Commodore's EPL Picks

Things hit a new low over the weekend, with a diabolical weekend all-round. Were it not for Yaya Toure I may have considered packing it all in. I hear chess is a fairly risk free game.

The Premier League got the better of me, and all that could’ve gone wrong did. The first rule of betting is to bet with your head, not your heart.

Liverpool put a dagger through the latter after I lumped on both teams to score and they kept their first clean sheet away from home in months.

Forget the clinical analysis this week, Premier League teams are too desperate right now to sit around reading history books, and so am I.

Villa score four, Pardew throws a headbutt, Liverpool keep a clean sheet - the world has gone crazy. Only those willing to do the same will succeed.

West Brom 38/10 draw 27/10 Man United 7/10 
With the FA Cup returning to the fold this weekend there are only five Premier League fixtures in which to test out my newfound approach. We open with Manchester United travelling to the Hawthorns in the depths of their worst season for two decades. Rumours last week that Moyes was about to lose his job were premature at best, but he certainly is trying his best to get the sack. His twitchy and nervous nature has translated into his team and they look a side paralyzed by fear at the moment. West Brom should have the same fears seeing as they currently sit just a point above the drop zone. It is that desperation though that triggers memorable performances and for that reason I’m going with a home win at 38/10. United are terrible at the moment, and I can’t see them getting any points here. 

Cardiff 5/4 draw 24/10 Fulham 21/10
If ever there was a relegation six-pointer, this is it. Second-bottom plays bottom when Fulham travel to Wales to face Ole Gunnar Solskjaers motley crew. The loser here will be playing Championship football next season, that much is certain. Felix Magath set himself six wins from twelve games to save Fulham - well two have passed without a victory. Andre Schurrle tore his side to pieces on Saturday and despite a late Heitinga goal his side still prop up the table. Cardiff meanwhile showed admirable qualities to keep Spurs to the single goal, but that is about as far as the compliments go. They still look a side incapable of finding the goals that might fire them to safety, having managed only 19 in 28 games so far. I don’t expect this to be a classic, with the odd goal enough to nick it. Back under 2.5 goals at 17/20 and move on.

Crystal Palace 24/10 draw 9/4 Southampton 12/10
Bloody Southampton. One goal, that’s all I was asking for. Following their resounding thumping against Liverpool, the Saints have a chance to make up some ground on Newcastle when they travel to Selhurst Park on Saturday. Southampton have little left to play for, making them the perfect team to bet against in the run in. Palace on the other hand are scrapping for their survival and with Tony Pulis on the sideline driving them forward they look a good bet to stay up. Having notched up a valuable point against Swansea, a victory over the Saints will push them well clear of safety. Pulis took it upon himself to fine Chamakh and Thomas for their dives last weekend, and despite my dislike for his teams’ style of football, I applaud his management on that regard. Palace are difficult as all hell to beat at Selhurst and I’m going for another home win here, priced generously at 24/10.

Norwich 12/10 draw 24/10 Stoke City 9/4
Norwich are another team that aren’t in my good books at the moment. I sang the praises of Chris Hughton last week only to have his side concede four against a team that hadn’t scored in 300 minutes of football. How do you predict something like that? As it sits, they are currently four points clear of the drop so you can expect another terrible performance from them. Their visitors this weekend will be riding the wave after their momentous victory over Arsenal. Despite all this Stoke remains the worst team on the road in the Premier League. They’ve won only once away from the Britannia all season, so despite my distrust for Norwich at present I’m edging toward a home win.

Chelsea 11/20 draw 28/10 Tottenham 52/10
Closing out Saturday’s action, Chelsea can open up a seven-point lead at the top if they manage to see off London rivals Spurs at Stamford Bridge. Tottenham have their own agenda, and if they fail to pick up points they can probably kiss away any chance they have of playing Champions League next term. Unfortunately for them, I don’t give them much chance. They were about as inspiring as a wet cloth against Cardiff and despite having the better of the Blues earlier this campaign, Mourinho’s men have been clinically dismantling opponents in recent weeks. A cup loss to Manchester City apart and their last few weeks have been near perfect. Chelsea have dropped points only twice at home all season and given the way they approach big games, there’s little chance of them making it thrice. They may only be priced at 11/20, but they certainly are one of the bets of the weekend.

With so little in the way of Premier League, perhaps a brief dissection of the FA Cup is in order.

Wigan and Manchester City meet in a repeat of last seasons final and the Latics will be hoping to pull off another miracle.

There will be no miracles here my dear readers, as the returning Sergio Aguero looks to make up for lost time.

As for the other all-Premier league clashes, I fancy Sunderland to book another trip to Wembley against a Hull City side that will have to try make do without Jelavic and Long.

Poyet has built a cup side capable of reaching another final, mark my words.

I’m going to steer clear of the Arsenal match for obvious reasons and amongst the lower-league teams I fancy Sheffield United to get up against Charlton.

Before I start making some more ludicrous predictions founded on little other than indignation and a whim I must be on my way. Sala Kahle.

Written by Commodore Vegas
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Commodore’s Weekend Picks
West Brom WIN 38/10
Cardiff Und 2.5 Goals 17/20
Crystal Palace WIN 24/10
Norwich WIN 12/10
Chelsea WIN 11/20