Weekend Review: Premier League title race hots up while Dettori makes it six-in-a-row

Dramatic comebacks both north and south of the border made for a bookie-friendly weekend of footballing action
The post Weekend Review: Premier League title race hots up while Dettori makes it six-in-a-row first appeared on EGR Intel.  

The Premier League title race, the battle to qualify for Champions League football and the scramble to beat the drop all took interesting turns over the weekend. 

Manchester City (3/10) struck first in the Saturday lunchtime kick-off with a 4-2 victory away at Crystal Palace (9/1).

Things did not start well for the Citizens in South London, as Jean-Philippe Mateta stunned the visitors with a goal in the first five minutes. 

Talismanic midfielder Kevin De Bruyne levelled proceedings in the 13th minute with a scintillating strike, and City came out firing in the second half when Rico Lewis scored in the 47th minute. 

Erling Haaland grabbed his 19th Premier Leage goal of the season shortly after the hour mark before De Bruyne bagged his second of the day, while Odsonne Édouard pulled one back for Palace just before the end. 

FULL-TIME | A big away win!

2-4 #ManCity | @okx pic.twitter.com/VdeHbOstM4

— Manchester City (@ManCity) April 6, 2024

Attention then turned to the south coast as Arsenal (1/2) travelled to Brighton (5/1) for the evening kick-off. Gunners fans’ nerves were eased when the visitors were awarded a penalty in the 33rd minute, which Bukayo Saka confidently converted.

Kai Havertz added a second for Arsenal midway through the second half before former Brighton forward Leandro Trossard completed the scoring four minutes from the end.  

In the battle to escape the relegation zone, Everton (4/5) won the ‘six-pointer’ of the weekend at home to Burnley (7/2) thanks to Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s fortuitous strike in first-half stoppage time after Burnley keeper Arijanet Muric failed to clear his lines in time, cannoning his pass off the Englishman and into a gaping net.

Luton Town (11/4) came back to beat Bournemouth (9/10) 2-1 at the Kenilworth Road, while a spirited Brentford (9/2) side had to settle for a point in an enthralling 3-3 draw with Aston Villa (13/20), which incidentally dented the Villains’ Champions League hopes. There were also narrow victories for West Ham United (29/20) and Newcastle United (7/4) on Saturday. 

Betway’s Chad Yeomans noted that the Saturday results were more punter-friendly than the overall picture. He said: “It was a mixed bag for us on Saturday as City got the favourite backers off to a flying start as they cruised past Crystal Palace in the early kick-off.

“Victories for Everton, Newcastle and Arsenal brought further joy to punters, but a thrilling draw between Aston Villa and Brentford and a Luton victory over Bournemouth restored some of the damage to the book.”

The headline fixture on Sunday was the crunch match at Old Trafford between Liverpool (3/5) and Manchester United (7/2). 

Liverpool took the lead through a Luis Diaz scissor kick midway through the first half. Bruno Fernandes then pounced on a defensive error to score an audacious effort from nearly the halfway line early in the second half. 

Teenage sensation Kobbie Mainoo then sent Old Trafford into raptures with a stunning finish, yet Liverpool made it 2-2 when Harvey Elliot was brought down in the box by Aaron Wan-Bissaka, with Mo Salah cooly converting the resulting spot-kick.

Meanwhile, Tottenham (2/5) pounced on Villa dropping points to leapfrog the Midlands side in the table thanks to a 3-1 win at home to Nottingham Forest (6/1), with the pick of the goals coming from Micky Van de Ven. The result doesn’t help Forest’s survival chances, as the Reds now sit outside the relegation spots on goal difference from Luton. 

What a goal that is from Micky van de Ven pic.twitter.com/3tXoGDceHi

— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) April 7, 2024

Chelsea (2/5) also let another lead slip, as the Blues conceded a 93rd-minute equaliser away at Sheffield United (5/1) to please bookies.

