Steven Fletcher is a popular punt with the team this week but who's backed what?
Well the postponement of last week's first home game of the season put a bit of a dampener on all of our bets and we didn't really fare any better looking further afield than our beloved SAFC!
It's about time we restored some faith and picked a couple of winners, Although you'll see from the results table below, there's one set of tips you certainly should avoid. Anyway, here's the rest of the Roker Report team's picks for this weekend's action...
Week Two Recap
|Pundit||Last Week's Profit/Loss||Current Balance|
With the Sunderland vs Reading fixture called off we were all refunded our SAFC based bets, but no-one was able to back a winner with their second bet. Young Weatherspoon was probably the closest as his 2-0 prediction in the Swansea vs West Ham game fell just a goal short of bringing him in a nice 8/1 win - close but no cigar.
Onto this week's picks:
There is an overwhelming sense of optimism surrounding Sunderland at the moment, with the signings of Fletcher and Johnson blowing away the negativity that surrounded the club before the Arsenal game.
Although the former Wolves man didn't look 100% on Tuesday night, I'm going to back the encounter against Morecambe to have done him the world of good, and for him to notch the first goal at the Liberty Stadium. However, the Swans have looked very good going forward this term, and although my gut instinct is to say that a 0-0 is more likely, with us shutting up shop as we did at the Emirates, I'll plump for 1-1 instead.
Even a minimal £1 is worth it, given the extremely generous odds.
Toulouse have made a fine start to the Ligue 1 season, and I fully expect that to continue against recently promoted Stade de Reims when the two teams meet at the Stade Municipal on Saturday night, with the home side taking all three points and keeping a clean sheet in the process.
For as long as I have watched TFC (going on for two years now) they have been built on a solid defence, conceding the joint lowest amount of goals last season with champions Montpellier, and I don't expect Ali Ahmada to be picking the ball out of his net on Saturday.
- Sunderland vs Swansea to finish 1-1 and Steven Fletcher to score first - 40/1 - Stake £1
- Toulouse to win to nil - 7/5 - Stake £6
Both sides are riding the wave of optimism that new signings and a good start to the new season generates, but the visit of Sunderland will be Michael Laudrup's sternest test in his flegling Swansea tenure to date. The Black Cats' back four is significantly more coherent than the Swans have faced so far, and its attack has simmering potential. In a game that could easily either way, an away win represents decent value.
Having backed one away win already, I'm going to back three more. Everton are flying at the moment and although West Brom are regular party poopers, David Moyes' men should have enough to record three straight Premier League wins. On Sunday, Arsenal are unlikely to rest key players as Manchester City did at Anfield one week earlier, and are a big price against a Liverpool side looking for a first league win. To complete the treble, Manchester United should be too strong for newly-promoted Southampton.
- Sunderland to beat Swansea - 5/2 - Stake £2
- Everton, Arsenal & Manchester United treble - 14/1 - Stake £5
This week has to be the week. If not through luck or my own good judgment but through the law of averages. This has to be the one where I finally get off the board with some money in the bank... It's not going to be is it? Well I'm locked into this for the rest of the season anyway, so here goes this week's "best" bets...
For the Sunderland game this week against Swansea I'm in a relatively confident mood. Steven Fletcher opens his account for the club in my imagination, and we win. Therefore a 12/1 wincast on that exact outcome will do me for £3 at Bet365
Looking around the rest of the games, I'm going for another accumulator and I fancy a Premier League trio to all bag wins. Fulham have looked impressive of late, and West Ham simply haven't so I see the Cottagers taking points at Upton Park. I also see Wigan picking up where they left off against Southampton by beating Stoke City, with Everton winning at West Brom to complete a 14/1 treble. I'll stick £2 on that please.
- Steven Fletcher to score anytime and SAFC to win - 12/1 - Stake £3
- Fulham, Everton & Wigan treble - 14/1 - Stake £2
Along with most Sunderland fans I have been delighted with the clubs exploits in the transfer market so far and was impressed with Tuesday night's display. Whilst Swansea have looked like a side with potential to do well so far this term, although it is still early days. Having blown away the cobwebs on Tuesday night I fancy Steven Fletcher to make his mark with his first goal for the club and 11/4 aren't bad odds for him to find the net anytime.
For my second bet I am going to turn my attentions to The Hawthornes where the impressive Everton are the visitors. The Toffees have opened the scoring in 13 of their last 14 games, a standout stat which certainly caught my eye and will be where I am placing a couple of quid this weekend.
- Steven Fletcher to score anytime - 11/4 - Stake £2.50
- Everton to score first - 21/20 - Stake £2.50
Make no bones about it, Swansea is a tough place to go to. Two games so far: two wins, eight goals and two clean sheets. Sunderland's trip to the Liberty Stadium tomorrow will be no easy affair. And yet, Wearside is abuzz with anticipation and excitement. Tuesday night's win over Morecambe offered a tantalising glimpse of the new red and white strikeforce. It would be "typical Sunderland" for us to then go and lose at the weekend, but I'm tipping O'Neill to keep the players focused, and eke out a tough 2-1 win in Wales.
I've always been a fan of accumulators, despite never ever winning one. Ever. But, God loves a trier, so here I go again. West Ham have a tricky home tie with Fulham who have impressed so far, but their loss of Moussa Dembele (and possibly Clint Dempsey?) will have rattled Martin Jol's side. David Moyes has once again got Everton set up the right way, and finally done it at the start of the season - I see a trip to West Brom as tough but likely to yield a third straight win. Wigan and Stoke will be a tight affair but, with all the worry surrounding Tony Pulis and his men's fortunes - after a fairly terrible run of form since the turn of the year eight months ago - it would be just about right if they battled to their first three points of the season against a very up and down Wigan outfit.
- Sunderland to win 2-1 - 12/1 - Stake £1
- West Ham, Everton and Stoke treble - 13/1 - Stake £1
What's your best bets for the weekend? Who's going to win big this weekend? How badly is Simon Walsh going to fail again this weekend? Leave a comment below!