Sporting Life's Jake Osgathorpe uses Infogol's expected goals (xG) model to predict the likely winners and scorelines of each match of an eight game slate of Premier League action...
"Manchester United are unbeaten in 11 Premier League games, winning their last five, as they have closed the gap on Manchester City. Defensively they have improved, and they are capable of exploding in attack, but they head to Elland Road unbeaten in 23 away league games."
Gunners to get win
Arsenal v Everton
While Arsenal may have one eye on their upcoming Europa League semi-final, their performances in recent week lead me to believe that they can get a win here. While they were held by Fulham, the Gunners created more than enough chances to deserve the win (xG: ARS 2.9 - 0.9 FUL), and limited their visitors to just 0.1 non-pen xG.
Everton are winless in five league games, and their European hopes are hanging by a thread as a result. The Toffees rank 13th in Infogol's xG table, so have been fortunate to collect so many points this season, and while their away form has been good, they possess a negative xG process when travelling (1.3 xGF, 1.5 xGA pg).
Arsenal are taken to win here (52%), with both teams fancied to hit the net (52%), as Everton's top six chances fade further - 2-1.
Reds to get back on track
Liverpool v Newcastle
Liverpool missed the opportunity to temporarily move into the top four on Monday, letting a 1-0 lead slip against Leeds, and deservedly so (xG: LEE 2.8 - 1.5 LIV). They ended their Anfield hoodoo with a win over Aston Villa a few weeks back, and on the whole have performed will this season at home based on xG (1.9 xGF, 1.3 xGA pg).
Newcastle have surged clear of the relegation zone thanks to back-to-back wins, beating Burnley and West Ham. Steve Bruce's side have scored two or more in their last three, and over that albeit short stretch, they have averaged 2.7 xGF per game, so are playing more and more on the front foot.
The Reds are taken to win though (67%), with Champions League qualification now their sole focus, though Newcastle have shown enough of late to suggest that they can score against this vulnerable Liverpool defence, so BTTS (55%) and Over 2.5 Goals (64%) look likely - 2-1.
Chelsea to take hold of top 4 spot
West Ham v Chelsea
West Ham were beaten by Newcastle last weekend in another sensationally entertaining game involving the Hammers. It was the fourth straight game in which they conceded two or more goals, but the fourth straight in which they scored two or more. David Moyes's team have been strong at home all season long, averaging 1.6 xGF and 1.3 xGA per game, but injuries are piling up.
Chelsea moved above West Ham with a point at home to Brighton on Tuesday, a dull encounter that was overshadowed by the goings on off the pitch and outside the ground. While Thomas Tuchel's team have generally been a low-scoring team since his arrival, their last away game saw them explode on attack, scoring four times and racking up 3.4 xG.
In what is a huge game in the race for Champions League qualification, Chelsea are fancied to get the win (49%). West Ham's recent defensive issues should again be exploited here, and this game is likely to be high-scoring as a result - 1-2.
Seagulls to pull further clear
Sheffield United v Brighton
Sheffield United's miserable season continued with defeat at Wolves last weekend, another game in which they struggled to make a mark offensively. That was their fifth straight league loss, and it ultimately meant that their relegation was confirmed.
Brighton moved further clear of the relegation zone on Tuesday with a goalless draw against Chelsea, with the Seagulls now seven points clear of Fulham with a game in hand. Graham Potter's side have impressed defensively this season, with only Manchester City (0.8 xGA pg) and Chelsea (0.9) boasting better underlying numbers on defence than Brighton (1.1).
Their issues have been in attack this term, and in particular converting chances, but they should do enough to squeeze a win here (54%) in a low-scoring game (57% U2.5) - 0-1.
Another 1-0 for Wolves
Wolves v Burnley
Wolves have won two straight games by a 1-0 scoreline against two teams in the bottom three of the league. This weekend they play the team fourth bottom of the table, and are improving defensively as the season comes to it's close, allowing less than 1.0 xGA in four of their last five.
Burnley are just six points above Fulham with a game in hand, mainly thanks to a run of three successive defeats. Defensively, they have been incredibly vulnerable of late, allowing 2.1 xGA per game over their last eight.
In attack, the Clarets have averaged 1.3 xGF per game in that time, and will likely need to be better than that average here to get a result, with Wolves taken (47%) to edge a close game (56% U2.5) - 1-0.
Man Utd to extend away run
Leeds v Manchester United
Leeds appear to be finishing the season with a flourish, having collected 11 points from a possible 15 from a run of games including Chelsea, Manchester City and Liverpool. They created by far the better chances against Jurgen Klopp's side on Monday night (xG: LEE 2.8 - 1.5 LIV), again showing that they can go toe-to-toe with the very best.
Manchester United are unbeaten in 11 Premier League games, winning their last five, as they have closed the gap on Manchester City. Defensively they have improved, and they are capable of exploding in attack, but they head to Elland Road unbeaten in 23 away league games.
When these sides met earlier in the season, we saw a 6-2 thriller in which Man Utd racked up 4.2 xGF, picking apart Leeds' high press. Something similar could occur here, but Leeds have seen their scorelines calm down of late, so a narrow away win (52%) is likely - 1-2.
Villa to do double over WBA
Aston Villa v West Brom
Aston Villa have struggled offensively ever since Jack Grealish was ruled out through injury, but have remained fairly solid defensively. At Villa Park, they boast a very strong xG process (1.8 xGF, 1.3 xGA pg), and recently dispatched another relegation threatened team Fulham.
West Brom have given themselves hope of survival, but remain desperate for wins. Sam Allardyce has improved the Baggies, though it has taken longer than he would have liked, meaning they are in kitchen sink territory, which is making them vulnerable defensively.
Dean Smith's side are taken to edge to a win (54%), though the model thinks Over 2.5 Goals is more likely than not (51%) - 2-1.
Foxes to win comfortably
Leicester v Crystal Palace
Leicester have some big football matches from now until the end of the season, but these next few are crucial, as they finish the campaign with matches against Manchester United, Chelsea and Tottenham. Home form has been an issue for them, but they do create more and better chances than they allow based on xG (1.6 xGF, 1.4 xGA pg).
Crystal Palace got thumped in their last outing, going down 4-1 to Chelsea, as their poor displays continued. Based on expected points, Palace sit third bottom of Infogol's xG table, while only Sheffield United have posted worst attacking xG numbers than Roy Hodgson's side (0.9 xGF pg).
Away from home, they rank as the second worst team in the Premier League (1.0 xGF, 2.0 xGA pg), so a home win looks likely (67%), though BTTS 'no' is favoured (56%) - 2-0.