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Premier League weekend preview: Man Utd vs Spurs and more


Premier League weekend preview: Man Utd vs Spurs and more

Premier League weekend preview: Man Utd vs Spurs and more

Chelsea vs Crystal Palace

In the last week Chelsea have conceded three goals in 27 minutes to West Brom, before being knocked out of the Carabao Cup on penalties by Tottenham.

The fact that Frank Lampard appointed Thiago Silva as captain in the Brazilian’s first appearance for the club – despite the fact Silva speaks no English – also seems like a questionable decision. And when you get into a touchline barny with Jose Mourinho and it’s Mou who comes off looking the more reasonable, you have to wonder if the wheels aren’t starting to come off early for Chelsea’s manager.

All of which might not quite be enough to justify backing Palace in this game – but with the visitors available at 7/1 to win, given the Eagles’ strong start to the season, it’s worth considering.

Even if wily, defence-minded Roy Hodgson is hardly nailed on to take all three points, he could surely emerge with something at Stamford Bridge – and the Double Chance Palace or Draw bet is available at 2/1. That’s the one for me, anyway.

If you’re convinced Chelsea can stop the rot against Palace, the Blues are 2/5 for the win, with the draw a 19/5 shot.

Everton vs Brighton

Staggeringly unfortunate against Manchester United last week, then beaten by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side again (more deservedly) mid-week in the League Cup, Brighton might have another tough time of it this Saturday.

The Seagulls visit Goodison Park, where they face an Everton side enjoying their best ever start to a Premier League campaign. In fact, the Toffees have played six, won six so far this season in all comps, and while Brighton are likely to give them a contest, Carlo Ancelotti’s side look irresistible – as does Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

The 23-year-old has eight goals and two hat-tricks from his five appearances so far this season, and having just earned an England call-up for the imminent international break, it’s not difficult to imagine DCL’s scoring run continuing here.

Everton are 3/4, with the draw an 11/4 shot, while Brighton are 19/5 to win. Calvert-Lewin is unsurprisingly the favourite to score at 21/20; if that doesn’t float your boat, could Leandro Trossard be worth a look? Notoriously, the Brighton man hit the frame of the goal three times against Man United last weekend – Trossard is 21/2 to find the net here.

Leeds vs Man City

A potential humdinger this one, Man City’s ability to lurch from awesome unstoppable footballing machine to hapless tiki-taka twerps means this match could be awash in outrageous goal-porn.

Marcelo Bielsa’s side is not necessarily adept at keeping a clean sheet either; Leeds managed it last week against the Blades, but conceded three against Fulham a week earlier. Keep in mind also that even at their saggiest, City tend not to lose two on the bounce. The visitors are 7/20 to win at Elland Road, with Leeds 15/2 shots, and the draw available at 11/4.

It might be more rewarding to focus on the goals market – over 3.5 goals is available at 9/10, and over 4.5 is a 41/20 shot.

Newcastle vs Burnley

On the face of it, Newcastle appear to be in better shape than their visitors, Burnley having lost both of their opening Premier League fixtures before getting dumped out of the Carabao Cup on Wednesday by Man City.

Sean Dyche’s side still have injury problems too, although a number of players like Ashley Barnes and Ben Mee did return to training this week, with James Tarkowski back in action against City.

Newcastle are 7/5 for the victory, with Burnley 43/20, and the draw an 11/5 shot. But with five of the last six games between these sides featuring two or fewer goals, backing under 2.5 in the Total Goals market might be the way to go – that’s available at an admittedly skinny 3/5.

Otherwise, there’s not much in it, neither team filling us with confidence – the Magpies only earned a point against Tottenham last week after a last gasp penalty that left Tottenham fans fuming.

On the basis that they’re still looking for that crucial first win (or even point) of the season, and playing less than top drawer opposition, perhaps Burnley might be aggressive enough to get something here?

Leicester vs West Ham

Both these two sides had a weekend to remember last time out, Leicester dispatching Man City 5-2 before West Ham dealt with Wolves in imperious fashion, winning 4-0.

Top of the league Leicester didn’t have a League Cup game this week, having been knocked out by Arsenal in the previous round; by contrast, West Ham returned to winless ways, drubbed 4-1 by Everton at Goodison Park.

