You know the festive season is approaching when the big guns are rolled out in midweek, and it is these tricky fixture pile-ups that generally separate the wheat from the chaff come the end of the season.
There’s some intriguing match-ups on Tuesday this week, so where does the pick of the Premier League betting value lie?
Brighton vs Crystal Palace (Tuesday, 7:45pm)
It has been a decent few weeks for these two teams. Brighton were unbeaten in five prior to their trip to Old Trafford on Saturday, and while they left empty-handed following a 0-1 defeat, it’s fair to say they deserved something from the game; even that bastion of own-team bias, Jose Mourinho, admitted as much.
If we look at Crystal Palace’s form – W2 D2 L2 – we see a team in much improved shape. Those two defeats were both 0-1 affairs too, so the Eagles can say they have held their own for the past six matches; not something they could admit to earlier in the season.
So how do we separate these two sides on Tuesday then? Maybe we don’t have to: let’s give the goals markets a look.
Four of Brighton’s last five home matches have witnessed both teams scoring, and while Palace are yet to find the net on the road, remember most of those outings came prior to Roy Hodgson’s reign (and his last was at Wembley against Spurs). Otherwise, the Eagles have bagged eight goals in their last four home outings, and this is a side who are really starting to spread their wings in an attacking sense.
Both Teams to Score (11/10 with Betfair)
Leicester City vs Tottenham (Tuesday, 7:45pm)
Tottenham have taken just four points from a possible twelve in the Premier League of late, and there is no coincidence that their defeat to Arsenal and draw with West Brom came in the wake of the absence of Toby Alderweireld.
The Belgian centre back is an integral part of the way in which Spurs play, and the manner in which Arsenal got around the back so easily – and how simple it was for Solomon Rondon to barge Davinson Sanchez off the ball for his goal on Saturday – suggests Alderweireld is as important to this Tottenham side as anybody else.
The last time Mauricio Pochettino’s men visited the King Power Stadium it ended 6-1 in their favour, and while we’re expecting a closer contest this time that lineage of BTTS cannot be ignored. A whopping 13 of the last 15 meetings between the sides have witnessed both find the net, so we’re happy to follow that in again with Spurs looking fragile defensively.
Both Teams to Score (4/5 with Betfred)
West Brom vs Newcastle United (Tuesday, 8pm)
It was very much back to basics for West Brom in the 1-1 draw with Spurs, and they displayed many of their best qualities that had gone missing toards the end of Tony Pulis’ reign.
The Baggies were dogged defensively, got stuck in in midfield and surprisingly looked quite virile on the counter attack.
They should have confidence then, because Tuesday’s opponents Newcastle are devoid of it. They have played better than four straight defeats sounds, but it’s no coincidence that those losses have come at the same time as injuries suffered by captain Jamaal Lascelles and Christian Atsu, their brightest attacking spark.
This could be the time for West Brom to bag their first win in a long time.
West Brom to Win (29/20 with bet365)