THE STRIKER: previews Sunday’s final day of the Premier League season. All matches kick off at 4pm and all previewed with extended stats and a recommended BETDAQ bet.
The Striker is a professional football punter who focused solely on football in the UK. He has over ten years of experience using exchanges and he’s been a full-time professional punter for more than five years. UK football is his edge and he sticks to it!
Thankfully The Striker has agreed to share his best bets with BETDAQ Tips! He will use a staking system between one and five points to give readers a clue as to how confident he is with each individual bet. He uses his own analysis to price up matches and loves advanced stats like xG, goal stats and current form.
ARSENAL V BRIGHTON
4pm It’s the Final Day of the Premier League 2020/21 season and it promises to be an epic day on BETDAQ Betting Exchange! While the title and relegation has already been decided, we still have plenty of drama to unfold in the race for European spots. With Manchester City and Leicester winning the League Cup and FA Cup, that brings a lot of teams into the mix for a Europa League spot. Despite being very poor this season, Arsenal are one of those teams – even if they start the day in ninth! Spurs and Everton are just one point ahead of them, and they both have tricky fixtures today – they are away to Leicester and Man City. After some really embarrassing results at times this season, it’s likely Arsenal will finish in seventh and sneaky into the Europa League thanks to the domestic Cup winners. That’s probably the best result they are hope for these days, as they no longer look like a Top Six side.
In true Arsenal fashion however, they can just as easily lose today against a very good Brighton side. Brighton start the day in 16th and will be hoping to move up the table a little, but they have really played better than their league position suggests. At times this season the xG table had them getting Champions League football! They need to buy a striker in the summer, because they have played well for a few years now and haven’t been getting results – they need a goal scorer. Brighton managed to beat Man City midweek, and they weren’t lucky either. Arsenal can outclass Brighton if Brighton give them time and space, but I still feel Arsenal are too short at 1.65. Brighton will make this game closer than the odds on Arsenal suggest.
The Striker Says:
Two points lay (liability) Arsenal to beat Brighton at 1.65 with BETDAQ Betting Exchange
You can view all markets here -> http://bit.ly/BDQarsbha
● Arsenal are looking to complete their first league double over Brighton since the 1980-81 campaign. Indeed, the Gunners have won just two of their seven meetings with Brighton since the Seagulls were promoted to the Premier League (D2 L3).
● Brighton won this exact fixture 2-1 last season, their first ever top-flight away win against Arsenal (D2 L4).
● Arsenal haven’t lost their final league game of the season since 2004-05 (1-2 vs Birmingham), and have won each of their last nine games to end a Premier League campaign.
● When finishing a Premier League season at home, Arsenal have won each of their last 11 matches, with their last defeat coming in 1992-93 at the hands of Tottenham (1-3).
● Brighton have won their final league game in just one of the last six campaigns (D3 L2), though this did come at Burnley last season (2-1).
● Arsenal have taken just 25 points from their 18 Premier League home games this season (W7 D4 L7). If they fail to win here, it will be their lowest ever home points total in a Premier League campaign (currently 27 in 1994-95), while they last won fewer across a single campaign in 1912-13 (11).
● Arsenal have won each of their last four Premier League games, last winning more consecutively in October 2018 under Unai Emery (a run of 7).
● Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has scored in the final Premier League game in each of the last three campaigns. The last Arsenal player to score in their last league match in four consecutive campaigns was Alan Smith between 1988-89 and 1991-92.
● Nicolas Pépé is looking to score in three consecutive games in all competitions for the first time in his Arsenal career. Only Alexandre Lacazette (20) has been directly involved in more goals for the Gunners than the Ivorian this term (19 – 14 goals, 5 assists).
● No player has more Premier League assists in 2021 than Brighton’s Pascal Groß (6), while only Mesut Özil (54) and Leroy Sané (28) have more Premier League assists among German players than Groß (23) in the history of the competition.
ASTON VILLA V CHELSEA
4pm Next we have a massive game for Chelsea in the race for the Top Four. It’s a massive week for Chelsea ahead, as they have the Champions League Final to look forward to on Saturday night. They have the slight advantage of having a point more than Liverpool and Leicester going into the Final game, but that be much comfort. They recorded a massive 2-1 win over Leicester on Tuesday night and that has put them in pole position. They actually played very well – they created an xG of 3.08 and dominated the game. Villa bounced back to winning ways midweek against Spurs in a game they deserved to win and that stopped a run of games without a win. Perhaps because Jack Grealish is back – Villa look a totally different team with him in the side.
