LIVERPOOL host Tottenham for a mouthwatering match-up on Super Sunday. We asked Tom Love (@TomLove_18) to source the best bets.
Liverpool v Tottenham | Sunday 27th October 2019, 16:30 | Sky Sports
The big game on Super Sunday takes place at Anfield as league leaders Liverpool welcome a shaky Spurs to Merseyside. Both teams recorded resounding wins in the Champions League midweek after disappointing results at the weekend; you could argue it was more important for Spurs who have seriously underwhelmed this season.
Tottenham's 2019 demise has been well documented but results have fallen off due to a drop in performance levels – it’s not been an unfortunate slide for the North London outfit. Mauricio Pochettino’s side have been top four level in terms of underlying performance data in the last few years but this season they’re in fact bottom five fodder for shots in the box ratio.
Spurs also only rank 10th on the Expected Goals (xG) from open play metric, highlighting their lack of creativity, chiefly due to their lack of width and Christian Eriksen’s poor form.
Spurs' dark clouds have been coming
Even given the calls of derision, they’re actually still overperforming. Spurs are scoring an average of 1.70 goals per-game but xG has that figure closer to 1.30. This drop off is alarming but it has been the dark cloud coming for a while now.
Spurs run a tight ship in terms of finances and as a business that’s great, not many will be turning a profit like them given their general lack of spending. Under self-made restrictions, their ability to become Champions League mainstays and even get to the final last year is majorly commendable.
However, such achievements may alter the thinking of players who believe they're worth more in the current market and that can and has had a negative impact on the pitch.
The nucleus of this side has been together for a good 5-6 years now and it does look like things are going stale. Poch wanted a couple of full-backs in the summer but they never came, he even left out wantaway Danny Rose off the pre-season tour only having to recall him to the side due to lack of bodies in that position.
The Argentinian gaffer has been at the club for almost six years now and given the intensity of regular heavy schedules and additional press coverage there is a worry that he may be getting to the point of burnout.
I’m personally a big fan of Pochettino though and I do think things will turn around. They’ll want to build on that 5-0 midweek win but they couldn’t of picked a less favourable fixture to do that in.
If Liverpool avoid defeat on Sunday it will extend their unbeaten home league run to a mammoth 43 games. The last time they were ousted at their Stanley Park base was back when Sam Allardyce was Crystal Palace manager, many moons ago.
The Reds' 17-game winning run was halted by fierce rivals Manchester United last weekend but the Merseysiders tend to be more defence-focused and pragmatic operators on the road, regularly winning by the odd goal. At home they let loose though and their sheer intensity and dynamism often proves too much for the opposition.
It’s a major boon for Jurgen Klopp that Mo Salah is back fit, his presence was sorely missed at Old Trafford. What’s more, the charismatic German has been presented with a few selection headaches after Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain notched two in Belgium on Wednesday whereas Adam Lallana and Naby Keita have both come in and impressed over the last couple of games.
The betting angle
Liverpool actually look an attractive price at 8/15 considering their superb home form but I’m happy to boost that to an odds-against quote of 21/20 (Coral) by throwing Over 2.5 Goals into the equation.
The reigning European champions have won 11 on the bounce at Anfield, scoring two or more in each of those. Nine of those 11 have seen Over 2.5 Goals cop too. If we go back even further they have won 21/23 on their own patch and 16 of those wins have seen three or more goals be scored.
On the flip side, Spurs have been dreadful away from home since February. They’ve garnered an abhorrent W0,-D2,-L8 record in their last 10 on the road in the Premier League, conceding twice or more in on eight occasions. Overs has copped in their last four away too. I
wouldn’t be overly surprised should Tottenham score, after all Liverpool have conceded in all four of their home games this season; but you can only back one team here given the respective home/away records. It looks a clever way to get a more backable price on the favourites.
Liverpool have been winning at Half-Time and Full-Time in each of their last six home league games so the 13/10 on that could be a fair punt but the price isn’t as big as I thought we could get so we will keep it simple and back the hosts to win a goal-filled game.
Liverpool v Tottenham – Liverpool to win and Over 2.5 Goals (21/20 Coral)