STRUGGLING Aston Villa host Crystal Palace on Super Sunday. Brett Curtis (@brett_curtis92) showcases his favourite fancies.
Aston Villa v Crystal Palace | Sunday 12th July 2020, 14:15 | Sky Sports
Aston Villa host Crystal Palace in the second of four Super Sunday clashes in the Premier League.
It really is must-win territory for the Villans now; at the time of writing, Villa find themselves four points adrift of West Ham and Watford outside of the relegation zone with just four games remaining. Those sides face Norwich and Newcastle respectively on Saturday so the gap could extend even further by the time Dean Smith’s side kick-off.
For Palace, there’s little to play for with four consecutive defeats ending any outside chance of a top-half finish. Roy Hodgson will have been impressed with his side’s fightback in the 3-2 defeat against Chelsea though, with Wilfried Zaha and Christian Benteke both ending their goal droughts.
Villa are priced at 5/4 to win this one, and to me this looks very short. Bookmakers often understandably factor in motivation at this stage of the season, but in my view they go overboard at times and I think this is a clear example.
Yes, Villa will be more desperate for the win, but that doesn’t mean they will. They’ve looked incapable of scoring from open play since the restart, with both of their goals being scored by defenders from set-pieces.
Palace are hardly free-scoring themselves and Tuesday night was their first game of the season which that saw five goals or more scored. Only 18% of their games have seen Over 3.5 Goals, with 29% of Villa’s following likewise.
I expect this to be a fairly low-scoring, low-chances affair then, so my play is Palace on the Double Chance market and Under 4 Goals at 23/20 with Bet365’s Bet Builder feature.
Cards may have been a play for me with Villa likely to become desperate regardless of the scoreline, and two of the most fouled players in the league on display in the shape of Jack Grealish and Wilfried Zaha. However, with Martin Atkinson in charge, I’ll leave it alone as an official play as the veteran referee has averaged just 2.76 yellow-cards per game this season.
If you are looking for a bigger price though, adding a card for each team but with Under 5 Cards in the game to the aforementioned Bet Builder gives a tasty looking price 4/1. Only two of Atkinson’s last 20 matches have seen more than four cards, and none since December, yet 13 out of 20 have seen both sides receive a booking.
I do think Ezri Konsa looks a big price to be carded at 9/2 (Bet365) given the right-back will be directly up against Zaha should both start as expected. Konsa has been booked against Manchester United and Chelsea in recent weeks and could find it tough going against the electric winger, who should be full of confidence after his incredible strike against Chelsea in midweek.
Aston Villa vs Crystal Palace – Crystal Palace Double Chance and Under 4 Goals (23/20 Bet365)