The finish line is in sight for all 20 Premier League teams. The title race is set to go the wire, four teams remain within inches of each other as they push for a Champions League spot and Cardiff are fighting for their lives, looking to make up a five-point deficit to avoid relegation.
With the top six all televised, this week’s Saturday 3pm kick-offs preview focuses on three of those teams still at relegation threat and the jostling in mid-table.
BRIGHTON & HOVE ALBION vs AFC Bournemouth
Brighton are the only Premier League team with seven matches remaining. Chris Hughton’s side are five points above the drop zone and can make themselves as good as safe with positive results this week.
The Seagulls are looking to bounce back from FA Cup semi-final defeat to Manchester City when they host Bournemouth – they follow that with a showdown against Cardiff at the Amex in midweek.
Bournemouth’s record since their red-hot start leaves plenty to be desired. The Cherries have little to play for in the remainder of the season, and that has been the case for a few weeks.
Finishing in the top half is almost out of reach, leaving Eddie Howe’s side in cruise control until their summer break.
The 27/20 on Brighton to win is one of the best Premier League betting options this weekend. The hosts are solid at home and will be confident of a victory against a Bournemouth side with 12 road defeats in 16 matches.
TIP: Brighton to win @ 27/20
PREDICTED SCORE: Brighton 2-0 Bournemouth (Priced at 19/2 with 888sport)
BURNLEY vs Cardiff City
Burnley are on 36 points thanks to victories in their last two outings. The Clarets battled to a 3-1 victory away to Bournemouth last Saturday, putting them eight points clear of 18th placed Cardiff and within touching distance of safety.
Neil Warnock desperately needs a win here. They were hard done by in defeat to Chelsea two matches ago and unsurprisingly lost to Manchester City last time out.
Time is running out for the Welsh club to close the gap, and their away record hardly inspires confidence ahead of the trip to the north west.
It’s hard to see past a home win at Turf Moor on Saturday afternoon. Burnley have recovered from a brief blip and Cardiff have only scored nine goals away from home all season.
TIP: Burnley to win @ 9/10
PREDICTED SCORE: Burnley 1-0 Cardiff (Priced at 11/2 with 888sport)
Fulham vs EVERTON
Fulham will not have played in 11 days by the time this match kicks off. Caretaker boss Scott Parker saw his side thrashed 4-1 last week to confirm their inevitable relegation.
A slight improvement in performances under Parker has not translated into positive results as the defence remains leaky and the attack is too often ineffective.
Wins to nil over Chelsea, West Ham and Arsenal represent Everton’s best run of the season. The Toffees sit only a point behind seventh and will be eyeing up the ‘best of the rest’ spot that they were favourites for back in August.
Marco Silva has overcome a difficult period and questions about his future, meaning a top half finish will be a satisfactory campaign.
Fulham will be hoping for reasons to be positive in the final weeks of the season without the burden of fighting relegation. The west London club have lost nine in a row, though, making it impossible to look past 3/4 on an Everton win.
TIP: Everton to win @ 3/4
PREDICTED SCORE: Fulham 1-3 Everton (Priced at 23/2 with 888sport)
SOUTHAMPTON vs Wolverhampton Wanderers
Southampton’s home defeat to Liverpool was a setback, though three wins in their four matches before that put them in a good position to avoid the drop.
A win here could see Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side climb as high as 14th. The improvement under Hasenhuttl has been substantial with Saints performing like a mid-table side since the managerial change.
Wolves are in pole position to finish seventh because of their game in hand on Leicester. It will be interesting to see how they react after their gutting extra time loss in the FA Cup semi-final last weekend.
Nuno Espirito Santo’s side have been one of the success stories this season, but they could yet slip into the bottom half if performances drop off.
Southampton are a good price at 11/25 to avoid defeat. Wolves’ league form has been patchy of late, and they have taken just two of the last 12 available points on the road.
TIP: Southampton to win OR draw @ 11/25
PREDICTED SCORE: Southampton 1-1 Wolves (Priced at 5/1 with 888sport)
*Odds subject to change - correct at time of writing*