On this page you find articles on football odds and sports betting in general.
14th October 2015 / paul - Category:
Euro 2016 Betting
So now we know 20 of the 24 teams who will take part in Euro 2016.
Eight remaining countries enter the play-offs and, by the middle of next month, we will know the full line-up ahead of the group draw in Paris on December 12.
There are some unexpected names among the confirmed finalists and a few notable absentees. None bigger than 1988 European champions The Netherlands, who have failed to qualify for the finals of the European Championships for the first time since 1984. It’s less than 18 months since the Dutch were finishing third in the World Cup in Brazil but Danny Blind’s side have had a disastrous Euro 2016 qualifying campaign with Tuesday’s home defeat by the Czech Republic being the final nail in the coffin.
Other former winners Greece are also out having managed just one in 10 qualifiers while 1992 champions Denmark will have to negotiate the play-offs. The Republic Of Ireland are also in the play-off having just failed to overhaul Germany and Poland in their section. They won’t be seeded, however, which could see them draw the likes of Sweden or Denmark, who are 150/1 (Betfred and BetVictor) and 200/1 (bet365) respectively to win Euro 2016 at present. Martin O’Neill‘s men are 11/10 to qualify for France with Paddy Power and 5/6 with BetVictor to miss out.
Iceland and Albania have qualified to play in their first major finals and Unibet, 888sport and 10Bet have the former at 85/1 to win Euro 2016. The latter are 500/1 with Unibet, 888sport and Titanbet. Slovakia, Northern Ireland and Wales will all be playing in their first European Championship Finals. The Welsh have qualified for their first major tournament since 1958 and are 70/1 with Unibet, 888sport and 10Bet to go all the way. Despite being the fifth seeds, Northern Ireland won their qualifying group but are a general 300/1, which are bigger odds than teams who have yet to qualify. Slovakia are 165/1 with 888sport and Unibet.
World champions Germany are bwin‘s 17/5 favourites to win Euro 2016 but their qualification campaign didn’t go as smoothly as it could have done, which gives other teams hope. They lost away games in Poland and the Republic Of Ireland. Hosts France are a best 4/1 with Betfred and Paddy Power with Spain priced up at 13/2 by several bookmakers to complete a hat-trick of European Championship successes.
Vicente del Bosque‘s team had an impressive qualifying campaign, dropping just three points. But no team had a better qualifying record than England, who won all 10 games. Qualifying has never been a problem for England but turning up at the finals of major tournaments often sees their limitations exposed – Roy Hodgson’s young squad is 23/2 with Unibet and 888sport to be winners in France next year with Belgium priced up at a general 10/1. Italy are 17/1 with Unibet, 888sport and 10Bet.
25th July 2012 / Lee A Jackson - Category:
Free Bets & Promotions
Online bookmaker Ladbrokes are running a great football betting promotion all the way up to August 11th, 2012. There is plenty of football action around at the moment, with the Olympics and a whole host of friendly matches being played. So punters are not short of choice for a game to have a wager on. There has already been plenty of pre-season action shown on TV and of course, all of the Olympic tournaments will be broadcast live as well, and this is where the Ladbrokes Money Back Special comes into play, as they are running a 0-0 Money Back offer.
Place a Correct Score bet on any live football match being broadcast on the BBC, ITV, ESPN, Sky Sports, Eurosport or Five between now and August 11th 2012, and online bookmaker Ladbrokes will refund any losing bets on the market, if the game ends up in a 0-0 draw. This is great coverage for your football betting and just falling into this will be the Community Shield between Chelsea and Manchester City at Wembley on August 11th. The Ladbrokes Money Back Special will not apply to any matches after the 11th of August.
The maximum refund on this great money back special will be £50 per customer, per match and it will only apply to bets placed prior to kick off, with live in play bets not counting. Just to help you keep up to date with what is going on in the football and what is being televised where, check out Ladbrokes What to Watch section, which lists all the live matches and the station on which they are being broadcast. Have a Correct Score bet in any live televised match, and you will get your lost stake refunded with a free bet if the game ends in a 0-0 draw.
