Everton could make Rooney pay again
The Premier League is back after the international break and it's a great start to the weekend of action as Everton take on Man United at Goodison Park in the live Saturday lunchtime game.
Wayne Rooney will once again be the centre of attention following revelations regarding his private life. Rooney would probably have liked a home game against Blackpool or Wigan for his return to domestic action but he has no such luxury travelling to the ground of his boyhood heroes where he is guaranteed to receive plenty of stick from the fans who once adored him.
Our 'Match Winner' special for this match is for Wayne Rooney to score a hat trick at a specially enhanced price of 40/1, he is 4/1 to score first.
Alex Ferguson has refused to discuss the matter in today's press conference saying "Let's put it to bed straightaway. I am not discussing any of my players' personal lives". There were some suggestions he may leave Rooney out to avoid any issues but it's such an important game even at this stage of the season that he is set to go with his talisman striker.
Rooney has managed to control his temper much better in recent times but with all the pressure he could crack which would be bad news for United, he is 13/8 to get a yellow card and 14/1 to be sent off. In our specials market he is 25/1 to score and reveal a 'Sorry' message and 66/1 to apologise to wife Colleen during an interview with Match of the Day.
Whilst all eyes will be on Rooney the home side have problems of their own after gaining only one point from their opening league games and they languish in 18th in the early season table.
In my preview for their game against Villa, which they went on to lose 1-0, I highlighted that Everton had been slightly unlucky in the season so far having dominated their games but not had the run of the ball against Blackburn and Wolves to leave them with only a draw to show for their efforts.
That continued at Villa Park with the Toffees almost completely dominant throughout the second half but unable to get the breakthrough. Everton fans should not be too concerned, they are far too good for the run to continue and I expect them to put up a spirited display in this one.
Whilst this game could go either way I think Everton at 16/5 provide the value. United looked shaky at the back in their last away game at Fulham conceding two goals from dubious defending and the international break won't have helped them coming into an early game in such a hostile atmosphere.
When United went to Goodison Park last season, again in an early game, they lost 3-1 in a game Alex Ferguson admits they were "well beaten" in. William Hill offer 33/1 for a repeat of that score.
The home side will be without Jack Rodwell and former United striker Louis Saha for the game but welcome back skipper Phil Neville from injury. Jermain Beckford is likely to start and you can back him at 15/2 for the first goal or 9/4 to net at any time during the game.
I think there will be goals in this one and am going for a long shot bet of Everton to win 3-2 at 40/1. In our double chance market 'Everton or Draw' at 4/5 also appeals as does over 3.5 goals at 11/4.
Enjoy your weekend of sport!
The games kicks off at 12:45 and is live on Sky Sports 2