Middlebrough v Aston Villa

EFL Championship. Kick-off: 5.30pm, Saturday 1st December. Live on Sky Sports Football/Sky Sports Main Event

JUST how do Aston Villa follow up a 5-5 draw in terms of excitement? Not by travelling to Middlesbrough to face a side managed by Tony Pulis.

Villa fans are probably only now recovering their breath after that incredible match with Nottingham Forest in midweek. Having gone 5-4 up against 10 men with just 15 minutes to go, boss Dean Smith must have been raging that his side managed to throw a couple of points away.

A win would have seen them join Boro in the play-off places and this clash at the Riverside will be a huge test of Villa's promotion credentials.

Had they held on in midweek it would have been four wins in a row for Smith's side but Middlesbrough away is one of the most daunting fixtures on the calendar.

That's why Boro are 888 Sport's 6/5 favourites with Villa available at 49/20 and the draw priced 21/10.

Pulis has his side expertly drilled as always and Middlesbrough head into this game on the back of an eight-game unbeaten run.

They have kept eight clean sheets at the Riverside and a Boro win here coupled with another shut-out is 13/5 with 888 Sport.

But Villa have been scoring freely and I fancy them to get on the scoresheet so back both teams to score at 17/20 (888 Sport).

Tammy Abraham helped himself to four in midweek so his confidence will be sky high. The big striker is 27/5 to break the deadlock in this one and great value at 9/4 for anytime scorer.

Jordan Hugill looks the most likely for Boro, especially as he takes their penalties. The forward is 17/4 for first scorer and 9/5 for anytime scorer at 888 Sport.

Teenager Marcus Tavernier has also hit form, scoring three times in his last five outings, so he could be worth a bet for anytime scorer at 7/2 (888 Sport).

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1 Comment
  1. admin 6 months ago

    From @jstuhhs….

    An intriguing clash between third place Middlesbrough and eighth place Aston Villa takes place at the Riverside on Saturday evening.

    Villa have just come off a 5-5 draw with Nottingham Forest in midweek when having led with 15 minutes to go against a 10 men Forest side it was a case of two points lost.Prior to that Villa had won their last three games since losing to QPR in October having scored 14 goals in those games. However on Saturday they face the daunting task of breaching the best defence in the League in the shape of Tomy Pulis’s Middlesbrough.

    The Boro have only conceded 10 goals in the 19 League games this season and are unbeaten in the last 8 games ( won4 and drawn 4). Only two of these games have gone over 2.5 goals. Middlesbrough have won 5 and drawn 3 of their 9 home games and have kept clean sheets in 7 of these games. Only Derby (1) and Nottingham Forest (2) have scored at the Riverside.

    I cannot believe the Villa defence will be so naive here and I anticipate a tight game. I think Middlesbrough will continue their good form and Villa will eventually lose after a tight first half.

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