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Saturday, 7 April 2012

Premier League betting preview: Arsenal v Manchester City

Traditionally this fixture has been a home banker.  City's win at the Emirates in the Carling Cup this season was their first win in 27 attempts at Arsenal dating back to 1975.  However, City are unbeaten in their last 3 visits to Arsenal and have not conceded a goal in those visits.  Arsenal have only scored in 1 of the last 6 fixtures between the sides, which was a 3-0 win at City last season in a game that saw City reduced to 10 men in the first 5 minutes.  That victory was Arsenal's only win in the last 7 against City. 

Arsenal have won 7 straight games at home since a defeat to Manchester United in January but were beaten away at struggling QPR last week.  City's recent away form is poor, winning only 3 of 11 in all competitions since that win at the Emirates.  Lescott should be back in tandem with Kompany to try and thwart the threat of Van Persie.  Aguero returns up front for City.   3 points will take Arsenal above Spurs into 3rd place.  Arsenal have never finished behind Spurs under Arsene Wenger.  It's 13/8 for the home win, 5/2 the draw, and a City win is 19/10

Both Teams Score - the last 3 games between these sides at the Emirates have seen 2 goalless draws and a 1-0 City victory.  The reverse fixture in Manchester this season also finished 1-0 to City.  The last time both teams scored in this fixture was 7 games ago in City's 4-2 home win at the Etihad. 4/6 is available for both teams to score.  It's 11/8 for that not to happen.

Under/Over 2.5 goals - as already indicated above, goals have been at a premium in this fixture of late.  7 of the last 8 fixtures between the sides at the Emirates have seen under 2.5 goals.  It's 3/4 for over 2.5 goals but a very attractive looking 11/10 for under 2.5 goals.  Given the lack of goals in this fixture recently you may want to consider the 3/1 available for under 1.5 goals.  A contrary spanner to throw in the works is that Arsenal's last 7 home games have all seen over 2.5 goals whilst City's last 7 away games in the Premier League have seen under 2.5 goals.

Goalscorers - if you fancy an Arsenal goal it's hard to look past league leading goalscorer Robin Van Persie at 5/4 anytime or 9/2 first goalscorer.  For City the returning Sergio Aguero is 13/2 anytime and 2/1 first.  I think the set-piece will be crucial in this game and City's key set-piece men should be looked at.  You can get Kolarov at 8/1 to score anytime (28/1 first), Lescott at  12/1 anytime (40/1 first) and Kompany at 18/1 (66/1 first).  Check the teamsheets first.

Correct score - this game looks like being a close one, with a 1-0 win for either side available at 10/1.  City can nick this game to keep their title hopes alive but there is certainly merit in backing both sides (dutching) to win 1-0 given City's recent away record.
Picks - Under 2.5 goals, Under 1.5 goals, dutch the 1-0 correct score.

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

The Midweek Treble, Tuesday 6 March

The midweek treble is 3 homes, 1 each from the Championship, League 1 and League 2. A stake of 1 unit would return 3.37 so a £10 bet would put £33.70 in your pocket.

Reading v Portsmouth: home win.  3rd placed Reading have won 6 consecutive matches.  23rd placed Portsmouth have won only 1 of their last 10 and have been beaten 10 times away from home this season. 

Charlton v Colchester: home win.  League 1 leaders Charlton are unbeaten in 11 league games and have conceded just 4 goals in those matches.  Charlton are unbeaten at home.  11th placed Colchester have earned 34 points less than the hosts and have been beaten away to each opponent they have met from the top 8.

Swindon v Dagenham: home win.  Top of the table Swindon lost at Oxford at the weekend but won their previous 7 games and have won 11 straight at home.  Dagenham lie in 22nd place and are unbeaten in 3 but these games were against fellow strugglers in the bottom 6.  Dagenham have lost 10 away matches this season and Swindon should add to that tonight. 

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Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Premier League betting preview: Tottenham Hotspur v Manchester United

Spurs have not beaten United for 26 games in all competitions, a dismal run stretching back 11 years. Spurs are having a great season but are a little inconsistent of late losing 2 of their last 5. Their last 3 games saw them play out a stalemate at Anfield then put 5 past Newcastle before conceding 5 last weekend at Arsenal. However, Spurs have been strong at home this season, unbeaten in 12 since losing 5-1 to Manchester City back in August. United's away form has been excellent in winning 9 of 13 with a solitary loss at Newcastle. United will probably welcome Wayne Rooney back after a throat infection whilst Spurs will be without the suspended Scott Parker. Given their record against Spurs, United look outstanding value at 8/5 to win. It's 15/8 for the Spurs win. 3 of the last 4 meetings between the sides at White Hart Lane have ended in a draw, which merits attention at 9/4.

