Expert football pundit and analyst Andy Gray has joined Paddy Power to give his insight on the best of the Premier League betting.
Arsenal v Tottenham, Live on Sky Sports 2,
With the form of Arsenal and confidence being low there’ll be a lot of Spurs fans, and football fans, looking at that 3/1 for Tottenham with a great deal of interest. Don’t forget this is Arsenal’s worst start for a number of years.
This game could well finish 2-2. If this had been at White Hart Lane Spurs would have won. With home advantage and the confidence they’re playing with they would have picked up three points. Although Arsenal are low on confidence and belief, the fact that it is at the Emirates will help them. But it won’t help them enough to victory. There will be goals in the game, and goals for both teams.
Are Arsenal going to find the kind of form to take them to victory and stop conceding? Probably not, so the 12/5 on the draw is good and 10/1 on 2-2 is worth a punt.
It’s away from home but Jermain Defoe is in great form. He is a definite starter and 8/1 to open the scoring is a great bet. The odds on Olivier Giroud are also tasty. He is a forward who has found it a little difficult but once you start scoring and your confidence rises you’re scoring every game.
Liverpool v Wigan, Live on Setanta Sports,
This will be a very low-scoring game but Liverpool can win it because of Wigan’s durability. It’s hard to see goals in either side, especially Wigan being away from home. The Latics will be hard to beat and it will be a tight game. Liverpool have struggled with goals most of the season and unless Luis Suarez gets a hat-trick I can’t see a high scoring game.
Steven Gerrard could be the man to get the only goal though at 7/1 to score first. In the aftermath of his 100thEngland cap Gerrard will be buzzing. If you want some good value look to someone like Steven Gerrard or even Raheem Sterling who is 6/1. The youngster will be buzzing as well after his first England start and these are two players to look at if you’re looking away from Suarez and want some better odds. Liverpool should win at 4/9 and 1-0 is a good bet at 6/1.
Norwich v Manchester United, Live on ESPN,
4/9 is a good bet for Manchester United. This is a place where United can go with confidence, especially after that amazing result against Aston Villa. There is no reason why Sir Alex Ferguson’s men should go to Carrow Road and expect anything other than a victory. You can’t back anything other than a United win here. Sir Alex tells us that Javier Hernandez will play so it could be that Wayne Rooney drops back into the midfield diamond behind Hernandez and Robin Van Persie. At the beginning of the game United could start with three strikers on the pitch. For a first goalscorer bet Javier Hernandez is a tasty 7/2 and United have got goals in them. This should be a comfortable victory and 2-0 at 13/2 or 3-0 at 9/1 could be profitable.
Fulham v Sunderland, Live on Sky Sports 1, Sunday, 4pm
The momentum is with Martin Jol’s Fulham that’s for sure. Sunderland haven’t won away from home and only scored seven goals in 11 league games. This doesn’t have many goals in it but has 1-0 to Fulham written all over it. At 6/1 that would be the best bet in this match. The smart money would be on Dimitar Berbatov to open the scoring at 4/1 as well. If it’s a tight game and Sunderland are defending well then Berbatov is the man in the Fulham side with the individual ability to make something happen.
West Ham v Stoke, Live Sky Sports 1, Monday 8pm
Stoke are not good away from the Britannia. They are almost two different teams. At home you fancy Stoke to beat anybody but away from the Britannia they struggle. They haven’t won away from home this season and that won’t change this weekend. West Ham got a great victory at St James’ Park and Sam Allardyce will be in really good form and they should win at 21/20. Upton Park is a fabulous place to play night games at and the fans will be well up for it. Both 2-1 at 7/1 and 2-0 at 8/1 to West Ham represent good value.
Manchester City v Aston Villa, Saturday, 3pm
Aston Villa, in Christian Benteke, have found a guy made for the Premier League. He’s big, powerful and a goal-threat. Gabby Agbonlahor is back in the side and Andreas Weimann scored twice last week against Manchester United so Villa will believe they can upset the Champions. But Manchester City should still have enough and it should be a comfortable win at 2/9. The 2-0 correct score at 11/2 is worth a nibble. Looking towards a first goalscorer and Sergio Aguero has been struggling for a run of goals but got a crucial goal against Tottenham last week. It’s funny how goals come in little patches so back Aguero to open the scoring here at 3/1.
West Brom v Chelsea, Saturday 3pm
West Brom can score at home, like they did against City, like they did against Liverpool but can they win this game? Probably not. Having lost the lead in the league and having dropped a bit over the last few weeks Roberto Di Matteo will be anxious to get back winning again. Chelsea have a massive game away to Juventus on Tuesday so his team selection is important. It will be interesting to see who is rested, if anyone. If it is a full strength team Chelsea should win this one at 19/20 and the 2-1 correct score is worth a punt at 7/1.
Newcastle v Swansea, Saturday, 3pm
It was a great result for Sam Allardyce and West Ham last week beating Newcastle. Alan Pardew wouldn’t have liked that being the ex-West Ham manager but Big Sam would have loved it being the ex-Newcastle manager. It’s hard to know what you’ll get from Swansea though. Sometimes they are a team who can play fantastic football and open sides up and sometimes they are a team who are naïve at the back and look like conceding every time. Newcastle should win this at 10/11 but it won’t be emphatic. Swansea could score but in a tight game Newcastle to win 2-1 at 7/1 is worth a punt.
QPR V Southampton, Saturday, 3pm
QPR aren’t playing too badly and they’ve been in a lot of games where a lack of concentration or lack of confidence has cost them. But this is the point of no return. When you’re bottom of the league and you’re at home playing the team above you, you’re supporters expect you to win. Southampton have lost all five of their games on the road and conceded 18 goals in those five games. Southampton also know that QPR are bottom of the league and they won’t have a better chance of winning away from home. There’s pressure on both sides. Mark Hughes has to believe his side can win this game here though at 10/11.
Reading v Everton, Saturday 3pm
Reading are due a home victory but Everton have got a confidence about them where they believe they can win every time they go out. All the players are back from International duty. Leighton Baines and Leon Osman will be buzzing after playing for England and the Toffees will have too much for Reading. Everton are 5/6 to win which they should do and they could grab a couple of goals. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see goals in this game and 3-2 to Everton at 18/1 is an optimistic, but not unrealistic shout.