Score draw in basement battle
Norwich vs Watford
Norwich come into this game in wretched form, losing five of their last six games, including an extremely poor performance at Brighton last time out (xG: BHA 3.09 - 0.48 NOR). They rank as the worst team in the league on expected goals, and the worst defensive team (2.38 xGA per game), so really are performing like a relegation team. Watford remain winless after a 2-1 defeat against Chelsea, but their underlying process is much better than Norwich's this season, meaning I'm more optimistic about the Hornet's chances of survival come the end of the season. Infogol can't split the two teams in this game, giving both a 37% chance of winning, so fence sitting is the way I'm playing this one, with a 58% chance of BTTS - 1-1.
Back the @ 1-1 8.07/1
Another Chelsea win
Chelsea vs Crystal Palace
Chelsea made it five straight Premier League wins with a deserved 2-1 win over Watford last weekend, as Frank Lampard's side continue to impress. They sit fourth in Infogol's xG table, and have a strong attacking process (2.01 xGF), but question marks still remain defensively (1.36 xGA per game). Crystal Palace were extremely poor in their 2-0 defeat to Leicester, with many expecting a little bit more from Roy Hodgson's side. They are flattered by their current league position, as according to expected goals they have been the fifth worst team. They will likely score here though, and Infogol expects goals (53% O2.5, 52% BTTS) in a Chelsea win (56%) - 3-1.
Back the 3-1 @ 11.521/2
Burnley to heap more misery on Hammers
Burnley vs West Ham
Burnley were extremely disappointing at Sheffield United last weekend, rightly losing 3-0, but overall they have been impressive this season. They rank as the 9th best team on xG, with a solid process (1.34 xGF, 1.35 xGA per game) - much better than their opponents here. West Ham were also beaten last weekend, as they went down 3-2 at home to Newcastle in what was another poor defensive display (xG: WHU 1.95 - 2.29 NEW). They rank as the third worst defensive team in the league this season, allowing over 2 xGA per game, so have huge issues heading into this game. Infogol makes Burnley 47% favourites to win here, with a high-scoring game likely (61% BTTS, 60% O2.5) involving this porous Hammers defence - 2-1.
Back the @ 2-1 9.417/2
Cherries to pick another win
Newcastle vs Bournemouth
Newcastle caused a bit of an upset last weekend, as they beat West Ham away from home, but the most surprising factor was that they managed to score three times in what was their best attacking display of the season. Bournemouth continue to play a more conservative style, and picked up an impressive 1-0 win over Manchester United, another game in which they looked solid defensively. They have been involved in just two goals in their last four games, keeping three clean-sheets in the process, and I don't see why this game won't be similar. Infogol calculates a 40% chance that this new defensive-minded Bournemouth side will get another win - 0-1.
Back the @ 0-1 10.09/1
Silva to edge Hasenhüttl
Southampton vs Everton
A game between two struggling sides takes place at St Mary's, will the losing manager be sacked? The scoreline at the Etihad last weekend flattered Southampton hugely, as they again allowed a host of scoring chances (xG: MCI 3.92 - 0.76 SOU). They are all over the place defensively, allowing an average of 1.96 xGA per game, which doesn't bode well for the rest of the season. Everton scored late to earn a point at home to Spurs, and that was the least they deserved. The Toffees have been one of the most unfortunate teams this season, as although they sit 17th in the table, they rate as the 5th best team based on xG. Marco Silva's side have a decent process (1.57 xGF, 1.17 xGA per game), and it is only a matter of time before results improve. Infogol suggests the team with the better process (Everton) will prevail in this game (45%), with goals highly likely (58% BTTS, 56% O2.5) - 1-2.
