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Commodore's EPL Picks

Claudio Ranieri celebrates the English Premier League title with his Leicester City team
It’s time to bid farewell to what has been one helluva Premier League season.

It’s time to bid farewell to what has been one helluva Premier League season. After falling out of love with the league last season, the passion is back. How could it not be? A world where Leicester can be the champions of England is one I want to live in. Hell, maybe next season will actually be Liverpool’s season! The possibilities are endless. But before I head off for a summer of international football and endless transfer speculation, there’s one more weekend to get through. So for one last time, let’s be havin' it.

Sunday 15 May

1/6 Arsenal | Draw 57/10 | Aston Villa 16/1 (16:00)

A season that offered so much hope for Arsenal fans could conclude with them below Spurs in the league standings. At least they aren’t Aston Villa. The midlands club will bid farewell to the Premier League on Sunday and it might be a while before we see them again. Their final act of retribution was to pretty much send Newcastle down with them. The bastards. 

Unfortunately, there is very little to play for here and I expect that to tell. The Gunners have scored 14 goals and conceded none in the last four meetings between these teams. This should follow suit. 

Back Arsenal to Win-To-Nil and move along.

Olivier Giroud - Arsenal FC

21/20 Chelsea | 5/2 | Leicester 26/10 (16:00)

Misses penalty to win the Champions League. Misses game when Chelsea do win the Champions League. Misses last ever game for the club. Ladies and gentlemen, John Terry. It’s hard to feel sorry for him. Instead, his farewell will be turned into a homecoming of sorts for Claudio Ranieri, who will walk out at Stamford Bridge a Premier League champion. 

As for the match itself, there looks to be only one winner. The Foxes have a chance to secure the biggest title-winning margin since 2000. Chelsea just lost to Sunderland. 

For one last time, I’m backing the Foxes – and they are still somehow 26/10. When will the bookies learn?

19/20 Everton | 26/10 | Norwich 28/10 (16:00)

Norwich City could well be down by the time you read this article. With Sunderland hosting Everton on Wednesday, their fate is in the hands of Roberto Martinez’s side. So they’re pretty much doomed. The good news is they could sign-off with a victory at Goodison Park on Sunday. 

The Toffees are undoubtedly the biggest underachievers this season. With a talented squad of powerhouse footballers, to finish in the bottom half is unacceptable. The players have lost faith and the crowd have done the same. Martinez has to go, but not before he leads them to a draw against Norwich. 

I’ll go one step further and back the Everton-Draw HT-FT Double at 47/10. Now there’s a punt.

7/20 Manchester United | 4/1 | Bournemouth 8/1 (16:00)

Whatever Manchester United’s result with West Ham on Tuesday, they’ll require a home win against Bournemouth at Old Trafford if they’re to finish in the top four. I have little doubt they’ll achieve victory, albeit in a fairly unspectacular manner. It’s been a strange old season at the Theatre of Dreams. Not many United fans are pleased with how it’s gone, but a top four finish and a trophy might tide them over for another season. Somehow, Louis van Gaal has done enough to earn another season in the hot seat. 

Expect another low-key victory on Sunday, probably by the odd goal.

19/10 Newcastle | 26/10 | Tottenham 5/4 (16:00)

Now Sunday’s meeting between Spurs and Newcastle at St James’ Park could well be rendered irrelevant if Sunderland see off Everton midweek. The Magpies fluffed their lines badly at Villa Park last weekend and will be hoping they get another chance to set things right. 

Spurs know a thing or two about fluffed lines, having made a horrible mess of the title run-in. Without Dele Alli and Mousa Dembele this is not the same side. I fear they might even finish below Arsenal yet again. Andros Townsend to get the winner anyone? 

Newcastle to win 1-0 at 19/2 – I’ll have a sneaky tenner on that.

Newcastle United

9/20 Southampton | 34/10 | Crystal Palace 6/1 (16:00)

Southampton are probably the best side in the league at present. That second goal against Spurs was simply glorious. Shane Long looks a world-beater, while there hardly seems to be a weak spot in their make-up at present. Palace stand no chance on Sunday. The Saints have won six of their last eight matches, including victories over Liverpool, Man City and Spurs. 

Palace may have won both previous meetings this season, but their focus is surely on the cup final. 

The Saints look a tad short at 9/20, so I’ll be going with the HT-FT Double at 21/20. This will be one-way traffic.

15/10 Stoke | 24/10 | West Ham 7/4 (16:00)

West Ham effectively blew their chances of a top four finish with a terrible display against Swansea in their penultimate match at the Boleyn Ground. Perhaps the occasion got the better of them. After what will be a highly emotional final outing on Tuesday, Slaven Bilic will have to lift his players for a trip to Stoke. He’ll have the lure of Europa League football to help him along and with the Saints snapping at their heels, West Ham will need nothing but a win. 

Fortunately for them, Stoke’s season is over. Of course, it was last year too when they whipped Liverpool 6-1 in Steven Gerrard’s final game. Stoke don’t give a damn. 

I’d steer clear here – too much could go wrong.

42/10 Swansea | 33/10 | Manchester City 6/10 (16:00)

Next on the agenda is Man City’s visit to the Liberty where they will look to save their wretched season. Unfortunately for them, they have a bang in-form Swansea side between them and Champions League football. The Swans have done the job on West Ham and Liverpool in recent weeks and sit above City in the form table. Manuel Pellegrini couldn’t care less. Neither can Yaya Toure. Both will be off to new pastures come the off-season where there probably will be Champions League football. 

City really should be winning this game – but isn’t that the story of their season? 

I fancy Sergio Aguero to get on the scoresheet, but the Swans to come out on top. At 42/10, it really is a great price.

16/10 Watford | 24/10 | Sunderland 31/20 (16:00)

Watford’s slew of continental players already have their minds elsewhere. That much was clear as they meandered around Anfield on Sunday, put away by Liverpool’s “B” side. This weekend they will face a fired-up Sunderland side and there looks to be only one outcome. 

The Black Cats have done it again. That’s 10 uninterrupted years in the top flight. Some feat for a side that constantly flirts with relegation. I was spot on with my Fabio Borini punt last week and will take some of my winnings on a repeat. 

Borini to score and Sunderland to win? You bet.

31/20 West Brom | 26/10 | Liverpool 15/10 (16:00)

Finally we come to perhaps the most trivial match on the final day – West Brom v Liverpool. The Baggies are safe for another season, Liverpool have a European final to focus on; neither really want to be playing this match. Earlier this season Jurgen Klopp and players were roundly criticised for celebrating a 2-2 draw at home against Tony Pulis’ side. They won’t be making that mistake again. 

Liverpool haven’t won at the Hawthorns since 2011 when Andy Carroll and Charlie Adams were the heroes for Roy Hodgson’s team. Dark times. 

I’m going for yet another draw between these two, which comes in at 26/10.

EPL Picks
Arsenal WIN-TO-NIL 8/10
Leicester WIN 26/10
Everton HT-FT DRAW 47/10
Man United WIN 7/20
Newcastle CORRECT SCORE (1-0) 19/2
Southampton HT-FT WIN 21/20
Swansea WIN 42/10
Sunderland WIN 31/20
West Brom DRAW 26/10

Written by Commodore Vegas