Even though West Ham played a weakened side played midweek, assuming football is following any kind of logic at this point you’d think Brendan Rodgers’ team should be the fresher of the two. The Foxes are 13/20 to take all three points.

West Ham can be backed at 4/1, while the draw is an 11/5 shot. The evergreen Jamie Vardy is just 10/13 to score for Leicester after last week’s hat-trick – if you want a different option, Harvey Barnes, having just been called up for England, may be in confident mood too. Barnes is 47/20 to score at any time.

Southampton vs West Brom

The Saints had to work for their win against Burnley last week; now they come up against Slaven Bilic’s Baggies, a team that started the season looking like patsies before going three-up against Chelsea in half an hour last week.

West Brom were eventually pegged back 3-3, and the Midlands side are still looking for their first league win – could they earn it against a Southampton side that sometimes struggle at St Mary’s? The Saints seem so hit-and-miss you just don’t know what to expect; they beat Man City here back in July, but also lost to Newcastle, Burnley, West Ham and Bournemouth at home over the course of the previous season. Three losses in their opening four games does not instil confidence either.

Is it a risk to back the Baggies here? Sure. They haven’t proven they can see out a game, and maybe last week’s performance was a one-off. Still, given Southampton’s own unpredictable nature, backing West Brom or the draw at 11/10 in the Double Chance market might be worth a look.

Southampton are 3/4, with the draw a 29/10 shot – and if you want to get stuck into the away win, West Brom are 18/5 for the three points.

Arsenal vs Sheffield United

Arsenal have begun the season well, Sheffield United have begun the season woefully; it’s a stretch to see Chris Wilder’s side upsetting the apple cart at the Emirates. True, the Blades may be rested, having not played midweek, but Arsenal’s defeat of Liverpool in the Carabao Cup will only have added to the good vibes around Mikel Arteta’s side.

The Gunners’ main weakness seems to be their insistence on playing out from the back in a manner that frequently seems to leave them inches from disaster, but so far they seem to have got away with it. Sheffield United haven’t even scored a goal yet in this league campaign, so it seems fanciful they can quell the north London giants here – even if new signing Rhian Brewster may be cause for some optimism.

It’s 11/20 for Arsenal to win – given Sheffield’s problems finding the net, you could bolster that price by backing Arsenal to win to nil at 29/20 in our match events section. The draw is 3/1, and for the record you can back Sheff Utd at 11/2 if you think they can land victory here.

Wolves vs Fulham

Not to put it too crudely, Fulham look f’ed already. Wolves were unceremoniously battered by West Ham a week ago, and will presumably want to atone for that defeat; on recent evidence, they could scarcely have hoped for more opportune opposition.

Wolves are 1/2 to win, the draw is 3/1, and Fulham are 13/2. Given the Cottagers have already lost three games this season 3-0 – including a defeat to Brentford on Thursday night – you could back over 2.5 goals if you’re feeling cautious at 57/50, or think big and back the 3-0 outcome for Wolves at 17/2.

Man Utd vs Spurs

Any chance Jose Mourinho will begin his team talk for this one with “Lads, it’s United?”

Probably not. After a defeat on the opening day of the season, Manchester United have improved – even if they’ve enjoyed some good fortune along the way. As for Spurs, they’ve had a strenuous but satisfying week, knocking Chelsea out of the Carabao Cup, then mullering Maccabi Haifa 7-2 on Thursday.

Both sides are unbeaten since the first day of the season. So who triumphs here? Well, Man Utd might be marginally fresher – but as divisive as he can be, currently Mourinho seems to have inspired a strong team spirit in Spurs.

Man Utd are 10/11 to win, with the draw a 27/10 shot and Spurs available at 3/1. I would be tempted to put my faith in Tottenham.

Aston Villa v Liverpool

Villa fans have to be pretty happy with the way the side have started this season, but Liverpool are a formidable test and you’d think the reigning Premier League champions will be too strong for Dean Smith’s team.

The Merseyside giants are just 8/25 to land all three points, with the draw a 22/5 shot, and Villa available to back at 9/1 if you think they can somehow get the better of Jurgen Klopp’s juggernauts.

A more rewarding bet might be to back Mo Salah to score – he hasn’t scored since Liverpool’s opening fixture, and it’s about time the Egyptian King got back on the scoresheet. Salah is 8/11 to score; last season, only twice did he go on a run of four games without finding the net.

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