Premier League Tips: Back These Midfielders To Shine On The Big Stage

Premier League Tips: Back These Midfielders To Shine On The Big Stage

The Easter weekend offers up some mouth-watering Premier League clashes but betting value is harder to find. After a recent return to profit LB shares his best bets across the EPL this weekend. 

Arsenal head to Manchester to take on City in the final remaining title race six-pointer in Europe. The Serie A is all but over (Inter have a 14-point cushion), Madrid are on the home straight (10 points clear), Ligue 1 was over before it started and Leverkusen do not play Beyern again this season. The Premier League is enjoying a three-way title race with Arsenal, Liverpool and City separated by just one point and this will be the last time any of these sides meet this term. It also looks like a gift for headline writers with Jesus looking to mark his return – to The Ethiad – on Easter Sunday.

Nottingham Forest v Crystal Palace

Sat 30 Mar 15:00

This is a straightforward goals bet. Neither of these teams offers much in terms of defending with just one clean sheet in each of their last nine outings. Similarly, both like to “have a go” especially against similar mid-table opposition. Very few Premier League games this season warrant an odds-against price for Over 2.5 goals so I’ll gladly back this one at 11/10. Forest are now back in the relegation zone after a points deduction and will have no choice but to play for the win. Palace look to be heading in the right direction under Oliver Glasner and I expect an end-to-end game.

Tottenham v Luton Town

Sat 30 Mar 15:00

Spurs are heavily odds on here and it is hard to see past a home win. However, Tottenham cannot keep clean sheets and have managed just two in their last 19 league games. Tottenham and BTTS seems the most likely outcome but at 11/10 it’s not worth it. The handicap market is equally unappealing with Spurs -2 offered at a meagre 13/10. So instead I will turn my attention to the Shots On Target market. Unsurprisingly the Tottenham players offer little value here either. However, Ross Barkley for Luton looks considerably overpriced. The English midfielder is enjoying a purple patch and has managed 6 SOT in his last 6 games (from 15 shots). He is the sort of player who shows up in big games for Luton and considering how porous Tottenham are under “Big Ange” I’m happy to take a punt. He is a solid 6/5 for 1+ SOT but the 7/1 available for 2+ SOT looks fantastic.

Manchester City v Arsenal

Sun 31 Mar 16:30

My gut instinct (read, personal bias) tells me that Arsenal are a good price here at 3/1. Arteta’s side have come out on top the last two times they played City and were quite unlucky not to beat them twice last term. Guardiola’s side are rumored to be without a host of key defenders including Stones, Walker and Akanji, and Kevin De Bruyne is also at risk of missing the game. Even at full health, Pep’s side have been limping through games recently. They scraped draws against Chelsea and Liverpool last month and could have lost both games had their opponents boasted even a mediocre goal threat. Two single goals wins over Brentford and Bournemouth did not impress much either. Arsenal are wrongly considered incapable of beating top teams, that is mostly a throwback to the late Wenger era. Since Arteta took over Arsenal have the second-best record versus The Big Six in the league, picking up just one point less than Man City in that time. I will have a small personal bet on an away win but my main angle is once again in the shots market.

Kai Havertz is in the form of his life, at least of the last three seasons. Most pundits scoffed at Arsenal for signing the German misfit and his initial bedding in at Arsenal was underwhelming. However, since the winter break, for all intents and purposes, he has been deployed as a centre forward. Arsenal have drastically increased the number of crosses they attempt and Havertz is the main target in the box. He has managed 9 SOT (and 4 goals) in his last six league games, from a lively 16 shots. He is even money for one SOT here, which again is reasonable, but the 6/1 for 2+ SOT is eye-catching.

Premier League Smart Betting

Nottingham Forest v Crystal Palace – Over 2.5 Goals @ 11/10

Tottenham v Luton Town – Ross Barkley 2+ SOT @ 7/1

Manchester City v Arsenal – Kai Havertz 2+ SOT @ 6/1

A treble of Over 2.5 Goals (Forest Palace), Barkley 1+ SOT and Havertz 1+ SOT is a little over 8/1 with B365 (0.5U).

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European Football Punter Extraordinaire. Although claiming to support Arsenal around The Accademics office, he is a football hipster at heart - just don’t tell him that! Happiest cheering on goals and upsets in the unloved Serie B and Belgian First Division A. Not to mention being a closeted college football fan. His biggest claim to fame is winning the New England College Rugby Champions at the lofty heights of varsity Division IV. The less vocal Grangee owner in the group. Loves to tip a midfielder for a shot on target.
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