Local betting expert Joe Whitaker casts his eye the sporting action with the Premier League back this weekend, PNE facing Wigan, and with racing at Haydock Park.
What a great feeling it is to have the full spread of football fixtures back again this weekend.
PNE’s first Championship home game of the season at Deepdale sees a derby with Wigan coming to town.
Latics looked up for it last weekend when they beat Cardiff at home. Alex Neil looks like he is determined to make it work with one up front and is likely to go again with Sean Maguire on his own, supported by an attacking midfield.
Time will tell just how well this works with no Callum Robinson to call upon, though there are a few in the squad with a point to prove and the new arrivals should freshen things up.
I fancy a score draw here, which can be backed at 3/1.
Premier League clubs across the land will be itching to get off to a good start and it is tricky for punters to back any team with much conviction. That said however, with a little bit of homework you could find yourselves getting some much needed value.
Everton have looked like a club with a plan this summer and have done some shrewd business. They travel to Crystal Palace at a time when the Eagles are looking more of a selling club than anything. At 6/4 for the win I fancy The Toffees to get off to a good start this season.
Bournemouth under Eddie Howe have continued the policy of signing young talent and I can see them giving the league new boys Sheffield United a harsh welcome to the top flight. Chris Wilder has done a great job though at first impression their signings do look like they already have one eye on going down stronger than they came up.
That’s not to say they can’t have a good go this season, though I think the 11/10 for Bournemouth this weekend is worth having on your slip.
Another home banker for the day in my book is Watford at Even money to beat Brighton at Vicarage Road. The Hornets looked strong at times last season and although he didn’t set the world alight at Arsenal, Danny Welbeck could be a great addition. The treble will return slightly better than 10/1 and could provide some decent first returns of the season.
The match of the weekend sees Chelsea head straight into a big one at Old Trafford on Sunday, in what will be a decent test for both young managers. The bookies have clearly been impressed by the signing of Harry Maguire and make United a 6/5 shot to win their opening game.
As good a defender as Maguire is, I still don’t see him as the missing piece to make everything okay again there. Chelsea will look to frustrate all afternoon and I can see a draw at 5/2 very easily happening.
The Rose of Lancaster Stakes at Haydock sees soft ground specialist Addeybb look to get back to winning ways. It’s bound to be a short price though he should find conditions perfect.