Everton to crank up top-four pressure with Newcastle triumph

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The contrasting situations of Everton and Newcastle are highlighted beautifully with one cursory look over the injury lists of both teams.

Newcastle, who have zilch to play for, are missing more senior figures than an absentminded carer with Alan Pardew closing out his stadium ban and first-teamers Loic Remy, Davide Santon and Mathieu Debuchy all sidelined.

Everton, on the other hand, could have club skipper Phil Jagielka back on the pitch after he was passed fit, while Romelu Lukaku recently returned to boost the striking stocks.

That news naturally emphasises a bet on Everton to win the match, at 6/5, while prices for Newcastle (23/10) and the draw (12/5) should be avoided.

What makes that train of thought even stronger is the Toffees’ rock-solid record against teams who must look upwards to locate the Merseyside club in the league table.

In the 21 tussles Roberto Martinez’s men have had with lower-placed sides this season, they’ve lost once and won 13.

That kind of ruthlessness is exactly what has the men from Goodison Park dreaming of a long-awaited return to the Champions League – a reunion that is priced at 14/1.

Away form isn’t something that Martinez has found in his new job. Only four of those previously mentioned 13 successes have come on the road and for that reason, a saving bet on Everton in the draw no bet market at 3/5 is recommended.

For a more quirky option, take a look at our prices on a penalty being scored or missed, as this fixture has seen the joint-most spot kicks awarded in Premier League history, with 17.

As Leighton Baines is in dead-eye form from the spot too (he’s never missed in 12 top-flight attempts), the 2/1 on a penalty being notched looks tempting. Conversely it’s 9/1 that a spot kick is missed.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.