By Antony Jordan
Following the Friday night clash of Manchester United and Southampton at Old Trafford there are another seven fantastic EPL matches being played this Saturday around the UK in the second week of Premier League action. The biggest match of the weekend sees the sides that finished first and second last season look to bounce back from their opening match defeats with victory at the King Power Stadium, but will it be Leicester or Arsenal that claims all three points?
We preview this match and the other six games of the day with online sportsbook Bet365.com to provide our best EPL picks!
The champions play their first home match of the season and after suffering an embarrassing loss at newly promoted Hull last weekend as they welcome the side that finished second to them, Arsenal, to The King Power Stadium in the late kick off this Saturday evening. Despite the fact that they lifted the EPL trophy by a massive ten points last season two of their three defeats during the last campaign came against Arsenal as they were beaten 5-2 on this ground and were edged out 2-1 at The Emirates. Leicester will be aiming to avoid defeat while Arsenal need to claim another win over The Foxes as they were beaten 4-3 on home soil by Liverpool last weekend so, even though it’s just the second game of the season, this is a must win for both teams.
The home side will be boosted by the return of Robert Huth in defence, but there is more uncertainty for The Gunners who were missing three first choice central defenders last weekend as Aaron Ramsey and Alex Iwobi are both out injured now too, while Arsene Wenger may have to rush Laurent Koscielny back into action after no pre-season games following his participation in the European Championship Final with France. We feel that this will be another close game between the two sides, just as the second meeting was last season, but with defensive frailties exposed last weekend we see goals being, once again, the value bet.
We are backing Both Teams to Score – Yes and Over 2.5 goals at The King Power Stadium @ 1.95 with Bet365.com.
Both of the sides involved in the lunchtime kick off in the EPL had very close and very tight matches last weekend as Stoke were held to a 1-1 draw at newly promoted Middlesbrough while Manchester 1.45 – City only snatched all three points thanks to a late own goal at home to Sunderland in Pep Guardiola’s first match. The home side this weekend have since rested, but City found themselves in Romania during the week as they aim to qualify for the Champions League but will their 5-0 win over Steaua Bucharest see them boosted for this match or running on fumes?
Sergio Aguero did bag a hat-trick during the week despite missing two penalties and after scoring the opener last weekend he’s already on four so will fancy his chances in this match, especially as Stoke are missing their number one goalkeeper Jack Butland for this tie and are likely to play 40 year old Shay Given again. However, City have won just one EPL clash between these sides since Stoke’s promotion in 2008 as they were first outmuscled by a physical Stoke side before Marko Arnautovic, who returns from injury this weekend, scored both goals here last season in a match that Stoke deserved to win. We can see Aguero again finding the net against a suspect ‘keeper, but we do not believe that they deserve to be the odds-on favourites for this clash.
Our best Stoke v Man City bet is back Sergio Aguero to score anytime at odds of 1.83 in the Bet365 Sportsbook!
Neither of these two sides contesting this London derby at White Hart Lane had the start to the season that they were expecting as Everton struck first against Spurs last weekend to lead after five minutes, before The Lilywhites drew level on the hour mark at Goodison Park. That match ended level while Palace were beaten on home soil by a West Brom team that nobody gave any chance to prior to kick off as their lack of attacking options was hammered home. They have since agreed to sign Christian Benteke from Liverpool and he will be massive for them, but he is not their player yet and they will need something extra special to take something from this match.
Palace have seen Mile Jedinak and Yannick Bolasie exit the club to Aston Villa and Everton respectively since the loss to West Brom, but James Tomkins, James McArthur and Jordon Mutch are likely to return while Yohan Cabaye is now match fit enough to start this match. Will it be enough to see Palace win their first EPL clash on this ground since 1997?
Tottenham are missing Hugo Lloris in goal and midfielder Mousa Dembele through injury and suspension for this match but with them showing that they are capable of playing well when they get going, despite the fact that nine of their starting XI last weekend had played in either the Euros or Copa America, and the fact that Palace are light on attackers we see Tottenham winning this match and taking their first three point haul of the season.
Our top Tottenham v Crystal Palace tip is back Tottenham to win by at least two goals (Tottenham -1) @ 2.20 at Bet365.
It’s been one in and one out at Turf Moor this week as Sean Dyche has traded up with David Jones moving to Sheffield Wednesday with record signing Steven Defour arriving in his place, but after a difficult opening day that saw them beaten 1-0 at home to Swansea will the arrival of the Belgian playmaker boost The Clarets to the extent that they’ll be able to defeat Liverpool?
