Aleksandar Mitrovic celebrates after putting Fulham ahead at Arsenal – he is 8/1 to score a header vs Man City
Our tipster Jones Knows has four bets to attack across the Premier League weekend with 8/1 Aleksandar Mitrovic at the centre of his thoughts.
How did we get on last week?
I felt like Brenton Andreasik last week. Not aware of his work? I’ll fill you in.
He crashed out of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire on the first question.
The question: “Snapping selfies in kitchens you can’t afford and taking ‘a meatball break’ are two things that Buzzfeed says every twenty-something does on their first trip to where?”
The four possible answers were a) to Paris, b) to London, c) to Rome, and d) to Ikea.
He answered, in confident fashion too, Rome. Yes, really.
Absolutely useless. It doesn’t get much worse. And that perfectly described my punting efforts last weekend where four points went south in embarrassing fashion.
My theory of Bournemouth vs Tottenham, Brentford vs Wolves and Brighton vs Chelsea all to produce a low total goal count was too bad to be true. I played the under 5.5 goals line. There were 12 goals. And, the play of both teams not scoring in all of those three games at 8/1 also didn’t fare great to say the least. Every team scored.
I wonder if Brenton Andreasik fancies a beer?
A world-class player of such ruthlessness in front of goal – only Erling Haaland has a better minutes-to-goal ratio than Mitrovic (113mins) this season – has to be considered in the goalscorer markets. Mitrovic has scored three of his nine goals this season with his head and no player in the league has attempted more headed shots (21) or won more aerial duels (62) than the Serb battering ram. City have conceded goals via headers from Joachim Andersen (Crystal Palace) and Rafa Mir (Sevilla) this season and just over 16 per cent of all goals conceded by City in the Pep Guardiola era have been from headers.
Fetch me my wheelbarrow will you. Put some money in it and go back Nottingham Forest and the unders. If you take Christian Eriksen out of the equation, Brentford’s away form since promotion in the Premier League is horrendous. Without the Danish delight, the Bees have played 20 away games, winning just twice and have conceded on average 2.1 goals per-90 minutes in those matches. And then you throw the suspension of Ivan Toney into the mix. He’s been responsible for 40 per cent of their goal involvements (27 in 67) since promotion. Forest are limited but they’ve already beaten West Ham and Liverpool at the City Ground this season. Another hard-fought win is within their grasp here.
Everton have improved since last season but there is still an air of overperformance on their underlying numbers when it comes to their defending. Everton have the fourth highest expected goals against this season (21.2) but have the fourth actual best defensive record (conceded 12). That’s an unsustainable metric and I’m not sure you can allow the quality of Harvey Barnes such high probability chance creation without getting punished. The game plan is clear from Brendan Rodgers to get his winger into dangerous positions in the box and it’s reaping the rewards with Barnes scoring three in his last six games helped by some wonderful chemistry with James Maddison and Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall.
Tired limbs result in tired matches where the goal lines are set too high by the markets. With five of these teams negotiating their 10th or 11th match in just over a month, it’s easy to foresee these heavyweight clashes descending into cagey affairs with such low energy levels on show. Plus, Unai Emery always sets his teams up in the early stages in a new club with good defensive structure – from a sample size of eight games, there has been an average of just 1.87 total goals in his first competitive league game in charge of a new club.