As always, this year’s festive period in the English Premier League is set to be incredibly exciting. There are many fixtures for us to look forward to in the coming week, including Hull vs. Manchester City and Southampton vs. Tottenham.
Here are the finest betting tips and predictions for game week 18 to give you a winning accumulator:
Watford vs. Crystal Palace – 26th December – 12:30
Crystal Palace begin life without Alan Pardew on a difficult trip to Watford during Boxing Day. With no manager, the Eagles will find it tough to get a result at Vicarage Road.
Despite their poor form recently, Watford are a very hard side to break down, with a strong midfield spine of Behrami and Capoue. They have great form at home this season, winning 4 of their 8 Premier League matches at Vicarage Road. This run of form includes an excellent 3-2 win over José Mourinho’s Manchester United.
For Crystal Palace to get at least one point here, they will have to hope that their attacking players are on form. Brilliant recent performances from Wilfried Zaha and Christian Benteke have ensured that Palace haven’t been short of goals. However, with no manager, the motivation will not be there for the Eagles, and their poor defensive record is expected to continue here.
Prediction: Watford 3-1 Crystal Palace
Arsenal vs. West Brom – 26th December – 15:00
An Arsenal side in a bad form host Tony Pulis’s West Brom, who are playing extremely well this year in the Premier League.
Despite two losses in their last two games, Arsenal are undefeated at the Emirates since the opening day of the season. This loss was a 4-3 setback to 2nd place Liverpool. Their excellent home form, along with an attacking combination of Mesut Özil and Alexis Sánchez, should be enough to see off West Brom. But, it won’t be easy…
West Brom are incredibly resilient. They made life tough for Chelsea in their last away game, losing the game 1-0 due to a Gareth McAuley error 14 minutes from time. However, their defensive style will suit a very attacking Arsenal side, who will dominate. They should win here.
Prediction: Arsenal 2-0 West Brom
Burnley vs. Middlesbrough – 26th December – 15:00
This match at Turf Moor could be a significant result for teams battling to beat relegation. With Middlesbrough in 14th and Burnley in 16th, a win here could give a team much-needed confidence that they can beat the drop.
The only reason Burnley aren’t rock bottom is due to their brilliant home form. They are 8th in the home league table, with five wins in 9 matches. This form includes wins over Merseyside neighbours Everton and Liverpool. Burnley will continue their home record here, and beat a Middlesbrough side who have only won once on the road all season.
Prediction: Burnley 1-0 Middlesbrough
Chelsea vs. Bournemouth – 26th December – 15:00
Bournemouth visit Stamford Bridge to face the most in-form team in the country right now.
Chelsea have won 11 Premier League games in a row and look unbeatable. The only thing going for Bournemouth right now is that Premier League top scorer, Diego Costa, and midfield maestro, N’golo Kante, are out with suspensions. Michy Batshuayi and Cesc Fàbregas are expected to come into the side for Chelsea, as some of the best replacements available.
Overall, Chelsea will be able to cope against a Bournemouth side who have only scored 7 times away from home all season.
Prediction: Chelsea 3-0 Bournemouth
Leicester vs. Everton – 26th December – 15:00
Reality has hit hard for Leicester City. After last year’s miraculous title win, the Foxes sit in 15th place, just 3 points above the relegation zone.
Everton aren’t in the best form of late, either. After a fantastic start to the season under Ronald Koeman, the Toffees have won just twice in their last 13 league games.
This will be a very tight game at the King Power Stadium. Leicester, who are always confident at home, will take the game to Everton. They will have more possession and create more chances. The absence of Jamie Vardy through suspension, however, will decrease Leicester’s pace on the counter.
Koeman has turned Everton into a solid outfit. They don’t score many goals, but are tough to break down on most occasions. They won’t find it hard to nullify Leicester’s poor attacking threat. This should make this game relatively low scoring.
Prediction: Leicester 1-1 Everton
Manchester United vs. Sunderland – 26th December – 15:00
After years of inconsistency and disappointment, José Mourinho is starting to make Manchester United look like a winning team again. They are unbeaten in 10 games and got a good win away at West Brom last week.
Despite still sitting in the relegation zone on 14 points, Sunderland have looked like a better team in recent weeks. They have four wins in their last 7 Premier League games. Jermain Defoe has scored eight goals for the Black Cats so far. With him in the side, Sunderland are always going to have an attacking threat.
Although Sunderland have improved, Manchester United will most likely win here. Zlatan Ibrahimović is in red-hot form, with 11 goals this season. Also, the Red Devils have kept three clean sheets in their last four games.
This will be a relatively easy day for United at Old Trafford.
Prediction: Manchester United 3-0 Sunderland
Swansea vs. West Ham United – 26th December – 15:00
Out of all of the Premier League games on Boxing Day, this is the hardest to predict. Both sides have been awful this season, and it’s tricky to predict what will come from each team.
Swansea sit in 19th position, and, judging by the way they are playing, look destined to go down. But, they have won both of their last two home games against Crystal Palace and Sunderland. This shows that they have some resilience when they badly need 3 points.
It has been a season to forget for West Ham. They have won one game away from home all season, and that was against a poor Crystal Palace side. However, the Hammers have won their last two games 1-0, despite probably being the worst team in both. This does show some resilience. West Ham fans will hope that this signals an upturn in form and that their side can get a positive result in Wales.
But to be honest, there is no confidence in West Ham at the moment. If Sigurdsson and Llorente are on form for Swansea, Bob Bradley’s side will be getting at least one point here.
Prediction: Swansea 2-2 West Ham
Hull City vs. Manchester City – 26th December – 17:15
Only one team will win this match.
Pep Guardiola‘s Manchester City probably have the best squad in the league. Even without Aguero, they can cause any team problems. They currently sit in 3rd place and can’t afford to drop points if they want to catch Chelsea. After last week’s win against Arsenal, the squad should be full of confidence.
Against a poor Hull side who sit at the bottom of the league, City should have a quick and easy win on their hands.
Prediction: Hull City 0-2 Manchester City
Liverpool vs. Stoke – 27th December – 17:15
When they lost star man, Phillipe Coutinho, to an ankle injury, Liverpool fans feared the worst. However, the Reds have seemed to deal with the setback pretty well. Aside from one slip-up against Bournemouth, Jurgen Klopp‘s men have looked steady and composed. They are ready for a title challenge. They are unbeaten at Anfield all season, and this shouldn’t change here.
After an abysmal start to the season, Stoke have majorly improved. They sit in 8th on the form table with good wins against Burnley and Watford under their belt in recent weeks. However, they let a two-goal lead slip against 10-man Leicester last week, and this will negatively affect their confidence for this trip to Liverpool.
Prediction: Liverpool 3-1 Stoke
Southampton vs. Tottenham – 28th December – 19:45
Southampton’s inconsistency makes them highly unpredictable. They beat Arsenal in the Cup one week, then lost to Hull in the league the next. Without top scorer, Charlie Austin, who is out through injury, they will find it hard to break Tottenham‘s defence down, especially with Toby Alderweireld back in the fold for the Lilywhites.
Spurs have been following the pack so far this season, and sit in 5th place, just 1 point behind Arsenal and 3 points behind Manchester City. They head into this match in good form, coming off two solid wins against Hull and Burnley.
However, they have looked a touch off the team they were last season. Even though Spurs’ defence has been solid, they have regularly struggled to score goals. Their inconsistency is worrying, but they could sneak a win here.
Prediction: Southampton 1-2 Tottenham