We are almost at the halfway stage of the Premier League season as we approach matchday 18 in what will be the final round of fixtures for most EPL teams in 2022.
With many games on the board this Saturday we believe to have found two of the best soccer picks in the Leeds United vs. Newcastle and Bournemouth vs. Crystal Palace matchups.
Leeds United FC vs. Newcastle United FC
Saturday, December 31, 2022 – 10:00 AM EST St. James’ Park
Newcastle United are in the form of their lives right now having picked up six wins in a row and are undefeated in their previous 11 EPL games, if they can avoid defeat against Leeds United on home soil it will mark 12 games unbeaten for the first time in the club’s history.
Newcastle is very much in dreamland right now sitting in 3rd place overall and will be looking to secure their first Champions League spot for the first time in almost 20 years.
It’s been a difficult season for Leeds United, and their road form has not helped as they have picked up just 4 points from a possible 21 (the second worst in the EPL).
Leeds have lost 6 of their previous 8 games and are two points clear of the relegation zone but fans will be glad to hear they have one game in hand on all the teams below them in the league.
Pick and Prediction
Leeds United’s five previous EPL games has seen both teams scoring and over 2.5 match goals, which is a good sign for our over 2.5 goals pick. Although we are laying a lot of juice here at -140 for 3+ match goals, it’s hard to see this game not having three or more goals (especially when Leeds is involved).
It’s hard to make an argument that there won’t be four goals scored in this game as Leeds on the road and Newcastle at home have combined to see over 3.5 match goals in 6 of their 9 games; although that makes good reading for our over 2.5 goals bet.
Miguel Almiron has scored 9 times thus far this season (the Magpies’ top goalscorer) and he is available to score anytime at a nice set of odds at +240 with the best sportsbooks.
Soccer Pick: Over 2.5 Goals (-140) at FanDuel
Crystal Palace FC vs. AFC Bournemouth
Saturday, December 31, 2022 – 10:00 AM EST at Vitality Stadium
Crystal Palace comes into this road game with a chip on their shoulder following a 3-0 defeat to London rivals Fulham on Boxing Day, a game in which Palace had two red cards handed out before the 60th minute of the game.
Palace also come into this matchup having won just one of their six road games thus far this season and have only picked up 5 points from a possible 18 in their last six outings. Amazingly, Palace has not had a shot on target now in their previous two games, the last time a Premier League team went three games without a shot on target was way back in 2004.
Bournemouth has lost 5 of their previous 6 EPL games and is getting sucked toward the bottom of the league table as they are now only three points ahead of 18th-placed Wolves. The Cherries have struggled to find the back of the net this season and have not scored on home soil in 4 of their previous 7 games.
Pick and Prediction
Although Palace has been struggling on the road this season and has not been in good form in front of goals, they have scored against Bournemouth in their previous 9 matchups and we believe this Palace team has the beating of Bournemouth in this EPL fixture.
We are betting Palace +0.0 on the Asian handicap, which essentially means a tie game will result in a push, and a Palace win will cash as a winner at -120. We are laying juice here for the safety net of having a push for a tied game compared to Palace’s outright odds at +150.
Keep an eye on Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha who has picked up one goal, five assists, and three yellow cards in his previous 10 games against Bournemouth. If Palace wins here, it’s likely Zaha will be involved.
Soccer Pick: Crystal Palace +0.0 (-120) at FanDuel