System Bet Predictions, 22.8
- Norwich v Stoke: 2 @ 3.40
- Hamburg v Stuttgart: 2 @ 2.50
- Lazio v Bologna: X @ 4.50
- Toulouse v Monaco: X @ 3.20
- System Bet Recommendation: Doubles (2/4 – 6 bets)
Norwich v Stoke prediction: 2
Having been extremely hard done by in a 3-1 home loss to Crystal Palace, Norwich brushed it off to cash in on another poor Sunderland start with a win by the same scoreline at the Stadium of Light.
One point and a minus-one goal difference isn’t too bad a return for Stoke from a campaign-commencing double header of Liverpool at home and Tottenham away given the pair’s top-6 roots.
Stoke have lost only 4 of their past 12 Premier League away matches, and 3 of those to sides that finished above them.
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Hamburg v Stuttgart prediction: 2
Hamburg have to recover quickly from the 0-5 defeat in Munich last weekend and several off-field issues.
The past two campaigns have seen HSV require a relegation play-off to keep their top tier status intact and many pundits point towards another season of struggle following a summer of rebuilding.
Stuttgart have lost 1-3 against Köln, despite being the better team for large parts of the match. The Reds showcased their new enterprising attacking style under new head coach Alexander Zorniger, firing in 12 efforts in a frantic first-half. The Swabians hit the woodwork twice and squandered a hatful of excellent opportunities before being picked off on the counter-attack in a thrilling final 15 minutes.
Stuttgart have won their last 3 matches against Hamburg in all competitions.
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Lazio v Bologna prediction: X
Lazio are buoyed by a superb midweek result in their Champions League qualifier. Their single-goal victory over Leverkusen didn’t come without cost, however, Miroslav Klose withdrawn at half-time and Stefan de Vrij stretchered off during the second half. Neither are likely to play any part on Saturday. Klose’s absence, coupled with Filip Djordjevic’s ankle injury, means the hosts look increasingly stretched in the striker department.
Stefano Pioli will be hoping his side make a better start to the season than this time last year – 3 defeats in the opening 4 games.
Bologna will be looking to take advantage of any Lazio’s hangover.
The visitors have strengthened impressively, with experienced Serie A stalwarts Antonio Mirante, Mattia Destro, Matteo Brighi and Franco Brienza arriving in the club. Most intriguing of all, however, is Lorenzo Crisetig, a gifted young midfielder signed on a two-year loan deal from Inter having impressed for the Azzurri during the European Under-21 tournament this summer.
Delio Rossi and Stefano Pioli’s managerial head-to-head record is identical; 2 wins, 3 draws, 2 defeats.
Toulouse v Monaco prediction: X
Toulouse have performed admirably in their opening day win over St Etienne (2-1), were a tad unlucky to lose at Caen last time out and have W5-D3-L2 when hosting top-half teams in 2014/15.
In fact, Toulouse picked up 30 of their 42-point haul last season at home.
Monaco will have felt hard done by following their 3-1 Champions League qualifying loss at Valencia on Wednesday and they will be looking to dust themselves down and return to Ligue 1 action.
Monaco have been the best performing away team in France since Jardim joined the club with W13-D2-L5 return from 20 road trips.