Sheff Wed vs Sheff Utd Match Preview

The Steel City derby returns to the scene this weekend after a five year absence. The Owls take on the Blades at Hillsborough in what should be an enthralling game with plenty of talking points. Infogol’s Analyst will aim to use expected goals (xG) and data points to select the best bets for the match.

 

Sheffield Wednesday

Last season’s beaten play-off semi-finalists have made a solid start to the new campaign. They were beaten in their opening game away at Preston, thanks to a dubious penalty, but are unbeaten in seven games since.

 

They had one of the best processes in the league last season, creating plenty of good chances and conceding few. Their squad remains more or less the same as last campaign, so are capable of maintaining their performances that saw them finish fourth last season.

 

The Owls’ process is good

 

Having been slow into their stride this term, they look to have found a good level of performance in recent weeks, which bodes well coming into such a huge game. Home wins against Nottingham Forest and Brentford were two of those games in which they generated a lot of high-quality chances.

 

Sheffield United

The League One Champions have settled very well into life in the Championship, winning five of their opening eight matches in the league. They appear to be a match for anyone, especially at Bramall Lane, but so far their underlying stats have been good – as well as their results.

 

The expected goal difference (xGD) is positive (0.5xGD) which is a good indicator of their performances so far. They have been fortunate in some matches though, Brentford and Sunderland are two examples, where they created very low-quality chances and managed to get the win.

 

Steady start for Blades

 

Defensively is where they have been most impressive, especially in recent games. In their last three matches their average expected goals against (xGA) has been 0.55xG, a very low figure. If you take all of their eight matches so far, their average increases slightly to 0.96xG, which is still an impressive figure for a newly promoted team. This is clearly the base of their success, and their defence will have to hold strong in this match if they are to get anything out of it.

 

Conclusion

This will be a feisty match both on and off the pitch, with a capacity crowd anticipated at Hillsborough. Both teams have started the season well, but a game of few goals is expected. The home team have been impressive in attack in recent matches, and should edge a close game.

 

Bets

Under 2.5 @ 4/6

Sheffield Wednesday to win @ EVS

 

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