PL Predictions: Arsenal and Spurs to edge wins
Our tipster Jones Knows previews the weekend as he unleashes his tips, analysis and predictions on the Premier League games.
Any winners last weekend for Jones Knows?
- Liverpool to draw with Man City 3/1
- Over 3.5 goals in Saints vs Chelsea 3/1
- Tottenham to win to nil 3/1
- Brentford to beat West Ham 7/4
- Brentford to win 2-0
- Newcastle, Chelsea, Leeds all to win
Tottenham vs Brighton, Saturday 12.30pm
I am always drawn to the Brighton shots market when they take on one of the Champions League chasers as the markets tend to underestimate their lines.
In nine fixtures against the ‘big six’ this season, Graham Potter’s team have averaged 12.1 shots per 90 minutes, playing with their usual adventure and bravery albeit without much clinical edge. But it’s this lack of clinical edge that means they are always chasing the game which has a huge effect on their need to get shots away at goal.
Although I do not see them having enough quality to get a result in the match market, it’s a case of take your pick from the Brighton players with Leandro Trossard (4/5 with Sky Bet), Enock Mwepu (4/5), Danny Welbeck (4/5) and Lewis Dunk (7/2) all eye-catching plays to register two shots or more.
However, my eyes are drawn to Alexis Mac Allister, who is also 4/5 with Sky Bet for two or more shots.
He has been peppering the opposition goal with strikes. No player in the Premier League without a goal in the last six games has managed more shots on goal than Mac Allister (25) with seven of those coming in the 0-0 draw with Norwich. As long as he starts in his usual position just off the striker, he’s in a great spot to have two or more shots at goal.
SCORE PREDICTION: 2-1 | BETTING ANGLE: Alexis Mac Allister to have two or more shots (5/6 with Sky Bet – Bet Here!)
Manchester United vs Norwich, Saturday 3pm – PLAY SUPER 6 HERE!
This might be the weekend Manchester United fans put one in the bank with the other half and take that trip to IKEA rather than suffer more torture.
Talking of wardrobes, I quite fancy Harry Maguire to score.
One area Norwich struggle from that is not overly obvious from the raw numbers is their weakness defending set pieces. They have only conceded eight goals from corners this season – a fair return – but the underlying numbers paint a different picture. They have shipped an expected goals figure of 16.68 from set-pieces, excluding penalties – only Leicester have posted a higher return.
Opposition players have fired 145 shots from set-piece situations against Norwich – no team have conceded more. That makes our old friend Maguire a play at the prices. He can be backed at 7/1 with Sky Bet to find the net.
SCORE PREDICTION: 1-0 | BETTING ANGLE: Harry Maguire to score (7/1 with Sky Bet – Bet Here!)
Southampton vs Arsenal, Saturday 3pm – PLAY SUPER 6 HERE!
Ralph Hasenhuttl’s teams are all about momentum. When they are flying, they are flying. When they are bad, they are very bad. After losing just once in 10 games, they are now on a run of four defeats in five Premier League matches – and they were truly spanked by Chelsea last weekend.
This might be just what Arsenal need after back-to-back defeats but I would not be rushing to back them at 10/11 with Sky Bet. For the purposes of a prediction, I will side with them to come through a tight game with a one-goal margin victory.
That goal stands a fair chance of coming from a set piece. Saints have conceded a Premier League-high 12 headed goals this season, including in the corresponding fixture when Gabriel headed home.
This has triggered my interest in the Arsenal defender in the player shots markets, where he is priced up at 5/6 to have a shot on goal. The Arsenal defender, who has three goals to his name this season, is an aggressive attacker of a set piece and has fired 26 shots on goal this season.
That works out at just under a shot a game, so the basic maths tell you that against a team that Arsenal are favourites to win and are in for 14 shots across the entire team, the likelihood of Gabriel getting one of those should stand a greater chance of landing than the 5/6 available. His goalscorer prices of 18/1 to score first and 7/1 anytime are also worth considering.
SCORE PREDICTION: 0-1 | BETTING ANGLE: Gabriel to have at least one shot (10/11 with Sky Bet -Bet Here!)
Watford vs Brentford, Saturday 3pm – PLAY SUPER 6 HERE!
