Manchester City versus Chelsea (Saturday, 12.30)
Following consecutive defeats by Liverpool and Arsenal in September, the switch to a 3-4-3 formation was a stroke of genius by Chelsea boss Antonio Conte. The Blues have won their last seven matches in the Premier League, scoring 19 goals and conceding just one, and are in the best possible form ahead of their trip to the Etihad Stadium on Saturday lunchtime. Manchester City are unbeaten at home this season, having scored at least once in all six home matches, but have managed just one clean sheet. Sergio Aguero remains in fine goal-scoring form for the Sky Blues so, in a (hopefully) exciting encounter, let’s try Aguero to score the first goal and Chelsea to win 2-1 at 33/1 with BetVictor.
Selection: Sergio Aguero/Chelsea 2-1 (33/1 with Bet Victor)
Chelsea versus Tottenham Hotspur, Saturday, November 26
Since a harrowing 3-0 defeat by Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium at the end of September, Chelsea have won all six Premier League matches, scoring 17 goals and conceding none. Blues’ boss Antonio switched to a 3-4-3 formation for the game against Hull City at the KCOM Stadium and his side hasn’t looked back, with Victor Moses, in particular, enjoying a new lease of life at right wing-back. Back-to-back matches against Tottenham and Manchester City will test the Blues’ resilience, but they could be playing the Lilywhites at the right time.
Tottenham have the not insignificant distraction of a crucial Champions’ League against Monaco at the Stade Louis II on Tuesday, which could see them eliminated from the competition if they fail to win. Spurs’ boss Mauricio Pochettino was due to make late decisions on the fitness of Harry Kane, Delle Alli and Moussa Dembele and may be forced into changes of personnel on Saturday. In any case, Chelsea are on the crest of a wave at present so, with home advantage, let’s try the Blues to win 2-0 at 17/2 with bet365.
Selection: Chelsea to win 2-0 (17/2 with bet365)
Manchester United versus Arsenal, Saturday, November 19
Arsenal missed their previous chance of leading the Premier League at home to Tottenham a fortnight ago, but have another shot at doing so, at least for a few hours, at Old Trafford on Saturday. The Gunners lost to Liverpool by the odd goal in a seven-goal thriller at the Emirates Stadium on the opening weekend of the season, but are unbeaten since and have scored 12 goals in five away games, while conceding just three. The Red Devils have been beaten just once in five Premier League home games this season, going down 1-2 in the Manchester Derby, but manager Jose Mourinho has exhibited distinct signs of uneasiness in recent weeks.
The ‘Special One’ was charged with misconduct and fined £50,000 over comments he made about referee Anthony Taylor prior to the game against Liverpool at Anfield and was sent to the Old Trafford stands by Mark Clattenberg during the 0-0 with Burnley after an altercation in or around the tunnel area at half-time. He served a touchline ban against Swansea and was fined a further £8,000 for the latter offence. More recently, he has expressed his dismay at the culture he has inherited at Old Trafford,
Gunners boss Arsene Wenger has urged Chile not to risk striker Alexis Sanchez, who picked up a low grade muscle injury on international duty, in their World Cup qualifier against Uruguay on Tuesday but, with or without the 27-year-old, Arsenal are probably playing United at just the right time. Recent form suggests that the respective defences will have the upper hand, though, so let’s try a 1-1 draw at 6/1 with William Hill.
Selection: 1-1 Draw (6/1 with William Hill)
Chelsea versus Everton, Saturday, November 5
Four wins, and four clean sheets, in a row, including dominant displays against Manchester United and Leicester City at Stamford Bridge, have left Chelsea just a point off the top of the Premier League table. A change in formation, to include three centre-backs, has secured the Blues’ erstwhile suspect defence, while star midfielder Eden Hazard appears to have regained his confidence and has already scored one more goal than he did last season. In fact, the Blues have exactly double the number of points they had at the same stage last season and, in their current mood, should be too hot for sixth-placed Everton in the evening kick-off on Saturday.
Everton managed to maintain their unbeaten record at home with a scrappy 2-0 victory over West Ham last Sunday, but their recent away form is a major cause for concern. The Toffees were completely outplayed by Bournemouth, needed goalkeeping heroics from
Maarten Stekelenburg to salvage a point at Manchester City and lost against Burnley despite dominating possession and territory.
Chelsea have scored 11 goals in their last four games, so let’s try a sporting wager on a 3-0 home win at 12/1 with bet365.
Selection: Chelsea to win 3-0 (12/1 with bet365)