City to add to Stoke’s woes: Stoke vs Manchester City
Stoke take on Manchester City on Monday Night Football, with the home team far more desperate for the win than the visitors. Infogol’s Analyst previews the game using expected goals to generate the best bets.
Stoke Expected Goals (xG)
Stoke come into this game second from bottom after a run of just one win in 10 league games. They will not have fond memories of the reverse meeting of this fixture either, which ended in a 7-2 thrashing back in October, and Paul Lambert will be desperate to makes sure his side doesn’t suffer another heavy defeat.
The Potters are unbeaten in three games, though all have been draws. Taking a point against Brighton, Leicester and Southampton may seem like good results, but Stoke have in fact been fortunate on two occasions, as they continue to concede a host of chances (vs Leicester xG: LEI 1.8 – 0.5 STO, vs Southampton xG: SOU 1.2 – 0.7 STO).
In fact, they have the joint-worst defence in the league this season, according to xG, having conceded 51.1 in their 29 games so far. There have been signs of an improvement in the six games under Paul Lambert, with Stoke averaging 0.7 xGA less than before he was appointed, but this improvement will be put to the test against the league leaders.
Manchester City Expected Goals (xG)
Manchester City have been dominant to the point that this season’s title race has been a non-contest, and that was made more evident by how comfortably they beat Chelsea last weekend, with the reigning champions afraid to even attack the league leaders (xG: MCI 0.9 – 0.1 Chelsea).
Everyone is running out of superlatives for how good this City team are, and the expected goals completely agree. They have the best attack (69.3 xG) and best defence (22.0 xG) in the league, and their performances continue to remain very one-sided in City’s favour.
Sergio Aguero has once again been their number one marksman this season, but he is out for this game, so Gabriel Jesus is expected to return to the starting line-up. Before his injury, the Brazilian forward was playing exceptionally well and was averaging 0.8 xG per game, so expect him to have a say in this match.
Manchester City are expected to prove too strong for struggling Stoke in this game, and should rack up a big score once again. Infogol calculates that the most likely score line is 3-0, so that is selected, and with the Gabriel Jesus expected to get quite a few chances, he looks good value to score first.
Gabriel Jesus to score first @ 11/4
Manchester City to win 3-0 @ 13/2