Premier League Preview | Matchday 16
Premier League Matchday 16: Weekend Betting Preview
The nights are continuing to get colder, managers are cracking under the pressure and the fixtures are coming thick and fast up and down the land. Football hardly gets better than this. With the league table now starting to find some kind of consistency, it’s looking likely an increasingly bad time to be stuck at the bottom looking up.
This week sees both Manchester clubs going at it against each other in what has to be the stand out fixture, with both sides equally desperate to improve their standing with three points. Once infamously dubbed as the ‘noisy neighbours’ of the city in a remark that truly hasn’t aged too well, Pep Guardiola’s side now boast a level of success and prestige that their Red Devil rivals can only dream of reclaiming one day.
Everton vs. Chelsea - Will Silva Still Be In The Dugout?
Another week, another disappointing display and another week of Marco Silva clinging on. Going into the midweek Merseyside Derby, the Portuguese manager had overseen a run of 8 losses in their first 14 matchdays, a cataclysmically bad return from a coach who has seen a huge amount of investment since his days at Watford. Three of Everton’s four wins this season have come at home, though they find themselves on the back of just one of those in their past five attempts. In the middle of a run of fixtures that sees them face off against Leicester, Liverpool, Chelsea, Manchester United and Arsenal, this could be crunch time for Silva.
Super Frank Lampard’s stellar start to his first season in Premier League management ran into a slight blip with back-to-back defeats against Manchester City and West Ham at Stamford Bridge. These losses brought an end to six straight wins for the Blues and saw the side’s xG (Expected Goals) dip into the red of +1.55 against what they had scored for the first time since the opening weekend of the season. For a side that has been so clinical up front and so inept in the art of defence, seeing a poor xG will cause some concern for ‘Lamps’.
Everton vs. Chelsea - Odds & Spreads
With their pre-season hopes of dismantling the top six seemingly at an end now, Everton have it all to do if they hope to make something of a success of this season. Chelsea are our favourites in this match at 1/1, with Everton’s odds slightly better than a draw at 12/5 and 11/4 respectively. Both sides have demonstrated a level of unpredictability so far this season, which might make our special Bad Beat promotion quite a handy tool to have up your sleeve. Back either of these sides to win, and if they go onto lose the match (but crucially win on xG across the game) we will completely refund your stake! (T&Cs apply)
Frank Lampard’s side currently boast a Win Index of 13.5-15 against Everton’s 8.75-10.25, with both sides priced to score their First Goals at 45.5-48.5 and 53.5-56.5 minutes respectively. Our traders have set Total Goals for the game at 2.85-3.05.
Bournemouth vs. Liverpool - Will Liverpool Ever Actually Slip Up?
Prior to their midweek game against Crystal Palace, Eddie Howe’s side were in the midst of a run of just one win in eight games, with three consecutive losses coming over the course of November. However, their last home game against Wolves was only the second time a side had come to the Vitality and picked up a win, with Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City being the other.
Whilst often being unremarkable, Liverpool continue to find a way of winning football matches. Despite being comfortably top Jurgen Klopp’s side have scored less goals than Manchester City, conceded more than Leicester and only managed two clean sheets in fourteen games. Winners find a way however, and stars such as Sadio Mane have proven to be instrumental for the Reds’ successes.
Bournemouth vs. Liverpool - Odds & Spreads
Unsurprisingly, Bournemouth come into this game as heavy underdogs at 5/1, with a draw currently at 7/2. Soon-to-be champions Liverpool will fancy their chances of keeping the good times rolling on the south coast at 1/ 2.
Klopp’s men currently boast a mighty Win Index of 17.5-19 against Bournemouth’s 5-6.25. These two sides have only kept five clean sheets between them all season and our traders have set Total Goals for the game at 3.1-3.3.
Spurs vs. Burnley - Mourinho Looks for Reply
Although Mourinho tasted his first defeat as Tottenham manager at Old Trafford on Wednesday night the decision to dismiss the legendary Mauricio Pochettino is looking increasingly like a good one. Generally, Spurs have seen a huge upturn in fortunes since the appointment of Jose Mourinho. Six goals in his first two games was a surprising introduction given Mourinho’s reputation, however four goals conceded in the same amount of games shows exactly where the issues lie in North London; one clean sheet in their first fourteen games is the worst record of any side in the entire league.
Two wins and four losses in their previous six games prior to the midweek fixtures saw Sean Dyche’s side slip to 10th in the table, having been as high as 6th in November. Their xPTS (Expected Points) has consistently been hovering around +4.00 against what they have achieved, which suggests they aren’t quite as clinical yet as they should be.
Spurs vs. Burnley - Odds & Spreads
Perhaps unsurprisingly, Mourinho’s side come into this game as heavy favourites at 2 / 5. A stalemate between the two sides is priced at 4/1, with Burnley’s odds at 6/1. Tottenham boast a Win Index of 18.5-19.75, with Burnley currently at 4.25-5.5. Total Goals for the game has been priced at 2.95-3.15 with a First Goal time of 31-33.5 minutes on the clock.
