CRYSTAL PALACE host Bournemouth on Tuesday night. Matthew Kirby (@M_Kirby95) delivers his betting analysis.
Crystal Palace v Bournemouth | Tuesday 3rd December 2019, 19:30 | Amazon Prime
The first of the Amazon Prime streamed Premier League fixtures sees Crystal Palace host Bournemouth in an intriguing encounter at Selhurst Park.
Roy Hodgson’s hosts will look to build on the 2-0 victory at Burnley, which ended a run of five games without a win, however, it had been a tricky run of games against the top four and Arsenal.
Bournemouth have lost their last three, all by a solitary goal. Saturday’s defeat at Spurs showed a weakness in the backline with simple balls over the ball catching the Cherries out for both of Dele Alli’s goals.
If Andros Townsend and Wilfried Zaha attempt runs from wide areas to support Jordan Ayew, then the Eagles could well profit in similar fashion.
Could width be the key?
Both of these sides have wingers who can cause plenty of problems for their opposition defence. Harry Wilson showed what he was capable of with a double from the bench at Spurs, while Wilfried Zaha also popped up at the weekend.
But it was the full-backs that I was more interested in. Crystal Palace have only scored nine goals from open play with 9.81xG showing they’ve been clinical when creating those openings.
Patrick van Aanholt ranks as their fifth highest player for Expected Goals (xA) at 1.25xG and the Dutchman scored in both fixtures against the Cherries last season, so he does favour playing them. This season, he’s had 12 shots, three hitting the target with two of them goals, so he’s got a conversion rate of 67%.
Coral have him at 29/20 for two-plus shots in the game, which doesn’t look too bad given his record against Bournemouth.
In the opposing ranks is Diego Rico. The Bournemouth left-back likes to bomb forward and help support the attack. The Spaniard has the joint-second most assists in the Cherries ranks with two, alongside Josh King. But more interesting is his rank in the crossing department.
Overall he sits eighth for crossing this season across the top-flight with 77, an average of 1.8 per game. With the way Crystal Palace like to stay compact, then when Bournemouth do go forward, there could be plenty of space for Rico to exploit and overlap Ryan Fraser or Harry Wilson.
At the time of writing, there were no cross markets available with none yet in the Coral ‘Build Your Bet’ feature.
Not only that, but Diego Rico is one caution away from a one-match ban for the five yellow accumulation. With Liverpool at the weekend, there’s a chance the management at Bournemouth will get him to play for a tactical yellow, so he’s back for a more winnable game.
With two cautions coming in his last two games, plus the way he likes to get forward, then there is a chance someone like Andros Townsend could catch him out of position.
Anthony Taylor is the man in the middle. He’s shown at least five cards in his last seven games in all competitions, so it’s fair to say, he’s fond of a card and he cautioned Diego Rico at Anfield last season.
At 11/4, with Unibet, then the Spanish full-back is definitely of interest for a caution.
Defensive worries for Palace
Roy Hodgson has a number of headaches, especially with his backline. Scott Dann, Gary Cahill and Joel Ward are all sidelined. It will likely mean a rare start for Mamadou Sakho – his last being in the 4-0 defeat at Tottenham in September.
Despite winning the game at Burnley, Hodgson’s men did give the Clarets a good sight of their goal, which resulted in Burnley’s 1.85xG – a more ruthless side would have taken advantage.
Bournemouth could well be that side. They’ve scored 18 goals from a rating of 18.38xGF (expected goals for) highlighting they’ve taken their chances at a sustainable rate.
And with both of these sides having expected goals against ratings in the 23s it could show some defensive vulnerability leading towards a goals-based punt.
The betting angles
When I was delving through the stats there were plenty of attractive angles and approaches that could be taken. I do expect this to be quite a tight game, which is decided on fine margins. That lead me to look at something around the half-time markets.
So far this season, Palace have been level in 8 of 14 games with Bournemouth drawing in 6 of 14. That’s 50% combined for games going in tied at the break in general.
Take it a step further and 5 of 7 Palace home games have been level at the break and there have been just three first half goals scored at Selhurst Park this campaign – the fewest of anywhere in the top-flight.
I did initially have an interest towards each team 4+ corners with Sky Bet, but this has been trimmed into 8/11, which takes away that interest.
The stats are great for that sort of bet. Palace average 6.4 corners at home with the Cherries averaging 5.7 on their travels.
The Eagles have taken 4+ in 6/7 home games with Bournemouth 5/6 in this market in away matches, so 11/13 could make that bet appeal to some, but I’d want a bit more juice on the bones.
To getting something more attractive, you can use the Bet Builder’ feature on Bet365. Adding Over 4 Bournemouth corners (won in 5/6 away games) with Over 0 Goals for Bournemouth comes out around 6/4.