Premier League Betting Picks, Predictions, Preview: Projections & Best Bets, Including Chelsea vs. Leicester City (Nov. 20-21)

Premier League Betting Picks, Predictions, Preview: Projections & Best Bets, Including Chelsea vs. Leicester City (Nov. 20-21) article feature image
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Tim Keeton/Pool/AFP via Getty Images. Pictured: Leeds United standouts Raphinha and Jack Harrison embrace after Harrison’s goal.

The international break is over, which means the Premier League has made its awaited return.

Before the hiatus, there was some drama across England. The first situation featured Manchester City dominating Manchester United in their latest derby. Then, Chelsea was held to a draw with Burnley at Stamford Bridge, while Liverpool suffered its first loss of the season on the road at West Ham United.

Another 𝗺𝗮𝘀𝘀𝗶𝘃𝗲 result for this Club ✊⚒

Highlights of our 3-2 win over Liverpool ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/78LpQ1KWbH

— West Ham United (@WestHam) November 7, 2021

This weekend’s matches are headlined by a clash for fourth place, with, Arsenal traveling to Anfield to face Liverpool. There are a couple other intriguing matchups as well, with Chelsea having to face its first tough test in more than a month in a match at Leicester City. Also, West Ham heads to Molineux Stadium to battle with a very good Wolves side.

If you’re new to our soccer coverage, I will be providing my projections for every Premier League match, along with every other game from Bundesliga, Serie A, La Liga and Ligue 1, plus Champions League and Europa League when they’re in action.

If you’d like to read more about how I determine my projections, you can check it all out here.

You can use these projections to identify betting value on current lines, plus follow me in The Action Network App to see any bets I make during the week.

Premier League Projections

Best Bets

Leicester City vs. Chelsea

Leicester City Odds +380
Chelsea Odds -130
Draw +275
Over/Under 2.5 (+100 / -115)
Day | Time Saturday | 7:30 a.m. ET
How To Watch NBCSN | fuboTV
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

It’s finally time to fade Chelsea. They completely dominated Burnley and got an undeserving 1-1 draw. Now, Chelsea is finally going to have to face a team with some offensive firepower.

Chelsea this season has allowed four goals in the Premier League off of 10.83 xG and have scored 27 goals off of 21.73 xG. Negative regression is coming at some point for Chelsea and on the road out of the international break against an improving Leicester squad is a likely spot where it can happen. 

Leicester has turned a corner offensively and they’re much better at the King Power stadium than they are on the road, boasting a +1.95 expected-goals differential at home versus a -1.99 xGDiff in away fixtures. Leicester is also currently fifth in NPxG this season.

Where Leicester has been at their best is when manager Brendan Rodgers has them playing out of a 3-4-1-2 formation with any combination of Patson Daka, Kelechi Iheanacho and Jamie Vardy up top. That allows James Maddison to play his natural No. 10 role. When Leicester sets up that way, which has been for about 240 minutes this season, they have a +2.35 xGDiff and that’s the only formation they have a positive xGDiff playing out so far (see below).

(graphic via understat.com)

So, I love Leicester to get a result against a Chelsea side due for negative regression. I have the Foxes’ spread of +0.5 projected at +105 odds, so I like them at +0.5 at +120 odds via DraftKings and will make it my top selection.

Pick: Leicester City +0.5 (+120)


Wolves vs. West Ham

Wolves Odds +200
West Ham Odds +145
Draw +230
Over/Under 2.5 (+105 / -125)
Day | Time Saturday | 10 a.m. ET
How To Watch USA Network | fuboTV
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

Probably the most shocking result of the last round of matches was Wolves getting thoroughly dominated by Crystal Palace.

Wolverhampton does have fantastic defensive numbers in the English top flight, including: fourth in NPxG allowed; fifth in shots per 90 allowed; and, third in big scoring chances allowed. However, in their 11 matches, they’ve only faced three offenses inside the top 10 in xG and none were inside the top five, which is where West Ham is currently located.

The Hammers are playing so unbelievable good right now. They barely finished behind Liverpool in the xG column, despite earning the 3-2 victory. Coincidentally, that match marked the first time they lost the xG battle since their Sept. 19 game against Manchester United.

With Michail Antonio up top, West Ham is averaging 1.83 xG per match, plus they rank third in shots per 90 minutes and fifth in big scoring chances. However, Wolves has the best pressure success rate in the league and West Ham is fourth in Offensive PPDA, so they will be able to pass through the press and find a lot of open areas going forward. 

