Sorry I don’t consistently get these going, my real job sometimes doesn’t afford me the time to. Nonetheless, I’m squeezing in a few minutes with an early look at the 7-game Saturday slate for the Barclays Premier League:
*home side listed first
Chelsea (1/3) v Sunderland (9/1) Draw: 4/1
Well, what’s new with Chelsea this week? Does anyone else here think that the Blues will go on a run now that Jose has been sacked? Let’s face it, he lost this team and pundits think he lost it as early as September. If this isn’t the only cure for this struggling champion, they get Sunderland at the Bridge. The Black Cats are brutal away, losing 5 of 6 away from the Stadium of Light and 4 of those losses conceding multiple goals. Willian will be the one everyone will flock to, but keep an eye on who starts at striker here, as I think that will be a strong play as well. If you’re into the broken house narrative with Chelsea, give Duncan Watmore and Yann M’Vila a look.
Everton (evens) v Leicester City (27/10) Draw: 13/5
Two of the in-form strikers in Lukaku and Vardy feature here. I prefer Lukaku, as Vardy will have a lot of his runs tracked by John Stones. Leicester are unbeaten away in their last six and scored multiple times in all six games, so I wouldn’t rule out a Vardy goal either. Everton have drawn three straight and they have all been score draws. In fact, the Toffees have one clean sheet in six, against Aston Villa. Love the wide guys in this one, midfielders and full backs. In short, this could be a game to stack, leaving you to find value in other games.
Manchester United (4/9) v Norwich (13/2) Draw: 7/2
David De Gea, David De Gea, David De Gea. Easily the chalk play in goal on Saturday, and while United have been brutal away, they have been a brick wall at home. They’re unbeaten in six at Old Trafford and conceded just one goal in the process. This includes goalless draws with Manchester City and West Ham. As fas as who to target in attack? Mata makes a nice play here, and you could go cheap and grab a guy like Jesse Lingard. Norwich have lost four straight away, conceding multiple times in three of those defeats. I have no interest in Norwich players on Saturday, but if you really feel you need one, Robbie Brady should start crossing the ball before he gets off the team bus.
Southampton (8/5) v Tottenham (7/4) Draw: 23/10
Southampton have lost three of their last four with the lone game being a draw with Villa. Not good, especially since the losses came against sides that are currently in the top half of the table. That’s what Tottenham is. Further problem is the Saints will be without Stekelenburg in goal. Gazzaniga may be an interesting GPP punt in goal as he’ll see some save volume. Bookmakers have this one pretty tight, and I also wouldn’t be surprised at a draw. Spurs might be unbeaten in six on the road, but only two wins here against Sunderland and Bournemouth. It has to be thoguht that they will want to put things right after the disappointing loss to Newcastle, but at the same time Southampton like to keep things tight at home. This will be a battle, and with some of the other players in simillar price points and favorable matchups, I’m not sure on the likes of Eriksen, Tadic, Kane or Pelle.
Stoke (7/5) v Crystal Palace (2/1) Draw 23/10
Stoke are unbeaten in 5 of their last 6, the loss coming to Sunderland away, but down to 10 men. 3 wins in this run; home against Chelsea and Manchester City with one away win at Southampton. 5 clean sheets in the last 6 as well with the only goals conceded coming in that short handed loss. So can someone explain to me why Butland is only 3500 for Stoke? I’m all over that play. Yes Palace have attacking quality, so much the better the young English keeper will have some saves. Palace have had a difficult run of away fixtures but most recently beat Liverpool and drew Everton away from Selhurst Park. If you think they can win at the Brittania, you’ll like Cabaye in midfield. Hennessey makes for a nice GPP play in goal as Palace are only a 2/1 dog. I don’t really see a goal fest here, and now that I’ve said that the match will end 3-2. Go figure.
West Brom (7/5) v Bournemouth (2/1) Draw 23/10
West Brom have Tony Pulis’ tactics half right this season; they are dangerous on the set piece, but not so water tight in defense. The Baggies aren’t going to be credited with being the sexiest team to watch, but they play an efficient game. That said, they’ll concede possession to their visitors and hope to hit on the break. Bournemouth are vulnerable in giving up goals on set pieces so WBA’s defenders are in play (2 defenders scored at Liverpool on set pieces). I also like Rondon and think he can score on Saturday. Winning 1-0 at Stamford Bridge against a Chelsea whose players didn’t like their coach only puts a band aid on the fact that Bournemouth’s away form is, well, rough. The Cherries were winless in 5 giving up multiple goals in each prior to the Chelsea win. I do like Ritchie and Stanislas a bunch, as they should rack up the peripheral stat points. If you’re a believer in Bournemouth, you might be giving Glenn Murray a go at forward as Josh King may not play.
Newcastle (19/20) v Aston Villa (14/5) Draw 5/2
I could see this game getting stacked with players from both sides as lineups will be looking for value. Newcastle have won two straight against Liverpool and Tottenham. Are they ready to turn a corner? Aston Villa are winless in forever, but they are playing better week after week under new manager Remi Garde. Villa now have a stretch coming up of many games against bottom half competition. If they’re going to get out of this mess, this would be good time to start. If you have exposure to multiple players in the match, have them in the flex at all possible as they are the later kickoff. Espeically as both teams may be rotating their lineups from their last match.
There it is. Have at it!