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Plymouth Argyle vs Southampton Stats and Bet Builder Tips Preview


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Plymouth Argyle vs Southampton Stats and Bet Builder Tips Preview Featured Image

It was May 2011, there was a change of Pope from John Paul II to Benedict XVI, Osama Bin Laden was found, Brexit was just a twinkle in Nigel Farage’s eye, and it was the last time that Plymouth Argyle and Southampton met for a game of football, such a momentous occasion definitely warrants bet builder exploration.

This was in Southampton’s League One promotion season on their way back to the Premier League. Indeed, it would be fair to say that these clubs have experienced the opposite ends of the spectrum of the English Football League pyramid since that 2011 meeting. Whilst Plymouth spent over a decade bouncing around the bottom two divisions experiencing differing levels of competence at boardroom level, Southampton flew into the Premier League and stayed up there until last season’s relegation.

The Pilgrims’ support will be at peak levels for this match and Home Park will be bouncing, despite the early kick-off. Argyle had an incredible home record, in their League One promotion season they won 20 out of their 23 home fixtures, scoring 44 goals and conceding 16. They came back from losing positions, and consistently scored second half goals to get them those wins, demonstrating fitness, confidence, and tactical skill in order to do so.

There are also some great angles to build a bet builder with as well, which can add a little more interest to the game. Take on £50 in free bets for your Plymouth vs Southampton bet builder, thanks to Betfair‘s latest signup offer:

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Plymouth vs Southampton Predicted Lineups

MUMBA AND WHITTAKER READY TO POUNCE ON THE BREAK FOR PILGRIMS

Steven Schumacher has always been quite versatile with his formations, but the principles of play remain similar no matter the personnel or the formation that is put onto the field. The quick, direct transitional style of play employed by Plymouth, as well as a degree of technical skill in wide and attacking areas, will be what we see and will be epitomised by the likes of Bali Mumba and Morgan Whittaker.

The two new signings were crucial for Argyle to acquire, it also helps that both played for Schumacher’s team in the promotion campaign last season so have needed no time at all to settle in and make a difference.

Expect the defence to be a back four, but with full backs that are licensed to support attacks when they are on the break. The central midfielders are there to break up counter-attacks from the opposition and to feed the ball into their attacking players where possible. Ryan Hardie will be key to stretch the Southampton defence and in taking the ball when possible.

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AN ATTACKING, AGGRESSIVE, ARMSTRONG-HEAVY LINEUP FOR SAINTS

Russell Martin has used a few different systems in his body of work, but the desire to get attacking outlets into his team may lead to him following a Manchester City-style 4-3-3 with a couple of ‘free 8s’, expected to be Carlos Alcaraz and Stuart Armstrong. Both of these players are known to be shot monsters but are good in the press so it is understandable why they could be selected in these roles.

Kyle Walker-Peters has had an outstanding start to life in the Championship, displaying ability well above the level. Shea Charles is going to have to be super-athletic and tactically smart to be in the right position to cut off Argyle counter-attacks because he could be quite isolated in that midfield otherwise.

Adam Armstrong and Che Adams may play narrow, with Nathan Tella buzzing around in the wider channels. A. Armstrong has had a typically shot-heavy start in the Championship, though penalties have inflated those numbers.

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PLYMOUTH Argyle VS SOUTHAMPTON TEAM STATS

SCHUMACHER’S DRIVE TO SUCCESS BASED ON SLICK TRANSITION TACTICS

Plymouth Argyle’s tactical style is quite clear when assessing their statistical output. Their number of passes, in the early stages of the season, is the fifth least in the division, but the number of through passes is in the top eight. They don’t keep possession for the sake of it, they like to try and use the ball progressively.

The Pilgrims aren’t afraid to let fly either. They have had an above-average number of shots for the division, but over half of them are from outside the box. Indeed, Argyle rarely play in the opponent’s box, with the second least box entries in the league after two rounds of fixtures.

However, they are capable of defending their box very well. They have the highest number of interceptions in the competition and are in the top half for defensive duel win percentage and aerial duel win percentage.

PASS, SHOOT, PASS, SHOOT, SOUTHAMPTON’S PLANS TO DOMINATE THE GAME

The Southampton game plan is not difficult to decipher. Russell Martin’s side top a lot of the early metrics in the Championship: shots, passes, passes to final third, passing rate, progressive runs and PPDA (passes per defensive action) against. All of these stats show how much passing the Saints do, much of it in the middle third, probing against a set defence.

