Last weekend’s Playing Away was a bit of a mixed bag with a win for Everton, a draw for Sunderland and a thumping defeat for Aston Villa, but this week in a tough fixture list Newcastle United, Liverpool and West Ham United look good to pick up wins at Reading, Norwich City and Queens Park Rangers respectively.
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Newcastle United to beat Reading @ 27/20
The Royals may have picked up a win over Premier League opposition in midweek but Queens Park Rangers in the Capital One Cup is not the same as facing Newcastle United and I think Reading could be on the end of another home defeat.
Brian McDermott’s side have had a difficult start to their top-flight return and currently sit bottom after three losses and a draw in their four league fixtures. Even that stalemate, at home to Stoke, was achieved with a last-minute penalty and Reading are finding the adjustment to the big league tough.
Newcastle have not hit the heights of last season – not by any stretch – but they only have one point less than Arsenal and there are signs they are creeping back into form: the Magpies were unbeaten in five matches prior to their much-changed team going down to Manchester United in the League Cup. The return of Fabricio Coloccini and Cheick Tiote from injury is a massive plus and any type of solid performance should be enough for the Toon to take the points.
Liverpool to beat Norwich @ 3/4
Okay, so Liverpool are yet to win in the Premier League this season and a quote of odds-on about the Reds when they are away from home is hardly the best price you are going to see all weekend, but I fancy a trip to Carrow Road to face Norwich could bring about a first league victory for Brendan Rodgers.
Liverpool have been playing better than a return of two points from five game suggests and after a morale-boosting win over West Brom in the Capital One Cup, the Merseysiders can pick up another away-day victory.
A lack of goals is still an issue for Liverpool, but in the Canaries they are playing a side even more shot-shy than themselves. Chris Hughton’s side have scored just two goals in five games to remain winless and are in for a season of struggle. Liverpool can get their campaign up and running by putting Norwich into further danger.
West Ham to beat QPR @ 11/4
Mark Hughes has found life difficult this season at QPR and West Ham look a bit too big at 11/4 to pile more pressure on the former Blackburn boss.
Rangers’ form at Loftus Road was the only reason they survived relegation last season, but this year QPR’s troubles on the road have been matched by those at home. One point and no goals is the Hoops’ miserable record at home so far this term and with just two points from five games, Hughes needs a win and fast.
But West Ham are just the sort of side who can make it an uncomfortable Monday night for the hosts. Sam Allardyce’s team is set up to play away from home and their results on the road in the Championship were excellent: 13 wins, just four losses, ten clean sheets and 45 points gave the Irons the best record in the division and even if their two away games back in the big league have been disappointing (West Ham are also yet to score and have picked up just a single point), all the pressure is on QPR.
Big Sam can set up to play on the break and will fancy his chances from set-pieces against a team who have already let in 14 goals in league and cup this season. I wouldn’t suggest putting your mortgage on it, but the 11/4 about the Hammers is a tad too long and therefore worthy of a small investment.
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