Premier League Week 29 Preview: Bettors Undecided on North London Derby
- Premier League Week 29 is highlighted by the North London Derby on Saturday between Arsenal-Tottenham (7:30 a.m. on NBC Sports) and the Merseyside Derby on Sunday between Liverpool-Everton (11:15 a.m. ET on NBC Sports).
- Bettors are undecided on Gunners-Spurs, but there's been plenty of line movement and lopsided action across the league.
There are just 10 matchweeks remaining in the 2018-19 Premier League season and every point is crucial in the standings for the title, top-four, top-six and relegation.
In rare midweek action both Liverpool and Manchester City took care of business, albeit in different ways, but Tottenham was dealt a second loss in a row, seemingly extinguishing their faint title hopes.
Liverpool still hold a one-point advantage over Manchester City at the top of the Premier League standings while Spurs have fallen nine points off the pace.
Huddersfield are still stuck in the bottom of the table with 14 points, but they did pull off a late 1-0 win over Wolves on Tuesday night and could even catch Fulham with another victory this weekend. Cardiff, Brighton and Southampton are all battling to avoid the final relegation spot and are within two points of one another.
There were zero draws in Week 28 and they’ve now cost bettors more than 70 units on the season.
2018-19 Season Trends
- Leicester City won their first match after sacking manager Claude Puel and are a league-best +12.92 units on the moneyline this year.
- Draws have hit at just a 19.3% rate in the EPL this season, the lowest we’ve ever tracked via our Bet Labs historical database.
- Favorites dominated Week 28 and are now +7.08 units on the season, but underdogs are also still in the black (barely) with +0.65 units won.
- Overs still have an edge in terms of totals at 52.3% and +5.38 units earned.
For Week 29, I’ve analyzed the entire betting market and provided four value plays (EPL Season Record: 36-66-1, -14.63 units).
(Odds are always on the move until kickoff, so be sure to follow all the latest lines and betting percentages here)
Biggest Line Moves
Clearly the most significant early line movement has been toward the big favorites, which also tend to be popular public bets.
After squeaking by West Ham, bettors are backing Manchester City to respond with a more comfortable win against Bournemouth, a club that just conceded five goals at Arsenal.
The over/under is set at 3.5 goals which is the highest of the weekend, but bettors are still taking the over in addition to Man City -1.5.
If you think the Cherries have any chance of the home upset, they’re available at 11-1 odds.
Sharp action has also hit Chelsea and Manchester United, each emphatic winners in their most recent outings, shifting the lines at least 25 cents.
Chelsea’s opponent, Fulham, are already on their third manager of the season after recently axing manager Claudio Ranieri.
You can expect the market to handle a lot of parlays with the combination of Man City/Chelsea/Man United, so sportsbooks will definitely be rooting for at least one to slip up.
Lopsided Public Wagers
It’s no surprise to see Chelsea and Manchester United as public betting darlings but Brighton aren’t often on the list, especially after losing consecutive EPL matches. A third consecutive defeat could even see the Seagulls pegged to the relegation zone.
In Week 28 I backed Brighton to pull off the upset at Leicester City based on their inflated odds, but this weekend I’m fading them at an overstated price of -120. Huddersfield can finally enter a match with confidence after a late win over Wolves, and I like the value at +420 to make it two in a row.
Market Breakdown and Value Plays
In the North London Derby on Saturday morning, betting has been balanced all around on Arsenal (+275), Tottenham (+105) and the draw (+270).
There’s been very little moneyline movement to report, but the -0.5/+0.5 spread has seen plenty of juice fluctuation.
Leicester City will play their first match under new manager Brendan Rodgers, who abruptly left Celtic at the top of Scotland’s Premiership.
The Foxes have received nearly half the wagers against Watford and have seen their odds dwindle from +225 to +195.
It’s certainly been a struggle picking moneylines this season but over/unders have fared well, including this system based on sizable home underdogs.
Sunday’s Merseyside Derby between Liverpool and Everton will have huge implications no matter what, but it also has the potential to be the most watchable.
Liverpool finally broke through for five goals against Watford in midweek action and will be looking to pounce on Everton from the get-go. With the total set at just 2.5 goals and juice at -110, there’s plenty of value on the over up to -130.
One other play worth making is the Burnley-Crystal Palace Draw (+230), as it fits a number of profitable betting systems, has an over/under trending toward 2 goals, and is the highly contrarian angle with just 11% of wagers so far.
- Arsenal +0.5 (-110) at Tottenham
- Burnley-Crystal Palace Draw (+230)
- Huddersfield (+420) at Brighton
- Liverpool-Everton Over 2.5 (-110)