Chelsea would have loved to see a Villa side without Grealish, but with him trying to get as much time as possible to prove his fitness for Euro 2021 it’s highly likely he plays close to the full 90 minutes here. That makes Villa a much better side, and they were able to create an xG of 1.53 in a win over Spurs. Villa didn’t create much without Grealish, and that was their main issue. A top form Villa side might still not be able to handle Chelsea however, who have been playing excellent football lately. They were unlucky to lose the FA Cup Final and were really unlucky to lose against Arsenal prior to that – creating an xG of 2.08 in a 1-0 loss. I feel the 1.52 is fair value though, and I much prefer over 2.5 goals at 1.7. Villa should create more now and with Chelsea needing to win, we should see an open game.
The Striker Says:
Two points win Over 2.5 goals at 1.7 with BETDAQ Betting Exchange
You can view all markets here -> http://bit.ly/BDQavlchl
● Aston Villa have lost 10 of their last 12 Premier League meetings with Chelsea (W1 D1), though they did get a draw in the reverse fixture at Stamford Bridge this season.
● Chelsea have won their last three Premier League away games against Aston Villa, last winning four in a row at Villa Park between 1995 and 1999.
● Aston Villa haven’t won their final league game in any of the last nine campaigns, since beating Liverpool 1-0 in 2010-11. However, the Villans are unbeaten when facing Chelsea in their last game (W3 D1), most recently winning 3-1 at Stamford Bridge on the closing day of the 2001-02 season.
● Chelsea have lost their final league game in just one of the last nine campaigns (W6 D2), going down 0-3 at Newcastle in 2017-18.
● Aston Villa have won 15 Premier League matches this season, six more than they won last season (9). This is the biggest rise in victories in consecutive Premier League seasons for Villa since they won 11 in 1994-95 and then 18 in 1995-96.
● Chelsea are unbeaten in each of their eight away league games under Thomas Tuchel (W6 D2), conceding just four goals in total and never more than once in a match.
● Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud has scored in each of his last seven Premier League appearances against Aston Villa, netting nine goals in total. Only Robin van Persie has ever scored in eight consecutive games against an opponent in the competition (vs Stoke).
● Jorginho is Chelsea’s top league goalscorer this season with seven goals – all of them from the penalty spot. The last top-flight season in which the Blues had such a low scoring top goalscorer was in 1974-75 (Ian Hutchinson, 7).
● Ollie Watkins has scored 14 Premier League goals for Aston Villa this season – the last English player to score more in a single top-flight campaign for the Villans was David Platt in 1990-91 (19).
● All seven of Jorginho’s Premier League goals for Chelsea this season have been penalties – no player has scored more in a single campaign with 100% of them coming from the penalty spot (level with James Milner in 2016-17).
FULHAM V NEWCASTLE
4pm A couple of weeks ago, this would have been a massive six pointer in the relegation fight! As it is now, Fulham have ran out of steam and Newcastle have actually finished the season very strongly. This is one of the games today where I have a very strong opinion. For me Fulham are a Max Lay at 2.14. We successfully landed out first Max Lay when Fulham were a similar price against Burnley, and we can land another Max Lay here. Fulham have been pretty poor since they “caught up” with Newcastle – they bumped into some of the top sides and lost momentum. That’s what happens when you get so far behind, it’s so much work to catch up, and then so much work to actually get past – you usually end up coming up short because it’s hard to play well for that long when you aren’t a top side.
I feel the odds are all wrong here. Fulham’s xG figures have been poor for weeks, while you could argue that Newcastle have been playing their best football of the season. I’m not a huge fan of Newcastle, but the 2.14 on Fulham is very short – it has to be taken on. Newcastle’s recent xG figures have included games of 2.80, 3.49, 2.45 and 1.85. They created 2.45 against Man City – it seems they have changed tactics a little and attacked more, and it has certainly paid off. Before they beat Burnley and West Ham – they created an xG of 3.86 against Spurs in a game they were unlucky not to win. With Newcastle playing so well, I’m very happy to lay Fulham.
