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Neither of these two teams can boast the best of recent runs with both of them winning just once across their last six. Everton did manage to overcome Arsenal at the weekend, ending a run of three straight stalemates and they’ll be eager to kick on from that and stay in the race for European football.
Villa have lost to all of Sheffield Utd, Spurs, Liverpool and Man City across their last eight outings, as their only win over that period came against 18th placed Fulham, while stalemates with Wolves, Newcastle and West Brom aren’t exactly the best of results if they’re to push for those European places.
They’re certainly missing the creativity and drive that their captain Jack Grealish brings to the table, and with mid-May being set as his return date they’ll need to rely on the likes of Ollie Watkins, John McGinn, Anwar El Ghazi and Bertrand Traore for the product in the final third.
It’s hard to get away from how poor the Toffees have been at Goodison Park this term, and over their last eight matches here only Liverpool and Fulham have picked up fewer points than their six.
Considering their only win came against a Saints team in the midst of their current W2-D1-L12 run since mid-January, while Carlo Ancelotti’s men also lost to bottom half sides Newcastle, Fulham and Burnley, we certainly wouldn’t jump at getting behind them as favourites.
Everton 1 Goal Winning Margin
Villa haven’t been hitting the headlines for their away form though. They’ve gone W2-D2-L2 across their last six on the road, but one thing that has been consistent is the fact that all of those have had one goal or fewer separate the two teams.
They do remain a woeful W2-D1-L8 against the current top eight sides in the table though which does make for concerning reading for Villa fans, losing all the last seven, and when you considering five of their eight such defeats came by single goal margins, that could be the way to go in this one.
Seven of Everton’s last eight victories in the league have all come by one goal margins, while by the same token, the Villains have lost by that margin in nine of their last 12 defeats and that’s certainly the angle we like for this encounter.
To further our reasoning, you only have to look at Villa’s performances without Grealish. They’ve gone W2-D3-L7 since the start of last term without their talisman starting, as six of those seven defeats came by single goal margins.