PREMIER LEAGUE expert Daniel McCulloch (@DMcCulloch1984) is back to attack Saturday's 3pm best bets.
Huddersfield v Brighton | Saturday 1st December 2018, 15:00
A tense encounter looks to be in store in West Yorkshire and it’s surely a short price that this game is last on Match Of The Day.
Huddersfield enjoyed an excellent away win at Wolves last weekend and while both goals came from outside the area, it was a deserved success as they looked the better side throughout and kept the Black Country outfit a lot quieter than I expected.
That was the first time David Wagner’s side have scored two goals in a Premier League game since 24th February so I am not expecting a goalfest here. Indeed, Huddersfield have scored just two goals in seven home games this term and just 18 in 26 matches since they gained promotion.
Brighton have struggled away from home since they reached the Premier League. They have failed to score in 15 of their 26 away games and have just one away victory in the last 12 months.
Town fans have certainly enjoyed their top-flight status but it’s hard to suggest that they’ve been entertained at home. Four of their 26 home games have ended goalless, Town themselves having failed to score in half of these matches with these games averaging just 1.96 goals.
All things considered, I couldn’t put anyone off backing No Goalscorer but I will remain relatively cautious and simply back Under 1.5 Goals at 6/4 with Betfair. That has been a successful in 11 of the 26 game sample I am referring to and given Brighton’s struggles on the road, it looks like excellent value.
Newcastle v West Ham | Saturday 1st December 2018, 15:00
It was a fine and much-needed victory for Newcastle at Burnley on Monday night. It was also their third in a row and took them above their opponents this weekend, West Ham, on goal difference.
However, I really struggle to see Newcastle being within 10 points of West Ham by the end of the season. While I don’t see the Geordies going down, I do think it will be a season of struggle for Rafa Benitez's men and it’s interesting to note that the Expected Points table (which essentially extrapolates the Expected Goals results) has the visitors more than three points ahead of Newcastle.
In terms of the game this weekend, I simply believe West Ham have better players and after studying their away form I am confident that the 31/25 Marathon are offering on the Hammers in the Draw No Bet market is good value.
Last season Newcastle recorded excellent home victories against Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea but their results against their peers (sides from seventh down) have not been great. Since their return to the Premier League, their home record against such sides reads W7-D3-L7.
In the same time period, against the same teams, West Ham have W4-D6-L7. This season they have beaten Everton on the road and drawn with both Huddersfield and Leicester.
The Hammers' sole loss against somebody who finished from seventh down last season was at Brighton, where they were hugely unfortunate. They had 17 shots to their opponents nine that day and missed some gilt-edge chances towards the end of the game.
Across the 17 game sample I refer to, West Ham have drawn 1-1 on four occasions, so I think it is also worth backing that scoreline. That is available at 11/2 with Betfred.