Sheffield United v Newcastle: Blades too sharp for poor travellers
United's strong home form and Newcastle's poor away one makes the hosts a bet alongside a corners wager, as a same-game multi-bet, says Jamie Pacheco...
Sheffield United v Newcastle Thursday December 5, 19:30
Wilder doing just about everything right
The likes of Brendon Rogers and Jurgen Klopp have been getting all the plaudits of late but the job Chris Wilder has done at Sheffield United can rival the lot of them.
With no real star names in the team, he's made them one of the hardest sides to beat and his seventh place in the table is nothing short of a minor miracle.
If there is just the one area of concern is that they've been just a little too reliant on Lys Mousset upfront. He's scored five and assisted three of United's last 11 goals and you get the feeling that if he were to get injured, they may be slightly found out. But that's just splitting hairs because there's so much else to be positive about.
Can Shelvey find some consistency at last?
The smart money is on there being three teams worse off than them come May and it's pretty fortunate for them that there are because they've been ok, but not great.
Then again, maybe avoiding relegation this season (even if just by a point) and a year under his belt at Newcastle may be exactly what Steve Bruce needs before trying to take them to the next level.
One of his major frustrations- like others before him- must be how to get the best out of Jonjo Shelvey. His wonder strike at home to Manchester City was a reminder of his ability but there's obviously a reason why he's constantly in and out of the side rather than a certain starter.
Expensive striker Joelington has so far been a massive disappointment. He's started all 14 games so far and a goal and an assist are all he has to show for his efforts.
Blades' price a tad short for our liking
It shows just how far the Blades have come that they're just 1.90 to win the game. It's worth remembering that they're a promoted side up against one who has been in the Premier League for the past three seasons (including this one) and who are used to being in this division more often than not.
Ignoring the head to head record between these sides because the last time they played each other was back in April 2010 (as Opta tell us), you can see why the hosts are so short. Their last three home games yielded seven points and that included the visits of Arsenal and Manchester United.
As for Newcastle, they've generally been hopeless on the road. As an example, they were thrashed 5-0 at Leicester and lost 2-0 at Villa Park just over a week ago in a game where they were completely out-played from start to finish.
Stats suggest at least one clean sheet is quite likely
You'll see worse prices this midweek than the 1.80 on 'no' when it comes to both teams scoring. 71% of United's home games have seen at least one side keep a clean sheet while for Newcastle it's 57% of their away games where one of the two have failed to score.
The slight fly in the ointment is that four of the last five games that Bruce's boys have played saw both teams score; but if you're a fan of the longer-term stats, you might just about have yourself a value bet.
Get on this same-game multi
Just because we decide not to lump on the hosts as a single, doesn't mean that we don't have to have them onside. They're 17/20 on the Sportsbook to win the game and with momentum, confidence and a strong home record, contrasting Newcastle's poor away one, we'll make the home win the first part of our same-game multiple.
Six of United's seven home games to date have had over 9.5 corners, as have six out of seven of Newcastle's away matches. For interest's sake, the one that didn't was away at Leicester which fell just one short.
So with those stats in mind, we can't expect the price on over 9.5 corners to be too generous. But at 4/11 it will just about do and combined with the home win, that comes to 2.62. And that, may just about be the best betting option of the game.