Watford vs. Crystal Palace - The Hornets Feeling The Heat?
We may not have even hit Christmas, however Watford are already onto their third coach in the dugout. The revolving door of managers at Vicarage Road has done very little to help with the Hornets league position however, spending all but two weeks of the season in rock bottom position with just one solitary win to their name so far. Back to back defeats to Burnley and Southampton spelled the end for Quique Sanchez Flores, with Watford’s xG of +7.89 against what they have actually scored is miles ahead of any other club in the league.
Having played Arsenal, Manchester City, Leicester, Chelsea and then Liverpool in a row, Palace fans can finally begin to look at the fixture list and see some potential wins. Roy Hodgson’s side have continued to look reliably consistent again so far this campaign, building out from the back with an xGA (Expected Goals Against) of +5.00 or so from what they should have conceded.
Watford vs. Crystal Palace - Odds & Spreads
In what is one of the toughest matches to call in this round of fixtures, the league’s bottom placed side are actually our traders favourites at 27/20. High flying Crystal Palace are at 2/1, while the draw is available at 9/4. Watford’s Win Index is currently priced at 11.75-13.25 against Palace’s 10.25-11.75. Watford remain the only side in the division to have not hit ten goals or more so far this season, and we have Total Goals between the two sides set at 2.4-2.6, with a First Match Goal timed between 36.5-39.5 minutes on the clock.
Manchester City vs. Manchester United – United look to Upset ‘Noisy Neighbours’
Pep Guardiola’s continued claims that his side are no-hopers in the hunt for the title looked far more accurate following the display against Newcastle a week ago. For the first time all season, City find themselves in the red for their xG, xGA and xPTS across what they have achieved, showing a level of vulnerability to the side for the first time since Pep’s debut campaign.
On the red side of Manchester, United are back to winning ways with an impressive win against Spurs on Wednesday. That will have thrown Ole Gunnar Solskjaer a lifeline but questions are still likely to be asked of the Norwegian, with in-demand Pochettino still available. United haven’t fared well on the road this season and Carrow Road remains the only away ground in the league where United have won this season, with the Red Devils only picking up six points so far on their travels.
Manchester City vs. Manchester United - Odds & Spreads
Defeat to City would pile pressure on Solskjaer again and his side’s chances aren’t looking the strongest in our latest odds. The Red Devils are currently priced at 17/2 to win against City’s 3/10, with a draw currently coming in at 9/2.
Guardiola’s City side boast a Win Index of 19.75-21 against United’s 3.25-4.25, highlighting just how embarrassingly wide the gap between the two Manchester sides truly is these days. United have only mustered one clean sheet since February last season and we have Total Goals for this game priced at 3.15-3.35, with a First Goal Time of 29.5-32 minutes.
Aston Villa vs. Leicester - Will Rodgers Stick It Out At The King Power?
Aston Villa’s return to the Premier League has, so far, gone positively swimmingly. Dean Smith’s side have taken points off the likes of Manchester United, West Ham and Everton and their xGA of +3.00 against what they have conceded shows off their healthy habit of keeping teams at bay.
Whilst he is easily establishing himself as one of the league’s very best coaches, there’s no denying Brendan Rodgers likes to play the field. His Leicester side have continued to take the league by storm however, racking up the division’s best defensive record with an xGA of +6.38 odd against what they have conceded.
Aston Villa vs. Leicester - Odds & Spreads
Brendan Rodgers’ side are understandably the heavy favourites in our markets for the win here at 3/ 4, with a draw between the two just edging out in front of Villa at 3/1 and 16/5 respectively. A trip to Villa Park certainly hasn’t been the easiest trip of the season for most sides so far, however, Leicester's Win Index has been handsomely priced at 15.25-16.75 against Villa’s 7-8.5. Total Goals for the game have been priced at 3-3.2, with a First Goal Time of 31-34 minutes on the clock.
Newcastle vs. Southampton - Vital Three Points Up For Grabs
Cast your mind back to the summer and the apparent disaster Newcastle United were sleepwalking into, now fast forward five months and the Toon are sitting comfortably above the relegation zone and boast one of the best home records in the division. A narrow 1-0 loss to Arsenal on the opening day of the season is the only loss at St. James’ Steve Bruce has to worry about, with his side claiming points at home against the likes of Manchester City, Manchester United , Wolves and Bournemouth.
Southampton’s fortunes have started to change since the 9-0 home whitewash against Leicester. They are now unbeaten in three matches and are finally starting to pick up points at St Mary’s.
Newcastle vs. Southampton - Odds & Spreads
These two sides look set to be locked nearer the bottom half of the table all season, and our traders have had difficulty separating them in this matchup with both clubs priced at 17/10 and a draw just outside them at 9/4.
