The start of the busy Christmas period with a full programme of games on Saturday the 26th

Recommendations

Stoke City to beat Manchester United 12/5 BetVictor

Leicester City to beat Liverpool 16/5 Coral

Arsenal to beat Southampton 11/10 BetVictor

Stoke City v Manchester United

After a run of no wins in six Premier League games and three successive defeats in all competitions Stoke away is a tough fixture for Manchester United to begin the christmas programme. Whilst Stoke lost to Crystal Palace last weekend their form of late has been much improved including the excellent home win over Manchester City with the flair of the Bojan/Arnautovic/Shaqiri front three bolted onto the usual defensive organisation.

United themselves under Van Gaal are a strong defensive team but the main worry remains their conservatism going forward and the very ponderous attacking tactics adopted. Given the way the teams set up i wouldn’t expect many goals here but Uited are definitely under pressure and it is interesting to see them installed as 7/5 favourites and Stoke at what looks like a whopping 12/5 by BetVictor. Ithink i have to back them at that price

Liverpool v Leicester City

Liverpool have one point from their last three premier league games, a late home draw against West Bromwich Abion, and have slipped to ninth in the table. For Jurgen Klopp, trying to implement his pressing system, the January transfer window cannot come soon enough. It’s understandable perhaps that they are favourites to win this game but odds on given the relative form of the sides?

Leicester were 5/2 to win at Everton last weekend, did so, and are 16/5 to win at Anfield a week later. This is a side two points clear at the top of the table, with Mahrez and Vardy having combined for 28 goals between them in 17 league games and in scintillating counter-attacking form. Leicester have won 11 league games and lost only once this season with a game based of pace and fast transition from defence to attack, and rarely having the majority of possession. 16/5 with Coral just has to be supported

Southampton v Arsenal

The 7.45pm game sees Arsenal visit Suthampton. Arsenal’s win over Manchester City on Monday night was an important one, given them a 4 point buffer over Cty which they will probably need at some point this season. With so many of the usual “top six” struggling they will never have a better chance of winning the title

Their trip to the South Coast is a chance to continue their momentum against opponents who are in a poor run of form with their manager calling them out for being soft and too nice. Southampton have lost four of their last five league games and Arsenal are available at odds-against here, 11/10 with BetVictor

Recommendations

Stoke City to beat Manchester United 12/5 BetVictor

Leicester City to beat Liverpool 16/5 Coral

Arsenal to beat Southampton 11/10 BetVictor