Chelsea succumbed to a rare defeat last weekend, as Crystal Palace ran out surprise 2-1 winners at Stamford Bridge. It was a result that gave the likes of Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City renewed hope of overhauling the Blues at the summit of the standings.
Still, the west Londoners maintain a comfortable cushion above second spot at the time of writing. I expect them to get back on track when they head to the south coast to lock horns with Bournemouth in gameweek 32 – an away win to nil at the Vitality Stadium is offered at odds of 2.60.
My betting tip: Chelsea to beat Bournemouth.
Tottenham look like the team best-placed to take advantage of any potential Chelsea wobble, and they should have a rather straightforward afternoon in store when they welcome Watford to White Hart Lane in the early kick-off on Saturday. The Hornets have had a decent season and are now almost certainly safe from the threat of relegation following their defeat of Sunderland last Saturday, but Spurs are simply on another level and are particularly strong in front of their own supporters. It’s hard to look past a home victory to nil here – you can find that particular wager in the sportsbook at a price of 1.98.
My betting tip: Tottenham to beat Watford.
Liverpool picked up a vital three points at Anfield last weekend, when local rivals Everton were beaten by three goals to one. The Reds have a favourable run-in compared to many of their competitors for the top four, although it is worth bearing in mind that they have often struggled in matches against teams in eighth place or below. I reckon they will get the job done in Staffordshire this weekend, though: I’d recommend putting some money on Liverpool winning a match ending 1-3 at a potential payout of 13.50 times the wager.
My betting tip: Liverpool to beat Stoke.
Manchester City have had to contend with two tough trips to London in recent days, taking on Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium and Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in successive encounters. Hull will provide the opposition when they return to the Etihad Stadium, when anything other than a comfortable home triumph would come as a major surprise. Given that there is little value to be had in simply backing City to come out on top, my betting tip here is a 3-0 success in the correct scoreline market – that’s available in the sportsbook at odds of 6.85.
My betting tip: Manchester City to beat Hull.
Elsewhere, Manchester United should keep the heat on those teams above them by beating Sunderland, who are surely doomed to relegation to the Championship after several near-misses in the last few seasons. The Black Cats have been poor for most of the campaign, and I quite fancy United to win a game featuring than fewer than 2.5 goals.
Arsenal may not find things so easy against a resurgent Crystal Palace outfit, however: the Gunners have an excellent record against the south Londoners since their promotion in 2013, but this one could end with the scores level. A draw with both teams to find the back of the net once fetches odds of 7.45 in the sportsbook.
By Greg Lea
Greg Lea is a freelance football writer for The National, FourFourTwo, The Blizzard and others. Follow his Twitter account @GregLeaFootball for anything and everything related to soccer and more.