With such a close contest on the cards, check out our Bad Beat promotion for the chance to reclaim your stake should either of these sides lose the game but triumph in xG over ninety minutes. (T&Cs apply)
Similarly, both sides find themselves priced exactly the same in terms of their Win Index, currently sitting at 11-12.5. Both sides have their First Goal priced at 54-57 minutes on the clock, with their second goals also locked together at 78.5-81 minutes.
Norwich vs. Sheffield United - Wilder’s Hunt For Europe Continues
Following a dismal run of nine losses in their opening twelve games, Norwich look to have turned something of a corner starting from their pretty shocking win over Marco Silva’s Everton. The Canaries continue to produce some of the most fluent and attacking brands of football in the league and are currently sitting with a much improved xGA of -0.50.
For Sheffield United, whilst much has been said about Chris Wilder, his overlapping centre-backs and water-tight defence, (United’s xGA of +5.60 remains only behind Leicester in terms of the best in the league) this is also a side that is growing in confidence in front of goal. In recent times, they’ve been able to score three past Manchester United and Burnley and, with an xG of just +0.66 against what they have scored, are clearly a side more clinical than most.
Norwich vs. Sheffield United - Odds & Spreads
Norwich’s recent upturn in form has seen their odds improve to 9/5, ahead of a draw at 5/2 but still behind favourites Sheffield United at 7/5. A battle between the two titans of last year’s Championship, Norwich City currently possess a Win Index of 10.25-11.75 against Sheffield United’s 11.75-13.25. These two sides have scored over thirty goals between them this season, and we have Total Goals for the game priced at 2.65-2.85.
Brighton vs. Wolves - Can Graham Potter Conjure Up A Much-Needed Amex Win?
Though he has rightfully won plenty of plaudits for introducing a far more forward-thinking and stylish way of playing, Brighton’s recent run has left manager Graham Potter look ever so slightly over his shoulder at the bottom three. Before his side’s trip to the Emirates in midweek, the Seagulls had gone through three losses in a row against Manchester United, Leicester and Liverpool. Their xPTS across the season has consistently been around +2.00 and +4.00 against their actual points tally, implying that they haven’t quite been able to find a clinical, winning formula.
Wolves don’t seem to quite have the same level of flair they boasted at this point last season, however they have been just as effective in racking up the points and are comfortably nestled amongst the top teams in another hunt for Europe. Unbeaten since the middle of September, their xPTS of +0.10 shows that they are exactly where they should be.
Brighton vs. Wolves - Odds & Spreads
In what has to be a badly needed win for the Seagulls, our traders have actually made them the favourites at 13/8. Wolves just edge behind at 7/4, with the draw falling ever so slightly behind them at 43/20. With both sides struggling to close out the wins they’ve arguably deserved at times this season, it might be handy to hear our Bad Beat promotion is in play for this game. Back either of these sides to win and if they go onto lose, but win on their respective xGs, we will completely refund your stake. (T&Cs Apply)
Both Wolves and Brighton are locked on a Win Index of 11-12.5, with Total Goals for the game currently priced at 2.2-2.4. First Match Goal has been priced at 38.5-41.5 minutes, with a First Brighton Goal timed for 55.5-58.5 minutes and Wolves’ First Goal alternatively available at 56-59 minutes.
West Ham vs. Arsenal - Can Arsenal Begin Salvaging Their Season?
Last week’s win over high-flying Chelsea probably came as much of a surprise to West Ham fans as the defeats to Newcastle and Burnley had done at the time. It’s been a strange season for the Hammers, now sitting far more comfortably thanks mainly to their impressive xGA of nearly +6.00 against what they have conceded. This is made all the more impressive given the track record of goalkeeping howlers that have been visible at the London Stadium in recent times.
Arsenal’s season has swung from mild implosion to full-on catastrophe in recent weeks, culminating in the dismissal of manager Unai Emery on the back of a run of five games in the league without a win. Their travels on the road has continued on from the Wenger-era to be one of the Gunners’ many Achilles heels, with the North London outfit only winning once away from home all season.
West Ham vs. Arsenal - Odds & Spreads
Whilst home advantage does account for something, West Ham come into this game behind their North London rivals at 13/5 and 17/20 respectively. A draw between the two can be found priced at 3/1.
Arsenal’s Win Index stands at 14.25-15.75 against West Ham’s 8-9.5, with Total Goals currently priced at 3.3-3.5, and a First Match Goal time of 28.5-31 minutes on the clock. Total Goal Minutes can also be found all together priced at 169-179 minutes.
What are your predictions for the latest Manchester derby? Will Liverpool continue their march towards one of the most one-sided title wins in Premier League history? Make sure you check out all of our Premier League spread betting and football markets ahead of another mouth-watering weekend in the Premier League.