Aston Villa 1.91, the draw 3.60, West Ham 4.15
Villa at odds on is a rare sight but form shows just one defeat – to Manchester City – in their last five. A lot clearly depends on Christian Benteke for any fixture but the Belgian’s record under Tim Sherwood is remarkable and after landing us a first goalscorer profit last weekend, the Premier League player of the Month is worth another punt.
West Ham meanwhile have been drifting to a mid-table finish for some time. Last weekend’s win over Burnley was the Hammers’ first in five and while Villa retain something to play for, a home victory is the logical outcome.
Best Bet: Christian Benteke to score at least twice 7.50
Score Prediction: Aston Villa 2-1 West Ham 8.00
Hull City 1.93, the draw 3.50, Burnley 4.20
I keep tipping Burnley to end their scoring drought and they continue to fail making this an obvious must win game. The Clarets won their appeal against Michael Duff’s red card while manager Sean Dyche is surely tempted to gamble on Sam Vokes who is just returning from injury.
Defeat against Arsenal should detract from Hull’s improved run but their record against Burnley is a poor one, losing eight of their last nine head to heads. Form however must dictate a home win although a Vokes – Ings reunion should finally see the Clarets hit the back of the net.
Best Bet: Over 2.5 Goals 2.18
Score Prediction: Hull City 2-1 Burnley 8.00
Leicester City 2.53, the draw 3.30, Southampton 2.92
Five wins from six have made Nigel Pearson an unlikely manager of the month but form side Leicester need to keep picking up points. Saints remain in the European places although Ronald Koeman’s men have taken just one point from a possible nine.
Injury news favours the Foxes with reports that David Nugent returns while Leo Ulloa and Marcin Wasilewksi have shaken off knocks picked up last weekend. Saints meanwhile lose James Ward-Prowse to suspension while Dusan Tadic and Morgan Schneiderlin remain on the treatment table.
All the facts might point to Leicester but I’m backing a share of the points here.
Best Bet: Both teams to score 1.77
Score Prediction: Leicester City 1-1 Southampton 6.40
Newcastle United 2.50, the draw 3.25, West Bromwich 3.00
No-one needs reminding of Newcastle’s place in the form table but how do we find some good news for Magpies’ fans? A further injury has extinguished the brief glimmer of hope offered by Siem de Jong but there is a chance that Papiss Cisse could make a welcome return for this game.
The bad news is that West Brom are unbeaten in three and haven’t conceded in that period. Without Cisse it’s hard to see the hosts ending that run but his potential inclusion may just force a draw.
Best Bet: Papiss Cisse to score anytime 3.15
Score Prediction: Newcastle United 2-2 West Bromwich 15.00
Stoke City 2.85, the draw 3.45, Tottenham 2.50
Prior to Spurs’ 1-0 win here last season, five consecutive games between these two had produced a 2-1 scoreline at the Britannia – three in favour of the away side. Tottenham’s form suggests Stoke could be ready to even that up but the Potters are also struggling as their generally productive season fizzles out.
Spurs continue to have injury concerns in defence with Kyle Walker and Ben Davies missing out but it’s up front where the lack of support for Harry Kane is now being exposed. Another draw is my tip with an overdue scoring contribution from Tottenham’s Christian Eriksen.
Best Bet: Christian Eriksen to score anytime 3.90
Score Prediction: Stoke City 2-2 Tottenham 13.00