Burnley v Crystal Palace
Monday November 23, 17:00
Live on Sky Sports
Clarets are going to need more goals
It's early days yet in the context of the season but you already get the feeling that Burnley's style of football may start to be looking a bit dated. Their position in the table certainly suggests that; they're down in 19th.
There's nothing wrong with looking to keep things tight, play a bit more direct and try to be tough and physical but if that's your approach, you're going to at least have to try and score a goal a game.
They have just three in seven, making them the lowest-scorers in the division bar none. Opta add to that that they're also the team with the lowest number of shots on target in the division.
The Chris Wood/Ashley Barnes partnership has worked well for years now but they're not getting any younger and it would be good to have a quality option in the squad who can offer something a bit different. Something to think about going into the transfer window in January but as ever, proven goalscorers are hard to come by.
Decent attacking options for Palace at last
It's been a good start to the season for Palace, who are eighth with 13 points from eight matches.
In a way they're a more successful version of Burnley. They also like to keep things tight but the difference is they've edged the low-scoring games: they've won games by 1-0 and 2-1 already.
A big boost to their campaign has been the form of Wilfried Zaha. Whether as the main striker or in his usual position on the wing, he's been excellent, already scoring more goals (5) than he did in the whole of last season, to go with two assists.
They also have Christian Benteke, Jordan Ayew and Michi Batshuayi all available, the first time that's happened in a while. But Benteke seems to be out of favour so it's likely to be Ayew leading the line with promising youngster Eberechi Eze playing on the opposite flank to Zaha to provide a pretty decent front three. Not something we've often been able to say about the Eagles.
Burnley are 2.789/5 to win and you'll have a hard time trying to justify that. Again, you're not going to win many games when you're scoring at around a goal every three games! The head-to-head record between the two when played in Burnley has been a mixed one with Sean Dyche's men winning the last two but Palace winning the two before that.
Palace have had just the one draw for the season and Burnley two and as we've seen already, none of the last four here between these two have ended in a stalemate so those stats suggest that we're unlikely to have one at 3.211/5.
If I had to bet on this market, it would be on the visitors at 3.02/1 but we can do better than that.
I always think that no Premier League match should have over 2.5 goals at 2.56/4 or bigger. Yes, we've already discussed that Burnley don't score many but no too matches are the same and besides, two of the last four between them had at least three goals so it's not like goals have been at a premium over the past few seasons in this fixture.
The case for going overs is strengthened by the fact that three of Palace's away games this season have had at least three goals but weakened by the fact that it's just one in three for Burnley at home, a cause not helped by the fact that the Clarets are yet to score on their own patch.
So, if in doubt, go 'overs'.
One Opta stat that caught my attention is how good Palace have been out of the blocks. Their eight first-half goals makes them the fourth-ranked team for first-half goals, with only Liverpool, Southampton and Spurs netting more (10).
Given that strong record of scoring early and the fact that Burnley have conceded five at home in three games, in two of those conceding in the first half, and you can see why over 0.5 goals on the away team over/under first-half goals market at 6/4 makes plenty of appeal.
Eagles don't lose and we get at least three goals
If like me you can't see Palace losing and think the over 2.5 goals price is decent, you can take Palace/Draw on the Double Chance market at 4/9 and the 7/5 on over 2.5 goals and you get 4.01 as a Same-Game Multi-bet, a decent bet indeed.