Leicester v Leeds
Leicester were winless through five games, picking up two draws and three losses before they went to Turf Moor and beat Burnley 2-0 in midweek. Despite finishing the game with a comfortable scoreline, the Foxes had to wait until the 82nd minute to score their first goal and it looked to be the only goal until Leicester’s main man Jamie Vardy stepped up to score in the 90th minute to double their lead.
The big story coming out of Elland Road is that long-time manager Marcelo Bielsa has left the club by mutual consent. His stubborn, high octane style of play was ultimately his downfall, with poor results piling up leaving the board with no choice but to look for a new manager.
Jesse Marsch has already been appointed as Bielsa’s successor, and it’s unsurprisingly been met with some skepticism due to his below par time with Leipzig in the Bundesliga, who are now thriving without the American at the helm. We should see him for his first game in the Premier League and it’ll be interesting to see what he can bring to the biggest league in the world.
Leeds have a record of W2-D1-L8 across their past 11 games in all competitions. The Whites managed back-to-back wins against Burnley and West Ham but have been made to look poor on nearly every other occasion, conceding 20 goals in the last five games alone. Despite Leicester having a few shaky games as of late, we think they are good value to get the win here.
In the eight games that Leicester have played against teams lower than them in the table, 13th-20th, six of them have resulted in BTTS markets coming off and they also won two out of the three home games against the same opponents.
LEICESTER TO WIN AND BOTH TEAMS TO SCORE
Burnley v Chelsea
Burnley have only garnered two wins since October, leaving them with a record of W2-D8-L5 over the course of this period. They have really struggled to get over the line this year with a draw being their most popular outcome, with their 12 already this year equating to 48% of their games. The Clarets have also had five 0-0 draws already this season, 20% of their games.
Chelsea came back from losing positions twice in their FA Cup match against Luton Town, although this is a game which they definitely should have been winning, it is still an impressive feat to do it twice in a single game. However, this does highlight some of the issues that Thomas Tuchel has been facing since his appointment last year, even if he did put out a weakened side. In the previous FA Cup game against Plymouth, which was at Stamford Bridge, they went 1-0 down in the eighth minute but managed to crawl back again and win in extra time. The Blues have drawn four games against teams placed tenth or lower and they all finished with 1-1 scoreline including the last game that was played against the two teams earlier in the season.
Chelsea only conceded three goals (one goal in three different games) in the first ten games of the season but since then they have proved susceptible to a concession, this is proven by BTTS markets coming off in ten out of their next fifteen matches. The injuries of Reece James and Ben Chilwell around this period will be one of the biggest contributors to this stat as Chelsea haven’t changed the way they play, just less quality in those positions due to the injuries. This is the best value for this game because it is currently sitting over 2.2, with James still needing time to get back to full fitness.
BOTH TEAMS TO SCORE
CHELSEA TO WIN BY 1 GOALS MARGIN
Wolves v Crystal Palace
Wolves have proved to be a very difficult team to play against this year, they are a highly structured team that even the best clubs in the league have really struggled to break down. Their defensive resilience has meant that they barely concede, they sit fourth in the goals against table behind the top three teams in the league. Bruno Lage has done are fantastic job in his first year in charge but he will need to develop his attacking play at some point during his stay at Wolves. They have currently scored the third least number of goals with 24, Burnley have scored 22 and Norwich in last place with only 15 goals to their name.
Palace have only won three games since the 20th of November and their record since that point is just W3-D6-L7. Although this may seem like a terrible record for a team pushing for a decent mid-table spot, it is not as bad as it seems on the surface. Their losses were against Chelsea, Man Utd, Tottenham, Liverpool, Aston Villa and Leeds and despite their defeats against the latter two they can’t expect to be winning against teams that occupy the top 6 spots in the league.
16 of Wolves’ games this season have been drawing at HT, this is around 62%, giving implied odds of 1.62, and nine of Palace’s games have had the same result. When Wolves have been drawing at HT they have gone onto W8-D3-L5, their losses were against West Ham, Man City, Man Utd, Liverpool and Palace themselves. The Eagles have W2-D4-L4 when they have been drawing at HT, and the value looks to be with the hosts edging this one in the second period.
HT / FT - DRAW / WOLVES
Liverpool v West Ham
Jurgen Klopp’s side have seemingly come out of nowhere to challenge City for the title, they were the only team that could have caught up to City in the first place but now they are only three points behind them if they win their game in hand. This will be a huge game in the lead up to the title race, West Ham have shown that they have the ability to take it to the big teams this year and have already beaten Liverpool once this season.
The Hammers have proven to be a bit of streaky team thus far as they have had back-to-back losses on three separate occasions already and their other two losses came in the span of three matches. There were five goals in the last match that these two played against each other, a 3-2 victory for West Ham in what could have been Alisson’s worst performance in the Premier League. He was arguably at fault for all three of the goals, and he’ll be determined to avenge that performance this time round.
Liverpool have been known throughout the Klopp era as a team that will just score more than you, they have so much ability going forward that West Ham should be frightened. The new addition of Luis Diaz has been superb with him already settling into the Sadio Mane inverted winger role. They just scored six without reply against Leeds and have an average of 3.46 match goals per game.
We think that +3.5 Goals is the best market for this game because this market has come off in six out of the Reds last nine games and it also happened in the previous fixture earlier this season. +3.5 Goals has also come true in five out of West Hams last ten and considering it is being priced around 2.3 this bet has an exceptional value, especially when considering Liverpool’s high line and the space that the likes of Jarrod Bowen will be able to exploit.
OVER 3.5 GOALS
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