EPL Best Bets
Saturday, 10:00 a.m. ET
I’m holding a ticket for Bournemouth to win the FA Cup at + 8000, so I’m hoping they take that competition very seriously. They have Championship side Leicester in the next round, so they will be favorites to make it to the last eight. I am also going to be getting them onside here as an EPL best bet. Let’s not forget they are still in a relegation battle. Sitting on 27 points and in 12th place, they are only eight points clear of the drop zone and one ahead of their hosts in this fixture.
A win against the Cottagers will provide valuable breathing space and keep a rival firmly in the mix. I am taking them to get that win on Saturday but with the safety net of tie no bet, meaning we get a full return of our stake should the game end all square. Odds of +108 look value.
I mentioned last week that I would be looking to oppose Fulham where possible for the remainder of the season, and this looks like a good opportunity to start. Marco Silva’s side raced into a 2-0 lead at Burnley last weekend but were left hanging on in the end. If the match had an extra five minutes, I am certain they would have lost rather than escaping with a 2-2 draw.
The fact they could have killed the Clarets off but instead took their foot off the gas and let Vincent Kompany’s men back in says a lot about their current state of mind. For me, Fulham remain the one side with one eye already on the summer holidays.
The Cottagers are winless in their last six games across all competitions. A sequence started by League Cup semi-final defeat to Liverpool, a tie which, in my opinion, prematurely ended their season.
Since then, they put in a terrible showing in losing 2-0 at home to Newcastle followed by a dire goalless draw with Everton when they were lucky to score nil. Silva has built a strong defense, they don’t suffer too many heavy defeats, but they struggle for goals.
That is something Bournemouth do not have a problem with. Dominic Solanke has 13 league goals for the season. Only Haaland and Salah have more, and he scored in his side’s 3-0 win in the reverse fixture as recently as Boxing Day.
Last season, it finished 2-2 at Craven Cottage, with the Cherries winning 2-1 at home. Solanke hit the back of the net in both of those fixtures too.
Bournemouth have a great record overall in this matchup and in this away tie where they haven’t tasted defeat since 1992.
EPL Best Bet: Bournemouth Tie No Bet at +108.
Saturday, 10:00 a.m. ET
This is the fourth meeting between these two sides, having been drawn together in the FA Cup 3rd Round. I wouldn’t read too much into the two cup games, given both featured heavily rotated sides, but what is a great line of form is the 4-1 thrashing Wolves handed to Brentford in the reverse league fixture in December.
Brentford will point to having talisman Ivan Toney available after missing the first three meetings, but the big thing for me is this is at Molineux. Since their promotion to the Premier League, we immediately saw the Bees could beat anyone on their day in their own stadium, on the road there is less tempo, and they are a pale imitation.
That makes the bet here a simple one. Wolves to win on the moneyline at +110.
The home team are one of the most underrated sides in the English topflight in my opinion. They are 10th in the table, and only last week went to Chelsea and absolutely battered them, running out 4-2 winners with Matheus Cunha blasting home a hat-trick.
Gary O’Neil has done an incredible job and totally transformed this side into one of the most entertaining ones in the division. They are just four points off of the top-seven and with a realistic chance of qualifying for Europe for the first time in four years.
Toney’s return has made Brentford a public play and are massively overrated by the books. Thomas Frank’s side are a shambles defensively, conceding at least two goals in seven of their last eight matches and three or more in four of their last five league games.
They have lost seven of their 10 EPL road fixtures this term including all of the last five. One of those defeats was to Sheffield United, giving the Blades only their second win of a terrible season.
All of which makes the +110 a cracking price. For me, they should be around -110, so let’s take advantage.
EPL Best Bet: Wolves moneyline +110
Monday, 3:00 p.m. ET
I am still not convinced Mauricio Pochettino knows his best starting 11, but I am backing them to get the win here at Selhurst Park at -116, although I expect that price to be long gone come kick-off. However, this play is more to do with Crystal Palace rather than Chelsea.
The Argentinian has had to integrate a whole host of new players and suffered injuries to some key personnel which has led to a season of inconsistency. The Blues were embarrassed in a 4-1 defeat at Liverpool, terrible in losing 4-2 at home to Wolves and then sensational in sweeping Aston Villa aside 3-1 on their own turf.
There is a massive positive for Chelsea in this fixture. The fact is that it is away from home because Stamford Bridge is not a happy place right now. In fact, it is downright hostile.
I was surprised by just how well Poch’s men performed at Villa Park in midweek, but not that such a good display came on the road rather than in front of their own fans. The manager has a great opportunity to win those fans over in a couple of weeks when they play in the League Cup final. In fact, there is a chance of a cup double on the cards, and the players will be eager to make the starting lineup for those big games.
But as I said, this is as much about a fade on Palace over a support of the visitors. I have mentioned the vital importance of Eberechi Eze and Michael Olise, and both have been ruled out of playing in this one. Captain Marc Guehi will also miss the game against his old club.
No Eze, no Olise, no Guehi, which means no chance. The Eagles are in freefall with only two wins in their last 14 games across all competitions. Eze and Olise were directly involved in four of the five goals scored in those two victories.
I haven’t even mentioned yet that Chelsea have won the last 13 meetings between the two clubs! It’s going to be 14 here, and expect the Selhurst Park faithful to be far from happy.
EPL Best Bet: Chelsea moneyline at -116