Sunday, June 23, 2024

Premier League predictions: Chelsea to create chances and then capitalise at Fulham on Monday Night Football – Sky Sports


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Football Journalist
Monday 2 October 2023 19:15, UK
Jones Knows has checked the stats and expects Chelsea to finally find some form at Fulham on Monday Night Football…
As someone who puts lots of emphasis on the underlying numbers when making assessments of teams, this fixture is troubling me. All the data is telling me to back Chelsea at Evens with Sky Bet but my eyes tell me otherwise. I’m torn.
Fulham are a team I rarely have faith in due to their constant defying of their performance data. The quality of chance they offer up to the opposition equates to 1.79 worth of expected goals per 90 – it’s a figure that should have them rated as a relegation-threatened side and hasn’t improved this season. Southampton were relegated with an expected goals-against record of 1.63 per 90 last season.
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Marco Silva’s side have conceded 3.5 goals fewer than their expected goals faced this season – that’s the highest in the Premier League. They are at it again.
I have been convinced a regression to the mean is coming with Fulham in terms of their results dropping to a level associated with a relegation team, but they remain defiant, even since losing Aleksander Mitrovic. They even lost the expected goals battle to Luton at home and still won the game. My mind has been boggled by Silva’s side.
And then you have Chelsea, who the underlying numbers suggest they have been very unfortunate in making the club’s worst-ever start after six games in a Premier League season based on expected goals both for and against, which ranks them sixth for expected goals for and third for expected goals against.
Mauricio Pochettino’s men have created better chances than their opponents in all six Premier League games this season.
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What to do then? Trust the numbers? Or go with my gut which is telling me to swerve Chelsea? Numbers wins.
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