These are my tips for the weekend. What do you think?
Norwich 1 v 2 Chelsea – Saturday 24 August – Premier League – Both Teams to Score (1.55)
I can see this being a very difficult game for Chelsea. Norwich are enjoying life back in the Premier League and were very convincing in their win over Newcastle last weekend. They showed plenty of attacking intent away at Liverpool, too, and striker Teemu Pukki has four goals in two games. Frank Lampard is still searching for his first competitive win as Chelsea boss. The Blues are unbeaten in their last 14 games against Norwich, although three of the last five have been draws. I expect a very close game, but Chelsea should come out on top.
Liverpool 3 v 1 Arsenal – Saturday 24 August – Premier League – Over 2.5 Goals (1.45)
These two teams are top of the table at the start of the weekend, but I think that will change at full time. Liverpool have had a strong start to the season, winning both of their league games and drawing in the Community Shield and UEFA Super Cup. Arsenal have won their two opening games for the first time in ten years. However, the good news for the Gunners ends there. They have lost five of their last ten away league games while Liverpool are unbeaten at Anfield in the league since April 2017. Jurgen Klopp is yet to taste defeat against Arsenal since he moved to Mersyside, winning all three meetings at Anfield. I see a Home Win and Over 2.5 Goals, which has happened in 12 of these teams’ last 15 match-ups.
Schalke 0 v 2 Bayern Munich – Saturday 24 August – Bundesliga – Bayern Munich Win (1.35)
Both sides were held to draws on the opening weekend of the Bundesliga. Schalke drew 0-0 at Monchengladbach last Saturday, continuing a trend at the end of last season when they drew three games in a row. Bayern could not beat Hertha Berlin last Friday. They’re unbeaten in their last 15 league games, but they’ve drawn three of the last five. Schalke may feel they have a chance, but they’ve lost six of their last ten home league games. They’ve also not beaten Bayern since 2010. I’m backing an Away Win.
Tottenham 3 v 0 Newcastle – Sunday 25 August – Premier League – Tottenham Win with 0:1 Handicap (1.70)
Tottenham’s dramatic draw with Manchester City will have given them a great deal of confidence at the start of the season. They’ve also made a bright start to life at their new stadium, where they fought back to beat Aston Villa two weeks ago. In contrast, Newcastle have lost both of their games this season and their new signings are yet to click. The Magpies have lost their last four matches against Tottenham and I can’t see past the same result this time.
Barcelona 2 v 1 Real Betis – Sunday 25 August – La Liga – Both Team to Score (1.75)
This is a tough one to call. Barcelona are still missing some key players through injury and went down 1-0 at Bilbao last Friday. They’ve won two and drawn one of their last five league games. Betis have the same record. They lost last weekend too, although goalkeeper Joel Robles was sent off after just eight minutes. Barcelona’s home record is formidable, though, winning 13 of their last 15 league games at the Nou Camp. Meanwhile, Betis have lost four of their last five games on the road. I have to go for a Home Win.