On the drama at Old Trafford, Betfred’s Alan Firkins said: “A sensational week of Premier League action was capped off beautifully on Sunday afternoon as Manchester United held Liverpool to a breathless 2-2 draw at Old Trafford.

“Despite registering 28 shots against United’s nine and the small matter of 62% possession, Liverpool couldn’t put their bitter rivals to the sword and indeed only salvaged a point courtesy of a late Mo Salah penalty.” 

Firkins also gave an update on the latest odds for the Premier League title. He added: “We go 6/4 City, 7/4 Arsenal and 9/4 Liverpool. That all three are odds-against tells you how delicately balanced and unpredictable it all remains, with just seven matches to go. 

Kindred Group’s Ali Gill noted how the weekend’s results overall pleased the layers: “A weekend for the layers in the Premier League as results overall went our way,” he said.  

“No surprise United versus Liverpool topped the charts as comfortably our best result in the book over the weekend, while Sheffied United’s late equaliser against Chelsea left us far happier than poor Mauricio [Pochettino]. Arsenal’s routine 3-0 win over Brighton was one that went to the punters, but other than that, very little went their way.”

There was also drama north of the border as Celtic (9/5) blew a lead at bitter rivals Rangers (13/10), leaving the pair separated by a single point at the top of the standings. 

Firkins added: “Welcome drama from north of the border too as Rangers and Celtic shared six goals in another white-knuckle ride and remain separated by just a point themselves at the top of the Scottish Premier League – though chasers Rangers have a game in hand.”

On the continent, Bayer Leverkusen (3/5) are just one victory away from the Bundesliga title as Xabi Alonso’s side edged Union Berlin (9/2) 1-0 thanks to a first-half stoppage time penalty from Florian Wirtz. Bayern Munich (2/5) threw away a two-goal lead away at Heidenheim (6/1). 

In Spain, the Atheltic Bilbao (3/4) won the Copa del Rey on penalties against Mallorca (9/2), while PSG (3/10) slipped up at home to bottom-of-the-table Clermont Foot (8/1).


Copa no.2⃣5⃣ is coming home, family

Forty years later, Athletic Club lift a major trophy again.#UniqueInTheWorld #AthleticRCDMallorca pic.twitter.com/vs9JhWQZMS

— Athletic Club (@Athletic_en) April 6, 2024

Francisco Cano, head of trading at LiveScore Group, commented: “The best result over the weekend came from PSG drawing 1-1 at home versus Clermont and from the Copa del Rey final, which also ended with a 1-1 draw before being decided by penalties.”

In horseracing action, evergreen jockey Frankie Dettori grabbed the headlines after the 53-year-old won six races at Santa Anita in California. The cumulative odds at bet365 for all six winners was 90,088/1. 

Dettori had 11 rides in all, and after failing to win his first race, the Italian went on to win six in a row before finishing second in the Grade One Santa Anita Derby. 

His biggest-priced winner came in the Grade Two Santa Anita Oaks aboard 10/1 Nothing Like You.

Bet365’s Steve Freeth commented: ”Let’s talk about Frankie Dettori. His 90,088/1 six timer at Santa Anita on Saturday had the liabilities running into seven figures. The majority of the damage was done in cash-outs, with punters saying enough is enough before the aptly named Getthemoney went to post for race nine after he’d ridden the six previous winners.”

Bet365’s Pat Cooney added: “Not a bad effort from a jockey who said he was retiring a year ago […] his shortest-price ride on the card was the even-money favourite, Imagination, in the high-profile Santa Anita Derby, and we were relieved to see him beaten.

“Many customers successfully used our cash-out option throughout the evening – notably one customer who cashed out just before the defeat of Getthemoney in race eight and won £22,858.”

The Grand National meeting at Aintree starts on Thursday, with the big one – the Grand National – taking place on Saturday as favourite Corach Rambler looks to make it back-to-back victories in the world’s most-famous steeplechase.

The post Weekend Review: Premier League title race hots up while Dettori makes it six-in-a-row first appeared on EGR Intel.


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