Online bookmaker Ladbrokes offer a free £50 bet for new customers registering an account with them. The bookie will match the value of your first stake on a new account after registering with the special code FB50 to get your new account. A great introductory welcome offer from Ladbrokes, giving you some great free betting cash to enjoy.
19th July 2012 / Lee A Jackson - Category:
With the Olympic football tournament starting very soon at London 2012, not only will there be a lot of interest in a backing the outright winner and tracking the progress of Great Britain, but the top goalscorer market is also offering a lot of value. While Great Britain are going with an inexperienced front line, some of the nations at the London 2012 Olympic Games have gone with proven quality instead. Heading the charts for the Olympic football top goalscorer are some of the biggest names from around Europe and South America. To start with the highest Great British player showing up in the market is Chelsea’s Daniel Sturridge who is trading at a price of 20/1 with online bookmaker BetFred. Great Britain’s other forward options are Craig Bellamy at 25 to 1 and Marvin Sordell at a price of 40/1.
Leading the way at the top of the charts though is Brazilian club Santos’ star striker Neymar. Neymar has scored nine goals in 18 or international appearances for Brazil, and is one of the star attractions of the London 2012 Olympic football tournament. With Brazil running as outright favourites to win the gold medal at the Olympics 2012 games, more likely than not Neymar will be heavily involved amongst the goals. The quality that Brazil have approved is not going to be matched by any other country at the Olympic Games and therefore the Brazilians are offering a lot of great value in Olympic football top goalscorer betting. Along with Neymar, Brazil have selected Alexander Pato and FC Porto’s Hulk. Alex Pato is trading at a price of 7/1 while his compatriot Hulk is matching that price as well with online bookmaker BetFred. So the Brazilians really are looking like the best options for a paying out on Olympic football top goalscorer betting.
Mixing things up near the top of the favourites in the market is Spain’s Adrian Lopez. Lopez may have found himself a bit unlucky not to have made the Spanish squad for Euro 2012, but he is tipped to go well at the Olympic Games. The Atletico Madrid forward is currently being offered at a price of 6/1 with online bookmaker BetFred in Olympic top goalscorer betting. Uruguay, who are in Great Britain’s pool at the Olympic games, also have a tremendous forward dual to bank on at London 2012. They have selected Liverpool’s Luis Suarez and Napoli star Edinson Cavani. Cavani is reported to be in talks with a move to the Premier league with current champions league holders Chelsea. They will form a mobile, quick and deadly pairing up front for Uruguay, who are being tipped as the strongest dark horse in the Olympic football betting market.
London 2012 Olympic Football Top Goalscorer betting at online bookmaker BetFred
Neymar 5/1, Adrian Lopez 6/1, Alexandre Pato 7/1, Hulk 7/1, Edinson Cavanis 9/1, Luis Suarez 8/1, Iker Munian 10/1,,Cristian Tello 16/1, Leandro Damiao 20/1, Rodrigo 16/1, Daniel Sturridge 16/1, Alvaro Vasquez 20/1, Oribe Peralta 25/1, Craig Bellamy 25/1
Online bookmaker BetFred are offering a free £50 for new customers registering an account with them. The highly rated bookie will match the value of your first stake on a new account with a free bet, up to the maximum value of £50, giving you some great free betting cash to enjoy for your Olympic Football betting.
19th January 2012 / Lee A Jackson - Category:
Free Bets & Promotions
There are some good football betting selections to look ahead to in another action packed weekend of Premier League fixtures. The highlight of the weekend is going to be Manchester United’s trip to the Emirates to face Arsenal. The Red Devils gunned down a woeful Gunners 8-2 at Old Trafford earlier in the season, but with Thierry Henry back in an Arsenal shirt, will Arsenal be able to get some revenge? The Red Devils title rivals Manchester City are at home on Sunday in their big fixture against the high flying Tottenham Hotspur, so it is going to superb Sunday of top quality action in the Premier League. City hold a three point ascendancy at the top of the league at the moment going into the weekend’s action, so there are massive games to come. Online bookmaker SkyBet have raised one of their great What If? Betting questions about the two matches.
What If Both Manchester Clubs Win By Two Goals Or More?
