My dear colleague Kurt is busy these days with the College Football Playoff, so I will take over his duties when it comes to English Premier League predictions. Be prepared to experience the European way of choosing the winning picks, and hopefully, it could be of use to you in everyday search for some additional cash.
The New Year madness in EPL unreal, and you often see some unusual results during this period. This year, the main question is whether Liverpool survives this period, which will be tough as hell for Klopp’s guys. If they come out of it with a bearable advantage over other rivals, we might say that the title is already theirs. Right now, they have 10 points more than Leicester and a game in hand, sow let’s say that they have a credit of dropping a few points here and there, having in mind their upcoming schedule. Their match against Leicester City, which is the derby of the round, along with the analysis of their future challenges, will be delivered in a separate article.
Also, do know that after each round we will update our page with picks for the upcoming one, so stay tuned and follow us here.
NEW YEAR’S DAY
Brighton vs. Chelsea
The Blues are playing solid on the road, but their inconsistency is so frustrating for their fans all around the globe. Losing against Bournemouth and Southampton at home was a slap in the face. Brighton is not very impressive at home. Therefore, Chelsea wins this one.
Pick: Chelsea (-105)
Burnley vs. Aston Villa
Two tough teams who aren’t playing very appealing, and that especially applies to the Clarets. Meanwhile, Villa can’t afford to lose, so we pick a draw at the halftime, because neither of the sides will risk conceding an early goal, and they will emphasize defenses in the first 45 minutes.
Pick: HT Draw (+125)
Newcastle vs. Leicester City
Definitely, a tough pick to be made, but having in mind that the Magpies play conservative and that Leicester too isn’t going to expose themselves too much, under 2.5 goals is the best choice here.
Pick: Under 2.5 goals (-110)
Watford vs. Wolves
After beating City, Wolves will try to materialize those three points. Meanwhile, the hosts also have their plans after beating Aston Villa, and they want to go upwards. Expect a tough game with moderate efficiency.
Pick: 2 or 3 goals (-105)
Southampton vs. Tottenham
The Saints started to play much better and the recent results are proving that. Meanwhile, Tottenham is struggling to win, but still scoring goals, and that is why we expect high efficiency in this one.
Pick: Over 2.5 goals (-150)
West Ham vs. Bournemouth
The Hammers have the new manager, David Moyes. We’ll see if that changes anything. On the other side, Eddie Howe’s guys have to snap out of the depression and start playing as they did over the previous several seasons. For us, this is a draw.
Pick: Draw (+275)
Man City vs. Everton
It’s Guardiola vs. Ancelotti. Another tough and dull opponent for the Citizens who will need to win this one. There is no room for any mistakes, and hosts’ win is inevitable. Try it with an Asian handicap -1.5
Pick: City -1.5 (+105)
Norwich vs. Crystal Palace
The Canaries are in problems, and that is evident. They are slowly heading towards the rock bottom, while Palace plays the ugliest football we’ve seen in years. And we will mention that all the time. It simply is like that. A draw here is our suggestion. Probably a goalless one.
Pick: Draw (+240)
Brighton vs. Bournemouth
Brighton had a chance to deliver another surprise on the road but failed to use it. After leading at the halftime against the spurs, they deflated in the second 45 minutes allowing the hosts to come back. On the other side, the Cherries did snap one point against Arsenal, but they have a hospital at the stadium. Six players, among them Ake, are not playing tomorrow at Amex stadium, meaning that the home team should take this one.
Pick: Brighton -125
Newcastle vs. Everton
If there is a game that isn’t promising a lot of goals, that is between Newcastle and Everton. The Magpies are playing one very boring and dull football. Meanwhile, Carlo Ancelotti immediately showed his future plans for Everton’s style of play. If you watched the game against West Ham, everything is clear to you. So under 2.5 goals here and don’t worry about it.
Pick: Under 2.5 -150
Southampton vs. Crystal Palace
We acknowledged Southampton’s solid form; it is just that we didn’t expect them to beat Chelsea. That was their fourth victory over the previous six matches, and the morale of the Saints skyrocketed. The Eagles, on the other side, are playing the same as ever, strong, ultra-defensive and pretty much boring. They are trying to protect their own goals first and to attack after. Still, in this one, the hosts are the favorites, due to their excellent shape at the moment.
Pick: Southampton -110
Watford vs. Aston Villa
Watford is showing some signs of life, and for the Hornets, this is the most important game of the season, If they defeat Aston Villa, who is, by the way, a direct rival for the relegation, they are back in the game. If not, it will be pretty hard for them to come back. The form of both sides is accending, and it will be very interesting to see this matchup. However, since it is an important game, we propose a draw at halftime. Neither of the managers would risk allowing the goal early and overexposing himself, meaning that they will be very cautious in the opening 45 minutes.
Pick: HT Draw +130
Norwich City vs. Tottenham
The Canaries are bad, and the way they play the relegation is awfully near. Meanwhile, the Spurs pulled back from behind against Brighton, and they somehow survived. After a series of tough matches, which should be the one in which Tottenham routinely wins.
Pick: Tottenham -150
West Ham vs. Leicester
The Foxes suffered a catastrophe against the leaders, Liverpool. It seems that they didn’t know what to do against the Reds, who obliterated them. Now they visit West Ham and Manuel Pellegrini, who is under heavy pressure. Everything points towards a game with low efficiency. Under 2.5 it is.
