The final Saturday before Christmas is always an exciting time in the football calendar and we’re hopeful that it’ll be a profitable period on the betting front too with a weekend treble on the straight win coupon.
We’re backing three home sides to give their respective fans something to smile about. If they can land us over £85 profit from a £10 stake, it’ll be a very merry Christmas for us too.
West Ham United V Newcastle United
After a poor start to life at the London Stadium, David Moyes has sparked a huge improvement from West Ham compared to how they were playing under Slaven Bilic and the Hammers appear to be on the right road to recovery in their bid for Premier League survival. A win against Newcastle would see them enter Christmas with a far more positive feeling.
The Hammers picked up four points in home games against Chelsea and Arsenal before registering a big win against struggling Stoke last weekend. Even with Manuel Lanzini suspended, they’ll certainly fancy their hopes of keeping the run going against the out-of-form Magpies in spite of Tuesday’s Carabao Cup loss at Arsenal.
Rafa Benitez has done a good job at St James’ Park, but a lack of quality has been evident in the last few weeks. The visitors have registered just one point from their last nine league games while shortcomings at both ends of the pitch have been visible.
Momentum is with the hosts right now while the atmosphere in Stratford has improved significantly too. Back the Hammers to enter Christmas with a smile.
Sunderland V Birmingham City
After finally grabbing their first home win of 2017 against Fulham last weekend, Sunderland fans will be hoping that victories will be like buses by seeing a second come along on Saturday. While the Black Cats still have huge room for improvement, the visit of rock bottom Birmingham should leave them feeling confident.
The win over Fulham isn’t the only sign of improvement since the arrival of Chris Coleman, either. A win at Burton and a draw against the leaders Wolves are all good signs while their ability to score goals through the likes of Lewis Grabban should inspire confidence too, not least against such poor opposition.
For the Blues, a truly dreadful season shows little sign of improvement. It’s four defeats in five overall while the visitors still see their first win on the road. The Stadium of Light may have seemed a likely destination a few weeks back. Now, though, another defeat looks to be the likely outcome.
Sunderland are far from security, but they are at least on the right track. Expect that to continue here.
Colchester United V Port Vale
In League Two, John McGreal’s Colchester are currently outside of the play-offs due to goal difference alone and know that a win over Port Vale on Saturday would give them a great chance of entering Christmas Day inside the top seven. Given their current form, there’s every chance that they will.
The Eagles have won three of their last four league games while they’ve picked up 10 points from the last possible 12 at the Weston Homes Community Stadium. The goals of Mikael Mandron and Samuel Szmodics should give them a great chance too, not least after finding the net three times in each of their last two matches.
Port Vale are in good form too, winning three of their last five league games, but have still lost more than they’ve won on the road. With a little breathing space between themselves and the drop zone, a loss here wouldn’t be the worst result as long as Neil Aspin’s men can pick up points elsewhere over this busy period. While they’d still love to win, the bigger incentive is with Colchester.
It’s not an easy challenge for the hosts, but they can come through it with three points.