TV Guide - Game19: Arsenal v Liverpool & Burnley v Tottenham

Friday, December 22 2017


As philosopher Noddy Holder once said, it’s CHRIIIIIIIISTMAAAS. And it’s at this time of year I think I know what he meant. 

Our stockings are stuffed with fixtures over the next week or so and we’ll be covering them all right here, so don’t touch that dial. 

Starting with a festive goal-fest at the Emirates…

Arsenal v Liverpool. 7.45pm Friday on Sky Sports.

I’ll give you Even Money the phrase ‘Christmas Cracker’ gets aired within 20 seconds of Sky’s coverage.

But it is the pick of the Christmas weekend fixtures, to be fair. There are usually goals when these two meet – an average of more than four per match in the last seven, in fact. And that includes a rogue 0-0 draw.

Liverpool have won the last three and take the more convincing form into the match. 19 goals in the last five on the road tells you how they will go about winning it and Arsenal can only play one way, despite three clean sheets on the spin.

Plus, with City away and clear and Man United and Chelsea threatening to breakaway, both teams need three points from this. So with goals a given, I propose playing like this:

Tap In

· Both Teams to Score at 4/9

Too short for a single, but looks the bet of the weekend.

Smart Bets

  • Draw & Both Teams to Score at 16/5

Could go either way, but have a feeling both will have to settle for the draw neither wants. And this looks the best way to cash in.

Long Shots

  • HT/ FT is at 5/1
  • Both Teams to Score: YES, Over 10.5 Corners & Over 35.5 Booking Points at 11/2 (via Coral’s #YourCall)

Two value calls worth a punt at sensible stakes. Neither teams attract many bookings – and the Under 35.5 option is on offer at 7/2 – but I’m going over based on price and intensity.

And then on Saturday teatime...

Burnley v Tottenham. 5.30pm on BT Sport. 

Burnley are currently a point ahead of Spurs and in superior form – with four wins from five at home, including four clean sheets. The one blip being the last minute mugging at the hands of Arsenal. 

Tottenham meanwhile have stuttered and stumbled to just a single point from their last five on the road. Which was hard on Watford, in truth. 

And yet the bookies make Spurs 1/2 favourites to win the match. This HAS to be taken on, Badmen. Tell your Bad friends.

You’ll get the same 1/2 odds backing Burnley with a two-goal headstart. And that’s just the start.

The suspended James Tarkowski will be a miss for Burnley – and I suspect Dyche Dyche Baby would be more than happy with a share of the points. But this kind of value has to be snapped up…

Tap In

  • Burnley (+2) Match Handicap at 1/2

Short, but it looks like buying money from here. 

Smart Bets

  • Double Chance: Burnley & the Draw at 29/20
  • Draw/ Draw in the HT/FT at 9/2

The first is inexplicable value and must be backed. The Draw/ Draw has paid out in five of Burnley’s six draws this season, including at Spurs.

Long Shots

  • Burnley Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 7/1
  • Burnley Win, Under 10.5 Corners & Under 35.5 Booking Points at 14/1

Burnley are well capable of spoiling Spurs’ Christmas. And making ours. Get on.

I’ll be back up your grill on Sunday - balls deep in Boxing Day. 

Happy multi denominational holidays. Yeah?

Matt Nesbitt

Ben Dinnery

Ben Dinnery


Ben is football’s leading injury specialist. The ‘go-to’ guru for big hitters like Sky Sports, ESPN and NBC Sports when they need data. Or the BBC, talkSPORT and the broadsheets when a quote is required. His unique insight has helped provide a better understanding of what is really happening in the treatment rooms.

Johnny Wilson

Johnny Wilson


Johnny is a respected physiotherapist and sports scientist, specialising in football injuries and rehab. Johnny has headed up the medical departments at Chesterfield, Scunthorpe and Notts County. Overseeing everything from player-specific training loads to pre-signing medicals. He has a proven record working with elite athletes in Private Practice and is regularly called upon throughout Europe to deliver presentations on the latest rehab innovations.

Matt Nesbitt

Matt Nesbitt On TipTV


Matt's short, unremarkable football career was ended by his own bad driving. His long, distinguished career as a football tipster was ended by his own good advice. Because bookmakers don’t like a winner. First, they closed his accounts. Then his members’ accounts. Then his tipping service. And now they employ him as a consultant. Funny old game.


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