If you think that they will, then there is a wonderful price of 14/1 to be snapped up. Need to put some stock in this bet happening? Well, Manchester City trounced Tottenham 5-1 at White Hart Lane earlier in the season, while Man Utd of course ran rampant in a 8-2 victory over Arsenal at the start of the season.
There is plenty of other Premier League betting options to get your betting teeth into as well this weekend, and popular bookie SkyBet are looking at some of the home teams and wondering…
What If…Home Is Where The Heart Is?
What this means is that home sides Everton, QPR, Stoke and Sunderland all notch up wins on Saturday in the Premier League, then there is a nice price of 10/1 to be taken with the bookie. Struggling QPR could sure use a win at home over bottom side Wigan, while Everton will fancy their chances at Goodison Park against Blackburn Rovers. The improving Sunderland need a bounce back victory over Swansea after suffering defeat at Stamford Bridge last weekend. Then the high flying Stoke City, up in eighth place and challenging for the top six, will have strong home backing as they face the sliding West Brom. So can all four home sides win? There is a good enhanced price at SkyBet if you think that they will.
The SkyBet What If? Market is a great little option to look at with SkyBet, because there are fun little selections popping up extra week. In there you can get enhanced prices on the market selection that SkyBet present and is worth dipping in to in order to try and pick up a little extra bonus profit. The highly popular online bookmaker SkyBet offer a free £10 bet for new customers registering an account. This is a great welcome bonus offer from the bookie, as they offer the £10 bet completely free. All that you need to do is to register an account as a new customer with online bookmaker SkyBet, and the bookie will automatically credit your new account with a free £10 bet. It is that easy and straightforward to get your free bet!
16th December 2011 / Lee A Jackson - Category:
Free Bets & Promotions
Looking for some alternative betting coupons this weekend for your football betting? Well, then Ladbrokes and their Goal Rush Coupon serves up a treat. This is a simple coupon as all you have to predict is whether or not you think that both teams in a selected game will score during the match. That’s it. Take a look at the match and just select yes or no, whichever way you think the game will go. In the Premier League matches covered by the Ladbrokes Goal Rush Coupon this weekend, we have Blackburn v West Brom, Everton v Norwich, Fulham v Bolton and Newcastle v Swansea City.
The coupon is way bigger than that though, with matches on there from across a wide range of European leagues, so you really aren’t short of options. As you would expect, as you have a 50/50 chance of getting this right, and the bookie has a 50/50 chance of losing, then the odds are not going to be expansive, but there is some sensible small bits of profit to be made. For both teams Not to score in the Blackburn v West Brom match for example, there is a price of 11/10 to be taken. Small profit if it comes off, but profit all the same. As long as one of them keeps a clean sheet, you would win with that bet.
This is a great coupon to look at, and pretty fun as well. The Ladbrokes Goal Rush Coupon offers you something a little different to your regular outright match betting on your football wagers. Head there and take a scan down the list, and see what you can pick out of it. The highly rated online bookmaker Ladbrokes offer a free £50 bet for new customers registering an account with them. They will match the value of your first bet with a free bet to the same value as your first stake. New customers receiving the free bet can then have a crack at some risk free profit with it, a fantastic way to get started with your new Ladbrokes account!
15th September 2011 / Lee A Jackson - Category:
Premier League Betting
Manchester United v Chelsea Betting Tip & Odds: Chelsea totally failed to show up in their matches at Old Trafford in the Premier League and the Champions League last season. They were way too timid, too limited in their approach and paid the price. Can Chelsea actually put pressure on United’s back line which has not been tested in any way shape or form. Get they get pressure on David de Gea who has yet to impress in the United goal? More importantly, can Chelsea stop United scoring? The signs do not look too great for the visitors, so we will take a Man Utd -0.75 Asian Handicap for 11/8 at Bet365.
Manchester United to win: 17/20 at Paddy Power
Draw: 29/10 at Stan James
Chelsea to win: 4/1 at Totesport
First Goalscorer Odds: Wayne Rooney 5/1 at Victor Chandler
EPL Match Preview: One of the big highlights of the new Premier League season, as Chelsea head to Old Trafford to try and keep pace with the blistering start that the Red Devils have exacted. Defeat for Chelsea here would put them five points back of their title rivals, a big dent so early in the season to already have to make up. That would leave the Blues having to pick themselves back up and trying to match the hot form of the two Manchester clubs if they are going to stay in the title hunt. But it has been Manchester United who have been laying down all the markers so far this season. Can the Blues get anything out of a trip to Old Trafford, where they misfired so badly last season?
