Chelsea have been playing two games a week since the start of the season due to their involvement in several special competitions like the FIFA Club World Cup. In fact, this has been the same case since the manager Rafa Benitez took in charge of the club a few months ago.

The club recently progressed to the quarter-finals of the Europa league after beating the Romanian club Steau Bucharest 3-2 on aggregate. They will be facing the Russian club Rubin Kazan in the quarter-finals of the competition, but there have been concerns about the fixture pileup for the 2012 European champions.

The manager Rafa Benitez, though, has dismissed such claims by saying that he has seen real hunger and belief within the team that makes them play in every competition without worrying about tiredness. Benitez has pointed to the fact that he has been regularly preparing for up to 9 matches per month since his arrival at the club. The midfielder Eden Hazard, meanwhile, has spoken in confidence about the ability of the team to get past the Russian club. The Belgian arrived at the club in the summer for around £ 32 million and he has been one of the star players for the team.

“Since I came here we have been playing around nine games each month and we knew that could be difficult and we know that can still be difficult. I prefer to have this problem because it means we are carrying on competing. A top side always wants to be in all the competitions until the end,” said Benitez on the official website of the club. Chelsea have also progressed into the quarter-finals of the FA Cup as well. Due to the fact that they are fourth in the league, the FA Cup and the Europa league represent the trophy chances for the club this season.


Manchester United will take on West Ham United in a FA Cup clash at Old Trafford on Wednesday. These two teams had faced each other on 5th of January as well. That match was played at the Boleyn Ground and had ended in a draw. At one point of time, the Hammers seemed to be running away with that game, but, Robin Van Persie’s goal in the stoppage time saved United from a humiliating defeat.

If we compare the performance of both the teams in the last five matches, Manchester United is clearly ahead. The Red Devils have won four out of their last five matches, while, the remaining one match has ended in the form of a draw. In their last match, the Red Devils defeated the arch rivals Liverpool by 2-1.

On the other hand, The Hammers haven’t performed that well in their last five matches. They have managed to win only of them. They have been defeated in three matches, while, in the remaining one match, they shared points. In their last match, the Hammers were beaten by Sunderland by 3-0.

The last match between these two teams was played on the home ground of West Ham United, while, the upcoming game is going to be played on Manchester United’s home ground. The performance of the Red Devils on the home soil has been superb in the ongoing season. They have won 10 out of the 11 matches that they have played on their home ground so far.

The star striker of Manchester United, Wayne Rooney, will also make a comeback in Wednesday’s match. It’s a big boost for Manchester United as Rooney has been a match winner for them over the years.

Considering the stats and the record of Red Devils at their home ground, Manchester United is the clear favourite to win the Wednesday’s match.

Olympiakos vs. Arsenal

Tuesday evening’s game in Piraeus sees Arsenal travel to Olympiakos in the final round of games from the group stages of the Champions League.

The hosts secured their place in the last sixteen with victory over French Champions Montpellier two weeks ago, but will keen to take three points which could see them leapfrog Schalke to top Group B.

However, Arsene Wenger has chosen to rest several first team regulars, with Jack Wilshere, Santi Carzola, Mikel Arteta and Per Mertesacker not making the trip, while Theo Walcott and Lukas Podolski are side-lined through injury.
Moroccan international Marouane Chamakh is likely to be given a rare start, and you can back the striker to open the scoring at 8.0 (7/1) with a variety of bookmakers.

The Gunners go into the game on the back of their shock 2-0 defeat at the hands of Swansea, a result which has seen them slip to tenth position in the Premier League, and are 3.2 (11/5) with Bet Victor for the win, with Olympiakos favourites at 2.63 (13/8) with Stan James. The draw is 3.4 (12/5) with most firms.

The hosts are guaranteed of third spot regardless on Tuesday nights results, and so will be involved in the Europa League come February.

The Greek Champions go in to the game on good form, having lost just once in all competitions since their 3-1 defeat at Arsenal two months ago.

Striker Konstantinos Mitroglou, who scored that consolation goal at the Emirates, is an 8.0 (7/1) shot with Bet Victor to get the first goal of the game this time around.

Elsewhere, Manchester City travel to group D winners Borussia Dortmund with no chance of making the quarter finals, and will be relying on Ajax dropping points at Real Madrid for them to have any possibility of finish third.


Brendan Rodgers will be hoping to get another victory with Liverpool when they take on Stoke city during the weekend. This has been one of the favourite matches for Liverpool over the years.

They have been undefeated in this fixture for the last 49 years, which is the longest unbeaten record standing in the Premier league. Liverpool come into the match on the back of the 3-2 defeat suffered at the hands of the Italian club Udinese in the Europa league. Despite this, the Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has said that he is confident that the team will be able to build on the 5-2 win over Norwich achieved last weekend.

