EPL 2012-13: Complete Guide and Betting Tips to Second Week of the Season

Frank WagnerCorrespondent IAugust 24, 2012

EPL 2012-13: Complete Guide and Betting Tips to Second Week of the Season

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    Let's be honest with each other here: last week's tips were not a resounding success.

    Okay, they were a downright failure.

    But let's buck up and get our money back this week.

    After last week's interesting results, this weekend offers up some mouth-watering matchups that are sure to please.

    So what should we expect from this second week of the Premier League season? And what can we do to make a few bucks while enjoying the action?

    Here is a guide, complete with betting tips, to this week's action.

Swansea vs. West Ham: Saturday, 7:45 EDT, Liberty Stadium

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    How they fared last week

    It's the battle of two relative surprises.

    Despite a bit of turmoil, Swansea got the result of the weekend, defeating QPR 5-0 away from home.

    Meanwhile, West Ham marked their return to the Premier League with a 1-0 win against Aston Villa.

     

    Odds

    Swansea: 11-10

    Draw: 23-10

    West Ham: 13-5

     

    Biggest Questions

    Just how bad off were these two sides' opponents last week?

    Can West Ham find form away from home?

     

    Prediction

    Even though QPR looked in disarray, Swansea's 5-0 win away from home was still impressive. West Ham's win over Aston Villa could have been an emotional high.

    I'll go Swansea 2-0.

Aston Villa vs. Everton: Saturday, 10:00 EDT, Villa Park

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    How they fared last week

    It's a tale of two very different 1-0 results for these two sides.

    Villa lost 1-0 to newly promoted West Ham, a result they cannot be happy with.

    Everton won 1-0 over last year's runners-up Manchester United, a result the Toffees are thrilled with.

     

    Odds

    Aston Villa: 19-10

    Draw: 12-5

    Everton: 7-5

     

    Biggest Questions

    Can Aston Villa improve on their home-field advantage, which was worst among clubs that stayed up last season?

    Was Everton's win over Manchester United a flash in the pan?

     

    Prediction

    I don't know how much I trust Everton to win back-to-back matches at the start of a season, but this one should be theirs.

    I'll go Everton 1-0.

Manchester United vs. Fulham: Saturday, 10:00 EDT, Old Trafford

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    How they fared last week

    United suffered a shocking 1-0 defeat to Everton at Goodison Park after being unable to defend some guy with an afro.

    Fulham forgot about the troubles with their American and throttled Norwich 5-0.

     

    Odds

    Man U: 2-7

    Draw: 9-2

    Fulham: 10-1

     

    Biggest Questions

    Will United be more prepared to deal with their injury issues this week?

    Can Fulham capitalize on what Fellaini did last week?

     

    Prediction

    Despite last week's results, I doubt United can be flat two weeks in a row, especially with the scene shifted. And a we have Dempsey-less Fulham, who was so potent in attack.

    I'll go Man U 3-1.

Norwich vs. QPR: Saturday, 10:00 EDT, Carrow Road

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    How they fared last week

    It's a battle of the worst here.

    Both suffered 5-0 defeats, Norwich to Fulham and QPR to Swansea.

     

    Odds

    Norwich: 5-4

    Draw: 12-5

    QPR: 11-5

     

    Biggest Questions

    Can these sides play any worse this week than last?

    Will Norwich respond to home-field advantage?

     

    Prediction

    I'm not sure how much I trust this one, but I'm backing Norwich here.

    Of the two clubs' 5-0 losses last week, QPR's was a bit worse as it came at home (and really could have been 10).

    I'm thinking Norwich bounce back here, especially given that they've beaten QPR four of the past five times the two have met.

    Norwich 2-1.

Southampton vs. Wigan: Saturday, 10:00 EDT, St Mary's Stadium

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    How they fared last week

    The first two fixtures were a bit tough for these two clubs.

    Southampton put up an incredible fight against the defending Premier League champions, coming from 1-0 down to take a 2-1 lead over City. Unfortunately, they lost it 3-2 from there and have no points to show for it.

    Meanwhile, Wigan started off as badly as possible against the defending European champions, falling 2-0 behind before 10 minutes passed. They settled down from there, but the scoreline never changed.

     

    Odds

    Southampton: 11-10

    Draw: 12-5

    Wigan: 5-2

     

    Biggest Questions

    Will Southampton put on a show for their loyal supporters?

    How will Wigan respond to the loss of Victor Moses?

     

    Prediction

    I'm seeing a draw here.

    It's easy to overreact to Southampton's success against City last week and see them as a bottom-table world-beater, but they still haven't proven themselves to any extent.

    Wigan will be missing Victor Moses, who was influential against Chelsea (and is now on Chelsea), but I see them having enough to take a point. 1-1 draw.

