FIFA Club World Cup – Chelsea vs Palmeiras – Chelsea & Under 3.5 @ 2.10
Chelsea will look to complete the dynasty by beating Palmeiras and winning the Club World Cup, ultimately the last major trophy Chelsea have not won.
Chelsea lost their only final appearance in 2012 to Corinthians, which they will be desperate not to repeat.
There’s undoubtedly a gulf in class here, and with Chelsea struggling in front of goal for most of this season, including in their most recent semi final clash, so we’re happy to take them to win and under 3.5 goals here. 1 unit
English Premier League – Watford vs. Brighton and Hove Albion1x2 – Brighton and Hove Albion @ 2.17
We hate to go against Stake’s own Hornets in this clash at Vicarage Road, but the price for Brighton to take all three points here is a little too appetising to pass up.
Graham Potter has done a fantastic job steering his side to sit 9th place on the table as it stands – they don’t score often, but their excellent work at the back puts them in good stead for each fixture.
Enter Watford; a team that have had no trouble scoring goals against superior sides all season but are sometimes comically bad at the back.
They’ve conceded 41 goals in 22 matches and sit second bottom in the league without a win in their last 11 competitive fixtures.
Brighton have the defensive acumen to counter Watford’s attacking threat, and the defensive woes of the Hornets should allow them greater avenue to goal than they often have.
With Watford on their third manager of the season, we fancy Brighton to win this one away from home. 1 unit
Bundesliga – Bayer Leverkusen vs VfB Stuttgart – Leverkusen Total – Over 2.5 @ 2.27
Leverkusen have been on a roll over the last few weeks, with a 5-2 win away at Borussia Dortmund cementing their credentials for a Champions League finish this season.
The deadly frontline of Patrik Schick, Florian Wirtz, Moussa Diaby and Karim Bellarabi has helped Die Werkself into 3rd and a very strong position, given their next fixtures.
They travel away to Mainz on the 18th, a ground they have had much success at in recent times with three wins from their last three trips.
A home fixture against relegation-threatened Arminia Bielefeld follows that, but this next match at home to Stuttgart is where we focus our attention.
The visitors are on a three-game losing streak and currently are four points away from the relegation-playoff spot in 16th, held by Augsburg.
To make matters worse, four of their last five contests against Leverkusen have been losses, with two and three-goal losses in 2021 at home and away respectively.
After netting five away in Dortmund and five the week before against Augsburg, we’ll back them to get three or more here against a Stuttgart side who need to start taking risks should they remain in the top flight next season. 1 unit
A-League – Melbourne Victory vs Newcastle Jets -1 x 2 Melbourne Victory @ 1.99
With their recent FFA Cup success in the bag, Melbourne Victory can now re-focus again on their league campaign.
They’re currently four points behind first place, but with two games in hand they’ll be feeling confident against 10th placed Jets.
Victory’s list will only strengthen with the likes of Miranda, Spiranovic and Kruse expected to all be available after recent injuries.
With almost a full squad to choose from, the Tony Popovic inspired revival looks set to continue.
Jets have been inconsistent so far, and can’t quite seem to settle on their preferred starting attackers.
Two points from three away games so far this season is also indicative of how they’ve travelled so far.
Think this is generous odds for a Victory home game match. 1 unit
English Premier League – Everton Vs Leeds – 1×2 Leeds @ 3.15
‘Frank Lampard’s Everton’ came crashing back down to earth midweek, losing 3-1 to relegation rivals Newcastle after their 4-1 FA Cup victory over Brentford at the weekend.
The result matched the performance in a game Newcastle thoroughly deserved to win.
Looking at the form guide for Everton it’s easy to see why the Toffees hierarchy decided that a change of manager was needed, with only one win, two draws and 11 defeats from the last 14 games.
If they hadn’t had a decent start to the season they’d most likely be bottom of the table rather than a couple of points above the relegation places.
They face a Leeds team fresh off a mad 3-3 draw away at Aston Villa, where they led 1-0 before going 3-1 down and finally coming back to draw 3-3.
There certainly seems to be more intensity to Leeds play since the turn of the year, no doubt aided by the return of several first teamer’s from injury, and although Patrick Bamford is still out injured, Dan James certainly stepped up against Villa, scoring 2 of Leeds goals and running Tyrone Mings ragged in the process.
Everton are struggling defensively for this one, having lost Yerry Mina to injury against Newcastle who is now expected to miss out against Leeds as a result. Lucas Digne replacement Vitaly Mykolenko is also a doubt at left back, as is Demariai Gray and Abdoulaye Doucoure.
The only fresh injury concern for Leeds is Mateusz Klich who picked up a slight knock at the back end of the Villa game, but with Adam Forshaw back from injury they have ample cover in the centre of the park.
I’m not convinced this one is priced up correctly.
The jury’s out on Lampard as a manager, they have several key players missing through the spine of the team and without a recognised left back, Leeds star player Raphinha (who dominated on this ground last season) could have an absolute field day.
