Stoke v Aston Villa: Bore draw the call at Britannia Stadium
Opposite an 18th-place side with the second worst defensive record in the division, Stoke would usually appear 11/10 bankers to overcome Aston Villa at the Britannia Stadium.
But so poor has been their recent run of form, which features just one victory in their last 12 league games, that it is difficult to back the Potters with any confidence in match betting markets here.
Paul Lambert’s men are similarly difficult to side with at 5/2, especially considering they have won only three games on the road this term, so the draw appears the best option as a 23/10 shot.
The last four encounters between this pair have ended level, with 1-1 and goalless stalemates ensuing two times apiece.
7/1 is available regarding another 0-0 draw, and given that Villa have notched only 17 times on the road this season, with the Potters finding the net on 18 occasions on their own patch, it seems a plausible outcome.
That said, Lambert’s side have most regularly drawn 1-1 this term, and with that scoreline emanating from a combined eight seasonal matches involving both teams, there is scope for another repeat at 11/2.
Meanwhile, total result markets offer a means to cover both of these aforementioned outcomes.
13/5 odds are available regarding the net bulging less than 2.5 times in a fixture that ends with parity between the teams, with that price looking very generous.
And more cautious punters could simply look to total goals markets in the hope of turning a profit on the match.
Judging by recent trends, it seems highly unlikely that more than 2.5 goals will stem from this clash, and so the 4/6 that two or less total strikes occur appears investment-worthy.
Those who do fancy at least one goal though, could do worse than to look at the visitors’ ranks when attempting to identify a first scorer.
Christian Benteke has bagged seven times in his last eight appearances, breaking the deadlock on three occasions across this period, and Villa’s 18-goal hitman is 11/2 favourite to open the scoring here too.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.