The Striker Says:
Five points lay (liability) Fulham to beat Newcastle at 2.14 with BETDAQ Betting Exchange
You can view all markets here -> http://bit.ly/BDQfulnew
● Fulham have won 12 Premier League games against Newcastle – no other side have they beaten more in the competition (level with Bolton).
● Newcastle won 4-0 away at Fulham on the final day of the 2018-19 Premier League campaign, ending a run of six consecutive league defeats at Craven Cottage. They’ve not won back-to-back away league games against Fulham since 2005.
● Fulham have won their final Premier League game in just one of the last seven campaigns (D2 L4), beating Swansea 3-0 in 2012-13.
● Newcastle have won their final league game of the season in five of the last six campaigns, though they did lose 3-1 against Liverpool on MD38 last season.
● Fulham have taken just two points from their last 27 available in the Premier League (W0 D2 L7), with these points coming courtesy of draws away at Arsenal and Manchester United.
● Fulham have lost each of their last five Premier League home games – in their league history, they’ve only lost more consecutively at home once before, losing seven in a row between November 1961 and February 1962.
● Since the start of April, only Liverpool (18) have scored more Premier League goals than Newcastle United (16) while only Sheffield United (3) have scored fewer than Fulham (4) in this time.
● Fulham have scored just nine goals in 18 home Premier League games this season – no team in top-flight history has ever scored fewer than 10 in a season, with Man City in 2006-07 and Huddersfield Town in 2018-19 (10 each) scoring the fewest.
● Newcastle striker Callum Wilson has scored three goals in three Premier League appearances against Fulham, including a brace on his only previous visit to Craven Cottage in October 2018.
● Newcastle’s Joe Willock has scored in each of his last six Premier League appearances, becoming the youngest ever player to achieve that feat. Only one player has scored in seven in a row for Newcastle – Alan Shearer between September and November 1996.
LEEDS V WEST BROM
4pm This game screams goals on paper, and it’s not a surprise to see 1.4 when you click into the over 2.5 goals market! That looks priced fairly, and I’d much rather back Both Teams To Score at around 1.6. West Brom have had a tough fixture list to finish the season, but they have managed to score in their last three games against West Ham, Liverpool and Arsenal. They found the net in draws and Wolves and Aston Villa prior to that and you know that Leeds like to play an end-to-end game too so they will get chances. The thing that puts me off Both Teams To Score, is I like the Leeds price more at 1.47. West Brom have been playing an open game since getting relegated, and Big Sam is off after this game too as he is leaving the club. I can’t see him putting XI men behind the ball here, and that can only suit Leeds.
Leeds have been fantastic this season, and start the day in tenth position. Finishing in the Top Ten would be a massive success for them, and they have played so well that they can aim for European football next season. If the top sides with the two domestic Cups, they can get into the Europa League in seventh, much like Arsenal might today. Leeds have generated xG figures of 2.15, 2.0 and 2.34 in their last three games and when West Brom are conceding 3.48 and 2.05 in their last two games, I can only see one winner here.
The Striker Says:
Three points win Leeds to beat West Brom at 1.47 with BETDAQ Betting Exchange
You can view all markets here -> http://bit.ly/BDQleewba
● After a run of three straight league defeats against West Brom, Leeds are unbeaten in four against the Baggies (W3 D1), with those three victories coming by an aggregate score of 10-0.
● West Brom have won just one of their last 11 away league games against Leeds (D3 L7), winning 3-2 in the Championship in January 2007.
● Leeds have lost their final league game in just one of the last eight campaigns (W3 D4), doing so against Ipswich in 2018-19. In the Premier League, Leeds have lost their final league game just once (W4 D7), though that defeat did come in their last campaign in the competition in 2003-04 (0-1 vs Chelsea).
● West Bromwich Albion haven’t won their final league game in any of the last 12 seasons (D6 L6), since beating QPR 2-0 in the 2007-08 Championship campaign.
● Leeds have scored 59 Premier League goals this season, a record for a promoted club in a 38-game season in the competition. Victory here will see them finish the season with 59 points, the most by a promoted club since Ipswich Town in 2000-01 (66).
● West Bromwich Albion have lost their last three Premier League games, last losing four league games in a row between January and March 2018, a run of eight consecutive defeats.
