As we approach the business end of the 2013/14 season, the chase for silverware gathers pace. First up in the FA Cup quarter finals this weekend is Arsenal against Everton at The Emirates, the match is live on ITV at lunchtime and we have some free football betting tips for you.
As their Champions League progress hangs by the thinnest of threads, Arsenal will be looking towards the FA Cup and Premier League for a chance to end their trophy drought. Having disposed of Liverpool, albeit rather fortunately in the last round, Arsene Wenger will be looking to get one over on their Merseyside neighbours and last year's winner Roberto Martinez. However, their recent form has not been great with three defeats and a draw in the last six games. Most recently a 1-0 loss away to Stoke saw them overtaken by Liverpool in the Premier League and fall four points behind Chelsea. Whilst fatigue is clearly playing a part in their decline, injuries to key players has hit The Gunners hard. One has to feel sorry for Aaron Ramsey who has had a rotten run of luck since his explosive start to the season.
Nevertheless, they will still be favourites to overcome an Everton side who themselves have had three defeats in their last six. In the fifth round The Toffees comfortably saw off Swansea at Goodison Park and last weekend substitute Romelu Lukaku celebrated his return from injury with a last gasp winner over West Ham. In the corresponding fixture earlier in the season, both teams left it late as the honours were shared in a 1-1 draw. Everton outclassed their hosts for long periods, particularly during the first half, they will take a lot of confidence from this heading into their quarter final showdown.
Early prices have Arsenal as 17/20 favourites to win in 90 minutes and as short as 1/2 to qualify for the semi finals. Clearly underdogs, Everton can be backed at 4/1 to shock The Gunners at home, with the draw on offer at 13/5. Arsenal have a particularly formidable defensive record at home, conceding only three times in their last 13 games. Although I wouldn't bet against an Everton goal, I certainly would against two. On offer with Betfred is a correct score of 2-1 in favour of the home side, reasonably priced at 15/2 the game also falls under their '1 Apiece' promotion which could result in a refund. Correct scores can be a little bit of a lottery but I see this as a decent opportunity, back a 2-1 Arsenal win.
Similarly to last round, Arsenal have Champions League commitments later in the week so it will be interesting to see what kind of team Arsene Wenger goes with on Saturday. Having started the last two games in the competition, Lukas Podolski has scored three goals in the process, I would expect him to play this weekend. With this in mind, back him to open the scoring with Bet365 at 11/2 and to score in an Arsenal win at 11/5 with William Hill. Lauded as Arsenal's best finisher by Wenger, I have high hopes for the German this weekend.
Arsenal v Everton Betting Tips and Predictions
Arsenal to win 2-1 – Bet Here at 15/2 with Betfred.
Lukas Podolski to Score First – Bet Here at 11/2 with Bet365.
Podolski to Score and Arsenal to Win – Bet Here at 11/5 with William Hill.
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