Pozuelo to tame Tigers
Ben Linfoot previews Monday's Premier League game between Swansea and Hull City and fancies an anytime scorer bet.
Just one point separates these two in the Barclays Premier League table, yet Swansea are strong favourites at around 4/5 while Hull are available to back at 9/2.
The main reason for this is Hull City's away form, which has yielded just three points from seven games away from the KC Stadium.
In defence of Steve Bruce's team, they have had some tremendously hard fixtures on the road, with defeats at Chelsea, Manchester City, Everton, Spurs, Southampton and Arsenal six of the toughest tests they'll face.
Indeed, their easiest fixture was at Newcastle and they won that 3-2, so 9/2 about them winning at Swansea, who could still be deprived of both Michu and Wilfrid Bony, isn't too shabby at all.
They have also played well in their last two games, when beating Liverpool 3-1 at home and when losing to Arsenal 2-0 at the Emirates.
However, their previous two matches when losing to Crystal Palace and Southampton were less impressive and trusting them to put three consecutive good efforts together is difficult, especially considering they had to work very hard for a 2-0 defeat on Wednesday night.
Swansea had a much more pleasurable midweek match, beating Newcastle 3-0 at the Liberty Stadium.
They were flattered to win by that scoreline, but Michael Laudrup will have been very pleased by the way his team grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck in the second period.
Jonjo Shelvey deserves plenty of credit for that, if not for his misjudged altercation with Mathieu Debuchy, but Swansea's strings were pulled throughout the game by the excellent Alejandro Pozuelo who looks a big price at 11/2 to score anytime at Coral.
The young Spaniard looked in great form in midweek and his twinkle toes linked up well with Alvaro Vazquez, Pablo Hernandez and Nathan Dyer.
That was only his fourth Premier League start of the campaign and he's yet to score, but he's got a couple at home in Europe and it looks a matter of time before he breaks his league duck. As for whether he plays, his chances of starting a fifth Premier League game look good considering his efforts against the Magpies.
Although his brief will be to create for others, he could effectively play as a striker again with Vazquez a doubt. In any case, his intricate one-twos around the box could well be key to undoing Hull's stout defence and he looks likely to create opportunities for himself.
Most bookies go 3/1 or worse about him scoring anytime and that looks about right for this burgeoning talent. 11/2 is too big to ignore.
Verdict: Swansea City 2 Hull City 1
Just 10 seasons ago, these sides met in the fourth tier of English football. Leon Britton featured in one of those two games for Swansea.
Hull City have won three and lost none of the last four league meetings with Swansea.
No team has benefitted from more own goals than Swansea this season (4) while two of their last five goals have come via the opposition.
Hull City have won just one of their last 31 Barclays Premier League away games (W1 D7 L23).
- The game is being broadcast live in the UK on Sky Sports.