A tough start for Steve Bruce at St James' Park
BACK: Draw/Arsenal in the Half Time/Full Time market, Newcastle v Arsenal - 14:00 Sunday
It will be interesting to see what sort of reception Geordie, but also ex-Sunderland manager, Steve Bruce gets at St James' Park on Sunday. Regardless of that, he also has a tough start to his managerial reign at Newcastle United with a home game against Top Four candidate Arsenal. If the Gunners are to achieve that goal then they are going to have to improve on the road, where they only won seven of their 19 fixtures last season.
Since that incredible 4-4 draw at St James Park between the sides in 2011, out of the next seven meetings at the venue, six of them have been draws at the break. Only one of those six ended with the points shared. I think Newcastle may be able to keep it tight again until the break but ultimately the class of Arsenal will see them through.
The Champions may have to work for their victory
LAY: Man City -2.0 in the Asian Handicap market, West Ham v Man City - 12:30 Saturday
Despite the Citizens incredible season last year, they only managed to cover a -2 handicap on four of their 19 away days. Their opponents today were one of the sides to take a "hammering" (0-4) but the others were, Brighton (1-4) who only just survived and relegated Huddersfield (0-3) and Cardiff (0-5). I don't see the Hammers as relegation fodder this campaign so they may well be able to keep City's margin of victory down, ideally to a single goal but two goals would see this bet scratched.
That was the only game last season that West Ham lost at home by a margin larger than two goals and while I would prefer the lay price to be a little bit shorter, I still think there is value in taking it on at anything around 2.255/4.
Just two goalless games in 57 games at Turf Moor
TRADE: Back to Lay Goal Line +2.0 & +2.5 market, Burnley v Southampton - 15:00 Saturday
There may have only been two goalless draws at Turf Moor over the last three seasons, but when you look at when the home side has been priced between 2.89/5 and 2.915/8 over the same period (nine fixtures), there has been under 2.5 goals in eight of those games and only four goals were scored before the half time whistle across them all.
Prior to kick off, I will BACK Under +2.0 & +2.5 goals @ 2.01/1 for 2pts. Once matched, I will then place a LAY bet to go in play on the same market for 2pts to be matched should that market reach 1.51/2.
If both trades are matched you should have a risk free bet on one goal or less (covering 0-0, 0-1 & 1-0) to win 1pt and a risk free bet on exactly two goals (covering 2-0, 1-1, 0-2) for half a point. Three goals before the LAY bet is matched is of course a 2pt loss.