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International breaks are the worst. Thankfully, it’s over, and there’s only one more left in 2019.
Meanwhile, Matchday 8 feels like ages ago, but it was another profitable one, taking us to 13-12 (+$1,205) on the season. That number should continue to climb as we head into another weekend of Premier League action.
|Everton (-110)||Draw (+240)||West Ham (+265)|
|Aston Villa (+130)||Draw (+235)||Brighton (+170)|
|Bournemouth (-145)||Draw (+290)||Norwich City (+300)|
|Chelsea (-345)||Draw (+425)||Newcastle (+820)|
|Leicester (-210)||Draw (+300)||Burnley (+525)|
|Tottenham (-245)||Draw (+350)||Watford (+580)|
|Wolverhampton (-130)||Draw (+245)||Southampton (+325)|
|Crystal Palace (+925)||Draw (+485)||Manchester City (-440)|
|Manchester United (+325)||Draw (+275)||Liverpool (-140)|
|Sheffield United (+265)||Draw (+250)||Arsenal (-115)|
West Ham (+265) at Everton (-110), Draw (+240)
The first game back from the international break could be the last for Marco Silva as Everton manager. The Toffees sit in the relegation zone after four successive defeats, and they’ll be desperate to stop the bleeding. But getting back to winning ways feels rather ambitious here given West Ham’s form.
The Hammers have been really strong this season under Manuel Pellegrini, and they pose a real threat on the front foot. That’s problematic for Everton given how frequently they’ve conceded goals. And all the pressure is on the Toffees, who will want to win but must avoid another loss. While fans will hate it, that line of thinking should lead to some conservative play. A draw is the likeliest outcome, and you get the sense that Silva would gladly accept a point right now.
Pick: Draw (+240)
Brighton (+170) at Aston Villa (+130), Draw (+235)
Both sides went into the break following impressive victories – Aston Villa put five past Norwich while Brighton shocked Spurs at the Amex – and they’re in direct competition in a potential relegation scrap, though neither has looked the part so far this season.
Villa are delightful to watch when they go forward and appear to be ticking on nicely under Dean Smith. Graham Potter has Brighton playing attractive football as well, but their away form is still a bit of a concern; the Seagulls haven’t scored on their travels since the opening day of the season. Villa were unlucky not to beat Burnley in their last home match, but their boldness should be rewarded on Saturday with three points.
Pick: Aston Villa (+130)
Liverpool (-140) at Manchester United (+325), Draw (+275)
This isn’t a bad run of form for Manchester United, but rather a realistic string of results based on the quality of their side. They have no creativity in the team and are bereft of ideas in possession. Quite simply, they’re likelier to be in a relegation scrap than to challenge for a top-four spot this season.
Liverpool, meanwhile, can’t help themselves at the moment. The Reds have claimed maximum points through eight matches and own a comfortable lead at the Premier League summit. All signs point to a victory here … but this is just one of those fixtures.
More specifically, there’s something about Old Trafford that pulls the Reds out of character, as they haven’t won any of their last six trips there. Denying Liverpool another victory could be exactly what United need to spark a bit of belief in their side. There’s nothing their fans would want more, either.
It won’t be pretty, but United should get a result here. And if they can’t get up for a match against their bitter rivals, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer should be relieved of his duties before he leaves the stadium.
Pick: Draw (+275)
Arsenal (-115) at Sheffield United (+265), Draw (+250)
Sheffield United are in the bottom half of the table with nine points from eight matches, but their start to the season has felt a lot better than that, hasn’t it? Chris Wilder is starting to get the respect he’s long deserved as a tactician, and his club is playing some really impressive football.
The Blades like to play on the front foot, and they will find some openings against an Arsenal defense that concedes in bunches. The Gunners have struggled to win away from home and, with a raucous atmosphere expected Monday night at Bramall Lane, it’s hard to see them leaving Sheffield with all three points.
Pick: Draw (+250)
Alex Moretto is a sports betting writer for theScore. A journalism graduate from Guelph-Humber University, he has worked in sports media for over a decade. He will bet on anything from the Super Bowl to amateur soccer, is too impatient for futures, and will never trust a kicker. Find him on Twitter @alexjmoretto.