Manchester United and Arsenal kick-off a sensational six hours of top class action on Sunday from around Europe. Lewis Jones has some in-play intelligence to profit from...
"No side has won more points from losing positions than Manchester United in the Premier League this season (6) and this follows on from last term where United won 29 points from losing positions."
The shops know it. The idiot with his lights up already knows it. Christmas is coming. You can't hide away from it.
You'll need to start planning those pointless gifts for the in-laws and venture head first into the loft to dig out those crummy decorations that you can never be bothered to replace. With Christmas' impending arrival, clubs are doing some planning of their own. Ones that have title aspirations are approaching a critical stage, where maintaining their form up until Santa pops down the chimney gives the indication that they can officially be declared as title contenders.
This weekend, three of those teams, scattered over Europe's three major leagues have to manoeuver past awkward away checkpoints.
Those hoping to turn a profit after gobbling down those Sunday roasts should take note of some interesting in-play trends for these high-stake encounters.
Sunday 16:10, Manchester United v Arsenal, Sky Sports 1
There may be a new man in the dugout overseeing football matters at Old Trafford but one thing remains the same: Man Utd continue to successfully come from behind in matches to snatch points. No side has won more points from losing positions than the Red Devils in the Premier League this season (6) and this follows on from last term where United won 29 points from losing positions. This will be music to the ears of shrewd in-play punters who will be sitting tight waiting for Arsenal to race into a lead before moving in to strike on some juicy United odds. The inform Gunners are 3.39/4 to claim their first win at Old Trafford since 2006, with the hosts 2.3811/8 to prevail.
Sunday, 18:00, Villarreal v Atletico Madrid, Sky Sports 1
Madrid brushed aside Austria Vienna 4-0 in the Champions League midweek, but face a much sterner test against a Villarreal side that have made a flying start to the campaign and sit in fourth position in La Liga. However, Diego Simeone's team have only lost once in their last 14 away games in the league and there'll be plenty of support for them at 2.1411/10.
For in-play purposes it may be worth laying the hosts pre-match safe in the knowledge that Atletico are the only team in La Liga that have not conceded a goal in the first 30 minutes of a match this season. When the 30 minutes are up, Villarreal's price will have soared, which gives punters plenty of opportunities to either cash out or let the lay ride.
Sunday, 19:45, Juventus v Napoli, BT Sport 1
Both these Italian big-hitters are coming off exhausting, end-to-end games in midweek in the Champions League. Juventus played out a corking 2-2 draw with Real Madrid while Napoli had too much firepower for Marseille in a 3-2 win. There will be tired legs in both camps, which could lead to some late goal mouth action. Incorporating this theory into an in-play bet for the result to change in the final 15 minutes looks a smart way to attack this market. The Serie A champions are 1.794/5 to win the game, with Napoli 5.59/2 to claim three points.