Premiership football betting tips are given one of the following three ratings:
Banker, large stake, predicted outcome is more than likely.
Likely outcome, medium stake, worth a gamble.
Worth a flutter, small stake, be prudent and stick to matches where you can spot the value.
Below were the predicted outcomes for the weekend fixtures Sat 11th to Sun 12th March 2006.
|Sat 12:00||Birmingham v West Brom|
|A crucial derby game in prospect which can only explain the absurd midday kick off; get the game over and done with before the fans get too tanked. Only 1 place and 3 points separate these two either side of the relegation zone but Birmingham, who are fighting to get out, have a game in hand over the team above them. This game is a big six pointer and if the Blues can win they will force West Brom into the relegation places on goal difference; however, if they lose the gap between them and the Baggies will have grown to a massive 6 points. Birmingham have won 3 of their last 4 at home where as West Brom only have a single win and only 5 goals on their travels. Birmingham to win one of the most important games in the run in.|
|Home Win 1-0|
|Sat 12:45||Chelsea v Tottenham|
|First plays fourth in what should be an exciting game. Chelsea have only dropped 2 points at home all season and are unlikely to trip over against a Spurs side who are definitely on the up but can be less than convincing at times. Chelsea, as expected, have had their European run brought to an end by Barcelona but I doubt that will have any knock-on effect come Saturday; it will be business as usual for the Champions despite the absence of Robben after his 4 match ban. One factor to account for will be the Stamford Bridge pitch with the mudpatch likely to favour the home side as they're used to it, and Spurs are unlikely to get their game going. Spurs have been mediocre away from home with only 4 wins from 13 games and only 1 in the last 6. They will need strong characters in the midfield to upset Chelsea but Davids has not adjusted to the pace after his recent injury, whilst Brown and Davis are out on loan. Additionally, King had a dodgy game at the back against Blackburn but positives can always be found somewhere and Spurs have a match winner in Robbie Keane. It all adds up to another Chelsea win.|
|Home Win 2-0|
|Sat 3:00||Bolton v West Ham|
|Only 1 place separates these two in the chase for a European place; both are level on 42 points but Bolton have a game in hand. Bolton are notoriously difficult to beat at home with only 1 defeat in 12 games and the reason behind this is that their back four are strong and organised; conceding only 6 home goals tells the story. The 'happy' Hammers visit the Reebok and on current form they are happy indeed. They dropped 2 points at home to Everton last weekend but by all accounts they were not up to their usual standard so it seemed like a point gained rather than 2 lost. On the road they have 3 wins in their last 5 and Ashton and Harewood are likely to test the Bolton defence but it keeps coming back to the fact that Bolton have conceded very few goals at home; the least in the Premiership bar Liverpool. A tight game but Bolton should just edge it.|
|Home Win 1-0|
|Everton v Fulham|
|Everton showed their 'never say die' qualities at Upton Park and earned themselves a draw after dominating the game; after all, it's not often they've scored 2 or more goals in a game this season. Their home form of late has been good with 4 consecutive wins and Europe remains a distant possibility with only 5 points between themselves and 7th place. Their opponents this weekend, Fulham, are the only Premiership side yet to secure an away win and after their collapse at home against a young, rampant Arsenal their confidence at Goodison is likely to be fragile. Although with 1 or 2 more home wins they are likely to be safe, they have only taken 3 points from 14 away games and it looks like they will come unstuck against the Toffees.|
|Home Win 1-0|
|Portsmouth v Man City|
|Harry Redknapp looks certain to be the first manager to take different teams down from the Premiership in successive years and with a worse record than Alain Perrin he needs his players to dig in and show some pride. He's readily admitted that it's wins he needs now if they are to avoid the drop and it is fair to say that though their home form has been mixed it hasn't been impressive; 2 wins from 13 games just isn't enough although these have come in their last 6 home fixtures. Likewise City's away form has also been poor with only 3 away wins this season and only 1 point from their last 6 away fixtures. With Cole injured, Georgios Samaras is proving his value with a brace just last weekend and no doubt will be looking for more against Pompey. This one could go either way but Portsmouth should be fancied to get something; a point apiece seems about right.|
|Sunderland v Wigan|
