With the EPL suspended next weekend in favour of the all important Euro 2016 qualification play-off matches and a number of friendly games the matches playing this weekend offer sides a great chance to reflect on a job well done during their off time. This, of course, is only if they take all three points and defeat could see them dejected for a fortnight before taking the field again and, despite it being so early in the season, this could cause lasting effects.
We preview all of the seven Premier League matches playing around England this Saturday, including the must win clash of Bournemouth v Newcastle as both sides aim not to be in the relegation zone for the next two weeks, as well as the potentially goal filled clashes of West Ham v Everton, Sunderland v Southampton and Leicester v Watford plus all of the other games too.
All odds for our EPL tips are provided by online sportsbook WilliamHill.com.
Bournemouth v Newcastle: 2.20 – 3.40 – 3.20
The Vitality Stadium hosts the first meeting between these two sides since they drew 2-2 in the FA Cup almost 24 years ago and this weekend’s Premier League opener will be just the seventh time they have met in all competitions. The first whistle will see these two sides separated by a single point as they straddle the relegation zone line with The Cherries just out and The Magpies just in, and poor starts to the season coupled with injury crises leave both sides bereft of confidence. That said at least one of these two teams has to take something from this match, but who’ll hold their nerve to do so?
The biggest talking point coming into this early season relegation six pointer is the worsening of Newcastle’s goalkeeper injuries. Already number one and two shot stoppers Tim Krul and Karl Darlow are missing and now third choice ‘keeper Rob Elliot is doubtful after picking up a thigh injury and this could see Steve McClaren be forced into handing 18 year old Fred Woodman his EPL debut. The away side have issues at the other end of the pitch too with just a single goal in five away games giving them the worst scoring record on the road in the top ten divisions.
Coupled with not scoring goals on the road Newcastle have conceded 11 in their last three away games and will not be confident about keeping a clean sheet against a Bournemouth side that has scored in each of their last four home matches. They may have just five goals for and seven against in this timeframe but they are certainly a threat going forwards. Whether they can use this to win this game we are not sure as we feel that both of these sides could easily take all three points, but we can certainly see goals in this game and, if Newcastle can rediscover the form that saw them put six past Norwich, we see goals from both sides.
Back both teams to score and +2.5 goals in Bournemouth v Newcastle @ 2.05 with William Hill.
Leicester v Watford: 1.85 – 3.75 – 4.00
This Leicester v Watford clash at the King Power Stadium poses an interesting clash of sides as Leicester are rampant in front of goal this season with their 23 goals scored seeing them second only to Manchester City. However, Watford are getting to grips with the Premier League as they have recorded back to back wins for the second time this season with defeats of Stoke and, more impressively, West Ham and they’ll be aiming to take advantage of the 19 goals conceded by their hosts to win three in a row in the top flight for the first time since 1987.
To do this though Watford will need to figure out a way to prevent the form player of the season so far, Jamie Vardy, from hitting the net as the England striker has bagged a league best 11 goals already this season. His midfield team-mate Riyad Mahrez sits joint second with Watford hitman Odion Ighalo behind Vardy having netted seven goals and with Leicester having the worst defensive record in the top 14 sides and Watford with just a single clean sheet on the road this season we are backing goals in this match.
We are backing both Leicester and Watford to score and +2.5 goals at odds of 2.10 in the William Hill Sportsbook.
West Ham v Everton: 2.50 – 3.40 – 2.75
Both of these two teams approach this 12th match of the season in very different forms as last weekend saw the high flying Hammers lose for the first time in eight games as they were beaten 2-0 at Watford while Everton took out their frustrations of going three matches without a win by punishing Norwich in a 6-2 home win at Goodison Park. West Ham will be looking to return to winning ways this weekend and The Toffees will look to keep their resurgence going, but which side will emerge victorious at the Boleyn Ground in East London?
It is the away team who have had the better of the recent results between these sides as they have not lost on this ground since 2007 and have won 11 and draw six of the 17 meetings between the sides in all competitions since that time eight years ago. The Merseysiders have had better away form than their hosts home record too with Everton winning two and drawing two of five while The Hammers have won two and drawn one following back to back defeats to Leicester and Bournemouth at the start of the season.
This is another match that we could see going either way as both sides are more than capable of winning the game and the William Hill match odds reflect these thoughts. We are shying away from the outright market of the game as a result, but with seven of the total ten home and away games played by these sides this season this West Ham v Everton game is another clash in which we are predicting goals.
Our top West Ham v Everton tip is back both sides to score and +2.5 goals to be scored @ 1.91.