Manchester United Form: From right out of the gates, Manchester United have laid down the gauntlet to their challengers and pretenders to their Premier League crown. Some shrewd wheeling and dealing over the summer by Sir Alex Ferguson has breathed a lot of new life in the Old Trafford outfit, and they have been hungry from the get go. Forget about the late own goal by West Brom which secured United picked up three points in their opening match, they haven’t looked back since. With the injection of creativity from Ashley Young and the inspired form by Wayne Rooney, who looks so much better after a quiet summer, Manchester United are the team to beat. With 18 goals in their first four matches of the new season, with four already from Rooney, they look prolific. There is of course a long season ahead and they are unlikely to keep up this immense pace, especially when the rigours of cup football start working their way into the season. For now though, they are on fire. United had to come from behind at Benfica in their opening Champions League match in the week, earning themselves a 1-1 draw, and only a strong performance from keeper Anders Lindegaard kept the night alive for the Red Devils. Yes, Alex Ferguson rang the changes as expected, and we will see a stronger side on Sunday to face Chelsea. There have been questions over the toughness of new keeper David de Gea, who has made some errors early into the new season, but Ferguson is standing behind the Spaniard and putting him in the line up for Sunday. United have conceded three goals so far this season, and that is largely down to the fact that their new look back line has really not been tested. A sluggish Tottenham could not touch them at Old Trafford, and even though Arsenal scored twice at Old Trafford, it was nowhere near enough to win the game as they got buried under an eight goal avalanche from the Red Devils. Some betting trends for United so far: They have scored first in each of their four league matches, have conceded 66% of their goals in the first half of game and have scored a 100% record with all matches ending over 2.5 goals so far.
Chelsea Form: While United have picked up four wins from four in their opening matches and have been scoring freely, it has been something of a more controlled, calm approach by Chelsea under new boss Andre Villas Boas. We arguably haven’t seen a very convincing Chelsea as of yet, but they have gotten the job done more or less. After opening the season with a disappointing 0-0 draw away at Stoke, the Blues have won their next three matches on the bounce, but they have been narrow victories in terms of the score line. They had to come from behind against West Brom at Stamford Bridge, conceded a goal against Norwich and allowed Sunderland a late lifeline in a 2-1 victory at the Stadium of Light. So Chelsea are definitely not as sharp as Manchester Untied are up front, and there are defensive issues as well. Chelsea are a work in progress as Andre Villas Boas has looked to freshen up an aging squad. Young striker Daniel Sturridge got the nod up front over Fernando Torres at Sunderland, and responded with a goal. The extra bit of pace and drive from the youngster is just what Chelsea have been lacking, and the new face of Juan Mata from the left looks as if it has been a stroke of genius. Chelsea finally have someone who can drift into the box from out wide and poach goals. With the injury to Didier Drogba against Norwich, Chelsea have desperately been hoping that he is going to be ready to face United, and that is because the big talisman will likely cause the United back line the most problems. Fernando Torres still doesn’t look at his best, Florent Malouda doesn’t contribute enough goals, while Nicolas Anelka just is not prolific enough. The Blues have Romelu Lukaku as well to look to, so there are plenty of options up front. It is just finding what clicks the best. After drafting in Raul Meireles to do a midfield role, Chelsea are looking to the future with the Portuguese star taking over from Lampard at Sunderland. So Chelsea are changing slowly, and will be keen to get David Luiz back alongside John Terry for a bit of pace and creativity from the back. Chelsea haven’t been great at the back, lacking just a little bit of pace. But they are chugging along and this really is a match which they can’t afford to lose so early in the season.