It is perhaps a slight shift from Martin’s work with MK Dons and Swansea, where possession was sometimes even deeper. The number of passes into the final third and the number of shots generated would suggest that there is more of a threat about the Saints under Martin.

They are quite aggressive in defence as well though, with the fifth-best PPDA score, which means that they allow their opponents very few passes before they put in a defensive action. They have allowed 20 shots so far, which is better than average, but they tend to give away slightly better chances than the average as well, which indicates that they tend to concede on the counter-attack.

PLYMOUTH Argyle VS SOUTHAMPTON PLAYERS TO WATCH

BALI MUMBA TO BE A BIG ATTACKING THREAT FOR PLYMOUTH

The former Sunderland and Norwich player was thought to be an attacking full back or perhaps a holding midfielder, but has discovered a new lease of life further forward.

This has resulted in an uptick in his key stats near the top of the pitch. In his last six Argyle matches, stretching back to League One, he has had at least one shot. This means that looking at Mumba’s prices for shots and goals here should a consideration for your Plymouth Argyle vs Southampton bet builder.

MORGAN WHITTAKER TO FIND SPACE TO SHOOT

Morgan Whittaker was a key man last season in being one of the players on the end of the counter-attacks. The former Derby County and Swansea City forward has great positional sense and knows where he can pick up those key areas around the edge of the box to get some shots away.

Whittaker took six shots, with four on target, against Huddersfield Town, whilst Southampton’s ball possession will likely restrict this number, the 22-year-old should be closely monitored in the shot markets.

JOE EDWARDS TO BE UP AGAINST IT DEFENSIVELY

Argyle captain Edwards is likely to slot into the right-back position for this match and bettors should be aware that he has had to get stuck in so far this season.

His six tackles across the two Championship matches so far is the most by any Pilgrims player to this point. This is unlikely to let up with the quality of the Southampton wingers. Indeed, the tackles could easily turn into fouls, he has sinned twice so far this term, and given the dribbling skills coming up against him, the experienced campaigner is worth a look in the fouls markets.

SHOT-MAD A. ARMSTRONG TO CONTINUE HIS WAYS

It is no secret that Adam Armstrong likes to have a shot. In his Blackburn Rovers days, Armstrong’s shot rate was similar to the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid, averaging around four per match.

His start to the Championship season has been promising from that perspective as well. That four-shot average is exactly what Armstrong is on right now, it also helps that he is on penalties for the Saints as the number of penalty box entries they are making means spot kicks can be a regular route to goal.

ALCARAZ TO ESCAPE HIS DEFENDERS TO ADD TO SHOT COUNT

Carlos Alcaraz is playing deeper in this system than he was last season in the Premier League, but this appears to be giving him more freedom.

The Argentine fired off a huge nine shots in a 4-4 draw vs Norwich City last weekend, and though this match could be a bit more cagey than that one, almost all matches will be, there is an obvious angle there to support Alcaraz in the shot markets.

NATHAN TELLA TO WORRY THE REF

Whilst Tella is more well-known for his attacking exploits, it is his defensive work that bettors should home in on for the Southampton forward.

Tella has been booked in both Championship matches so far and has given away two fouls.

PLYMOUTH Argyle VS SOUTHAMPTON MATCHUPS TO WATCH

DAN SCARR vs ADAM ARMSTRONG

Scarr has become integral to Argyle’s box defending. He is an excellent clearer of the ball with his head and his positional sense is excellent. How Scarr will manage against the sharp movement and acceleration of the small, nippy, instinctive Adam Armstrong could be key to the hosts’ chances of keeping Southampton out.

JOE EDWARDS vs RYan Manning

Edwards was mentioned above as someone who will be busy in this match. Che Adams looks set to start the match off the left flank, although he is unlikely to hug the touchline and deliver crosses into the box. Part of his role and selection may be to free up attack-minded left back Ryan Manning, who was a reliable goal contributor for Swansea last season. It will be interesting to see how Edwards tries to negate the threat that he poses and whether he does that on the right side of the referee’s whistle.

JACK STEPHENS vs RYAN HARDIE

Hardie is Argyle’s key attacker as he has the pace to stretch defences and make his team a threat on the counterattack. Jack Stephens has been made Southampton captain, he does have some athleticism, but can he cope with the movement and speed that Hardie will test him with? We will find out in the Saturday lunchtime kick-off in the Championship.

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