English Premier League Game Week 11

English Premier League - Football

Welcome to the week 11 preview of the English Premier League. Another weekend of big matchups this week to entertain us with the likes of Manchester United hosting Arsenal, and Tottenham hosting Newcastle. In particular I think it’s a bit of a danger game for Manchester United this weekend with Arsenal in some super form. With a trip away to Cardiff and then games against Tottenham and Everton, it’s a very tough patch that could derail their title chances completely if they don’t pick up points in these games. Another side that has concerns is Crystal Palace. It is certainly looking more doom and gloom for them given that they are still yet to replace Ian Holloway and I can only imagine the morale amongst the playing group. Whilst I’m sure that Keith Millen is doing as much as he can to get the team to perform, it’s no comparison to the lift a new manager can bring into the place. Let’s hope for their sake that they can get someone in soon to make this side as competitive as they can be for the remainder of the season.

Best Bets

Swansea vs Stoke – Under 2.5 goals at $1.73

Manchester United vs Arsenal – Over 2.5 goals at $1.84

Best Value

Manchester City half/full time double at $2.08 against Sunderland

Betting odds from Betfair as at 8/11/13

Aston Villa ($2.06) Vs Cardiff ($4.3), Draw ($3.5)

The first game to kick off the weekend sees Aston Villa take on Cardiff at home in what looks to be a pretty interesting game. Villa have no doubt struggled in recent weeks having not scored a goal in their past 4 matches. They have however faced stingy opposition in the likes of Hull, Tottenham, Everton, and West Ham whom all have not given up goals easily. Add to this the dip in form of Benteke after injury and it’s no great surprise to see this Villa side have struggled to score recently. Cardiff on the other hand had a much needed victory last week over rivals Swansea which will have given them a much needed boost after some indifferent results in previous weeks. Importantly, they’ve also done well to keep two clean sheets after their 4-1 smashing at the hands of Chelsea to boost their defensive confidence.

Villa do have a few injury concerns with Weimann and Luna likely to miss this one, though they should welcome Agbonlahor back up front to work off Benteke. I feel Villa will break their scoring duck this weekend despite Cardiff’s recent defensive form, however I can’t see a clear winner with a draw looking a likely option.

Predicted result: Draw 1-1
Best bet: Under 2.5 goals at $1.81
Best Bet Confidence: 70%

Chelsea ($1.31) Vs West Brom ($12), Draw ($6.2)

Undefeated at home this season in the Premier League with 5 wins, Chelsea host a West Brom side that notched their first away win of the season against Manchester United on 28th September. Apart from their 2-0 win over Crystal Palace last week, the Baggie’s have had a tough run of opposition against Arsenal at home, with Stoke and Liverpool away following that. Facing Chelsea this week will be another stern test for this side, and they’ll have to play at their absolute best if they are to get anything out of this game.

Chelsea were stunned last week by a fantastic performance from Newcastle where they succumbed to a 2-0 loss. They’ll want to and should bounce back from that defeat pretty quickly at home. Chelsea have a fantastic record over West Brom at home winning their last 7 in all competitions and it should be no different this week. West Brom’s growing injury list will not help their cause with Chelsea to run out comfortable winners. I’m suspecting a late consolation goal from this Baggie’s side though given that Chelsea have only 3 clean sheets from their 10 games this season having conceded in their last 2 home games.

Predicted result: Chelsea 3-1
Best bet: Over 2.5 goals at $1.66
Best Bet Confidence: 80%

Crystal Palace ($6.6) Vs Everton ($1.64), Draw ($4.1)

Crystal Palace are still yet to appoint a new manager which is somewhat alarming as they head into another tough opponent when they host Everton this week. It’s difficult to see where Crystal Palace are going to get their wins from because every side above them is tough opposition at this stage, but they need to show some fight. Everton have only suffered the one loss this season which came away to Manchester City and are coming off a well-earned draw against Tottenham at home last week whilst also keeping a clean sheet.

Despite a slight concern over Lukaku after a knock to his knee which knocked out Hugo Lloris last week, Everton will be too strong for Crystal Palace here. I expect Palace to put up a fight in the first half, but it seems inevitable that a goal will come from Everton with their superior defence and midfield taking control of the game. It could well be a similar result to when Arsenal visited Crystal Palace a few weeks back where they lost 2-0 with the game pretty tight at 0-0 at half time.

