Monday, 8pm, Sky Sports Main Event
Monday night football takes us to the King Power stadium, as Leicester welcome League cup runners-up Aston Villa in a game that has very different consequences for both sides.
Leicester will certainly not be resting on their laurels anymore in regards to a top four finish after Chelsea and Man United both recorded impressive wins this weekend, whilst Villa will look to seize on the opportunity to haul themselves out of the relegation zone following defeats for the three teams immediately above them in the table.
We’re very much at the business end of the season now and with such small margins in the race for Champions League spots and the fight to stay in the Premier League, every game is crucial and this is certainly no exception.
I mentioned in last week’s piece on Norwich v Leicester how Leicester’s form has deteriorated alarmingly, and while it may have surprised some to see them fall to lowly Norwich, it didn’t catch us by surprise. Leicester have now won just one of their last seven Premier League encounters, and that came at home to lowly West Ham.
Players and fans alike will no doubt be glancing over their shoulders in the Premier League table as a result. Villa’s form doesn’t exactly catch the eye either, having lost three on the bounce, which makes this game somewhat tricky to unravel, but we’ll give it a go…
A common theme remains in Villa games – they simply cannot defend. They are comfortably bottom of the table on shots conceded per game, and have managed to keep just one clean sheet in their last 14 Premier League ties, that coming at home to Norwich who are comfortably bottom of the table when it comes to away goals scored.
They’ve conceded first in five of their last six games in the league, so Leicester to score the first goal (4/11) looks a no-brainer to kick off a Same Game Multi that will build a Cheltenham fund for the week ahead.
Prior to this weekend’s games, only Newcastle had conceded more goals on the road than Villa. They’re conceding on average two goals per game, and whilst Leicester have been struggling in front of goal somewhat lately, surely Jamie Vardy has got to feature and get them firing again. With that in mind, I really like the look of Over 2.5 Goals (1/2). While these two selections are quite short, they will combine nicely with a couple more selections thrown in.
I’m somewhat reluctant to include Jamie Vardy given he is not guaranteed to start, but if he does, adding a couple of selections involving him is a must. He is still fighting it out at the top of the goalscoring charts and will be very determined to play here and add to his tally.
For that reason, I fancy him to be shooting at all opportunities, of which he should be given plenty against a woeful Villa defence (see my previous comment on their shots conceded per game). Vardy to score anytime is a rather paltry looking 4/6, combining that with the above along with Vardy to have 2 or more shots on target gives us a 3/1 SGM that’s worth a few quid. Should Vardy not start, replacing him with Iheanacho in the same markets would be worthwhile at just under 4/1.
So that is…
Leicester to score first, Over 2.5 Goals, Jamie Vardy to score and Jamie Vardy 2+ Shots on Target – or replace Vardy with Iheanacho should he not start. Plain and simple Cheltenham fund banker!
*All odds correct at time of publication