Aston Villa vs. Wolves Odds, Picks & Predictions: How To Bet Saturday’s Premier League Match
Neville Williams/Aston Villa FC via Getty Images. Pictured: Aston Villa star Ollie Watkins.
- Aston Villa hosts Wolves in a crucial Premier League showdown Saturday in the latest edition of the West Midlands Derby.
- The Villans are going to be minus star Jack Grealish, who has been instrumental in their success.
- Anthony Dabbundo details why he thinks there won't be a ton of scoring at Villa Park below.
Aston Villa vs. Wolves Odds
|Aston Villa Odds||+143|
|Over/Under||2.5 (+114 / -141)|
|Day | Time||Saturday | 12:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds as of Friday evening via DraftKings.|
While Sunday’s Manchester Derby is taking up all the headlines this Premier League weekend, Aston Villa and Wolves meet Saturday in the fierce West Midlands Derby.
Both teams are safely in mid-table at this point, with Aston Villa fighting for a chance at a Europa League berth. However, the Villans will — once again — be without star attacking midfielder Jack Grealish and face the tough task of breaking down this possession-averse visiting side.
The Villans have seen some defensive regression in my numbers since reaching as high as sixth in my league power ratings. They appeared as potential top-four challengers earlier this season as well.
Still, Aston Villa’s expected-goals numbers are impressive. The Villans rank sixth best in overall xG difference, seventh in attack and seventh in defense. Aston Villa is the better team in this matchup, with it likely controlling the possession and flow against Wolves.
However, the absence of Grealish cannot be ignored. He leads England’s top flight in progressive carries, plus he’s second in expected assists and the perfect player to lead the Aston Villa counterattacking style.
The club has been most vulnerable against teams with excellent ball-progressing central midfielders who can easily play through their midfield, which is the weakest part of this Aston Villa team. It’s why the Villans tactically try to bypass it in the attack and get the ball to Grealish. Wolves are not the team to exploit them that way, though.
The visitors’ defensive numbers have slipped this season, hence their fall down the table, but their style has not changed much.
Nuno Espirito Santo’s men will sit back and let their opponents have the ball before looking to break out and counter quickly. The problem all campaign with this is that Wolves lost Raul Jimenez on their attack. Now, they mostly have a bunch of ball progressers and wide forwards with no one to get into the box to be on the end of crosses.
Wolves have tried young, new signing Fabio Silva and loanee William José, but neither have really improved the their attacking output.
Wolves’ defense completely shut off the Villa ball progression into the final third in the reverse fixture. There were plenty of shots from both sides, but no clear scoring chances, because both defenses are built to allow plenty of shots, but not many major opportunities.
Betting Analysis & Picks
Like Aston Villa, Wolves are in the bottom half of possession percentage on average. Neither team will love to have the ball in this match, and both teams’ defensive weakness is not easily exploitable by the opposing attack.
When these sides last played, there were zero big scoring chances created from open play and the Villans won on a stoppage-time penalty.
This is likely to be a game with few top scoring opportunities. For this reason, I’ll play the under on the alternative total of 2.25 goals at -110 or better, but 2.5 is also playable at -140 or better as well.
Pick: Total Under 2.25 Goals (-110 or better)