Sam Hendry with his pick of the weekend’s Saturday football bets
Manchester City continue their relentless march to Premier League glory in the evening kick-off when they host Leicester City.
Much to both team’s disgruntlement, neither will be able to call on the services of Riyad Mahrez, who has at least now returned to training after a sulk over being denied a January move to the Etihad.
City’s style of play, while dazzling going forward, has left them vulnerable in defence to quick counter-attacks this season
That will suit Leicester, for whom Jamie Vardy will be aiming to exploit the space in behind City’s backline in the same way Jacob Murphy did for Newcastle at the Etihad a couple of weeks ago.
City, though, were still comfortable winners of that game and should have enough firepower to win here, particularly if Raheem Sterling can find his shooting boots again after last week’s howler against Burnley.
Man City to win and both teams to score is the selection here. It’s a scenario that has occurred seven times at the Etihad in the league this season and I’m backing this to be the eighth.
Mo Salah looks a decent bet to continue his astonishing season by finding the net again when Liverpool go up against Southampton on Sunday.
You can never be sure which Liverpool will turn up; their performances fluctuate week-to-week and sometimes within individual games such as last week when they dominated Spurs in the first half before dropping off significantly in the second.
One constant that has remained, though, has been Salah’s goals.
The Egyptian is a winger, conventionally speaking, yet has 28 of them already and is set to duke it out with Kevin De Bruyne for player of the year awards at the end of the season.
Salah to score anytime is an attractive proposition.
The most in and out-of-form teams in the division meet at the John Smith’s stadium on Sunday when David Wagner’s struggling Huddersfield take on a flying Bournemouth.
The Terriers have lost their last five league games, scoring just once and conceding fourteen in the process to drop into the relegation zone and are now favourites for relegation.
Bournemouth, on the other hand, are on a superb run picking up fourteen points from their last six matches, three more than Man City over the same time frame.
Before that, Bournemouth were in a similar situation to Huddersfield find themselves in now, which can give heart to the other strugglers with the knowledge that in such an open relegation fight, a month’s worth of good results could be enough to stay up.
But if such a run is to come for Huddersfield, I don’t think it will start here and, having won the reverse fixture 4-0, I’m backing Bournemouth to complete a league double over their opponents.