Spurs won't face an Anfield rap
Two good-class Premier League fixtures on Sunday involving teams who took part in European competition in midweek.
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We have picked out a couple of wagers with firstly Newcastle fancied for a narrow win at home.
Next up, it seems a good idea to stick with the hot hand and Spurs can keep up the good work when they travel to Liverpool.
Newcastle v Stoke (1500GMT)
Alan Pardew will have been the happier of the two managers after his Newcastle side held Anzhi Makhachkala to a 0-0 Europa League draw in Moscow on Thursday night. But it's back to the 'day job' for Pardew and his players on Sunday as they look to pull themselves further clear of the drop-zone. They failed to take advantage of a potentially demob happy Swansea last time out in the league but the 4-2 win over fellow strugglers Southampton a week previously was a big result and it'd be a surprise to me if they now get sucked back into the fight against relegation. Since bolstering their squad in the January window, they've won three top-flight games from five but more importantly have notched back-to-back home wins. Indeed despite their relatively lowly position in the 'home' table, they've actually won as many games in front of their own fans as sixth-placed Everton and a victory here will take them level with their opponents. Stoke's troubles have been well documented, but it's worth reminding ourselves they are bottom of the form table and in the bottom four in the 'away' table with just one win (at West Brom on December 1) in the league so far this season. Frankly, I can't see them bucking that trend against a Magpies team in good nick, particularly at home. But rather than taking the 10/11 outright, I really like the 14/5 on Newcastle to win by a goal. Five of Stoke's last six games have been decided by a margin of one goal with four going against them (the sixth result, by the way, was a draw so another tight match) and five of their nine league defeats to date have also fitted the bill. For the Magpies, it's four of their seven home wins by a single goal so they aren't averse to a narrow victory.
Verdict: Newcastle 2 Stoke 1 (RK)
Liverpool v Tottenham (1600GMT)
I maintain that Liverpool are a side that will finish the season strongly under Brendan Rodgers but odds-on to beat one of Europe's most in-form teams? No way! Three hefty wins on the spin for just one goal conceded is impressive stuff but halting man-of-the-moment Gareth Bale and a Spurs outfit riding an incredible crest of a wave will be nothing like as straightforward as sweeping aside a ropey old Wigan last weekend. Perhaps the Reds are due a good performance against the visitors as they have managed just one point in their last five meetings - but Spurs have improved out of all recognition under Andre Villas-Boas led by the talismanic Bale. They are unbeaten in 12 Premier League games and the impressive way they dismantled Inter Milan in midweek in a one-sided affair has seen them vault to the head of the betting for the Europa League. Aaron Lennon has a hamstring problem and that does temper enthusiasm a little as the quicksilver winger has proved himself a real handful for defences in recent weeks. With that in mind, take the draw-Spurs in the double chance market, which looks by far a better odds-on option compared to a win for the hosts.
Verdict: Liverpool 1 Tottenham 1 (DJ)