Leeds at 3.15 looks a bet to me. 1.5 units
Championship – Birmingham City v Luton Town – 1v2 Luton Town @ 2.5
Birmingham have won just twice in their last 16 matches – with one of those being the simplest task in the league – a home game against Barnsley.
The Blues will be without Taylor Richards and Troy Deeney.
Jefferson Lerma may also be suspended but it sounds likely they will appeal his suspension.
Luton are expected to continue unchanged from their midweek win at home to Barnsley.
This win was their seventh in nine games and has moved them into eighth position, one point outside the playoffs.
The only teams they’ve not beat on this run are third placed Forest and fourth placed Sheff. Utd. The 2.5 looks too big in my opinion. 1 unit
Counter-Strike – I EM Katowice – Copenhagen Flames vs Fnatic – Winner Copenhagen Flames @ 2.6
With the Play-In stage of the IEM Katowice tournament being in Best of 1 format, this will be an interesting match to watch.
The up and coming Tier 2 team Copenhagen Flames haven’t had the best form this year, however, they have shown in the past that they can compete against top tier 1 teams.
They have already won against the likes of FaZe, Heroic, Astralis, Gambit as well as Fnatic on two occasions.
With Fnatic’s recent form also being quite poor, now currently on a 4 match losing streak, Copenhagen Flames @ 2.60 looks like a decent bet. 0.5 units
UFC – Israel Adesanya Vs Robert Whittaker 2 – Will the fight go the distance? Yes @ $1.94
An ANZAC rivalry will head UFC 271 this weekend as reigning, defending UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya puts his belt on the line in a much anticipated rematch with Australia’s first ever UFC Champion Robert Whittaker.
Their first clash came over two years ago in Melbourne, Australia with Adesanya stunning the world by dropping Whittaker at the end of the first round and finishing him in the second.
With that experience under their belt we’ve already heard this week from both camps to expect very different game plans here.
Whittaker is far less likely to rush in as he did in their first contest which means he’s less chance of taking a seminal blow from the precision puncher standing across the Octagon.
Add the fact that Adesanya loves to fight at range and use his counter weapons.
For that reason expect a relatively slow start to this one and the more than likely outcome is that we see each fighter using their tools to accumulate damage in hopes of winning each round rather than anything flashy to end the fight.
Under those circumstances this fight is ripe to go to a decision and the fact we can get near even money about that result looks juicy to say the least. 3 units
English Premier League – Manchester United v Southampton – 1×2 Man Utd @ 1.62
Manchester United have had a woeful season so far, but I am still backing them to win at home vs Southampton this weekend.
While this does go completely against recent form, with Southampton coming into this match off the back of a couple fantastic results, drawing to Man City and winning away at Tottenham midweek, and Manchester United having drawn their last two games against lowly Middlesbrough and Burnley.
But Man Utd’s best performances this season have been when they have had their backs against the wall, following some poor results, and I think the team will be fired up to make up for last weeks draws.
With a stern word from Rangnick and playing at home, with Pogba back in the squad, and Ronaldo returning, I think they should prove too strong for Southampton here. 1 units
La Liga – Deportivo Alaves vs Valencia – 1×2 Valencia @ 2.55
After a hefty loss against Elche last week, Alaves now face a mediocre Valencia who have struggled to keep a winning form this season but have played well enough to remain mid table.
Nevertheless, Valencia have shown quality in brief moments with some of the star players changing games by individual brilliance.
Alaves on the other hand, have struggled to show any type of brilliance and their results are explicit proof of that fact.
Although Valencia have not proven their worth this season so far, they have still managed to secure important results and there is no doubt they have enough quality in their squad to come out triumphant against a poor Alaves who are winless after 11 straight games.1×2 Valencia @ 2.55 is a bargain that shouldn’t be missed. 1.5 units
English Premier League – Newcastle v Aston Villa – Both Teams To Score Yes @ 1.65
The Toon bandwagon is rolling into top gear off the back of two wins from two, and this weekend they welcome Aston Villa to St James’ in what should be a barnstorming encounter.
Both teams played out thrilling games in midweek and both have scored at least once in their last four games.
Phillipe Coutinho looks an outstanding acquisition while Newcastle’s January signings have begun well too.
It’s difficult to predict which way this one will go but goals should be on the menu and both teams finding the net looks a solid bet here. 1 unit
NFL – Cincinnati Bengals vs. Los Angeles Rams – LAR -4 @1.95
Entering 2021, Matthew Stafford and Joe Burrow each had zero playoff wins.
This will be the 7th Super Bowl between starting QBs with no playoff wins prior to that season and in 5 of the previous 6 instances, the NFC QB has gone on to lift the Lombardi.
Super Bowl matchups = more time to prepare and so I’m predicting a matchup where points will be at a premium, despite two explosive offenses.
With the Cincinnati team total at 21.5, the Rams are 14-1 on the season when limiting opponents to 24 points or less.
Back the genius of Sean McVay to rewrite the script of his first Super Bowl appearance, where limiting a #20 redzone scoring Bengals will be the key to a two score victory. 2 units