With Reading firing their manager McDermott during the week, will it fire them up or will they crumble under the pressure? It seems a strange decision with only 10 games to play and the fact they face Manchester United this week and Arsenal the following match. Add to their fixtures still against Liverpool and Manchester City and it really seems like mission impossible and inevitable that they’ll drop. There’s a few tantalising matchups this weekend and although it doesn’t read like a highly anticipated fixture, the match between Villa and QPR looks to be an exciting one given both teams will be fighting to get the points to ensure their top flight survival.
It was another good weekend of best bets last week with 5/6 coming through adding to the previous week of 9/9. Let’s keep that form going!!
Best Value Bet: Manchester United half time/full time at $1.55 is good value
Safe Multi: Manchester United half time/full time at $1.55, QPR double chance at $1.64, Chelsea at $1.39 and Tottenham at $1.55 = $5.47
Value Multi: Liverpool at $1.86, Tottenham at $1.55, Wigan/Newcastle over 2.5 at $1.83, QPR Double chance at $1.64 and Chelsea half time/full time at $2.04 = $17.65
Everton ($3.65) Versus Manchester City ($2.16), Draw ($3.65)
- Everton Last 5:WDLLW
- Won 3 of their last 4 at home against City whilst their strong record also shows they have only lost twice to City in their last 10 meetings home and away.
- Manchester City Last 5:DDLWW
- Only average 1.42 goals For in away games this season compared to 2.21 at home.
Everton will be looking to put behind them their nightmare FA Cup performance against Wigan this week and will need to start the match positively here. Everton has a knack of playing well in important matches and have a great record against City. Tevez has been in exceptional form scoring a hat trick against Barnsley in the FA Cup. Everton will be desperate to secure the 3 points to jump Liverpool whilst this is really a crunch game for City in their slim chances of closing the gap to Manchester United. If they lose this one it’s going to be almost impossible but we feel they’ll be showing some fight to try and close the gap whilst keeping Spurs and Chelsea at bay.
Predicted result: City 2-1
Best Bet: Both teams to score at $1.69
Swansea ($3.7) Versus Arsenal ($2.28), Draw ($3.5)
- Swansea Last 5:LWLWL
- Undefeated in their last 5 at home
- Arsenal Last 5:DWWWL
- Only scored 5 goals in their last 5 away
Arsenal were knocked out midweek in the Champions League after a brave display secured them a 2-0 win against Bayern Munich away. Arsenal will now have to refocus on securing a top 4 spot for next season, but will have to navigate their way around Swansea who defeated them at home earlier in the season. A loss will leave Wenger furious and his team 8 points adrift from Chelsea if the blues win. Both Swansea and Arsenal are high possession teams with high passing success rates. Swansea averages more 58.5% possession at home whilst Arsenal average more possession away from home with over 59.3% so it will be a tight battle in midfield with perhaps the goals to come on the counter. Should be a very tight game and the draw looks likely here.
Predicted result: Draw 1-1
Best Bet: Value here is Under 2.5 goals at $2.28
Aston Villa ($2.3) Versus QPR ($3.4), Draw ($3.5)
- Aston Villa Last 5:DWLLW
- Averaging 44.3% possession this season, ranked 16th in the league.
- QPR Last 5:DLLWW
- One of 4 teams to not score a penalty this season.
Villa pulled off a major victory last week beating Reading away to boost their chances of survival. This is another massive game for both sides and if Villa are any chance they’ll need Benteke, Weimann and Agbonlahor to step up once again and perform. QPR had an impressive win over the Sunderland to keep in touch with safety and a win here gives them a huge chance of staying up. Andros Townsend on loan from Tottenham and striker Remy made the difference last week and a lot rides on these two to ensure their survival. A loss here will surely dent QPRs hopes of staying up but they look like a team who are developing some fighting spirit and under the guidance of Redknapp. This is sure to be one of the matches of the week with QPR sneaking through in a thriller.
Predicted result: QPR 2-1
Best Bet: QPR at $3.4 for the win is tempting but the safer option is QPR Double chance at $1.64
Southampton ($4.6) Versus Liverpool ($1.86), Draw ($4)
- Southampton Last 5:DWLLD
- Only 1 win from their last 8
- Liverpool Last 5:DLWWW
- Conceded the most own goals in the PL this season with 4.
The Saints drew blank in their last match against the Canaries and will have to sharpen up if they are to threaten Liverpool. Another hard one to call as travelling teams like Manchester City have seen what Southampton can do when they click. Rodgers will be spurring his side to continue their good scoring form and with the Reds having a less demanding run of matches to finish the season anything is possible for them. Suarez is the key player here once again and will be relied upon heavily along with Sturridge to get the job done. Coutinho has been another shining light for Liverpool in this second half of the season and has the creativity they have been missing. Tough for Southampton here with a Liverpool side that is on the charge with 3 wins on the trot.