Head to Head: The two defeats at Old Trafford last season for Chelsea has left them with just 19 wins from 78 appearances there. In contrast, United have won 35 matches against Chelsea at home, with 24 draws. But United, in those 78 matches have outscored Chelsea by nearly a ratio of 2:1. It was four wins out of five for United in total last season against Chelsea (including the Community Shield), with the Blues scoring a home win in the league. It has been four home wins out of the last five for United (with Chelsea taking a 2-1 win in the 2009/10 season) and so have to be looked at as favourites from the stats point of view. The goal scoring stats perhaps paints the biggest story this season, with United’s 18 going up against Chelsea’s 7. Both sides have concede three goals this season. The sides haven’t produced a draw in their last seven meetings.
Online Bookmaker Promotion: Bet365 are going big for this one. You can get yourself a free bet on Sunday’s big Premier League match. When you place a pre-match bet on Manchester United v Chelsea, the online bookmaker will match the value of your stake as a free bet to use In-Play. So make your pre match bet, and make another bet on the match In-Play and if your In-Play bet loses, then you will get the stake refunded to the value of your largest pre-match bet! Superb value from one of the most highly rated online bookmakers. Bet365 welcome new customers with a free £200 bet on accounts as well, and continue to be one of the most popular destinations for live in play football betting. See more on this great deal here
15th September 2011 / Lee A Jackson - Category:
Premier League Betting
Tottenham Hotspur v Liverpool Betting Tip & Odds: Looking at the stats it looks as if the first goal could be all important here. Liverpool have not conceded in the first half this season, and Spurs haven’t scored in the first half of a match. So you would picture Liverpool being the first to get on the score sheet and then have Tottenham, as the home side, come back at them. Really hasn’t been much between these two over the past couple of seasons, both have their strengths and their weaknesses, which could even out to a draw. We will suggest a Liverpool -0.25 Asian Handicap at Bet365, just favouring the Reds to win because we think they have just that extra in firepower, but only losing half if they draw. Good outright value on the Reds, but a draw is really tempting as well.
Tottenham Hotspur to win: 13/8 at Paddy Power
Draw: 12/5 at Bet365
Liverpool to win: 9/5 at Totesport
First Goalscorer Odds: Luis Suarez 7/4 at William Hill
EPL Match Preview: Another big match on the calendar for Sunday, but this will be overshadowed by the Manchester United v Chelsea fixture. This is a clash between two sides who really should be pushing for a top five finish in the Premier League this season. Liverpool will have had more of a rest, as Spurs were entertained in the Europa League midweek, and the Reds will fancy their chances of another successful trip to London in the early season. The Reds are growing in stature, while Tottenham are looking to find their way into the new season, and are having to fight against injuries and poor form. This certainly isn’t a banker for them, but a great chance for one of the sides to step up and gain big points off a rival for a European spot.
Tottenham Hotspur Form: Well, there seems all sorts of distractions coming from the Europa League for Spurs boss Harry Redknapp, who doesn’t seem the least bit interested in the tournament. So it is a little hard to take anything from that, or their 0-0 draw against PAOK, so we’ll focus on their league form. The season has started well for Spurs at all, after having their opening season fixture against Everton postponed, Tottenham had to open their account at Old Trafford, which resulted in a poor 3-0 defeat in which they just couldn’t match the Red Devils in any department. Worse was to come when they faced Manchester City in their next match, this time at White Hart Lane. City rolled into London and crushed Spurs 5-1 which really set alarm bells ringing. To be fair, Spurs have had their injury problems, including a most recent one to England defender Michael Dawson. They have brought in Emmanuel Adebayor to try and offer something different up front, and while the former Gunners striker was the enemy of a lot of Spurs fans, he opened his account on his debut away at Wolves, helping Spurs to their first win. Still, that is just one win from three, just three goals and eight conceded. Certainly not the form of a top six side, which Tottenham should be. There is a lot of quality in the side and they will probably come good once they get going, but at the moment, there is a bit of stuttering and starting and they do look a little bit vulnerable at the back. The saving grace in this match, in what has been a really tough start to the new season for Harry Redknapp, is that they will have home advantage, and a chance to shake off those Manchester City blues. It could be important in your Spurs v Liverpool betting that Tottenham get off to a good start. They haven’t scored a goal in the first half of a Premier League match yet, and have conceded three late goals. In their two defeats, their opponents scored first. Tottenham could really do with a boost, they look a little lightweight up front and need someone to really take a grip of things. May get Rafael van der Vaart back in some capacity.
