Another full programme of Premier League fixtures means another round of the Editors' Betting Battle. Dan Thomas holds a slender lead over Joe Dyer but can the chasers narrow the gap with their midweek selections...
"Palace under Pulis are a well organised unit and, on their last two trips to top six sides, at Arsenal and Tottenham, the Eagles kept a clean sheet in the first half, but eventually went down 2-0."
Back Draw/Everton in the Half Time/Full Time market in Everton v Crystal Palace at 4.77/2
I thought Unders in the south Wales derby was a guaranteed winner when the clock ticked past 75 minutes with the score at 1-0 but those two late Swansea goals killed off Cardiff - and my bet. So, I'm off in hunt for a bigger price in this midweek special and this bet at Goodison caught my eye.
Crystal Palace have been in superb form under Tony Pulis - surely manager of the year if the Eagles stay up - but they have picked up the majority of their points at Selhurst Park and have actually been pretty poor on the road, failing to score in seven of their 12 away league games this season.
Everton's home form, meanwhile, has been relentless, with the Toffees winning 15 and losing just one of their last 21 Premier League matches at Goodison.
It all points to a home win then but I'm not interested in backing 1.491/2 shots and so, to give us a more attractive price, it's the half time/full time market for my £10 this week. Palace under Pulis are a well organised unit and, on their last two trips to top six sides, at Arsenal and Tottenham, the Eagles kept a clean sheet in the first half, but eventually went down 2-0.
I can see a similar picture emerging on Wednesday especially as Everton can be slow starters - witness conceding to Villa last weekend before eventually turning the game around - while their game at Spurs on Sunday highlighted a lack of a cutting edge without Romelu Lukaku. Here's hoping for my biggest winner of the season!
Dan Thomas 2013-14 P/L: + £24.79
Back Under 2.5 Goals in West Ham v Norwich @ 1.910/11
Close but no cigar on with my weekend draw wager at White Hart Lane but I have no complaints about the bet - the game was as close as expected and took one moment of extreme skill to settle matters.
On to the midweek action and I can't understand the prices on unders in West Ham v Norwich so that is where I will concentrate my efforts in this midweek round of the Battle.
Neither team is prolific and both boast sound defences and yet that is not demonstrated in the odds where under 2.5 is 1.910/11, rather than the 1.75/7 or so that I expected.
Andy Carroll is suspended and Norwich's strikers are really struggling in front of goal - the Canaries have scored just three goals in Premier League games since the turn of the year - and I really think we'll see at least one clean sheet, and possibly two.
Norwich held out Manchester City on the weekend and you only have to go back to January 28 to find their previous goalless draw. West Ham, meanwhile, are on a run of three straight clean sheets.
My one concern is that both need a win so could play a little looser than usual but when the trend points so clearly towards a low-scoring affair I have to make that my bet - and if the liquidity in under 1.5 was a little better I may have made that my midweek wager.
Joe Dyer 2013-14 P/L: - £1.70
Back Chelsea Win to Nil @ 2.265/4 v West Brom
Chelsea are in sparkling form currently, winning 10 and drawing two of their last 12 league and cup games. Those two draws were courtesy of goalless encounters which means the Blues have conceded just three goals in their last dozen games.
It's not as if Jose Mourinho's men have had it easy either - they've faced top-half sides Arsenal, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Newcastle and Southampton in that time, and while they haven't been scoring for fun, their defensive performances have been outstanding with Gary Cahill in particular impressing.
The Baggies are yet to win under Pepe Mel so confidence is low, and while they've scored in each of their last four home league games (just a single goal in each however) it's difficult to see them causing the Blues too many problems at the Hawthorns on Tuesday night.
I fancy another Chelsea win here, and probably a low-scoring one so the 0-2 Correct Score at 7.87/1 definitely entered my thoughts for this week's selection. But instead I've decided to play it a tad safer by backing an away win to nil.
Mike Norman 2013-14 P/L: - £32.50
Back a West Ham clean sheet against Norwich at 2.962/1
When I was perusing the markets for a bet for Round 26, this price stuck out like a sore thumb. West Ham have recorded the most clean sheets in the Premier League this season with 12, and are fresh from two shutouts against Chelsea and then Aston Villa.
Norwich cannot score for love nor money, they're the second lowest scorers in the league with 19 and have managed just eight goals away from home all season. The Canaries have scored a paltry two goals in their last six Premier League games.
With West Ham also likely to welcome back Winston Reid into their rearguard, I think the home side will manage to be the thirteenth side to stop anyone from Norwich getting on the scoresheet.
Luke Moore 2013-14 P/L: - £97.90
A £10 bet is placed on each selection on Betfair's Exchange. Profits are calculated before commission.
Editors' Battle P/L
1. Dan Thomas: + £24.79
2. Joe Dyer: - £1.70
3. Mike Norman: - £32.50
4. Luke Moore: - £97.90