● Leeds have benefitted from an own goal in each of their last three league meetings with West Brom, with Kyle Bartley (October 2019), Semi Ajayi (January 2020) and Romaine Sawyers (December 2020) the players in question.
● West Brom boss Sam Allardyce has never lost at Elland Road in his managerial career (W2 D2), with this his first away game against Leeds since a 1-1 draw with West Ham in the 2011-12 Championship.
● Leeds’ Patrick Bamford has scored 16 Premier League goals this season, the most by a player for a promoted club since Charlie Austin with QPR in 2014-15 (18).
● Leeds United have won 52% of the Premier League games winger Raphinha has played this season (15/29), compared to 25% without him (2/8). The Brazilian has ended on the winning side in his last six Premier League games, with only one player ever winning seven in a row for a newly promoted team – Steve Watson for Newcastle United between February and May 1994.
LEICESTER V TOTTENHAM
4pm Next we have the highlight of the day, and all eyes will be on this fixture! Leicester have had a very tough run-in having had to play Man Untied, Chelsea and now Spurs. That win over United was massive, but the loss to Chelsea has put them on the backfoot for today. They start the day in fifth, and Liverpool are fully expected to beat Crystal Palace. That means Leicester can win here and still have heartbreak on the final day of the season. That will be two years in a row that they looked pretty much certain of Champions League football only to miss out in the final games. Last year was incredible how poorly they finished, while they weren’t as clear this season – it’s just been incredibly competitive. They have a good chance of winning here against a Spurs side who don’t really know where they are going at the moment in my opinion.
Spurs have turned on the style against sides like Sheffield United and Wolves recently, but they have been really up-and-down lately. It’s hard to know what to expect from them, and they have come up short against most of the top sides this season. Leicester were played off the park by Chelsea midweek, but they have been playing well in general lately. Well enough to beat an average Spurs side anyway, and we could easily see Spurs drop out of the Europa League spots here with a Leicester win. They are worth backing at 2.08, but I’m also happy to keep stakes limited. What will Harry Kane do during the summer if Spurs fail to even get Europa League football?
The Striker Says:
Two points win Leicester to beat Tottenham at 2.08 with BETDAQ Betting Exchange
You can view all markets here -> http://bit.ly/BDQleittm
● Leicester have won two of their last three league games against Tottenham (L1), as many as they had in their previous 12. They’re looking to complete their first league double over Spurs since 1998-99.
● Spurs have only failed to score in one of their 14 Premier League away games against Leicester, finding the net in each of their last 11 visits. However, Spurs have also only kept two clean sheets at the Foxes in the competition.
● After winning their final league game in seven consecutive seasons between 2008-09 and 2014-15, Leicester have failed to win any of their last five season finales (D3 L2), with one of those defeats coming against Tottenham.
● Tottenham have lost their final league game in just one of the last 10 Premier League campaigns (W7 D2), going down 5-1 to Newcastle in 2015-16.
● Leicester spent the third longest time in the top four of the Premier League last season, yet finished 5th (325 days). The Foxes have spent longer in the top four than any other Premier League side this term (242 days), but are adjudged to have a 74.9% chance of finishing outside the top four based on Opta’s predicted table.
● Only Brighton (25) have dropped more points from winning positions than Tottenham this season (23), with Spurs losing 2-1 against Aston Villa last time out despite opening the scoring.
● Tottenham picked up 13 points from their first five away Premier League games this season (W4 D1). However, they’ve picked up just 13 more from their subsequent 13 on the road (W3 D4 L6).
● Tottenham striker Harry Kane has scored seven goals on the final day of the Premier League season – only Andrew Cole (9), Les Ferdinand (9) and Matthew Le Tissier (8) have scored more such goals in the competition.
● Tottenham’s Harry Kane has scored more Premier League goals against Leicester than he has vs any other opponent (14 in 11 games). Seven of these goals have come in six games at the King Power Stadium, including a four-goal haul in May 2017.
● Leicester’s Kelechi Iheanacho has scored 12 Premier League goals this season, despite his first strike of the season only coming in February. Only Papiss Cissé has scored more in a Premier League campaign despite not scoring his first goal until February in that season (13 in 2011-12).
