Aston Villa v Bolton: Draw to dampen strugglers’ spirits
Both teams are desperate for three points but this looks set to end in a bore draw
A relegation dog-fight is on the cards at Villa Park as Owen Coyle’s Bolton come calling as 11/4 outsiders to claim the win that would see them just a point away from survival, with a game in hand on those above them.
The Lancashire side have beaten Wolves, Blackburn and QPR in recent weeks and seem to perform well against the teams around them, and they will be looking for a seventh win against fellow bottom six clubs.
Alex McLeish’s men are only five points clear of the drop zone themselves and defeat here will see them commonly touted as relegation candidates.
They have failed to win in their last six, but the home side can take heart from the fact they have only lost twice at home to the Trotters in their last eleven meetings, and they are evens to record a much-needed victory here.
The draw is the outcome that should draw the most attention at 12/5.
The Villans have drawn three of their last four outings, including last weekend’s goalless showing against Sunderland.
The visitors also drew last time out, and when it is considered half of the fixtures between these two in the last 9 seaons have resulted in stalemate, it looks sensible to opt for a repeat of that outcome.
More specifically punters may wish to look to the 0-0 scoreline priced at 8/1.
The hosts have only scored eight in their last 11 games and have drawn three of their last four, as well as sharing the spoils on 15 occasions this term.
Wanderers themselves have failed to find the target in two of their last three matches.
Bolton have also been level at half-time in 13 of their fixtures in this campaign while Villa have been tied at the break in 15 contests, so a draw at the half-time whistle and after 90 minutes looks good at 7/2.
A point here would leave both managers under pressure, with McLeish 7/2 to be the next Premier League manager to leave his post and Coyle at 9/1.