Friday, August 25, 2006

EPL Betting

Manchester United have a great opportunity to maintain their winning start to the season while Chelsea are playing catch-up for a change. Bolton Wanderers could also keep Charlton Athletic rooted to the foot of the table.

Liverpool vs West Ham United

Saturday lunch time presents the replay of the FA Cup final with Liverpool winning the lions share of previous encounters at Anfield. The Reds have won the last five meetings at home, with the Hammers last taking something back to London during the 1998/99 season when the sides drew 2-2. Alan Pardew’s side have began the season well, with a win and a draw and striker Bobby Zamora has already bagged two goals this campaign. Liverpool have started slowly, managing a draw against Sheffield United on the opening game of the season, but with Champions League qualification secured, they can focus their attention on more domestic matters.

Walker’s Word: Liverpool to win @ 4/9 (UK Betting)

Charlton Athletic vs Bolton Wanderers

After two matches, Charlton are rock bottom of the Premiership and things could get worse by 5pm. The Addicks have suffered defeats against West Ham and Manchester United and go into this match knowing Bolton have won on their last three visits to The Valley. Last season it was 1-0 and three of the previous four meetings have seen the Trotters emerge 2-1 victors. Kevin Nolan has scored twice in his last three visits and could be a good investment on the “to score any time market” as could a 2-1 correct score prediction in favour of the visitors.

Walker’s Word: Bolton to continue Charlton’s misery @ 7/4 (Betfred)

Fulham vs Sheffield United

United earned a credible draw against Liverpool on the opening game of the season but haven’t played since, so it is difficult to judge how they will fair against some of the more “mediocre” teams in the top flight. Fulham, however, were thumped 5-1 at Manchester United last Sunday and needed a last gasp penalty to salvage a draw against Bolton midweek. The Cottagers were almost unbeatable at home last season and that is what I will base my prediction on for this match.

Walker’s Word: Fulham’s reputation at home to shine through @ 10/11 (Coral)

Tottenham Hotspur vs Everton

Following an opening day defeat against Bolton, Spurs cruised past Sheffield United in the week and will be expected to do the same against Everton. The Toffees have made a solid start to the campaign, beating Watford and drawing at Blackburn, but they have lost their last four visits to White Hart Lane. Spurs have won 2-0, 5-2, 3-0 and 4-3 in their last four meetings with Everton and bar a 1-1 draw in the 2001/02 season, have won seven of their last eight meetings at home. Such a record can not be ignored this weekend.

Walker’s Word: Spurs love beating Everton at White Hart Lane @ 8/11 (Paddy Power)

Watford vs Manchester United

Even without Wayne Rooney and Paul Scholes during the week, Manchester United were a class above Charlton as they won 3-0 at The Valley. It is arguable Watford are not a strong as their London rivals and with United in such good early season form, it is hard to make a case against them.

Walker’s Word: United to keep winning @ 2/5 (Ladbrokes)

Wigan Athletic vs Reading

Reading have made an excellent start to the season, akin to what Wigan achieved last term. After just one game for Wigan this season, a 2-1 defeat at Newcastle last weekend, it’s too early to tell how they are going to fair following the departures of Jason Roberts and Jimmy Bullard. I’m going to be boring and predict a draw.

Walker’s Word: The match to finish all square @ 9/4 (VCBet)

Manchester City vs Arsenal

In the eight times these two have met in the Premiership in Manchester, Arsenal have won eight times, including the last seven. City have also been on the receiving end of a few heavy defeats, such as the 5-1 battering in the 2002/03 season and a 4-0 reverse in 2001/02. City have not fared well so far this season, managing a goalless draw with Portsmouth following an 3-0 opening day defeat at Chelsea while Arsene Wenger rested a few players in the 2-1 defeat of Dinamo Zagreb in preparation for this match. Wenger will not expect any slip ups after a disappointing draw with Aston Villa to mark their first season at the Emirates Stadium and Arsenal will be expected to emulate the 3-1 score they achieved last season.

Walker’s Word: The Gunners to prevail @ 4/6 (Ladbrokes)

Aston Villa vs Newcastle United

Sunday sees a rejuvenated Aston Villa tackle Newcastle, who have won their only Premiership fixture so far this season. Despite no new arrivals and squad members Kevin Phillips and Mathieu Berson leaving in the week, there is a real buzz around Villa Park following the arrival of Martin O’Neill. An opening day draw at Arsenal was followed up by a 2-1 win against Reading after they fell behind after four minutes. Newcastle bolstered their forward line with the signing of Inter Milan striker Obafemi Martins to replace the injured Michael Owen but it may not be enough to return to Tyneside with all three points.

Walker’s Word: A hard fought draw @ 23/10 (VCBet)

Blackburn Rovers vs Chelsea

Chelsea suffered a shock defeat at Middlesbrough in the week, a stark contrast to their nine-match winning start to last season. Chelsea won their opening game comfortably against Manchester City and will be expected to beat Blackburn who have had a tough start to the campaign. A 3-0 opening day defeat at Portsmouth was followed up by a 1-1 draw at home to Everton and Chelsea are a cut above both of those teams. Blackburn won this fixture 1-0 last May but the Blues had already sewn up the Premiership by then.

Walker’s Word: Chelsea to get back on track @ 4/7 (Betfred)

Middlesbrough vs Portsmouth

Monday night pits Boro, who won beat Chelsea in their last match at the Riverside Stadium against an improving Portsmouth side. Boro fans will expect another win but this fixture has been a low scoring draw in three Premiership meetings – finishing 1-1 twice and 0-0 in 2003. A potential Monday night yawnfest in the making and the “Under 2.5 goals” market is an alternative to backing the draw.

Walker’s Word: A low scoring bore draw @ 9/4 (Coral)

English Premiership Betting

David Walker is the resident tipster at a popular free bets website. Feature Walker's Word on your own website, blog or forum for free each week.

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