|Oh dear Sunderland! The timing of McCarthy's sacking could not have been worse; Sunderland's relegation has looked inevitable for a while now and most thought they would have stuck with Mick again for next season's push back up to the Premiership, but they should have sorted it out earlier in the season and not with 10 games to go. Some of the players seem disillusioned with the decision, and still without a home win this season it looks increasingly unlikely they will get their first against an impressive Wigan side. Gary Breen's absence due to his ludicrous handball won't have helped matters. Wigan fully deserve their place in the top half of the Premiership and should bounce back with a win after some unfortunate results against United. Their defeats this season have only really come at the hands of the big boys in the Premiership while their performance against the weaker sides have generally been good; they don't take anyone for granted. Wigan should win this comfortably.|
|Away Win 0-2|
|Sat 5:15||Blackburn v Aston Villa|
|Blackburn played some really good stuff at White Hart Lane last Sunday and should have gone back to Ewood Park with all 3 points but events conspired against them and they left with nothing. Despite this, Mark Hughes should keep their spirits high as there were plenty of positives they could take from the game. Rovers have won 9 from 13 games at home this season, dropping only 2 points in their last 6, and it's the sort of form that will keep them in the hunt for a European place. Their opponents, Villa, have not lost in their last 6 away games but their season is rapidly drawing to a conclusion with nothing left to play for; it is unlikely they will be dragged into the relegation scrap and Europe looks out of sight. Their defensive crisis seems to have eased with Gareth Barry putting in another sterling performance prior to the World Cup, although they still have Delaney and Laursen out with knee injuries. If Villa were more clinical in front of goal they could get something at Ewood Park but Blackburn should prove too strong.|
|Home Win 2-1|
|Sun 1:30||Man Utd v Newcastle|
|Only Blackburn have visited Old Trafford this season and travelled home with all 3 points. United now have some silverware in the trophy cabinet after a drawing a big blank last season and they'll no doubt be pushing hard to get the automatic second place Champions League spot. Ironically, their early exit from Europe this season has probably helped them; especially considering their closest rivals for second spot, Liverpool, are bound to burn out at some point through sheer number of games. Not surprisingly, their opponents are a rejuvenated side under Roeder. He has gone back to basics and has been more fortunate than Souness with injuries. Their form of late has been good but they have lost 9 of their 14 away games this season and a visit to the Theatre of Dreams will be a true test of the extent of their improvement. Van Nistelrooy is bound to start this one and United should emerge victorious.|
|Home Win 2-0|
|Sun 3:00||Charlton v Middlesbrough|
|The last goal Charlton conceded at home was to Arsenal 6 games ago. This goes some way to explaining their turnaround in form but goals are still hard to come by; only Darren Bent has consistently hit the back of the net for them this season and if he's off colour they struggle. Only 5 home wins means they are once again facing a season of small returns and that's assuming their normal end of season collapse doesn't kick in. Boro are on the up again after a miserable spell but they only just beat Birmingham at the Riverside at the weekend where chances were few and far between. Viduka marked his return to the starting lineup with a goal but this may not be enough to guarantee him a starting place this weekend if Hasselbaink has recovered from illness. Boro have only 4 away wins and although 2 of these came in their most recent matches have they really got enough to take all 3 points at the Valley. I think not! A bore draw!|
|Sun 4:00||Arsenal v Liverpool|
|The only Premiership side to get through to the Champions League quarter finals have not done so well on the domestic front. If not for their home form (9 wins from 13 games) there would certainly be more fresh air between themselves and closest rivals Spurs. Arsenal will be aiming to do a Liverpool this time around and win the Champions League to guarantee themselves entry next time around as there is still a 5 point jump to fourth place. They have had their problems at the back this season but the likes of Senderos and Flamini deserve credit for coming in and playing their part; keeping Real Madrid out over 2 legs is no mean achievement. Things couldn't be more different for Liverpool and maybe the fixture overload is catching up with them. Out of Europe and only 5 wins on the road in the Premiership, the odds don't look good on Liverpool getting anything at Highbury. They create the chances but don't convert them and this is what has cost them this season. Hyypia could well return from injury but this is unlikely to be enough to prevent an Arsenal win.|
|Home Win 1-0|