LIVERPOOL V CRYSTAL PALACE
4pm Liverpool will no doubt be the most popular BETDAQ Multiple selection today, and they should really win this tie. They have finished the season off very strongly to steal the Top Four spot off Leicester (or Chelsea if they fail to win today), and it’s almost impossible to see them not winning here. I would recommend putting Liverpool in any BETDAQ Multiple this weekend. They bossed the Burnley game midweek, and although they needed a 95th minute winner against West Brom, they played well enough that they deserved to win and that just showed the team spirit. The one minor worry about today is they have failed to fire a lot at Anfield this season, but Palace are a very limited side and this should be a straightforward home win.
This marks Roy Hodgson’s last game as Crystal Palace manager too, and it will be interesting to see where the club go after this. They could easily slip down to be in next season relegation battle, as Hodgson has been a rock for them in recent seasons. Their recent games have been pretty open given they have had nothing to play for, and that should suit Liverpool. It’s hard not to see goals in this one, but I still feel there is value in under 3.5 goals at 1.97. Palace don’t create much, and although they have no reason to sit back here – Liverpool haven’t been scoring goals for fun at home this season. I’d expect a routine 2-0 Liverpool win, and under 3.5 goals looks good value.
The Striker Says:
Two points win Under 3.5 goals at 1.97 with BETDAQ Betting Exchange
You can view all markets here -> http://bit.ly/BDQlfccry
● Liverpool have won their last seven Premier League meetings with Crystal Palace by an aggregate score of 22-5.
● Crystal Palace’s last nine Premier League away games against Liverpool have seen them lose three in a row (1998-2013), win three in a row (2015-2017) and then lose three in a row (2017-2020).
● Liverpool won 7-0 at Selhurst Park in the reverse fixture against Crystal Palace this season – the most goals they’ve scored against an opponent in a single Premier League campaign is 11 (vs Ipswich in 2001-02).
● Liverpool have won their final league game in each of the last four seasons, their longest such run since winning their season finale in 13 consecutive campaigns between 1907-08 and 1923-24.
● This is the 12th time Crystal Palace have finished a top-flight campaign away from home, with the Eagles winning just one of their previous 11 such matches (D3 L7).
● Crystal Palace have conceded 64 Premier League goals this season – only in 2004-05 (71) have they conceded more in a single campaign in the competition.
● Liverpool’s Sadio Mané has scored in each of his last seven Premier League appearances against Crystal Palace – in the competition’s history, only Robin van Persie (against Stoke) has scored in eight consecutive games against an opponent.
● Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane have scored a combined 19 Premier League goals for Liverpool against Crystal Palace. Only against Arsenal (20) have the trio scored more goals against a single Premier League opponent during their time at Liverpool.
● Crystal Palace striker Christian Benteke has scored 10 Premier League goals this season, reaching double figures in the competition for the first time since 2016-17 (15). The Belgian has also scored five goals in his four away Premier League games against Liverpool – only Andy Cole (8) has scored more as a visiting player at Anfield in the competition’s history.
● This will be Roy Hodgson’s last game in charge of Crystal Palace, with the 73-year-old having taken charge of more Premier League games for the Eagles than any other manager (148, including this game). Overall, this will be his 364th Premier League game in charge, overtaking José Mourinho into 8th in the all-time list.
MANCHESTER CITY V EVERTON
4pm A massive game for Everton here, and they have a really tough fixture away to Man City. The positive for Everton is that Man City have nothing to play for with the title already in the bag and they will definitely have one eye on the Champions League Final next Saturday. We should see anyone with a niggle rested by Guardiola, and we could see a few early subs too. They will get the title today however, and sides always like to win for their fans on the final day. I don’t think we will see a lacklustre City side, but they will be more focused on the Champions League Final. Everton have had a lot of chances for European football this season, and they have blown all of them. At one stage they could even get into the Top Four mix after they beat Liverpool but they put in some woeful performances.
They are definitely in the mix for a Europa League spot today, especially if Spurs lose or draw against Leicester. But they have a massive task here with Arsenal having home advantage against Brighton too. Everton have probably played better than Arsenal and deserve that final Europa League spot, but it’s just the way the fixtures fell. Usually Everton would come here to defend, but they can’t really do that today and City’s recent games have been so open. It was nice to land a Max Bet on over 2.5 goals in the City game midweek, and although it won’t be a Max Bet today – over 2.5 goals is worth backing at 1.64 in what should be another open game involving City.