Predicted result: Everton 1-0
Best bet: Everton to win at $1.64
Best Bet Confidence: 85%

Liverpool ($1.27) Vs Fulham ($16), Draw ($6.4)

Having been soundly beaten last week against Arsenal, Liverpool will be looking to bounce back quickly against Fulham at home this week. Whilst a side in Arsenal are certainly capable of keeping some of the best strikers in the league quiet in Sturridge and Suarez, Fulham will have a far more difficult task in doing so. Fulham have so far conceded 15 goals this season, of which 5 have come in their past two games and with a visit to Anfield against a side that is looking to bounce back, it could be a tough day for them.

Liverpool soundly beat Fulham in the same fixture last season winning 4-0 and the signs are pointing to another similar result this week. Fulham were well beaten at home early last week against Manchester United where they were 3-0 down at half time. I think the likes of Sturridge and Suarez will have far better service this weekend with their midfield the superior outfit this week where they don’t have to face Ozil and co.

Predicted result: Liverpool 3-0
Best bet: Over 2.5 goals at $1.56
Best Bet Confidence: 80%

Southampton ($1.63) Vs Hull ($7.4), Draw ($3.9)

Southampton hosting Hull to me looks a tougher game than what the odds might suggest here. I’ve liked both these sides for the majority of the season in terms of the way they go about things. Hull have been one of those teams that have been able to trouble any opposition they face despite not getting some of the results they deserve. Undefeated at home, Southampton will be no easy task though and I suspect this game will be a tight one. Southampton has the best defensive record in the league having only conceded 4 goals of which only 1 has been conceded at home. With Hull by no means a prolific side, they will find it difficult to find the back of the net this week.

Southampton are hard to go past in this one despite facing a niggly side in Hull. Can’t see a wealth of goals given that Hull have only lost by more than 1 goal on two occasions this season. It should however be a tight Southampton win and at $1.63 it looks pretty good value with all things considered.

Predicted result: Southampton 1-0
Best bet: Southampton to win at $1.63, whilst under 2.5 goals looks good value at $1.72
Best Bet Confidence: 80%

Norwich ($2.66) Vs West Ham ($3.05), Draw ($3.35)

These two sides have certainly had their struggles this season as they face off this week. Norwich have not won since September whilst West Ham have not won since their stunning 3-0 win over Spurs early in October. Both sides have their challenges with West Ham struggling for goals without Andy Carroll, whilst Norwich’s new signings are struggling for form and still seem to need some more time to gel together. It was perhaps no more apparent than last week in their 7-0 thumping from Manchester City that Norwich have a lot of work to do. It was certainly not the Norwich side of last season and I have to wonder whether they brought in too many players too quickly that don’t have Premier League experience.

Both sides could do with a win here with Norwich in the relegation zone with West Ham not far above them 2 points ahead. Whilst both sides would no doubt want the 3 points here, a draw would also be a positive result for both sides here given that a loss would do more harm to their table standings as well as their confidence. I think both sides will go for it early which could produce a couple of goals, but I’m tipping this one for a draw in the end.

Predicted result: Draw 1-1
Best bet: Both teams to score at $1.89
Best Bet Confidence: 75%

Tottenham ($1.59) Vs Newcastle ($7), Draw ($4.3)

Tottenham host Newcastle this week in what should be a good battle with both sides boasting a wealth of attacking talent. Newcastle had a fantastic win at home over Chelsea last week whilst Tottenham were held to a 0-0 draw away at Everton. This is a big game for Tottenham to win as they face Manchester City and Manchester United in consecutive fixtures after the international break so a loss could heap more pressure on them at this stage of the season. A positive for Tottenham now will be that they have qualified for the knockout stages of the Europa league, so in the short term it’s one less competition that the players will have to worry about.

Newcastle have been a little up and down this season where they have produced some strong results but at the same time have had poor starts which have cost them. I have no doubt they’ll cause a threat to Tottenham this week, but given Tottenham’s strong defensive record having only conceded 5 goals (of which 3 came against West Ham) they’ll find it pretty tough to break down this defence. For Spurs to win though they’ll need to make sure they take their chances from open play. Whilst they have only scored 9 times this season with 3 of those being penalties, they have created numerous chances so it could just be a matter of time before they really kick into gear.

