Liverpool can move closer to the Champions League
March 31st, 2017 | Ian Carnaby's Sports News
There are two feasible betting opportunities in the Premier League this weekend. I hesitate to come out strongly for a team in a local derby but I feel LIVERPOOL have the fire-power to overcome Everton at Anfield, while Stoke, hard to break down as always (unless they’re playing Tottenham), can record a low-scoring draw at Leicester.
When the first Merseyside derby took place a few months ago, Liverpool looked set to overwhelm their neighbours but it was deep into stoppage time before they settled the issue. They have had a somewhat patchy campaign but the overall feeling is that Jurgen Klopp is gradually moving them in the right direction and, in Sadio Mane, they have the sort of player to make a mighty difference.
Whilst the Reds may be without Adam Lallana, Everton must reorganise following the sickening injury to Seamus Coleman in the Ireland v Wales international. There is no doubt Ronald Koeman is making steady progress but the Goodison faithful will almost certainly have to accept that a Europa League place is the realistic limit of their expectations this term. Liverpool, on the other hand, may well finish above both Arsenal and Manchester United, thereby returning to the Champions League.
As always, the betting game is about value and I’d accept the 8/11 about Liverpool with Hill’s, with 7/10 available elsewhere. I just feel they will soon be forcing the opposition on to the back foot and the goals will come sooner this time. Mane may well be the man of the match.
Like many others, I suspect that some of the Leicester players were not doing it for Claudio Ranieri and the results since his departure are nothing short of startling. At some point there will be a reality check, as people say these days, and a stubborn Stoke may supply it.
Southampton will have benefited from the international break although Shane Long’s involvement for Ireland probably makes it important that Gabbiadini is available when they host Bournemouth. I watch the Saints a lot and feel the layers flatter them sometimes but they have more strength in depth than the Cherries. 7/10 is too short, however, and if Gabbiadini misses out it’s untenable.
Newcastle cling on to a narrow lead in the Championship and should beat Wigan, while Brighton will also be odds-on against Blackburn. I’d be careful there because the visitors have given themselves a glimpse of safety and it may be quite tight. Huddersfield had an off night at Bristol City and many will expect them to beat Burton but the latter have been defending stubbornly in away games lately and I’d leave that alone. I’m not entirely convinced by Newcastle at present but, if a short-priced banker is your thing, the 2/5 with Hill’s against Wigan is the best investment from those three games.