Arsenal v Everton
Arsenal will want to continue their chase of the Premier League title with a home victory against Everton. Arsenal struggled against Everton in this fixture last year, with a last minute goal saving them a point. Everton haven’t had the best of seasons this year, and are only 6 points above the relegation zone. Everton will be a stern task for Arsenal, as they have been to Chelsea and Tottenham and earned draws in both of them, as well as a 2-1 win over Manchester City away. The odds suggest Arsenal are strong favourites to win at 4/9, but they are missing key man Samir Nasri after pulling a hamstring. Robin Van Persie is 3/1 to score first, but if you’d rather win a bigger sum of money, then Andrei Arshavin at 6/1 is my recommendation. It will be a tricky game for Arsenal, but I think they will overcome it, putting pressure on Manchester United at the top.
My recommendation; Arsenal 2-1 Everton (7/1)
Sunderland v Chelsea
Sunderland provided one of the biggest shocks of the season when they thumped Chelsea 3-0 at Stamford Bridge, but Chelsea will want to get revenge, and continue their resurgence of form, and challenge for the title. Having signed Luiz and Torres in the January transfer window, they are clearly stating their ambitions of winning all the trophies this season, but are 10 points behind Manchester United in the league. The two new signings will most likely not be playing in the fixture tonight, but Chelsea will have a strong squad which is capable of winning the title. Chelsea 4/6 favourites to win the match tonight, although Sunderland home form has been very impressive. Arsenal, Manchester United and Manchester City have visited the Stadium of Light this season and all failed to win. Blackpool are the only team to win there this season. Sunderland are 9/2 to win it, which to me seems like a good odds if you fancy a Sunderland win, and you would be a fool to rule that out. Torres is 3/1 to score first, although he may not start having not trained with the Chelsea squad, so Drogba at 3/1 is the more sensible option. I reckon Chelsea will continue their good form of late, and get revenge for the embarrassing defeat to Sunderland earlier in the season.
My recommendation; Sunderland 1-3 Chelsea (10/1)
Manchester United v Aston Villa
One of the biggest shocks last season was Aston Villa winning 1-0 at Old Trafford, their first victory there for 26 years. It will be another shock, if not bigger, if Aston Villa were to end Manchester United’s unbeaten run this season. Manchester United have won 34 points from a possible 36 at home this season, and at Old Trafford, they have shown their real qualities. Despite Aston Villa having a poor season, they have been signs in recent weeks that they are edging back to their old selves, and have also bought a lot of players in the transfer market, including Darren Bent. Darren Bent has scored the first goal in the goal with his two most recent trips, with a 2-2 draw with Sunderland last season, and the 5-2 defeat for Tottenham the season before that. For him to score first again in this fixture is 9/1 and you wouldn’t want to rule it out. The most sensible choice however, is betting on Dimitar Berbatov. He is currently the top goal scorer in the Premier League, and has scored 5 more goals than second place Carlos Tevez. Berbatov is 5/2 to score first, which wont win you the biggest sums of money. I reckon Manchester United will have too much for Aston Villa at home, but it will be a close game.
My recommendation; Manchester United 1-0 Aston Villa (6/1)