Both Teams Score - a Spurs v United game screams goals yet 2 of the last 3 fixtures between these sides at White Hart Lane have ended goalless. This is worth bearing in mind but a 0-0 repeat seems unlikely on current form. Spurs have scored in every home game this season, United have failed to score only once in all 26 Premier League games. United have conceded 8 in their last 4 away from home with both sides scoring in 3 of those. It's 8/13 that both teams score.

Over/Under 2.5 Goals - games at White Hart Lane this season average 3 goals. United's away games average 2.8 goals. The last 10 fixtures between the sides have averaged 2.7 goals per game. There is 4/5 available for over 2.5 goals. The unders are being offered at 21/20. It's worth noting that fixtures between the Premier League's current top 4 this season are averaging 5 goals per game. You can get 2/1 for over 3.5 goals and 5/1 for over 4.5 goals.

Goalscorers - Javier Hernandez has scored the first goal in 6 matches this season and he is 7/1 to do so again. You would want to check the line-ups on Sunday before backing him. Emmanuel Adebayor looks overpriced at Coral who offer 11/5 he scores anytime. If Rooney is fit he can be backed at 7/5 to score anytime. Of the outsiders, Assou-Ekotto can hit a ball and he's available at 18/1 to score anytime.

Picks: Both Teams Score, Over 2.5 Goals

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Premier League betting preview: Manchester United v Liverpool

United have won 7 of the last 8 fixtures between the sides at Old Trafford and have won 9 of their 12 home games in the Premier League this season. Liverpool's away form is inconsistent, winning 6 and losing 5 out of 12. Although Liverpool won the recent FA cup game against United at Anfield it's fair to say United looked the better side for the majority of the game, and United also showed good form recently at rivals Chelsea and Arsenal. United can be backed as big as 9/10 to win this game, which looks too good to turn down. It's 7/2 the Liverpool win and 13/5 the draw.

Both Teams Score - the last time United failed to score at home in the Premier League was 42 games ago against Aston Villa in December 2009. Liverpool have only scored 14 away from Anfield this season but United have been vulnerable in defence this season with De Gea suspect and injuries to key defenders. It is 11 games in all competitions since United kept a clean sheet against anyone placed higher than Liverpool in 7th (Spurs on 22 August). Liverpool have scored in 8 of the last 9 against United. It is 5/6 that both teams score.

Under/Over 2.5 goals - the last 4 Premier League meetings between the sides at Old Trafford have seen over 2.5 goals. There have been 49 goals scored in 12 Premier League games at Old Trafford this season. 19/20 is available for either side of the under/over 2.5 goals mark. You might be tempted by the 9/4 for over 3.5 goals.

Anytime goalscorer - Fergie suggested after the Chelsea game that Javier Hernandez may get some more game time during the rest of the season. Hernandez is 17/10 to score anytime and has scored in the last 2 Premier League games between the sides. 4/1 Dirk Kuyt has 4 in 3 in all competitions v United and 7/2 Steven Gerrard has 4 in his last 5 Premier League games v United.

Picks: United win, Both Teams Score, Over 2.5 goals.

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Super Sunday betting preview: Arsenal v Manchester United

Arsenal have won 7 of 10 at home in the Premier League this season but have faced a succession of teams from the bottom half of the league, which may also explain why their much criticised defence has managed to concede only 6 at the Emirates. Liverpool in 7th are the highest placed side to have visited the Emirates and ran out comfortable 2-0 winners. United have conceded only 6 in 10 on their Premier League travels but 3 came in their last away game at Newcastle and, prior to last week's clean sheet against a poor Bolton side, they had conceded 8 in 3 in all competitions. United have also had a fairly easy run on their travels in the Premier League, with the Newcastle drubbing the only occasion they have faced a side from the top 6 away. Arsenal have only failed to score once at home, United only once away. It's 4/6 that both teams score.

Only 3 of Arsenal's 10 home games have seen over 2.5 goals, it's 4 of 10 for United's away fixtures. The bookies are hovering around the evens mark either way for under/over 2.5 goals with over the slight favourite at around 4/5.

Both sides have shown vulnerability of late and it's tough to make a strong case for either side to win. Arsenal have won 3 of the last 5 Premier League games between the sides at the Emirates and are 15/8 to win this one. United are 13/8 with the draw a tempting 12/5. A correct score of 1-1 also looks a real possibility and is 6/1.

Arsenal are heavily reliant on Robin Van Persie's goals and United need Wayne Rooney on form to make them tick. Van Persie offers excellent value at 11/8 to score anytime. Rooney is 7/5 and Welbeck merits attention at 2/1. Don't expect Henry or Scholes to make an impact.

