EPL: Week 38 Preview


Our EPL writer previews round 38 of the 2016/17 season.

It’s been a season to remember but as they say, all good things must come to an end. This weekend is the final round of English Premier League football, leaving us with one last chance to make a bit of cash before the curtain comes down.

Chelsea are the newly crowned champions and Sunderland; Middlesbrough and Hull City were deemed surplus to requirements. The top four is, however, yet to be finalised with Liverpool in need of maximum points, Arsenal require three points plus a favour from either Middlesbrough or Watford while Man City need only a point to secure Champions League qualification. Let’s find out what’s worth backing in our final preview for the season.

Sunday 21 May

Arsenal 7/20 | Draw 4/1 | Everton 6/1 
Since Arsene Wenger switched from a 4-4-2 formation to a 3-4-3, we have started to see the best of the Gunners. Six wins from their last seven - including four on the spin – has seen Arsenal back in the hunt for a place in the top four. They will, however, need a favour from Middlesbrough or Watford if they are to stand a chance of maintaining their terrific record of qualifying for the Champions League.

Everton have been a bit under the radar in recent weeks. The Toffees have lacked consistency and the goals have dried up in recent weeks, with just one goal and one win from their last four matches. A dour 1-0 victory at home to Watford last time out underlines that statement and Everton will need to up their game if they are to pull off a snatch and grab against a ‘Toffee’ hungry Arsenal side. This one is for the brave: Alexis Sanchez is in top goal scoring form and is gunning for the Golden Boot award; back the Chilean to Score first on our Price Boosts and Specials at 3/1! 

Burnley 12/10 | Draw 24/10 | West Ham 43/20
Burnley are safe from the drop, surviving their first season back in the English Premier League. They have been solid at home this season with 10 wins from 18 matches but just two wins from their last eight league games has seen the Clarets drop off the pace.

West Ham come to town with their tails between their legs following a 4-0 drumming at the hands of Liverpool last weekend. With nothing much to play for but a higher position on the log, a dull encounter is expected of this. I could be wrong but judging by Burnley’s tactical play on home soil and West Ham’s inability to find the back of the net in recent weeks, Under 2.5 Goals looks well worth a punt at 19/20. 

Chelsea 1/8 | Draw 15/2 | Sunderland 18/1 
Off to Stamford bridge where John Terry will be crowned a Chelsea champion for the last time in his career. The Blues will also be targeting a record 30 Premier League wins for the season, so we should see a great team fielded by Antonio Conte despite the FA Cup final against Arsenal next weekend.

Bottom-of-the-log Sunderland have suffered 25 defeats from a possible 37 this season. They have been woeful at best with only shot stopper Jordan Pickford and talisman Jermain Defoe producing the goods this season. Get on the Home To Win To Nil market at 7/10! 

Hull City 5/1 | Draw 34/10 | Tottenham 5/10
Hull City are one of the three teams that will drop down to the Championship after just one season back in the top-flight. The Tigers have lost back-to-back matches, without scoring and conceding six goals. It may be a while until they make it back to the Premier League, so they should put on a good show for their besotted supporters but that’s easier said than done against a ruthless Tottenham side.

Spurs were absolutely brilliant at the King Power Stadium on Thursday evening, humiliating Leicester City with a 6-1 humbling! Other than Tottenham’s hiccup at West Ham, suffering a 1-0 defeat, they have been nothing short of brilliant with 11 wins from their last 12 matches. The away win should be backed. 

Leicester City 9/10 | Draw 26/10 | Bournemouth 11/4
Following a run of five straight wins on home soil, Leicester dropped the ball on Thursday as Tottenham ran riot on hostile territory, cruising to a 6-1 victory. The Foxes will look to make amends on Sunday but must do so against a goal hungry Bournemouth side, unbeaten in their last four matches with three victories.

Leicester have now lost back-to-back games but a win here would see them leapfrog their opponents and given their horrendous start to the campaign, a top 10 finish would be a great way to round off the season. The Cherries are in a rich vein of form, however, and will be keen to end the campaign off strong. Both Teams To Score (Yes) looks a good bet here at 5/10. 

Liverpool 1/10 | Draw 7/1 | Middlesbrough 22/1 
Liverpool will be looking to secure three points against already-relegated Middlesbrough at Anfield on Sunday, which will see Jurgen Klopp’s side secure a top-four spot and return to the Champions League for the first time in three seasons. Jurgen Klopp’s side come into this matchup off a resounding 4-0 victory at West Ham last Sunday and will be determined to build on that.

No team have won fewer games than Middlesbrough have this season. In 37 games, Boro have won only five times, most recently at home to Sunderland last month. After their 3-0 win over Swansea in December, they failed to win in the following 16 league games. That streak saw the side earn only six points and score seven goals. It’s difficult to look past a Liverpool victory but at 1/7, it would be better to follow our Price Boosts and Specials – get on Sturridge To Score Anytime at even money. The English forward looked his old self at West Ham last time out and is tipped to get a goal or two here. 

Manchester United 33/20 | Draw 9/4 | Crystal Palace 33/20 
Man United’s odds to win against Crystal Palace have never been as high as they are now. Following manager Jose Mourinho’s comments about the team he will set out on Sunday – saying he would field fringe side, while asking for Sam Allardyce to show his team mercy – the bookies have drastically increased the Red Devils odds to claim the win.

Following a run of three straight defeats, the Eagles bounced back to winning ways with a 4-0 trouncing of Hull City last weekend, giving Crystal Palace plenty of confidence ahead of their clash with Man United. It’s one of those games you should stay away from but for those brave enough, get on the Palace victory at 33/20! 

Southampton 15/20 | Draw 26/10 | Stoke City 7/2
Southampton have shown plenty of fighting spirit in their last few games and will look to end the season off with a bang in front of the St. Mary’s faithful. They were excellent against Man United on Tuesday and deserved to edge the win but a Man of the Match performance from shot-stopper, Sergio Romero, kept the Saints at bay.

Stoke have been terrible in recent matches on the road, going winless on their travels in seven encounters with five defeats. The reverse tie ended goalless but with home advantage, Southampton are tipped to claim maximum points. 

Swansea City 1/1 | Draw 24/10 | West Brom 26/10 
Swansea have been outstanding of late, pulling off the great escape with three wins from their last four matches. West Brom are without a win in their last eight matches but will look to grind out one last solid performance.

With safety assured, the Swans will be less pressured, while the Baggies will want to give their fans one last thing to smile and cheer about. There should be goals here, with both sides going all out for the win. The Over 2.5 Goals market is tipped at 9/10. 

Watford 19/2 | Draw 5/1 | Manchester City 2/9
Watford have been dreadful in recent weeks with five losses on the spin. Their home form has improved, though, with three wins from their last four games on their ground. The hornets will be keen to upset Man City but it will take a massive performance to get a point, let alone three.

Pep Guardiola’s men need only a point to secure Champions League qualification but will go for maximum. The Citizens have won three on the trot, scoring 10 goals and conceding just twice. Nonetheless, Watford have conceded just once in their last four home matches – a wonder goal from Emre Can – so I’m going with the Away To Win Both Halves – No – market at 5/10. 

Leicester City v Bournemouth – BTTS (5/10) 
Tottenham Win (5/10) 
Crystal Palace Win (33/20) 

Written by Aaron Crowie @Hollywoodbets

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