Premier League Preview - Saturday 15th December

by Leon Hughes on Thursday 13th December, 2018


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After another thrilling round of Champions League games, it is back to domestic football for England’s elite this week. This weekend marks the beginning of the traditional festive football fixtures with each Premier League side in action five times over the next three weeks. 
 
The weekend starts at the home of the champions where Manchester City will look to bounce back from last week’s defeat when Everton visit the Etihad Stadium. Here at Betting Sites, we preview all of Saturday’s games and offer odds courtesy of betting partner, William Hill. 
 

Manchester City vs Everton (12:30) 

 
Manchester City suffered a first Premier League defeat of the season last weekend which allowed Liverpool to leapfrog them at the Premier League summit. With the league leaders not in action until Sunday, Manchester City can return to the top of the table when they host Liverpool’s cross-city neighbours, Everton. 
 
Everton have a decent record at the Etihad Stadium, claiming 5 wins from their 15 league visits. This fixture has ended in a draw in each of the past three seasons. However, Manchester City have been almost unplayable at home recently. The Premier League holders have a 100% home record in the league this season, one of only five teams in Europe’s big five leagues. 
 
Manchester City’s chances will also be boosted by a record of 51 games without defeat in the Premier League against the other members of the so-called big six. 
 
If you want to make a claim for an Everton win you can point to Manchester City’s growing injury list. City are suffering from a minor injury crisis affecting some key players. Sergio Aguero, Kevin de Bruyne, Raheem Sterling and John Stones are all doubts whilst David Silva and Benjamin Mendy will miss out. 
 
Match odds 
Manchester City - 1/5 
Draw - 6/1 
Everton - 12/1 
 
Prediction 
3-1 
 

Crystal Palace vs Leicester City 

 
Crystal Palace will be without Wilfried Zaha for the visit of Leicester City and if recent history is anything to go by that is a major blow for the home side. Incredibly, Palace have not won a league game without their talismanic winger since recording a 3-2 win away at Sunderland way back in September 2016. Zaha will be joined in the stands by James Tomkins as both players serve a one-game suspension after receiving a fifth booking of the season last time out. 
 
On his side’s woeful record without Zaha, Palace manager, Roy Hodgson, explained “All curses have to be lifted and this is another opportunity to end that. It is a fact and I consistently have to answer it until we win without him.” 
 
A home win today will see the Eagles win a third successive league game against Leicester City in their history. Palace won home and away last season, scoring eight goals and conceding none. 
 
Leicester’s 2-0 loss at home to Spurs last time out ended a run of six league games without defeat. In contrast, Palace have won just two of their past ten league games and are ten points adrift of Saturday’s visitors. 
 
Leicester have scored in nine consecutive away fixtures and the last four meetings between the sides have seen 16 goals scored, therefore we can expect the ball to find the back of the net a few times at Selhurst Park on Saturday. 
 
Match odds 
Crystal Palace - 17/10 
Draw - 21/10 
Leicester City - 9/5 
 
Prediction 
1-2 
 

Huddersfield Town vs Newcastle United 

 
We're not even at the midway stage in the Premier League season yet you feel the Christmas fixtures will make or break Huddersfield Town’s season. Huddersfield are one of seven sides that are starting to be cut adrift of those above them and over the next six games the Terriers will take on five of their six main relegation rivals. 
 
Huddersfield Town are currently on a run of three successive defeats whilst Newcastle have taken just one point from their last three. Don’t expect too many goals in this one. Both games last season finished 1-0 to the home side. Games involving Newcastle United have seen a league-low of 35 goals whilst only Huddersfield (10 goals) have scored less than the 13 goals recorded by Rafa Benitez’s side. 
 
Match odds 
Huddersfield Town - 8/5 
Draw - 19/10 
Newcastle United - 21/10 
 
Prediction 
0-1 
 

Tottenham Hotspur vs Burnley 

 
Spurs are back from their Nou Camp heroics and will look to keep the pressure on the top two when Burnley visit Wembley Stadium on Saturday. 
 
Pochettino’s side have made their best ever start to a Premier League season, amassing 36 points from 16 games. However, such is the form displayed by their title rivals, they could sit eight points adrift of top spot by the time they kick off on Saturday. 
 
The home side are suffering from a defensive crisis with Kieran Trippier, Serge Aurier, Davinson Sanchez and Juan Foyth all fitness doubts. If neither Trippier or Aurier are passed fit then youngster, Kyle Walker-Peters will continue at right back. 
 
Burnley meanwhile could find themselves bottom of the league if results go against them this weekend. Their win at home to Brighton last time out halted a run of eight league games without a win, a run stretching back to September. 
 
Burnley have not beaten Tottenham since 2010 and you have to go all the way back to October 1974 to find the last away win the Clarets have claimed at Spurs in the league. 
 
Match odds 
Tottenham Hotspur - 1/5 
Draw - 13/2 
Burnley - 11/1 
 
Prediction 
3-0 
 

Watford vs Cardiff City 

 
Watford’s rotten form has seen them go six league games without a win. They could also lose a third successive home league game for the first time since 1988. They will however be boosted by the dire away form of Saturday’s visitors, Cardiff City. 
 
The away side will hope to transfer some of their superb home form into games away from South Wales. Neil Warnock’s Bluebirds have claimed just one point on the road all season and that was against a Huddersfield side that played almost half an hour with ten men on the opening weekend. In contrast, they have managed 13 points in nine home games. 
 
Match odds 
Watford - 4/6 
Draw - 27/10 
Cardiff City - 9/2 
 
Prediction 
1-1 
 

Wolverhampton Wanderers vs AFC Bournemouth 

 
The first ever top-flight game between Wolves and Bournemouth and both sides arrive at Molineux in a solid mid-table position. 
 
Home sides, Wolves, have already achieved more wins (6) in this Premier League campaign than they managed in the whole of their last top-flight season in 2011/12. A win on Saturday will see them win three successive top-flight games for the first time in the Premier League and the first time in the top-flight since 1980. 
 
The wheels have come off in recent weeks for Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth. Despite their lofty league position, the Cherries have lost five of their last six games. Their loss of form has coincided with injury to forward, Callum Wilson. The England international could be back in the match day squad on Saturday. 
 
Wolves’ own centre forward, Diego Jota, has scored in each of his last two games, halting a run of 13 games without a goal in the Premier League. 
 
Match odds 
Wolverhampton Wanderers - Evens 
Draw - 9/4 
AFC Bournemouth - 16/5 
 
Prediction 
2-0 
 

Fulham vs West Ham United (17:30) 

 
A cracking London derby will round off Saturday’s Premier League fixtures as Fulham host West Ham United at Craven Cottage. Thanks to the appointment of former Leicester City boss, Claudio Ranieri, at Fulham, both sides will be managed by previous Premier League winners. Manuel Pellegrini (Manchester City) will be in the West Ham United dugout. 
 
West Ham United travel to West London in fine form, winning three successive league games. Not since February 2014 have the Hammers achieved four in a row. 
 
Marko Arnautovic has missed West Ham’s past few games through injuries but Mexican forward, Javier Hernandez, has stepped in to ensure his absence has not been noticed. Chicharito has scored three goals in three games for West Ham. 
 
Like most sides near the foot of the Premier League table, Fulham’s chances of survival hinge on retaining a solid home record. Since Ranieri took charge, Fulham have claimed four points from a possible six. They have won this fixture on three of the last four occasions. 
 
Match odds 
Fulham - 19/10 
Draw - 12/5 
West Ham United - 11/8 
 
Prediction 
2-4

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