Norwich v Leicester: Struggling Foxes shouldn't be that price
It's not easy making a case for the rock bottom side but with the Foxes out-of-form themselves, Jamie Pacheco likes the look of laying Leicester...
Norwich v Leicester Friday February 28, 20:00 Live on Sky Sports Football
The stats behind Norwich's struggles
I highlighted Norwich's struggles, uphill task and wondered about which players may be picked up in an end-of-season fire sale if they do go down this season in my Something for the Weekend column.
Results have been nothing short of disastrous for a while now and that shock 3-2 win over Man City looks a long, long time ago now.
The table tells its own story. They're not only bottom on points but also in a four-way tie for least goals scored (24) and are second-worst for most goals conceded (51) behind only Aston Villa. More significantly, no-one has lost more games than them (17) and no-one has won less than them (four).
Defeat here and it may just about be curtains for them.
Defender Christoph Zimmermann is likely to miss out with an injury but just about everyone else should be available from the regular starters.
Foxes' forwards out of nick
It's a good thing that Leicester went on such an excellent return earlier on in the season because both wins and impressive performances have dried up of late. It's now just one victory in their last six in the Premier League.
The main culprits are probably in attack, rather than defence. Jamie Vardy, Ayoze Perez and James Maddison are among the attacking players whose goals and assists have dried up of late and given this isn't a side where the goals tend to be shared around, that explains why results have taken a turn for the worse.
Still, they were a tad unlucky not to get anything from their game against Manchester City last week, so will see a match against rock-bottom Norwich as the best possible chance to get back to winning ways.
Why the Foxes shouldn't be that price
Results between these two show things have been pretty even over the past six or seven seasons.
They've played each other six times since the start of 2010/11 and there have been two wins for Norwich (4-3 and 3-2), three wins for Leicester including an FA Cup tie and earlier this season they drew 1-1 in the Foxes' backyard.
The visitors are 1.78 with the Canaries 4.70 and it's 4.30 about the stalemate.
Those stats I mentioned relating to Norwich don't paint a pretty picture but I'm not sure Leicester should be that price. It's just one win in eight for Vardy and co as we've said already and though there was no disgrace in drawing away at Wolves and at home to Chelsea, they're lacking that zip in attack and may also have lost some confidence along the way.
This is a match that means more to the hosts than it does to Brendan Rodgers' men but that's not my main reasoning behind opposing the favourites. Rather, it's that if you're going to be odds-on to win away from home in the Premier League, you need to be a very strong side in good form and high on confidence. For my money they fail on the second and third counts so I'm laying Leicester at 1.79.
'Overs' understandably short
69% of Norwich's home games have gone over 2.5 goals this season, as have 61.5% of Leicester's away matches this campaign. With three of the last four between these two in east Anglia going the same way, you can see why overs is a relatively strong favourite at 1.68.
It's not the worst value bet you'll see all weekend but it's also not good enough to warrant taking the risk at those odds.
Cantwell worth a look
We might well get goals here but it's not so easy working out which player or players might get them.
Both Vardy (8/13) and Teemu Pukki (11/10) have plenty of goals to their name this season but there haven't been many goals for them over the past few weeks, so those prices aren't particularly attractive.
Maddison is quite short as well at 12/5 for a man who hasn't scored in his last nine games. I always think Todd Cantwell has a goal in him but you'll be able to get better than the 5/2 that Sportsbook offer over on the Exchange, when the market matures.