Leicester v Tottenham: Leicester – 9/5
Leicester saw their unbeaten start to the season come to an end at Old Trafford, and while they struggled to impose themselves in attack at Old Trafford, defensively they were impressive once again.
While they managed just 0.57 xGF in that game, they did concede only 0.39 non-penalty xGA, and continue to impress defensively under Brendan Rodgers, allowing an average of just 0.66 non-pen xGA per game.
There are still improvements needed in attack this season for the Foxes but have shown glimpses of what they are capable of, especially against Chelsea and Bournemouth. They need to deliver that level of performance on a regular basis, but there is no question that Leicester have the tools to hurt Tottenham in this game.
There were a lot of comments after Tottenham’s 4-0 win over Crystal Palace last weekend that ‘Spurs are back’, however, while the result looked impressive, it definitely papered over the cracks.
According to expected goals, Spurs were hugely flattered by the scoreline, as they mustered just 1.25 xGF against Palace, as they continue to struggle in attack, creating just 1.13 xGF per game in their last four league matches, with their best-attacking display coming in the season opener against Aston Villa (xG: TOT 2.93 – 0.64 AST).
Not only are they having issues in creating good chances, defensively they look vulnerable, allowing an average of 1.59 xGA per game. In games against fellow top sides – and Leicester fall into that bracket – they have looked even worst (3.39 xGA @ Man City, 2.36 xGA @ Arsenal).
Spurs really need to step up their game in this match if they are to get something, and if they continue performing the way we have seen so far this season, Mauricio Pochettino’s side will again struggle.
Surprisingly to Infogol, Spurs are favourites to win this game with the model suggesting it should be Leicester that are favourites, so the 9/5 on offer represents great value.
Everton v Sheffield United: Everton to win – 8/13
Everton just keep on being Everton. The inconsistent performances and results continue for Marco Silva’s side following a 3-1 defeat at Bournemouth, though they were unfortunate to lose in what was an even game.
The Toffees have shown us some good stuff so far this season, but also some bad, though rank as the eighth-best team in the league so far this season according to expected goals – so improvements have been minimal so far.
They have been a threat in attack, averaging 1.37 xGF per game, but could do with creating more, especially after the investment they have made in attacking areas over the last few years – bringing in the likes of Moise Kean, Richarlison, Bernard, Alex Iwobi and Gylfi Sigurðsson.
Everton will be looking to make Goodison Park a fortress this season, and have started well. They’ve won both of their home games and are expected to make it three from three here.
Sheffield United have been impressive so far this season, and although they suffered a 1-0 defeat against Southampton last weekend, the Blades created the better of the chances. They deserved a draw at the very least when you look at the stats (xG: SHU 2.10 – 1.57 SOU).
While Chris Wilder’s side have created good chances in matches so far this season, defensively they haven’t been solid, allowing an average of 1.29 xGA per game in their five Premier League matches.
Make no mistake about it, this is a tough game for Everton, with Sheffield United being a dangerous opponent – as Chelsea found out. But the Toffees are expected to up their game here, and get the three points, with Infogol analysis suggesting there is value in backing the Toffees at 8/13.
Newcastle v Brighton: Newcastle to win – 7/5
Newcastle were well beaten by Liverpool last weekend, as was to be expected, but there have been plenty of positives to take from their opening five games ahead of what is a winnable game for them.
Steve Bruce’s side have a tough schedule to start the season, playing all of Arsenal, Tottenham and Liverpool, with games against Norwich and Watford sandwiched in between, and a points haul of four looks like a decent return from those fixtures.
The most impressive aspect of their performances (before the Liverpool game anyway was their defensive process, as they conceded an average of just 1.38 xGA per game prior to the game at Anfield.
Newcastle need to improve in attack though, and although they have averaged just 0.80 xGF per game this season. In the games against Norwich and Watford – sides more of Newcastle’s calibre – they generated more than 1.00 xGF, so are capable of causing Brighton problems here.
Brighton have impressed so far under Graham Potter, and their performances warrant more points than the five they have managed so far. You can see a lack of clinical finishing undoubtedly frustrating Potter and his team.
The Seagulls have netted 5 times from chances equating to 7.4 xGF, so are generating an average of 1.48 xGF per game. But, they are scoring an average of 1 goal per game, and while the process of chance creating is strong, the low conversion rate is a worry.
There are a few defensive weaknesses that have been exposed this season, with Brighton allowing 1.16 xGA per game. Potter doesn’t seem set on his best team just yet, making plenty of changes from game to game, meaning his side are rarely settled.
While The Seagulls have been the more impressive of the two sides so far this campaign according to expected goals, Newcastle have had the tougher schedule and performed fairly well themselves.
Infogol suggests there is a small amount of value in backing the home side to get the win here at 7/5.
Leicester to beat Tottenham – 9/5
Everton to beat Sheffield United – 8/13
Newcastle to beat Brighton – 7/5
* All odds correct at time of posting.