The King Power hosts an intriguing clash as the Premier League’s surprise package Leicester City face the Premier League’s surprisingly bad Everton.
A formality? A home banker? Not necessarily; historically, this is the type of match where the unfancied Toffees have sprung a surprise win and only three defeats in their last 10 visits to Leicester (W2, D5).
Can history repeat itself? Everton are in disarray with manager Marco Silva is under pressure seemingly one game from the axe, saved by a lack of suitable replacements.
Brendan Rodgers has no such worries. Five consecutive wins, no goals conceded in four; second in the table. Everything is rosy in the Foxes garden.
Unbeaten at home in eight, Leicester will be confident of beating an Everton side whose win at Southampton was their first in eight away games.
Home banker, it is. And to think, none of this featured in our 2019/20 Premier League preview!
Leicester City vs Everton Predictions
There is no doubt that the first half of 2019/20 has exceeded Leicester City’s expectations but there are currently few signs of them faltering.
The obvious concern for their campaign is the fitness of Jamie Vardy but he is gambolling across Premier League pitches, ruthlessly punishing defences for weaknesses and mistakes. The former England man has 12 in 13 appearances thus far, including seven in his last five games, scoring in each.
To put it into perspective, Vardy has scored one less goal than the entire Everton squad has managed in the Premier League this season. Few would bet against him equalling or bettering that record this weekend.
The Foxes strength lies in their teamwork. Defensively, Brendan Rodgers has organised them into a cohesive unit and by some distance, relatively speaking, they are top flight’s most miserly team.
It helps that until Jonny Evans departed with injury against Brighton, their back four remained largely unchanged in all 13 Premier League games.
Çağlar Söyüncü and Ricardo Perreira are ever-present, Evans has missed just 28 minutes of action with Ben Chilwell featuring in 11 of the 13 games. The settled nature shows on the pitch as they combine into a ferocious unit.
The statistics make startling reading. Four consecutive clean sheets with only league leaders Liverpool scoring more than once against them. An Everton side struggling for goals is in for a tough afternoon at the King Power.
The Toffees have scored more than one goal in only four Premier League games this season (W3, L1) although they have reached that benchmark in both their last two away games (W1, L1). The 2 – 1 win at Southampton ended an eight-match winless away streak (D3, L4) stretching back to April.
It was a rare bright spot for a team which has lost six of the last nine (W2, D1). Just to make life interesting for beleaguered Everton boss Marco Silva, the Toffees face Liverpool, Chelsea, Manchester United and Arsenal in their fixtures in the immediate fixtures after this game.
The biggest issue facing Everton is concentration. Leicester’s strength is their stamina; 23 of their 31 goals came in the second half of their 13 matches.
Disturbingly, Everton, on average, concede their first goal in the 41st-minute of a game. It’s not a good look when you’re opposition scores heavily in the second forty-five minutes.
It’s tough to make a case for an away win but few eyebrows will be raised if Everton make Leicester work hard for their three points.
Leicester City vs Everton Head to Head
After 20 years when they could barely buy a win facing Everton, Leicester are closing in on the Toffees in the head-to-head with 36 wins to 42. The remaining 32 of their 110 meetings finished all-square.
Leicester are slightly ahead in the last ten meetings (W5, D1) and at home, the results have been equally close (W3, D5).
Curiously, the last five meetings at Leicester has seen one of the teams score two or more goals but last season was the first in three to see over 2.5 goals. At least one of the halves has seen two goals in that run of fixtures (2 first half, 2 equal first and second, 1 second half).
Everton won last season’s corresponding fixture 2 – 1, with Gylfi Sigurdsson grabbing the winner close to time after Richarlison and Ricardo Perreira traded first-half goals.
Leicester City Team News
Jonny Evans recent problems with cramp aren’t likely to force him to miss this fixture leaving Matty James as the Foxes only absentee.
Everton Team News
Marco Silva’s injury worries are likely to ease with Bernard and Fabian Delph expected to return to the matchday squad.
Jean-Philippe Gbamin, Andre Gomes and Cuco Martina remain sidelined for the foreseeable future.
Leicester City vs Everton Betting Tips
Nobody will be surprised that Leicester are odds-on favourites in Novibet’s matchday odds at 67/100, with Everton sitting 43/10 outsiders. Five of the last ten meetings in the East Midlands ended all-square and the draw in this one is 59/20.
In the eight games in which he has scored, Jamie Vardy netted the opening goal on four occasions making his 14/5 odds for the First Goal seem relatively long. At 3/4, Vardy is a safe bet in the Anytime Goalscorer market.
Vardy, however, will garner a lot of defensive attention and Everton may pack their defence to neutralise him. In those circumstances, the unsung goalscorers are worth a look at. Ayoze Perez at 6/4 in the Anytime market with Youri Tielemans an enticing 59/10.
The Foxes won their last four games by a 2 – 0 scoreline. If history repeats itself, the correct score odds on that are 13/2.