The English Premier League made its return last weekend. The mixture of entertainment, shocks and excitement continued off where it had left off for the past 21 years.
Chelsea went top of the league after beating Aston Villa midweek to make it two wins from two under Jose Mourinho. Manchester City had led the league on Monday night after a 4-0 thrashing of Newcastle. Two days earlier Manchester United had topped the table with a 4-1 win at Swansea City.
Five of last season’s top 7 began their 2013-14 campaign with a win. Everton were held 2-2 at Norwich City despite controlling two-thirds of possession in their first competitive game under Roberto Martinez.
Arsenal lost at home to Aston Villa to put pressure on Arsene Wenger. His side responded with a 3-0 win at a poor-performing Fenerbahce side midweek in their Champions League qualifier.
All three of the sides promoted from the Championship last season were beaten in their opening game without scoring a single goal between them.
The big game this weekend is undoubtedly the Monday night clash between Manchester United and Chelsea. Before that though, newly-promoted Cardiff City host Manchester City, Fulham host Arsenal in a London derby and Aston Villa host Liverpool in a fixture list that is set to make for an exciting bank holiday weekend.
Here are you weekly Premier League betting tips:
Fulham vs Arsenal Saturday 24 August 12:45
*Fulham created just one shot on target at Sunderland in their opening game
*Fulham ended last season with four straight defeats at Craven Cottage
*Fulham goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg is a doubt with a shoulder injury picked up on his debut
*Santi Cazorla is fit to start. His creativity in the centre of midfield is capable of unlocking a Fulham defence that is slow in the centre
*Theo Walcott’s pace down the right wing should see the England forward cause problems and get in behind the home team’s defence
*Arsene Wenger often hits back under pressure. Last season they were beaten by Blackburn in the FA Cup which was followed up by a 2-0 win at Bayern Munich
Recommended bet: Arsenal to win 23/20 BetFred
Cardiff City vs Manchester City Sunday 25 August 16:00
*Cardiff City created just one shot on target in a 2-0 defeat to West Ham last weekend
*Cardiff City have not recruited many players having played in the Championship last season
*Left winger Matthew Jarvis recorded his first Premier League assist for West Ham last weekend against Cardiff
*Manchester City looked very impressive in their 4-0 thrashing of Newcastle on Monday night
*No fatigue concerns for their strike force of Sergio Agüero, Edin Džeko, Álvaro Negredo and Stevan Jovetić this weekend
*Pablo Zabaleta and Jesús Navas made an impressive combination down the right wing causing a number of problems for the opposition defence last time out
Recommended bets: Manchester City to win 4/9 Paddy Power
Manchester City to win -1.5 goals 5/4 bet365
Tottenham Hotspur vs Swansea City Sunday 25 August 16:00
*Roberto Soldado scored in both of his competitive games for Tottenham Hotspur since becoming club’s record signing over the summer
*Aaron Lennon was a threat down the right wing last Sunday
*Tottenham opened this season with two clean sheets in Premier League and Europa League and finished last season with a clean sheet in their final game
*Swansea City dominated possession in early stages versus Manchester United but failed to create many significant chances
*Swansea City defence still allowing a number of shots on goal – will invite the likes of Soldado, Nacer Chadli, Gylfi Sigurdsson and Paulinho in on goal
*Swansea have lost the last three meetings with the London-based side
Recommended bet: Tottenham to win 8/13 Paddy Power
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This article was first posted on August 23, 2013