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English Premier League Returns: Gameweek 30 Preview


After a three-month absence due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the greatest league on the planet returns this Wednesday in a double header blockbuster, which sees Mikel Arteta returning to his old home, Manchester City, where his Arsenal side come up against the man he learnt so much from in Pep Guardiola. Two days later, the race for the European spots heat up as Jose Mourinho welcomes his old team, Manchester United, to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London. Elsewhere, Liverpool were made to wait for their first league title in the Premier League era, but they could go one step closer against their bitter rivals, Everton, at Goodison Park this Sunday. After what has felt like the longest three months in football history, let’s get back into the action, starting at Villa Park!


Standings provided by Sofascore LiveScore

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Wednesday 17 June

Aston Villa 9/4
Draw 23/10
Sheffield United 5/4
(19:00)

Aston Villa have a huge chance to move out of the bottom three when they host fellow Premier League newcomers, Sheffield United. The Blades have felt nothing like newcomers, though, as they could move up to fifth spot with a win here. Perhaps the break came at the best possible time for Aston Villa after they had suffered four consecutive defeats before the interval. Now, they’ll welcome one of their best players back from injury in John McGinn. It will be interesting to see if Sheffield United can continue their superb display – my gut feeling says that reality will start to kick in and they could see themselves drop down a few places during the course of the next nine games. My money is on Villa at a valuable 9/4.

Manchester City 7/20
Draw 9/2
Arsenal 13/2
(21:15)


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Friday 19 June

Norwich City 22/10
Draw 26/10
Southampton 12/10
(19:00)

Norwich have shown that they were ready for the fight as they hope to avoid the drop in their first season back in the Premier League. The Canaries are still six points off safety, but anything is still possible with nine games to go. At home, Daniel Farke’s men were decent in the past two months before the COVID-19 pandemic, losing just one of their last five encounters, which came in a 1-0 defeat against Liverpool. Southampton suffered four defeats in five matches as they went down 1-0 at home to Newcastle back in March. With the Saints now finding themselves in a comfort zone from relegation, I’d back Norwich here at 22/10.

Tottenham 37/20
Draw 24/10
Manchester United 15/10
(21:15)


Saturday 20 June

Watford 23/10
Draw 49/20
Leicester City 23/20
(13:30)

After a lengthy lay-off, Watford return to Vicarage Road where they have fond memories of their last home tie. The Hornets ended Liverpool’s 44-game unbeaten run in emphatic fashion in their last home game, smashing the champions-elect 3-0. That result proved that, on their day, Watford are capable of causing an upset against any team in the division. Leicester City ended their four-match winless run with a resounding 4-0 victory against Aston Villa before the break. Jamie Vardy announced his return to the squad with a brace that day, making him the league’s outright leading scorer with 19 goals. Back Both Teams to Score at 7/10.

Brighton 5/2
Draw 49/20
Arsenal 11/10
(16:00)

Brighton’s winless run in the league stretched to nine games before the break, although Graham Potter will look to give his side a fresh start as they look to avoid getting sucked into a relegation battle. Their form at the Amex Stadium hasn’t been too pleasing, though, as the Seagulls have won just one of their last eight home encounters. Before the game against Manchester City, Arsenal were the only unbeaten team in the Premier League since the start of the new year and won their last three league ties. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was also in superb form before the break and could look to use this clash to get closer to the 20-goal mark for the campaign. Put your money on the Away Totals – Over 1.5 Goals at 11/10.

West Ham 49/20
Draw 47/20
Wolves 23/20
(18:30)

Saturday’s evening kick-off is in London as West Ham hope to pick themselves up and avoid being sucked into the relegation zone. The Hammers have used the break to welcome back Jack Wilshere from injury, who will add some much-needed grit in midfield against a side like Wolves. Nuno Espirito Santo’s side are unbeaten in their last five encounters, keeping clean sheets in four of those ties, including against the likes of Manchester United and Leicester City. In Wolves’ last away game, they came from behind to beat Tottenham 3-2. Back the away win at 23/20.

