As the 2019/20 Premier League season nears its end, there are five hugely important games taking place on Saturday, July 11. European-chasers Sheffield United and Chelsea go head-to-head, while Norwich hosts West Ham for a vital relegation six-pointer.
Let’s start by taking a look at the full EPL fixture list for Saturday.
Watford vs. Newcastle United
Norwich City vs. West Ham United
Liverpool vs. Burnley
Sheffield United vs. Chelsea
Brighton & Hove Albion vs. Manchester City
Watford has the opportunity to steer further clear of the bottom three, although Newcastle won’t be willing to let that happen easily. The top two are also in action, with Liverpool hosting in-form Burnley and Manchester City visiting Brighton.
I share my predictions for all of Saturday’s Premier League games before selecting a couple of EPL betting picks for July 11. Let’s get right into it!
Watford and Newcastle to Draw
Watford will be aiming to build on their first win since the restart when Newcastle United visits Vicarage Road. The Hornets are still just one place clear of the drop zone, although a vital victory over Norwich last time out has put some daylight between them and the bottom three.
Following a draw with Leicester in their first game after the lay-off, Watford suffered three straight defeats at the hands of Burnley, Southampton, and Chelsea. Things were looking bleak for Nigel Pearson’s men, but they managed to come from behind to beat bottom club Norwich, thanks to Danny Welbeck’s stunning overhead kick.
Meanwhile, Newcastle’s six-game unbeaten run was brought to an abrupt end by a ruthless Manchester City on Wednesday. The Magpies managed just a single shot on target and saw a measly 25% possession as the host racked up a whopping 26 shots in a 5-0 thrashing at the Etihad Stadium.
Newcastle drew with Burnley and beat Southampton before the campaign was put on hold, and the team wasted no time in rediscovering their form after the resumption. Victories over Sheff Utd and Bournemouth, along with draws against Aston Villa and West Ham, saw the Magpies secure mid-table safety. But they were quickly brought back down to earth with a bump by Man City.
The Toon has opened up a 12-point lead over Watford, but I can see the battling Hornets getting something from this game.
West Ham to Beat Norwich
West Ham’s recent performances suggest the team has got what it takes to avoid relegation. The Hammers returned to action with back-to-back defeats, but a vital win over Chelsea and a draw with Newcastle have given them a lifeline. Despite suffering a narrow 1-0 defeat to Burnley last time out, West Ham still enjoyed the majority of possession and recorded 19 shots.
David Moyes’ men remain two places above the drop zone, level with Watford on 31 points. However, their superior goal difference gives them a slight edge over the Hornets. They are by no means out of the woods just yet, but another positive result on Saturday would significantly boost their survival chances.
The Canaries needed to hit the ground running when the campaign resumed. But unfortunately for them, that hasn’t happened. Five straight defeats have left Norwich rock bottom of the Premier League table, and with just four games remaining, an immediate return to the Championship is looking likely.
Following promotion from the second tier last year, it’s fair to say that Daniel Farke’s side has struggled to adapt to the demands of top-flight football this term. Norwich has shown glimpses of promise throughout the season. But having managed just two wins in their previous 21 league games, the club can’t really have any complaints about their current position.
I’m backing West Ham to take another step towards safety by taking all three points from a helpless Norwich outfit.
Liverpool to Beat Burnley
Liverpool has swiftly put their 4-0 embarrassment to Man City behind them with a couple of classy performances against two of the division’s lesser teams. The newly-crowned champion bounced back with a 2-0 victory over Aston Villa before a Mohamed Salah double helped the Reds claim a routine 3-1 win against Brighton.
With just two home games remaining this term, Liverpool is on the verge of becoming the first Premier League team to win every home game in a single season. Youngsters like Curtis Jones and Neco Williams have benefitted from the substitution rule change since the restart. But with the record in sight, Jurgen Klopp is likely to revert back to his strongest starting XI on Saturday.
However, Burnley isn’t going to make life easy for Klopp’s record chasers. Despite operating on a shoestring budget, Sean Dyche continues to work wonders in Lancashire. The Clarets have only lost one of their previous 12 Premier League games, and they will be confident of spoiling the party at Anfield.
Having said that, recent 1-0 wins against West Ham, Crystal Palace, and Watford weren’t entirely convincing. Burnley was hammered 5-0 by Man City in their first game after the lay-off, so I think the Clarets will struggle to compete with Liverpool.
Sheff Utd and Chelsea to Draw
John Egan has certainly picked a good time to discover that he can actually score goals! The Irishman went 30 EPL games without scoring this season, but he has now netted twice in his last two appearances. After rescuing a draw against Burnley, Egan bagged a 93rd-minute winner to see off European-rival Wolves last time out.
Having taken just one point from three games after the restart, Sheff Utd’s remarkable campaign was in danger of being ruined. But the Blades have lifted themselves to within one point of sixth-place Wolves with two wins and a draw in their previous three outings.
In the meantime, Chelsea has won four of their five games since the resumption. The team’s outstanding run has seen the Blues leapfrog Leicester and climb to third in the table. USMNT star Christian Pulisic has been the driving force behind Chelsea’s recent success, notching up three goals and two assists since soccer returned.
Both these teams are in fine form, so this is destined to be a closely fought contest between two impressive sides. Chelsea leads Sheff Utd by nine points, but the Blades are more than capable of snatching a draw here.
Man City to Beat Brighton
Man City’s topsy-turvy run of results continued with a 5-0 drubbing of Newcastle on Wednesday. Since the campaign got back underway, the Cityzens have won their last four home games by an aggregate scoreline of 17-0. However, the team’s unexplainable form has seen City suffer three consecutive away defeats.
It’s difficult to explain exactly why Pep Guardiola’s side has enjoyed such contrasting fortunes lately. Still, I can’t see Man City losing four away games in a row. The ease with which City blew away Newcastle suggests that Brighton is likely to be on the receiving end of a heavy home defeat.
Victories over Arsenal and Norwich, along with a draw against Leicester, have seen the Seagulls open up a comfortable lead over the bottom three. It looks like the club has done enough to avoid relegation, but recent defeats to Manchester United and Liverpool prove that Brighton is nowhere near the country’s top sides.
Defensive mistakes gifted Liverpool two goals on Wednesday, and if Brighton’s backline is sloppy against Man City, the team will undoubtedly be made to pay for their errors. I’m confident that Man City will end their losing streak on the road with a big win on Saturday.
EPL Picks for Saturday, July 11
Having scoured Saturday’s odds, I believe my Premier League betting picks offer excellent value.
Watford vs. Newcastle – Both Teams to Score (1.90)
I think we will see a fairly open game between these two sides. Watford has been scoring plenty of goals since the restart, but the relegation struggler has conceded in each of their previous six outings. The Hornets will be looking for a positive result this weekend to enhance their survival bid.
On the other hand, Newcastle doesn’t really have anything to play for. The Magpies are miles clear of relegation trouble, but a European spot is also out of reach. With that in mind, the away side is likely to play with an openness, so I’m expecting both teams to score here.
Brighton vs. Man City – Man City to Win and Over 2.5 Goals (2.00)
I’m pretty sure that Man City’s poor away run is the result of some freak results. Guardiola’s men have dominated their opponents and created countless goalscoring opportunities, but they have struggled to find an end product on their travels.
Things couldn’t more different on home soil. The Cityzens have been blowing teams away with ease at the Etihad Stadium, and I think Brighton will feel the full force of City’s ruthless forward line on Saturday. The away win is at 1.30, but I recommend adding the over 2.5 goals market into the mix. This gives you a great opportunity to double your money!