With winners at good prices on Sunday, Tom Carnduff is hoping for more and has a headline 28/1 tip for Sheffield United v Newcastle.
For details of advised bookmakers and each-way terms, visit our transparent tipping record
It's hardly a classic to welcome back the Premier League following the FA Cup break, but it is an important game for both sides and potentially could bring Sheffield United their first win of the league campaign. They finally tasted victory by narrowly beating Bristol Rovers 3-2 at the weekend.
The fixture scheduling presented back-to-back wins as a possibility, and a real opportunity to build some momentum as they look to pull off an unlikely survival. The Blades are currently 1/25 for relegation with the bookmakers - 9/1 to survive with 12 points between themselves and safety.
The issue with looking at the outright market for this game is just how unappealing the prices are. The Blades may well win this, it's a good opportunity, but the 7/5 on offer for a team who has two points after 17 games is just not enough. That would be a price on a home team in a 12th v 10th clash, not a team so far behind already in the relegation battle.
It should be a fairly quiet contest and not many will argue against the 1/2 available on under 2.5 goals. The Blades sit 18th in the Premier League for games with three or more goals while just two of their eight contests at Bramall Lane have hit this target. Against a fairly uninspiring Newcastle side, we can expect that run to become two in nine.
That said, it wouldn't be a surprise to see both teams to score landing at much better odds of 11/10. The Blades haven't kept a clean sheet this season, while Newcastle have also been conceding. The visitors have consistently scored against other sides in the bottom-half though and there will be disappointment if they can't get at least one here.
The goalscorer market is where the best bet can be found, with little appeal elsewhere. Ciaran Clark was mentioned as a potential goalscorer against Leeds at odds of 20/1, he struck in the second-half, and this game looks like one where he can get his second of the campaign.
The Blades are the joint-second worst team at conceding from set-pieces in the Premier League. At this point, it's not something that can simply be worked on but a significant problem, both of their goals in the win over Bristol Rovers were as a result of set-piece situations.
Newcastle aren't exactly prolific scorers from free-kicks or corners but they have capitalised against teams where it is a weakness.
Leeds are statistically the worst - Newcastle scored. The Blades are tied with Leicester for goals conceded from set-pieces - Andy Carroll capitalised against the Foxes in Newcastle's last league outing.
Clark may not have had a clear chance to score against Leicester but he did get two shots away. A great Allison save denied him a goal against Liverpool, another team who sit in the top-half for goals conceded from set-plays. Clark's 4.1 aerial duels won per game is the highest average in the Newcastle team and it looks like a game where he could get one really good chance to score.
His prices look a tad too generous when you factor in the numbers and recent attacking performances. Shopping around gives a best price of 28/1 for the first goal, with 12/1 available on one coming anytime. I'd be expecting around 7 or 8/1 for a player like Clark against a weak set-piece side like Sheffield United.
It's a big price selection but we've mentioned previously how they can represent good value in the right game. Angelo Ogbonna (12/1) gave us a winner when he scored against Leeds and Clark (20/1) did the same a few days later. Before the international break, Krystian Bielik (16/1) put a shot inches wide, Matt Clarke (20/1) came close twice and Adam Webster (16/1) hit the bar.
In a game where little could happen, set-pieces could be key and that should play into the hands of Clark and the visitors.
Score prediction: Sheffield United 1-1 Newcastle (Sky Bet odds: 5/1)
Odds correct at 1415 GMT (11/01/21)
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