Two nil-nil draws for Brighton since the restart suggest the side are still not exactly fizzing with effervescence – but those bore-draws did bookend a victory over Arsenal at the Amex Arena.
It’s a result that possibly says more about the Gunners’ sloppiness than any killer instinct in the home side – still, the Seagulls will have been delighted to take three points. Can they pull off a similar trick on Tuesday?
Perhaps surprisingly, Brighton have a decent record against United at the Amex, winning 1-0 back in November 2017, and taking a 3-2 victory over the Manchester side last season. United have been steadily improving in this campaign though, and with a potential Champions League place up for grabs they need to keep the pressure on Wolves, currently three points ahead.
Unaccountably, United have often been at their worst against the weaker teams this season; losses to Newcastle, West Ham, Bournemouth and Watford attest to that.
Yet Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side are currently on a seven-game unbeaten run in the Prem, and gave Sheffield United a 3-0 shoeing last time out in the league. With Brighton struggling to find the net and the visitors in good form, it could pay to back United to win 1-0 at 21/4 and 2-0 at 13/2.
Norwich have scored one goal in their last seven league matches, and whatever Arsenal’s own issues, the North London club have won their last two matches in all comps, and can surely clean up against the Canaries.
Assuming Aubameyang isn’t rested, he has to be a very likely candidate to find a way past Norwich’s defence – he put two past them at Carrow Road earlier in the season.
Back Aubameyang to score first at 5/2.
The Magpies have won their last two away games (admittedly, they were both back in March) and may fancy their chances against a Bournemouth team that are currently 18th in the league and in real danger of relegation.
But after Wednesday’s game, Bournemouth face Man Utd, Spurs, Leicester and Man City in successive games; a win or even a point against Newcastle looks by far their best chance to get something out of the next few weeks.
Howe surely has to go for it here – but even so, deadlock might still be the likeliest outcome. You can back the draw at 43/20.
Leicester remain in third place in the Prem, but they haven’t won a game since the restart and haven’t even scored in their last two matches (against Brighton and then Chelsea in the FA Cup at the weekend).
The Foxes look pretty flaccid right now, and unless Brendan Rodgers can shake things up quick-smart, Everton could capitalise here. With Leicester’s last league away win coming back on New Year’s Day, could be worth taking a chance on the Toffees, unbeaten at home in their last eight league games. Back Everton at 8/5.
It’s tough to make a case for the home side, who have lost three games on the bounce since the restart. Two of those defeats came at the London stadium, and West Ham haven’t even scored a consolation goal across that trio of losses.
Chelsea, by contrast, come here on a run of five wins. Frank Lampard’s side are clear favourites and should leave East London with all three points. Back Chelsea to win to nil at 9/5.
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