Bournemouth 15/10
Draw 9/4
Crystal Palace 39/20
(20:45)

Bournemouth stayed in the drop zone after their winless run continued to four matches. They did, however, give a good account of themselves against Liverpool before the break, and perhaps were disappointed with the scoreline after two errors led to the Reds’ goals. That may have also highlighted that the Cherries always have a mistake or two in them. Crystal Palace’s rhythm may be disrupted after the Eagles claimed their third victory on the trot when they beat Watford 1-0. It was their third 1-0 victory in succession, which saw Roy Hodgson’s men climb up to 11th on the table. Bournemouth’s last clean sheet in the league came back in December, when they beat Chelsea 1-0. At 5/10, Crystal Palace on the Win/Draw Double Chance seems the best bet.

Sunday 21 June

Newcastle United 24/10
Draw 43/20
Sheffield United 13/10
(15:00)

Sheffield United just won’t go away. Or will they? As mentioned before, it will be interesting to see how the Blades respond after a three-month lay-off. Chris Wilder’s men have been consistent throughout the campaign, and have lost just twice away from home at the time of writing – against Liverpool and Manchester City – who happen to be arguably the two best teams in Europe at the moment. Newcastle ended their five-game unbeaten run with a 1-0 win at Southampton, although, Steve Bruce’s men did have a man extra for majority of the tie. Take the away win.

Aston Villa 47/10
Draw 33/10
Chelsea 11/20
(17:15)

Had this game taken place before the break caused by the coronavirus, one would have expected an easy Chelsea win after the Blues had just turned the corner with a three-game unbeaten run, trouncing the likes of Tottenham and Everton, while Aston Villa had lost four in a row. Now, there seems to be no certainties as it remains to be seen how teams will respond from the lengthy lay-off. Chelsea seemed to have used the spare time wisely as they look to build a much better side for next season, while it also gave the neutrals a hint that Frank Lampard could clear out a lot of the players he inherited from previous managers. The way both teams set up actually suits each other, so perhaps we could be in for a goal fest here. Personally, I think this one could be the best game for the neutrals in the opening week of Premier League football. Back Over 3.5 Goals at 14/10.

Everton 9/2
Draw 32/10
Liverpool 6/10
(20:00)

The longest-running top-flight derby takes place on Sunday night as Everton welcome Liverpool to Goodison Park in what is expected to be a fiery Merseyside derby. Carlo Ancelotti already has some rivalry with Liverpool after he notoriously suffered a UEFA Champions League defeat in the final after leading 3-0 at half-time while at AC Milan. Ancelotti has done well since he took over the Toffees, but has lost three games against the big guns – most recently against Chelsea, where his side were smashed 4-0 before the stoppage of football in England. Liverpool have beaten Everton twice already this term, and know that without fans in the stadium to act as the 12th man for the Toffees, it could be a case of the team with the most quality winning on the day. I fancy Jurgen Klopp’s men to get the job done at 6/10.

Monday 22 June

Manchester City 1/7
Draw 15/2
Burnley 16/1
(21:00)

Manchester City’s champions status tag was dragged out for another three months due to the coronavirus pandemic, but their borrowed time could soon be coming to an end. Its inevitable that Liverpool will be crowned champions, but for now, all City can do is prolong the Reds’ celebrations with another ridiculous winning streak, like last season where they ended the campaign off with 14 successive wins. Burnley have been a remarkable team to watch this season and have even bullied their way past some of the big guns. Now though, City might be using this fixture to build momentum going into their Champions League tie with Real Madrid. Take Man City to Win to Nil here at 17/20.

TREBLE @ 15/2
Norwich Win 22/10
Watford vs Leicester BTTS 7/10
Liverpool Win 6/10

Written by Jesse Nagel 

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