Premier League: Goals could be in short supply


PREMIER LEAGUE expert Daniel McCulloch (@DMcCulloch1984) previews two of Saturday's matches where a pragmatic approach is advised.

Huddersfield vs Leicester | Saturday 22nd December 2018, 15:00

Last week I opposed goals when Huddersfield ‘entertained’ Newcastle and I am going to repeat that this weekend.

New Saints boss Ralph Hasenhuttl may have brought a reputation for attacking football with him but that didn’t look too evident in his first away game at Cardiff. Southampton managed just a single shot on target and an xG of 0.5 in that game and I cannot see this encounter offering too many goals.

Since promotion to the Premier League, if you look at Huddersfield’s results against their peers – so sides from seventh down – then 10 of their 19 home matches have finished with one goal or fewer. They’ve also managed to score two goals or more in just three of their 28 matches at The Kirklees Stadium. Across the same time period, Southampton have managed to score two goals or more in just six of their 28 away games.

Under 1.5 goals is available at 191/100 with Marathon Bet while 1-1 is available at 11/2 with BetVictor. By combining the bets you are getting just shy of even money.

Since the start of last season, such a bet has been victorious in 12 of Huddersfield’s 19 home matches against sides outside ‘The Big Six’ and 10 of Southampton’s away games against sides in this section of the league. That combines for 22 of 37 (59%) games, suggesting that Even money is very much value.

West Ham vs Watford | Saturday 22nd December 2018, 15:00

As a general rule, I am a fan of expected goals but sometimes it can tell white lies. For example, last week the data suggested that a 1-1 scoreline would have been a fair result in the Fulham vs West Ham match.

However, watching the game it was simply the case that Fulham missed one big chance at 1-0 and then West Ham took two chances really well before keeping The Cottagers at arms length for the rest of the contest.

West Ham are available at 7/5 with Betfair to win this match and that is just too big in my opinion. It suggests that Watford are the slightly the better side and I don’t believe that is the case. The two are level in the league standings on 24 points but I would be confident that West Ham finish the season above their opponents this weekend.

The Hammers have won their last four matches, with three of these victories being by two goals or more. Watford have been reasonably impressive at times this season but it’s worth noting that they’ve only found the net 10 times in 17 away games this calendar year.

They’ve won just two games on their travels in that time and even if you ignore their matches against ‘The Big Six’ their record reads played 11, won 2, drawn 4 and lost 5. Three of these losses have been by two goals to nil, so I also like the look of a 2-0 home victory. That is available at 13/1 with BetVictor.

Best Bets

Huddersfield vs Southampton – under 1.5 goals (191/100 MarathonBet)

Huddersfield 1-1 Southampton (11/2 BetVictor)

West Ham to beat Watford (7/5 Betfair)

West Ham 2-0 Watford (13/1 BetVictor)

About Author

I have loved numbers and sport throughout my life, so betting was a natural step. I started writing my own betting column at university and have continued throughout my adult life. I bet on football, golf and the NFL mainly but two flies going up a wall could also capture my attention. I am a West Brom fan and also follow teams in other sports but I think it's fair to say that no side compare with The Baggies!

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