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Sunday, 21 September 2008

Tottenham Hotspur vs Wigan Athletic: Premier League Prediction Panel 2008/9 - previews and predictions

Tottenham are rock bottom and although the UEFA Cup win was a relief the sooner that they put the transfer sagas behind them the sooner they can climb the table.  A top eight finish is still a reasonable target and this is a good game with which to kick their league season into gear.  Interestingly Spurs have scored and conceded in every game this season so it isn't the attack that is entirely to blame - the defence and goalkeeper need to start getting meaner.

Wigan are doing better than the pundits who once again were raising relegation expectations before the season started; but not so well that the season will be plain sailing.  Bruce has created an unlikely but effective strikeforce in Zaki (every fantasy football teams favourite right now) and Heskey - this might not be a pairing for the cold winter months to come.  Bruce is unafraid to play for a draw and see what happens on the break; and that could well be the tactic here.

Spurs are desperate for points and that could leave them open to a Wigan side that is very effective on the break.

Tottenham Hotspur vs Wigan Athletic; Kick Off 3:00pm, 21 Sep 2008

Prediction Panel
Our panel contains both Squarefootball writers and readers, the writers are marked: (sqf).

Tony Bellew : 1 - 1
Dave Blackburn : 1 - 1
Sue Gardener : 0 - 1
Chris Goodwin : 1 - 2
Paul Grech (sqf) : 1 - 1
Colin Illingworth (sqf) : 1 - 2
Hugh Larkin (sqf) : TBC
Peter Lee : 1 - 1
Don McMahon : 2 - 1
Antony Melvin (sqf) : 2 - 1
Stephen Orford (sqf) : 2 - 1
Tony Ratton : 1 - 1
Peter Rendle : TBC - TBC
Dan Taylor : 2 - 0
Andy Wakeman : 0 - 0
Isaac Williams : 2 - 0
Mark Williams : 0 - 0

Panel Verdict
A split panel here, with the draw the marginal favourite with just two predictions outstanding.

Home: 5; Draw: 7; Away: 3; TBC: 2;

Spread Betting
Spurs are strong favourites with the bookies, but my tip is for another goal for the red-hot Egyptian Zaki - he is the leading scorer in the Premier League and yet is more generously priced than the misfiring Spurs forward line.  As a Spurs alternative Bent looks more likely than Pavlyuchenko right now.

Example: 3pt buy Zaki goal minutes at 18
No goals: you lose 54pts
Zaki scores after 45 minutes: You win 81pts
Zaki scores after 30 and 60 minutes: You win 216pts
Zaki scores after 30, 60 and 90 minutes: You win 486pts
and so on

* Do we have it right, or do you know better?  Please don't bother with derisory comments on the predictions after the match - unless you also pulled us up before it!

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