Liverpool Form: Well it has been a mixed bag of things for Kenny Dalglish at the start of the new season. He has been one of the busiest Premier League managers on the transfer market this year, ringing the changes in the January transfer window and again in the summer. The Reds are still without captain Steven Gerrard, who could also miss Sunday’s match as well on the sidelines as he recovers from injury. Fortunately there were enough bodies brought in so that they haven’t missed him all that much. The fact that Liverpool haven’t missed his influential presence totally, is a sign that they are on the right track for the future. With Charlie Adam and Jordan Henderson in the midfield now Liverpool have good cover. They will be missing right back Glen Johnson, and other than that, Dalglish has a very healthy squad. Liverpool stumbled in their last fixture, going down 1-0 against Stoke at the Britannia Stadium, which ended a run of back to back wins for the Reds. There is good versatility up front, with Luis Suarez likely to be heavily amongst the goals this season, and with support from Dirk Kuyt, Liverpool will score goals. With criticism of Andy Carroll’s lifestyle coming to a head, he has really yet to make the impact his big money move from Newcastle suggested he would. Still, Liverpool have plenty to offer and at the moment, look in much better shape than Tottenham. A good win away at Arsenal, and a convincing victory at Anfield over Bolton has given the Reds a strong enough start to suggest that they could push for fourth place this season. There are definitely more positive signs ahead for them, and this trip to London will be another great opportunity to show that. They just need to be a bit more clinical than they were at Stoke. Liverpool have only conceded one goal in the first half so far this season, and have opened the scoring in three quarters of their matches, so good value for getting out in front.
Head to Head: Spurs picked up victories both home and away in the Premier League last season against Liverpool, which means they have won three out of the last four meetings. The last two clashes at White Hart Lane have both ended in 2-1 wins for Tottenham. There have been 76 meetings between the two at White Hart Lane, with Spurs winning 37, Liverpool 22 and 17 draws. Not too much in the total goals scorer in this fixture, but there haven’t been more than three goals scored in each of their last four meetings. The last time Liverpool won at White Hart Lane was a 2-0 win back in the 2007/08 season. Decent record for Spurs at White Hart Lane against Liverpool then, but will have to work for it.
Online Bookmaker Promotion: Boylesports are offering First Goalscorer Cashback for the Tottenham v Liverpool match on Sunday. Back a player as a First Goalscorer, and if your selection doesn’t open the scoring but hits the second goal of the match, then the bookmaker will refund your lost stake for your. A nice bit of coverage for your First Goalscorer betting. Popular bookie Boylesports offer a free £20 bet welcome bonus for new customers registering an account with them. Place a first bet of £20 and receive a free bet to the same value! Great way to get started with the popular bookmaker.
15th September 2011 / Lee A Jackson - Category:
Premier League Betting
Blackburn Rovers v Arsenal Betting Tip & Odds: This is a fascinating betting opportunity, one which is looking like a draw for different reasons. It will be a surprise if there is a clean sheet, because neither defence has showed up to the races this season, so this could all come down to passion and who wants it more on the day. Rovers have to wake up soon, and this could be the tonic they need, in a crazy way it fits that they would get their first win here. However, very close to call, so with home advantage, we’ll take Blackburn +0.5 Asian Handicap for Evens at Bet365.
Blackburn Rovers to win: 18/5 at Victor Chandler
Draw: 13/5 at Victor Chandler
Arsenal to win: 10/11 at Totesport
EPL Match Preview: Two managers under pressure and two struggling teams. Between Arsenal and Blackburn, they have produced just one win this season in their collective eight matches. Does that point to this being ground out as a draw on Saturday? Both sides have defensive problems, and neither can find the required punch up front. With unrest growing quickly at Ewood Park, and protests on their way, will this be one of those emotional days when football gets overlooked, or will the home players respond with a morale boosting win. Rovers need a win to try and get off the foot of the table, while the Gunners need to start heading up the table to contest for a European spot. There aren’t many roses blooming for these sides, so who will prevail?
