Oh dear. That’s the best way to describe our return of -£17.15 last week. Has the bubble burst? Or are we to expect the occasional bad week when predicting outcomes in such a way? Perhaps we have regressed to the mean….
With two weeks of the Premier League season left, we shall see this experiment through to the bitter end. If our maths are correct, we remain in profit for the past six weeks or so (we’ll do the totting up in time for next week’s column), so we must persevere until our data set is large enough to make some evidence-based conclusions.
Anyway, here’s an overview of last week’s results:
- Everton vs Bournemouth – Both Teams to Score (+£7.85)
- Newcastle vs Crystal Palace – The Draw (-£5)
- Stoke vs Sunderland – Both Teams to Score (No) & Under 2.5 Goals (-£5)
- Watford vs Aston Villa – Under 2.5 Goals (-£5)
- West Brom vs West Ham – The Draw (-£5)
- Arsenal vs Norwich – Arsenal -1 Handicap (-£5)
It perhaps isn’t as rough as it looks. A draw in the Newcastle/Crystal Palace match would have been a fair result, there were under 2.5 goals in the Stoke/Sunderland encounter and Arsenal had enough chances to score four or five against Norwich. We must not lose our bottle just yet with this.
So, onwards we go. Here is the form table as it appears this week:
So, how are this week’s fixtures shaping up?
Norwich vs Man Utd
A surprisingly agreeable price for a match that has limited goals written all over it. Sure, Norwich need to win, but they will presumably realise that their best chance of doing so will be to keep the game tight and strike late. Manchester United are scoring at 1.00 goal per game and conceding at 0.66. The Canaries are scoring at 0.66 and conceding at 1.17 per match. Thus, it would be a statistical anomaly if this selection doesn’t come in.
Under 2.5 Goals at 4/5 (£5 returns £9)
Aston Villa vs Newcastle
The Aston Villa loss bandwagon rolled on against Watford last week when really they should have taken a point home to Birmingham. As you can see from the form table, Newcastle have improved under Rafa Benitez, and with Villa conceding at 2.50 per game – and the Magpies desperate to win – that should serve up a cocktail of goals.
Over 2.5 Goals at 17/20 (£5 returns £9.25)
Bournemouth v West Brom
Two teams that are struggling at the moment (according to the form guide anyway) and with nothing to play for; always a tough situation to predict. This pair have lost a combined nine of their last dozen outings, and while the Cherries have been particularly generous defensively the Baggies’ forwards have notched just two in their last six. We need a different angle here….and how about Callum Wilson in the Anytime Scorer market? He looked lively last week against Everton, created a goal and should have had a penalty, and the striker appears to be back to full fitness.
Callum Wilson Anytime Scorer at 11/10 (£5 returns £10.50)
Crystal Palace vs Stoke
Another two team lacking that all-important ‘motivation factor’ as the season stumbles to a close, the good news is that the Palace players will be dying to impress Alan Pardew to ensure they are selected for the FA Cup final. But they’ve only won one of six, so we’re not sold by the Eagles at the moment. Stoke, meanwhile, appear to be on their holidays already, with the division’s worst defensive record (according to the form table) matched by a meagre attack. Both teams to score remains the logical bet though: the Potters are conceding at 2.50 per game while Palace conceded at 1.00 and Stoke breach their opponents at the same mark.
Both Teams to Score at 10/11 (£5 returns £9.54)
Sunderland vs Chelsea
Just a solitary point separates these two sides in the form table, and the division’s draw specialists Sunderland will be happy with a point against an inconsistent Chelsea side. Let’s back them to achieve just that.
The Draw at 5/2 (£5 returns £17.50)
West Ham vs Swansea
Goals….that’s the simple equation here. West Ham are scoring at 2.50 per game at the moment and conceding at 1.67. Swansea meanwhile are penetrating their opponents with 1.17 goals per game and conceding at 1.67. So all roads lead to our selection here.
Over 2.5 Goals and Both Teams to Score at 6/5 (£5 returns £11)
Leicester vs Everton
The form table may let us down here, given that Leicester – crowned champions on Monday night – appear to have enjoyed a rather celebratory few days in the interim. Everton are scrapping for their lives under Roberto Martinez. Intriguingly, only four of this pair’s combined last 12 matches has gone Over 2.5 Goals, so we’ll side with the unders in what appears to be an ‘after the Lord Mayor’s show’ kind of fixture.
Under 2.5 Goals at 13/10 (£5 returns £11.50)