Last week made it four out of four profitable weeks in a row for this column, albeit at the modest sum of +0.99 units for the weekend. In total we now stand at exactly +20.0 units for this season’s Premier League expert picks utilizing Expected Goals.
We’ll try to build on that sum in Gameweek 9. What matters most here is the process, not the results, and why we use xG data to look for inefficiencies in the market.
For a further explanation of how we use Expected Goals (xG) to identify the value for these Premier League expert picks, check out our “What is xG?” page or pick up a copy of The Expected Goals Philosophy.
I have bet one unit on each of the following matches. If you like one of the bets below, click on the odds to bet now.
Game of the Week: Manchester United vs. Liverpool Odds
Sunday, October 24 11:30a ET
The feature game this weekend comes from Old Trafford, when Manchester United host Liverpool.
Pressure is mounting on Man Utd manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer after a below par start to the season. They have been performing poorly on xG since the beginning of the campaign, and their results have recently begun to catch up on them.
I tipped them to lose to Aston Villa and Everton, and I’ll be doing so again here as they face a rampant Liverpool. Jurgen Klopp’s outfit will be the first ‘big 6’ team that Man Utd have faced this season, and I expect the Reds to dominate proceedings.
Liverpool have been blistering in recent weeks, accumulating more xG (22.05) than anyone else in the division since the start of the season. They also have the best xG difference of any team (+13.68). As such, I’ll be backing Liverpool to win at odds of 43.5%.
Best Liverpool Odds In Your State
Arsenal vs. Aston Villa Odds
Friday, October 22 3:00p ET
Arsenal haven’t started the season particularly well, losing on xG five times this campaign already. Their problems seem to stem from their inability to create chances – a trend that recurred throughout last season and into the start of this campaign.
At the time of publish, the Gunners have an xG difference of -5.51, before a Monday match with Crystal Palace. Aston Villa’s xG difference is slightly less negative (-1.69), despite already facing Chelsea, Man Utd and Tottenham so far.
I expect a fairly tight game of football, so are happy to stake one unit on an Aston Villa win at odds of 23.3%.
Best Aston Villa Odds In Your State
Crystal Palace vs. Newcastle Odds
Saturday, October 23 10:00a ET
Newcastle make the journey down south to play Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park on Saturday afternoon, being priced at just 26.3% to take home all three points.
In a battle between two of the clubs you’d expect to end the season towards the bottom of the table, I’m surprised to see the bookmakers make Crystal Palace such comfortable favorites.
Each of the hosts’ matches this campaign have had less than 1.00 xG between the two sides, apart from their defeat of Spurs and their defeat by Liverpool.
Newcastle have shown signs of improvement in recent weeks, particularly in their domineering display over Watford three games ago.
I expect this to be another close game, and as such there is value in staking one unit on Newcastle to emerge victorious.
Best Newcastle Odds In Your State
Brighton vs. Manchester City Odds
Saturday, October 23 12:30p ET
Whilst I believe Man City should win this match comfortably, I still think Brighton are undervalued at a price of 12.2%.
Manchester City have been an odd team this season. In years gone by, they have absolutely blown teams away week-in-week out.
This season, they have shown glimpses of their past selves in massive wins against Norwich, Arsenal and Leicester – all of which saw them put accumulate in excess of 2.00 xG more than their opponents.
However, they have put in the occasional less good performance. Last weekend, Burnley managed to make things rather uncomfortable for the Citizens at times, creating 0.93 xG in total – that’s quite a lot for Man City to concede against one of the worst teams in the league. The week prior, they lost to Liverpool on xG.
Brighton have been known to cause problems for big teams. Indeed, the Seagulls won this fixture back in May. Whilst they’re obviously unlikely to get anything from the game, I believe the price 12.2% offers value to the bettor.