was no coincidence that it happened when Tammy Abraham returned to the side. He opened the scoring against Aston Villa on Wednesday and received praise from boss Frank Lampard for his overall performance. The west London outfit have won five from seven on the road this season, so they will fancy their chances at Goodison Park.
I can see Chelsea stamping their authority on this one and taking advantage of an Everton side lacking in confidence and leadership. Back Frank Lampard’s side at Evens.
Bournemouth v Liverpool
It’s been a tough month for Bournemouth. After their 1-0 win at home to Manchester United at the start of November, the Cherries went on a four-match losing streak which now sees them one place above the relegation zone. Eddie Howe needs a result this weekend, but they don’t come much harder than Liverpool.
The Reds are in the form of their life, currently on a 32-match unbeaten run in the Premier League and top of the table by eight points. They know that Leicester and Manchester City have tough fixtures elsewhere this weekend and that there’s they can increase their lead at the summit of the Premier League with a win at the Vitality Stadium.
I can’t see anything other than a Liverpool win this weekend. Given their recent form and results, I fancy over 3.5 goals at 13/10.
Tottenham v Burnley
Jose Mourinho isn’t used to losing in his opening five matches at any of his clubs, but on his return to Old Trafford he watched his side lose 2-1 to Manchester United. The Portuguese will want to put that result behind him with a win against Burnley, and with Dele Alli back to his best alongside Harry Kane, Spurs will be confident that can happen.
Burnley took a heavy beating midweek at the hands of Man City, but those types of games won’t define their season. Away to Spurs is a tough fixture for every side in the top-flight, so the Clarets will hope they can soak up pressure and provide a threat on the break and in set-pieces.
Spurs have looked dangerous going forward lately, but they have also leaked goals too. I fancy a Spurs win and combined with both teams to score at 37/20 is a solid choice.
Watford v Crystal Palace
Watford are without a manager, and perhaps more worryingly without a result in three games. They are rooted bottom of the table, seven points from safety, and need results to come thick and fast if they want to stand any chance of survival. Scoring goals has been their biggest issue – with nine in 15 games they have the lowest amount in the division.
Crystal Palace are seventh and seem to be flourishing under Roy Hodgson at the minute. Two wins from two against Burnley and Bournemouth will only bring confidence, and a win on the road at Watford could help them break into the top six again this season.
Given how much Watford need the points, I think they can get the share of the spoils here. A draw can be backed at 47/20.
Manchester City v Manchester United
It’s one of the fixtures everyone looks out for before the start of the season, and it’s here – the Manchester derby.
The last time Manchester United got a result against their noisy neighbours in the league came at the Etihad – a 3-2 win which prevented City from winning the title that day. City won both games last season, and they’d love to make it three from the last three for bragging rights and to keep up the pressure on Liverpool. The Citizens warmed up well with their 4-1 win at Burnley, while United got back to winning ways against Spurs courtesy of two goals from Marcus Rashford.
Aston Villa v Leicester
Leicester can’t go wrong right now, and their imperious form – a seven-match winning run which has put them second in the table – has resulted in a new contract for manager Brendan Rodgers to warn off the suitors. With Jamie Vardy in the form of his life, one of the meanest defences in the league, and an envious football style, when will they be stopped?
Aston Villa earned a draw at Old Trafford last weekend, but a narrow defeat to Chelsea means they are now only one point above the relegation zone. They could do with some breathing space, but it’ll be a tough task to stop the Foxes, even with home advantage.
A Leicester win and Vardy to score first is 21/5. That can’t be sneered at.
Newcastle v Southampton
Both sides come into this one off the back of a few good results. Newcastle followed up their respectable draw with Man City by beating Sheffield United on the road – perhaps even more impressively given the latter’s home form.
Southampton have followed up a draw at the Emirates with two wins from two, and they have striker Danny Ings bang in form – he has four in his last four.
It’s too hard to call this one, so I’m going for a draw and over 2.5 goals which can be backed at 23/2.
Norwich v Sheffield United
Norwich and Sheffield United both lost their midweek matches, but the pressure is on the Canaries to win at home. They are languishing in 19th, despite having had a cracking start to the season.
Chris Wilder’s men haven’t lost on the road this season, and have only lost once all season, so Norwich will need to be at their best. They have Teemu Pukki back scoring goals, but only Southampton have conceded more than them this season.
I can’t see Sheffield United losing this one and, if anything, I think they can bounce back from their loss against Newcastle by picking up three points on the road. Back the Blades at 27/20.
Brighton v Wolves
Graham Potter’s Brighton claimed a well-deserved victory at the Emirates against Arsenal midweek. They dominated the Gunners in possession, shots on goal and more importantly, in the scoreline.
Wolves won in midweek too with a routine 2-0 win at home to West Ham. They’ve only lost one on the road and deserve their place in the top six. A win against the Seagulls could have people talking about them breaking into the top four, if other results go their way.
This one could go either way, but I’m going to back Nuno Espirito Santo’s side due to their away form and league position. Wolves are a good price at 9/5.
West Ham v Arsenal
Neither of these sides had good results midweek, but the pressure is all on Arsenal who are on their worst run the league since 1977. Managerless and winless from seven Premier League, the Gunners need to give their fans something to shout about.
West Ham have been in indifferent form. A win against Chelsea was followed by a 2-0 loss at Wolves. That said, their tails will be up knowing they can get a result against Arsenal, and I think they can get one.
The Hammers are good value at 49/50. I’ll be backing that.