Premier League – last weekend in October

From the weekend’s fixtures, one game stands out for me in particular and that’s Tottenham v Man Utd.

Both teams are underperforming this season. Tottenham are sixth in the table but actually have a -4 goal difference, having scored just 9 goals all season in the league.

Only Brighton, one place above them and Wolves have the same poor scoring record in the top half of the table.

Brighton, only one place ahead can be said to be overperforming compared to expectations though. Man Utd on the other hand, for a team that was realistically able to outspend or at least compete with the league’s highest spenders are clearly not doing very well in 7th. How long either manager has left to correct things remains to be seen but for both teams the poor run of form can’t go on for too long.

At the start of the season virtually every prediction model and pundit had a top four of Man City, Chelsea, Liverpool and Man Utd (not necessarily in that order). The first three are are the top three with Man Utd the only serious underperformer.

In the table below you can see that our model favours Tottenham (we have home advantage included in our model), at 43% to win. With Man Utd on just 31%. The most likely score by far though is a 1-1 draw at 12.2% as an exact score.

Bookmakers Mean Odds (in the far column) show Man Utd as marginally favoured on 40.5% so almost the opposite of our model. All in all, with two out of form teams playing each other a draw does seem a realistic outcome.

The other game that looks quite interesting is the lunchtime kick off with Leicester v Arsenal. This also looks close. Our model slightly favours Leicester at 40%, with bookmakers having just 1.5% less confidence than that. Both teams have shown signs of improvement in recent weeks.

In fact overall, there is really not a great deal of difference in our model and bookmakers mean odds this week. With matches like Liverpool v Brighton and Man City v Palace favouring the home teams at over 75% minimum likelihood, it’s not surprising.