There are some tough fixtures in the Premier League on Saturday, with a number of very hard games to call from a betting point of view. With value in mind, we’ve picked out two games that could end all square – Burnley’s home tie with Watford and Bournemouth’s trip to Crystal Palace.
The Clarets and the Hornets are having exceptional seasons and currently occupy 7th and places 8th in the Premier League. Burnley remain on the heels of the top six despite losing 1-0 to both Arsenal and Leicester in recent weeks, while Watford hold their position in the top half after a defeat to Manchester United and a draw with Spurs in the last two.
Crystal Palace are off the bottom of the table after a run of four games without defeat, but the Eagles are struggling to turn draws into wins. Roy Hodgson’s side have drawn three of their last four Premier League games, the last two ending 0-0. They go up against a Bournemouth team which is five points and four places superior ahead of the weekend game. The Cherries have only lost once in the last six games and have drawn two of the last three.
In Saturday’s early kick off, West Ham welcome champions Chelsea to the London stadium for a fiery London derby. David Moyes’ Hammers are yet to show improved results since his arrival, but at least they performed better in their most recent outing at Manchester City. There are no easy games in the Premier League though and with Arsenal next on the fixture list, West Ham could be heading into Christmas in the relegation zone. There will be no favours from Chelsea, who are hitting form and need points to try and close a 13-point gap on Man City at the top.
Burnley v Watford
The draw at Turf Moor is odds of +220 with BetVictor and both high-flyers may have to settle for the point.
Burnley’s home form has been solid this season, they have a record of 3-2-2 from seven games, but there have been just 8 goals in those matches. That’s the fewest amount of goals scored on any ground in the Premier League this season. West Ham and Huddersfield have ground out draws at the Clarets, while Arsenal and West Brom are the only teams to come away with three points. Sean Dyche has overseen victories against Palace, Newcastle and Swansea.
Watford have been far better on their travels than at home this season, so they might well be looking forward to another away day. Their record from seven games on the road so far is 4-1-2, bringing them a healthy 13 points. They were unbeaten away from home until back-to-back defeats at Chelsea and Everton, but they were back to winning ways with a 3-0 win at Newcastle. The Hornets acquitted themselves well in the last two against Man United and Spurs, and are fancied to share the spoils on Saturday.
West Ham v Chelsea
We’re backing both teams to score here at -115 with BetVictor as Moyes’ West Ham reach for an unlikely victory and Chelsea play at their ruthless best.
Eden Hazard was on target twice in the 3-1 win over Newcastle and his form has contributed to Chelsea’ run of seven without defeat. The only two draws in that sequence were against Liverpool and Atletico Madrid, with the other five resulting in wins. The Blues will have earmarked three points from this one but won’t underestimate a West Ham side which tends to raise its game for derbies.
The Hammers biggest problem this season has been defence and it’s nine games since they last kept a clean sheet. They do have a habit of scoring in home games though, hitting the mark in all but one of seven home matches this term in league and cup. Moyes is tasked with keeping his side in the division and needs to start picking up points soon. His pragmatic style suggests he will take a safety-first approach to this game, but as his tactics showed against Man City, his side will be set up to make the most of any opportunities.
Crystal Palace v Bournemouth
Finally, another draw could be on the cards at Selhurst Park when Palace entertain Bournemouth. Odds of +250 about the stalemate are available with BetVictor
Palace have drawn their last two games 0-0 against Brighton and West Brom and while clean sheets are a bonus, the Eagles need to start getting wins on the board if they are to stay up. They have won three of the last five home games, and this will be seen as a vital chance to get three points, but they’ve been held at home by Everton and West Ham and Bournemouth will be tough opponents.
The Cherries have taken points from their last three away trips – from wins at Stoke and Newcastle and a 0-0 draw at Swansea. Eddie Howe will also have pinpointed this game as one to get a result from due to the importance of maintaining a gap above a relegation rival. They’ll be hard to break down and are good enough to come away with a point.
Burnley and Watford to Draw
Saturday 9th December, 15:00 GMT
West Ham v Chelsea – Both teams to score
Saturday 9th December, 12:30 GMT
Crystal Palace and Bournemouth to Draw
Saturday 9th December, 15:00 GMT