The final two games from the first matches of the second half of the EPL season play this Sunday as Crystal Palace and Everton welcome Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur to Selhurst Park and Goodison Park. Coming into the weekend Palace and Tottenham occupy places in the top five of the league whilst the defending champions are just three points above the relegation zone and Everton slipped into the bottom half of the table after defeat in a seven goal thriller against Stoke last time around.
Who’ll take the points in these two first matches of 2016 for this four teams? We preview the action with Unibet.com to provide our favourite EPL picks from Sunday’s EPL card.
Going into the second half of the season it is far from a surprise to see that Crystal Palace are 11 points clear of the defending champions as they challenge for a place in Europe but they are still the outsiders to win this match. Under Guus Hiddink Chelsea have drawn back to back matches as they have looked more solid than the first part of the season that was overseen by Jose Mourinho, but apart from the 3-1 win over Sunderland under caretaker boss Steve Holland they have still failed to rediscover their title winning form from last season. Will this match be the turning point for the champions?
Chelsea did secure a 0-0 draw at Old Trafford in their final game of 2015 last Monday and with Crystal Palace having their attacking quartet of Yannick Bolasie, Connor Wickham, Bakary Sako and Dwight Gayle all out injured while Patrick Bamford has ended his loan spell and creative midfielder Yohan Cabaye misses the game through suspension they will be confident of securing another clean sheet as their hosts lack firepower up front. Chelsea have similar attacking injury problems too as Loic Remy is doubtful while Radamel Falcao is certainly out, but Diego Costa will be back for the match to lead the line.
However, with Chelsea short on goals, with Diego Costa having just five to his name this season, and Palace having conceded just nine goals at home in as many games this season we see this game being a close match with few goalscoring chances being made by either side. As a result of this we are backing few goals to be scored at Selhurst.
Our best Crystal Palace v Chelsea bet is back Both Teams to Score – No @ 1.83 with Unibet.com.
This match at Goodison Park promises to be all about goals as two of the top five goalscorers will be in action as joint top scorer with 15 in Romelu Lukaku lines up for the home side and Harry Kane, who has netted 11 times, will play for Tottenham, who nine places and points better off than their hosts. Despite the fact that the Belgian Everton striker sits top of the charts for putting the ball in the net there is some unhappiness coming from the stands on the blue half of Liverpool as they have won just one of their last six EPL games and they are piling up the goals conceded against them. This run of six games has seen them concede 12 times and collect just six points, but with 11 scored will they be able to use their explosive attacking talent to secure all three points this Sunday?
Tottenham are the opposite to Everton as you are confident about what you will get with them each and every time they play as they are one of the most consistent sides in the league. They are fourth in the EPL table coming into the weekend and are fourth in the form table while they have suffered just two defeats all season long. After a 1-1 draw at West Brom and late, and surprising, 2-1 defeat at home to Newcastle they have bounced back well and have won all of their three games over the festive period to leave some people whispering that this may in fact be their year as they are now just four points off the top of the league.
As well as this Tottenham are unbeaten in six matches against Everton as they have won three and drawn three in this time, including winning this fixture last season 1-0 as Harry Kane grabbed the winner after 24 minutes. We can certainly see the away side taking something back to North London from this match, but there is little value with Tottenham as the favourites to win. As such, our money is going on goals as there is sure to be plenty scored, unlike just five in the last five meetings of the teams, as Lukaku and Kane are right on form at the moment.
Our top Everton v Tottenham tip is back Over 2.5 goals to be scored at odds of 1.74 in the Unibet Sportsbook!