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The Monday Report - respect Lyle Taylor...

Monday 9th November 2020

In Across the Leagues today:

  • Penalty theme continues…
  • Don’t mess with Messi…
  • Standout stats – Cards and Corners…

The Monday Report – respect Lyle Taylor…

Another weekend, another stack of dogy VAR decisions, dubious handballs, and penalty kicks…

I’ll let YouTube, Twitter, Match of the Day and Sky Sports deal with all the replays and head-scratching.

From a betting point of view, one thing you and I can continue to pay attention to is the abundance of penalties in the game right now…

If we look at the top of the Premier League Top Goalscorer table, for example, we can see that two of the four men tied in first place have been prolific from the penalty spot:

  • Mo Salah (Liverpool) – 3 of his 8 league goals have been penalties
  • Jamie Vardy (Leicester) – 5 of his 8 goals have been pens

Vardy scored another penalty on Sunday, but also missed one in Leicester’s 1-0 win over Wolves. An 18/1 Each Way selection for us at the start of the season, the Foxes striker is currently joint-top of the 2020/21 Top Goalscorer chart, and down to 6/1 in the betting.

Missed penalties were a bit of a theme over the weekend…

As well as Vardy seeing his second attempt saved, plenty of other top names failed from the spot, too.

With the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic (AC Milan), Kevin De Bruyne (Man City), our old mate Wout Weghorst (Wolfsburg), and Antoine Griezmann (Barcelona) all having to turn away with their head in their hands.

None of them would’ve been as embarrassed as Ademola Lookman, though. The Fulham youngster – who to be fair has been having a great season so far – attempted the audacious ‘Panenka’ penalty against West Ham… and failed, dismally. To make matters worse, that was the very last kick of the game – and his Fulham side lost, 1-0.

You look like a fool when you get those wrong. You look like a genius when they go in…

I saw a click-baiting internet article last week, saying that Lyle Taylor’s penalty technique was ‘disrespectful.’ I’ve linked to video clips of Taylor’s penalty approach in this column before. Basically, he takes a very slow, walking run-up. I don’t think it’s disrespectful. A bit arrogant, maybe. But if it works, it works. He’s not breaking any rules.

Taylor kept his cool with one of these slow-mo penalty kicks in Nottingham Forest’s last-gasp 2-1 win over Coventry in the Championship last Wednesday night. The 30-year-old Forest forward dispatching the penalty to win the game in the eighth minute of time added-on. You can watch the match highlights here (go to 1:35 mins for the pen).

Lyle popped up again with two more goals on Saturday, both from open play this time, in Forest’s 2-0 win against Wycombe.

With four goals in his last five games, our 20/1 Each Way pick for Championship Top Goalscorer has got himself up & running nicely at his new club now. Taylor sits one goal off the four Each Way places as we head into the International break.

Don’t mess with Messi…

The big two clubs in Spain are continuing to prove inconsistent in La Liga. Real Madrid lost 4-1 at 5/1 match underdogs Valencia. Barcelona won 5-2 v Betis, but it was 1-1 until Lionel Messi came off the bench at half time…

After teammate Griezmann had missed a penalty in the first half, Messi showed who the main man is, coming on and scoring not once but twice – including a successfully converted penalty of his own.

  • Messi has scored 6 goals in all competitions this season – and 5 of them have been penalties 

Tavernier at it again…

Rangers’ goal-scoring right-back James Tavernier was at it again on Sunday. Rangers won 8-0 (eight-nil) against Hamilton, keeping up their unbeaten run in all comps in 2020/21 (W17 D3 L0). Tavernier scored the last two goals of that thumping win, including one from the penalty spot.

The 29-year-old Rangers captain is joint-top of the scorer charts in the Scottish Premiership, with eight goals. Level with another player we’ve been following in Scotland, Aberdeen midfielder Lewis Ferguson.

  • Tavernier has scored 12 goals in 20 games in all comps – with 7 penalties

Standout stats – Cards and Corners…

Moving on from scorers and penalties, here are a couple of Cards and Corners stats that have caught my eye on our website today, with the latest weekend form in the book…

Vidal sees yellow again…

Arturo Vidal is Inter Milan’s most-carded player in the league this season, with three yellow cards from five starts in Serie A in Italy.

The famously fiery Chilean is the kind of player that looks like he could start an argument with a lamppost.

Overall, the 33-year-old former Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Juventus midfielder has been booked in five out of 10 appearances in all comps for Inter Milan this season. In the Champions League at Real Madrid last week, Vidal got the First Card of the game.

  • Vidal scored (penalty) and was booked in Chile’s last home game, a 2-2 draw v Colombia last month. Chile v Peru is their next fixture, this Friday night, in the latest round of South American Qualifying for World Cup 2022 

Seagulls on the corners…

On the Corners front, there’s a surprise front-runner in the Premier League right now…

  • Brighton have won the Most Corners in 7 of their 8 games so far, including 4 out of 4 at home

The most recent of those results was a 5-3 corners score for Brighton in a 0-0 draw with Burnley last Friday night. Adding to home flag-kick tallies of 6-2 v West Brom, 7-1 v Man Utd, and 4-3 v Chelsea.

Graham Potter’s side have also won the Most Corners away at Tottenham (4-5), Crystal Palace (2-5), and Everton (3-10).

The Seagulls are a team to keep an eye on in that market, especially if you can get odds-against prices for them.

  • You can view all our stats across 17 leagues on your members-only Across the Leagues website 

Rose-tinted redemption…

This evening, I’ll be sitting down to watch the last tie of the FA Cup 1st round, Oxford City v Northampton Town (BT Sport, 7.45pm)…

At the start of the season, striker Danny Rose was my 33/1 outside chance in the Top Goalscorer market in League Two. Unfortunately, that one won’t be providing any glory. In October, Rose moved up a division, from Mansfield in League Two to Northampton in League One.

Rose has found the net in two of his last four starts for his new club. In this evening’s FA Cup tie against non-league opposition, Danny is a top price 5/1 (6.0) to score First, and 5/4 (2.25) to score Anytime. If Rose manages to bed himself in at Northampton, he could repay faith in him in the weekly match-day markets.

That’s all from me today. I’ll be back tomorrow with more stats and analysis.

P.S
I’ve got a couple of players in my notes for League Two. More on those before this weekend’s games.

Enjoy the football…

Best wishes,

Oliver Upstone

Oliver Upstone

Across the Leagues