Matchweek 23 Preview

Hi folks I am on the road so this preview will be a little short and to the point, but to make up for that I have 13 picks as well as a few 2 unit plays.

I hope everyone can catch some of these matches Saturday and Sunday without any other sports on, so I listed the TV channel on each of the televised matches. Grab a coffee, make some eggs and watch some soccer!

This Season’s Record: 114-105-29 (-3.9 Units) 
Matchweek 22 Record: 5-5 (+0.5 Units)

English Premier League
Saturday, January 19th
7:30 am EST

Leicester @ Wolves (NBCSN) – Take Wolves at home with a well-priced line against an inconsistent Leicester team that doesn’t match up quality-wise. Wolves (-0.5, +125).

10:00 am EST

West Ham @ Bournemouth – I hate taking Bournemouth here but they’re form has to turn eventually and what better chance than to do it at home against a hurting West Ham team riddled with transfer rumors. The home pickem is usually the safest bet. Bournemouth (Pick, -120).

Crystal Palace @ Liverpool (NBCSN) – Easy. Liverpool are far better than Palace and are basically unbeatable at Anfield. Historically Palace have been able to keep this one close, but Liverpool know they need three points and goals to add to their goal differential. Definitely a pushable line but I’ll lean on the side of the Reds here. Liverpool (-2, -105).

Brighton @ Manchester United (CNBC) – Okay call me crazy, but United will have serious trouble against Brighton here. Brighton are more than happy to sit back and stay compact for 60-70% of the match only to hit on the counter or a set piece. They’ve done it against a few top six sides this year and it’s worked. I’ll take my chances that this is a 2-1 or 1-0 match. Brighton (+1.5, -110).

Cardiff @ Newcastle – This will be the match of the season so far for these two clubs as Newcastle sit in the relegation zone, only one point from safety with Cardiff the team ahead of them. But Newcastle lost a 120-minute match on Tuesday in the FA Cup and will likely have heavy legs. I’ll gladly take the points in what could likely be a draw. Neil Warnock’s great escape will continue for another day. Cardiff (+0.5, -115).

Everton @ Southampton – Similarly to Newcastle, Southampton played a 120-minute loss to Derby County at home in the FA Cup after having a 2-0 lead through 75 minutes. Everton meanwhile are healthy and well-rested, playing one less match in the last two weeks than the Saints. A Southampton demoralizing loss, heavy legs and up against an Everton side who will punish you if you don’t show up to play has me loving the Toffees on the pickem line. Everton (Pick, -110) *2 UNITS*.

Burnley @ Watford – Low key Burnley have been in good form. I never thought I’d say that with how their campaign has gone but they’ve won four straight in all competitions. Though the catch is that three of those matches were at home, two were against relegation candidates and one was against League 1 Barnsley. They now go up against a Watford side who have only lost once against non top-6 sides at home and when up for it, are a top 10 side. They are also in great form with only one loss in their last eight. Watford (-1, +105).

12:30 pm EST

Chelsea @ Arsenal (NBC) – No doubt the match of the weekend in the Premier League here. The two London clubs will both be going into this one under some serious pressure. Not only are there the off the field distractions (Ozil rumors, Mislintat leaving Arsenal as head of scouting, Chelsea’s striker issue and limited transfer resources for both clubs), but both are currently fighting for a top four spot this season. That spot is currently held by Chelsea but Arsenal can close the gap to three points with a win. The Gunners have not lost to Chelsea in a competitive fixture at home since January of 2016 and have been brilliant at home in the league this season going 8-2-1, which is third in the league. Luckily for them, their biggest weakness (crappy defense) coincides with Chelsea’s biggest weakness (lack of a striker). If Arsenal can limit Hazard and prevent them from creating a ton on the left wing, they’ll keep Chelsea at bay. I like Arsenal on the pickem line at home with good odds. Arsenal (Pick, +115).

Sunday, January 20th
8:30 am EST

Manchester City @ Huddersfield (NBCSN) – Lol, this one won’t even be close. Tune in to watch Huddersfield’s funeral on NBCSN Sunday morning. Manchester City (-2.5, +115). *2 UNITS*

11:00 am EST

Tottenham @ Fulham (NBCSN) – Things just got a whole lot more interesting for Spurs as they will now be without Son due to international duty and Harry Kane who will be out until March with an ankle injury. Those two have accounted for almost half of their goals this season and it will be interesting to see if they can survive the next few months without them. With that being said, Vegas seriously overcompensated for those injuries and only have Spurs at -0.5 against a Fulham team who only has 14 points from a possible 66 and have conceded 6 more goals than anyone else this season. Spurs should be safe… for now. Tottenham (-0.5, -125).

German Bundesliga
Saturday, January 19th
12:30 pm EST

Borussia Dortmund @ RB Leipzig (FS1) – An awesome match in the Bundesliga as league leaders Dortmund look to keep their six point lead over Bayern while Leipzig know they need points in order to stay in the top four. But Dortmund have been almost unbeatable this season across the board and I think it’s safe to bet on them with the line being a pickem. Dortmund (Pick, +105).

Spanish La Liga
Saturday, January 19th
10:15 am EST

Real Madrid @ Sevilla (BEIN SPORTS) – Both teams are coming off of losses on Wednesday in the Copa Del Rey, but both advanced on aggregate. They fielded mixed squads to rest up for this match as they both had cushions on aggregate in the cup matches so heavy legs shouldn’t be too much of an issue. But Real Madrid’s loss was much more worrying as it marked their 10th loss this season in all competitions and now face this Sevilla team, who they are tied with in third on 33 points. More reason to worry for Madrid? They are 4-2-4 away from home and have not won at Sevilla in all competitions in almost four years. I love Sevilla as full goal underdogs at home so I’m going to put two units on it. Sevilla (+1, -120) *2 UNITS.

French Ligue 1
Sunday, January 20th
3:00 pm EST

Lyon @ St. Etienne – If you’ve read my blog before then you know how much I love picking St. Etienne. They’re currently in third place in Ligue 1, are undefeated at home in the league and have been winning me money all season long. SOMEHOW they have positive odds on the pickem line at home against Lyon. Lyon is a team who have won just one league match in their last six and have been playing very poorly overall these last few weeks. I love St. Etienne yet again and will keep riding them until they let me down. St. Etienne (Pick, +120) *2 UNITS*.

Enjoy your weekend!

Stay Kickin’ It. Peace.

Twitter: @nicodegallo
Facebook: Can I Kick It

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Nico

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