The big story of last week in the English Premier League might have been the sacking of Claudio Ranieri, but Leicester City, along with five or six other clubs, are still in danger of relegation from the Premier League. Meanwhile, after winning the League Cup, Manchester United has all the momentum, and has a chance to overtake Liverpool for the European places. Let’s look at the top betting odds and predictions for March 4, 5 and 6.
SATURDAY, MARCH 4
Manchester United vs. Bournemouth
With Manchester United having won their last six games in all competitions, including the League Cup final, and Bournemouth having lost their last four league games, this match ought to be no contest. The Cherries have to start picking up points in order to avoid being sucked into the bottom three, but Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s form in front of goal will make sure they don’t here.
Top Bet: 19/10 with Betfair for Manchester united to win by more than three goals
West Bromwich Albion vs. Crystal Palace
Tony Pulis doesn’t have great memories from his time at Crystal Palace – the now-West Brom manager did a great job there, but was forced to repay a bonus in court, along with damages, after he left. This, along with the danger of relegation for Palace, makes for a spicy atmosphere between the two clubs.
Though West Brom has an outside chance of Europe, it’s more likely that the Eagles, who seem to have found a better balance of late, will come through and get at least a point from this tough away match, attacking down the flanks with Andros Townsend and Wilfried Zaha.
Top Bet: 12/5 with BetFred for a draw
Watford vs. Southampton
Saints, deflated after losing to Manchester United in the final minutes of the League Cup final, now have to dust themselves down and finish off what has been a particularly iffy Premier League season by the club’s recent high standards. Two wins and four defeats in the last six games makes this a particularly important three points for Southampton.
Watford may not have strung together a decent run of results all season, but, a bit like Southampton, new signings have been blended well into the decent nucleus the side had already. Only six games in all competitions have been won at home by the Hornets, but this could well be exception against a shellshocked Southampton.
Top Bet: 13/5 with BetStars for a Watford win
Swansea City vs. Burnley
Burnley’s rare point away-from-home against Hull last weekend should see Sean Dyche’s side safe, and it does seem like Swansea, closer to the relegation zone, needs the points more than the Clarets. However, every game in the bottom half of the table at this stage is a scrap, and the Swans’ poor record at the Liberty Stadium points to a draw.
Top Bet: 13/5 for Betfair for a draw
Stoke City vs. Middlesbrough
Stoke didn’t look like a team that was up for the challenge of Tottenham last weekend, and were perhaps lucky to only lose 4-0. It’s disappointing to see a side with so many high-quality elements losing so tamely, but against Middlesbrough, winless away from the Riverside Stadium since the second weekend of the season, a dull low-scoring draw is a distinct possibility.
Top Bet: 12/5 with Bet365 for a draw
Leicester City vs. Hull City
Leicester, with Craig Shakespeare taking temporary charge, needs every point it can get to avoid being the first relegated defending-champion side since World War Two. The bad news: Hull is in equally-dire need of results, and looks like a better side on current evidence.
Thanks to Hull’s (admittedly improving) defensive record and Leicester’s still-vibrant strikeforce, there are likely to be goals, but there will also be errors galore.
Top Bet: 5/2 with Sportingbet for a draw
Liverpool vs. Arsenal
Fourth-placed Arsenal, having seemed a good bet to fight for the title, now needs to stop Liverpool taking its final Champions League place. Whether or not that happens depends on whether the defence is a bit more savvy than was the case in that tumultuous 4-3 opening-day defeat at the Emirates against Liverpool.
There’s very little to choose between two well-oiled but tired teams, who look capable of sharing the spoils.
Top Bet: 11/4 with BetFred for a draw
SUNDAY, MARCH 5
Tottenham Hotspur vs. Everton
Spurs looked so good against Stoke, it’s tempting to already call this as an easy win,. However, Everton has not lost in the league in 2017, and the clinical victory over Sunderland showed that there is no intention of doing so now. This is likely to go Tottenham’s way, because of excellent form that Harry Kane in attack, and the defence as a whole, is showing at the moment. It will, though, be close.
Top Bet: 13/5 with BoyleSports for Tottenham to win by one goal
Sunderland vs. Manchester City
With Sunderland seemingly having picked up no motivation from that bonding trip to New York that was so poorly-received by fans and media, it looks a bit sticky for the Black Cats at the bottom of the table. Jermain Defoe is still doing everything on his own up-front, while the in-form combination of Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling will surely test the backline.
This will be a City win, but your hope of a winning bet is on the fragile away defence being breached by the intrepid Defoe.
Top Bet: 23/10 with Betfair for Jermain Defoe to score anytime
West Ham United vs. Chelsea
A London derby is always hotly-contested, and West Ham hasn’t lost in three games, moving into ninth in the table after a difficult start. Chelsea appears to be motoring towards the title, but has been more cautious in recent weeks.
This may give West Ham, with (excepting Andy Carroll, who is injured again) a settled side, that has attacking threats in the form of Manuel Lanzini and Robert Snodgrass, a chance to grab a point at the London Stadium. The only cloud on the horizon for the Hammers is the one-match ban for Michail Antonio, who was sent off in the last match.
Top Bet: 16/5 with BetVictor for a draw
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