Watford v Stoke Preview: Hornets to send the Potters packing
Sunday’s Premier League action begins at Vicarage Road as Watford host Stoke. The hosts have quietly made their way up the table after a sticky start to the campaign and now sit in eight place. In contrast to several other clubs, instability doesn’t seem to affect the Hornets quite as much as some others.
Several managerial changes and an ownership regime who own several clubs around the continent have facilitated plenty of player turnover in recent years but they are now looking every inch an assured and stable top flight side, especially on home soil.
Betway go 7/5 (2.40) on the home win and that price is certainly not without appeal. Walter Mazzarri’s men have already taken some impressive scalps at the Vic this season. Manchester United and Leicester City were both sent packing and the hosts have now won three of their last four at this ground.
Stoke may have climbed out of the relegation zone but Mark Hughes’ men are looking fragile, especially on the road. The Potters are 11/5 (3.20) to buck a trend which has seen them win just one league win away from home this term and that came against relegation favourites Hull City.
These odds suggest the two teams are pretty well matched and the draw could prove a popular bet at 23/10 (3.30) for those who are struggling to split them.
One key factor here could be the injuries on both sides. Stoke’s best player this season has been Joe Allen, the influential midfielder has been pulling the strings and getting goals to keep his side afloat but he will miss this game due to suspension and it also looks unlikely Glenn Whelan will be fit to play.
Those two midfielders are a huge loss to the visitors and Mazzarri’s side, who are no strangers to dominating the battle in the centre of the park, could well have more of an upper hand than the odds suggest. With that in mind, Watford to win at 7/5 (2.40) does look an attractive bet but there could be an additional angle for punters to play alongside the home win.
The Hornets have only failed to score in two of their 12 league games so far this season while Stoke have only drawn a blank in three of theirs, and one of those was last week against Bournemouth when they missed a penalty. Both teams to score looks a solid wager given the two sides’ fire power and it’s on offer at 8/11 (1.73) with Betway. The same firm go Evens (2.0) that at least one team fails to net but that seems unlikely.
Given this fact, a Watford win and both teams to score is worth a look at 7/2 (4.50). High-scoring wins against United, Leicester and West Ham suggest that they are capable of shading a shoot out, especially with home advantage on their side and with Stoke looking a little soft centred due to their absentees, it could be another big win for Mazzarri’s men.