Make it a blue day at Anfield
Sunday brings two big games in the Premier League, both having big implications in the race for a top-four spot.
- Related Content
Chelsea look overpriced to win at Liverpool, according to our Andy Schooler, while Manchester City have the form to beat an out-of-sorts Spurs side.
Here's his game-by-game preview of the action:
These are two sides with contrasting form and that's convincing enough for things to be kept simple in terms of betting on the game - a Manchester City win at 13/10 is the way to go. City's title defence essentially ended a long time ago and it is to their credit that they have not eased up - they come into this one having won eight of their last nine games in all competitions, including last week's FA Cup victory over Chelsea. How Spurs could have done with a run like that. It's just one win in seven for them now and they've fallen behind in the top-four race. The good news for them is that Gareth Bale and Jermain Defoe could return from injury for this one but there surely has to be a fear that the former is being rushed back given the need for points right now. The latter seems unlikely to be razor sharp either after a month on the sidelines. In any case, City have been tight at the back of late, while in front of the defence Yaya Toure and Gareth Barry are two of the best in the business at suffocating opposing attacks and so City seem better equipped than most to deal with Bale. Injury concerns to David Silva and Sergio Aguero are a slight worry for City backers, but at the same time it should also be remembered how Edin Dzeko performed at White Hart Lane last season, scoring four in a 5-1 win. That result is one of four City wins in the last four games between the sides and I'll take them to make it five from five.
Verdict: Tottenham 1 Manchester City 2
We've said it before and will doubtless say it again - Liverpool are too short this weekend. They are a best of 21/20 to beat a side considerably better than them. Yes, Liverpool do have the league's top scorer in Luis Suarez and they have improved, albeit slightly, under Brendan Rodgers' tutelage. However, aside from Suarez and perhaps Steven Gerrard and Glen Johnson, how many of the Reds would you take over the Blues? For me, Chelsea - 11 points clear of their opponents having played one game less - look way too big to join fellow big guns Arsenal and Manchester United in winning at Anfield this season (West Brom and Aston Villa have also managed it). OK, their away form hasn't been the greatest of late but they did post a convincing 3-0 win at Fulham in midweek - their eighth road win of the campaign - and remain in real need of points as they bid to nail down a top-four spot. In Demba Ba they have a proven goalscorer, while the supply chain of Mata, Hazard, Lampard and co has already been well documented. Liverpool's last two results have been goalless draws and even taking into account that they were unfortunate to come up against an inspired keeper last weekend, those points against West Ham and Reading can only be classed as disappointing. They have very little to play for now too. The 13/5 about a Chelsea win seems more than fair but in my opinion the best way to get with them is to take the safety net of the draw-no-bet proviso. At 13/8, Chelsea are still a cracking price and should be backed.
Verdict: Liverpool 1 Chelsea 2