Norwich City v Manchester City 12:45 BST
Wigan Athletic’s excellent performance and 1-0 win over Manchester United on Wednesday effectively threw Manchester City a lifeline as far as the Premier League title race is concerned, although they will have to improve on the road to beat Norwich on Saturday.
Many might assume that Roberto Mancini’s team will comfortably land the three points in east Anglia after that 4-0 drubbing of West Brom during the week, although the bottom line is that City have failed to win nine of their sixteen away games this term and barely have any wins on the road in 2012.
The visitors can be backed at a best price 8/13 (Stan James free bets) to win the game and perhaps this bookmaker are happy to take City on knowing that their last three Premier League away matches have seen them lose at Swansea, draw at Stoke and lose at Arsenal.
However, Sergio Aguero is back in attack and the Argentine looked slick against the Baggies when scoring twice, with the forward available at 4/1 (Paddy Power) to score the first of this lunchtime encounter, while Carlos Tevez will be unlucky to lose his place after linking up so well with his compatriot.
Nevertheless, it shouldn’t escape people’s attention that Norwich beat Tottenham Hotspur on Monday afternoon and they did so with a performance that was brimming with attacking intent. The Canaries will be feeling no pressure to perform and odds of 6/1 (Bet Victor £50 free bets) looks simply too big about Paul Lambert’s team.
Grant Holt is being tipped by many to get a surprise England call-up and he is 9/1 (bet365) to break the deadlock against the Three Lions number one Joe Hart, while Norwich also look irresistible at 4/1 on the Draw No Bet market.
Sunderland v Wolves 15:00 BST
If results really go against them, then Wolverhampton Wanderers could be relegated come Monday night, with supporters simply waiting for the inevitable to happen after a torrid campaign which has included 21 Premier League defeats.
Wolves actually started the season with two wins and a draw, although the feelgood factor didn’t remain at Molineux for long, with those seven points accounting for nearly a third of their overall tally.
Terry Connor has been given an impossible job following the sacking of Mick McCarthy and will simply be looking for players to show some pride and passion in their remaining games, starting at the Stadium of Light this weekend.
The Midlands side are 13/2 (Bet Victor free bets) to enjoy their first win under Connor, with Wolves having taken the lead in their last two away games only to lose 2-1 against Norwich and Stoke City respectively.
Matt Jarvis will surely find a Premier League side that wants his services next term and he looks overpriced at 20/1 to score first in this match, although Sunderland will have a point to prove after getting whipped 4-0 by Everton on Monday.
While Martin O’Neill has done very well since taking charge at the Stadium of Light, they have taken a couple of beatings on the road and the northern Irishman will be looking for a reaction from his players in this encounter, with the Black Cats a backable 4/7 (Stan James) to win the game.
O’Neill hopes to land the permanent services of Nicklas Bendtner this summer and the Dane is the 9/2 (Paddy Power) favourite to score first, with Stephane Sessegnon apparently staying at the Wearside club and he should pose a scoring threat on Saturday.
Swansea City v Blackburn Rovers 15:00 BST
Swansea City have earned plenty of plaudits this season for their Premier League performances, although the Welsh side may well finish the campaign just a few points above the relegation zone after a poor run of recent results.
A top half finish looked on the cards after beating Manchester City before winning 3-0 at Fulham, although four straight defeats have seen Brendan Rodgers’ side sink down the table and they have found the net just once since that Craven Cottage victory.
Rodgers may look to freshen things up for the visit of Blackburn and City are warm favourites at 21/20 (Boylesports free bet) to claim what would be their seventh victory of the season at the Liberty Stadium.
The manager will be looking for a reaction after a poor effort at Lofus Road on Wednesday night and Danny Graham (11/2 Bet Victor) might be given another chance against a Blackburn side that will also be licking their wounds after losing 3-2 at home to a Liverpool side who played much of Tuesday’s match with ten men.
Rovers are starting to wobble at exactly the wrong time and now find themselves three points adrift of safety following Wigan and QPR’s resurgence, with Bet Victor happy to lay odds of 3/1 about Steve Kean’s team somehow landing the spoils in this match.
Blackburn did win the reverse fixture by a 4-2 scoreline thanks to a four-goal salvo from Yakubu who missed and scored a penalty against Liverpool, with the Nigerian available at 7/1 to score the first goal of this particular game.
West Brom v QPR 15:00 BST
Two evenly-matched teams will clash swords at The Hawthorns on Saturday afternoon and the bookmakers appear to have overpriced Queens Park Rangers winning this game.
So much for the Hoops’ difficult run-in, with Mark Hughes’ side landing three points at home to Liverpool and Arsenal, while Wednesday’s 3-0 win against Swansea City was probably their performance of the season.
QPR now head to the Midlands looking to really distance themselves between the bottom three and odds of 29/10 (Stan James free bets) look really big considering that West Brom are pretty vulnerable at home this season.
Roy Hodgson’s team are one of the few Premier League outfits to have managed more points on the road this term and have only sporadically delivered the goods in front of their own supporters, such as the 1-0 win over Chelsea that caused Andre Villas-Boas to lose his job.
West Brom did win their latest home game which was a 3-0 win over Blackburn although that has been their only victory in six and QPR stand every chance of victory if they can reproduce Wednesday night’s performance.
Bobby Zamora is a 15/2 chance to score the first goal of the game after leading the line very well against the Swans, while Jamie Mackie got himself on the scoresheet and has been a valuable player for the team in recent weeks.
After losing four away games on the bounce, Hughes will probably be happy to take a point from this match ahead of next Saturday’s home match against Tottenham Hotspur and you can get odds of 5/2 that this game ends all square.