A beautiful team goal finished off by Jarrod Bowen 😍 pic.twitter.com/c27cVe3nD5

— West Ham United (@WestHam) November 1, 2021

Defensively, West Ham does have a concern in this matchup. The Hammers are eighth in big scoring chances allowed, while Wolves is third in that same category on the offensive side. Also, West Ham is 17th in crosses completed into their own penalty area, per fbref.com.

So, Rayan Aït-Nouri and Nélson Semedo getting forward could be able to find Raúl Jiménez in the box for a few chances because West Ham is pretty average in aerial duals won, per fbref.com

Also, Declan Rice is questionable, which would be detrimental for West Ham trying to stop Wolves in transition. 

I have 2.73 goals projected for this match, so I love the total over 2.5 goals at +105 odds on DraftKings in this contest.

Pick: Total Over 2.5 Goals (+105)

Newcastle vs. Brentford

Newcastle Odds +165
Brentford Odds +175
Draw +230
Over/Under 2.5 (+100 / -115)
Day | Time Saturday | 10 a.m. ET
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Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

This is a fantastic matchup for Brentford, who might be the new Brighton & Hove Albion. The Bees are currently sitting in 14th place with a +5.31 NPxGDiff, which is fifth in the league. They lost to Norwich City right before the break, but held a 2.92-1.24 xG advantage and created three huge chances inside the six-yard box, but only scored on one of them.

(graphic via infogol.net)

Now, they’ll get to face another defense just as bad as Norwich because Newcastle United is allowing goals left and right. They do have a new manager in Eddie Howe, who formally managed Bournemouth, but it’s going to take some time and new players to fix their defensive woes. What’s shocking is Newcastle normally plays out of a very defensive formation and they’re still allowing 1.94 xG per match. 

The Magpies have spent more than 400 minutes out of a 5-3-2 setup this season, but is allowing 2.39 xG per 90 minutes. So, that’s how bad their defense has been. They’re also dead last in the league in big scoring chances allowed, which is a problem against Brentford. The Bees’ offense is built on creating a few high quality chances.

Offensively, Newcastle hasn’t been able to to anything either, as they’re 19th in NPxG, 17th in shots/90 minutes and 19th in box entries. Plus, Brentford is top six defensively in NPxG allowed and shots conceded per 90 minutes.

Newcastle is also 19th in pressure success rate allowed and last in Offensive PPDA, and Brentford loves to press and try to win the ball up high The Bees  press at the seventh-highest rate and sit first in ball recoveries, per fbref.com.

I have Brentford projected as a slight favorite, so there’s value on the visiting side via the Draw No Bet line at -105 odds on DraftKings in this contest.

Pick: Brentford — Draw No Bet (-105)

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Spurs vs. Leeds

Spurs Odds -140
Leeds Odds +350
Draw +310
Over/Under 2.5 (-130 / +110)
Day | Time Sunday | 12:30 p.m. ET
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Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

Tottenham wasn’t impressive in their first league match under new manager Antonio Conte.

Spurs only created 0.85 xG in a 0-0 draw with Everton. They also didn’t have a shot on target, and only generated 12 touches in Everton’s penalty area. Conte didn’t play out of his usual 3-5-2 system against Toffees. Instead, he opted for a 3-4-2-1 setup, so it’ll be interesting to see if he continues with that formation.

I know Conte just started and Tottenham will improve, but their numbers this season have been really bad. The club is only creating 0.97 NPxG per match, which is 16th in the league despite having what some people are calling the best striker in the Premier League in Harry Kane. However, Kane has only scored one goal and has a 0.23 xG/90-minute scoring rate in 10 appearances.

Spurs are also 19th in shots per 90 minutes, 15th in big scoring chances and 15th in penalty area entries. As we currently stand, this team is a bottom half of the table side. Sure, they will get better under Conte, but right now they’re way overvalued, because I think Leeds United is starting to turn the corner. 

Leeds, who has been the better side in their last three matches, really outplayed Leicester and Wolves, which is impressive. Defensively, Marcelo Bielsa’s side is still 16th in NPxG allowed, but they’re eighth in big scoring chances allowed, fifth in box entries conceded and second in cross completed into their own penalty area. So, they’re just allowing a high volume of low quality chances. 

Leeds’ high press should be able to be effective against a Tottenham side that hasn’t been good versus pressure this season. Leeds is first in the league in PPDA and second in pressure success rate, while Tottenham is 13th in pressure success rate allowed, per fbref.com

That said, I think Tottenham is way overvalued in this spot. I only have Spurs projected at +114 odds, so I love Leeds getting +0.5 on the spread line at +120 odds on DraftKings and will make it my top pick.

Pick: Leeds +0.5 (+120)

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