Swansea v Aston Villa - Saturday 17:30, Sky Sports 1

Swansea’s boss, Francesco Guidolin, is hoping to return to the dugout following an illness that has led him to miss their last three games. However, his team has done well in his absence despite the setback at Bournemouth last weekend.

This isn’t one of the most exciting looking games this weekend and Swansea will probably be quite happy if that is how things play out. In their last seven home matches they’ve conceded more than once on just one occasion and kept four clean sheets. Against the lowest scoring team in the league, who have just five goals in their last 11 away matches the home defence should receive an easier time than last week. They’ve beaten the other two sides in the bottom three 2-0 and 1-0 here this season and three of the five visiting sides to score more than once against them have been the current top three. Excluding those three, nine of their 12 home games have had fewer than three goals while seven have had fewer than two.

Aston Villa won 1-0 at Bournemouth on the opening day but there’s not been much for their travelling fans to sing about since as they’ve picked up just three points from their last 14 away matches. Any remaining hope of a Leicester-styled recovery has also long since disappeared and there looks to be little fight left.

Swansea’s win price of 1.67 isn’t overly tempting and their general lack of goals means we want to avoid taking them on the handicap, with the winning margin a much better looking market. To win by exactly one goal is 3.5 and that has plenty of appeal.

Swansea’s last seven wins have all been either 1-0 or 2-1 scores and while it’s hard to see Villa scoring twice they have a decent chance of finding a single strike. Furthermore, there have been 18 matches since 2010/11 where a bottom-half side has hosted the bottom-of-the-table club between March and the end of the season and the away side has scored in all but two of those games. With 14 of 18 matches having at least three goals there is an argument that Villa will be able to throw off their shackles and so it could pay to take a contrarian view on the goals stats of both teams and back Over 2.5 or even Over 3.5. However, we’re not convinced either team has the personnel to really cut loose so we’ll stick with the winning margin market.

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Swansea to Win by One Goal - 1pt @ 3.5