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We had a decent week with a number of winners in the CL and now its time for the PL. Not huge pickings this week but 3 games that I fancy. These picks are just as much about how poor a few sides are rather than the other side being great. Some real pressure already starting to build on a few managers.

Match: Southampton vs Watford
Premier League – Saturday 3pm
Bet: Watford +0.25AH
Odds & Bookie: 1.81 at BetVictor
Stake: 1 unit

This bet is almost as much anti Saints as it is pro Watford.

Saints have won just 4 home games in the last 24 games, losing 10. These wins have come against Bournemouth, Everton, WBA, West Ham. All of these wins came last season. This season they have P5 W0 D3 L2. Draws against Newcastle (0-0), Brighton (2-2) Burnley (0-0). However you look at this its not a great record.

In the whole of 2018 Saints have won just 4 matches – Palace away – No Zaha, Swansea, Bournemouth and WBA. Hardly 4 sides that are blessed with quality. They have FTS to score in 6 of their 11 games this season, which shows how bad they are in front of goal as they generate a number of shots and SOT. 158 shots on goal is the same number as Liverpool and 50 SOT is up there with the best in the league – but with just 7 goals all season. Shot to goal ratio see Saints 2nd worse in the league and SOT to goal ratio is the worst in the league!

Expected points would see them sit 14th.

Watford look a decent side this season and were very unlucky in losing to Newcastle last weekend. They have only lost 4 games this season – Arsenal, Man Utd, Bournemouth (where they had 10 men) and Newcastle.

Away from home they conceded fewer shots and SOT than Liverpool, Utd and Spurs and therefore its no surprise to see that they have the 4th best xGA. Going forward they also look in good nick with the 6th best away xG in.

Expected points would see Watford 8th and given that they are defensively sound I am not sure I can see Saints scoring. A draw here would see us win half out stake.

Match: Newcastle vs Bournemouth
Premier League – Saturday 3pm
Bet: Bournemouth 0.0AH
Odds & Bookie: 1,82 with BetVictor
Stake: 1 unit

Newcastle were lucky last weekend to get a much needed victory over Watford – they lost the xG 0.69 vs 2.43.

Much like the Saints bet this very much about how poor Newcastle are. They sit joint bottom on xpts and xG. They have P6 W1 L5 so far this season and scored just 4 goals at home. They look a team that is really going to struggle, they don’t create or score enough goals.

When you expected goals for and against is 0.78 vs 1.59, you can see the issues. Only Brighton & Burnley have had fewer shots at goal than the Toon and the average just 3.09 SOT per game.

I am just not sure I can see Newcastle being as lucky as they were last week again.

Bournemouth are doing well.

Middle of the road for shots and SOT attacking wise but at the other end they are much better than you would expect. Only 4 sides concede fewer SOT and therefore their xGA is 1.25 whilst their xG is 1.911 which is only bettered by City, Liverpool and Chelsea. They are clearly creating some excellent opportunities and with Brooks, Fraser and Wilson they have 3 players in fine form.

Expected points would have Bournemouth 4th in the league and Newcastle joint bottom. I feel that the Cherries will score and then can we really see the home side scoring twice? Newcastle have scored 2 or more twice in 17 games!

Match: Cardiff vs Brighton
Premier League – Saturday 12:30pm
Bet: Brighton 0.0AH
Odds & Bookie: 2.16 at BetVictor
Stake: 1 unit

Cardiff are out of their depth. Lets make no mistake. 1 win at home (over Fulham, who everyone beats) and the most home goals conceded. They did start ok with a number of games where they tried to keep in tight and nick the game, but as soon as they feel they have to attack sides they open up. This should be one of those games. Both sides will want to win and if the game opens up I feel that Brighton will pick them off.

Only 4 sides have fewer shots and 3 sides fewer SOT. From open play they have an xG of just 0.61 and set pieces are 0.42. I am confident that Brighton will be able to repel the Cardiff set pieces. From their 11 games this season they have only won the xG in 3 games.

Brighton aren’t in amazing form, but I do think they are better than Cardiff. They have lost 4 away games this season, but these were all to side currently in the top half. Against sides in the bottom half the they have a record of P5 W3 D2

Glenn Murray is in great form and has an xG of 0.42 which is very competitive in the PL.

If Brighton avoid defeat we get our stake back

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