The StanJames.com Premier League Predictor Competition is back! That's right! After a dismal international break, the Premier League returns, just in time to save our sanity! Our hair may be thinning, and the clock's aging, but our passion's undiminished!
Our predicting skills left a lot to be desired last year, leaving many of you delighted as we dished out the free bets left, right and centre! Undaunted, we're back for more this year and hoping for a better performance ahead of the start of week two this Saturday, with the first game this time round a mouthwatering clash between Liverpool and Manchester United, which kicks-off at 12.30pm.
You'll need your scores in before then as we cover all seven of Saturday's matches for Week 8 of the Predictor.
New for 2017/18, as well as the weekly free bets we'll be giving away prizes for the top three players each month and the overall season. Additionally, there will be surprise prizes awarded on an ad hoc basis throughout the season, so make sure you keep up-to-date!
So, what do I have to do to enter this FREE COMPETITION?
All you have to do is head over to our Predictor Competition, complete the quick registration form then simply enter your selections for the upcoming Premier League fixtures. Three points are awarded for a correct score and one for a correct result. The overall winner will bag a £25 Free Bet and anyone who finishes in the top 25 players will receive a £5 free bet.**
Don't forget, in order to collect your prize you must have placed at least one bet (any stake) in the 14 days prior to playing. Full T&Cs can be found here!
A magnificent seven Premier League matches to predict for Week 8. If you please, all predictions to be entered before 12.30pm on Saturday, October 14th. Don't have an account yet? Click here to open one.
** Free bets will be credited within 48 hours.
Game of the weekend starts with the early kick-off between two of the big hitters in the north-west as Manchester United head to Anfield to tackle the Red side of Liverpool. There’s always been drama in these battles who both have a hatred for one another. Whilst last season’s Red Monday didn’t live up to the hype, we’ve high hopes for this one.
Liverpool can’t defend, but can score, whilst United don’t concede and score for fun – albeit against the so called lesser sides in the Premier League. This will be the Red Devils’ biggest test of the campaign and they’ll be without one of Jose Mourinho’s favourites for it, with Marouane Fellaini missing out on a return to Merseyside, as the former Everton man picked up an injury with Belgium this week. Liverpool will also have to cope without a key man following Sadio Mane’s hamstring injury – ruling him out for the next six weeks. Aside from that, Jurgen Klopp should have his key men all available and Mo Salah will still be in a buoyant mood after playing a crucial role in sending Egypt to the World Cup in midweek.
What We Sayin’?
United are without a win in their last four games in all competitions against Liverpool – with the last three clashes resulting in a draw. However, this season has seen United find the net on a frequent basis in Mourinho’s second season in charge. Against a shaky home defence and with their power in the air, we fancy them to have plenty of success. A 1-3 away win is a 20/1 shot.
Burnley have had a solid start to the season and will have a few players in high spirits – including the likes of Jeff Hendrick and Stephen Ward – following their displays in helping Ireland win in Wales and with it, ensuring they still have a chance of getting to the World Cup next summer. However, they haven’t beaten West Ham since December 2011.
The Hammers have an excellent record against the Clarets and have won the last five against the Lancashire outfit, and how Slaven Bilic would like to extend that victorious run against Saturday’s opponents, with there being pressure on his job seemingly on a weekly basis. However, the Londoners are yet to win on the road in their four outings so far, conceding 10 goals in their four trips – only Palace have conceded more away from home.
What We Sayin’?
A tough one to call but we have a feeling both sides will probably settle for a point and that’s what we’re going for. A draw and BTTS is a 100/30 shout.
Palace are still without a goal in their opening seven games of the campaign and Chelsea have been in the goals in their first seven. They have won all three of their Premier League games on the road this term and even without Alvaro Morata, the Blues should have no problems in sweeping aside a Palace side who are already onto their second manager of the campaign following Frank de Boer’s three games in charge – the bad news for Roy Hodgson is that Saturday will be his third match in charge of the south Londoners.
There hasn’t been a draw in the last 12 meetings, with the last time both sides went away with a point coming way back in 1995. Palace have won just three of those dozen games and with confidence low, we see absolutely no hope for them against the Premier League Champions, even though Antonio Conte will be without key cog N’Golo Kante. It’s likely it’ll be Cesc Fabregas and Tiemoue Bakayoko in midfield, which will still have too much steel, skill and quality for the visitors at Selhurst Park.