The Striker Says:
Three points win Over 2.5 goals at 1.64 with BETDAQ Betting Exchange
You can view all markets here -> http://bit.ly/BDQmcievr
● Manchester City have won each of their last six Premier League games against Everton, as many as they had in their previous 21 against the Toffees (D5 L10).
● Everton have lost their last six Premier League games against Man City, only losing more consecutively in the competition against Manchester United (9 between 1999-2004).
● Manchester City have lost their final league game in just one of the last 12 seasons (W9 D2), losing 3-2 at home to Norwich in 2012-13.
● Premier League champions Manchester City have lost four home league games this season. The last English top-flight champion to lose more at home in a title-winning campaign was Liverpool in 1963-64 (5).
● Everton haven’t won their final league game in any of the last four campaigns (D1 L3), since beating Norwich 3-0 in 2015-16.
● This is the third time Everton have faced the Premier League champions on the final day of a campaign, with the Toffees losing the other two (vs Arsenal in 2001-02 and Manchester United in 2002-03).
● Everton have won 11 Premier League away games this season, already their most in a single campaign in the competition. Their record for away wins in a single league campaign is 12, doing so in two different title-winning seasons in 1969-70 and 1984-85.
● If he plays, this will be Sergio Agüero’s final Premier League game for Manchester City. The Argentine is the highest scoring non-English player in the competition’s history (182), while he averages a goal every 109 minutes in the competition – the best rate of any player to have scored at least 10.
● Man City striker Gabriel Jesus has scored seven Premier League goals against Everton, more than he has vs any other opponent in the competition. The Brazilian has netted a brace in his last two against the Toffees at the Etihad Stadium.
● Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has won all four of his Premier League games on the final day of the season – no manager has a better 100% win rate in such games in the competition (Chris Coleman also 4/4).
SHEFFIELD UNITED V BURNLEY
4pm Of all the games on the final day, this is probably the least interesting. I would suggest even some Sheffield United and Burnley fans will watch the other games! You could say the same about some more games today, but we have a Max Lay on the likes of Fulham v Newcastle! Although this is a meaningless game and the standard on show should be low quality, it’s an interesting game from a Burnley point of view. I made this point when Newcastle played Sheffield United midweek, but the same applies here – it’s interesting to see can Burnley handle a poor Sheffield United side with a view to staying up next season. Sheffield United have been very poor since before Christmas, and Burnley should be beating them.
Sheffield United actually started the season in good form, but they couldn’t get any results and then the poor morale set in and their season was over. Even in their recent wins, they haven’t deserved them and have been very lucky looking at the xG figures. Burnley were outplayed by Liverpool midweek, but you would expect that and they didn’t play as bad as the 4-0 loss against Leeds suggested. They have been creating more chances recently than they usually do, and with Sheffield United so limited Burnley are worth backing at 2.5. I would have them a couple of ticks shorter, but like I said you’d definitely want to watch the other games today!
The Striker Says:
One point win Burnley to beat Sheffield United at 2.5 with BETDAQ Betting Exchange
You can view all markets here -> http://bit.ly/BDQshubur
● Sheffield United have won just one of their last seven league games against Burnley (D2 L4), though it was a 3-0 victory in this exact fixture last season.
● Burnley have won just one of their last 18 away league games against Sheffield United (D5 L12), winning 3-2 in a Championship match in December 2008.
● This is the 56th different league campaign in which Sheffield United and Burnley have faced each other – the Clarets are aiming to complete the double over the Blades for just the third time, previously doing so in 1921-22 and 2008-09.
● Sheffield United have won their final league game in just one of their four previous Premier League campaigns, losing the last three in a row since beating Chelsea 4-2 in 1992-93.
● Burnley have lost their final league game in each of their last four campaigns. Their last win was at Charlton in the 2015-16 Championship (3-0), which was the last time they finished a league campaign away from home.
● Sheffield United have lost 29 Premier League matches this season, a joint record in the competition. Only three top-flight sides have ever lost 30 in a season: Leeds United in 1946-47 (30), Blackburn Rovers in 1965-66 (30) and Stoke City in 1984-85 (31), all in 42-game seasons. The Blades could be the first team in the history of the Football League to lose 30 league games in a season with fewer than 40 matches.