Picks: both teams score at 4/6, Van Persie anytime at 11/8.

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Super Sunday betting preview: Manchester City v Tottenham Hotspur

City will again be without the key figures of Vincent Kompany and Yaya Toure. For Spurs Ledley King is likely to miss out with a hamstring injury and Emanuel Adebayor cannot play against his parent club. Spurs haven't won any of the last 3 against City but prior to that won an incredible 10 of 11, including 6 away at City. David Silva (11/4 to score anytime) returned from injury on Monday night at Wigan and City will hope he can provide the spark missing from City's last home game, the 1-0 Carling Cup defeat to Liverpool.

De Jong and Barry will likely anchor the City midfield with Milner possibly taking a position on the right to help Zabaleta/Richards combat the threat of Gareth Bale (7/2 to score anytime) down the Spurs left. Scott Parker gives some substance to the Spurs midfield that was clearly lacking when they lost this reverse fixture 5-1 at White Hart Lane last August. Parker's addition and Yaya's absence makes this match a more finely balanced proposition but Silva's return and the recent form of Aguero (11/8 to score anytime) presents a formidable challenge to the Spurs rearguard, which has kept only 2 clean sheets away from home. It is worth noting that Dzeko (15/8 to score anytime) scored for the first time since early 2 November on Monday night and he tends to score in bunches, inlcuding 4 at Spurs when he started the season with 6 goals in 3 games. City have won 15 straight at home in the Premier League and are priced at a hard to ignore 10/11 to win this. Spurs are 7/2 and the draw is 13/5.

City have conceded only 4 Premier League goals at the Etihad this season but Spurs have scored in 9 successive away games since opening their campaign with a 3-0 defeat at Old Trafford. City have scored at home in 22 successive league games. 8/10 of City's home games this season have seen over 2.5 goals, 7/10 of Tottenham's away games have also seen over 2.5 goals. However, this fixture has seen 1-0 victories for either side in the past 2 seasons in what have effectively been deciders to qualify for the Champions League. It's 8/11 for over 2.5 goals and 4/6 that both teams score. It is also worth noting that 5 of City's last 8 games in all competitions have seen under 2.5 goals, with the figure rising to 7 out of 8 for Spurs. The 11/10 available for under 2.5 goals is tempting given the importance of this game. Spurs could find themselves within 2 points of City or as far off as 8.

Picks: City win at 10/11, under 2.5 goals at 11/10.

Monday, 2 January 2012

Manchester City v Liverpool: Betting preview

City come into this game off the back of New Year's Day's shock defeat at Sunderland. Liverpool have had a couple of extra days rest since they won 3-1 at home to Newcastle last Friday. City will probably recall Richards, Clichy, Milner, Silva, Aguero and Balotelli to the starting line-up as they will need their best XI to take anything against a strong Liverpool side likely to feature Gerrard and Suarez. The 2 sides drew 1-1 at Anfield recently in an excellent, uncompromising encounter that saw City's 10 men hold on thanks to Joe Hart's keeping. City won this fixture 3-0 last season but Liverpool are otherwise unbeaten since 2005 at the Etihad. Liverpool haven't lost against any of last season's top 4 in 5 fixtures this season. City have won 9/9 at home in the Premier League and were unbeaten in 28 matches there in 2011. City last lost successive games in October 2010. This is a tough game to call, with the draw possibly the best bet at 13/5. City can be backed at 10/11, which is good given their home record. Liverpool are 7/2.

Both Teams Score - City have scored 28 and conceded 4 in 9 home games this season but resilient Liverpool have conceded just 7 in 9 away. City have 4 clean sheets from their last 6 matches and Liverpool have managed only 10 goals in 9 away from Anfield. In what is likely to be a tough, tight match it could be that both teams do not score, which is available at 11/10.

Over/Under 2.5 goals - City have been less rampant of late, failing to score in their last 2 games, and have failed to score more than 1 in a game 7 times in their last 10. 7 of Liverpool's 9 away games have seen under 2.5 goals. 5 of the last 7 between these sides at the Etihad have seen under 2.5 goals. Most firms are offering around 10/11 under 2.5 and 10/11 over 2.5 goals.

Total Bookings Points - Andre Marriner takes charge of the game and is fond of a card, dishing out 33 yellows and a red in 8 Premier League games this season. The Anfield fixture saw 6 yellows and a red and I expect a similar figure in this game. A yellow is worth 10 points and a red 25. It's 35 points when 2 yellows for a player leads to an automatic red (as with Balotelli at Anfield). 13/10 is available for over 50 points with Blue Square and 888Sport.

Picks: 2 x singles: Under 2.5 goals and Over 50 Bookings Points.