Hammers to avoid defeat in a cracking game

Bournemouth 2.48 v West Ham 3.00; The Draw 3.70
Both Liverpool and Manchester United have relatively easy-looking home games on Saturday afternoon, but both of those matches look quite tricky to find a decent price selection, so we'll look to the other 3pm kick-offs for our three wagers this week, and I'm expecting plenty of entertaining games.
Starting with Bournemouth against West Ham which really should contain at least two or three goals, though I'm finding it difficult to understand why the Cherries are clear favourites in the Match Odds market.
Eddie Howe's men are going through a really poor run of form which started at the beginning of November with that extremely unlucky defeat to Manchester United. It seems they've been out of luck ever since. Bournemouth lost four straight league games before narrowly beating Huddersfield, and they're now on a run of just one win in nine matches in all competitions.
Since beating Brighton just before Christmas the Cherries have drawn once and lost four times, conceding an alarming 17 goals in the process (an average of 3.4 per outing).
West Ham meanwhile have been in quite the opposite form, winning eight and drawing two of their 14 matches since the same weekend as Bournemouth lost to United. There's an argument to say that it's the Hammers that should be favourites to win this encounter, though it's difficult to have too much confidence in Manuel Pellegrini's men following their recent defeat at Burnley.
The Hammers are in much the better form, but they are still capable of throwing in a shocking performance is what I'm trying to say. But by the same token, so too are Bournemouth, and what you usually get when the Cherries take to the field in an open, entertaining game of football.
So I'm going to use the Betfair Sportsbook's Same Game Multi option for my wager here, and I'm taking West Ham to avoid defeat (West Ham or Draw in the Double Chance market) combined with Over 3.5 Goals at a price of 10/3 (or 4.3 to be precise).

Bluebirds can claim victory in huge six-pointer

Newcastle 2.04 v Cardiff 4.40; The Draw 3.40
Newcastle find themselves in the relegation zone following their latest run of winless league games, last week's defeat at Chelsea making it five Premier League matches without a victory.
Rafa Benitez's men can be backed at around even money to beat fellow strugglers Cardiff but that's not a price that remotely interests me given the form of the Magpies and circumstances leading up to this massive six-pointer.
Newcastle not only played 120 minutes of FA Cup football in midweek but in doing so they picked up some crucial injuries, including one to key defender Jamaal Lascelles (pictured below) which will almost certainly mean he will miss the clash against the Bluebirds, while the likes of Jonjo Shelvey, Kennedy, Mohamed Diame and Ciaran Clark are all doubtful.
There's no doubt that Newcastle still have enough quality among their fit players to win this game but I definitely believe they are too short in the betting to claim all three points. They are in the relegation zone because they are one of the worst teams in the division let us not forget.
And it's also worth remembering that the Magpies started the season by losing all of their first five league games at St James' Park, and they are currently on a run of five games in front of their own fans without winning. The Geordie faithful can be very unforgiving, and if their team don't play well from the start they can soon vent their anger.
Cardiff are only one point and one place above Newcastle, so it's not as if we're taking the Magpies on with a sublime side in peak form, but the Bluebirds did at least win their last away league game at Leicester, and five wins and two draws from their last 14 matches is more akin to mid-table form than relegation form.
I fully expect Neil Warnock to set his side up to frustrate Newcastle, knowing that not conceding early will give them a great chance of winning the game. Unless the Magpies come out firing then this should be a very tense and low-scoring affair, and it's one that I believe the away side can pinch.

Saints to win again but Toffees likely to score

Southampton 2.78 v Everton 2.80; The Draw 3.50
Everton are just one of about half a dozen very unpredictable sides in the Premier League and perhaps showed exactly why in last week's victory over Bournemouth. They were woeful for the first half hour and the only mystery is how the Cherries didn't score a few times in what was a wide open game of football.
But to their credit Marco Silva's men turned it around and got the victory, although it was only the Toffees' second league win in their last nine outings, hardly scintillating form.
In that time Everton conceded six at home to Tottenham, then scored five in an away win at Burnley, but then lost back-to-back games against Brighton and Leicester. You just don't know which Everton side is going to turn up. They are very capable of playing some excellent football and scoring a few goals, but very likely to concede one or two also.
Which is why I think both teams to score is worth chancing when the Toffees travel to Southampton on Saturday. I say 'worth chancing' but at an odds-on price it's not our cup of tea so I'm going to push the boat out and back a home win also.
The Saints have shown some real signs of improvement under new boss Ralph Hasenhuttland they're up to 16th in the table following last week's 2-1 win at Leicester. That was Southampton's third league win in six games while they also drew away to Chelsea, so a bit like I mentioned with Cardiff, their recent form is more like a mid-table side than a struggling one.
The Match Odds market can't split these two but home advantage could be key here and I expect the Saints to take advantage of Everton's inconsistency by claiming the points, though not without a scare along the way.
RECOMMENDED BETS
Back West Ham Double Chance/Over 3.5 Gls @ 10/3 (SGM) v Bournemouth
Back Cardiff @ 4.40 to beat Newcastle (best bet)
Back Southampton Win & BTTS @ 5.40 v Everton

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