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Adam Bate expects Michael Laudrup's Swans and Roberto Martinez's Latics to build on their positive starts in two winnable home games on Saturday


Swansea
VS
Sunderland
Kick off: 15:00BST
Tip: Swansea to win to nil at 12/5 with William Hill

Sunderland are set to hand club Premier League debuts to big-money signings Steven Fletcher and Adam Johnson at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday, and the Black Cats have also been boosted by Stephane Sessegnon penning a new deal.

But QPR and West Ham were both bolstered by expensive acquisitions when they faced Swansea and it did them little good, losing 5-0 and 3-0 respectively.

Far more significant is the progress the Swans seem to be making under Michael Laudrup – retaining Brendan Rodgers' passing ideals while adding quality individuals in three-goal Michu and now Pablo Hernandez, too.

Sunderland were also Swansea's visitors for the third weekend of last season and that ended goalless in Wales. As the first two games of this campaign have shown, the Swans can still be a tough team to score against, and with Sunderland's new-look attack still bedding in this could be the game that sees the home side go top of the Premier League in convincing style.

Wigan
VS
Stoke
Kick off: 15:00BST
Tip: Wigan to win at 5/4 with William Hill

Many were expecting Wigan to falter in the early weeks of the season after being given a tough assignment against Chelsea before facing a trip to newly-promoted Southampton and a cup tie at Nottingham Forest.

While the European champions caught the Latics out early on, both the Saints and Forest were well beaten, and Roberto Martinez's side appear to have carried on from where they left off last season.

It is now nine wins from 12 games for Wigan. To put that into context that is more than Barcelona, Real Madrid, Manchester United and Manchester City – the four favourites for the Champions League.

The fact that this upturn in fortunes has been sparked by a change to three men at the back makes it a possibility that Wigan's price can still provide real value in the betting market.

In contrast to their hosts, Stoke are on a dismal run of form, having won just one game in their last 15 - and that was against a woeful Wolves side.

The extra-time Capital One Cup defeat to Swindon in midweek means Tony Pulis' side have now gone nine games without a win and history suggests it is unlikely to come on their travels – only QPR lost more Premier League games away from home last season. This one ended 2-0 to Wigan in March and a repeat would be no surprise.

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Adam Bate is a professional freelance journalist who specialises in football and betting. He is editor of GhostGoal which can be found here - you can also follow Adam on

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