LIVERPOOL host Brighton on Wednesday night. Jack Wright (@JackWright_BSB ) is on-hand to preview the match-up.
Liverpool vs Brighton | Wednesday 3rd February 2021, 20:15 | BT Sport
Liverpool look to make it three wins in less than a week as they welcome Brighton to Anfield on Wednesday. The Reds have won their last two games 3-1, looking much more fluid and energised after a poor run of form.
Liverpool are 2/5 favourites and that is completely fair in my view. I expect them to win here. They’ve beaten Brighton at home in 8 of the last 9 and the fact they lost their infamous 68-game unbeaten home run last time out to Burnley, I’m confident they will be well up for getting three points.
One man who loves playing The Seagulls is Mo Salah. He has been involved in 9 goals in his last 7 against them, (5 goals 4 assists). That is a contribution every 63 minutes. Fresh from a brace at West Ham on Sunday, Salah will be itching to get back on the pitch and continue his streak.
My main wager here is backing Liverpool to win with under 3 cards in the match at 6/4 with Bet365’s Bet Builder. This game looks a good one to oppose bookings. 5 of the last 7 head to heads have seen under 3 cards cop and I expect Liverpool to win here, their record against Brighton at home is brilliant. They’ve been winning at half time/full time in their last four home matches against The Seagulls.
Kevin Friend is the referee on Wednesday evening and both of Friend’s trips to Anfield so far this season have seen Liverpool collect 0 cards in both, with the away team collecting one card, in games against West Brom and West Ham.
Yet what is interesting is that on his last 6 trips to Anfield to referee a Premier League match, he hasn’t booked a single Liverpool player, dating back to early 2017/18. In the last 10 games he has overseen them, including away fixtures, he has given them 0 cards in 8/10.
The Reds have blanked on the card front 7 times this season, all in games they have won. 4 of these 7 have been at Anfield. Given the bookies expect Liverpool to win, cards for the home side look unlikely. The only card given to Liverpool in the reverse was for Alisson in the 90th minute for delaying the penalty kick, so we can’t read too much into that either. Friend has refereed this fixture twice in recent years, giving 0 match cards IN BOTH.
Ahead of the midweek PL card, of the 12 select group referees that have overseen 11+ games, Kevin Friend has the lowest card average at 2.33. If we compare the referee data from the whistle blower in the reverse fixture, Stuart Attwell (who gave 3 cards), we get a stark contrast.
They have both refereed 12 matches this term, but Attwell’s 54Y and 1R, is nearly double that of Friend, at 28Y and 2R. His lenience and differential officiating should hopefully see us win these bets.
The main reason for these bets is Kevin Friend’s reluctance to caution The Reds:
- Kevin Friend hasn’t booked a Liverpool player at Anfield in any of his last 6 visits.
- Friend has given Liverpool 0 cards in 8 of his last 10 games refereeing them.
- Friend has given Under 3 match cards in 10 of his last 10 Liverpool games.
- Friend has given Under 2 match cards in 8 of his last 10 Liverpool games.
- Friend has refereed this game twice in recent years, giving ‘No booking’ in 2/2.
- In every game Liverpool have seen 0 cards, they have won.
- The only Liverpool card in the reverse came in the 93rd minute when Alisson was wasting time.
- In games Liverpool have received 2 or more cards, they haven’t won 5 of these 7.