Honest thoughts on Chelsea so far? It’s hardly been a blistering start from Frank Lampard’s men to be fair, despite spending huge coin and doing some great business over the summer. Fifteen months after his appointment it’s clear that there’s still major work to be done at Stamford Bridge and their defence is just not good enough as things stand. The Blues look pretty short at 4/9 and I can definitely see Palace scoring. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again. Wilf Zaha is a proper baller.
Betting: Chelsea to win & both teams to score at 9/5 (Paddy Power) – Odds may fluctuate, accurate at time of printing
Dominic Calvert-Lewin now has eight goals in five games and it’s all getting a bit mental. He’s the first player to score hat-tricks in back-to-back home games under Carlo Ancelotti since a certain Cristiano Ronaldo back in 2014. Quiz question answer? James Rodriguez played in all four of those matches. Thank you Richard Jolly. But mentioning DCL in the same breath as Ronaldo? That’s 2020 for ya, folks…
Betting: Calvert-Lewin to score anytime at 11/10 (Paddy Power) – Odds may fluctuate, accurate at time of printing
This should be f**king fascinating. The Citizens scored 100 goals last season but looked like a bag of rags against Leicester. Leeds will press, hurry and harass their all-star foes, and it’s such a shame there won’t be a full house to watch the inevitable fireworks. Will Pep’s mob be able to cope with the intensity and physicality of Bielsa’s pretenders? Telling stat time. Leeds top the Premier League rankings for distance covered and sprints so far, running over 8km more per 90 minutes than City have.
I could end up looking a mug here but my gut feeling is that Leeds are too big at 6/1. That Leicester shellacking was the first time a Pep Guardiola team has conceded five goals, and while one can expect a reaction the pressure is firmly on the too cool for school Spaniard following Liverpool’s perfect start. His ante-post title favourites have been pushed out to 13/8 for the league with some firms and a crippling injury list ain’t helping.
Betting: Leeds to win at 6/1 (Paddy Power) – Odds may fluctuate, accurate at time of printing
Last week’s 1-1 draw at Tottenham illustrated one of the most fundamental yet still under-appreciated truths of human existence, which is this: Newcastle under Steve Bruce are totally just winging it, all the time. The Toon have scored with 100% of their shots on target in the Premier League this season. They somehow have four points from three matches. A nonsense of a team. For the record I had a £350 on a Leeds – Tottenham double last Sunday. Roll. On. Death.
Betting: Burnley to win at 2/1 (Paddy Power) – Odds may fluctuate, accurate at time of printing
The Foxes are flying and there is a case to be made for every reader of this column unloading the clip and smashing into them at 4/6 to beat West Ham on Sunday. They will win. They are the Bilton banker. And while Jamie Vardy is grabbing all the headlines, Harvey Barnes is on fire as well. And he likes playing West Ham. The 22-year-old produced a goal and an assist in a 4-1 win during the corresponding fixture last season.
Betting: Barnes to score anytime at 11/4 (Paddy Power) – Odds may fluctuate, accurate at time of printing
The Baggies ripped up the script against Chelsea last weekend and were no doubt the toast of bookies up and down the land after that 3-3 draw. It’s a big game, this, between two sides who I expect to be scrapping at the wrong end of the table this season. Relegation dogfight is a bit of a cliche. But it is a game of two halves. There are no easy matches at this level. You don’t want to score too early. And these are top, top players. And of course those types of decisions tend to even themselves out over a season.
Betting: Southampton to win at 3/4 (Paddy Power) – Odds may fluctuate, accurate at time of printing
Sheffield United are hoping to end a six-match winless streak in the Premier League but there’s genuinely more chance of getting a pint in a boozer after 10:30pm than there is of them beating Arsenal. To be fair the Blades have a decent recent record in the capital (unbeaten in their last nine) but I don’t see them keeping Arsenal’s exceptional attacking threat at bay at the Emirates.
Betting: Arsenal to win 3-0 at 10/1 (Paddy Power) – Odds may fluctuate, accurate at time of printing
The Cottagers head to Molineux on the back of three straight losses. They have conceded ten goals already, and alarm bells should be ringing. Scott Parker said he was “disappointed” that owner Tony Khan had apologised for Fulham’s performance following Monday’s 3-0 defeat. If you fancy them to rebound the away win is 6/1 here. I prefer the 4/1 about Raul Jimenez scoring a brace or better. The Mexican has scored in two of the three game weeks so far. Some pan of chips the lad!
Betting: Jimenez to score 2+ goals at 4/1 (Paddy Power) – Odds may fluctuate, accurate at time of printing
Sunday’s clash at Old Trafford could easily end up as a draw, even though precisely none of the previous 14 meeting between these two sides have ended all square. Harry Kane has gone full Kevin de Bruyne in recent weeks, weighing in with five assists already this season. By the way Eric Dier sloping off for a mid-game sh*te against Chelsea was peak 2020.
Betting: Draw at 13/5 (Paddy Power) – Odds may fluctuate, accurate at time of printing
So Ross Barkley then. Is Dean Smith the man to finally unlock the key to the kingdom? Or is he now one season away from joining Besiktas? It’s a bold move and a smart play by the Villa. Barkley is in that bracket of English player who is too expensive for anyone outside of the Champions League to sign, yet not quite good enough for the actual Champions League. He joins Ollie Watkins, Emi Martinez, Matty Cash and Bertrand Traore and a Villa side who’ve won every game so far. The Villains could be worth a small bet to claim a draw against the champions. I said what I said…
Betting: Both teams to score & draw at 6/1 (Paddy Power) – Odds may fluctuate, accurate at time of printing
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