Top Two Meet In Crunch Clash

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There plenty of Premier League action to look forward to on Saturday including a top-of-the-table clash between Manchester City and Chelsea.

Pep Guardiola and Thomas Tuchel go head to head once again.

There are five intriguing contests at the top and bottom of the Premier League on Saturday, headlined by Manchester City against Chelsea.

Relegation rivals Newcastle and Watford meet in a crunch clash, while in the evening match-up Aston Villa host Manchester United.

Villa Can Claim Swift Revenge

Villa were beaten 1-0 by United in the FA Cup at Old Trafford on Monday but can claim swift revenge in the Premier League having been the better side for most of the tie.

Controversial VAR calls and wayward finishing cost Villa in the cup but they can take great heart from the performance with Ollie Watkins and Danny Ings causing many problems.

The arrival of Philippe Coutinho and Lucas Digne should perk up the Villa faithful and Steven Gerrard’s men will fancy their chances of facing a United team minus suspended pair Luke Shaw and Scott McTominay.

It could be argued McTominay has been one of United’s most consistent performers and his absence from midfield could be a bigger blow than Villa being with his international teammate John McGinn.

Only once in Ralf Rangnick’s seven matches in charge have United scored more than once in a game and they have put in some shocking performances, the worst of which was a 1-0 home loss to Wolves.

Villa at 37/20 can cause a minor upset in front of their own supporters.

City Might Not Extend Winning Run

The big game of the day comes at the Etihad in a repeat of last season’s Champions League final as runaway Premier League leaders host a Chelsea team looking to cut into their ten point lead.

Thomas Tuchel’s team have done better than most when it comes to facing City, beating them in last season’s Champions League final and FA Cup semi-final, albeit that Pep Guardiola’s outfit grabbed a bit of revenge earlier in the campaign with a 1-0 win at Stamford Bridge.

City look unstoppable and have won 11 league games in a row but not all of their performances were perfect. They were extremely fortunate to overcome Arsenal’s 10 men and Leicester scored three against them which should give Chelsea hope of at least avoiding defeat.

Chelsea have suffered only two league defeats this term and were good enough to beat Tottenham home and away without breaking sweat in the Carabao Cup semi-finals, while Tuchel’s team were well worth a point in the 2-2 draw with Liverpool.

It’s a tricky game to call but taking the tie or Chelsea at 6/5 on the double chance appeals more than backing City at 5/7 in a heavyweight clash between two of Europe’s finest.

Go For Goals At Newcastle

Norwich, who have not scored a league goal since November, are 27/10 to beat 1/1 Everton and Wolves are 5/4 favourites to shoot down Southampton, but neither game makes much betting appeal.

Instead head north to Tyneside and go for goals when Newcastle host Watford in a proper relegation six-pointer.

Watford have lost six on the spin and have not kept a Premier League clean sheet this season, but Claudio Ranieri’s side carry a decent enough goal threat which has led to some crazy away scores this term, losing 4-2 at Leicester and beating Everton 5-2.

Newcastle’s sole clean sheet came against powder-puff Burnley and yet the Magpies do score goals.

Only City and Chelsea have stopped them from notching in the Premier League at home and the arrival of Chris Wood this week gives them a fair enough replacement for the injured Callum Wilson.

*All odds correct at time of writing

Mark is the Racing Post’s football betting expert and he is also a regular pundit on talkSPORT and the Guardian’s Football Weekly.
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