Everton vs Sheffield Wednesday| Sunday 24th January 2021, 20:00 | BT Sport
So, does Carlo Ancelotti need to win some silverware this season to be deemed a success at Everton?
After losing at the quarter-final stage in the League Cup to Manchester United, the FA Cup is the Italian’s only option for a trophy. He needs to find a way to get The Toffees past Sheffield Wednesday to be in line to face either Tottenham or Wycombe for a place in the last-eight.
Neither side has played a professional game in weeks, with Sheffield Wednesday suffering from a Covid outbreak and Everton having their fixture against Aston Villa re-scheduled.
It’s unlikely Dominic Calvert-Lewin is to be risked after having a hamstring issue, meaning Cenk Tosun is likely to lead the line.
The visitors are on a decent run after Tony Pulis’ controversial sacking, winning all three since he departed. They are also five without defeat although they haven’t played in 15 days come Sunday.
For all their recent form though, the visiting team is really struggling in one department, and that is goals. The Owls are the lowest scoring team in the second tier with just 15 goals, with six of these coming from the penalty spot or a set-piece. So, you’d suspect this will be where they can get at The Toffees. Having said that Everton are decent at defending set pieces, only conceding three, the third lowest in the top-flight.
Given this, I can’t see where The Owls get a goal from. Their top scorer is Calum Paterson sitting on four goals, and their wingers Adam Reach and Kadeem Harris only have two goals between them.
We can get 4/5 (1.8) on Under 3.0 on the Goal Line at BetVictor. It’s 3/4 at Bet365, which is worth taking, too. If there are two goals or fewer in the match, it’s a winner. If there are exactly three goals, our stake is returned.
I was shocked when I saw the price on offer here, you wouldn’t have lost your money backing this in ANY Sheffield Wednesday game this season. They have seen it return profit in 22/27 matches this season which is 81% of games, and in the other 19%, the money would have been returned as a Push.
There are only three teams in the whole English football pyramid (92 teams) with a higher percentage of Under 2.5 Goals in league matches than The Owls, they are Watford, Swansea and Derby. Everton haven’t seen Over 3.5 goals in any of their last TEN, with the bet returning profit in 8/10.
Taking a similar angle, I’ll back the home side to win in a low scoring encounter. Everton and Under 3.5 Goals is priced at 5/4 with SkyBet, and that’s slightly too generous. Other firms go closer to even-money here and we get the 1-0, 2-0, 3-0 or 2-1 score lines on side, a feat Everton have achieved in 5 of their last 6.