West Brom vs Burnley | Monday 19th October 2020, 17:30 | Sky Sports Box Office
West Brom face Burnley on Monday night football’s first match but with this one being on the Premier League’s pay-per-view service. Burnley remain one of the teams yet to win a Premier League fixture, but having said that, they have played two games fewer than those above them.
Slaven Bilic’s visitors have only averaged 6.8 shots in their four games thus far. They have found it hard to adapt to life in the top-flight but have had some tough fixtures. Games against the likes of Burnley are matches the Baggies need to pick three points up in if they are to have a chance of remaining in the division.
West Brom’s last home performance against Chelsea showed real signs of promise but their capitulation from being three goals ahead was a real blow. Boasting only 1.74 on Expected Goals (xG), Bilic’s men face an uphill task in turning that around, and the arrival of Karlan Grant from Huddersfield has certainly been prompted by their lack of resources up top.
Albion’s five goals this far have come from just 10 shots on target in the four games, a 50% conversion rate. Whilst that may come across as clinical, such data is not sustainable in the top-flight and star men Grady Diangana and Matheus Pereira will have to create more for their strikers if they are to start creating more dangerous situations.
Burnley have also started slowly, collating zero points in their first three. They have conceded eight goals already which goes against the norm of Sean Dyche’s team somewhat but dive a little deeper and the centre-back pairing of captain Ben Mee and James Tarkowski are yet to play together this season which is a huge factor.
This game at The Hawthorns comes too early for Mee who is not yet match fit but Jay Rodriguez has been passed fit for his personal return to West Brom which is a huge bonus given the success his partnership with Chris Wood had last season.
Last season, Dyche’s men failed to beat both Sheffield United and Aston Villa, two of the three promoted sides, meaning their record against the promoted sides was: W2-D2-L2. However, in these six games, they only failed to score once, at Bramall Lane.
The betting angles
My first bet will come in the cards market. I will be backing 20+ Burnley Booking Points at 4/5 with Sky Bet. Burnley have picked up six yellow cards in their first three matches, averaging two a game.
The referee for this one in the West Midlands is Anthony Taylor who has given six yellows and one red card thus far, but was one of the more card-happy officials in the top-flight last season.
West Brom have some tricky players in Diangana and Pereira, who draw a lot of fouls, which is key to this market. Diangana himself was fouled seven times against the Saints in West Brom’s last outing, with Pereira suffering four against Chelsea last month.
Burnley are an extremely physical side and Dyche is not the type of boss you want if you are going to pull out of a tackle. This bet requires two yellow cards or just one Burnley red card. Given it is 4/7 with most other firms who are usually better price in this market than Sky I think there is a touch of value.
Secondly, I will also back Burnley Most Booking Points at 5/4 SkyBet – it is the same price with William Hill. The Clarets have had more cards than their opponent in all three, and West Brom have only had more booking points than their opponents once in their opening four.
It’s fair to say we can’t expect a classic here, but I’d expect it to be a physical match and the type of game West Brom can come out on top of. However, Burnley will be itching to get their first points on the board.