● Sheffield United have scored 19 Premier League goals this season, but have an expected goals value of 32.7, meaning they’ve scored roughly 14 goals fewer than would normally be expected. Since we have this metric available (2010-11), only Liverpool have had a higher negative such difference between xG and goals scored in a single top-flight campaign (65.9 xG, 47 goals scored).
● Sheffield United have scored just 19 Premier League goals this season and could become the first ever top-flight team to fail to score at least 20 goals in a full season. In Football League history, the only team to go through an entire season and not score 20 goals was Loughborough in the second tier in 1899-1900, who won only one of their 34 games and scored just 18 times.
● Burnley have lost all five Premier League matches without goalkeeper Nick Pope this season, conceding 17 goals at an average of 3.4 per game. In their 3-0 defeat to Liverpool, goalkeeper Will Norris conceded three times without making a single save, the first time a goalkeeper had done so on his first start in the competition since Jak Alnwick in December 2014 (Newcastle vs Arsenal, 0 saves, 4 conceded).
● No Sheffield United player has more than two Premier League assists this season (John Lundstram, John Fleck and George Baldock all on two) – in the history of the Premier League, only one team has gone through a season without a player reaching at least 3+ assists, with Charlton Athletic in 1998-99 having five players on a high of two (Mark Kinsella, Steve Jones, Danny Mills, Richard Rufus & Eddie Youds).
WEST HAM V SOUTHAMPTON
4pm West Ham have had an excellent season. Think back to when David Moyes was brought in – he came in with the aim of keeping them in the Premier League and this season they have had a genuine run at the Top Four. They have been right in the mix and their finish to the season has let them down. It’s hard for these sides to handle the pressure, especially when the likes of Chelsea and Liverpool are chasing you. When Chelsea beat them a few weeks ago, that really changed the Top Four race but West Ham let themselves down with that 3-2 loss against Newcastle with some terrible errors. Still, at the start of the season they would have been delighted with a Europa League spot, and they should finish sixth which is still an incredible achievement.
The Hammers have been one of my favourite sides to back this season as they have offered some excellent value in the markets at times, however I’m going to finish the season with a lay on them. The 1.78 looks too short for a game like this – Southampton have been finishing the season well with two wins from their last three. Leeds beat them 2-0 midweek, but they actually played OK. I know they have been giving away too many chances and that has to be a worry, especially with West Ham being so good going forward this season – but West Ham’s level has dropped a little towards the end of the season, and I expect a closer game than the odds suggest here. West Ham are a value lay for a small bet.
The Striker Says:
One point lay (liability) West Ham to beat Southampton at 1.78 with BETDAQ Betting Exchange
You can view all markets here -> http://bit.ly/BDQwhusth
● West Ham are unbeaten in their last six Premier League meetings with Southampton, winning five in a row before their 0-0 draw in the reverse fixture.
● Since drawing 3-3 in May 1994 in their first such meeting, none of Southampton’s last 17 away Premier League games against West Ham have ended level, with Saints winning just four of those (L13).
● Since losing three in a row between 2013-14 and 2015-16, West Ham haven’t lost their final league game in any of the last four campaigns (W3 D1).
● When finishing a league campaign away from home, Southampton have won just one of their last 13 final games (D4 L8), beating Man City 1-0 in the final game at Maine Road in 2003.
● West Ham United need a point to guarantee a top-six finish in the Premier League for only the second time, finishing 5th in 1998-99 under Harry Redknapp. It will be manager David Moyes’ best finish since he came 6th in his final season as Everton boss in 2012-13.
● Southampton have lost nine of their 10 Premier League away games so far in 2021, with the only exception being a 2-0 victory at bottom side Sheffield United. Saints have conceded 30 goals in these nine defeats, scoring just seven in return.
● Southampton captain James Ward-Prowse hasn’t missed a single minute of Premier League football in either of the last two seasons – if he plays 90 minutes in this game, he will be the first midfielder to play every minute in consecutive seasons, and only the second midfielder to do so in more than one season, along with Gary McAllister (1993-94 with Leeds United, 1996-97 with Coventry City).
