Premier League Weekend Betting Preview
Last weekend was supposed to be the week that runaway Premier League leaders Manchester City were crowned champions of England. It looked an inevitable outcome at half time of their match with rivals Manchester United. Nevertheless, an unlikely second-half comeback saw City’s success delayed – at least for another week.
The Manchester club now face the prospect of four back-to-back defeats on Saturday evening. Last weekend’s Premier League loss, sandwiched between two Champions League defeats to Liverpool, sees the Citizens undoubtedly going through their worst patch for a very long time. Whilst their European exit might still hurt – it’s a trophy the club are yet to get their hands on – their league glory could still be confirmed this weekend.
Victory over opponents Tottenham Hotspurs isn’t enough for City to win the league however – they’d still be relying on United to slip to an unlikely defeat to bottom club West Brom on Sunday. Nevertheless, Pep Guardiola’s side will be desperate to relive that winning feeling, and edge themselves as close as possible to the title. Their midweek clash with the Reds won’t help matters though – it was a hard slog as they tried to huff and puff their way past Jurgen Klopp’s side. They took a mental and physical battering, despite dominating possession and chances, and that could show at Wembley on Saturday.
Spurs meanwhile have had a week to rest and prepare after their hard-fought victory over Stoke last weekend – their fourth victory on the trot in all competitions, and their sixth in the league. They’ve been in good form for a while now, and will be desperate to keep momentum flowing ahead of their massive FA Cup semi-final clash with the Red Devils the following weekend. They’ll have watched the midweek match, and they’ll likely take the game to City knowing their more vulnerable-than-normal state.
Pep Guardiola is likely to make a few changes – Gundogan will come in for the suspended Fernadinho, whilst Delph and Aguero will also likely start. That certainly doesn’t weaken the away side, in fact it more replicates the XI that defeated Mauricio Pochettino’s side 4-1 earlier in the season. Nevertheless, it probably wouldn’t be wise to back a City win for this, or even in fact, many goals. Combining City’s fatigue with Spurs’ impressive current form, and adding to it that Spurs didn’t concede at home to Liverpool, United or Arsenal this season, suggests a low-scoring home win could be on the cards.
For that reason there are a few bets that look tempting for this encounter. Firstly, back the home side to win at 6/4 with Boyle Sports. Go for a Spurs win and under 2.5 goals at very tempting 6/1 odds with the same bookies. Finally, Tottenham have been drawing at half time and winning at full time in five of their last six matches. Taking into account their fresher legs, that wouldn’t be a surprising eventuality again at the weekend, and can be found at 21/4 with Unibet.
Moving on to another London club chasing the top four, and another Saturday live match, sees Chelsea take on struggling Southampton. The Saints battled bravely against Arsenal last weekend, but came home empty handed as they fell to a 3- 2 defeat at the Emirates. The side from the South coast have now failed to win their last six Premier League matches and sit three points off safety.
The Blues haven’t looked much better recently – their defeat at home to Spurs was something of a knockout blow, whilst last weekend’s draw with West Ham at Stamford Bridge wasn’t much better. They’ve won just one of their last five league matches, and lost their last three away games, but their record at St Mary’s is encouraging – they’ve won three of their last four trips there, drawing the other.
With the home side in desperate need of points, and Antonio Conte’s men playing like they’re already on holiday, we’d be surprised if this ended as an away win. Backing the home side to take the game to their opponents by scoring first looks a decent shout at 17/10 with Paddy Power. The away side’s quality is likely to shine through though, so a 1-1 draw seems the most likely outcome. That score can be found at 6/1 with William Hill.
Another important match with massive implications at the bottom is Crystal Palace’s tie with Brighton. The home side have been coming very close to three points in recent weeks, but ultimately thwarted, while the Seagulls looked good against Huddersfield last week before conceding a very sloppy equaliser.
Chris Highton’s side have failed to win their last nine away matches, whilst under 2.5 goals has happened in their last 10 away games. They keep things very tight on the road, whilst Palace will look to attack them with their pace on the wings. The away side will know that a draw will probably do, whilst Palace will be gunning for all three points, so it could be a game of attack versus defence.
With their boisterous fans bellowing them on, and the away side likely to be forced deep, a home win seems inevitable. Palace have lost their last three home matches, but you can find a home win at 1 with Marathon Bet. The Seagulls are one of the league’s lowest scorers, and with them likely to be more focused on defending on Saturday, back Palace to win to nil at 2/1 with Boyle Sports.