Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard

Three new managers face Saturday 3pm tests in the Premier League

Aston Villa, Newcastle and Norwich all begin life under their new managers on Saturday at 3pm.

Steven Gerrard’s Villa are 2.68/5 to end a run of five defeats and beat seventh-placed Brighton.

Newcastle are slight favourites at 2.747/4 to start the Eddie Howe era with victory at home to Brentford.

Dean Smith’s whirlwind couple of weeks culminates with his first time in the home dugout at Carrow Road. His Norwich team 3.711/4 for the three points with an away win for Southampton 2.166/5 the favoured outcome in the early betting.

Reds backed to end in-form Gunners’ run

Liverpool v Arsenal
17:00

Fifth-placed Arsenal travel to fourth-placed Liverpool in the Premier League match of the weekend. The Anfield factor is massive here with the hosts 1.511/2 for the win against an Arsenal 6.86/1 team that haven’t lost since August and have won their last three in the league, conceding only one in the process. The draw, which is how Liverpool’s last league match here ended, is 5.04/1.

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The Gunners’ poor record at Anfield may be a factor in the prices too. You have to go all the way back to 2012 for the last time they won at Anfield.

Union backed to win Berlin derby

Union Berlin v Hertha Berlin
Saturday, 17:30

Local bragging rights are on the line in the German capital on Saturday. Union Berlin are eighth in the table while Hertha are 13th. The latter have won two of the four derbies since Union reached the Bundesliga in 2019, with one draw and a win for Union. The hosts are six games without a win in all competitions, while Hertha have only lost one in their last five, winning three times in that period. And yet the early betting indicates this Union’s chance to get a rare win over their rivals at around even odds. Hertha are 3.953/1 with the draw 3.55/2.

Xavi takes charge in Derbi Barceloni

Barcelona v Espanyol
Saturday, 20:00

Xavi banner Barca fans.jpg

Xavi takes over at Barcelona with the club ninth in La Liga – a position that would have been unimaginable in his heyday as captain. They are 10/11 to finish outside the top four and have it all to do if they’re to be playing Champions League football next season.

Local rivals Espanyol are 11th ahead of this Derbi Barceloni – the first for two seasons – and Barcelona are 1.42/5 to beat them at Camp Nou on Saturday night. The hosts have won the last 13 between the teams on this ground. The away win is 9.28/1 while the draw is 5.24/1.

Nerazzurri aim to gain ground on leaders

Inter v Napoli
Sunday, 17:00

Inter drew a hard-fought Milan derby before the international break and now host Serie A leaders Napoli. The champions, who currently sit third, are 2.3611/8 for a win that would cut the gap between themselves and Napoli 3.3512/5 to four points. Luciano Spalletti’s team would be happy with a draw 3.55/2 in a fixture from which they took a point last season. They are unbeaten in Serie A this term and have conceded just once in their last five in the league.

Marseille aim to stay in Ligue 1 top four

Lyon v Marseille
Sunday, 19:45

PSG may be running away with the title but the race between the teams just behind them in Ligue 1 is tight. Marseille made a strong start but a spate of draws – three in their last five – has seen them slip to fourth, behind Nice and Lens. Jorge Sampaoli’s men remain difficult to beat though – as PSG found in their recent 0-0 against their old enemies – which is one reason why Lyon, who sit seventh, are 1.981/1 to take three points when they host Marseille on Sunday night.

Lyon may still be smarting after being humbled 4-1 by Rennes last time out. The away win is 3.8514/5 but be warned, Marseille haven’t won here for nearly a decade. The draw, which is what happened last season, is 3.9.

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