Our tip Jones Knows attack the first Premier League games of 2023…
Tottenham vs Aston Villa, New Year’s Day 2pm, Live on Sky Sports – PLAY SUPER 6 WIN £250,000!
Tottenham are always one defeat away from a full-blown crisis – someone might be coming here.
I have huge faith in Antonio Conte’s methods, but his contract situation, amid reports of ongoing negotiations, added to his team’s lackluster intensity at the start of games, and it will come back to bite them at some point.
And judging by the match prices here, the market is too skewed in favor of Spurs, who are a slim 8/13 with Sky Bet to beat an improving Aston Villa.
Conte’s men have conceded first in each of their last nine games in all competitions, losing six of them 2-0. This is a reliable set of data that shows serious flaws in the way Tottenham approach matches.
In the end, a skilful and intelligent side with good defensive ability will make Spurs pay. Villa could be that team under Unai Emery and have shown some really positive signs with their performances against Manchester United, Brighton and Liverpool. Emery’s side earned both their wins against United and Brighton on performance data and produced a healthy expected goals ratio of 1.44 against Liverpool in a game where conceding first to Jurgen Klopp’s side is never ideal from a game-space perspective.
There are many ways to get Aston Villa for your money. Keeping it simple and backing them to avoid defeat at 5/4 Sky Bet stands out as the most important game, but Villa to score first at 15/8 and Villa to win at half-time at 4/1 are also worth considering.
SCORE PREDICTION: 1-2 | JONES KNOWS THE BEST BET: Aston Villa to win or draw (5/4 at Sky Bet – bet here!)
Nottingham Forest vs Chelsea New Year’s Day 4.30pm Live on Sky Sports – PLAY SUPER 6 WIN £250,000!
The match prices look decent to me, with Chelsea getting the job done in the final third with extra quality, especially with Morgan Gibbs-White missing from the hosts, but Forest dig in and cause the Londoners problems at various points.
One area that could prove fruitful for them is sets.
I thought Chelsea looked shaky defending their box under pressure from corners and free-kicks against Bournemouth, and the Cherries created a healthy 0.29 Expected Goal on set-pieces when Lloyd Kelly and Dominic Solanke both missed from close range. Since Graham Potter took over, Chelsea’s overall defensive metrics from league games have declined. They have sent 33 shots from such scenarios for an expected goal of 3.18 – only six teams have a worse record since the day Potter took over.
With that in mind, it’s definitely worth looking at Forest’s centre-backs to threaten.
Since Joe Worrall and Willy Boly were paired four games ago, they have had eight shots on goal between them, and that doesn’t include Boly’s disallowed goal against Manchester United.
Worrall is 13/8 with Sky Bet and Boly is 2/1 to get at least one shot in the player shot market. Both prices look great – and I’m backing a 4/5 bid with either one to get at least one hit against Chelsea as part of mine. 3/1 New Year’s Day double.