Sunday, February 25, 2024

Premier League Odds, Picks & Previews: Our 4 Best Bets, Featuring Chelsea vs Everton

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It’s a light Premier League slate this weekend with the FA Cup in action, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t any value on the board.

BJ Cunningham and Anthony Dabbundo are here to take you through the upcoming matches and offer up their best bets on the slate.

Cunningham and Dabbundo, who are part of the Wondergoal podcast crew, will be guiding you on the weekend Premier League fixtures and delivering their favorite picks along the way. They’ll also provide their individual model projections for the games.

If you’d like to see picks from Cunningham and Dabbundo during the season for all UCL action and all five European leagues, follow them in the Action Network App.


Cunningham’s Model Projections


Dabbundo’s Model Projections

Brentford vs Leicester City

Brentford Odds -110
Leicester Odds +275
Draw +260
Over/Under 2.5 (-125 / +100)
Day | Time Saturday | 10 a.m. ET
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Odds via bet365. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

Cunningham: This is a great spot for Brentford coming off that 1-0 loss to Everton, where they were very undeserving to lose as they won the xG battle 2-1. They then went on and beat Southampton on the road 2-0 and created 1.9 xG. It was the fifth time in the last six matches that Brentford have created over 1.5 xG with 11.2 overall in those six matches. 

This is a perfect matchup for how Brentford want to play. Leicester are a really good possession-based team and they are very good at playing through pressure. The Foxes are in the top half of the Premier League in average possession and third in offensive PPDA, but that isn’t really going to matter against Brentford who are not going to provide much resistance and let Leicester have the ball.

Leicester did put in a good performance at home despite losing to Chelsea last weekend. The Foxes created over 2 xG and ended up winning the xG battle.

However, their defense has been really bad this season and a main reason for that is their inability to defend set pieces. The Foxes are 17th in xG allowed per set piece, which is a nightmare matchup against Brentford, who are the most efficient set piece offense in the Premier League.

Give me the Bees at anything -105 or better.

Pick: Brentford ML (-105 or better)

Southampton vs Tottenham

Southampton Odds +375
Tottenham Odds -134
Draw +260
Over/Under 2.5 (+100 / -125)
Day | Time Saturday | 10 a.m. ET
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Odds via bet365. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

Cunningham: Southampton have run ridiculously cold defensively this season, and a lot of it comes down to bad goalkeeping play. The Saints have allowed 36 goals off 30.6 xG and their goalkeeper Gavin Bazunu had a -10.7 post shot xG +/-.

Unless he is the worst goalkeeper in Premier League history, he is bound to improve and regress towards the mean. Selles has Southampton back to the patented 4-4-2 that they played for so many years under Ralph Hasenhüttl, which has given them more structure and produced some good results, like wins over Chelsea and Leicester.

The problems that have existed for Southampton are because of their attack. They do not have a good striking duo that can finish at a high rate.

Southampton are only averaging 0.88 npxG per 90 minutes and have created just 14 big scoring chances on the season.

Tottenham’s performances away from home as of late have been dreadful. Their last win came against Fulham on January 23rd and overall for the season they have a -1.6 xGD on the road.

The problems that exist for Spurs exist in their offense. They’re not a possession-based side and they want to play very direct under Antonio Conte, but they’ve struggled to build up that attack from the back. Since we returned from the World Cup break, Tottenham are averaging just 1.24 xG per match, good for ninth-best in the Premier League.

I like this spot for Southampton, who are desperate for points to get out of the bottom of the table.

Pick: Southampton +0.5 (+105 or better)

Chelsea vs Everton

Chelsea Odds -188
Everton Odds +600
Draw +300
Over/Under 2.5 (+110 / -138)
Day | Time Saturday | 1:30 p.m. ET
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Odds via bet365. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

Dabbundo: Since hiring Sean Dyche, Everton have played 630 minutes of Premier League soccer and produced 1.4 xG per 90 minutes. That attacking production actually ranks in the top half of the league, even though the finishing has been terrible and the Toffees have just five goals to show for his tenure.

One notable difference from Dyche’s era at Burnley is that Everton aren’t merely sitting deep and protecting the penalty area defensively. His Everton side has the fourth-worst defense in the PL since he was hired, based on xG allowed.

The market has Everton as a very low event team based on this price with the total sitting below 2.5 against Chelsea. The numbers suggest this matchup at Stamford Bridge on Saturday could be more back and forth. My projections have this game just over 2.5 goals and I’d bet anything plus money on over 2.5 goals.

Chelsea are due for more positive attacking regression in the form of finishing variance. They’ve struggled to consistently score goals under Graham Potter despite clear signs of improved attacking process in the last month.

Since the World Cup break, Chelsea matches have averaged 2.43 xG per 90, but there have only been 1.6 goals per match. Kai Havertz and Joao Felix are putting up excellent shot numbers but the finishing variance has cost them a half dozen goals. The posts and crossbar haven’t been Chelsea’s friend, but the goals are coming if they keep creating chances.

Pick: Over 2.5 goals (+110 via FanDuel)

Arsenal vs Crystal Palace

Arsenal Odds -400
Crystal Palace Odds +1100
Draw +475
Over/Under 2.5 (-138 / +110)
Day | Time Sunday | 10 a.m. ET
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Odds via bet365. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

Dabbundo: The shortened Premier League weekend schedule concludes on Sunday, as Crystal Palace visit Arsenal in a London derby. Palace made a shock decision to sack manager Patrick Vieira on Friday after a poor run of results.

The Eagles have struggled for goals all season long, but that comes down more to a lack of attacking quality than the manager’s tactics and man management. The Eagles have also faced the toughest schedule of opposing fixtures in the PL. 

Palace have now played eight different teams twice in the league, and all eight of them are in the top 11 in my Premier League power ratings. Once the Eagles play Arsenal, it will be nine matches against the top 11 twice and no second match against any of the bottom nine sides. The attack has been poor, but it’s an ideal time and spot to buy low on them against Arsenal’s overvalued defense. 

We’ve seen time and time again in the Premier League that teams often get a bounce out of firing an old manager, especially in the immediate short term. Palace showed real signs of attacking life in the 1-0 loss at Brighton on Wednesday when the Eagles produced more than 1 xG.

Just two weeks ago, Bournemouth were +105 to score at the Emirates. Even though the Cherries came into that match in better form than Palace do here, there’s not this big of a gap in the true attacking talent and output of both teams for Palace to now be +120 to score themselves.

You’re buying at the absolute floor and selling high on an Arsenal defense that has allowed 13 xG in irs last 10 matches across all competitions. The Gunners’ attack is still firing at elite production levels, but the defense has dropped and Palace can take advantage. I’d bet both teams to score at +130 or better.

Pick: Both Teams to Score (+140 via FanDuel)

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