English Premier League Game Week 16 Preview

English Premier League - Football

Another week in football has passed us by yet we still have another round of mouth-watering matchups for us in Game Week 16. The biggest of the lot begins with Manchester City hosting Arsenal which sees 4th taking on 1st in what should be, on paper at least, a cracking game of football. Arsenal have been the most consistent in the league which sees them on top but it will be a big task to topple a Manchester City side that has won all 7 of their home games. Let’s just hope this spectacle sets up an exciting weekend of football. Beyond this game we also have Tottenham taking on Liverpool which will still largely be a battle of Suarez versus Tottenham’s defence given some key absentees from Liverpool’s line-up this weekend. Another game I’m looking forward to is Newcastle hosting Southampton. Newcastle has been great form over their last 5 or 6 games whilst Southampton have perhaps been the surprise packet despite some recent losses against top sides. But above all let’s just hope that we have some exciting contests, cracking goals, and that your team wins. 

Best Bets this week:

Chelsea half/full-time at $1.66 against Crystal Palace

Hull versus Stoke under 2.5 goals at $1.59

Great Value this week:

Newcastle to beat Southampton at $2.44

Everton half/full-time at $2.04 against Fulham

Betting odds from Betfair as at 13/12/13

Manchester City ($1.84) Vs Arsenal ($4.9), Draw ($3.9)

We begin with the game of the week with Manchester City hosting top placed Arsenal with both sides looking to assert themselves on the rest of the competition as we near the halfway mark of the season. Manchester City have been irresistible at home winning all 7 games scoring 29 in the process and only conceding twice. Whilst their home form hasn’t been reflected in their away form, they did have a fantastic away win against Champions League winners Bayern Munich when they came from behind 2-0 down to win 3-2. That could well be a season defining performance for them and could give them a big push towards a title shot. Whilst Arsenal boast the best away record in the league having only lost once away, they have only played one top side away where they lost 1-0 to Manchester United despite their own form being down. The only sides they’ve beaten away have been Fulham, Sunderland, Crystal Palace, Swansea, and Cardiff – Hardly stiff competition in comparison to Manchester City. Whilst Arsenal are certainly in with a shot, I feel that Manchester City’s win over Bayern during the week and their incredible home form gives them the edge here.

Predicted result: Manchester City 2-1

Best bet: Over 2.5 goals at $1.67

Best Bet Confidence: 75%

Cardiff ($2.7) Vs West Brom ($2.92), Draw ($3.4)

A tough game here for both sides with Cardiff generally strong at home as they feed off their home crowd whilst West Brom are been no means easily beaten given they have beaten Man Utd, and drawn with Arsenal and Chelsea. The Baggies will however need to turn around their recent form to notch a win here coming off 3 straight losses with Cardiff looking to get their first win since 3rd November when they beat rivals Swansea at home. Since then they’ve lost 3 of 5 and only scored twice. With neither side having any recent major injury concerns and neither in good form I can only suspect that this will end in a hard fought draw. It will be tougher for West Brom being away with Cardiff sniffing a home win so a double chance option to Cardiff looks to be a safe bet.

Predicted result: Draw 1-1

Best bet: Double chance Cardiff at $1.50

Best Bet Confidence: 80%

Chelsea ($1.19) Vs Crystal Palace ($22), Draw ($8.2)

Despite winning 3 of their last 4, this seems very much mission impossible for Crystal Palace here as they prepare to take on Chelsea away. Interestingly I suppose though is that Chelsea have also won 3 of their last 4 but their last two have been a little sketchy losing to Stoke away and just beating Sunderland away 4-3. That’s probably as much hope I can give Palace in this one because at home Chelsea have been almost faultless having won 6 and drawn 1 from their 7 thus far. In addition to this they’ve also scored almost 2.5 goals per game at home compared to 1.62 away which shows they certainly like to attack at home. Whilst it’s worth noting though that Palace have only conceded once in their past 5 games, this will be by far the best attack they have faced in their past 5. There’s been a good feel about Palace lately with their 3 wins in the past 4 certainly reviving their season. I can’t see their revival extending into this week though with Chelsea to breakdown this spirited defence to notch another home win.

