Opta Stats: West Brom to stay sat on their lofty perch

West Brom celebrate after scoring against Chelsea last weekend
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Christian Crowther enlists the Opta stats for help picking out four juicy bets for the weekend's Premier League action...

"West Brom have won four and lost none of the last five Premier League matches against Sunderland."
Recommended Bet: Back West Brom to beat Sunderland @ [3.05]

Sunderland v West Brom (Saturday, 12:45, Sky Sports 2)
West Brom have won four and lost none of the last five Premier League matches against Sunderland
When West Brom visit the Stadium of Light on Saturday lunchtime, they will start a full 11 places and 11 points in front of Sunderland. Under Steve Clarke, the Baggies are really flourishing and it's no accident that they proudly sit in the fourth Champions League spot at present. With their first away win in the bag against Wigan, anything seems possible for the midlanders at present. Sunderland have struggled at home and don't make strong bubble-bursting candidates. 
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Stoke v Fulham (Saturday, 15:00)
The Potters have conceded just one goal and kept four clean sheets in their last five Premier League games at the Britannia Stadium
As this stat suggests, Stoke are very hard to beat. The Potters are robust in defence (some would say a little too physical), but you have to give Tony Pulis credit for his organisational skills in a league which can constantly catch you out. The only problem this season has been marrying this sturdiness with an ability to put the ball in the net at the other end, averaging only 0.83 a game.
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Aston Villa v Arsenal (Saturday, 17:30, ESPN)
There has been a goal scored in the 87th minute or later in seven of the last nine Premier League games between Arsenal and Villa
Aston Villa have a terrible home record against Arsenal - losing seven and drawing six of their last 13 games - although a valiant recent display against Manchester United at Villa Park should instil some belief. There were five goals that day, four of which came in the second half. Villa's 5-0 hammering at the Etihad also saw a four-goal second-half capitulation, with nine of Villa's last ten games featuring more action after the interval and likewise both strikes coming after the break in Arsenal's midweek Champions League clash with Montpellier. 
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Tottenham v West Ham (Sunday, 16:00)
Spurs have scored first in eight games this season, only WBA (9) have opened the score more often
Jermain Defoe is enjoying more starts under Andre Villas-Boas than probably any other manager in his two spells as a Tottenham player. This is largely down to his own brilliant form, scoring eight goals in his first 15 starts of the campaign. With Emmanuel Adebayor suspended for this clash, it's almost a certainty that Defoe will start against his former club, whom he has scored against in four of his last seven Premier League encounters for Spurs. 
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Recommended Bets:
Back West Brom to win at Sunderland @ [3.05]
Back Under 2.5 goals in Stoke v Fulham @ [1.84]
Back the second half to feature more goals in Aston Villa v Arsenal @ [2.2]
Back Jermain Defoe to score first against West Ham @ [5.7]

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