The Premier League season is well underway, and Sunday will see three more crucial fixtures. Our ‘Tips for football’ column guides punters towards some of the value bets in these big matches.
Match: Liverpool v Arsenal
Tip: Lay Liverpool
Odds: 2.05 Betfair
Match: Newcastle v Aston Villa
Tip: Newcastle Win to Nil
Odds: 3.0 Ladbrokes
Match: Southampton v Manchester United
Tip: Manchester United Win to Nil
Odds: 2.8 Paddy Power
Liverpool v Arsenal
Liverpool look too short at a fraction over even money to win here. Last year saw the Reds fail to win on 13 of the 19 occasions they played at Anfield, and when they last faced Arsenal at home – as recently as March – they were beaten 2-1. Brendan Rodgers has not had a great deal of time to make an impact, and while the performance against Manchester City was encouraging, the 1-1 draw with Hearts was less so. The Gunners meanwhile have suffered from a lack of cutting edge, but with the fire power at their disposal that is not likely to continue for too long. Cazorla looks high class already, and Podolski and Giroud have plenty of potential and proven track records – question marks still exist though, and Sunday may answer some.
Newcastle v Aston Villa
Newcastle played in the Europa League on Thursday night, hence the Sunday kick off. Fatigue is not an issue however, as Alan Pardew played a largely second string side. The Magpies are short priced favourites to win, and with Villa’s start to the campaign it is easy to see why. The villians looked toothless at West Ham on the opening day, and were then humbled at home by Everton. Paul Lambert has a significant task on his hands. The value bet however, could be a home win ‘to nil’. Ladbrokes offer 3.0 and Newcastle won 7 of 19 to nil at St James Park last term. Given Aston Villa’s distinct lack of goal threat, that price offers some margin for profit.
Southampton v Manchester United
The Saints won many admirers on opening weekend, when they traded blows with the reigning champions and gave Manchester City a run for their money. The follow up game against Wigan however, highlighted some significant shortcomings, and with United having dropped points at Everton already, the visitors will not be in charitable mood. United are a best price 1.6 for the win, but better options lay elsewhere. Bare statistics indicate the away win ‘to nil’ price is too big at 2.8. Last season saw the Red Devils win 9 of 19 away games to nil – but disregard fixtures against sides in the top 6 and the ratio is 9 wins to nil from 14 games – 64%. Plenty of value in 2.8 then.