Premier League Odds, Picks, Prediction: Aston Villa vs. Southampton EPL Betting Preview (March 5)
Alex Livesey – Danehouse/Getty Images. Pictured: Aston Villa standout Ollie Watkins.
- Aston Villa welcomes Southampton to Villa Park for Saturday's Premier League showdown.
- The visiting Saints are unbeaten in their last five matches (three wins and two draws), but the Villans are fresh off a win entering this affair.
- Nick Hennion breaks down the meeting below and details why he's expecting plenty of goals in this meeting.
Aston Villa vs. Southampton Odds
|Aston Villa Odds||+130|
|Over/Under||2.5 (-130 / -110)|
|Day | Time||Saturday | 10 a.m. ET|
|How To Watch||USA Network | fuboTV|
|Odds updated via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute soccer odds here.|
Call it the “mid-table mediocrity” derby when Southampton travels to Aston Villa on Saturday searching for its third consecutive victory in this Premier League showdown.
The Saints will arrive at Villa Park unbeaten in their last five matches (three wins and two draws), plus they’ve earned a result in four of their last five road fixtures.
Meanwhile, Villa put an end to a three-match winless run last week against Brighton & Hove Albion, as manager Steven Gerrard’s squad earned a 2-0 victory on the South Coast.
The reverse fixture at Saint Mary’s Stadium belonged to Southampton, who earned a 1-0 shutout win in former manager Dean Smith’s final match in charge of Aston Villa. Including that victory, Southampton has won four of the last five meetings with Aston Villa.
Aston Villa Seeking Consistency Under Gerrard
The last few outings have produced a mixed bag of results for Aston Villa, which arrives at this fixture 2-4-2 (W-L-D) in its last eight matches.
Like its record, the underlying metrics for manager Gerrard’s side have been somewhat inconsistent. For its attack, the xG outputs have ranged from 0.4 to 2.0, while its defensive performances have stretched from 0.4 to 2.8 so far. Overall, Villa’s respective averages for its offense and defense across those eight fixtures are 1.14 xG per 90 minutes and 1.18 xGA/90 minutes, per fbref.com.
That said, the home performances for Villa have improved under Gerrard. In seven games at Villa Park under the former Rangers boss, the Villans are averaging 1.31 xG per 90 minutes, which is 0.35 xG/90 minutes higher than in its five home contests under Smith.
However, Villa has also conceded at least one xG in six consecutive home fixtures and could see some negative regression soon. As it stands, the Villans own a +0 home goal differential against a -2.3 xGDiff thus far.
Most of that over-performance can be attributed to Villa’s attack, which has scored 20 goals on just 14 xG at Villa Park.
All that said, the one final piece of good news for potential Villa backers is its record against the five sides immediately above it in the current table. In six such fixtures, the Villains are 4-2-0 (W-L-D) and have two consecutive home wins against such opponents.
Southampton Offense Firing on All Cylinders
Whereas Aston Villa has been playing inconsistent football of late, Southampton has produced a flaming-hot run of results.
The Saints are unbeaten in five league matches — three of which came against Big Six clubs — and are creating 1.94 xG per 90 minutes, per fbref.com.
However, a majority of those fixtures came at home for the Saints, who are statistically a far weaker side away from Saint Mary’s Stadium. As it stands, manager Ralph Hassenhutl’s side owns a +5.3 xGDiff at home vs. a -5.3 road xGDiff this season.
Further, even though positive regression could be in order, the Saints own the third-worst road xGA output, placing it ahead of only Norwich City and Leeds United. Plus, Southampton has earned points in three of its last four road fixtures despite losing three of four in the xG metric.
Yet, there’s another angle in which Southampton could see positive regression.
Hassenhutl’s side has experienced a good bit of bad luck away from home against sides below them in the table. In five such games, the Saints hold a -2 goal differential on a +1.4 xGDiff and have dropped points in two games in which it won the xG battle.
Betting Analysis & Pick
Even though the first fixture was a low-event match, I’m of the opinion this meeting could feature goals.
We know Southampton struggles to play good defense away from home. It has only kept one of 13 opponents under one xG and should concede at least once to a Villa attack that has gotten on the board in all but one home game under Gerrard.
That said, I don’t know how Villa’s defense slows down this version of Southampton’s attack. We know Villa isn’t great against pressure — it ranks 12th in successful pressure percentage against — and will likely struggle against a Southampton side that sits fourth in the opposing category.
And for as bad as Southampton’s defense is on the road, its attack has played well. Entering this matchup, the Saints sit sixth in total road xG this season.
For those reasons, I believe we could see a high-scoring contest between these sides and I’m happy to lay some juice on the total clearing 2.5 goals.
Pick: Total Over 2.5 Goals (-130)