Football Tips & Predictions – 26th & 27th December
Merry Christmas everybody! I hope you had a great day yesterday and that after your fill of Turkey, Mince Pies and your favourite beverage, you are now ready for some Boxing Day football action.
Well, I made a profit of £20 in midweek in the EPL and then followed that last week with a massive £5 profit at the weekend too! Still, £25 that’s better in my account than it is the bookies!
With the baffling decision by the EPL to state that clubs can fulfil fixtures if they have 13 fit players including a goalkeeper (a decision which is massively unfair to the teams with smaller squads) it looks like we should actually see these games going ahead, barring another Covid-19 calamity in the days leading up to the matches.
I do hope we don’t get the situation we had in the FA Cup last season where Aston Villa were without so many first teamers for their Third Round tie with Liverpool they had to field an effective youth team and were well-beaten. That is extremely unfair to those teams badly hit by Covid, especially those with smaller squads.
Anyway, I’ve had my 10 pence worth on that and all that remains is for me to say that I have assumed we are going to have a full Boxing Day set of fixtures (even though I still think games will be cancelled) and I have put together the following set of tips!
Remember to check back too in a couple of days for the midweek set of games taking place from the 28th to the 30th December this week.
Premier League Tips: Sunday 26th December
If there is one thing that Wolves have proven to be this season it is strong defensively. They may not score many goals, but as they have showed in recent games against the very best in the Premier League, they do not concede many either.
Watford could be considered the opposite of that as the Hornets have scored more goals than Wolves but also conceded a great deal more and they have been on the receiving end of a few hammerings at times this season.
I am not sure Claudio Ranieri quite has this Watford team where he wants them just yet and I think heading to Molineux on Boxing Day is about as tough as it gets outside of a game against the big six or seven teams in the Premier League.
As such, I think Wolves will end up with a win and I can see them keeping a clean sheet and against this leaky Watford defence, I am backing them to perhaps grab more than the single goal in this victory with this correct score bet.
Are there signs that Antonio Conte is starting to get the kind of performances that he wants from Tottenham? Their effort against Liverpool was excellent and while they secured a point in that game, they had enough chances to have won the match and that will be a positive they can take from that game.
Crystal Palace are a bit up and down this season but that is not surprising as they have been a team that does that for many years. I do feel though Patrick Vieira has been a positive attitude and I can see this team getting better the longer the Frenchman is in charge.
However, it is a big ask for them to go to Spurs and turn around their poor form against them on the road, especially with the home side in their most consistent form of the season since they won their opening three games.
With Spurs now starting to see better production from their star men, Harry Kane back in amongst the goals and Son too, I think this could be a tough game for Palace and I can see the home side snatching the win after a tight first half.
Could Chelsea be on a very tricky wicket here? Villa have looked so much more consistent already under Steven Gerrard and the games that they have lost have been against the top two, both by single goals.
Chelsea in contrast come into this game on the back of a number of draws and a loss and their much vaunted defence, which was so solid at the start of the season has started to leak goals at a worrying rate and that will certainly concern Thomas Tuchel.
Villa in contrast. Have looked very strong defensively and I think this is going to be a massive test for Chelsea. They crushed Villa 3-0 earlier in the season at Stamford Bridge and knocked them out of the League Cup on penalties, but this could be a much tougher game.
While I can’t quite see Aston Villa having the quality to win this game, I do feel that they will earn something from it and given Chelsea’s predisposition to drawing games at the moment, my money is on this one being a draw too.
Premier League Tips: Monday 27th December
Newcastle United have a miserable record against Manchester United. In their last four games against the Red Devils, they have lost three of those 4-1 and the other 3-1. They have also conceded 41 goals in the Premier League this season, comfortably the most of any team.
Ralf Rangnick seems to have come in and done a good job with this United team as they have won their last three EPL games and in truth, they are the hot favourites to land the win here. All the stats and quality of the two teams point to a Manchester United win.
However, I am going to buck the trend. Christmas is a time for miracles so they say and something just tells me that Newcastle are going to have a very decisive next couple of months and they need a statement result to kick start that. I think that could be here.
With the fans claiming they got St James’ Park back at the last game, albeit in a 4-0 loss to Man City, Eddie Howe knows he needs a positive result and soon and this is a ground where if the fans get behind them, Newcastle can produce shock wins. I’m betting on them to do that here.
*Tips are exactly that tips (predictions) and do not guarantee success.