Welcome to Shay Says, the latest football betting blog from LeoVegas’ new Irish ambassador, Shay Given.
This week, the Republic of Ireland and Premier League legend previews three key games from the Premier League this weekend.
We’ve also got his opinion on Liverpool’s top four hopes as the business end of the season approaches.
Let’s see what Shay Says!
I think Manchester City will have too much for Newcastle here.
We’re coming into the home straight shortly and I think City will have to go on a real run if they are to catch Arsenal, they can’t afford to slip up anymore. The result against Nottingham Forest last time out was two points dropped.
I think they’ll be too strong for Newcastle, especially at the Etihad, so I fancy them quite strongly.
Newcastle gave a good account of themselves against Manchester United in the Carabao Cup final on Sunday, but ultimately United were too good for them on the day.
I’m going to go with 2-1 to City, with Erling Haaland as an anytime goalscorer.
I also fancy Alexander Isak to score for Newcastle – I like him a lot and hope he starts.
SHAY SAYS: MANCHESTER CITY 2-1 NEWCASTLE
Chelsea are going to have to start winning games at some stage – Graham Potter is under severe pressure at the minute.
I like Potter as a manager but he knows the pressure is mounting; he really needs a good result this weekend to give them some momentum.
Leeds are only just above the relegation zone so they’ll be fighting for points too, I thought it was an improved performance against Southampton last weekend.
For Chelsea, this is another home game against a side battling relegation, like when they lost to Southampton a couple of weeks ago, but I doubt they’ll do the same again.
I think Chelsea will sneak it – I’m going to go with them to win 2-0 and Mykhailo Mudryk to score anytime.
SHAY SAYS: CHELSEA 2-0 LEEDS
What a game this is! Liverpool are struggling for consistency at the minute, whereas Manchester United are on a real high.
I’ve been really impressed with Erik ten Hag. Obviously he had a slow start, but he’s managed to sort a lot of things out and made big decisions on big players – Cristiano Ronaldo being the obvious one.
He’s really stamped his authority on this United side. The patterns of play we’re seeing are very Ajax-like, and there’s a real togetherness in the squad.
Time will tell if they can challenge for the Premier League in the next few years. People will say they’re challenging this year – but I think it might be too early this season.
Liverpool, on the other hand, are just struggling to find any sort of rhythm. They managed to beat Wolves in midweek, but they’ve also picked up some really poor results recently, especially against Real Madrid.
I’m going to go for a 2-2 draw here – it’s a big game with a lot of history and I think there will be lots of goals.
Alejandro Garnacho could be a shout score anytime for United – he looks a real livewire whether he’s starting or coming off the bench, and I also back the reliable Mohamed Salah to net for Liverpool.
SHAY SAYS: LIVERPOOL 2-2 MANCHESTER UNITED
Liverpool very much have an outside chance of finishing in the top four.
They can definitely finish in the top six, and I reckon they’ll go on some sort of charge between now and the end of the season and finish with European football next year.
To secure top four is, however, a big ask – it depends whether they can get it together in time.
When they beat Everton and Newcastle you thought they’d turned a corner, but then they slipped up again by losing heavily to Real Madrid and drawing to Crystal Palace. Their inconsistency continued with a more positive result against Wolves, but they need to show more to reach the top four.
I think Jurgen Klopp wanted reinforcements in January, but they obviously didn’t arrive.
They need a serious run to finish in the top four – like ten games unbeaten or something ridiculous – and hope teams around them also slip up.
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*all odds correct at the time of writing and are subject to change