Predicted result: Chelsea 3-0

Best bet: Chelsea half/full-time at $1.66

Best Bet Confidence: 85%

Everton ($1.39) Vs Fulham ($10.5), Draw ($5.2)

Perhaps another lopsided game here with Fulham taking on Everton away. Everton haven’t lost since 5th of October when they went down 3-1 against Manchester City away which was also their only loss of the season. The rest of the season has been a somewhat solid and typical Everton of last year. Their opponents this weekend will have been boosted by their win last weekend after a 6 game losing streak as well as for Berbatov himself getting on the scoresheet having not scored since 21st October. The past few games I have certainly seen a change under their new manager with a more positive style of play, however this will certainly be a big ask for them to back up last weekend’s performance over Aston Villa especially away. I’m expecting a bit of fight from Fulham after their win last week however I can’t see anything but an Everton win here even more so given they’ve won their last 5 against Fulham at home. Whilst Baines might still be out with injury, Oviedo has certainly shown plenty in his place scoring 2 in his last 3 games.

Predicted result: Everton 2-0

Best bet: Everton half/full-time at $2.04

Best Bet Confidence: 75%

Newcastle ($2.44) Vs Southampton ($3.2), Draw ($3.45)

Newcastle host Southampton this weekend in what should be a close encounter. Newcastle have been in some incredible form winning 5 of their last 6 including victories over Man Utd, Tottenham, and Chelsea. They’ve also only lost once at home so they are well placed for this one. Southampton for the vast majority of this season have been very good but their last 4 games have not yielded positive results albeit against tough competition in Arsenal, Chelsea, and Manchester City. Their draw at home with Man City last weekend was a good result given they lost the 3 prior to that. They’ll be looking to recapture some of their form from earlier in the season however their growing injury list, recent form, and Newcastle being in great form isn’t exactly conducive to them getting such a positive result here. Value on Newcastle here for a good home win.

Predicted result: Newcastle 2-1

Best bet: Best Value is Newcastle for the win at $2.44 with an over 2.5 goals bet at $2 another good option given Southampton have conceded 9 of their 14 goals in their last 4 games.

Best Bet Confidence: 80%

West Ham ($2.04) Vs Sunderland ($4.2), Draw ($3.55)

Neither West Ham nor Sunderland have been in good form this season and both are coming off 2 losses heading into this one. Whilst I’d like to think that under normal circumstances West Ham would notch a win here over bottom tabled Sunderland, I’m inclined to think this is going to be a draw. Firstly West Ham will be without Kevin Nolan after his red card against Liverpool to add to their growing injury list with the likes of Downing, Reid, Carroll, and Vaz Te out. Secondly Sunderland have shown some good signs in their last two games against top opposition in Chelsea and Tottenham. Tottenham needed some cracking goals to come from behind for a win whilst Chelsea managed the win thanks largely to a Sunderland own goal. So for me they are heading in the right direction and this could be a great opportunity to snatch an away point this weekend in what would be a big morale boost.

Predicted result: Draw 1-1

Best bet: Both teams to score at $1.89

Best Bet Confidence: 70%

Hull ($2.36) Vs Stoke ($3.6), Draw ($3.3)

An interesting matchup here with Hull taking on Stoke this weekend. Hull had a good away draw at Swansea last weekend to consolidate their spot in 12th. Stoke meanwhile had a big 3-2 win over Chelsea at home to push them within a point of Hull in 13th. Both sides here have been really good at home but have struggled away and for Stoke this weekend they’ll be looking to reverse their record of 5 losses in their 7 away games thus far. I think it’s important to note though that their away games have been tough. In particular against Liverpool, Arsenal, Manchester United, Swansea, and Everton. Whilst this weekend will be by no means any easier it could be a good opportunity to get a positive result. Hull though have only lost once at home this season which was to Crystal Palace and have only conceded 3 times in the process. I feel Stoke’s big win last week will give them enough momentum to get a draw away this week to slightly improve their away record. An under 2.5 goal bet looks a safe one as 6 of Hull’s 7 home games have been under 2.5 goals and neither side is overly proficient in front of goal.

