Everton will fancy their chances of beating Liverpool based on their respective starts to the season, with the Toffees available at a big price to win the tussle at Goodison Park, while the Red Devils defence seems to be in disarray at the moment and Chelsea have the players to make life difficult.
Everton v Liverpool 13:30
Everton have begun the season strongly and victory against their arch-rivals on Sunday will continue their average of two points per game since the season commenced. David Moyes has finally succeeded in ensuring that his team have enjoyed a fast start to the campaign and their form at Goodison Park has seen them beat Manchester United and Southampton, while they should really have done the same against Newcastle United before drawing 2-2.
With their opponents in Europa League action on Thursday, this looks to be the perfect time to be playing the Merseyside derby and while the home team will play down their favourites tag, odds of 7/4 (Stan James free bets) about a Toffees victory is hard to ignore considering they are playing better football than the Reds at the moment.
Liverpool stumbled past Reading last weekend for what was only their second Premier League win of the season and Brendan Rodgers now has a first taste of a Merseyside derby as manager, with the visitors having won at Norwich, drawn at Sunderland and lost at West Brom on the opening day of the season.
Perhaps the League Cup holders are starting to get their act together and they are 19/10 (BetVictor) to beat an Everton side who will be missing the suspended Steven Pienaar, although it appears that Marouane Fellaini will have recovered from injury in time to play in one of the biggest games of the season.
The other danger man for the home side is Nikica Jelavic who is as big as 7/1 to score the first goal of the game against a Liverpool defence that haven’t kept a clean sheet on the road this season, although Leighton Baines catches the eye at 18/1 considering the left-back loves to bomb forward and is also the designated penalty taker.
Luis Suarez is a player that the Gwlady Street faithful love to hate, although there’s no doubting the Uruguayan’s class and he scored a hat-trick during his last away game at Norwich, with 13/2 (Paddy Power) on offer that he scores first in this game.
Newcastle v West Brom 15:00
West Brom are still looking for their first away win of the season although four wins at The Hawthorns mean that the Baggies are a top six side going into the weekend action and this was a fixture in which they triumphed last term by a 3-2 scoreline.
Roy Hodgson seemed to get the best out of the Albion on the road, although Steve Clark has seen his team collect a point from matches at White Hart Lane and Villa Park, with a 3-0 defeat at West Brom being sandwiched in between. The match at St James’ Park looks a tough one although you can get the visitors at odds of 3/1 (Paddy Power free bets).
Newcastle are likely to be a popular bet at even money (Sky Bet bookmaker) having played pretty well to earn a point with ten men in the north-east derby last weekend and Alan Pardew rested several first team players for the visit of FC Bruges in the Europa League, with a lofty position in the Premier League a priority.
The Magpies have not quite caught fire in front of their own supporters this season although there’s little doubting the form of Demba Ba and he might enjoy himself in this game after chasing a lot of lost causes at the Stadium of Light. Coral offer a stand-out 11/2 that he scores the first goal of the match.
Southampton v Tottenham Hotspur 15:00
Alan Pardew and Brendan Rodgers have been largely reluctant to field first-team players in the Europa League, although Andre Villas-Boas continues to select strong teams in Europe and perhaps it will come back to haunt him.
The Portuguese manager saw his Spurs team draw 1-1 in Maribor on Thursday night and have little recovery time before heading to St Mary’s to face a Southampton team who have a very leaky defence at the moment but also have the ability to score goals.
The Saints are as big as 16/5 (bet365 £200 free bets) to claim a precious three points which would help them out of the relegation zone and they did get things right when beating Aston Villa 4-1. They were also twice ahead against Manchester United before losing 3-2 although this is a defence conceding an average of three goals per Premier League game.
Tottenham certainly have the players to take advantage of gaps at the back, with Gareth Bale likely to return from paternity leave to take his place in the team and the away win is priced at 5/6, with the visitors having already enjoyed successes at Reading and Manchester United.
Any Bale goal celebrations will be muted, although the Welshman looks a good price at 7/1 to score the first goal and AVB might even consider fielding Emmanuel Adebayor for the first time, with the Togo striker able to hold the ball up away from home and bring others into play.
Chelsea v Manchester United 16:00
And now the moment you have all been waiting for! Chelsea might have experienced a Champions League setback on Tuesday when losing 2-1 against Shakhtar Donetsk, although there has been no stopping the Blues in the Premier League and they can go seven points clear of Manchester United if they win on Sunday afternoon.
There’s a pretty strong chance of this happening, with BetVictor offering 6/4 about the league leaders who have clear daylight between themselves and the Manchester clubs following a near-impeccable start to the campaign which has seen the London side win seven and draw one of their eight matches.
Last weekend’s 4-2 win at White Hart Lane illustrated the resilience in the team as they fought back from 2-1 down and it really was the Juan Mata show, with the Spaniard working with Eden Hazard to carve apart the Spurs defence and they will fancy doing the same to the Red Devils.
Sir Alex Ferguson’s team are a 21/10 chance (Coral bookmaker) to claim an important win although the Scot admitted after Tuesday’s 3-2 win against Braga that the defence was a concern, with Rio Ferdinand returning to partner Jonny Evans after Michael Carrick struggled during the week.
This was a happy hunting ground for Robin van Persie last season when the-then Arsenal striker plundered a hat-trick as part of a 5-3 win and he will look to link up with Wayne Rooney and put the Chelsea defence on the back foot, especially as they are without the suspended John Terry.
Last season, this fixture was highly exciting and saw United come back from three goals down to draw 3-3, with Stan James offering 5/2 that the game ends all square although you can’t help but feel United are there for the taking this time around.
That man Mata is an 8/1 chance to score the first goal of the game, with Hazard a 9/1 poke and Branislav Ivanovic catches the eye at 25/1 considering that the Serbian likes to get into attacking positions and offers a threat from set pieces.