We’ve arrived at the final set of English Premier League fixtures before the first international break. Entering Matchday 4, defending champions Manchester City sit atop the table on nine points. Immediately below Pep Guardiola’s side are Arsenal, Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United. Let’s get into some Premier League Best Bets!
For this weekend’s slate, Arsenal vs. Manchester United serves as the marquee fixture, with Liverpool vs. Aston Villa another prime clash. Elsewhere, Sheffield United welcomes Everton for an early relegation six-pointer while Brighton hosts Newcastle United.
But which fixtures offer bettors the best opportunity? Let’s jump into my two best bets – odds are reflective at the time of writing and are subject to movement.
Go here for daily free Soccer picks!
Premier League Predictions and Best Bets for Matchday 4
Fulham Team Total Under 0.5 Goal at Manchester City (-130) – DraftKings Sportsbook
The Cottagers may have bagged two goals at Arsenal, but they won’t experience similar success at City. Even though they won’t have Guardiola on the touchline, City’s defense proved virtually invincible last season at home. Across 19 Premier League fixtures at the Etihad, they surrendered a mere 12.8 expected goals, per fbref.com. All told, only five of those 19 EPL visitors generated more than one expected goal at City.
Plus, in their first home fixture of the season against Newcastle United – an attack far more threatening than Fulham – City conceded only 0.3 expected goals. This simultaneously rates a great sell opportunity on the Fulham attack based on their performances against City last season.
Although Fulham scored in both head-to-head meetings, there’s more than meets the eye. At City, their goal came via a penalty after receiving a man advantage. Then, at Craven Cottage, they scored once off 0.19 expected goals.
Based on those outputs, take this team total at -145 or better.
Nottingham Forest Goal-Line (+1.25, -105) at Chelsea – DraftKings Sportsbook
Perhaps sportsbooks haven’t properly adjusted their rating on Forest, who have looked sharp in the season’s early goings. This was a side that went to Arsenal – a side with the third-best home expected goal differential last season – and won the expected goals battle. Plus, in a visit to Old Trafford last week, they finished only 0.8 non-penalty expected goals behind Manchester United.
Not to mention the fact Forest completely bossed Chelsea around last season. In two head-to-head meetings with the Blues, the Tricky Trees won the expected goals battle in both. Just in the most recent meeting at Stamford Bridge, manager Steve Cooper’s side won the xG battle 1.3 to 1.17, according to fotmob.com. In a meeting at the City Ground, they earned a 1-1 draw while winning the expected goals battle 1.43 to 0.94.
Although this is a markedly different Chelsea side than last season, I still think there are lingering issues. Plus, manager Mauricio Pochettino’s side closed a one-and-a-half goal favorite against Luton Town last week. Put simply, Forest are more than a quarter-goal better than a team I project to be amongst the worst in recent EPL memory.
Take the visitors to do no worse than a one-goal defeat at -115 or better.