● Since his first Premier League appearance for West Ham on February 3rd, only Kelechi Iheanacho (14) has been involved in more Premier League goals than Jesse Lingard (13; 9 goals, 4 assists). The record tally for goals/assists in a Premier League season for a player who didn’t appear until as late as February is 15 by Bruno Fernandes last season for Manchester United (8 goals, 7 assists).
● Against no side has Southampton’s Theo Walcott scored more Premier League goals than he has against West Ham (6), while he’s only had more goal involvements against Newcastle (11) than he has against the Hammers (10 – 6 goals, 4 assists).
● West Ham forward Michail Antonio has registered 10+ goals in his last two Premier League seasons, one of only five players to manage that feat in consecutive seasons for the Hammers. His strike against West Brom took him to 46 Premier League goals for the club, one behind Paolo Di Canio’s record of 47 which has stood since 2003.
WOLVES V MANCHESTER UNITED
4pm We finish the Final Day preview with Wolves taking on Man United. It’s fair to say it hasn’t been the season that Wolves wanted, and they haven’t looked themselves all season. It must be hard going from Europa League spots to the bottom half of the table, but you have to say that’s where they deserve to be. United have the luxury of finishing second regardless of what happens here, and to be honest they have played like that in their final games. They rested a lot of players against Leicester for that loss, but they gave away an xG of 3.73 against Liverpool and then they put in a lacklustre performance midweek against Fulham for a 1-1 draw. It’s understandable given they have a Europa League Final to look forward to, and any other side would probably beat them today but Wolves have been fairly limited this season.
All that being said, I still wouldn’t have Wolves favourites here. I know we have a very open market and there isn’t much in it, but I would have United slight favourites instead of Wolves. Probably not enough to back United however – as I assume they will be fully focused on the Europa League on Wednesday. You might see some changes from United here, and some early subs. Wolves have been one of the sides who have looked on the beach early at times this season, and I feel the best call here is a small bet on the draw at 3.8. That looks the value in a game that could go any way. I actually wouldn’t rule out a 0-0 draw in a low tempo affair.
The Striker Says:
One point win Draw at 3.8 with BETDAQ Betting Exchange
You can view all markets here -> http://bit.ly/BDQwolmnu
● Wolves have alternated between winning (3) and not winning (D1 L2) in their six Premier League home games against Manchester United, with the last such meeting ending 1-1.
● Manchester United have lost just one of their last seven Premier League meetings with Wolves (W3 D3), going down 2-1 at Molineux in April 2019.
● If Manchester United avoid defeat, they will become just the fourth side to remain unbeaten away from home across an entire English top-flight campaign, after Preston (1888-89), Arsenal (2001-02) and Arsenal again (2003-04).
● After winning four in a row between 2013-14 and 2016-17, Wolves have lost their last three games on the final day of a league season. However, all four of those wins were at home, while all three defeats came on the road.
● Manchester United have lost their final league game in just one of their last 13 campaigns (W9 D3), going down 2-0 against Cardiff in 2018-19. When finishing their Premier League campaign away from home, the Red Devils are unbeaten in 10 games (W7 D3), since losing 1-3 at Spurs in 2000-01.
● Wolves’ shot conversion rate is just 7.8% this season (35 goals from 449 shots), with only relegated sides Sheffield United (6.1) and Fulham (6.3) having a lower conversion rate this term.
● No Premier League side has had more shots on target than Manchester United this season (209, level with Liverpool). The Red Devils haven’t finished a league campaign as the side with the most attempts on target since 2007-08 (260).
● With Raul Jiménez in the team this season (up to the end of November), Wolves had won 50% of their Premier League games (5/10). Since his injury, Wolves have won just 26% of their league games (7/27).
● With 18 goals and 12 assists this season, Bruno Fernandes has become just the fifth player to register 30+ goal involvements in a single Premier League campaign for Manchester United, after Eric Cantona in 1993-94 (30), Cristiano Ronaldo in 2007-08 (37), Wayne Rooney in 2011-12 (31) and Robin van Persie in 2012-13 (35).
● Marcus Rashford’s next goal will be his 100th in all competitions in his senior career (88 for Manchester United, 11 for England). Rashford has scored in two of his three starts against Wolves for the Red Devils.