EPL Picks 10/17-10/20 – Featured Games

After the international break, the Premier League returns with a very tasty slate of games, headlined by Arsenal’s trip to the Etihad and Liverpool’s short trek to play at Everton. Here are my picks for this weekend.

Man City vs Arsenal

ManCity (-215) hosts Arsenal (+575) in what I think is a pivotal match in Arsenal’s season. Arteta is finally starting to put together the kind of squad he envisioned, and the arrival of Thomas Partey will certainly help. Even though ManCity looked anemic in its draw versus Leeds and got run off the park by Leicester 5-3 just a few weeks back, Arsenal at +575 to win feels like a trap. Despite improvements in roster and coaching, Arsenal isn’t at this level yet. That said, you can’t dismiss ManCity’s creaky form.

PICK:  DRAW (+400)

Everton vs Liverpool

Everton (+295) hosts Liverpool (-115) in the first real test of the season for Everton. Everton has looked dynamite, but it feels like a late summer mirage that cannot withstand the cold winds of autumn… which, if you care, is precisely what I said about Leicester in their 2015-2016 season. Still, despite the intensity of the rivalry (or maybe because of it?), I think Liverpool’s class is will be an uncomfortable wakeup for Everton.

PICK: Liverpool WIN (-115)

Chelsea vs Southampton

Chelsea (-200) – Southampton (+500)

I see neither an upset nor any hidden value in a draw (+350) or win play for Southampton. To me, this is an easy pick.

PICK: Chelsea WIN (-200)

Newcastle v. Man Utd

Newcastle (+400) – Manchester United (-155).  It’s still way too early, but ManU has the scent of a club in collapse. At +335, a draw is a good bet, and at +400 a Newcastle win is too. In the end, I’m putting my cabbage on a draw because Newcastle has been good, not great, this season.

PICK: DRAW (+335)

Crystal Palace vs Brighton

This has “walk away” written all over it. Gun to my head, I would put money on a draw (+230) between these two evenly matched teams, but I don’t see anything in here suggesting that one team has a distinct tactical, talent, or form advantage over the other. But since I gotta make a pick…

PICK: DRAW (+230)

West Bromwich (+135) v Burnley (+205)

I mean, I could copy-paste my comments for Crystal Palace-Brighton here, but that would be lazy. So, I will instead offer some Spanish commentary that is completely different, and not at all what I just said put through Google Translate because I don’t actually speak Spanish. Si me viera obligado a tomar una decisión, pondría dinero en un empate (+230) entre estos dos equipos igualados, pero no veo nada aquí que sugiera que un equipo tiene una ventaja táctica, de talento o de forma distinta sobre otro. Pero como tengo que elegir …

PICK: DRAW (+230)

And, as usual, a picture of a dinosaur kicking a soccer ball.