This win propelled Liverpool past the relegation zone and closer to the top 10 of the table. The Liverpool manager has said that he is looking to get Liverpool back into the top four as soon as possible. Still, bookmakers do not seem to be convinced that Liverpool will be able to beat Stoke city at Anfield. As a result, a draw is the most favoured a result that 10/3, while odds of Stoke city beating them are 7/1. Liverpool are 8/15 to get the second win of the season on the way.

The 1-0 scoreline is also the most favoured by the bookmakers due to the fact that Liverpool have been finding it difficult to finish off the chances that they create. Even though Liverpool have had a lot of chances in the last few seasons, they have struck the post on a number of occasions, while they have also not been clinical enough. The star striker Luis Suarez, though, will be coming into the match on the back of a new phone confidence following the hat-trick he scored against Norwich city last weekend, which was his second for Liverpool.


Manchester United will be looking to avoid two consecutive defeats in the Premier league, which will be a major disaster in the hope of winning the 20th league title this season. Sir Alex Ferguson’s men will be coming into the match on the back of the 3-2 defeat suffered against Tottenham last weekend.

The similarities between Manchester United’s visit to St James’s Park last time around has not been forgotten. Manchester United came into this fixture last season on the back of the 3-2 defeat suffered against Blackburn at Old Trafford. They were beaten by Newcastle 3-0, but went on to win the next 11 matches.

However, Sir Alex Ferguson has said that it is extremely crucial that Manchester United do not allow their concentration to slip in this match. He has also accused the players of not starting the matches properly in the last few weeks. This has allowed the opponents to get a head start in the match, which was then negotiated with the incredible attack of the team. Newcastle will be missing a number of key players for this match, but they will be hoping to take advantage of the weak midfield of Manchester United.

Even though Manchester United come on the back of a defeat, they are the favourites to win the match at 19/20. The home team Newcastle United, meanwhile, are 10/3 to win the match, while the bookmakers also do not rule out the possibility of a draw. As a result, they have placed a draw at 11/4. Newcastle have had only two victories in the Premier league so far and they will be looking to improve their league position starting with the match against the former champions. Manchester United will be hoping to close the gap on Chelsea, who won 4-1 during the weekend.


Prior to the match between Great Britain and Senegal, soccer betting sites have said that the team from England are the favourites to win this match. Team GB and Senegal will be taking on each other in the group match at Old Trafford.

The two teams were competing for the gold medal in the London Olympics 2012. Even though the Team GB may not have been participating in any major competitions for the last 40 years, and won’t have Jack Wilshere in the team, there is high expectations of the team ahead of the London Olympics 2012. Many soccer betting sites have been favouring Team GB to win this fixture easily.

The first round of matches for this under 23 football tournament will be taking part on July 16. These group matches will be taking place until August 1. From then on, it is a knockout tournament that will be looking to deduce the winner, who will walk away with the gold medal. Argentina were the previous winners of the gold medal when the Olympics was held in Beijing the last time around. However, they have not qualified for this summer’s Olympics. Only Brazil and Uruguay have qualified from the South American continent. Brazil, Uruguay and Spain are the favourites to win the London Olympics 2012.

”It is a tremendous honour to be part of the Olympics. Stuart has given me the captaincy, which is even better. I’m really looking forward to it. It’s a unique experience and one from the start that I wanted to be part of when I got the opportunity, ” Ryan Giggs said prior to the start of this match. The Manchester United winger is part of the three overage players that are allowed within the squad. Craig Bellamy is the other man chosen by the manager Stuart Pearce, who has elected to omit David Beckham.


Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has finally said that he expects Robin van Persie to leave the club in the summer, but has assured fans that it will not deteriorate the club in any way. The Dutchman was left out of the squad that went on the pre-season tour to Asia.

He has been linked with a move to Manchester United, Manchester city and Juventus. Manchester United made their first move on the 28-year-old, who has only one season left on his current contract, by submitting a £ 10 million offer. However, it has been instantly rejected by Arsenal, who are thought to be holding out for £ 30 million.

Arsenal endured a difficult summer last season, which was very much similar to the current situation. Despite having just one year left on his current deal back then, Arsenal managed to extract the £ 24 million transfer fee from Manchester city for Samir Nasri. They are planning to do the same this time around as well. Wenger has been publicly backing van Persie to sign a new deal throughout last season, but the Dutchman recently said that he does not want to commit to Arsenal because they are not ambitious enough.

“Robin van Persie is a world-class striker. You know I am a big supporter of him. Our desire is to keep Van Persie. At the end of the day, we will do what is in the best interests of the club. We know how much we had to fight to come third last year because we missed out the start of the season. After seven games we had lost four and we have learned that for us it is vital for us to focus on the start of the season rather than on any transfers,” said Wenger on the pre-season tour to Asia.

