HomeSoccerEPLEPL Best Bets for the February 17th-19th matches

    EPL Best Bets for the February 17th-19th matches

    Nigel Seeley offers his EPL best bets for this weekend's matches.

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    EPL Best Bets

    Let’s look at my EPL best bets for the weekend’s matches.

    Nottingham Forest vs. West Ham

    Saturday, 10:00 a.m. ET

     

    There are several sides in the Premier League this season that are so inconsistent we still don’t quite know what to expect from them. Arguably we have two of them meeting here at the City Ground.  

    Despite having put together a shocking run of results that sees them winless from their last eight games, I am taking the home side on the moneyline at +138. It’s possibly not a play against any other side in the league, but the visitors haven’t won in seven, either. 

    What makes me like Forest here is they have goals in the team. Despite winning only two of their last seven in the league, they have scored 13 times in those games. The problem lies in defense, where they have conceded 14 across those same fixtures.

    When Nuno Espírito Santo became head coach in December, he decided to change how the team played, making them much more attack-minded and playing on the front foot. He will be pleased to see the return of all the players who were at the African Cup of Nations, with his side having the most absentees during the tournament. The biggest boost will be the return of striker Taiwo Awoniyi who makes such a difference when he plays. 

    On the flipside, we have a West Ham team struggling to score goals. Since returning from injury, top scorer Jarrod Bowen hasn’t scored in any of his four games, and Michail Antonio has been a miss for much of the campaign.

    The Hammers haven’t scored in either of their last two games and have only hit the back of the net four times in that winless run of seven. That includes two games against lower-league opposition in the FA Cup.

    David Moyes saw his side hit for six at home to Arsenal last weekend, and you would expect some sort of bounce back. However, this is a huge match for the hosts, who must win and turn their dreadful City Ground form around.

    They survived relegation last term based on their home form which was comfortably the best of those teams who finished in the bottom half. This season only four sides have a worse record on home soil.

    It’s a leap of faith to trust them, but one I am prepared to take. On their day, with the passionate support roaring them on, they are a match for anyone, and with the goals they have in them currently, they can certainly beat this misfiring West Ham outfit.

    EPL Best Bet: Nottingham Forest Money Line at +138.

    Luton vs. Manchester United

    Sunday, 11:30 a.m. ET

    Luton have been the fairytale story of the Premier League so far, and they have been brilliant in their approach to every game. But let’s be brutal about it – they’ve only gained 5 wins and 20 points from 23 games so far.

    Because most people expected them to sink without a trace and finish with a record-low points total, the perception is they are doing a lot better than they are. Yes, they have competed, but they have still lost the majority of their games, especially against the better clubs.

    West Ham, Tottenham, Arsenal, Manchester City and Chelsea all won at Kenilworth Road by a single goal, as did relegation rivals Burnley, while most recent visitors, the rock-bottom Blades, came away with a 3-1 victory.

    The 1-1 draw with Liverpool was a great result, but it was a game they actually should have won on the day. As was the case recently when Rob Edwards saw his side leading 4-2 at Newcastle in the second half only to have to settle for a draw.

    They have been a great watch but ultimately haven’t been able to get the results. Their last match was the most disappointing one of the season—one they went into as favorites for the first time this term, only to be soundly beaten by the league’s bottom club.

    Next up is Manchester United, who, for the first time this season, are looking pretty good, undefeated this year across seven games in all competitions and scoring goals. They’ve scored at least two in each fixture, including trips to Wolves and Aston Villa, the most recent of a four-game winning road run.

    If this game was played at the start of the season, Manchester United would be around -250. I am amazed they are priced up at -125 and can only put it down to a public love affair with Luton.

    It appears Erik ten Hag finally knows his best team and has a settled starting line-up. Harry Maguire looks back to somewhere near his best and will be key here against the Hatters direct style.

    I’m sure it will be a tough game, and for the first 20 minutes, the home side will look to get at the visitors. But the Red Devils are yet to lose a first half this season so they can take the sting out of the passionate home support.

    United have a striker in form, with Rasmus Højlund scoring in each of his last five league games, and I think they will show their class here to claim all three points. 

    EPL Best Bet: Manchester United Money Line -125

    Everton vs Crystal Palace

    Monday, 3:00 p.m. ET

    I think this will be the last match Roy Hodgson will be in charge of Crystal Palace, especially if they lose. That’s exactly the bet I am playing, and if I am right, then they are bang in relegation trouble.

    This is a must-win game for Everton, with a victory lifting them out of the drop zone and only two points behind Palace. Their need to win is factored into the price here, but what isn’t is that this is not unfamiliar territory for the Toffees. They have had to scrap for their lives the last three seasons, and it has always been their home form that has gotten them out of trouble.

    Goodison Park will be rocking on Monday night, which makes it a very intimidating venue. Especially for a Crystal Palace side that, on my ratings, I currently have as the worst side in the league.

    Eberechi Eze, Michael Olise and Marc Guéhi are everything to this Palace side, and all three will be missing through injury. I watched them on Monday night against a Chelsea side that put in one of the worst first-half displays I have seen. The Blues didn’t have to improve too much in the second half but scored an early goal, and from that moment, Palace’s heads dropped, and there was only going to be one winner. Chelsea ended up with a 3-1 success.

    The Eagles are so reliant on those three players I would pretty much back anyone against them when they are all absent. I looked at the moneyline, but the price is a little too low for me, so instead went Everton -0.75 on the Asian Handicap.

    This means half the stake is on Everton -0.5 and half on Everton -1.0. So, if Everton win by a single goal, we win half our stake and get the other half refunded. We need the home side to win by two or more goals for a full win.

    This is the fourth time these sides have met this season, having played each other in the FA Cup, with the Toffees unbeaten across those games. They also hold a tremendous nine-game unbeaten record at home to Palace, winning six of the last seven meetings, including all of the last three. 

    EPL Best Bet: Everton -0.75 at -121

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