Premiership team news
A look ahead to the weekend matches
Arsenal v WBA
Arsène Wenger has seen his side beaten twice in the last week and suffer another torrent of criticism from pundits and supporters alike. West Brom have also lost their last two games, but the mood is very different within Steve Clarke’ side who have surprised everybody by maintaining top-six pace into December.
Odds Arsenal 9-20 W Brom 11-2 Draw 100-30
West Ham v Liverpool
Liverpool arrive in east London shorn of the suspended Luis Suárez so it will be up to Jonjo Shelvey, a boyhood Hammer, to lead the visitors attack, a role he impressively carried out during Liverpools recent Europa League draw with Young Boys. West Ham away is a sterner test, though, although they are missing a key forward in Andy Carroll.
Odds West Ham 9-5 Liverpool 29-20 Draw 9-4
Everton v Spurs
It will be the battle of the Belgians tomorrow. Marouane Fellaini has been a key player for Everton while Kevin Mirallas, back from injury, could also provide the hosts with some added fire-power. Tottenham, meanwhile, are likely to have Jan Vertonghen in defence and Mousa Dembélé in their startling line-up.
Odds Everton Evens Tottenham 13-5 Draw 12-5
Wigan v QPR
Still without a win this season and currently eight points adrift from safety, Queens Park Rangers can ill afford to come away from the DW Stadium without a win., two draws against Sunderland and Aston Villa is not enough. Wigan are another team in relegation trouble, with Roberto Martínezs side having only taken three points from their last five games.
Odds Wigan 13-10 QPR 2-1 Draw 23-10
Swansea v Norwich
Michael Laudrup’s Swansea are in the midst of a six-game unbeaten run which has seen them climb to seventh, and in Michu they have a genuine goal threat. Norwich are also in the midst of a long unbeaten run and Chris Hughton will feel his side have the organisational strength to keep the Swans at bay.
Odds Swansea 4-5 Norwich 100-30 Draw 5-2
Aston Villa v Stoke
Having only lost to the two Manchester clubs in their previous seven games, Paul Lamberts youthful Aston Villa side are beginning to grow in confidence. But Villa now face an in-form Stoke side, who are looking to win back-to-back away games. Peter Crouch could make a return for the visitors while Ron Vlaar could miss out.
Odds Aston Villa 7-5 Stoke 19-10 Draw 11-5
Fulham v Newcastle
Fulham have found goals hard to come by of late and with the news that Bryan Ruiz will be out until the new year, Jol is relying heavily on Dimitar Berbatov and Mladen Petric to score for them. Newcastle, despite a 3-0 win over Wigan on Monday, travel to Craven Cottage still looking for their first away win this season.
Odds Fulham 10-11 Newcastle 14-5 Draw 5-2
Manchester C v Manchester U
The 163rd Manchester derby provides a selection poser for Alex Ferguson as he decides who to deploy in midfield and how to shape the side. The choice comes down to a 4-2-3-1 with Michael Carrick and Darren Fletcher/Paul Scholes as the holding midfielders, or a diamond formation with Wayne Rooney at the tip.
Odds Man City 6-5 Man Utd 21-10 Draw 12-5
Sunderland v Chelsea
Two anxious managers should contribute to an edgy atmosphere at the Stadium of Light, where Sunderland have won only one Premier League game since March. Rafael Benítez will be anxious to pacify Chelsea supporters with a win before flying to Japan for the World Club Championship from Newcastle airport this evening.
Odds Sunderland 18-5 Chelsea 8-11 Draw 13-5
Southampton v Reading
Southampton come into this game in better form than Reading, who pipped the Saints to the Championship title by one point, but defensively both teams have been porous this season, with only two clean sheets kept between them. The hosts are better in attack, however, and are able to call upon Gaston Ramirez again.
Odds South’ton 19-20 Reading 27-10 Draw 5-2