Pick: Under 2.5 +130
Burnley vs. Man Utd
United amazes us. They are absolutely unpredictable, and the first half against Newcastle was an excellent proof of that. The Red Devils are now taking on the Clarets who are playing though and physical football. We would go with Untied here, but something tells us that it is better to bet on low efficiency, or even better on both teams not to score. It is the second game in a few days, at the Turf Moore, where hosts defend masterfully, so we have to listen to our hunch.
Pick: Under 2.5 -125
Arsenal vs. Chelsea
The local derby comes after big disappointments for both sides, although Gunners fans got used to it recently. They have one win in the last 14 matches, which is unacceptable. Meanwhile, Chelsea’s youth started showing its vulnerabilities and after trashing Tottenham, Southampton shocked Stamford Bridge. Both sides like to play open football, and often both score and allow goals, so we will suggest both teams to score and over 2.5 hits.
Pick: BTTS and Over 2.5 +137
Liverpool vs. Wolves
This is going to be an interesting matchup, because both sides come in this clash after big wins. Liverpool is of course a favorite. We really expected to see the Reds so dominant against the Foxes, but that happened, and Klopp’s guys demolished the second-placed team in the standings. To cut to the chase, Liverpool wins this one.
Pick: Liverpool -450
Manchester City vs. Sheffield United
This is something City needs to win. Because of the morale and the standings, they need to beat the Blades. The guests meanwhile slipped in the previous round and we shall see how they react to that. Anyway, the hosts are massive favorites, and we propose betting on them.
Pick: Man City -450
Tottenham vs. Brighton
After being beaten at home to Chelsea, there is no other option for Tottenham but to win against the Seagulls. Although it will be an opening match of the day, and the primetime event which might bring some additional pressure, we can’t back up anything other than Spurs victory in this one.
Pick: Tottenham (-200)
Aston Villa vs. Norwich
This clash isn’t worth three points. It is a battle of two direct rivals for the relegation, meaning that the value of a win here is doubled. Both sides are in awful shape with five straight Premiership games without a victory. However, even though they lose games, these teams often score, which is why a moderate efficiency, 2 or 3 goals, in this match imposes itself as the logical solution.
Pick: 2 or 3 goals (+100)
Arsenal vs. Bournemouth
We can’t wait to see what Mikel Arteta brings to Arsenal. He will have the first test against Bournemouth, who is surprisingly bad this season. Eddie Howe’s boys have one win and six defeats over the recent seven games. Arsenal, meanwhile, one win in the last 12 matches. Therefore, a lot is at stake for both sides, at the Vitality Stadium, and neither manager wants to expose himself early. A draw at the halftime is our pick here.
Pick: HT Draw (+140)
The Blues need to get out of the hot-cold rhythm of performances as soon as possible. They lose at home to Bournemouth and after that beat Tottenham on the road. This is a perfect chance for them to do that. But although Saints sit in the lower part of the standings, they are playing much better now than at the start of the season. Their previous five games across all competitions on the road all saw over 2.5 goals and both teams to score. We will go here with a combo bet, Chelsea wins and over 2.5
Pick: Chelsea and Over 2.5 (-120)
Crystal Palace vs. West Ham
This is an extremely tough matchup with two unpredictable sides. Crystal Palace plays one of the dullest football in the Premiership. In 18 games, their goal-difference is 15:20, and that tells a lot. West Ham’s manager, Manuel Pellegrini, meanwhile, is under the massive pressure of the board, and if he loses this event, be sure that his stint with the Hammers is over. Basically, neither side wants to lose here, and that will cause for both managers to play defensively.
Pick: Under 2.5 goals (-110)
Everton vs. Burnley
The same applies here as for the above-mentioned match. Nobody wants to lose. Therefore, low efficiency is the first choice. Plus, Carlo Ancelotti makes his debut for the Toffees, and we all know that he isn’t a big fan of offense. Expect to see Everton tightened up in the back line, because the Italian’s philosophy is “defense first, attack later (or never).”
Pick: Under 2.5 goals (-110)
Sheffield Utd vs. Watford
The guests are coming to Bramall Lane massacred with injuries. Five of their top players are out for a long time, and even though they beat Manchester United, we can’t see them avoiding a loss against the biggest surprise of the EPL so far. Sheffield is on fire so far, and despite all the projections they are still not slowing down. We’ll see how much juice they have in their tank, but as for this game, there won’t be any problems for them.
Pick: Sheffield United (-120)
Manchester United vs. Newcastle
The easiest game for prediction this Thursday. Simply, United (particularly Solskjaer) can’t lose this one. If otherwise, the Norwegian manager will probably be fired from the managerial position. Apart from that, it is really tough to believe that United can’t defeat Newcastle at home, regardless of the circumstances.
Pick: United (-300)
Wolverhampton vs. Manchester City
The game which closes the round takes place on Friday. Wolves are one of few teams who knew how to restrain Guardiola’s machinery over the recent few years. In the last five matches, both sides have one win apiece, and three games ended without winners. During that span, only one saw three or more goals. Because of that, we are following the tradition in this case.
Pick: Under 2.5 goals (+137)
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.