Disclaimer: This series is examining the games days prior to matchday, there is always the possibility for injuries, coach selections, etc. They may be updated to reflect most accurate starting lineup.
Cardiff City v. Brighton & Hove Albion
Location: Cardiff City Stadium, Cardiff, Wales
Cardfiff comes into this match as slight favorites, though any outcome doesn’t seem too far out of the realm of possibility. This game is expected to have 2 goals.
Cardiff are coming off a loss to Leicester City in a 1-0 defeat in the first game at Ling Power since the tragic loss of the Leicester City chairman. Etheridge saved Cardiff from a much greater loss (including a shot on target in the 88′ denied by the keeper). Cardiff was lucky to have not played a man down for close to sixty minutes after a missed handball to deny a goal by Sol Bamba — and to top it off they failed to score yet again. Cardiff really need to dig deep and find some goals which will come in short supply against Mat Ryan (despite the 3 goals scored by Everton). They are averaging 1.17 goals scored/game and 2.17 goals conceded/game at home, so this could be a great opportunity for both sides.
Brighton gave up a few goals to Everton in route to a sizable defeat which tied their most goals allowed this season (previously against Manchester United). They were unfortunate to have their win streak come to an end so abruptly, but they have a good opportunity to get back to winning ways here. Cardiff has found it to be an insurmountable task to score goals most games and Brighton has been capable enough at scoring them. Brighton away from home has been averaging 0.67 goals scored/game and 1.67 conceded/game. This means that both sides are expected to ship more goals than scored, so it might be a very interesting game to watch.
Huddersfield Town v. West Ham United
Location: John’s Smith Stadium, Huddersfield
West Ham are visting-team favorites in what’s expected to be a low scoring matchup (mostly in West Ham’s favor).
Huddersfield took a step forward last weekend with their defeat of Fulham (courtesy of a Fosu-Mensah own goal). They were able to manage a couple shots on target (2), hit the post (1), and had a number of shots blocked (4). Lössl wasn’t really tested in this match only being required to make 1 save but Huddersfield continue to struggle with goal scoring and that could be a problem against a West Ham side with some newly-found confidence (and no lack of goal scoring). Huddersfield have dreadful scoring form at home, they are averaging 0.17 goals scored/game and are conceding 1.17 goals/game.
West Ham exploded for 4 goals over Burnley. This game provided some rationale for how high I was on these Hammers to start the season. They got 2 goals from new-boy Felipe Anderson, 1 from Arnautovic and yet another from former-Manchester United striker, Chicharito. West Ham has a long way to go to salvage their season, but Hammers fans will be hoping this is a start. On the road West Ham is averaging 1 goal scored/game, but are allowing 2 concessions/game, though this needs to be caveat with several of their early season games were at home where their form was particularly poor.
Leicester City v. Burnley
Location: King Power Stadium, Leicester
Leicester are massive favorites at home against Burnley. Leicester are currently 2 goal favorites in what’s supposed be a 2 goal match.
Leicester City looked dangerous at times and then rather disengaged at others, which is to be expected after the tragedy of the helicopter crash that claimed the life of their owner and four others. They managed to end the game with both a win and a clean sheet, which will give them something good to take from this game. I do think they’ll not be happy with their attack after only registering one goal against the team allowing the 4th-most goals against. Leicester is averaging 1.6 goals scored/game and conceding 1.2 goals/game at home.
Burnley did get a couple goals to add to their tally, but their last outing against West Ham wasn’t the best they’ve had. They also are in the midst of 3 straight losses and 4 straight failed to win not including allowing West Ham to rise above them. Burnley has a negative goal difference and after last week’s performance, it’s not really any surprise why. Burnely has a very poor record away from home, scoring on average 1 goal/game and conceding 2.5 goals/game.
Newcastle United v. AFC Bournemouth
Location: St. James’ Park, Newcastle
Bournemouth come into the match as slight underdogs against Newcastle. This match is currently projected to have 3 goals scored.
Newcastle managed a surprising victory over high-flying Watford who nearly took the lead early with a Roberto Pereyra shot off the post. After this win, Newcastle has stepped momentarily out of the bottom three, but there’s still a lot of soccer to be played and Newcastle has a lot of work to ensure they avoid the drop. Newcastle’s record for goals at home is 0.67 goals/game with concessions on average at 1.5 goals/game.
Bournemouth came out of the chute blistering against Manchester United and took the lead with an early goal. I think the cherries deserved more from this game but it just wasn’t meant to be. The Cherries played well for good chunks of the match, but they had some costly lapses that Manchester United were able to capitalize on. Bonus thought: David Brooks might be one of the best looking young talents I’ve seen in the midfield, the cherries need to tie him down. Bournemouth on the road is averaging 1.8 goals/game with concessions of 1.4 goals/game.
Southampton v. Watford
Location: St. Mary’s Stadium, Southampton
Southampton enter the match as slight favorites in a game expected to have less than 2.5 goals scored.
Southampton were simply destroyed by Manchester City (anyone else feel like I’ve said this before?) and frankly, I think the scoresheet gives too much credit to the Saints. Danny Ings did well to convert the penalty, but generally the Saints were vastly outplayed in all areas of the pitch and it was very apparent. Southampton are on the right side of the relegation battle, but only just. Southampton are having problems finding the goal this season in general, and home is no exception where they are averaging 0.60 goals scored/game while conceding 1.4 goals/game.
Watford will be rightfully upset with their loss to Newcastle. Watford’s recent form has been well off their season opening form. I still think a top half finish is well within reach for this side, maybe even continental competition but they’ll have to be better. They can’t give away points to teams at the bottom of the table like they did for the Magpies. Watford’s form seems to have cooled off some, but this matchup against Southampton seems like a reasonable opportunity for a return to form. Watford is averaging 1.2 goals scored/game on the road and are conceding on average 1, combine this with Southampton’s goal-scoring struggles and I think they’ve got a good chance to walk away with a win.
Last Updated: November 8, 2018