The Premier League is well underway and with over a quarter of the season gone, we’re starting to see a clearer picture of team capability and how the table may shape up at the business end of the season. Some of the early pretenders have fallen away, but a few of the less fancied clubs remain towards the top of the table. The pre-season favourites are yet to show their full capabilities with Manchester City still in the bottom half of the table and Liverpool struggling to brush teams aside with the same guile as last term.
With Premier League fixtures more unpredictable than ever, there’s been some real value in backing underdogs this campaign. Match day 12 provides some compelling fixtures, with the Manchester derby headlining a stellar weekend. Manchester United find themselves 31/10 outsiders for the win at Old Trafford with Marathonbet, and they’ve got a real chance to upset the odds in this round of premier league betting.
Match day 12 involves one of the historically biggest ties of the Premier League in the Manchester Derby. This is usually a high stakes, top of the table fixture which has great impact on title chasing sides, but this season sees both teams outside of the European qualification places and both in need of consistent form to elevate them into contention.
In the 182 meetings between the sides, United have come out on top more than their sky-blue rivals, winning 76 of the matches. More importantly than that, the Red Devils also came out victors the last time they met, securing a 2-0 win at Old Trafford.
In recent years it’s been City who have finished higher in the league and gained the Manchester bragging rights. This season has a different feel though and Guardiola’s side are lacking the clinical edge which was displayed in abundance in last year’s 102 goal-laden campaign.
The Citizens are also conceding more than last season, letting in more than a goal per game. Whilst this isn’t dramatically more than their last campaign, it’s having a big impact as the struggle to convert chances means City have drawn three of their opening nine fixtures. Guardiola has been coy on his team selection for the contest, insisting that it’ll depends on many factors and that the team need to focus on all fixtures, not just the derby.
Battle of the Blues
Another stellar fixture in this weekend’s schedule is the battle of the Blues, Everton and Chelsea.
Despite topping the table four weeks in, Everton have hit a slump in form and lost four of their last five fixtures. Early season wins buoyed the Goodison Park faithful, and the fans must have thought their side had finally turned a corner when cultured forward James Rodriguez began to produce wizardry previously unseen by The Toffees. After some flashes of brilliance, Rodriguez and the club have stalled in their quest for European qualification and are trying to rediscover the form which took them to the summit of the competition.
Conversely Chelsea are unbeaten in their last five fixtures and top Champions League Group E with increasingly impressive performances. Frank Lampard’s side are scoring goals for fun at the moment, and even reserve striker Olivier Giroud is contributing as he became the first Chelsea player to score four goals in a Champions League game. Hopefully, he can continue his goalscoring streak for the national side as he looks to overcome Thierry Henry’s record in Euro 2020.
More importantly for Chelsea than their goal glut is their defensive unit. Under Jose Mourinho, Chelsea developed a reputation for an impenetrable defence, but this has faltered in recent years.
Investing in veteran centre back Thiago Silva has been a masterstroke from Lampard, and the Brazilian has brought a steel and confidence back to the Chelsea ranks. As a result of this tight defence and potent attack, Chelsea have the best goal difference in the Premier League. At 43/25 with Marathonbet, Chelsea to win and over 2.5 total goals is an attractive price based on the form this side are showing.