The Reds bagged four goals in their opener away at Arsenal last Sunday and while they also conceded three times they will feel confident coming into this match after scoring so well despite missing key striker Daniel Sturridge through injury. With Sturridge and James Milner now back in contention for this match while two goal hero Philippe Coutinho has come through after being subbed last weekend with cramp. With Burnley not scoring a goal in six matches and more than 40 years in the league against Liverpool along with the side sitting second in the table firing in four goals last weekend we can only see this match going one way.
Our money is on Liverpool to win by at least two goals (Liverpool -1) at odds of 2.50 at Turf Moor.
With six defeats and two draws since their last victory against Chelsea in 1999 this home clash with The Blues at Vicarage Road will be difficult enough for The Hornets, but with Ben Watson suspended after seeing red 12 minutes after coming on last weekend while Brice Dja Djedje and Isaac Success are both injured will this be too much for the home side to manage?
Chelsea secured all three points on Monday night thanks to an 89th minute winner from Diego Costa against West Ham to see them full of confidence for this clash and with only Mikel John Obi unavailable due to international duty Antonio Conte is likely to keep faith with his winning side. With the likes of Costa and Edin Hazard creating and scoring goals for Chelsea along with new signing N’Golo Kanté mopping up defensively the away side in this match are certainly the better of the two teams so we believe that the match odds are correct. However, both managers had a number of comings together when they managed in Italy so they will both be desperate to win this match and we can see this being a lively encounter but we are favouring an away win at Vicarage Road.
Our best Watford v Chelsea bet is back the away win @ 1.72 with Bet365.com.
These teams begin this weekend sitting sixth and fourth in the EPL having secured all three points on the opening weekend as Swansea edged out winners of the Championship Burnley and newly promoted Hull defeated the EPL champions Leicester. These were two results that were not expected and very few people saw both of these teams coming into round two of the season at the top of the league, especially considering Hull’s off field problems. They may have only 13 senior players available for this match again and this match is away from home instead at the KC Stadium like last weekend things will be much harder for the Play Off winners from last season.
Swansea will see their record signing striker Borja Baston out injured for this weekend’s match but midfielders Gylfi Sigurdsson and Ki Sung-yueng are ready to start and will provide The Swans will extra attacking threat from the middle of the park. Swansea are unbeaten in eight matches in August and with Hull weakened we feel that they offer the best value on taking all three points at the Liberty Stadium this Saturday afternoon.
Our top tip on this Swansea v Hull clash is back the home win at odds of 1.80 in the Bet365 Sportsbook!
Both of these sides claimed a single goal away victory against the other last season as West Brom triumphed 1-0 at Goodison Park to claim revenge for the five thriller that saw Everton come from two-nil down to net three goals in the final 35 minutes of the game and after positive starts to the season both sides will believe that they can claim the first home win in a clash between the sides since 2013.
West Brom will be boosted by the return of James Morrison for this match, while both Yannick Bolasie and Ashley Williams are in line to make their debuts for Everton to boost their attacking and defensive capabilities. Like several other matches we see this being a closely contested match as West Brom are a typical Tony Pulis side in being tight and defensive while Ronald Koeman oversaw one of the tightest defences in the EPL last season, so we see few goals in this one at The Hawthorns. However, if either side is to edge ahead and take all three points we feel that it’ll be the visitors who excelled on their travels last season and we’re backing the away win in the Midlands this Saturday.
We are backing Everton to beat West Brom at The Hawthorns @ 2.60 with Bet365.
Top EPL Picks:
We correctly predicted one of our three top picks last week as Leicester failed to win while Southampton and Watford failed to find a third goal, but we’re confident of securing a perfect three from three this Saturday.
- Sergio Aguero to score anytime v Stoke @ 1.83. The Argentine hitman faces a 40 year old Shay Given and we can see only one winner in this clash!
- Chelsea to beat Watford @ 1.72. Chelsea have not lost to Watford since the last century and with their performance on Monday night against a much better West Ham side we can see them beating Watford in this one.
- Swansea to beat Hull @ 1.80. Swansea are unbeaten in eight EPL matches played in the month of August and they will strengthen their side for this match while Hull are still in disarray and cannot continue to upset the odds. We see a home win in this one.