Another weekend of football is upon and we have a mixture of European football on display this weekend. The Champions League returns next week, and perhaps this shall impact on some team selections? Time will tell. Dave Tindall has previewed our Saturday evening Pick 4 Correct Score pool, which is gunning for a jackpot of £7,500. Get involved in his ticket here.
Real Madrid v Real Sociedad
On Wednesday night, Real take on PSG in the first leg of their mouthwatering Champions League last 16 showdown and, given their obsession with the prestigious European tournament, Zinedine Zidane may not want to take risks.
There’s a flipside though; Zidane may see the benefits of going into that game off the back of a rousing win here.
Zidane has a full squad to choose from and, despite their patchy form, Real are still the second highest scorers in Spain so it’s fair to expect goals. Sociedad bang them in at an impressive rate too and, despite lying 14th, are the fourth most prolific side with 41 goals from 22 games.
This definitely looks an Over 2.5 game and, in fact, Over 3.5 goals is a big contender so I’ll focus mainly on those scorelines featuring at least four goals.
Check out Real Madrid’s form here.
Prediction: 2-1, 3-1, 3-2, Other Home Win, Other Draw
Napoli v Lazio betting preview
It’s first plays third in Serie A on Saturday evening but let’s bear in mind that 14 points separate leaders Napoli from visitors Lazio.
The men from Naples have won eight of their last nine games and registered 10 goals in their last four home starts (all wins).
Notably, they’ve scored over three goals in a home game just once in 17 matches and a trawl through Napoli’s results shows them netting either three goals (on seven occasions) or two goals (five times) in 12 of their 17 starts at Stadio San Paolo.
Lazio are the second top scorers in the division with 58 goals from 23 matches and no team have scored more away goals. As you might expect, they’ve been less prolific against the top sides and come into this one on the back of two defeats and a draw, scoring just two goals across those three matches.
Napoli have won four of the last five meetings and I’m with them again here. Given the above stats, a 3-1 win for the hosts looks the sweet spot and I’ll play a few results either side of that.
Prediction: 2-1, 3-0, 3-1, 3-1, Other Home Win
Huddersfield v Bournemouth
Huddersfield are without a single point in five Premier League matches in 2018 – a stark contrast to Bournemouth, whose haul of 11 since the turn of the year is only bettered by Spurs and Man Utd.
Eddie Howe’s visitors, who now sit ninth, have already beaten Huddersfield 4-0 this term and that was the scoreline when this pair last met in West Yorkshire – the opening day of the 2014/15 season in the Championship.
While all form lines point to Bournemouth, it’s worth noting that the Cherries have conceded in 15 of their last 16 matches so it makes sense to give Huddersfield a goal. It could just be enough to earn David Wagner’s team a much-needed point but I’ll lean more towards a Bournemouth win with both teams scoring.
Prediction: 1-1, 1-2, 1-3
Newcastle v Man Utd
St. James’ Park has been a happy hunting ground for Man Utd down the years and they’ve won nine and drawn three of the last 13 in front of the Toon Army.
The case of another three points for the visitors is strengthened by Newcastle’s current miserable form which shows eight home games without a win. They’ve lost five of those although only Leicester have scored more than two goals at St. James’ this season so the Magpies haven’t been getting caned. Newcastle do not have any impending European or Cup fixtures so they can fully focus on this game.
Rafa Benitez and Jose Mourinho are two pragmatic coaches so I’d be playing Under 2.5 goals here. Man Utd have kept clean sheets in seven of their last eight matches so logic leads us to a 1-0 or 2-0 win for the Mancunians. Four of Man Utd’s last six wins have been by those two scorelines.
Prediction: 0-1, 0-2
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