Aston Villa vs. Liverpool EPL 2010 Betting Picks + Odds
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Premier League 2010 Gambling Predictions
Matchup: Aston Villa v Liverpool
Date/Time: Monday, December 6, 2010 3:00 PM ET
Venue: Anfield, in Liverpool England
Money Line: Liverpool (-180) Aston Villa (+500) Draw (+280)
Point Spread: Liverpool -1
Over/Under: 2 ½
BET ON Villa vs. Liverpool HERE
Aston Villa boss Gerard Houllier will return to Liverpool, the club he managed between 1998 and 2004, looking to grab three-points as his Villans try to leapfrog over the Reds who are currently two points ahead on the league table.
Both sides are coping with injuries to key players, as Aston Villa will be without midfielder Barry Bannan and former Liverpool striker Emile Heske. Meanwhile, the Reds will need to find suitable substitutes for Captain Steven Gerrard who is likely to be at least another week away from returning from a hamstring injury sustained on England duty last month, and defenders Jamie Carragher and Daniel Agger.
Greece international Sotirios Kyrgiakos will take place in central defense for Carragher, and along with Martin Skrtel, will be the side’s only two senior centre-backs, which could create problems along the Reds backline.
The Villans will need to sustain a solid offensive attack in an effort to exacerbate pressure on the Liverpool defense, but will have to do it without the help of winger and sometimes second striker Ashley Young, who serves a one-match ban for accumulating five bookings this season.
Villa will also need to figure out Liverpool keeper Pepe Reina who seeks clean sheet number 100 in 198 league matches with the Reds. With a shut out on Monday, Reina would surpass current record holder Ray Clemence, who needed 217 league matches to reach the landmark.
Roy Hodgson, the latest Liverpool manager to find Anfield an unforgiving environment when the team fails to meet the high standards of the glory days, has lost his last two league matches against Villa – both while in charge of Fulham.
He will count on the efforts of Reina along with striker Fernando Torres, who after a dismal start to the 2010-11 season in both fitness and form, has returned to his old self with a brace in Liverpool’s 2-0 win over Chelsea followed by a lone goal in a 1-1 draw away to Wigan. The 26-year-old has hit 44 goals in 48 Premier League appearances at Anfield, and should be able to help lift his side to its fourth successive home win in league action.
Only one of the last seven meetings between Aston Villa and Liverpool has ended as a home win. Combined with key injuries and suspensions to both sides, this one has all the makings of a scoreless draw. However, with Reina’s top form between the sticks, the hostile environment of Anfield, and Torres recent return to top-flight form, I think the Reds find a way to grab three-points in this one.
Matt’s Free Prediction: Liverpool 1 – Aston Villa 0
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Matt Martz is a sportswriter for the Bakersfield Californian located in Central California. “ Football (soccer) is a game in which a handful of fit men run around for one and a half hours watched by millions of people who could really use the exercise.”