Once again the former England striker shared his thoughts on the weekend games with BetVictor.
Spurs v Liverpool
Rarely has a managerial appointment been so well received with pundits and supporters alike and all Reds’ fans I have spoken to are excited about the arrival of Jurgen Klopp. Spurs are without Eric Dier through suspension and he has made an excellent start to the season. This looks too close to call but I expect to see goals as we welcome the new Liverpool manager to the Premier League.
Michael’s recommendation: Both teams to score at 4/6
Chelsea v Aston Villa
Villa have conceded 30 goals in their last eight PL games at the Bridge and Jose Mourinho has never lost back-to-back home games as a manager. On the face of it he couldn’t have hand-picked a better game although Villa have scored in their last nine away games! Expect the Champions to keep the points.
Michael’s recommendation: Chelsea half-time/full-time at 20/21
Crystal Palace v West Ham
Both sides have made excellent starts to the season and the guys at Opta say that the last time Palace had more points than they have now in a top-flight season was back in 1990-91 when they went on to finish third. The Irons have yet to lose on the road this season but this is a very good Eagles’ side and I feel they can keep all three points.
Michael’s recommendation: Palace to win at Evens
Everton v Manchester United
The Blues have beaten United the last three times the sides have met in the PL at Goodison and I am surprised to see them outsiders in the betting. I have watched the majority of United’s games so far this season and am still not convinced by Louis van Gaal’s side although I have been impressed by Anthony Martial. Everton look the value.
Michael’s recommendation: Everton to win at 23/10
Manchester City v Bournemouth
City must do without Sergio Aguero but they have never lost against the Cherries and I can’t see past a comprehensive home win.
Michael’s recommendation: City -1.5 on the Asian Handicap at 42/41
Southampton v Leicester City
Jamie Vardy has scored in his last five PL games and only three Englishmen I am reliably informed have scored in six consecutive PL games this century. The others were James Beattie (2003), Daniel Sturridge (2014): can you name the third?
I always think there will be goals when the Foxes play and that is the recommendation.
Michael’s recommendation: Over 2.5 goals at 4/5
WBA v Sunderland
Sam Allardyce returns to PL management with Sunderland and the former West Ham boss will be looking to keep things tight at the Hawthorns in a game which is not likely to throw up many goals.
Michael’s recommendation: Under 1.5 goals at 15/8
Watford v Arsenal
The Hornets are no pushover at Vicarage Road but with Alexis Sanchez back to his best I expect Arsenal to take all three points in this London Derby.
Michael’s recommendation: Arsenal to win to nil at 19/10
Newcastle v Norwich
The Canaries have never won at St James’s Park in the PL and are yet to keep a clean sheet so far this season but I expect them to take a point against the Magpies. Steve McClaren would dearly love to get that first win of the season but he may have to settle for another draw.
Michael’s recommendation: Draw at 5/2
Swansea v Stoke
Six of the last eight PL games between the sides have been won by the home side and I expect that tend to continue at the Liberty Stadium. Since Swansea were promoted to the PL Ashley Williams has played more minutes than any other player and his consistency and captaincy have been pivotal for both Club and country.
I would like to congratulate Wales, and of course Northern Ireland on reaching the Euro Finals in France next year. It will be great to have three Home Nations involved and let’s hope the Republic can make it through via the play-offs.
Michael’s recommendation: Swansea to win at 21/20
Just in case you’re interested the third Englishman above to score in six successive PL games was a certain Michael Owen back in 2003!
Michael’s weekend treble: Everton, City and Chelsea at 5/1