CARDS specialist Chris Goodwin (@CGeorgeGamble) picks out his favourite fancies from Saturday's Premier League showdown between Watford and Leicester.
Watford v Leicester | Saturday 14th June 2020, 12:30 | BT Sport
Watford take Leicester at Vicarage Road in what is the first Saturday lunchtime match since before the lockdown. The term ‘always avoid the early kick-off’ springs to mind but I think there are some great opportunities in this one.
Lockdown came at the wrong time for everyone but you could argue more so for Watford. The Hornets’ last home game saw them make headlines as they, not only ended Liverpool’s invincible effort, but did so in some style, coming out 3-0 winners. It was a result Watford desperately needed as they continue to battle against the dreaded drop.
The Hornets home games are going to be vital as they appear to be much stronger on their own turf as opposed to on their travels – they’ve won just two games away all season and lost on the road against Crystal Palace immediately after that astounding home victory to the champions-elect.
Leicester, not for the first time, have been one of the surprise packages this season and sit fairly comfortably in third and look set to feature in the Champions League next season.
Brendan Rodgers has implemented a style of play that sees them control games and utilise their possession football. It’s largely due to this that they occupy third with a similar goal difference to that of Manchester City.
It’d be easy to say that Leicester have scored the second most goals away this season and should be too good for Watford but 32% of their away goals came in a single match, beating Southampton 9-0 back in October.
- Commit on average 12.6 fouls per game when playing at home (the most in the league).
- Receive on average 9.1 fouls per game when playing at home.
- When playing teams from the top half at home they have seen 2+ cards in 5/8 games.
- In home games against the top 6 they have seen 2+ cards in 3/4 games.
- When playing teams in the top half at home the opposition has seen 2+ cards in 5/8 games.
- When playing at home against teams in the top 6 the opposition has seen 2+ cards in 1/4 games.
- Their XG for when at home is 23.80 however they have only scored 16.
- Their XG against at home is 19.68 and they have only conceded 17.
- Their most recent home game saw them end league leaders Liverpool’s unbeaten record with a resounding 3-0 victory.
- In their home games against teams in the top 6 there has been over 2.5 goals on 3/4 occasions.
- Have the second worst disciplinary record at home in the league.
- Commit on average 11 fouls per game when playing away.
- Receive on average 11.6 fouls per game when playing away.
- When playing teams in the bottom away from home they have seen 2+ cards in 3/7 games.
- When playing teams in the bottom half away from home the opposition has seen 2+ cards in 5/7 games.
- Their XG for when playing away is 25.47 (the third highest) and they have scored 28.
- Their XG against when playing away is 18.05 yet they have only conceded 13.
- They have scored 2+ goals away to the bottom half in 6/7 games.
Watford are currently fighting for their lives down at the bottom and know how important each result is. They look a much more solid side when they’re on their own turf.
I expect them to make it difficult for Leicester City to get going by breaking up much of their play by fouling them on a consistent basis – no side commits more fouls at home per game than Watford.
Leicester have some quick and skilful players who well be looking to cause problems from the first whistle and as such I expect Watford to pick up a couple of cards at least.
Watford v Leicester – Watford Over 1 Card, Over 2.5 Goals and Leicester Over 3 Corners
Watford v Leicester – Leicester to score 2+ Goals, Leicester to win 5+ Corners and Watford 2+ Cards (TBC Betfair)