In what promises to be one of the sleeper hits of the Premier League weekend calendar, St James Park will welcome Aston Villa at 14:00 this Sunday. Both sets of fans will enter this match with their pulses still racing after a 3-1 win over Everton and a 3-3 draw against Leeds respectively. If you were to show an alien a game of Premier League football, both of these games would make them understand why people make the claim it’s the greatest league in the world. My bet builder tips for the Newcastle v Everton were a winner! So, I’m going for the double this weekend by giving you another 3 Top Bet Builder Tips and a Cheat Sheet to get you clued up for kick off on Sunday!
The fans of The Toon will be absolutely rocking the ground after their midweek win saw them climb outside the relegation zone for the first time since October! The 1-0 win away at Leeds prior to the Everton game also meant that they had managed back-to-back wins for the first time in the Premier League this season. This takes them to four games unbeaten in the league now, which considering their torrid start to the season under Steve Bruce is very impressive for the relegation candidates. Eddie Howe appears to have the backing of the players, even flair players like Saint-Maximin are running the full 90 minutes and challenging for every ball. This is in direct contrast to earlier in the season, where in October they had the lowest stats of pressing in the final third of any other team in the league.
It’s a toss up for who is the favourite going into this game according to the bookmakers, which would sound unbelievable only a month ago. This is testament to the performances on the pitch by Newcastle in recent months and I would almost say it was inadvisable to bet against them. Their biggest issue tomorrow will be some selection issues. Matt Ritchie, Isaac Hayden, Ciaran Clark, Paul Dummett, Federico Fernandez, and top scorer Callum Wilson are all still sidelined with persistent injuries. The new signings on either flank face some problems too as Targett is unavailable against his parent club and Trippier will face a late fitness test. Even with these problems, Newcastle’s January window was wisely spent, and they now have some squad depth to cover these absences so it’s likely Dan Burn will make a first appearance tomorrow. A noteworthy stat for tomorrow, is that in the last 12 home meetings between these two, Aston Villa haven’t managed to beat Newcastle dating back to 2005!
Villa fans will be similarly excited going into this clash following their classic against Leeds United. Dan James, the star man for Leeds will be foggy in the memory of those who watched the game in comparison to the man of the match performance by Brazilian talisman Philippe Coutinho. His 2 assists and a goal midweek give him a larger combined goals and assists than the number of games he’s played! Steven Gerrard will be hoping for a similar performance tomorrow as they look to continue unbeaten since his arrival. The manager’s instant success at the club with consecutive wins, has been followed by a slight lull in late December and January which has seen them struggle to consistently pick up 3 points. The pressure of relegation looks almost completely off them, and a win tomorrow would take them currently in 11th place to a round 30 points.
The Villa boss has the opposite problem to Eddie Howe as he welcomes the potential returns of Bertrand Traore and Leon Bailey to his attacking options. The frontline will likely remain unchanged after last week’s result, but these two add some frankly incredible depth to the already quality attacking options of Coutinho, Watkins, Ings, and Buendia. Their backline will be short of usually level-headed Ezri Konsa after his red card in the dying minutes against Leeds which means Mings will partner up with most likely new signing Calum Chambers. They won their previous meeting at Villa Park 2-0 earlier in the season, but it will be more difficult for Gerrard to do the double tomorrow against a new look Newcastle side.
Newcastle v Aston Villa Bet Builder Tips
Over 2.5 Goals
Last weeks selection of over 1.5 goals for the Newcastle v Everton match flew in without a hitch and for good reason too. Newcastle have the highest instance of over 1.5 goals in the league with 20 of their 22 games producing 2 or more goals. They also have never been involved in a game without a goal this season and the same can be said of their guests. Aston Villa arrive with a 100% record of having at least one goal scored in each of their league games this season. They are also the 2nd most frequent goal scorers in the league behind Liverpool only managing 3 games without finding the back of the net.
Both of their respective previous matches saw plenty of goals, 4 in Newcastle’s match and 6 in Villas! Historically there’s been a consistent number of high scoring matches for both teams this season, Villa especially have seen 3 or more goals in 64% of their games. They’re only beaten by Leicester and Liverpool again for the number of instances. Newcastle aren’t slouches either in this regard with 58% of their home games seeing over 2.5 goals. Importantly for this selection goals have been flying in at both ends, Aston Villa have despite their goalscoring exploits managed a goal difference of -4 and Newcastle’s isn’t very pretty at -20. Clean sheet averages for both sides are very low with Newcastle managing a rate of 23% and Villa are almost the lowest in the league at 14%!
What swings the odds in our favour for this selection is the imbalance between attacking and defensive selections tomorrow. As mentioned previously, both teams are having serious trouble keeping the ball out of the net this season. Newcastle’s back line will be without not one but potentially two of their starting fullbacks tomorrow if Targett and Trippier do not make the cut. Dan Burn and Javier Manquiilo will step in either side, however Burn has not made an appearance in Newcastle yet and will need time to adjust. Similarly concerning for their keeper, Manquillo is not a player known for his defending prowess. Villa will be without their best defender Ezri Konsa due to suspension, so Calum Chambers will have to quickly form a partnership with his front foot pairing Tyrone Mings. With both teams’ defenses unsettled and two attacks on red hot form going against each other, I’m predicting plenty of chances for potential goals tomorrow. Over 2.5 goals is available for odds of 1.75 on Paddy Power.