What We Sayin’?
We’re still yet to work out whether Michy Batshuayi will start in place of the injured Morata or whether Conte will opt for Willian in a striking role, but either way, we’re backing Fabregas to score first in a comfortable 0-3 Chelsea win at 40/1.
Three managers prior to Pep Guardiola, Mark Hughes was in charge of Manchester City as City really started to flex their muscle, but this time around it’s Hughes returning to familiar surroundings as the visitors aim to beat City for only the third time in the last 17 meetings in all competitions. The last clash between the two ended in a 0-0 scoreline at the Etihad Stadium in March this year, but City are a different animal these days, even without Sergio Aguero, who’s just returned to light training following a car accident in Amsterdam a couple of weeks ago.
Stoke are yet to win on the road in the Premier League this term, losing two of the three games away and scoring just the two goals, but only conceding four in those matches, too. Peter Crouch went into the Guinness World Record books this week for the amount of headers scored in the Premier League and may well get the nod to start after bagging the winner against former club Southampton prior to the international break. Crouchy’s awkwardness and height could well cause City problems, but so will the attacking prowess of Gabriel Jesus, David Silva and Kevin De Bruyne at the other end.
What We Sayin’?
A big win for City on home turf. We fancy Belgian playmaker De Bruyne to score first at 19/4.
Two sides who many tipped to be battling at the bottom of the Premier League come the end of the season meet in south Wales in what could well be pivotal as to who stays up and who heads to the Championship in May 2018. These two haven’t met since March 2008, with history suggesting the visitors have the upper hand against the Welsh outfit.
Huddersfield have won five of the last seven clashes and sit pretty comfortably in the Premier League table at this moment in time, whilst Swansea know a win will take them out of the bottom three in the top tier. Everything Huddersfield have done well this term appears to have come through Aaron Mooy and he’ll once again be crucial for David Wagner’s side as they look to continue their fine start to life in the top flight.
What We Sayin’?
Too tough to call, both sides will probably take a point in truth and that’s what we reckon they’ll both get, so everybody goes away happy-ish. A 1-1 scoreline is a 19/4 punt.
The Wembley factor still looms over Tottenham in their early days since their move to the national stadium, but a home clash against lowly AFC Bournemouth, who sit 19th in the Premier League after a stick beginning to their third campaign in the top flight. Talisman Harry Kane is bang in form right now and you’d have to expect the England man – who’s scored 15 goals in his last ten games for club and country – to continue his scoring streak. The forward has also scored in his last six games.
The Cherries have lost three of their four games against Spurs since reforming, and they haven’t scored in their last three games against the North Londoners, which will be a concern for Eddie Howe. However, they do head to the capital armed with Jermain Defoe, who, of course, played for Tottenham over two spells, and Defoe is likely to be in the XI, with Josh King a doubt with a hamstring injury picked up on international duty for Norway in the week.
What We Sayin’?
Kane to score first in a comfortable 3-0 home win is a 14/1 shot.
Only 14 miles separate the two home grounds of these two, so it’s a fairly local trip for the likes of Alexis Sanchez, who has spent the last week trying – and failing – to get Chile to the World Cup next summer, playing in South America. Arsene Wenger managed his first ever Gunners game 21 years ago this week and in that time he’s tackled Watford ten times, holding an impressive record against the Hornets who have appeared to lack sting when taking on Arsenal in the past. Wenger’s been triumphant in eight of those ten matches and there has been just one draw in the 26 meetings they’ve ever had.
But this season has seen Arsenal dominant at home but troubled on the road in the Premier League. They’ve yet to win away from the Emirates Stadium but since Wenger’s reign, they’ve won every trip to Watford, which suggests he knows what to do when heading to Hertfordshire. Despite their tricky start to this season, they somehow sit in fifth after recovering from their disgraceful performance at Liverpool a few weeks ago.
What We Sayin’?
Watford are a different animal this season, and we have a feeling this won’t be as easy as many expect. We expect Arsenal to just about have enough to beat Marco Silva’s hosts and we’re backing Alexandre Lacazette to score first at Vicarage Road – an 11/4 shout.
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