Blackburn Rovers Form: Rock bottom of the Premier League after four matches. So no form to write home about. Manager Steve Kean is a man under pressure and looks likely to be the first managerial casualty of the new season. We suggested that they were going struggle, but never though that it would be this badly. How they are going to get out of this mess if drastic measures are not taken is anyone’s guess. But the new owners of Blackburn Rovers are asking fans to get behind the team and Kean, as rumours of big protest for Saturday’s match are filtering through. Rightly so, Blackburn fans are not happy. They saw the big slide in the teams fortunes after Sam Allardyce was booted out last season and Steve Kean took over. It was rosy at the start, but they ended up on the fringe of a relegation battle. The club seemed reluctant to spend money over the season to try and remedy things, and things have just gotten off to the kind of form which almost got them into trouble last season. Not sure of the motives of the new owners, as team investment and the managerial position don’t appear to be pressing needs, but the fans know that they are. They need a huge boost here after just one draw to show for their efforts so far this season. That draw came in their last league match away at Fulham, and so maybe that is something to build upon for Rovers. If there is anything good for confidence when a team is struggling, it is beating one of the top sides in the country, and Blackburn have the chance to wake up the Ewood Park crowd by taking down a shaky Arsenal. No, there is no form that suggest Blackburn are going to do this, certainly not with three goals scored and seven conceded in their four matches, but it is just the kind of fixture where you can see something odd happening, especially with all the emotions running amok on the day.
Arsenal Form: After a midweek draw in the Champions League away at Borussia Dortmund, which was not a bad result we suppose the way Arsenal’s form has gone this season, but still, again, it has not been good enough. Where are the Gunners after four matches of the new season? Not where you would expect them to be, down in 12th place with just one win to their name, which was a tense 1-0 home victory over Swansea. The Swans had a massive chance near the end of a spirited second half performance that should have seen them take a point. It wasn’t to be, and Arsenal got away with their first win of the season. Much has been made about the players that Arsenal have let go, and the likes of Gervinho coming in to the attack really haven’t done enough to take the spotlight away from those departed. Yes, Arsene Wenger has injury problems with Aaron Ramsey and Jack Wilshere out, leaving a hole in the middle of the park, but for a team who have been in the top four for so long, they should have quality in depth. Arsenal don’t and it is showing. There was the horror show of an 8-2 defeat at Old Trafford, which highlighted a lot of Arsenal’s problems. There is no real leader at the back (they have the second worst defensive record in the league at the moment), no-one strong enough to take the game by the scruff of the neck in the middle of the park and chances not being created. You do feel that if they lose Robin van Persie for any significant length of time, Arsenal are not going to pack a big punch up front. They are still trying to string together their pretty football, but there hasn’t been the end product, which may be coming from a big lack of confidence. Wenger remains a man under pressure for different reasons than his opposite number on Saturday. Three points away from home would do wonders in the attempt to set things right.
Head to Head: The Gunners have at least taken some positive results against Blackburn in the past. They sneaked out with a 2-1 win from Ewood Park, but were held 0-0 at the Emirates last season. Blackburn have struggled to beat Arsenal at home, and their 2-1 win in the 2009/10 season remains the only home win in five matches now at Ewood Park. In the last thirteen matches in total between these two, Blackburn have won just two. The stats make for pretty even reading therefore between the two at Ewood Park, where there have been 57 meetings in total. Blackburn have won 20, Arsenal 22 and 15 draws. This is why this match is going to be interesting. Two close results last year, and both sides struggling this season.
Online Bookmaker Promotion: BetFred are running their Double Delight, Hattrick Heaven for the Blackburn v Arsenal betting. If your First Goalscorer selection scores the first goal of the match, and then carries on to get a second at any time, you will be paid out double odds. If your First Goalscorer selection then buries a hat trick after opening the scoring, then you will be paid out treble your initial odds. Will someone like Robin van Persie burst out? Popular bookie BetFred offer £50 in free bets for new customers registering an account.
