Brighton vs Aston Villa Preview & Betting Tips: Go For Goals

Danny WelbeckBrighton will look to improve on their already impressive Premier League position on Sunday (2pm). To do so, they’ll need to get the better of Aston Villa at the Amex Stadium. Can the visitors make up for their cup defeat in the week?

It has been a pleasing week for Brighton boss Roberto De Zerbi, who first watched his men battle their way to victory at Molineux last weekend. The Italian then looked on as his side went to The Emirates and defeated Arsenal in the League Cup on Tuesday evening. His team are scoring goals and winning games, and crucially, they are showing little fear, even when faced with the best teams in the league, as recent wins against both Arsenal and Chelsea show.

Let’s be honest, few teams will face Chelsea and score four goals this season, while very few look likely to return from the red half of North London with three goals and all three points, so it’s probably fair to say that this Brighton team is to be feared.

For Villa, it has been a mixed bag since Unai Emery took over a little more than a week ago. First up, they came flying out of the blocks to beat Manchester United at Villa Park, scoring three goals in the process. Though against the same opposition in the League Cup on Thursday evening, they struggled to deliver the same level of performance. Then again, they were away from home, playing a competition that is unlikely to be the priority. Plus, they scored two goals in defeat. Over the coming weeks, we will see what the newly appointed Spaniard has to offer as manager of a team looking to move towards the top half.

Moving in the right direction

The hosts have really shifted through the gears in recent weeks. Following what was a spirited but ultimately disappointing effort at the Etihad, the Seagulls could have gone into their shell, but no, quite the opposite has happened. De Zerbi’s men have kicked on by playing attacking football, taking the fight to anyone standing in their way. By scoring nine goals in three games against Chelsea, Wolves and Arsenal, The Seagulls have shown what they’re made of.

It is not just that they have been particularly efficient in front of goal, nor have they been fortunate. From a creativity point of view, the Seagulls have impressed, producing 20.8 expected goals this term. Only Man City, Arsenal, Spurs, Liverpool, and Newcastle have performed better in terms of xG for. When it comes to expected goal difference, they are the fourth-best team in the division. That is not a stat to ignore.

What have we seen from Villa under their new manager

It is hard to make such quick judgements. Unai Emery has had just two games to get Aston Villa going, but in those two games, we have seen one clear improvement. Under Gerrard, things had stagnated a little, especially in the final third, but in those two games under Emery, the Villans have really got going offensively. They have gone from scoring in just one game out of four to scoring five goals in two games.

Last weekend against United in the league, we saw a team that was proactive, a team capable of doing far more damage than they did towards the end of the previous manager’s reign. What the new boss will also have to do, though, is get his team to tighten up at the back. Sunday’s visitors have kept just one clean sheet in seven games. They have conceded more than once in four of those seven, including in each of their last three on the road.

Villa bossing this fixture in recent times

This fixture has yielded little joy for the Seagulls in recent times. They lost both home and away to Aston Villa last season, losing by two goals to nil when the pair met at Villa Park back in November 2021. In late February, Villa went to the south coast and recorded another two-goal victory. Brighton have now failed to score in each of their last three games against Sunday’s opponents. Moreover, they have never won a home game against Aston Villa, despite having had five bites of the cherry since the first clash at this venue back in 2016.

Goals, goals, goals

Those who like to bet on goals should not shy away from this fixture, as there is plenty to suggest that there’s more chance of the goals arriving than perhaps the early prices would have us believe.

For starters, Brighton cannot stop scoring right now. As touched on above, they have really hit their attacking stride in recent weeks, so much so that they’re producing numbers that are up there with the best in division. Moreover, their newfound cavalier approach seems to lend itself to high-scoring games, which is why each of their last four games has contained at least three goals. In fact, each of their last four matches has contained at least four goals.

The same can be said for Villa, who during the last week have re-found their scoring touch. Four or more goals have been scored in each of Villa’s last four, while ‘Over 2.5 Goals’ is a bet that has yielded a return in each of their last five in all competitions.

Welbeck to break his Premier League duck

Danny Welbeck is yet to get off the mark in the league this season, but he has been doing a lot of the right things, and after scoring in the League Cup on Tuesday, he is backed to get on the scoresheet against a Villa back-line that has given plenty away. After all, the forward is averaging 0.29 xG per 90 minutes, not to mention 2.49 shots.

So these are our BHAFC vs AVFC betting tips for this preview: