I am going back to the well for our first bet of the weekend and taking Conor Chaplin and Ipswich to continue their runs of good form.
Ipswich vs Plymouth
Ipswich won again midweek as they went to Ashton Gate and came away with a 1-0 win, dominating for large spells of the game and should have won by more than a single goal. So much was made of Leicester going eight points clear, but the Tractor boys are now only five points behind with a game in hand and if they win that game, they could open a 12 points gap to the 3rd place side. My metrics have them 6th on xPTS, 4th on xG ratio, with only Blackburn generating a higher xG than Ipswich, but no side has more shots, shots on target or shots in the box than the Tractor Boys.
Conor Chaplin was the League One leading scorer last season and has carried on in similar form with five goals in his opening 12 games. He will play just off the main striker, George Hirst and will drop deep which means he is hard of the opposition to pick up. Chaplin has had the most shots in the division per 90 mins with 4.85 and averages 1.49 shots on target per 90 mins. He has had at least two shots in every game this season and at least one shot on target in 11 of 12 games and the game he failed to have a shot on target he hit the bar.
Plymouth have continued from last season with a good home record and a poor away record. Their record on the road this season and last reads W11-D10-L8 and this season alone it’s W0-D3-L3. They have conceded the 3rd highest number of shots, 6th highest shots on target conceded per 90 mins and 4th highest shots in the box with an away xGA of 1.42. It’s not great reading for Argyle fans heading to Portman Road.
Ipswich should continue their great start with victory over here, they have scored two or more in their last 16 home games, and they record this season is W10-D1-L1. The last time Ipswich didn’t score twice was against Plymouth in League One in January. Ipswich are averaging 2.5 cards per Championship fixture, collecting 1+ in 10 of 12 games whilst Plymouth have seen their hosts collect an average of 2.0 cards per away game with 8 of 13 opponents collecting at least one card. The referee here is Gavin Ward who averages 3.88 cards per fixture this season and have given both side a card each in seven of eight games.
- Ipswich to score over 1 goal, Chaplin over 1.5 shots &over 0.5 shots on target. 10/11 with Bet365
Accrington vs Colchester
Colchester sacked yet another manager last week and this time have put Matty Etherington in interim charge and he oversaw a 3-2 win at Grimsby in midweek. However, they were a little fortunate to win the game. They lost the xG 1.27 vs 1.18 plus they lost the shot count 18 v 9 and Colchester scored with all three of their shots on target. Its two long trips in a week for the Us as they travelled to Grimsby on Tuesday and then Accrington for the game on Saturday.
Etherington has said that his players are in a “positive place” ahead of the game. He said that he felt they were in control of the game and played some good stuff but then admitted his side struggled in the 2nd 45 mins. “In the second half it was backs to the wall at times, but the mentality of the players, the desire of the players like I mentioned after the game was outstanding”.
Colchester have been poor for much of this season. They have won just four games beating Grimsby, Notts County 5-4 and then Tranmere and Gillingham. Defeats have come against Forest Green 5-0, Morecambe 3-1 and Harrogate 2-1. There have been some awful performances in there. Over the season I have them in the bottom 5 for the majority of major metrics and my ratings have them as poor side.
Accrington have gone under the radar with five wins on the spin and have moved up to 6th with the 2nd best results over the last five games. There results have been impressive although the underlying performances have been average.
There has been a lot of noise around the club over the last few weeks with the contract situation with manager John Coleman. However, that seems to have brought the squad together and the players have reacted well, and their performances suggest they want the manager to stay. Josh Andrews and Joe Pritchard have been in good form and despite the hosts having both centre backs out through suspension they should be better than Colchester and collect another win here.
- Accrington win 21/20 with William Hill
Sunderland vs Norwich
Norwich are slowly slipping down the table win two wins in their last nine games with an away record of W1-D2-L3 with their only victory over Huddersfield. I have them 20th on xPTS and 21st on xG ratio. Over the last four and eight games they sit 20th for xPTS, this isn’t a blip this is a prolonged downturn of results and performances. They have now conceded 15 goals in their six away days and given the underlying performances I am not sure they will be good for a clean sheet here.
Not only are the Canaries suffering a poor run of form they have a long injury list with key players out. Keeper Angus Gunn is now out joining their main two strikers in Ashley Barnes and Josh Sargent with key centre back Grant Hanley also out.
Sunderland aren’t in great form either with three successive defeats but to add some context to these results, they were reduced to 10 men early on against Middlesborough and were good against league leaders Leicester for large spells of that game. Despite the poor run they will fancy getting back to winning ways at the Stadium of Light and my metrics have them 5th on xPTS and 9th on xPTS so the underlying performances are good.
They have the league’s leading scorer in Jack Clarke who has eight goals from 13 games and the midfield four of Clarke, Bellingham, Ekwah and Roberts should offer too much for a Norwich side in desperate form and a manager that’s becoming increasingly under pressure.
- Sunderland win at 21/20 with 888 and Unibet.