Sunderland v Southampton: 4.75 – 3.60 – 1.75
Maybe we should have changed the order in which we review these games around as, surprisingly, we believe that this clash of Sunderland and Southampton at the Stadium of Light is one that will provide us with goals. The reason for this is that four of the last five meetings between the teams have seen at least three goals and new Sunderland boss ‘Big’ Sam Allardyce has lamenting the defensive options at his disposal all week following the 6-2 hammering at Goodison Park by Everton last Sunday to see the momentum brought from the 3-0 win over local rivals Newcastle blown away under the barrage of goals on Merseyside.
They welcome a Southampton side this weekend that is unbeaten in seven games in all competitions and with goals coming from all over the pitch, especially from players such as Graziano Pellé and Sadio Mane, The Saints pose a massive threat to the Black Cats. We cannot see anything but a comfortable victory for the south coast team.
Back Southampton to win and +2.5 goals to be scored at the Stadium of Light at odds of 2.70 with WilliamHill.com.
Manchester United v West Brom: 1.36 – 4.00 – 12.00
They may be the massive favourites to triumph on home soil in front of the Old Trafford faithful, but goals are in very short supply for Manchester United recently. Their 1-0 win against CSKA Moscow in the Champions League saw their first goal since they drew 1-1 in the Russian capital four matches previous and with them having lost both of their last two home clashes with West Brom, scoring just a single goal, are the bookmakers incorrect in believing that this will be a comfortable victory for United?
We feel that as The Baggies are one of the lowest scoring sides in the league, with just ten in 11 games, and United on a run of four clean sheets in a row in all competitions and having kept four shutouts in five EPL games we can see them winning this match as they stifle the West Brom attackers. However, with four clean sheets in five away Premier League games this season it will not be easy for United to break through the backline of their guests either and we’re few goals to be scored at the Theatre of Dreams.
Our money is on a home win and -2.5 goals to be scored in Manchester United v West Brom @ 2.80 in the William Hill Sportsbook!
Norwich v Swansea: 2.50 – 3.10 – 2.90
After good starts to their seasons, things are coming apart for both Norwich and Swansea in recent times as they have slid to 16th and 13th in the EPL table at the start of this weekend of football action. The Canaries are without a win in six matches in all competitions and have lost all of their last four in the league whilst failing to keep a clean sheet so far this season. They have conceded an average of more than two a game and while they are second only to Chelsea in goals scored in the bottom half of the table they need to work on shutting up shop at the back if they are to win more points.
Swansea come into this match with four losses in seven having defeated only bottom of the table Aston Villa since a 2-1 home win over Man United at the end of August. They have scored just six goals in the seven games of this poor run and four of those came against Villa and Tottenham. They are goal shy at the moment as main striker Bafetimbi Gomis has failed to find the net since that win against Louis van Gaal’s men, but with Norwich leaking like a sinking ship right now we expect this Carrow Road clash to be another game with goals this weekend.
We are backing +2.5 goals to be scored in this game at odds of 1.95 with William Hill.
Stoke v Chelsea: 3.60 – 3.40 – 2.05
The final match of this Premier League Saturday sees two underperforming sides do battle at the Britannia Stadium for the second time in ten days. The last time saw Stoke progress to the Quarter Finals of the Capital One Cup on penalties to further plunge Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea into chaos and with them three goals and two points better off in the Premier League table they will believe that they can upset the odds once again against the reigning EPL champions.
One of the biggest problems that Stoke will have with this is that they are the league’s lowest goal scorers having bagged just nine goals in their 11 matches so far, but with just 12 goals conceded they have already conceded ten fewer goals than Chelsea. With captain Ryan Shawcross back at the heart of the Stoke defence and leading them to a clean sheet against Newcastle last weekend their confidence will grow further. However, both sides have lost three of their respectively home and away games this season whilst failing to keep clean sheets in any of these matches, so we believe that this match is another game of the weekend that will see goals scored.
Back +2.5 goals in this Stoke v Chelsea game @ 2.05 at WilliamHill.com.
We are particularly happy with all of these bets this weekend as we feel that there are a lot of evenly matched sides clashing in the EPL this Saturday with fine attacking players and leaky defences. However, our top EPL picks are as follows:
- Leicester and Watford to score and +2.5 goals in the game @ 2.10 – This pick is basically guaranteed as Leicester have been so good going forward and so poor defensively. Watford are a smart team and will be able to manage at least one against the high flying Foxes as Ighalo and Deeney have looked excellent up front. There will be goals from both teams in this game.
- Southampton to beat Sunderland and +2.5 goals in the game @ 2.70. The Saints are another side in superb form this season and, unlike Leicester, they are more than capable of defending. Sunderland have been leaking goals badly and things are likely to get worse for them this weekend.
- +2.5 goals in Norwich v Swansea @ 1.95. Norwich are a side that likes to attack, but in doing so they leave themselves open to conceding goals. They have been doing this a lot this season and although Swansea are finding it tough going in front of goal we foresee them bagging goals in this one and there being plenty of goalmouth action.