Prandelli Plays Down Italy Chances

Italy boss, Cesare Prandelli, insists that Germany will be favourites when the two sides meet in their Euro 2012 semi-final, on Thursday.

The Azzurri were impressive in their last-eight victory over England, but they were made to go the distance, and will meet a fresh Germany side in Warsaw.

“Germany are definitely the favourites, not least because they’ve had two more days to recover,” said Prandelli. “But if we show the same attitude and desire to win again, then we can expect to play another great match.”

Italy midfielder, Daniele De Rossi, and right-back, Ignazio Abate, are fitness concerns after they came off with muscle problems in Kiev, while centre-back, Giorgio Chiellini, and midfielder, Thiago Motta, sat out the quarter-final with hamstring injuries.

Fans placing online bets on Bet365 will need little encouragement to gamble on the fixture.

Prandelli admitted that much rests on getting those players back fit for the fierce challenge against Joachim Loew’s Germany, who go into the match with a 100 per cent record.

“We’re very satisfied but we’ve got to try to get the injured players back, as well as our force and energy,” added the Italy coach, who will also be without suspended defender, Christian Maggio.

Prandelli’s side controlled the game against England, but failed to take their chances, before holding their nerve to win 4-2 on penalties.

De Rossi and Alessandro Diamanti both hit the post with shots, while De Rossi and Mario Balotelli were guilty of spurning gilt-edged chances. Antonio Nocerino also had an effort ruled out for offside late in normal time.

“I wasn’t surprised – I knew we could dictate the play. Our only worry was about not conceding too many counters, but we did really well in stopping those before they developed,” said Prandelli.

A weary Italy outfit are unlikely to see as much of the ball against Germany; in fact, the soccer betting tips indicate that the Azzurri could struggle to end the match with anything other than a loss in Warsaw.


Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has said that Newcastle United hold the key towards determining the destination of the Premier league title this season.

Newcastle will be hosting leaders Manchester City at the St James’s Park on Sunday. It is a very important match for both teams given that Newcastle are chasing the final top four spot, while Manchester City are looking at the possibility of lifting their first ever Premier league title.

Following the 1-0 win in the Manchester derby, City come into the match hoping to win this match and move one step closer towards the title.

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has always maintained that United have the much easier last two matches of the season, while City will have to face Newcastle and QPR.

However, it is the QPR match that is the easier of the two. Hence, there is a feeling amongst the Manchester City supporters and Sir Alex Ferguson that if Manchester City win against Newcastle, then the title is almost within their grasp.

This has led Ferguson into commenting that Newcastle hold the key towards determining the destination of the title. Newcastle come into the match on the back of a morale boosting 2-0 win over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, which was their first win after 25 years.

“Yes. Yes, it looks like it. That’s [Newcastle] a tough game, there’s no question about that. They’ve got two games left. If they win the two games they’ve won the league. They have got to win at Newcastle, that’s the challenge for them. Newcastle, as we know, is a very difficult place to go to and they’re playing well. We hadn’t done it for eight years so their form is good and it will not be an easy game,” Ferguson said ahead of this weekend’s matches.


Tottenham will be taking on Swansea at the White Hart Lane looking to get all three points, which will send them clear of Chelsea in the fifth position.

Tottenham are currently involved in a battle with Arsenal and Chelsea to finish in the Champions League positions. They received a major boost in the form of an Arsenal defeat during the weekend.

The 2-1 defeat suffered at the hands of QPR has provided Tottenham with the opportunity to close the gap on Arsenal to just the goal difference. Meanwhile, Chelsea managed a 4-2 win over Aston Villa, which has brought them closer to Arsenal and Tottenham.

Hence, Spurs were heading into a crunch match against Swansea, who have already beaten the likes of Arsenal and Manchester City this season, looking to get all three points. They are certainly the favourites to do so according to the bookies. Tottenham are the favourites to win the match at 4/9, while Swansea are extremely close at 8/1. There is every chance that the game might be a draw and the bookmakers have given the odds of 7/2 for both teams to share a point. However, it is unlikely that they will be involved in a draw, as Swansea have lost heavily in their last trips to the capital.

Even more confidence inspiring for Tottenham supporters is the fact that bookmakers have reduced the odds on Tottenham finishing in the top four. It is now just 1/20 four Tottenham to finish in the top four this season, while Chelsea are a distant 9/4 to finish in the top four, despite their huge experience in this regard. There is every chance that Swansea might even overtake Liverpool during the weekend after the Merseyside club suffered an embarrassing defeat at the hands of Wigan during the weekend.