FOOTBALL BETTING: With 3 games to play and 1 point between them it’s anyone’s guess as to whether Chelsea or United will win the League. Chris Hutcheon previews this weekend’s matches.
As much as 92 minutes into Saturday’s Manchester derby, all major issues towards the top of the table looked just about settled. However, Paul Scholes’ header deep into injury-time at Eastlands gave Manchester United a glimmer of hope in the title race, before Chelsea’s defeat at Tottenham blew it wide open and also put Spurs in the box seat for the final Champions League place.
As luck would have it Sir Alex Ferguson’s men now meet a Tottenham team that has already had a major influence at the top by recording back-to-back wins against Arsenal and Chelsea, however, they are unlikely to make it an impressive hat trick at Old Trafford, where they are bet365’s 6/1 outsiders.
United can be backed at 1/2 (Paddy Power) to overcome Harry Redknapp’s troops and with top spot up for grabs for 24 hours at least, Fergie’s charges will relish the chance to pile pressure on Chelsea. At Stamford Bridge on Sunday however, Carlo Ancelotti’s men can reclaim first place with a victory over Stoke; a result Stan James rate at 1/6.
Arsenal’s title dream ended as they capitulated at Wigan and the demoralised Gunners could struggle to pick themselves up against Manchester City.
The latter are desperate for points in the battle for fourth and although they’re a risky proposition at 3/1 with Jaxx.com, Victor Chandler’s 2/1 chalked against City in their ‘Draw No Bet’ is worth considering at the Emirates while Roberto Mancini’s men also catch the eye at a chunky 6/4 (Ladbrokes) to capture fourth place ahead of Spurs (4/5, Stan James).
At the bottom, Gianfranco Zola will be demanding an improvement following his West Ham side’s lacklustre showing at Anfield and they look well placed at 4/5 with Betfred to send Wigan home empty-handed. Chalked up by Partybets at 5/4, Hull too can boost their survival hopes, by beating travel-sick Sunderland but Burnley are 8/13 (totesport) to lose to Liverpool.
Subsequently the Clarets are a banker for the drop at 1/25 with Betdaq and despite their chances of victory the Tigers, at 1/5 with the same firm, should take the last relegation place.
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