WHEN the Argyle side step out onto the pitch at St James’ Park in this weekend’s eagerly anticipated fixture against Exeter City......they might take some small comfort knowing they are the slight favourites to win at 13/8 with League sponsors Sky Bet.
The Pilgrims go into this weekend’s derby on the back of an impressive three-game winning run and, having beaten their Devon rivals 3-0 at Home Park earlier this season, will be hoping to claim all three points. Thirteen years, five months and two days (if anybody’s counting) may well have passed since Argyle’s last win at St. James Park, but a 3-0 win this weekend is available at a rather tempting 28/1. A repeat of our last victory - a memorable 3-2 win - at Exeter is priced at a huge 50/1!
Argyle manager John Sheridan has reiterated in his press conference this week how important it will be to score the first goal this weekend and having plundered three goals in as many games, Lewis Alessandra – as you might expect - features prominently when it comes to the game’s first goal scorer. The forward is available at 13/2 while strike partner Reuben Reid – who is currently fourth among the league’s top goal scorers – remains the firm favourite at 9/2.
Another Pilgrim who has come close to finding the back of the net on a number of occasions in recent weeks is on-loan midfielder Olly Lee. Sky Bet are backing Lee, whose one-month loan deal expires following the final whistle, to score at any time at 7/2.
If you’re a fan of the stats, here’s one for you: statistically speaking, City have kept a clean sheet in just 9% of all their league fixtures this season, which is the worst of any team in the division. Comparatively, Argyle boast the joint highest percentage at 52% and have maintained a clean sheet in their last three fixtures. The home side are 2/5 to concede at least one goal while the Greens are 13/8 to extend their run of clean sheets to four.
That has to be worth a punt, right?
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