Swansea v Stoke – Liberty Stadium at 20:00 live on Sky Sports 1
Gary Monk will be trying to get Swansea back to winning ways at home to Stoke this evening having not won in their last 5 outings in all competitions. Stoke have won their last 3, two in the Premier League, one in the cup and Mark Hughes will be confident of getting something from this one despite their poor record at the Liberty Stadium.
The Swans started their season well, picking up 8 points from their first 4 matches but have since lost 2 away matches and drawn twice at home. Their away defeats to Watford and Southampton were poor but 2 home draws to Everton and Tottenham were well earned against 2 decent sides.
Scoring 7 goals in their first 4 league matches was followed by 3 games without finding the back of the net, but have since put 1 past the Saints and 2 past Spurs. Monk will be happy their baron spell didn’t last too long as there is no doubt that their strength is in their attack. Swansea have a lot of pace going forward and with Andre Ayew set to be fit after a slight knee injury, he, Sigurdsson , Gomis and Montero could cause the Stoke defence some problems.
Stoke have won just once in their last 18 visits to the Liberty Stadium, drawing 5 and losing 12 and have only kept 2 clean sheets in that time. Stoke have won their last 3 matches though and there is no coincidence that their turn in form coincided with the return of Spanish forward Bojan Krkic.
Stoke also have a lot of strength in attack, Arnautovic, Shaqiri and Affelay as well as Bojan are a threat to any side. Mark Hughes has changed Stoke into a side with a reputation for playing aggressive football and I think we could have a really entertaining match on our hands this evening.
Swansea go into the match as 2.03 favourites despite not winning in five. 6 of the last 8 matches between these two has been won by the home side with the other 2 ending in draws. Stoke can be backed +0.5 on the Asian Handicap betting market at 1.98 but I have to side with the home team tonight. The Swans have the 4th best home record in the league and a win tonight would see that become the second best behind Man City.
There is also some real value in the goals market with Over 2.5 goals priced at 2.25. Only 7 of their joint 16 matches have seen 3 or more, but this, a game both will believe they could and maybe should win, I’m expecting it to be open.
Asian Handicap Betting Recommendation: Swansea -0.5 at 2.03
Prices correct at time of writing.
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