Premier League Week 9 Betting Preview: Should Bettors Avoid Draws?
@ManUtd. Pictured: Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho
- Premier League Week 9 action kicks off Saturday morning at 7:30 a.m. ET with a clash between Manchester United and Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
- There have yet to be any big upsets in the EPL this season, and draws have cost bettors dearly (-22 units).
- After analyzing the betting market for each match, I've picked out two value plays to make.
The international break is a complete buzzkill for soccer fans, but there’s plenty to be excited about once it’s over.
The very first matchup of the weekend will be full of drama between Jose Mourinho’s former club (Chelsea) and current club (Manchester United) — though “current” may not apply much longer to Mourinho and Man U considering with the mounting speculation that he’ll be sacked.
Bettors should also expect a flurry of goals this weekend. Using our Bet Labs historical database, we can easily see that overs have hit at a 57.7% rate when both teams have 10+ days off between games.
2018-19 Season Trends
All three moneyline types (home, away, draw) are in the red this season, but draws have been the worst bet overall.
This season has also been a colossal struggle for big underdogs, and we’ve yet to see one major upset: teams closing +500 or higher on the moneyline have failed to win all 39 matches this season, meaning if you wagered $100 on every sizable dog, you’d be down $3,900.
Will things be different in Week 9? By analyzing the betting market and historical data, I’ve picked out two value plays to make for this weekend.
2018-19 Season Record: 8-19-1 (-5.53 units)
Brighton at Newcastle (Saturday, 10 a.m. ET, NBC Sports Gold)
- Newcastle Odds: +120
- Brighton Odds: +292
- Draw Odds: +221
- Over/Under: 2 (o-115)
This won’t be a match that catches the eyes of neutrals, but there’s surely value to be had.
Newcastle still haven’t won a match in the EPL this season and are tied for last with just two points. Brighton, on the other hand, have been solid and competitive in every game so far. Yet despite their differences in form, Newcastle enter as the slight home favorites.
What caught my attention is the low over/under. Historically, draws have earned a 40% return on investment when the total closes at 2, and all indications point to this total staying right where it is.
Oddsmakers clearly don’t expect to see a shootout between Newcastle and Brighton, and we could be looking at a 0-0 or 1-1 final.
The Bet: Draw +221
Liverpool at Huddersfield (Saturday, 12:30 p.m. ET, NBC)
- Liverpool Odds: -303
- Huddersfield Odds: +1055
- Draw Odds: +435
- Over/Under: 2.5 (o-111)
We already know that overs have been incredibly successful after the international break, but what if we pinpoint games even further?
Again, using our historical Bet Labs database, we’re able to discover that overs hit at a 61.5% rate when there’s a big home underdog. That’s certainly the case for Saturday afternoon with one of the league’s worst clubs (Huddersfield) hosting Liverpool.
The one thing that worries me about blindly tailing this system is the health of Liverpool’s forwards. Both Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane are questionable for Saturday which would certainly hinder the bet, but I’ll still be rolling with it.
The Bet: Over 2.5 (-111)
Biggest Line Moves
- Wolves are a trendy pick, just like Week 8, and their moneyline odds have moved from +102 to -131.
- Bournemouth have also seen a considerable shift and they’re essentially even money to beat Southampton.
Odds are always on the move until kickoff, so be sure to follow all the latest lines and betting percentages here.
Most Lopsided Betting %
- Tottenham, Bournemouth and Wolves are the most popular moneyline bets of the weekend. Spurs have a road match at West Ham, while Bournemouth and Wolves both play at home.
- Brighton-Newcastle Draw (+221)
- Liverpool-Huddersfield Over 2.5 (o-111)