Liverpool FC: Christmas Crack Me Up Challenge
A full programme of midweek Premier League fixtures with the highlight the visit of Manchester United to Wembley and a Spurs side held to a 1-1 draw by Newport County at Rodney Parade on Saturday.
Swansea are looking for back-to-back wins in the Premier League for the first time this season following their 1-0 win over Liverpool last time although they have lost four of their last five home league games to Arsenal.
The Gunners have only won three of their 12 PL games on the road so far this season and I think the Swans will get a point given their recent improvement (seven points from four games) under new boss Carlos Carvalhal.
Tip: Game to finish in a draw at 7/2
Palace have only won one of their last nine Premier League away London derbies, but they have only lost one of their last five away games against West Ham and I feel they might come away from the London Stadium with all three points.
The Hammers were dumped out of the FA Cup at Wigan on Saturday whilst the Eagles had a rare weekend off and they should be fresher than their hosts who played a strong enough side at the DW Stadium.
Luka Milivojevic has scored in each of his last three PL away games and no Palace player has yet scored in four successive away games in the division.
Tip: Palace to win and both teams to score at 17/4
#LFC looking to recover from last week's upset…
🔴 #BetBoost 🔴
Liverpool v Huddersfield
Roberto Firmino to score in both halves – 9️⃣/1️⃣
— BetVictor (@BetVictor) January 29, 2018
The last time (November 1959) Huddersfield beat Liverpool my former club were in the old second division and the Reds have kept a clean sheet in their last six games against the Terriers.
Jurgen Klopp has never lost back-to-back in the Premier League and I expect his side to bounce back following their defeats at Swansea and their home loss to West Brom in the FA Cup last weekend.
Mo Salah has 18 goals in 23 PL games for the club so far this season and he and Roberto Firmino – 7 goals and 2 assists in his last 11 PL games – may again make the difference.
Tip: Liverpool to win to nil at 23/20
Chelsea are, reportedly, looking to bring in an experienced striker before the end of the transfer window on Wednesday night and it is possible that Michy Batshuayi will be on his way out of the Bridge despite scoring twice against Newcastle in the FA Cup on Sunday.
Eden Hazard has scored five times in his last four PL appearances against the Cherries and the Belgian may again be the scourge of Eddie Howe’s side at the Bridge.
** Editorial note Chelsea are 3/1 from 12/1 to sign Olivier Giroud with BetVictor before the end of the transfer window.
Tip: Eden Hazard to score at anytime at 5/6
Everton have had fewer shots on target than any other side in the division since Sam Allardyce took over and the Blues are without a win in their last six PL games.
The Foxes have kept a clean sheet in all three PL games of 2018, but they may lose that record at Goodison although I do not expect Claude Puel’s side to leave Merseyside empty handed.
Tip: both teams to score at 4/5
Newcastle are without a win in their last seven home PL games and have failed to score in five of those fixtures. Joselu is the Magpies top league scorer with four and all of those goals have come at St James’s Park.
Only Southampton (11) are on a longer winless streak than Burnley (7) in the league although the Clarets were able to rest at the weekend having been knocked out of the FA Cup at the Etihad in the third round.
Rafa Benitez is another manager looking to bring in a striker before the end of the transfer window and I cannot see many goals at what is sure to be a nervous St James’s Park.
Tip: Under 1.5 goals at 8/5
No real threat posed from The Magpies 🐦
FT: Chelsea 3 – 0 Newcastle pic.twitter.com/0lmTQidULV
— BetVictor (@BetVictor) January 28, 2018
As stated previously Southampton are without a win in their last 11 PL games but I expect them to get back to winning ways against Brighton in this south coast derby.
Saints have scored in their last six home league games but have also conceded in those fixtures although they did keep a welcome clean sheet against Watford at the weekend in the FA Cup. I think the Saints can keep the points given the Seagulls have failed to score in nine of their 12 away league games so far this term.
Tip: Saints to win to nil at 13/8
Manchester City have bounced back well from their Anfield reverse and have won their last 10 home games in all competitions. City have a great record against West Brom winning fifteen of the last 16 PL games between the sides including the last twelve.
The Baggies got a fantastic result at Anfield at the weekend but I do not expect them to follow up at the Etihad against this outstanding City side.
Tip: Over 3.5 goals at 23/20
Stoke have won their last four against Watford in the PL and I think the Potters will win back-to-back league games for the first time since last January.
I am still coming to terms with the fact that the Hornets sacked Marco Silva earlier in the month and this will be Javi Gracia’s first PL game in charge of the club. I expect Paul Lambert’s side to keep the points.
Tip: Stoke City to win at 5/4
Spurs have won their last two home league games against Manchester United but the Red Devils have won their last six at Wembley scoring at least twice in each of those games.
Harry Kane has currently scored 99 PL goals and the great Alan Shearer scored his 100th PL goal against United. I expect to see a hugely entertaining game, which could go either way, but the hosts get a narrow vote in a fixture that should see goals.
Tip: Spurs to win 2-1 at 17/2