Back the @ 1-2 10.09/1
Narrow Tottenham win
Tottenham vs Sheffield United
Spurs away woes continued last weekend with a 1-1 draw at Everton, another game in which they struggled to create good scoring opportunities (xG: EVE 1.10 - 0.53 TOT). Their process this season has been extremely poor by their high-standards (1.20 xGF, 1.60 xGA per game), as they sit 15th in Infogol's xG table. Sheffield United were extremely impressive against Burnley weekend, but on the whole this season they are slightly fortunate to be so high in the table. They remain unbeaten on the road this season, with one win and five draws, but their process away from home has been poor (1.08 xGF, 1.94 xGA per game). The Blades won't make things easy for Spurs, but Tottenham are expected to prevail here (61%) in a tight game (52% BTTS 'no') - 1-0.
Back the @ 1-0 7.87/1
Foxes to pile the pressure on Emery
Leicester vs Arsenal
Leicester come into this game on the back of a very comfortable 2-0 win over Crystal Palace at the weekend, meaning they enter the gameweek 3rd in the table and with a six-point lead over fifth placed Arsenal. Their process is impressive (1.46 xGF, 1.09 xGA per game), and much better than Arsenal's. Unai Emery has come in for even more criticism of late following his sides 1-1 draw with Wolves, another game in which they were second best on xG. Their underlying process is shocking for a club with the quality of players they have (1.52 xGF, 1.66 xGA per game), and unless something drastically changes, they will not make the top four this season. Leicester are strong favourites for the game in Infogol's eyes (49%), with a high-scoring game likely involving this poor Arsenal defence (52% O2.5, 55% BTTS) - 1-2.
Back the @ 2-1 9.617/2
Goals at Old Trafford
Manchester United vs Brighton
Manchester United were poor at Bournemouth on Saturday, but can be slightly forgiven after a tough schedule meant that they played Chelsea on the Wednesday before. They still rate as one of the better teams in the league on xG, with a decent process, and they do have the firepower to hurt any team. Brighton have been hugely impressive this season, and were again last weekend at home to Norwich, another game in which they created a host of chances (xG: BHA 3.09 - 0.48 NOR). They rank 7th in our xG table, and pose a serious threat to United. Infogol thinks United will get another much needed win (61%) in a high-scoring game (58% O2.5) - 3-1.
Back the @ 3-1 13.5
Wolves to edge local rivalry
Wolves vs Aston Villa
Wolves were impressive at Arsenal last weekend, being unfortunate not to get all three points according to expected (xG: ARS 1.01 - 1.84 WOL). They are beginning to get close to their levels of last season in terms of process, so should be feared moving forward. Aston Villa were rightly beaten by Liverpool last weekend, despite it being a late winner that beat them (xG: AST 0.70 - 2.74 LIV). They rank as only the 18th best team in the league based on xG, with a really poor defensive process (2.14 xGA per game), something they have to improve. Infogol thinks Wolves will win this one (60%), and likely without conceding (51% BTTS 'no') in a tight game - 2-0.
Back the @ 2-0 9.617/2
Honors even at Anfield
Liverpool vs Manchester City
The biggest clash of the Premier League season so far, as the two best teams in the land do battle in a game that will more likely have a huge say in the title race. Liverpool have been exceptional this season, dropping just two points in 11 games, though they sit second in Infogol's xG table behind, you guessed it, Manchester City. Jürgen Klopp's side have a stellar process (2.16 xGF, 1.06 xGA per game), and will likely cause City problems, just like City will cause Liverpool. Pep Guardiola's side have been exceptional in terms of process (3.29 xGF, 1.20 xGA per game), especially in attack, but question marks remain defensively. Infogol calculates that the winner of this game will see their chances of winning the title increase by a big margin (LIV win - 67%, MCI win - 60%), but a draw would be better result for the Reds given they are already six points clear (draw; LIV 53%, MCI 46%). I'm landing on the draw in this match, with the Infogol model extremely tight in terms of picking a winner. There is a 61% chance of BTTS, but the model can see this game being a tight, low-scoring on just like at Anfield last season - 1-1.
Back the @ 1-1 8.27/1
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