It’s hard to believe Watford finished above Brentford in the Sky Bet Championship last season. It goes to show you how important it is to get it right off the pitch with savvy recruitment backed up by a sensible business model. Brentford have nailed it. Watford have not.
Roy Hodgson’s unbalanced and flaky side have won just two of their last 20 games in all competitions and have amassed the fewest home points (7) of any team in the top four divisions of English football.
Meanwhile, Brentford are the first promoted team to win 10 or more Premier League games in their first season since Bournemouth in 2015/16, including five of their last six. They head here full of confidence having deservedly beaten Chelsea and West Ham, so the 6/4 with Sky Bet for another victory is an easy argument to make. I am always hunting for value though and am happy to invest in Bryan Mbeumo scoring in an away win at 7/1 with Sky Bet.
Ivan Toney is grabbing much of the headlines, scoring eight goals in his last eight Premier League appearances but Mbeumo brings plenty to the table too. He’s had 16 shots in his last five games which has generated an expected goals figure of 1.8 which makes his goalscorer price look rather generous.
Plus, he’s hit the woodwork seven times in the Premier League this season – the joint-most with Leeds’ Raphinha. He’s due a bit of fortune in that regard. Back him.
SCORE PREDICTION: 0-2 | BETTING ANGLE: Brentford to win and Bryan Mbeumo to score (7/1 with Sky Bet – Bet Here!)
Newcastle vs Leicester, Sunday 2.15pm, live on Sky Sports
Dan Burn is a friend of mine when it comes to overpriced centre-backs across a variety of markets. He’s not quite on my dream centre-back dinner party list just yet (Shane Duffy, Harry Maguire, Gareth McAuley, Yerry Mina and Craig Dawson if you are asking) but that may change if he delivers this weekend.
The Geordie boy has been sensational since joining from Brighton but what would put the cherry on the cake would be a goal at St James’ Park – every fan’s dream. I think Sunday could be the day for Burn up against this Leicester defence that have improved with the return of Jonny Evans and Wesley Fofana but still do not convince me when defending set pieces. The Foxes have conceded 16 Premier League goals from set pieces (excluding penalties) this season – the joint-most with Leeds.
Good quality chances have fallen Burn’s way in his nine starts for Newcastle which have equated to an expected goals figure of 0.73. Should the tallest player in the Premier League who has scored a header already this season and plays for a team that have scored 13 of their 34 goals this season from set pieces, really be 25/1 to score another? I would argue no. He’s the value play to score a header in a tight affair.
SCORE PREDICTION: 1-1 | BETTING ANGLE: Dan Burn to score a header (25/1 with Sky Bet – Bet Here!)
West Ham vs Burnley, Sunday 2.15pm
If this was a run chase, Burnley have fallen way behind on their required run rate. They can no longer block and push for singles. It’s time for Sean Dyche’s men to swing for the boundaries if they are to catch Everton and Leeds above them.
Draws will no longer do. They must add to their pathetic tally of just four wins – and this game will be seen as an opportunity to do so with West Ham’s Europa League commitments causing issues with their Premier League form.
This change of mentality to playing “must win” football in the last two matches has seen a positive effect on Burnley’s attacking metrics – something that will continue to spike over the next few weeks. Games have been much more open affairs with their past two games seeing five goals scored and a total expected goals figure of 8.71 when collating both teams.
Travelling to face a West Ham side whose games at the London Stadium average 3.13 goals and have seen a both teams to score 75 per cent of the time this season, does give this game the look of a goals-heavy one. The markets have the goal line around 2.5 goals which I think is too low. This means we must attack the overs with confidence at Evens.
I also want to throw in Burnley’s corner count into the mix. Dyche’s team won nine against Everton and seven in their defeat to Norwich – another sign their attacking intent has gone up a notch. Only Aston Villa and Southampton have won more corners in the Premier League since March 1 than Burnley and that included a fixture with Manchester City where they won just one. Take that game out and they are averaging 7.2 corners per 90 minutes.
Therefore, Sky Bet’s lines on Burnley corners are worth backing. Those that like thumping into short prices should take a look at Burnley to win four corners at 4/6 with Sky Bet as West Ham have conceded at least four corners in their nine Premier League games but I am pushing the boat out a little further by attacking the six or more corner line at a gigantic 3/1 with Sky Bet.