Crystal Palace v Swansea
Palace’s record isn’t nearly as good at home as it is on the road but then again Swansea struggle when they leave the Valleys. Palace’s home stats also become better when looking against opposition type as they’ve won four of their five home games this season against teams currently in the bottom half. Swansea are struggling for goals despite their win on Boxing Day and they’ve lost five of their last six away matches with their sole success coming against Villa. The home win looks value but an alternative bet might be the half-time score with Swansea being goalless or trailing 1-0 at half-time in 15 of their last 19 away games.
Everton v Stoke
Everton have lacked a killer instinct this season as they’ve drawn too many matches when the better side, though they snatched a win at the death two days ago. Since 2013/14 they’ve won 10 of 15 home games against middle-third teams with just two defeats but Stoke will be a tough opponent, as they come in on the back of their own Boxing Day success, and another draw is very possible. The Potters have scored just three times in their last six away matches but have recorded three wins and only one defeat in that time. However, those games included matches at the entire current bottom four and at an injury hit West Ham, and they’ve drawn eight of their last 19 trips to middle-third teams. The last 10 of those matches all had fewer than three goals as have 11 of their last 12 meetings with Everton
Norwich v Aston Villa
Both teams have scored in six of Norwich’s eight home games this season but Leicester are the only visiting side to net here more than once in the last seven matches. Aston Villa have not won on the road since the opening day, picking up just two points from eight games since. Furthermore, they have a terrible record away to promoted teams, with their win at Bournemouth being only their second in 16 such trips since 2010/11 as they’ve scored just twice in the last seven of these matches combined. They’ve lost 10 of their last 14 trips to bottom-half teams and eight of those defeats were to nil.
Watford v Spurs
Watford have been excellent defensively this season and have kept six clean sheets in their nine home matches while both teams have scored in just one. Games against Liverpool and Chelsea may have been daunting when they were promoted but they’ve taken four points from their last two matches and a win here would bring them level with Spurs and see them overtake Man Utd. Spurs thrashed Bournemouth 5-1 earlier in the season and beat Norwich 3-0 on Saturday to make it 18 wins in 20 matches against promoted teams since 2012/13 but this promises to be a closer affair so we’ll look at the goals market. Defensively they’ve improved this season and seven of their last nine away matches have now had fewer than three goals.
West Brom v Newcastle
West Brom were ultimately undone by their own indiscipline in their last home game and having now gone five games without a win this represents a key match against a direct rival. Despite the losses against Bournemouth and Swansea they’ve won four of their last six matches against bottom-half teams, though all have been by the 1-0 score. Newcastle shocked Spurs in their last away game but against a West Brom side that will prioritise their clean sheet the fact the Magpies have failed to score in nine of their last 14 away matches suggests they may struggle.
Arsenal v Bournemouth
Arsenal have won 16 of their 19 home games against bottom-half teams since 2013/14 with 13 wins by more than one goal. Furthermore, they’ve won all of their last nine home matches against promoted teams. However, a defence we’ve highlighted as vulnerable in the absence of Francis Coquelin – they’ve now kept just four clean sheets in 18 matches that he’s failed to start since 2014/15 – was brutally exposed on Boxing Day and has now kept just one clean sheet in seven matches (and that was against Villa). 15 of their last 27 wins have come despite conceding, including eight of 14 at home. 13 of those last 14 home wins also saw them leading at half-time.