Premiership Preview – 8 February 2013

This entry was posted on Friday, February 8th, 2013

It was only a few weeks ago when Reading seemed the only ‘certainty’ for relegation, but after a recent run saw Brian McDermott being named Manager of the Month after collecting ten points from four games, the bookmakers don’t know which way to turn. QPR, Villa, Southampton and Wigan all join them in being priced at 2/1 or under to face the drop. Our pick would be to suggest Wigan’s time is finally up – an 11/10 shot at Blue Square.

Meanwhile in form Reading face an out of form Stoke and we can’t see any value in backing the Potters at odds on given they’ve picked up just two points from their last six Premier League games. Reading have amassed 13 in the same number of games. One way to play this match may be backing both teams to score – Reading haven’t had a single clean sheet on the road since their return to the Premier League but have been amongst the goals of late – scoring in each of their last eight games. Stoke meanwhile have only been shut out at the Brittania in the Premier League by Arsenal, Chelsea and Sunderland in the last twelve months. Both teams to score is 1.94 on Betfair.

After letting a 3-1 lead at Goodison Park slip last Saturday, Paul Lambert’s team have now relinquished two goal leads in their last three Premier League away games. The signs are however reasonably encouraging and if they can be slightly more stable defensively they could secure a massive win at home to a West Ham side which has lost seven of their last eight League away trips. No side has scored fewer than the Hammers on the road this season (seven) whilst only QPR have scored less at home than the nine Villa have. We’ll back Villa at 6/4 with Bet365 whilst under 2.5 goals at 5/6 with Blue Square looks good.

Whilst Chelsea should probably see off Wigan this weekend, they are not in the sort of form where you should be backing them at the general 1/3 price on offer. Instead we’ll simply back Wigan to get a goal in the game. The latics have scored in their last five Premier League away games whilst Chelsea are on a run of just two clean sheets in eleven games, stretching back to December 30th. You can back Chelsea not to keep a clean sheet at 1.74 on Betfair.

Everton may lie fifth in the table, but we think they’ve peaked for this season and that’s why we’ll back Manchester United in Sunday’s game. The Red Devils are 8/11 with Bet365 yet as short as 4/7 elsewhere and we’ll snap that up. The price is probably better than you’d expect due to their game at Real Madrid on Wednesday, but the fact is their Premier League home record of eleven wins from twelve games shows how reliable they are. Everton’s last gasp 4-4 draw at Old Trafford last season was one of just two draws in the last 46 Premier League home games at Old Trafford but we don’t fancy a repeat.

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