Brighton vs Arsenal | Tuesday 29th December 2020, 18:00 | Amazon Prime
The tale of two unfortunate teams unfolds on the south coast on Tuesday night… Brighton according to the data and Arsenal according to Mikel Arteta.
Incredibly, despite the fact that they have just two wins and 13 points so far this season, Brighton's performances suggests they deserve far more than that tally portrays. Only two sides have allowed fewer shots on target yet 50% of those shots have ended up in the Seagulls net (league average is closer to 30%) while Graham Potter's men have been profligate in front of goal themselves.
Arsenal did manage a victory over Chelsea on Boxing Day but I don't think that was as simple as the scoreline suggests. Arteta's side scored a penalty and free-kick to go two goals up and while they were the better side in the second half I felt it was more of a case of Chelsea playing poorly rather than Arsenal being impressive.
The thing that would concern me most if I was an Arsenal fan is how little they create, even when they dominate the ball. Arteta stated that they were unlucky to lose to Tottenham but surely he should have been concerned that they create so little against a side who showed so little attacking intent for the majority of the game (Arsenal's xG was just 0.6).
While I don't believe either side will be in a relegation battle in the long-term, I don't expect either side to be particularly gung-ho in this game and should either score the first goal, I expect them to protect what they have rather than look for the second.
I did consider backing 1-1 in the correct score market given that occurs so frequently for Brighton (four of their last 11 matches have ended in this manner) but actually think the 5/2 that SkyBet are offering on a draw is plenty big enough itself and gives me other options.
At a shorter price, the 10/11 on Under 2.5 Goals also appeals. It has obliged in seven of Arsenal's last 11 matches and also six of Brighton's in the same sample.
There have been just 34 goals in 15 Arsenal matches this season and while Brighton's matches have been a little more entertaining in terms of goals (42 in 15) I think that they've tended to adapt to the opposition with goal gluts against Everton and Manchester United and tight games with other teams in the bottom half of the table.
The Seagulls have drawn with the four sides beneath both them and Arsenal (Burnley, Fulham, West Brom and Sheffield United) and all have seen under 2.5 goals. The 10/11 with Bet365 on said bet therefore looks huge to me.
I recommend putting 65% of your overall stake on under 2.5 goals so that if either oblige then you are in profit.