LEICESTER’S comeback to beat Aston Villa 3-2 last week was thrilling to watch. Riyad Mahrez inspired the recovery from 2-0 down and the £500,000 signing looks the bargain buy of last season.
The Algerian’s been brilliant this term with six goals and two assists and a league high 22 dribbles (according to opta).
Leicester have continued where they ended under Nigel Pearson last season and sit second after an unbeaten start that’s brought three wins and two draws.
It’s said a trip to Stoke is never easy but Mark Hughes’s men are in the bottom three having lost both home matches 1-0. Leicester look worth a punt at 85-40 with McBookie – if their players like pizza!
Italian boss Claudio Ranieri’s side haven’t kept a clean sheet despite his promise of a meal if they do so.
Leicester are 16-5 at McBookie and BetVictor to win to nil today but I’ll stick with the straight victory – although not to lose also tempts at 6-10 with Coral.
Wing king Mahrez is 9-2 at Stan James to score again while England striker Jamie Vardy, another big threat, is 9-4.
Stoke aren’t far away and the longer they go out without a win the more pressure builds on Hughes.
The big game in the Premiership sees Chelsea tackle Arsenal and if they lose they’ll probably fall 14 points behind leaders West Ham.
Chelsea beat Maccabi easily enough in the Champions League but all is not well and they’re struggling all over the park.
Arsenal suffered a shock defeat away to Dinamo Zagreb – not helped by Olivier Giroud’s first-half red card – but sit comfortably in the top four.
It’s one of those days a draw will suit the Gunners better than their hosts and that’s my call at 5-2 with McBookie.
Man City are also coming off a Champions League defeat but it’s all been rosy in the Premier League with five wins out of five.
It should be a six in a row tonight when West Ham visit the Etihad but the bet I like best is both to score. The Hammers have won at Arsenal and Liverpool – netting two and three respectively – so must have a chance of at least hitting the target.
Both to score pays 20-21 at McBookie and BetVictor and Man City and both to score is 2-1 at Ladbrokes.
City are no bigger than 3-10 at Coral so if fit-again Sergio Aguero starts back him at 3-1 with William Hill to break the deadlock.
Every weekend I do a treble for the newsletter for those who subscribe. I don’t usually put the article on the site but due to the problems last night I haven’t had a chance to do anything else so this is a flavour of my English lower-league picks.
Let’s start with Plymouth whose boss Derek Adams made headlines last week when his side’s visit to Wycombe was delayed as the manager questioned if opposition players should be using GPS devices.
Adams has managed long enough in Scotland to know the system help keep tabs on stars off the pitch but didn’t realise clubs could use the technology during games.
The ex-Ross County gaffer had the last laugh though as his side won 2-1 to climb to second in the table. Plymouth now have four homes matches in five starting on Saturday with local rivals Bristol Rovers.
The Pirates have made a steady start to life back in League Two with three wins in seven but it’s a home success for me.
Next back a Bury side who have shaken up the opposition with three superb wins in the spin.
Accrington in the JP Trophy was expected but they followed up by seeing off much-fancied Walsall and saved the best of the lot with a 3-1 victory at Sheffield Utd last Saturday. To score three at Bramall Lane is impressive.
If the Shakers maintain that form they should beat a Port Vale side who have been hit and miss – losing two of their last three but beating Wigan during that spell.
I like over 2.5 goals at Colchester v Gillingham. Justin Edinburgh’s Gills have hit the target in all of their road trips and protect the only unbeaten side in League One.
Gillingham will expect to win but when you look at Colchester’s form the best must be over 2.5 goals. Colchester also netted three at Sheffield Utd in midweek in a 3-2 win and that followed a 3-3 draw at Chesterfield, 3-2 loss at Northampton, 2-2 draw at home to Scunthorpe and a 4-0 defeat to Fleetwood.
So their last five have gone over 3.5 goals and their previous home meeting with Gillingham was a 2-1 defeat. Edinburgh has only see two of his side’s previous six go over 2.5 goals so he could be in for a goals treat.
Leicester to win to nil
(16-5, McBookie, BetVictor)
Man City and btts
(2-1, William Hill)
Colchester v Gillingham over 3.5 goals
(2-1, William Hill)