Predicted result: Draw 1-1

Best bet: Under 2.5 goals at $1.59

Best Bet Confidence: 85%

Aston Villa ($5.4) Vs Manchester United ($1.79), Draw ($3.85)

Could it get much worse for Manchester United this weekend then to lose to Aston Villa and make it 2 losses in a row for the second time this season? The aftermath will certainly be interesting regardless. Manchester United are certainly in desperate need of a win. They haven’t won in their past 4 games and sit 7 points off 4th place as we near the halfway mark of the season. One positive they do have for this week though will be the return of Rooney from suspension which will give them a much needed boost in the absence of RVP due to injury. Villa meanwhile have their own problems with a growing injury list and Benteke a little out of touch in front of goal. Whilst it could be a good opportunity for them to claim a big scalp again this weekend, their home form has been far from solid with 2 wins, a draw, and 4 losses. I’m expecting a close game here with Manchester United to end up with the 3 points by the final whistle.

Predicted result: Manchester United 2-1

Best bet: Manchester United to win at $1.79

Best Bet Confidence: 80%

Norwich ($2.88) Vs Swansea ($2.72), Draw ($3.4)

Norwich hosts Swansea this weekend with Norwich hoping to add to their 4 wins from their last 6 encounters with Swansea. Norwich had a great result last weekend to upset West Brom away which gave them only their second away win of the season. Swansea meanwhile could only manage a draw at home with Hull having been down by 1 goal at half time. Norwich have had some better performances come in their last 5 games where they’ve notched up 3 wins and their last 3 home games they’ve been undefeated so they’ve certainly improved in comparison to earlier in the season. Gary Hooper has been in good form scoring in each of Norwich’s last 3 wins so he’ll be looking for another goal this weekend to really cement his place in the side in the absence of Van Wolfswinkel. Inconsistency however has been the main player with both these sides and it’s difficult to see either side getting a clear win this weekend. Look for Swansea to get their first away draw of the season with goals sure to be on the cards as the last 5 games between these two in all competitions have all been over 2.5 goals.

Predicted result: Draw 2-2

Best bet: Over 2.5 goals at $2.08 looks good value

Best Bet Confidence: 75%

Tottenham ($2.52) Vs Liverpool ($3.05), Draw ($3.5)

There’s no better way to end a weekend of football with a big game between Tottenham and Liverpool. There’s no doubt Liverpool have been the better performer between these two thus far this season, however Tottenham have certainly been on the improve over the past few games. A draw with Manchester United and wins over Fulham and Sunderland have pushed them back to within 2 points of the top 4. A win here would also put them at 4 points better off compared to the same time last season after 16 games so for all the doom and gloom written about Spurs after their 6-0 loss to Manchester City, things are not as bad as they seem. In another positive, Soldado would have gained a fair bit of confidence with a hat trick during their Europa League fixture with Anzhi so he could be in contention for a starting place this weekend. Their opponents this weekend in the form of Liverpool have been on a bit of a rampage in their past 2 games scoring 9 goals with Suarez capturing 6 of them. Liverpool’s issues though have largely been in away games as they’ve only managed 2 away wins from their 7 so far and this will be compounded with some injuries with Gerrard and Sturridge to miss this one which will be a big blow. Add to this that Tottenham have won their past 6 home games against Liverpool and the signs are pointing to a close but hard fought Tottenham win at home. Suarez will be the hurdle and will no doubt still cause plenty of trouble in combination with Coutinho.

Predicted result: Tottenham 2-1

Best bet: Over 2.5 goals at $1.86

Best Bet Confidence: 75%

 

Author

mm

Goal

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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