Predicted result: Tottenham 2-0
Best bet: Tottenham to win at $1.59
Best Bet Confidence: 75%

Sunderland ($9.8) Vs Manchester City ($1.41), Draw ($5.2)

Sunderland host a Manchester City side that demolished Norwich last week, and whilst I don’t see it being a similar score line it should be the same result for Manchester City this week. Sunderland though will be hoping to add to their streak of three 1-0 wins over Man City at home. The only issue is that Sunderland are struggling with 8 losses, 1 draw, and 1 win. Their win over Newcastle was a timely boost, however the 1-0 loss to a Hull side that are by no means walkovers would have been disappointing for all involved at Sunderland.

Whilst Manchester City haven’t scored at Sunderland in their past 3 attempts, their scoring form this season puts them in a commanding position heading into this one. Their only downfall could be a degree of complacency, but I don’t think they’ll get too far ahead themselves and I expect them to take the 3 points here.

Predicted result: Manchester City 2-0
Best bet: Manchester City half/full time double at $2.08
Best Bet Confidence: 85%

Manchester United ($2.38) Vs Arsenal ($3.3), Draw ($3.5)

The biggest game of the weekend comes with Manchester United hosting Arsenal. The Gunners are in red hot form this season with 25 from a possible 30 points so far which gives them a 5 point gap over their nearest rivals at the top of the table. The key to their success this season has been their midfield dominance in the likes of Ozil, Ramsey, Carzorla, and Wilshere. And to think they have Walcott nearing a return from injury – it reads well for the rest of the season if they can stay fit.

With Arsenal’s incredible run of form continuing during the week with a win away at Borussia Dortmund, I’m predicting a bit of an upset here with respect to the odds. I have no doubt Manchester United will provide a tough contest, I just feel they have lost their ability to close out games. I don’t think we can read too much into the ‘fortress’ that Old Trafford is at the moment either as their home form has been patchy at best with 2 wins, 2 draws, and 1 loss from their 5 home games. A big test for Arsenal, but one they should be able to pass if they maintain their form.

Predicted result: Arsenal 2-1
Best bet: Over 2.5 goals at $1.84
Best Bet Confidence: 85%

Swansea ($2.04) Vs Stoke ($4.5), Draw ($3.45)

The final match of the week takes place with Swansea hosting Stoke. Swansea only have the 1 win from their past 5 games and their loss last week to rivals Cardiff would have put a dent in their confidence. Their opponents in Stoke haven’t had it that easy either with 3 points from their last 7 games that could have well been 2 points if not for an incredible bit of luck from Begovic to score in the 1st minute last week against Southampton.

Stoke have not been the best on the road this season with 4 losses and 1 win and although Swansea has by no means been strong at home, they will be desperate to bounce back after losing to Cardiff last week. Stoke have also struggled to score all season with only the 4 goals scored in their away fixtures thus far whilst conceding 8 goals in their 5 away games. I can see Stoke trying to get away with a draw, however I feel Swansea will just have enough through the likes of Michu and Bony to get the win.

Predicted result: Swansea 1-0
Best bet: Under 2.5 goals at $1.73
Best Bet Confidence: 80%

Please Note:
All of the above are the opinions of the author and are not recommendations or advice. The author may not be taking every bet listed above. Bet at your own risk.
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As an Australian growing up AFL was always my no.1 sport especially given I was lucky enough to grow up a few blocks from Carlton’s home ground, Princes Park, where I was lucky enough to attend many games. That’s where my passion for sport began but it was until the early 2000’s when I discovered a real passion for football with the Socceroos 2002 World Cup qualifiers against Uruguay accelerating my football journey. From there I began to follow the Premier League and haven’t looked back since. These days I’m a massive Tottenham fan where I’ve enjoyed many sleepless nights religiously watching them without missing a game despite many roller coaster feelings. There’s just something magical and glamorous when you watch the EPL and knowing the Profits owners Drew and Euan through studies, I’m now lucky enough to be able to share my thoughts on each game each week of the season.

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