Sunderland V Everton Betting: Saturday 26th December (Boxing Day)21st December 2009 / Matt
Sunderland V Everton
Saturday 26th December (Boxing Day) – 15:00 GMT
League Position: 10th
Recent Form: LLDLL
(Sunderland are without a win in the league for five games, losing four and drawing one)
Generally, if any side manages to score three goals on the road then surely a win goes without saying. However, not only did Sunderland not pick up three points on Saturday, despite scoring three times, they didn’t even register a single point, losing a 4-3 thriller in Manchester to Man City. Had Steve Bruce’s Black Cats took anything from that game then surely the morale within camp would have been sky high. Now, however, with Sunderland failing in their bid to claim any of the spoils after coming oh so close, will the spirit in camp get even worse after a dreadful run of form?
Sunderland’s home record was shaping up as a formidable one, that was until a festive December month kicked into life. Sunderland boast some very strong home form (5-2-2) but haven’t won at The Stadium of Light in their previous two visits, drawing 1-1 with bottom of the league Portsmouth, a game they were a mere minute away from victory in, and losing 2-0 to Aston Villa, a game they never looked likely of getting anything from. That’s now two home games without a win for Sunderland, their longest home baron run for the season, but Steve Bruce should be in an optimistic mood what with the arrival of an Everton side who haven’t won in six games, a run even worse than Sunderland’s.
While we are on the topic of win less runs, there’s no time like the present to discuss Sunderland’s recent shortage of wins. Their match day opponents maybe without a win in six games but Sunderland haven’t been performing a whole lot better of late, either, and are also without a win for a considerable amount of time – five matches. It has, though, been a difficult fixture period for Sunderland, with the likes of Arsenal, Man City, Fulham and Aston Villa, all testing their wits against Sunderland, although only Arsenal were beaten by Steve Bruce’s men.
However, what’s more concerning is that, despite Sunderland scoring three goals at the weekend against a City side who could, quite literally, concede any amount on their day, goals have been few and far between for Sunderland of late. In their previous five outings, since their defeat of Arsenal, Sunderland have managed just four goals, with three of those coming on Saturday. In this five match run, Sunderland have failed to score in three of those games, with Aston Villa, Wigan Athletic and Fulham, all successfully keeping Sunderland at arms length. Darren Bent struggled up front in his last home appearance, the 2-0 defeat by Aston Villa, but he was aided by Kenwyn Jones on Saturday and the pairs movement on and off the ball instantly turned them back into a dangerous attacking side. Jones should start up front once again on Saturday, which is a huge plus point for all Sunderland fans and backers – Rejoice!
League Position: 15th
Recent Form: LLDDD
(Everton are without a win in six games, three have been away fixtures, but have scored five goals in their last two away ventures)
It’s all gone Pete-Tong at Goodison, or David-Kenwright, if you’re looking for a lame football festive pun. We know injuries to key players has played a huge part in Everton’s demise this season, but to go from a top six team to a side struggling to avoid falling into the relegation zone, is some fall from grace. However, player performances haven’t been all that bad and it’s just a case of getting the big names back as soon as possible, but during a busy period where a big squad is imperative, David Moyes and Everton look more exposed and vulnerable than ever before.
It’s now been six games without a win for the Toffee’s, who haven’t experienced that winning feeling for well over a month now, league wise. However, results have began to steadily improve, although there still isn’t a win in sight. Three successive draws to Tottenham Hotspur (2-2), Chelsea (3-3) and the latest Birmingham City (1-1), all providing David Moyes with some positives, albeit not a winning positive. All three games were tough, especially the former two in which Everton worked hard in one (Chelsea) and rode their luck in the other (Tottenham).
A draw with Birmingham, however, wasn’t as creditable as some of their more recent draws but, a good point, nonetheless, as Birmingham are the leagues inform team at present, unbeaten in nine games now after the 1-1 draw at Goodison Park last Sunday. However, that will come as little consolation for an Everton side craving their first win in six outings.
Everton do, however, have a very easy fixture just over the horizon, a home match with a home sick Burnley two days later, so perhaps David Moyes should pull a Mick McCarthy by fielding the reserves and concentrating on getting all three points against Burnley, a ploy which worked perfectly for the Wolves manager. We can’t see David Moyes pulling a stunt like that, though, so it’s down to his under performers to pull out two big results within as many days.
Scoring goals hasn’t been a problem for Everton of late as they’ve scored in four of their previous five fixtures, with the Toffee’s managing two or more goals in three of those, coming against Hull City, Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea. Also, in eight away encounters thus far, Everton have only failed to score in two, with defeats at Burnley (1-0) and Man Utd (3-0). Three of their previous four away games has seen them score at least two goals, with three of their last five producing an overall game total of five or more goals. With Everton these days it’s goals galore.
Head-to-Head (Last 10):
Sunderland W: 0 Everton W: 7 Draw: 1
Wow – What a dominant h2h record Everton have over Sunderland, which should surely mean Everton have the mental edge heading into this fixture after eight unbeaten meetings with the Black Cats of the North. Even the one rare draw came at Goodison Park, which means Everton have won all four encounters at The Stadium of Light, a run stretching back nearly eight years. What’s more, all of Everton’s previous four victories at Sunderland have come to NIL, with 1-0 appearing three times and 2-0 once.
In eight meetings, Sunderland have managed a measly four goals but not one has come on home soil. It was two foreigners who scored in last seasons 2-0 victory for Everton, with Pienaar and Fellani getting on the score sheet. However, the game was marred with yellow cards, six in all, so perhaps a feisty encounter is to be expected.
Match Verdict: Draw – 3.30 Bet365
Neither side has stand out form, or form for that matter, and a draw looks a logical approach to a game we would steer well clear of from a betting perspective. The confidence in both sets of players won’t be at an all time high but rather at an alarming low and we can’t put forth a strong enough cash for either side. However, with Sunderland looking a more dangerous prospect with Kenwyn Jones back in the side, and with Everton scoring and leaking goals left, right and centre, surely a punt on there being goals looks a value bet, if not a profitable one .
Sunderland – 2.39 PaddyPower
Draw – 3.30 Bet365
Everton – 3.10 Boylesports
Fancy a challenge? – We think this game will have it’s fair share of goals but just how many will be scored? Sunderland had looked lethargic in front of goal before Kenwyn Jones showed up on the seen, with Sunderland scoring just one goal in four before Jones’ first game back for over a month against City, a game where Sunderland score three times. Everton, however, have been involved in their fair share of thrillers, as well, and their previous two away games have ended 3-3 and 3-2, with the latter a defeat to Hull City. With Sunderland regaining their fire-power up front and Everton’s back four as open as the nile, we should be treated to our fair share of goals on Saturday afternoon, but how many exactly?
Total Game Goals odds:
Exactly 0 – 9.50 SkyBet
Exactly 1 – 4.00 SkyBet
Exactly 2 – 3.25 SkyBet
Exactly 3 – 4.00 SkyBet
Exactly 4 – 6.50 SkyBet
Exactly 5 – 13.00 SkyBet
Six or more – 17.00 SkyBet
Our Challenge Pick – Exactly 4!
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