Sunderland vs. Reading: Saturday, 10:00 EDT, Stadium of Light

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    How they fared last week

    Sunderland parked their bus in the Emirates and grabbed a well-earned point.

    Reading, on the other hand, had two matches. Last weekend, they pulled a point out of the fire against Stoke on a last-minute penalty. At midweek, they put up quite the fight against Chelsea, but fell victim to some poor goalkeeping and officiating in a 4-2 loss.

     

    Odds

    Sunderland: 17-20

    Draw: 5-2

    Reading: 10-3

     

    Biggest Questions

    Can Sunderland effectively change their style to accommodate the rise in the level of competition?

    How will Reading cope with three Premier League matches in the span of a week?

     

    Prediction

    I don't see Reading coping too well with this third match in a week. The team barely scraped a draw at home to one of the worst away sides in the Premier League and is mostly new to the league.

    Meanwhile, Sunderland looked very organized defensively against Arsenal and proved their attacking ability last season.

    I'll go Sunderland 2-0. 

Tottenham vs. West Brom: Saturday, 10:00 EDT, White Hart Lane

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    How they fared last week

    West Brom got an incredible result to start off their season, defeating Liverpool 3-0 at the Hawthorns.

    Tottenham, on the other hand, suffered a disappointing 2-1 loss to Newcastle.

     

    Odds

    Tottenham: 1-2

    Draw: 10-3

    West Brom: 11-2

     

    Biggest Questions

    Can Adebayor pick up his goal-scoring where he left off for Spurs?

    Was West Brom's big win against Liverpool just a mirage?

     

    Prediction

    This one should be a tight affair, as Tottenham have won just three of their last five meetings at the Lane, and each by just a goal.

    I expect Spurs to take a few more of their chances this week and take this one.

    Tottenham 2-1.

Chelsea vs. Newcastle: Saturday, 12:30 EDT, Stamford Bridge

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    How they fared last week

    Chelsea won two matches in the past week. Last weekend, they defeated Wigan 2-0 after scoring both within 10 minutes of kickoff. At midweek, they came back from 2-1 down to Reading to win 4-2.

    Newcastle had a fine 2-1 victory over Tottenham last week.

     

    Odds

    Chelsea: 1-2

    Draw: 10-3

    Newcastle: 11-2

     

    Biggest Questions

    Can Hazard continue to play incredibly in his first Premier League matches?

    Are Newcastle ready to make another statement about their place at the top of the league?

     

    Prediction

    I'm going against the grain on this one.

    In May, Newcastle were able to take advantage of Chelsea's busy schedule to grab a 2-0 victory at Stamford Bridge. I see a similar result being possible here.

    The Blues were a little less than convincing against Reading and could be ready for a bit of a letdown.

    I'll go Newcastle 2-1.

Stoke City vs. Arsenal: Sunday, 8:30 EDT, Britannia Stadium

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    How they fared last week

    Stoke had a rare away win slip through their grasp, as they drew 1-1 to Reading on a last-second penalty.

    Arsenal fought to a 0-0 with Sunderland, dominating the match but never finding the breakthrough.

     

    Odds

    Stoke: 5-2

    Draw: 12-5

    Arsenal: 11-10

     

    Biggest Questions

    Is Stoke's home-field advantage still a force to be reckoned with?

    Can Arsenal overcome their goal problems?

     

    Prediction

    In four Premier League meetings a the Britannia, Arsenal have lost twice and only won once.

    Sunday might be a second win.

    Stoke looked tired against Reading, and I think Arsenal will have had enough of the chatter about their goal-scoring.

    It'll be tough, but the Gunners will snatch it.

    Arsenal 1-0.

Liverpool vs. Manchester City: Sunday, 11:00 EDT, Anfield

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    How they fared last week

    Liverpool had one of their worst opening day results of all time, falling to West Brom 3-0.

    The defending champions avoided blushes at the expense of newly promoted Southampton, coming back from 2-1 down to take it 3-2.

     

    Odds

    Liverpool: 21-10

    Draw: 12-5

    Man City: 13-10

     

    Biggest Questions

    Will Brendan Rodgers' system improve for Liverpool this week?

    Was City's occasional lack of focus last week a one-time thing, or will we see it again?

     

    Prediction

    I think we will see an improved Liverpool this week, but I still think City are better.

    City 2-1.

Tips

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    Here are my thoughts of the best six picks, based upon likelihood and value:

    Swansea (11-10) over West Ham

    Everton (7-5) over Aston Villa

    Sunderland (17-20) over Reading

    Man City (13-10) over Liverpool

    Upset pick: Newcastle (11-2) over Chelsea

    Prop of the week: Arsenal vs. Stoke, Under 2.5 (8-11)

     

    Season totals

    Predictions: 3-8

    Props: 1-6

    Money off of props (based on £5 bets on each): -£21.92