Predicted result: Liverpool 2-1
Best Bet: Liverpool to win at $1.86
Stoke ($2.5) Versus West Brom ($3.25), Draw ($3.35)
- Stoke Last 5:LWLLL
- 48.1% of their goals have come from set pieces – Dangerous
- West Brom Last 5:LWWLW
- Lost 4 of their last 5 away
West Brom secured an important win last week against Swansea and Lukaku was a key figure in the victory with 4 goals in as many games. A win for Steve Clarke, and a loss for Everton will see them jump to 7th but a physical challenge is expected against the Potters. Stoke will be looking to redeem themselves as they would have felt hard done by against Newcastle losing in injury time. Stoke will again be missing key defender Huth as he sits on the sidelines for the 3rd time in his 3 game suspension. He could again be missed here with the likes of Lukaku in sparkling form with 4 goals in as many matches. This is sure to be a tight one with the game to break open more in the second half.
Predicted result: Draw 1-1
Best Bet: Double chance Stoke at $1.41
Manchester United ($1.17) Versus Reading ($20), Draw ($9.4)
- Manchester United Last 5:WWWWW
- Only conceded 2 goals in their last 5 home games in the PL
- Reading Last 5:WLLLL
- Have the lowest average possession % in away games with 38.6% – The next lowest is Stoke with 40.9% which expected given their defensive game style.
Can you really even make a case for Reading here? Having fired their manager who not long ago won the manager of the month award it seems as if they are in all sorts. Reading will be hoping they can show some fight after McDermott’s sacking as well as the realisation that there are not a lot of games left in the season and they need points desperately if they are to stay up. Travelling to Old Trafford is simply mission impossible though and with the odds at $21 for a Reading win that says it all really. Reading’s best chance here is to fight for a draw and park the bus but that’s even a longshot.
Predicted result: Manchester United 3-0
Best Bet: Half time/full time for Man United at $1.55
Sunderland ($2.1) Versus Norwich ($3.9), Draw ($3.5)
- Sunderland Last 5:LLLDL
- Haven’t won in their last 6 games
- Norwich Last 5:DDWLD
- 63.6% of their away goals have come from set pieces. They are also ranked equal 2nd overall for goals scored from set pieces with 13.
Sunderland are on a bit of a horror run with no wins in their last 6 and are a small chance of relegation trouble if this form continues. Norwich is in slightly better form picking up a win a few draws in their last 5 and look safe to stay up for another season in the top flight. This should be a tight match with Sunderland due for a win at home. It was a tough match for Sunderland against QPR last time out but Loftus road is always a tough place to travel to. Look for Sunderland to bounce back here at home with the likes of Sessegnon and Fletcher playing a key part.
Predicted result: Sunderland 2-1
Best Bet: Both teams to score at $1.83
Tottenham ($1.55) Versus Fulham ($6.8), Draw ($4.5)
- Tottenham Last 5:WWWWL
- Averaging 18.3 shots on goal per game ranked 2nd in the league of which 6.3 are on target which ranks 1st in the league
- Fulham Last 5:WLDWD
- Have not won at White Hart Lane in their last 5 attempts
Spurs are coming off a tough loss to Liverpool in a match that could have gone either way. On a positive note, Bale will be fresh for this one as he is suspended from playing in their second leg Europa League tie with Inter Milan. Fulham have struggled to score in their recent away games with only 4 goals For and may find it hard to score here against a Spurs side that has been solid at the back at home. Hard to go past Tottenham here at home against a Fulham side struggling away from home.
Predicted result: Tottenham 2-0
Best Bet: Tottenham to win at $1.55
Chelsea ($1.39) Versus West Ham ($9.8), Draw ($5.2)
- Chelsea Last 5:DLWLW
- Undefeated to West Ham at home in their last 4
- West Ham Last 5:LWLLW
- Conceded on average 2.6 goals per game in their last 5 away
Chelsea did well to claw their way back for a draw against Manchester United in their FA Cup tie after being down 2-0. That should give them a boost when they host West Ham this weekend with a win a must if they are to keep their top 4 chances alive with Arsenal only 5 points away in 5th spot. The Hammers have been a bit leaky in their last 5 away and will have a big task stopping Chelsea’s attackers on their home turf. Chelsea has not lost to the hammers in their last 4 at Stamford Bridge and West Ham could struggle to score here as Chelsea has only conceded 12 goals at home all season in the PL.
Predicted result: Chelsea 2-0
Best Bet: Chelsea to win at $1.39 whilst there’s value in half time/full time for Chelsea at $2.04
Wigan ($2.44) Versus Newcastle ($3.25), Draw ($3.5)
- Wigan Last 5:DDLWL
- Last 6 matches have all been over 2.5 goals.
- Newcastle Last 5:WLWLW
- 5 of their last 6 matches have all been over 2.5 goals.
Wigan will be looking to bounce back from their 4-0 thumping at the hands of Liverpool and will face some strong competition from Newcastle this weekend. Working against Newcastle’s is their poor away form with 1 away win all season and their last 5 away has seen only 1 win, 1 draw and 3 losses. Add to this their record at the DW stadium (4 losses from their last 5 there) and it looks all uphill for them. With Wigan’s home form no better than Newcastle’s away form (1 draw and 4 losses from their last 5) it’s hard to pick a clear winner here. One thing looks likely though, and that’s goals. Wigan will be desperate for the win to climb out of the relegation zone whilst Newcastle will want to consolidate their position near the middle of the table.
Predicted result: Draw 2-2
Best Bet: Over 2.5 goals at $1.83
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