We have 9 games this weekend as the matchup between Chelsea and Southampton has been postponed due to Chelsea’s involvement in the World Club Cup. Some great games await and in particular we are looking forward to Norwich versus Wigan with Norwich on a hot streak and Wigan a side that can suddenly pop up for a win after a run of bad form. It’s also getting tight around the fight for 3rd and 4th spots – who will be in these positions after the new year? Take your pick from Chelsea, Tottenham, Liverpool, Everton, West Brom and Arsenal. Stoke and Swansea are not far off either.
Best Value: Norwich looks the best value to beat Wigan at $2.3
Liverpool ($1.39) Versus Aston Villa ($10), Draw ($5.3)
- Liverpool Last 5: WDLWW
- Suarez is back – 13 goals in all comps this season. Critical player.
- Have not lost to a bottom half side this season in 7 games
- Aston Villa Last 5:LDWDD
- Only scored 2 goals in the last 4 games
- 5 losses in 8 away games this season
Despite the stats, Aston Villa has been playing some good football in recent weeks and they’ve been getting the results to go with it with 3 draws and a win in their last 4. Liverpool were somewhat lucky against West Ham last weekend but playing at home and welcoming Suarez back they shouldn’t have too much trouble against Villa.
Predicted result: Liverpool 2-0
Betting Option: Liverpool to win @ $1.39
Manchester United ($1.22) Versus Sunderland ($18), Draw ($8)
- Manchester United Last 5:LWWWW
- Averaging 2.66 goals a game versus bottom half sides
- Last 8 games United has been involved in have seen an average of 3.87 goals scored.
- Sunderland Last 5:LDLLW
- Not won in the last 5 attempts at Old Trafford
- Conceding on average 1.87 goals against top half sides
It’s hard to see Villa winning here but we can see them scoring against United in a similar way to bottom half sides this season such as Reading and Southampton. The Van Persie show keeps on getting better and he should be the focal point once again. Expect goals in this one with United taking the 3 points.
Predicted result: United 3-1
Betting Option: Over 2.5 goals at $1.48.
Newcastle ($5.9) Versus Manchester City ($1.69), Draw ($4.1)
- Newcastle Last 5:LLLWL
- Demba Ba continues to shine – 10 goals this season
- Have not beaten City in their last 5 at home
- Manchester City Last 5:WDWDL
- Tevez is their leading scorer in Premier league games with 7
- Conceded only 4 goals to bottom half sides
Manchester City would be expected to win this one easily and they should, however they have been a little inconsistent in the past few weeks. Why Tevez is not starting over Balotelli is baffling as Balotelli has been poor in the past few games. If Tevez starts, expect City to win. If it’s Balotelli again we feel anything could happen.
Predicted result: Manchester City 2-1
Betting Option: none
Norwich ($2.3) Versus Wigan ($3.5), Draw ($3.55)
- Norwich Last 5:WDDWW
- Only 1 loss at home this season
- In 8 games against bottom half sides, they have only won once (5 draws and 2 losses)
- Wigan Last 5:LWLLD
- Only scored 4 goals in 7 away games this season whilst conceding 13!
- Lost 4 of their last 5 away games
Norwich has been in super form lately and they were strong against a Swansea side last week that has also been in great form. Hosting the inconsistent Wigan this week it’s hard to see Wigan troubling them especially when you consider they have struggled to score away from home whilst at the same time Norwich has been strong at home. We can see Wigan winning but there is also that point when Wigan tend to bounce back for a win after a poor run.
Predicted result: Norwich 2-1
Betting Option: Norwich to win at $2.3
QPR ($2.58) Versus Fulham ($3), Draw ($3.5)
- QPR Last 5:LLDDD
- Only scored 5 goals at home (league lowest)
- 4 points in their last 8 and Redknapp has delivered 3 of them – on the right track.
- Fulham Last 5:LLDLW
- Only 1 win away this season
- Conceding on average 2 goals in away matches
After a strong start under Redknapp and some very promising signs in the past 3 weeks QPR are deserved favourites. Despite better performances in the last 3 weeks the pressure is still building for that first win and they’ll have an in-form Berbatov to deal with this weekend who was fantastic against Newcastle. QPR should be able to get over the line this week in a tight contest.
Predicted result: QPR 2-1
Betting Option: none
Stoke ($3.25) Versus Everton ($2.48), Draw ($3.35)
- Stoke Last 5:DWWWD
- Unbeaten since 3rd Nov when they lost 1-0 to Norwich
- 7 clean sheets so far!
- Everton Last 5:LDDDW
- 2nd for Goals For in the first half this season (17)
- Drawn 4 of their last 5 away games (1 loss)
Everton certainly had a never die attitude against Spurs last week and for the most part were the better team. The last 10 games between these two has averaged 2 goals a game and with Stoke such a strong side defensively this season and Everton struggling in away games recently this should end up a 0-0 or 1-1 draw.
Predicted result: Draw 1-1
Betting Option: Under 2.5 goals at $1.68
Tottenham ($1.66) Versus Swansea ($6), Draw ($4.1)
- Tottenham Last 5:LWWWL
- Conceded the most goals in the last 15 mins (10)
- Conceded the equal least goals (with Stoke) in the first half (5)
- Swansea Last 5:WDWWL
- Michu keeps on scoring, up to 12 goals so far this season
- At the same point last season, Swansea was the worst away team in the league with 2 draws and 5 losses from 7 games (this season 3W, 1D, 3L in away games)
Swansea has been fantastic in recent weeks whilst Tottenham couldn’t hold on to the 3 points against Everton. Swansea is good enough to snatch a win on their day but at White Hart Lane and with the potential return of Bale, Spurs should be just too strong in a close game.
Predicted result: Tottenham 2-1
Betting Option: Tottenham to win at $1.66
West Brom ($2.02) Versus West Ham ($4.2), Draw ($3.6)
- West Brom Last 5:WWLLL
- Averaging 1.5 goals a game down from 1.77 per game before their last 3 losses. Strikers have gone missing
- Still a strong Home record (6 wins, 2 losses)
- West Ham Last 5:DLLWL
- Only 1 win from 8 games against top half sides this season
- Only averaging .71 goals per game in away games
West Brom has lost a little of its shine of late with a 3 game losing streak whilst the Hammers were a little unlucky against Liverpool after their stunning win against Chelsea. With West Ham a little lacking away from home when it comes to scoring and West Brom’s strong home record, we expect West Brom to bounce back for a win here.
Predicted result: West Brom 2-0
Betting Option: West Brom to win at $2.02
Reading ($5.5) Versus Arsenal ($1.71), Draw ($4.1)
- Reading Last 5:LLLLL
- Conceding on average 2.4 goals a game in their last 5
- Last 5 games have averaged 3.4 goals a game.
- Arsenal Last 5:WDDLW
- Only 1 win away in their last 5 away
- Conceded the least second half goals this season (6)
Arsenal should certainly have too much class for Reading though they have not been overly convincing in recent weeks. Reading has been admirable at times and despite them being 2 points ahead of QPR they are currently looking most likely to finish last in the league this season. Expect Reading to give a red hot go like they did against Manchester United but Arsenal should get across the line.
Predicted result: Arsenal 3-1
Betting Option: Arsenal to win at $1.71
All of the above are the opinions of the author and are not recommendations or advice. Bet at your own risk.
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