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Aston Villa v Everton
Steven Gerrard's men had a particularly poor start to the season after losing to newly promoted side Bournemouth (2-0), with new signing Diego Carlos flattering to deceive at the back on his Premier League debut.
Everton started poorly against Chelsea but slowly got into the game by staying patient and showing some grit. All things considered, Frank Lampard will be a bit disappointed not to get at least a point against his former club, though he’ll have been heartened by the display.
These sides have played each other six times in the last three years and this fixture has been completely dominated by Aston Villa with a record of W4-D2-L0 in that time. Despite this, Gerrard has a poor 35% win rate in charge of the midlands club, and based on the display last weekend there’s certainly some hesitancy about backing them as favourites.
Under both of the new managers, Everton and Villa seem to have a considerable amount of corners owing to their attacking intent. Everton have an average of 10.13 corners when playing teams in the bottom half and Aston Villa have averaged 12.44 corners against teams who finished in the bottom six last year. Six of the Villain's nine such games under current management finished with +10.5 corners.
OVER 10.5 CORNERS
Southampton v Leeds United
After going 1-0 up inside 12 minutes of play, Southampton looked like they were going to start the season on a strong note but their lead only lasted nine minutes thanks to Ryan Sessegnon. Eric Dier scored the second ten minutes later and then the game was gone after a two-minute period where the Saints conceded two early in the second half.
Leeds managed to claw back their clash with Wolves after a Daniel Podence goal at the start of the game was cancelled out thanks to Rodrigo Moreno, and an own goal due to Rayan Ait Nouri gave Leeds the points.
Since the 2018/19 season, Ralph Hasenhuttl has played 19 home matches against teams that finished in the bottom six, his record is a strong W11-D3-L5 and his side have won five out of their last seven against such opponents including a 1-0 win over Leeds last year. The Saints also managed three home wins-to-nil against that same bracket last year, and of those 11 wins in that run, seven came to nil while Leeds lost-to-nil twice last year when playing away from home and against bottom six sides, so that’s where the value looks to be here.
SOUTHAMPTON TO WIN TO NIL
Arsenal v Leicester
A 2-0 win was a great way for Arsenal to kick off their Premier League campaign as Mikel Arteta has his sights set on Champions League football. Gabriel Martinelli scored the first goal of the season and should have had two after missing an open goal early in the first half. A deflected goal off Bukayo Saka’s cross put the game to bed in the second half.
The Foxes will be bitterly disappointed that they let their two-goal lead slip, Brentford managed to find a way back into the game through goals from Ivan Toney and Josh da Silva. It’s going to be strange for Leicester not to have Kasper Schmeichel in the net with Danny Ward seemingly needing time to settle in
Last season, both times these teams faced off against each other, Arsenal won both by a 2-0 margin and have won the last three ties in a row. Whilst Arsenal’s record at King Power isn’t great (W2-L3), their record at the Emirates is to be expected (W3-D1-L1).
Leicester have been poor against teams that have finished in the top six, under Brendan Rogers their record is W2-D3-L13 in their away games against such sides, their only wins came at the expense of the two Manchester clubs in the 2020/21 season and haven’t won in their last seven attempts. Ten of the seventeen games finished with over 2.5 goals and 12 of Arsenal's 18 home games against teams finishing in the middle third have had the same outcome.
ARSENAL TO WIN AND OVER 2.5 GOALS
Brighton v Newcastle
The Seagulls pulled off a surprise win in their opening game of the season, a brace from Pascal Gross was enough to take them over the line in what was their first win at Old Trafford in the club’s history. The fact that they still managed to win despite selling two of their best players this summer shows that they shouldn’t be underestimated, or that United haven’t made any progress so far under Erik Ten Haag.
Newcastle started their season against newly-promoted side Nottingham Forest, and the Magpies dealt with them with style and dominated the match from the first kick-off.
We think it’s fair to say that both sides should be classed as “middle-third” sides, Graham Potter has played 23 home games against this type of opponent and 15 of those matches finished with under 2.5 goals.
Eddie Howe has only played three games against these opponents due to his short career at Newcastle and two of those matches finished with under 2.5 goals as well.
UNDER 2.5 GOALS
Man City v Bournemouth
The title defenders played as expected against the Hammers last Sunday, they completely dominated the game and never looked like they were going to concede or lose their lead. They finished the game with 76% possession and three times as many passes as the Hammers. Erling Haaland kicked off his Premier League debut in style with a brace which will silence any of his sceptics.
Scott Parker proved that Bournemouth shouldn’t be underestimated with a dominant display over Aston Villa. They took an early lead and never faltered, with the game finishing 2-0 to the Cherries.
Manchester City have played 15 home games against newly promoted sides since the 2017/18 season and had under 3.5 goals markets come off in ten out of these games, this seems like great value considering this is being priced around evens.
The Citizens have also played Bournemouth six times in the last five seasons and have won all six. The interesting thing about these games is that the Cherries scored in four of these games whilst this happened five times in the 15 games Guardiola’ men played against newly promoted sides.
BOTH TEAMS TO SCORE
UNDER 3.5 GOALS
Wolves v Fulham
The Wanderers went 1-0 up in the sixth minute against Leeds last Saturday. Sadly it wasn’t to be for Wolves as they failed to hold on and ended up succumbing to a 2-1 defeat.
Everyone thought that Fulham would be hammered on the first day of the season against Liverpool, but it was quite the opposite and if they can play the same way for the rest of the season, they are all but guaranteed to stay up. Mitrovic was their star man and became the only player in history to dribble past van Dijk and make him concede a penalty in the same game.
Statistically, Wolves have dominated against newly promoted sides with them winning eight of their thirteen matches against these types of opponents. Seven of those wins were to nil and nine of the games finished with under 2.5 goals.
UNDER 2.5 GOALS
WOLVES TO WIN TO NIL (0.5PTS)
Brentford v Man Utd
Brentford have managed to stay up in the Premier League for another season after not being in the top division for 75 years, everyone wrote them off this year as there is a common theme for promoted sides to get relegated within two seasons of coming up but they fought hard on Sunday to come back from two goals down to draw with Leicester.
Manchester United couldn’t get a win in their first game at home to Brighton, if they come out with anything but a win from this game the fans on the red side of Manchester will be more than just disappointed.
Brentford’s home record against teams in the top six was W1-D2-L3 with the only win coming against Arsenal on the first day of the season. The Red Devil’s away record against the middle-third sides last year was W3-D2-L3 but have only won one out of their last six games against those sides. They have lost six away games in a row now including losses to Crystal Palace, Brighton and Everton.
BRENTFORD - DRAW DC
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