Newcastle have adopted an unnecessary habit of periodically raising their fans’ blood pressure by first embarking on an extended run of victories before slipping up unexpectedly and crashing to a handful of defeats.
Surely this cannot happen at Burton Albion tomorrow though?
Rafa Benitez’s men travel down the M1 priced as Unibet’s 8/11 odds-on favourites to secure three points, whereas Nigel Clough’s charges kick off as 888sport’s massive 9/2 underdogs.
Punters expecting Newcastle to cruise to victory can get 6/4 (William Hill) against them retaining a clean sheet and 2/1 (Matchbook) about them winning while preventing the home side from scoring.
A number of punters anticipate a seasonal goalfest, however, hence the support for 888sport’s 4/6 odds chalked about the match yielding more than 2.5 goals, while Coral offer 7/2 against the Magpies enjoying a two-goal margin of victory.
Punters interested in covering all bases might also be inclined to back the same firm’s 19/5 odds for Newcastle to win by three or more goals.
Elsewhere, Matchbook rate the chances of Newcastle leading at the end of both halves as a 6/4 shot and 188bet chalk 6/1 against it ending 2-0 in the away team’s favour.
As teams prepare to play their final match prior to embarking on a traditionally packed Christmas schedule, we’ve reached a stage in the season where jockeying for position often becomes a serious quest for survival.
Sunderland are undoubtedly at that point and must seek to secure maximum points from Watford who visit the Stadium of Light.
Bookies expect them to: the Black Cats open as Betway’s 8/5 favourites to win, although the draw, priced at 12/5 by Ladbrokes, has been well backed.
Watford are becoming perennial over-achievers and arrive in town under no pressure, even though they’re priced as bet365’s 2/1 underdogs to register three points.
The match stats team at bettingexpert.com remind us of a similar scenario last season when the Hornets ran out as 1-0 victors.
Under the circumstances, punters might be tempted to take advantage of BetVictor’s 5/1 for both halves to end on level terms, while cautious folks, interested in adding an element of insurance to that wager, might also fancy Skybet’s 4/6 posted in favour of both teams scoring. With this in mind, note that William Hill offer 2/1 against the game’s opening goal arriving inside the first 15 minutes.
Bookies rate a 1-1 result higher than any other score (Matchbook price the outcome at 6/1), while a score draw is rated a 10/3 shot by 188bet.
Backers who suspect that Sunderland are a smidgeon overpriced might be inclined to take a modest punt on them winning by the narrowest of margins, especially as Unibet chalk 13/2 against a 1-0 home victory.