Bukayo Saka (left) will face Wilfried Zaha in the Premier League season opener on Friday
Bukayo Saka (left) will face Wilfried Zaha in the Premier League season opener on Friday

Crystal Palace v Arsenal tips: Premier League best bets and preview

The new Premier League season gets underway on Friday night as Crystal Palace host Arsenal. Jake Osgathorpe previews the game, selecting his best bets.

Football betting tips: Premier League

2pts Crystal Palace or Draw Double Chance at 11/10 (General)

Sky Bet odds | Paddy Power | Betfair Sportsbook

Betting guide image - USE THIS ONE (but delete caption)

The new Premier League season opens with an intriguing match up at Selhurst Park.

Crystal Palace were excellent last season, better than their league position reflected, while there is a real feel-good factor around Arsenal heading into this new campaign - maybe too much.

Patrick Vieira did an incredible job last season, not only turning Palace around on the pitch to the eye-test, but also by transforming their underlying process from that of a relegation threatened side to that of a top seven/eight team.

Kick-off time: 20:00 BST, Friday

TV channel: Sky Sports Main Event

C Palace 10/3 | Draw 13/5 | Arsenal 4/5

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In my book, he didn't get anywhere near the amount of credit as he should have done, and Palace's success as a whole went under the radar somewhat, with that attitude seemingly still in place as we begin the 22/23 campaign.

The Eagles ranked as the sixth best team in the league last season based on expected points (xP) and expected goal difference (xGD).

Palace rolling form

Yes, you read that right - SIXTH.

Arsenal were fifth in both categories, just one place above the Eagles, yet are going off as odds-on favourites away at Palace? That seems plain wrong to me and massively disrespectful to the Eagles.

They were way too short in my book in this fixture last season when going off at 21/20 - I would have made them closer to 7/5 on that occasion, and a decent transfer window (on paper) along with some good friendly results isn't enough for me to make a drastic change in my opinion.

The prices are just buying into the Arsenal hype too much, and don't get me wrong, this version of Arsenal could be IT but I still wouldn't be backing them at a general 5/6 price.

CRYSTAL PALACE OR DRAW in the Double Chance market is therefore the selection at a best price of 11/10.

The case for getting the Eagles onside only strengthens when we look at their home process and record last season, along with Arsenal's away process.

At Selhurst, Palace ranked sixth best again for xP and xGD, but an eye-catching third best in terms of expected goals against (xGA). Only Manchester City (0.68 per game) and Liverpool (0.73) were better defensively when playing at home than Vieira's side (0.97).

xGA per home game 21/22 PL

There is no reason why these levels can't be maintained into this season given the continuity at the club, and that defensive process stands us in good stead for backing the double chance, as the draw becomes a runner.

Also, when facing the 'big six' at Selhurst Park last season, Palace fared rather well. They thumped Spurs and Arsenal 3-0, beat Manchester United 1-0 and held Manchester City to a goalless draw - only losing to Liverpool and Chelsea (narrowly).

Those results were no flukes either, with their xG process across their six home games against the leagues elite positive, meaning that on average, they created more and better chances than those opponents (1.34 xGF, 1.19 xGA per game).

Palace at home v big six

That is an incredible achievement.

In the red corner, Arsenal's away form was the major thing cost them in finishing top four last season, winning just nine of 19 and losing nine.

Their overall xG process on the road reads poorly (-0.39 xGD per game), and even if we remove their xG-spankings at the Etihad and Anfield, they still posted a negative process (1.34 xGF, 1.35 xGA per game) that really instils zero confidence in them at this kind of price.

All of this adds up to a very pro-Palace position, and while the home win did tempt me at a huge 7/2, taking the safer play and getting the draw onside too appeals as a cracking opening game bet.

Crystal Palace v Arsenal score prediction and best bets

  • 2pts Crystal Palace or Draw Double Chance at 11/10 (General)

Score prediction: Crystal Palace 1-1 Arsenal (Sky Bet odds: 11/2)

Odds correct 2200 BST (02/08/22)

Premier League Score Predictor
ALSO READ: Jake Osgathorpe's Premier League Score Predictor

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