Analyst: Alex Christodoulou
Nov 08, 2018 03:27 PM
Second coming of the Special One
The Manchester derby is the standout fixture this weekend.
Jose Mourinho will be looking to work another miracle after Man U's great escape against Juventus in the Champions League.
But before that blockbuster at the Etihad, there are a host of other fixtures to look forward too.
Namely, Leicester's emotional return to the King Power, where they will take on a struggling Burnley.
And keep your eye on Chelsea. They will be aiming to continue their unbeaten start to the season against the Toffees.
Leicester City v Burnley
EPL Odds: Leicester $1.45 / Draw $4.20 / Burnley $7.50
While it is in no ways a glamour fixture, the eyes of the footballing world will be turned to the King Power Stadium on Saturday for what is sure to be an emotionally charged match.
It will be the first home game that Leicester will play after their beloved owner, and not to mention four others, perished in the now infamous helicopter crash just outside the King Power.
The Foxes came out last week and got a timely 1-0 victory away to Cardiff.
Since then, the squad have spent two days in Thailand attending the funeral of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha.
While this was a touching tribute, it can't be an ideal preparation for a football match.
The travel alone would take its toll, not to mention the chance that the emotion of the situation will overwhelm the Leicester players.
That's why the $7.50 for Burnley is way overs, despite the fact that the Clarets are going through a horror patch of form.
The strength of Sean Dyche's Burnley has long been there rock solid defence that gives nothing away to opponents.
But in recent weeks, there hasn't been just a chink in this defensive wall, but a gaping hole through which goal after goal is being scored.
Incredibly, Burnley have conceded 13 goals in their last 3 EPL games.
While 9 of these goals came against the attacking powerhouses of Man City and Chelsea, last week's 4-2 defeat against West Ham didn't inspire much confidence.
But unless there are massive internal issues we're not hearing about, you can bet that Dyche will get his defence back on the tracks before long.
That could come here, especially as they come up against a side whose heads may well be elsewhere.
Key EPL Stat
- The home team has won the previous four encounters between these sides: Leicester to win @ $1.45
EPL Betting Tip: No bet
Reasoning: While Burnley are great value if you want to chance your arm, there are too many factors to suggest a bet with any real confidence.
Leicester vs Cardiff City Source: AAP
Chelsea v Everton
EPL Odds: Chelsea $1.33 / Draw $5 / Everton $8
Almost a third of the way into the season and Chelsea are looking like the real deal.
Maurizio Sarri has worked wonders since arriving from Napoli in the offseason, having yet to suffer his first defeat.
Eden Hazard is in career-best form, N'Golo Kante is relishing playing further up the pitch and even Alvaro Morata and Ross Barkley are starting to find their feet in a Blues shirt.
There are no obvious weaknesses in Sarri's 4-3-3 system, which plays right into the hands of Chelsea's technically gifted squad.
The short passes and intricate movements have proven too much for just about every opponent this season, and especially at Stamford Bridge.
Everton face a mammoth task to get anything from this clash.
Despite the fact that the Toffees have found form by winning four of their last five in the league, the boys from Liverpool are notoriously poor travelers.
Going to Stamford Bridge is one of the toughest road trips in the competition, and why Everton will need to produce something extra special to get anything from this clash.
The good news for Toffees fans is that both Richarlison and Gylfi Sigurdsson are looming as definite threats to Chelsea's defence.
The pair have netted 7 of Everton's last 11 league goals, often assisting each other to boot.
They will need to combine for another swag of goals here, as you feel that Everton's only chance is to outscore their opponents.
That's because while Chelsea's attack is flourishing, their defence looks like their only vulnerability.
The Blues have conceded in four of their last five games in all competitions, demonstrating that the Toffees will have their chance if good enough.
But at the Bridge, the Blues still look far too strong.
Key EPL Stat
- In Chelsea's last 5 games as a home favourite, there have been more than 3.5 match goals scored: Total goals over 3.5 @ $2.37
EPL Betting Tip: Chelsea to win by 2+ goals @ $2.10
Reasoning: The Blues have so many avenues to goal under Sarri. This will prove too much for an Everton side who tend to struggle on the road.
Manchester City v Manchester United
EPL Odds: City $1.33 / Draw $5 / Man U $7.50
Manchester derbies are always among some of the most keenly anticipated games of the season.
This fixture is no exception, with many expecting Pep Guardiola's Citizens to continue on their merry way to the title, walloping the Red Devils by a margin of at least two goals in the process.
There's no doubt that Man City are in imperious form. They backed up their 6-1 victory over Southampton last weekend with a midweek 6-0 victory over Shakhtar in the Champions League.
Raheem Sterling, Sergio Aguero, Riyad Mahrez and David Silva are tearing it up in attack, cutting each defence they come up against to ribbons.
But even more impressive has been Man City's defence.
They've only conceded 1 goal in more than 700 minutes of football. That was Danny Ings's penalty last round, meaning that the Citizens have gone all this time without conceding from open play.
But if there was anyone to halt the freight train that is Manchester City, it is the Special One.
If Jose Mourinho can somehow manufacture a win, Manchester United fans around the world we be performing backflips, declaring that they always had faith in the Special One.
This is after Man U's Champions League result midweek, where the Red Devils scored twice in the dying stages to defeat a Cristiano Ronaldo-led Juventus side in Turin.
If Mourniho's men can win away to Juventus, there is no doubt that they can repeat the dose against City.
While the market has got carried away, history tells us that the Manchester derby is a typically tight affair.
Indeed, the previous seven have been decided by 1 goal or less.
Key EPL Stat
- The Citizens have failed to win their previous 3 Manchester derbies at home: Manchester United to win or draw @ $3
EPL Betting Tip: Match to end in a draw @ $5
Reasoning: As all-conquering as the blue side of Manchester have been, the derby is always a different fixture where form goes out the window.
It comes down to who turns up on the day. The history suggests it will be tight, and the $5 for a draw is too juicy to pass up.