A near-full programme of Premier League fixtures arrives this weekend and one of the more intriguing clashes comes at Carrow Road as Norwich City entertain Everton.
On paper, it looks like an almost certain away win. Chris Hughton’s men have gone nine league games without winning, while Everton are pushing the likes of Tottenham and Arsenal for a Champions League spot.
The Toffees are having a tremendous season and have only lost four of their 26 top-flight matches so far.
Boss David Moyes stated last week that he would look at his situation at the end of the season and hinted that his future would depend on the success of his Everton side come May.
Such declarations about his future could be serious, or they could be an ingenious ploy to get his players to put that little bit more effort in as they chase down a top-four place in the Premier League.
Norwich have not won in the league since a 2-1 home triumph over Wigan in mid-December and are slowly being sucked towards a potential relegation fight.
The Canaries have failed to win in six home games since that success against the Latics, including a humiliation at the hands of non-league Luton Town in the FA Cup.
With the likes of Marouane Fellaini, Leighton Baines and Victor Anichebe in form, and Norwich in such a bad way, Everton are comfortable favourites and can be backed at 21/20 to take all three points from Norfolk.
Norwich’s bad run included a 5-0 hammering at the hands of Liverpool, but that seems to have awoken something in Hughton’s men as they have not lost a game since, earning draws against Tottenham, QPR and Fulham.
It must be said that, overall, the East Anglian outfit have been fairly solid at home this season, losing only three of 13 games, winning five, including victories over Manchester United and Arsenal.
Their recent draw against Spurs showed that they can still raise their game when the stronger teams visit and Norwich will be confident they can take advantage of an Everton side who may still be smarting after they were denied victory late on at Oldham Athletic last weekend.
If you believe that Hughton can guide his team past the Toffees, then you can back them at bwin’s price of 13/5 to win.
However, as you may have guessed from the opening to this article, I cannot look past the draw, and here’s why.
Everton have drawn almost half of their 26 league games this season (12), including three of their last six, and of course, they were held to a stalemate at Boundary Park in the FA Cup last time out.
These two sides have shared the spoils in each of their last three meetings, including the reverse fixture at Goodison Park in November as a late Sebastian Bassong goal cancelled out Steven Naismith’s opener.
Norwich have also drawn more than they’ve won and lost this season in the Premier League, with 11 of their 26 outings ending all square.
Hughton’s charges have drawn four of their last six, and more notably, all of their last three home games.
These overwhelming statistics lead me to believe the stalemate is the value call at Carrow Road, especially with tempting odds of 23/10.
If you agree, then why not back it with the free £20 bet you get for opening a bwin account today? You might just win yourself a neat and tidy £66.
Follow David on Twitter @whichdave