CHELSEA have one hand on the title as we approach the penultimate week of the 2016-17 English Premier League campaign.
Tottenham Hotspur’s shock loss to West Ham United means the Blues can wrap things up with a win at West Bromwich Albion.
Liverpool and Manchester City are in prime position for UEFA Champions League qualification, although Arsenal are still in the hunt after beating Southampton in midweek.
It’s lights out for Sunderland and Middlesbrough, both of whom will slink back to the second tier next season.
Hull City could throw a real spanner in the works if they beat Crystal Palace, while a win for Swansea City would guarantee the Welsh club another season in the EPL.
Here are out top tips and first goalscorer picks for week 37 of EPL 2016-17.
Matchweek 37 Premier League betting
Everton -227.27 – Draw +350 – Watford +650
West Brom +750 – Draw +400 – Chelsea -277.78
Man City -400 – Draw +550 – Leicester +1000
Bournemouth -105.26 – Draw +260 – Burnley +280
Middlesbrough +280 – Draw +250 – Southampton +100
Sunderland +300 – Draw +280 – Swansea -117.65
Stoke +400 – Draw +333 – Arsenal -163.93
Crystal Palace +100 – Draw +250 – Hull +280
West Ham +380 – Draw +300 – Liverpool -142.86
Tottenham -142.86 – Draw +280 – Man United +400
West Bromwich Albion vs. Chelsea
Saturday, May 13, 2017 – 5am AEST – The Hawthorns
- Chelsea full-time/Chelsea half-time – +100 at Sportsbet
- Eden Hazard first goalscorer – +350
There is not an awful lot at stake for West Brom.
Even after six games without a win, they are on track to finish inside the Premier League top 10 for the first time in four years.
Matt Phillips and Hal Robson-Kanu should be back in the mix after injury layoffs, while Johnny Evans is expected to recover from an ankle problem.
For Chelsea, it is very simple: win the match, lift the trophy.
N’Golo Kante is the only injury concern, but even he could be available for what is expected to be a title parade.
The Blues have beaten West Brom in only four of their last 10 meetings, but there is no reason to suspect they will falter this time.
Stoke City vs. Arsenal
Sunday, May 14, 2017 – 2:30am AEST – Bet365 Stadium
- Both teams to score in second half – +184 at CrownBet
- Xherdan Shaqiri anytime goalscorer/Stoke win – +2000 at Ladbrokes
Stoke’s mediocre campaign is finishing much as it begun.
Draws against West Ham and Bournemouth in their last two outings mean the Potters have managed only one win in their last nine Premier League games.
They do, however, have a happy habit of frustrating the Arsenal.
Arsene Wenger’s men have not won at Stoke since 2010, and that remains their only victory there since the Staffordshire club returned to the top flight in 2008.
Wins over Man United and Southampton have improved the mood around the Emirates, but the Gunners have a lot of work to do yet if they wish to scare Man City or Liverpool out of the top four.
There are enough chinks in Arsenal’s armour to justify betting against the favourites here.
Crystal Palace vs. Hull City
Sunday, May 14, 2017 – 9pm AEST – Selhurst Park
- Draw/under 2.5 goals – +320 at William Hill
- Oumar Niasse anytime goalscorer – +250 at Sportsbet
Palace were on their way to safety three weeks ago, but a hat-trick of defeats has put them back in bother.
If they lose this one and Swansea beat Sunderland, the Eagles will be fighting for survival on the last day of the season.
Their defensive stocks are sorely stretched with Scott Dann, Mamadou Sakho, Papa Souare and James Tomkins all injured, while Yohan Cabaye is also dealing with a knock.
Hull’s situation is even more urgent after their disappointing defeat to the Black Cats.
If they cannot steal three points at Selhurst Park, the Tigers will be relegated if Swansea win on Wearside.
With Palace goalless in three games and Hull unable to score in their last two, a repeat of their 3-3 belter at the KCOM seems unlikely.
Tottenham Hotspur vs. Manchester United
Monday, May 15, 2017 – 1:30pm AEST – White Hart Lane
- Spurs wins/both teams score – +300 at William Hill
- Harry Kane first goalscorer – +350
Spurs must feel like they have blown it all again.
The defeat at West Ham has all but killed their title hopes.
If Chelsea get it done at West Brom, the clash at White Hart Lane will be something of a dead rubber.
Man United’s team selection against Arsenal spoke volumes of where their priorities lie right now.
It looks like Europa League or bust in their quest for a spot in UEFA’s top competition next season.
Most signs points to Spurs, who will be keen to come home strong and make sure of second place after their capitulation last term.