Best Bets of the Weekend: Premier League Matchday 3

Manchester City
Barcelona officials have played down suggestions they will make a move for Manchester United star Paul Pogba this month.

After 11/4 and 3/1 winners already this season on our goalscorer picks, we’ve got a 13/5 shot this week as well as an 8/1 acca and a very generous 6/4 in a big televised game.


Banker of the Weekend: Manchester United to beat Tottenham at 6/4
This price looks a pretty hefty over-reaction to Manchester United’s admittedly dreadful display at Brighton. Clearly all is not well at Old Trafford and it looks like the Jose Mourinho three-year cycle is once again approaching its end days. But they shouldn’t be so big against a Tottenham team they have routinely beaten at home in recent years.

Spurs have been a very good side for a fair while now but have still lost on each of their last four visits to Old Trafford and have never even scored a goal there under Mauricio Pochettino. Their 100% start to the season has not been particularly convincing, with nervy victories over Newcastle – who have their own problems – and newly-promoted Fulham. Spurs are clearly not without their chances, and this is no bad time to be heading to Old Trafford, but the price surely underestimates the hosts who have won eight of their last nine Premier League home games, a run that includes successes against Arsenal, Liverpool and Chelsea.

Over 2.5 goals at evens is also worth considering here. Neither side has yet kept a clean sheet, and the bet would have copped in all four of the Premier League games played by the pair thus far – in two of the four the bet was in before half-time.


Long Shot of the Weekend: Newcastle to beat Chelsea at 9/2
Chelsea’s victory over Arsenal last weekend was surely more chaotic than they would have liked and they are still adjusting to a new way of playing under Maurizio Sarri. Newcastle were pretty disappointing at Cardiff last weekend but a return home and another game against one of the heavyweights could bring out the best in them as it did when Tottenham visited on the opening day.

Newcastle were desperately unlucky that day, with Tottenham’s opening goal crossing the line by a centimetre while the Magpies twice rattled the frame of the goal in a stirring second-half fightback. Chelsea are worthy favourites here, but we see nothing yet to show why they should be so much shorter here than Spurs were two weeks ago. Tottenham went off odds-against that day, while Chelsea are 8/13 jollies here.


Goalscorer of the Weekend: Marko Arnautovic to score against Arsenal at 13/5
We’ve had 11/4 and 3/1 success so far this season by looking for anytime goalscorers against the ‘big six’ with Jamie Vardy obliging against Manchester United and Aleksandar Mitrovic against Spurs. Arnautovic at 13/5 fits the bill this weekend against an Arsenal team that will be under huge pressure to record that first win of the Unai Emery regime having shipped five goals against Manchester City and Chelsea.

The Gunners should get their three points, but West Ham may well land a blow or two along the way despite their own sorry start to the season. Arnautovic has scored their only goal of the season – it’s worth noting he is on penalty duty – and was on target in this fixture as recently as April.


Acca of the Weekend: Man City to beat Wolves, Watford to beat Palace, Fulham to beat Burnley, Liverpool (-1) to beat Brighton at 8.02/1
City continue to sweep all before them and can justifiably be placed in almost any acca at any price right now, while Watford have made a fine start to the season and should have too much at home – where their record is sound – against Palace. Burnley have made a wretched start to what could be a difficult season domestically if they continue to progress in Europe. Fulham have lost both games so far but showed enough at Spurs last weekend to suggest that won’t last.

Liverpool may not be quite as reliable against all-comers as Man City but are not far off. They’re 1/6 to beat Brighton, but 4/9 to do so giving up a one-goal start which is the preferred option here. Nine of Liverpool’s last 10 Premier League wins have come by two or more goals as have 11 of Brighton’s last 12 Premier League defeats.