Matchweek 27 Preview and New Podcast Episode

The matchweek after a Champions League/Europa League week is the best feeling in the world. You’ve just watched great soccer for the last three days and now you get more all weekend long. Speaking of the Champions League here were the results from Tuesday and Wednesday’s matches:

Atletico scored early, parked the bus for about 80 minutes and held Liverpool to 0 shots on goal for the first time all season. Going to Anfield will be tough but if they can find a way to sit back and score an away goal then Liverpool would need three to win the tie.

Dortmund and PSG didn’t disappoint, especially in the second half. Haaland scored both goals for Dortmund as his insane run of form continues and 17-year-old American Gio Reyna assisted his second. PSG aren’t out though as their away goal gives them a fighting chance in the second leg.

Atalanta turned heads on Wednesday with 4 goals against a decent Valencia team. Valencia have hope in the second leg with that away goal, but keeping Atalanta’s offense at bay will be a very hard task even at the Mestalla.

My darkhorse pick to make the Final RB Leipzig went to London and beat Spurs on a Werner penalty. The stat sheet seemed even but this match was all about RB Leipzig.

We went into these matches and more in our newest episode of our podcast. Listen, subscribe and rate!!

https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/can-i-kick-it/id1477486316#episodeGuid=tag%3Asoundcloud%2C2010%3Atracks%2F764294446

Let’s dive into this weekend’s matches.

All-Time Record: 608-538-161 
Last Two Seasons: 345-301-94 (+12.2 units)
This Season: 133-132-46 (-2.4 Units)
UCL Round of 16 pt. 1: 4-4 (+0.9 Units)

English Premier League
Saturday, February 22nd
7:30 am EST

Tottenham @ Chelsea (TV: NBCSN) – Spurs had a tough showing against Leipzig this week in the Champions League and I feel like that type of performance will repeat itself here and for the next few weeks. They currently don’t have a natural striker right now with Kane and Son out for the rest of the year. I genuinely don’t know where the goals are going to come from. I know Chelsea have been poor this season at home but Spurs have been just as bad if not worse from home. Sell Spurs. Chelsea -0.5 (-135).

10:00 am EST

Bournemouth @ Burnley – I initially liked Bournemouth as underdogs here until I saw what Burnley were going for here. They’re playing really solid footy and have recently beaten Leicester, United and drew Arsenal. They also just went to Southampton and won. I can’t pass up on them at home at (+115) here. Burnley -0.5 (+115).

Newcastle @ Crystal Palace – Palace have now lost three Premier League matches in a row and are one of only two teams in the entire English Football League who have not won a match in 2020 (the other being Brighton). Newcastle didn’t have a good showing against Arsenal last Sunday but overall in 2020 they’ve been pretty dang good. I don’t trust Palace to win outright here so I’ll take the points. Newcastle +0.5 (-120).

Brighton @ Sheffield – The other team who hasn’t won in 2020? Brighton. Sheffield have also re-righted the ship a bit and their form looks to have returned to what we remember it early in the year. Brighton’s away form is also one of the worst in the league. Feels like a bit of a no-brainer here and I don’t want to overthink it. Sheffield United -0.5 (-105).

Aston Villa @ Southampton – Southampton have shown some really bright spots this year but they only have one win in their last six matches in all competitions and showed again on Saturday against Burnley that they’re not a sure thing yet. Villa meanwhile have two wins in their last six and should have probably got points against Spurs last weekend if they didn’t have several key mistakes. I felt that Southampton should be favored but not by an entire goal. That’s way too much for me and I’ll gladly take Villa here as underdogs. Aston Villa +1 (-120).

Manchester City @ Leicester City (TV: NBC) – This match is amazing but too bad it has little to no importance in the standings. In fact, this is the least important match for City over the next week as they have to travel to Madrid in the Champions League on Wednesday. With that being said I don’t know what Pep will do lineup-wise and their minds will surely be focused on Wednesday. City also played a midweek match against West Ham and Leicester are fully rested. I think Leicester’s style fits perfectly against a team like City and I think they’ll make this hard on City in all facets. I’ll gladly take Leicester as a home underdog on positive odds here. Leicester City +0.5 (+115).

Sunday, February 23rd
9:00 am EST

Watford @ Manchester United – I’m actually staying away from this match. The line seems too small but I also don’t trust United to blow a tough team like Watford out. PASS.

Norwich @ Wolves – Wolves haven’t been as good at home this season as you’d expect them to be and Norwich, as bad as they are, haven’t been an easy out. In fact, they’ve only lost by more than one goal once since the November break. I think Wolves should win this but I also think a one-goal spread is too much especially when Wolves had a midweek match in the Europa League. I’ll take the Canaries who are still fighting for their life. Norwich City +1 (-110).

Everton @ Arsenal (TV: NBCSN) – Arsenal are beginning to look really good. In 2020 under Mikel Arteta, they’re undefeated and are coming off of a big 4-0 at home to Newcastle last weekend. Yes, they had some travel to Greece this week but I still trust them here at home against an Everton team who are averaging less than 1 point per match away from home this season. Arsenal -0.5 (+105).

Monday, February 24th
3:00 pm EST

West Ham @ Liverpool (TV: NBCSN) – Liverpool are miles ahead of this West Ham team. I know Henderson will be out but if you saw West Ham’s effort against City this week, you’d realize that they have no chance here against Liverpool. I see this as a push but there is much higher of a chance of them winning by 3 than them winning by only 1 here. I don’t see how you can fade the Reds here. Liverpool -2 (-130).

Stay kickin’ it. Peace.

Twitter: @canikickitpod
Twitter: @nicodegallo

Nico

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