Villa to win again: Aston Villa vs Middlesbrough EFL Championship play-off semi-final

Aston Villa beat Middlesbrough 1-0 in the first leg, and return to their home turf looking to secure a spot in the play-off final at Wembley. Infogol’s Analyst uses expected goals (xG) to generate the best bets for the game.

Aston Villa (xG)

Aston Villa take a 1-0 lead into the second leg, after a dogged performance at the Riverside. Mile Jedinak’s goal (4%) gives them the advantage, though they were fortunate to come away with a win.

The game was one of very few high-quality chances, and a lot of pot-shots from distance, but the best chance of the game undoubtedly fell to Britt Assombalonga (42%), with Villa thankful for Sam Johnstone’s stop.

Over the course of the season, they have been the better of these two sides, and Infogol now calculates that Steve Bruce’s side have an 88.3% chance of progressing.

Middlesbrough Expected Goals (xG)

Middlesbrough will feel unlucky to be behind after the first leg, with their performance deserving of at least a draw (xG: MID 1.02 – 0.66 AST).

Tony Pulis’ side have it all to do now, and need to step up their creative efforts if they are to get themselves to Wembley.

Defensively, they continue to looks solid, but having to chase the tie may affect this, and they may get caught when throwing men forward.

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Aston Villa are in the driving seat, and are exactly where they want to be with Middlesbrough needing to come onto them. The 13/10 on offer for Villa to win the second leg looks good value, as they are expected to make it to Wembley in a comfortable fashion.

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Aston Villa to win @ 13/10

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