Prediction: Over 2.5 Goals
Philippe Coutinho 1+ Shots On Target
This selection is a blindingly obvious one, however it’s available at surprisingly good odds. Coutinho has taken like a duck to water at his new club much to the delight of Villa fans and Steven Gerrard. As mentioned previously, 2 goals and 2 assists from 2 starts and a sub appearance have created a dream start for “The Little Magician”. Coutinho has spent many years out in the woods as a player, when he was at Inter, he was considered to be not fulfilling his potential and a cut price move for the Brazilian didn’t leave a tear in most Milan fan’s eyes. In his seasons at Liverpool, he shone through as one of the top players in the league, which caught the eye of Barcelona who snatched up the playmaker for a fee estimated to be over £100m. Things took a similar turn for Coutinho after his continental move and his time at Barca and briefly Bayern Munich will be considered a mixed bag with regards to his astronomical fee. Now, it appears we’ve gone full circle and Coutinho has found his way back to Premier League where he’s seen his best performances in his career. Now out of the woods again, the talent everyone knew he had is shining through in a club where he is truly appreciated.
The semantics aside, Coutinho’s shooting stats make impressive reading. As per the Cheat Sheet he is by some margin the most likely to hit the target out of the two teams. He averages a whopping 2.08 shots on target per game and this is from an attempted 3.12 shots! This also makes him one of the most accurate shooters on the field tomorrow with an impressive 66.6% accuracy rate. Across both his clubs this season, the majority of his shots have come from outside the box which is even more impressive when you consider his higher rate of accuracy. It also means that he’s more inclined to shoot from a position where the chance is less clear cut, which will be important if Newcastle are hard to break down tomorrow.
Newcastle concede a consistently high number of shots per game this season. In the league they average 15.5 shots on their goal per game which is high relatively to their counterparts. There have also been whisperings of Eddie Howe’s discontent with his goalkeeping option so Newcastle shot stopper Dubravka will be low on confidence and considered an easy target by Villa. Coutinho has all the tools to hit the target against anyone, but he will be coming up against a leaky defence that has conceded 44 goals this season. He will be fancying his chances tomorrow to continue his hot streak of form and is available for odds of 1.4 on Paddy Power.
Prediction: Philippe Coutinho 1+ Shots on Target
John Mcginn To Be Carded
The next selection hurts me a little to propose to you. As a Scotland fan I absolutely love John Mcginn and I believe anyone who does him wrong should be dragged behind a cart through the streets of Birmingham to pay for their sins and this includes card happy refs too! He’s also loved by his manager, Gerrard has publicly stated his adoration for the Glaswegian dynamo which is entirely unsurprising. The diminutive midfielder is a managers dream he can score, tackle, and pass as well as any box-to-box midfielder and rarely has a moment where he’s not firing on all cylinders. He’s a guaranteed starter for any match for club and country and his arse is almost as famous in Scotland as his brother playing for Hibs.
With that being said, he is my reluctant choice for a booking tomorrow. This season he’s managed to rack up 5 yellow cards making him the 2nd most booked player Villa after Cash and Mings on 6. He commits the most fouls on average per game for Villa with 2.07 per game this season in the league. His appetite for the action also sees him draw a high number of fouls at 2.77 fouls per game and he is facing up against some troublemakers for Newcastle.
Joelinton has found a new lease of life as a combative central midfielder which has seen him accrue 2.58 fouls committed per game and draw 2.08 fouls per game. Joe Willock has similar stats in the middle of the park however he’s the most likely candidate to be dropped for new signing Bruno Guimaraes. As I mentioned last week, before his move to Newcastle the Brazilian midfielder had an incredible 3.35 fouls drawn per game at Lyon which made him the most fouled player on his team by some distance. The third member of the midfield trio Jonjo Shelvey also possesses the capacity to be a horrible bastard in the middle of the park and is no stranger to a yellow himself. His opponents tomorrow suggest it will be a challenging night for the Scotsman which he will no doubt relish.
The referee in charge tomorrow is Craig Pawson, who is on the higher end of the disciplinary charts in the Premier League. As per the Cheat Sheet, he’s averaged 4 yellows per game this season which suggests the odds for a Mcginn booking are even more generous. Similarly, Villa have one of the worst disciplinary records in the league this year averaging 2.14 cards per game. This is even higher when on the road, away from home they average a whopping 2.45! As much as it pains me to say it, Super John Mcginn is looking in trouble tomorrow afternoon and is available for odds of 2.2.
Prediction: John Mcginn to be Carded
Written by an Andy verified content writer
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Newcastle predicted XI (4-3-3) : Dubravka; Trippier, Lascelles, Schar, Burn; Guimaraes, Shelvey, Joelinton; Fraser, Wood, Saint-Maximin
Aston Villa predicted XI (4-3-3) : Martinez; Cash, Chambers, Mings, Digne; McGinn, Luiz, Ramsey; Buendia, Watkins, Coutinho
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* All odds displayed correct at the time of publishing *
How to watch Newcastle v Aston Villa in the Premier League
📅 When is Newcastle v Aston Villa? / Sunday, 13th February 2022, 14:00
🏟 Where is Newcastle v Aston Villa? / St James Park (Newcastle)
📺 What TV channel is Newcastle v Aston Villa on? / Sky Sports Main Event
🟨 …And who is the referee for Newcastle v Aston Villa? / C. Pawson 🏴