Midweek Premier League: 16th April 2014
This weeks midweek Premier League fixtures brings two very important fixtures as Everton host Crystal Palace, and Man City take on Sunderland.
Everton v Crystal Palace
Liverpool aren’t the only side on Merseyside enjoying a glorious run of form, city rivals Everton have won seven league games in succession to move into fourth in the table and give themselves an excellent chance of Champions League qualification.
A relatively kind set of fixtures allowed Roberto Martinez‘s men to gather some momentum, and against Arsenal 10 days ago they were absolutely brilliant.
They backed that performance up by grinding out a result at Sunderland on Saturday, and now they must beat a confident Crystal Palace side, buoyed by virtually securing their Premier League status, to maintain the momentum.
The Eagles have been superb ever since Tony Pulis took over towards the end of last year. His first intention back then was to tighten up the Palace defence, and it’s that department of the game that has allowed his men to record no fewer than seven 1-0 wins since November.
The majority of their points have been at Selhurst Park and have actually been pretty poor on the road, failing to find the net in five of their last seven away games.
Everton’s home form, meanwhile, has been relentless, with the Toffees winning seven successive Premier League matches at Goodison Park.
It all points to a home win then but Palace under Pulis are a well organised unit and, in trips to Man City, Arsenal and Spurs this season, they got to half-time without conceding before eventually succumbing in the second half.
While Everton swatted Arsenal aside in their last home game, they took a while to break down rock bottom Sunderland on Saturday so perhaps a a similar picture may emerge on Wednesday?
It does seem however that Palace only win when they don’t concede – nine of their last 10 league wins were achieved by keeping a clean sheet – so if Everton can find the net then they are very likely to run out winners.
In fact, don’t be surprised at all if it’s the Toffees that are the side that don’t concede on Wednesday night as statistics tell us that Palace have failed to find the back of the net in five of their last seven league away games.
Palace are the lowest scoring side in the division, so an Everton win to nil is a great wager, we should maybe look at Over 2.5 Goals, in case Palace do manage to score.
We’re confident about a home win so if the away side do find the net and scupper the main wager then Everton should still be able to score at least two and land the ‘Overs’.
Plus the Toffees might score at least three without conceding allowing for joy all round.
Back Everton Win to Nil @ 2.14 and
Back Draw HT Everton FT @ 4.40
Manchester City v Sunderland
City are scoring goals again; five against Fulham, three at Old Trafford, four against Southampton, and two at Anfield for example, and all this without the services of Sergio Aguero.
Sunderland on the other hand are now in dire form. They’ve taken just one point from the last 24 available to them, conceded four against Arsenal, five against Spurs, and lost crucial relegation battles to the likes of Hull, West Ham, and Norwich.
City could virtually be back to full strength against the Black Cats on Wednesday – only Yaya Toure is a doubt after he came off against Liverpool with a hamstring problem – and that should allow for a straightforward home victory.
The only question we are posed with then is how many goals wll the Citizens score?
Gus Poyet’s men have lost their last four away games, conceding 13 goals in the process, so we know that they are vulnerable on their travels, so City should notch at least three or four here.
The Any Unquoted Correct Score (any side to score at least four) is available to back at 2.8, which considering the number of times Manuel Pellegrini‘s men have done so, and the dreadful form Sunderland are in, that looks the bet to have here.
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