Two of the promotion contenders, Sheffield United and Luton Town, will face each other in the EFL Championship. Both teams are looking for back-to-back wins. The Blades comfortably sit second in the league table, and their opponents are just three places behind them in fifth. These two teams are separated by ten points. Below are some of the stats that could predict the outcome of the match.
The stats behind race to promotion
Sheffield United sits second in the league table with 20 wins, seven draws, and eight losses. They have scored 56 goals and conceded 31. Sheffield United have a decent xG rate of 1.6 per 90 minutes. The above viz shows the percentile rank of the team in comparison to other teams in the EFL Championship. The Blades have a very high percentile rank in attack and defence. This is one of the reasons why they are sitting second in the league table.
Luton town have won 15, drawn 12, and lost eight matches this season. They are on a three-match unbeaten streak. Luton have scored 43 goals with an average xG rate of 1.35. Their defence has leaked 34 goals. The above pizza chart shows that Luton Town have a decent percentile rank in attacking and defensive departments. They lack the quality of keeping the ball at their feet and therefore have a low percentile rank in the possession department.
A battle between two attacking sides
Sheffield United and Luton Town are ranked high for their attacking displays. Both teams like to stay on the front foot.
Sheffield United averages 32.97 positional attacks and 1.34 counterattacks per match. They attempt 12.91 shots with a 40.5% accuracy rate. In the last two matches, Sheffield United have created most of the chances from the right side.
Luton Town have created more positional attacks than the opposition and averages 33.66 positional attacks and 1.17 counterattacks per match. They take 10.89 shots with an accuracy rate of 33.33%. In the last two matches, Luton Town have been more effective from the flanks. However, their attacks from centre have also generated a high xG rate.
Luton Town and Sheffield United are ranked highly for making entries into dangerous areas. Sheffield United are ranked high for making entries to the penalty box, while Luton Town makes the most entries to the final third per 90 minutes.
The two images above show the penetration carries made by both teams in their last five matches. It can be clearly observed that the Blades have slightly edged their opponents in penetrating the opposition penalty box. Sheffield United are more effective from the right side, while their opponents attack from both ends. This can turn out to be an end-to-end game.
Iliman Ndiaye ended his goal-scoring drought in the EFL Championship. The 23-year-old netted his 11th goal of the season after failing to score since mid-January. He is their top goal-contributor and has played a huge role in keeping his side in the race for promotion. The above xG map shows that Ndiaye often finds space inside the six-yard box and has scored four goals from that position.
Carlton Morris will lead the line for the visiting team. The 27-year-old scored a goal in the last match and took his overall tally to 14 goals. He also has four assists to his name. Morris is also a threat inside the opposition penalty box Sheffield United will have to deal with his presence inside the penalty box.
There are no fresh injury concerns in both camp. Anel Ahmedhodzic will return to the team after serving his suspension.
According to the 1×2 betting odds, Sheffield United are the favourites to win this match. They have an odds rate of around 2.01 to win the match. The next possible result is that the match might end in a draw. The odds for draw are around 3.4. As for the over/under lines, the under lines are expected to thrive as both teams will be conservative. However, this can also turn out to be a high-scoring affair as these teams are not afraid of attacking.
Sheffield United have been a bit inconsistent in recent times. However, the Blades are capable enough of taking three points against any team. They will be the favourites to win the match. Luton Town are also looking to enjoy their good run and take maximum points from this game.
Visuals via Wyscout and the TFA data viz engine