The first international break of the 2022-23 European soccer season is upon us.
Before club soccer comes to a halt for a week-and-a-half, there are some games worth betting across a few of Europe's top leagues.
The English Premier League teams sit in a weird spot because some of them did not play last weekend and others will not play until after the break ends.
There are two spots on Saturday's EPL slate that demand our attention because two of the worst teams in the league hit the road against dynamic attacking squads.
Over in Italy, two of the premier clubs hit the road on Sunday for matches against much weaker competition that they need to win to gain confidence going into the break.
And in Germany, we could finish September with a surprise team on top of the table, as long as it wins on Sunday morning.
English Premier League
Newcastle vs. Bournemouth (Saturday, 10 a.m. ET)
Newcastle (-1.5; +125), Over 2.5 Goals (-125)
Newcastle and Bournemouth's expected goals totals suggest Newcastle could be in for a rout at home.
The Magpies were shutout in their last match two weeks ago, but they recorded an expected goals total of 2.7. They have had a xG total of 1.8 or higher in four of their six league games.
Bournemouth's defense was ravaged by Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool and then it gave up two goals to Nottingham Forest.
Five of Bournemouth's six EPL opponents recorded a xG over 1.5 and it conceded multiple goals in four of those six games.
Tottenham vs. Leicester (Saturday, 12:30 p.m. ET)
Tottenham (-1.5; +120)
Tottenham needs a huge attacking performance against bottom-sitting Leicester City.
Spurs are coming off a deflating loss in the UEFA Champions League to Sporting in Portugal and they could use a multi-goal performance going into the international break.
The upcoming break is important to note because it should allow Antonio Conte to play Harry Kane, Son Heung-min and Richarlison more than usual in a two-game week.
Leicester is second to Bournemouth in goals conceded in the EPL. The Foxes conceded multiple goals in five of their six EPL matches and they have conceded an xG total over one in four of those six matches.
Saturday will not be the time for the Foxes to dig themselves out of the bottom and the result should put Brendan Rodgers on more of a hot seat.
Bayer Leverkusen (-160) vs. Werder Bremen (Saturday, 9:30 a.m. ET)
Bayer Leverkusen pulled me back in.
The German side sits 17th in the Bundesliga table, but it has played better over its last few matches.
Leverkusen scored multiple goals in three of its last four Bundesliga games. It only got one win from those matches, but the signs for a victory are there.
Leverkusen won a difficult Champions League match against Atletico Madrid on Tuesday and that could serve as a boost for Saturday's home clash with Werder Bremen.
This is more of a play on Leverkusen's improving form than anything Bremen has done lately.
Union Berlin (+100) vs. Wolfsburg (Sunday, 9:30 a.m. ET)
Union Berlin can finish the weekend on top of the Bundesliga with a win over Wolfsburg.
Union Berlin benefited from the best defensive record in the German top flight to surge to the top. Union conceded four goals in six matches.
The Bundesliga leader has not done well in Europe, as it has two losses in the UEFA Europa League, but it bounced back from its first loss with a 1-0 win over Koln last week.
Wolfsburg comes into Sunday with five goals in six matches. Even a 1-0 Union Berlin lead may be too insurmountable for Wolfsburg to make up given Union's defensive form.
Monza vs. Juventus (-125) (Sunday, 9 a.m. ET)
Let's make this one simple.
Juventus, a top team in Serie A, should beat Monza, the last-placed team in the Italian top flight.
Juve has not won in its last four matches across all competitions, but it can use Sunday's match as a boost going into the international break.
Monza has the second-worst xGA in Serie A and it scored three goals over its last six games.
Additionally, Monza conceded multiple tallies in all but one of its Serie A matches. All of the numbers suggest Juve's attack can plow past Monza with ease.
Cremonese vs. Lazio (-130) (Sunday, 9 a.m. ET)
Lazio needs to take a trip into bounce-back city.
Lazio was torched in the UEFA Europa League by FC Midtjylland on Thursday and it needs a better performance to erase that awful result.
Cremonese has the worst xGA in Serie A and it is one of five Serie A teams to concede 10 or more goals through six matches.
In its two Serie A road games, Lazio held its opponents under a xGA on one. That gives me hope that Lazio can rebound from the embarrassing midweek loss and go into the international break with a victory.