The first game of the weekend was a bewildered Crystal Palace side taking on an exhausted Arsenal. The manager-less Crystal Palace, sitting second from bottom before the match, were placed at 9/1 to overcome 1st placed Arsenal. No such luck occurred as Crystal Palace lost 2-0 to 10-man Arsenal.
The 3 o’clock kick off saw Aston Villa take on a strong Everton side. Everton were placed as favourites, even though they were the visitors, at 13/10. The game finished 2-0 to Everton.
The other kick offs included Liverpool against West Brom. Liverpool so far this season have grabbed 20 points from a possible 27. Only Arsenal have fared better, so it was understandable for the bookmakers to place Liverpool to win at 4/9, with a West Brom upset placed at 7/1. No upsets were forthcoming as Liverpool stormed to a 4-1 victory with strikes coming from the formidable pairing of Sturridge and Suarez.
A poorly performing Manchester United faced an even worse Stoke City side. Stoke were 11/1 to take all 3 points, which, throughout the game looked as if it could happen. Stoke took the lead twice only to have United to spoil the parade with 2 goals in as many minutes to claim all 3 points.
Norwich and Cardiff brought the first draw of the weekend with a dull 0-0, but, with no outstanding favourite for the game, a draw didn’t seem like a bad bet at 12/5.
Sunday began with a fierce rivalry between Sunderland and Newcastle. Sunderland had conceded, on average, 2.33 goals per game since the start of the season and only scoring 0.78 per game, which is why even poor performing Newcastle were ranked as favourites at 8/5 for this encounter despite being away from home. Sunderland provided the shock of the weekend with a late strike to seal their first win of the campaign.
Next saw Chelsea take on Manchester City. The two teams who are favourites for the title met for the first time this season. Chelsea, performing very well, Manchester City, not performing great away from home. Chelsea were placed at 11/8 to further push towards the title. A last minute winner from an unlikely source guaranteed second spot for Chelsea as Manchester City lose out on a top four place.
Swansea and West Ham provided the second draw of the weekend with yet another bore draw. Again, there was nothing to separate the teams, neither were really considered favourites so a neutral would have most likely gone for a draw at a mere 29/10.
Every outstanding favourite won this weekend. Most of them won in the last few minutes of the game. United managed to pull two back to seal a vital victory, Tottenham managed an undeserved victory against a hard pushing Hull City, Chelsea capitalised on a huge mistake from the Manchester City defence and a poor performance from Arsenal still merited them with a win. The two draws aren’t significant enough to earn a flicker of a smile from the bookmaker and the Sunderland win, although their first, was on a derby day where anything can happen, and the bets will have reflected this.