By Antony Jordan
This week’s Super Sunday from the Premier League brings four matches as the three sides that played in Europe on Wednesday and Thursday hope to be rested enough after their midweek action to either bounce back or continue their good form. The biggest match of the day comes from Vicarage Road as Watford welcome Manchester United who are looking to turn their fortunes around after back to back loses, but can Jose Mourinho get his side working correctly for the opening clash this Sunday?
We preview this game, along with the Southampton v Swansea, Tottenham v Sunderland and the meeting of two sides that were not in European action in Crystal Palace v Stoke, with SportsInteraction.com to provide our best EPL picks this Sunday.
Despite sitting sixth in the EPL table coming into this match the visitors to Vicarage Road know that they have a lot of work ahead of them if they’re to snatch all three points after a pair of lacklustre performances as they were beaten 2-1 in the Manchester derby last weekend before a heavily changed side was beaten 1-0 in the Netherlands by Feyenoord in the Europa League on Thursday night. It can be argued that Mourinho either underestimated his opposition in Europe, does not care for that competition or was resting players to avoid back to back losses in the league. He will certainly have a fresh Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Wayne Rooney, Antonio Valencia and Luke Shaw all available for this match in both attack and defence, but will they inspire victory?
United have not lost a match to Watford in three decades when they were beaten 1-0 and have since won all ten meetings, including recording two one goal wins last season. They have defeated Bournemouth 3-1 and struggled past Hull on their travels this season, and with The Hornets having secured their first win of the season last weekend with a thumping 4-2 win over West Ham this game could be tricky for the side looking to move into the top three.
We do not feel that Watford have enough to win this match, however, but it should be a good match between two sides that are more than capable of scoring goals and have question marks over their defensive abilities. Goals is the way to go in this match and while Over 2.5 goals offers a good value at odds of 1.86 we feel that this game could also be settled by a single goal too. If that were to happen then there is only one name that jumps out from the squad lists – Zlatan – and we’re favouring the Swede to bag another EPL goal in an impressive start to his debut Premier League season.
While the Red Devils were struggling in the Netherlands on Thursday evening, The Saints had a far more enjoyable experience in the Europa League as two goals from Charlie Austin and a third from Jay Rodriguez saw them crush Sparta Prague on the same ground that they welcome Swansea this weekend. They will be desperate to build on that victory as they are 18th in the EPL having failed to collect a victory in the league so far, but memories of home and away wins against Swansea last season is sure to spur them towards their first three point haul of the campaign.
Swansea are not in much better form as they have collected just four points from their four games so far and just one point – coming from a goal down last weekend at Chelsea to draw 2-2 – since their opening weekend win over Burnley. Both teams are still finding their feet this season as Southampton lost their manager and a large portion of their attacking players, while the away side this Sunday lost captain Ashley Williams and their top scorer, so this game could easily go either way this weekend. The boost that the win in Europe will have given Southampton a big boost and victory was coming after dominating large portions of their game against Arsenal last weekend, but will the Thursday – Sunday combination of matches taken too much out of them?
We certainly feel that they are not deserving of being such large favourites to win this match with their current form and with Swansea not exactly setting the world alight right now we feel that a case can be made for both sides to win this one. However, if pushed we feel that Swansea have the more in form attacking players in Leroy Fer as he has netted three of their four goals this season, and we feel that he’ll give the away side the edge and we’re backing the away side as a result of this.
Tottenham are another side that found themselves with European woes this week as they filled out more than 85,000 seats at Wembley but could not use that fan power to see off Monaco as they were beaten 2-1 in their opening Champions League match of this campaign. This Sunday sees them play their second home match of the week at a second different stadium as they are back at their home of White Hart Lane as they take on a Sunderland side that sits second bottom of league having taken just a single point this season. Is this the perfect opportunity for Tottenham to bounce back from their midweek misery?
With Sunderland’s squad ravaged by injuries and the side having been ripped apart by Romelu Lukaku on Monday night, as well as having won just once at Tottenham in the history of the Premier League, we cannot see this match going any way but a home victory. Tottenham may rotate players, but they’ll still have more than enough to secure all three points and we see them doing this in style.
Our top EPL pick from this Tottenham v Sunderland game is back the home win and Over 2.5 goals @ 1.82 from White Hart Lane.
The side currently bottom of the Premier League travels to London this Sunday to take on Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park looking to avoid a third successive defeat in the league after conceding four goals to Man City and Tottenham in their last two home matches and losing 1-0 at Everton following a 1-1 away win against newly promoted Middlesbrough on the opening day of the season. They are a defensive mess at the moment and having to rely on 40 year old Shay Given in goal following the long term injury to Jack Butland is hurting them as they losing their heads at the worst possible times, but their best two performances have come on the road this season so will they be able to arrest their slide this Sunday afternoon?
We do not believe so as the clouds have parted in South London and the sun is beginning to break through as, after collecting just one point from their first three matches of the season, new signing Christian Benteke netted to help the side to their first victory this campaign as he settled as his new club perfectly. Stoke’s summer signings have not yet done this and we can see Benteke once again leading by example as the focal point of the attacks for The Eagles and bagging at least one goal in this match to leave Stoke in deep, deep trouble.