The first round of the English Premier League will close out with the clashes between Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur, and the Manchester United FC hosting West Ham United. Check out this two match preview for some free betting picks.
NEWCASTLE UNITED vs. TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR
3-Way: 1: Newcastle United +450; X: +309 Draw; 2: Tottenham Hotspur -133
Spread +0.5: Newcastle United +133; Tottenham Hotspur -141
Total +2.5: Over -114; Under +108
Rafa Benítez ensured that Newcastle bounced straight back from the disappointment of relegation by winning the Championship (and returning to the top tier), and the Spanish manager will relish the opportunity to make strides at the Premier League once more with the Magpies.
Christian Atsu has joined the club permanently from Chelsea, having spent the 2016-17 season on loan at St James’ Park, while Javier Manquillo signed from Atlético Madrid, giving Newcastle United a major boost.
Ayoze Pérez scored nine goals and provided six more in his club’s Championship-winning campaign.The 24-yearold forward has been a key member of the team since arriving from Tenerife three years ago, scoring his fair share of goals.
Newcastle has won only one opening match across their last nine league seasons (D4 L4), but that came against Tottenham Hotspur, 2:1, in 2012. Benítez has not lost any of his previous eight English Premier League home matches against the Spurs (W5 D3 L0).
Survival will be the main aim, but the lineup is certainly strong enough to set their sights higher.
In the last two seasons, Mauricio Pochettino’s men were denied the English Premier League glory by Leicester and Chelsea, so they will be desperate to finally make it over the line to clinch their first title since 1961. However, they could be hindered by playing games at Wembley rather than White Hart Lane, as they prepare to transition to a new stadium next season.
Tottenham has not made any new signings, and they head into the new English Premier League campaign ostensibly weakened by the loss of Kyle Walker to Manchester City. Nevertheless, the north London outfit possesses a formidable squad, with players such as Harry Kane, Dele Alli, Christian Eriksen, and Son Heung-Min combining to create one of the most effective attacking units in Europe.
The Spurs boast the best striker in the English Premier League in Kane and, needless to say, he will be key to their ambitions of winning the league. The 24-year old claimed the Golden Boot in the last two campaigns, and did so last time despite missing a number of weeks with an ankle injury. Kane has scored 20 goals in his last 15 English Premier League matches against promoted sides. He is, however, yet to score a PL goal in August.
Hugo Lloris is one of the top three goalkeepers of the league. He is supported in what is probably the best defensive line in the English Premier League last season with Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen making good music together, with Victor Wanyama and Mousa Dembélé doing the same further up the field. Danny Rose was stellar last season with Ben Davies providing support at the left flank. Kieran Trippier will be on the other side of the pitch.
NEWCASTLE UNITED vs. TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR– Match Prediction
There have been 14 goals scored in the last three English Premier League meetings between these two clubs at St James’ Park, including a 5:1 win for Newcastle in May 2016. In their head-to-head matchups, Newcastle leads with 21 wins, 12 of which came at home. In contrast, the Spurs have 17 victories in all, five of which are away. They also have 6 draws between themselves.
Tottenham might be the bigger and more successful club, but that does not mean that Newcastle is a minnow. Aside from Benítez providing credibility to his club, the Magpies are the Spurs’ foil. Still, my safe bet would go on the over 2.5 goals, offered at -114.
MY PICK: Over 2.5 goals (-114)
MANCHESTER UNITED vs. WEST HAM UNITED
3-Way: 1: Manchester United -303; X: +490 Draw; 2: West Ham United +1200
Spread -1.5: Manchester United -103; West Ham United +106
Total +2.5: Over -132; Under +131
José Mourinho may have guided Manchester United to League Cup and Europa League glory in his first year on the club, but the Portuguese will be far from content with his side’s league finish last season. While they boasted one of the best defenses in the division, the Red Devils lacked ruthlessness in front of goal and struggled to turn draws into wins. To address this, Mourinho brought in the likes of Romelu Lukaku and Nemanja Matić as he looks to steer the club to their first English Premier League title since 2013.
Going back to the club’s defense, David de Gea reigns supreme as the best between the sticks in England, while Antonio Valencia should continue to motor along in his mechanical, unstoppable way. In addition, Matteo Darmian and Daley Blind provide a potent partnership on the left side of the pitch with Eric Bailly holding the fort on his side.
Paul Pogba should enjoy a far better second season than first—not that he was as bad as some made out in 2016-17. The French international scored nine goals in all competitions, but he did not dictate games in a manner befitting the world’s most expensive player and fans were left somewhat disappointed by his overall contribution. Now divested of the ‘world’s most expensive player’ tag by Neymar, and with Matić in place behind him, he can be unleashed to full effect. Adding support up front and in the wings are Juan Mata, Anthony Martial, Henrikh Mkhitaryan.
No team has won more opening day fixtures at the English Premier League than this club (16, level with Chelsea). Mou has never lost a home match on a Sunday in all competitions in his managerial career (W86 D26).Having enjoyed a successful preseason, United will aim to hit the ground running.
WEST HAM UNITED
Slaven Bilić came under a lot of pressure last season, and the Croatian will be keen to answer his critics by exceeding expectations in 2017-18. To that end, he has brought in a clutch of players who can help propel the Hammers on towards a European finish. Joe Hart has arrived on loan from Manchester City, while Pablo Zabaleta also moved south from the Etihad. The club forked out 20 million GBP for Austrian international Marko Arnautović from Stoke.
Bilić also landed former Manchester United and Real Madrid striker Javier “Chicharito” Hernández, adding a proven goalscorer to his ranks. At the age of 29, he still has plenty to offer at the English top level. Hernández hit double figures in his first three seasons at Man Utd before falling out of favour. He then continued to find the back of the net during spells at La Liga and Bundesliga.
Hart could become the first away goalkeeper to keep three English Premier League clean sheets at Old Trafford, having previously kept two with Manchester City in March 2014 and October 2015.
MANCHESTER UNITED vs. WEST HAM UNITED – Match Prediction
Man Utd are unbeaten in their last nine English Premier League home matches versus West Ham United (W7 D2 L0). MUFC leads their all-time H2H as well, 25-5. What is worth taking note of is the 11 draws they share with each other. Last season, the Red Devils had one win and a draw. However, this one should not be even close to a draw as I expect the red devils to make a statement win right away and fire away from all angles. Go with the over in this one with a possible AH win for the home team.
MY PICK: Over 2.5 goals (-132)
Additional Pick: Man Utd AH -1.5 win (-103)
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