23rd August 2011 / Lee A Jackson - Category:
Carling Cup betting is a big feature of this week’s football wagers, so what do we have in store. The teams involved in European action are not in action yet, but the rest of the Premier League teams prepare themselves for some tricky ties. The second round of the Carling Cup is always great for picking up some extra bonuses in your football betting, because not all of the top teams take this too seriously, and therefore, you are more prone to seeing an underdog have their day. The Carling Cup second round betting will naturally focus mostly on the fortunes of the Premier League teams, and he we take a quick look at what is on offer for the matches on Tuesday and Wednesday this week.
Aston Villa v Hereford
With a solid start to the season from Alex McLeish at Villa Park, they are one of the Premier League teams with an easier looking Carling Cup tie. Hereford are stuck on one point from four games, second from bottom of League Two. So there are no immediate signs of an upset here, certainly not at Villa Park.
Prediction: Villa win 2/9 at Bet365 (Draw 11/2, Hereford 33/2)
Bournemouth v West Brom
Maybe a potential for a slip here from the Premier League side. Now, with West Brom having lost their two opening league matches against Man Utd and Chelsea, boss Roy Hodgson may want to keep his best players rested for next weekend. So this could be a tricky away match with the depth of the Baggies squad not too deep. Bournemouth have only one win from four matches in League One though, so wouldn’t be surprised to see a close thing here.
Prediction: Draw 11/4 at Victor Chandler (Bournemouth 3/1, West Brom Evens)
Brighton v Sunderland
If this had been the Sunderland from last season heading down to Brighton, then we would have been calling this differently. Brighton are doing alright, up in fourth in the Npower Championship, so Sunderland have to be wary here. They will be smarting from losing their derby match against Newcastle at the Stadium of Light on the weekend in the Premier League, so boss Steve Bruce needs a reaction. Not an attractive tie for Sunderland, but we feel that they will get through this tough task. They have built a good enough squad to change things up for the Carling Cup.
Prediction: Sunderland win 8/5 at Totesport (Bright 2/1, Draw 5/2)
Northampton v Wolves
Wolves don’t have too far to go for this one, as they look to safely negotiate their way past the League Two side. Northampton are in 17th in League Two, not producing anything spectacular so far. You think of Wolves when you think of Premier League teams who may get a shock in the cups. However, with two wins from two in the league for Mick McCarthy’s side (which no-one surely saw coming), you have to back the Premier League team to get a result.
Prediction: Wolves win 4/5 at Bet365 (Northampton 4/1, Draw 11/4)
Norwich v MK Dons
When you think of Premier League teams most in danger in the early rounds of the Carling Cup, you think of the newly promoted teams. Norwich City take on League One leaders the MK Dons, who haven’t tasted defeat in their four league matches so far. As for Norwich, they will be relatively pleased with their start in the Premier League, with two draws under their belt so far. If this fixture was reversed, we would be suggesting something different, but we think that the home advantage here should just be enough to see Norwich not lose. The MK Dons will come and battle. Could be worth a draw.
Prediction: Draw 37/13 at Victor Chandler (Norwich 4/6, MK Dons 5/1)
QPR v Rochdale
QPR had a rough introduction to the Premier League, getting hammered on their opening day, but they bounced back with a great 1-0 victory away at Everton. That will have been a great boost for them. This should be a chance to cut loose a little bit and forget about the heightened stresses of the Premier League. Rochdale, who are down in the relegation zone in League One, may have a tough time of it.
Prediction: QPR win 8/13 at SkyBet (Draw 16/5, Rochdale 6/1)
Shrewsbury v Swansea
League Two opposition in Shrewsbury will be welcomed by Swansea. The Swans have picked up one point from their opening two Premier League matches, but they should be able to enjoy this match. Sure, they’ll have bigger things on their mind, but they can stretch their legs here.
Prediction: Swansea win 11/13 at Bet365 (Shrewsbury 7/2, Draw 11/4)
Exeter v Liverpool
Yes, Liverpool have been recent Carling Cup victims in shock loses. However, this trip to Exeter, who are in the wrong half of League One, shouldn’t be too scary for them. Liverpool are a much better squad than last year, and we should see a strong enough Liverpool side to finish this job off at the first attempt.
Prediction: Liverpool win 5/12 at Paddy Power (Exeter 8/1, Draw 15/4)
Blackburn v Sheffield Wednesday
As predicted, we though Blackburn may struggle this season again. Two defeats in two games is not what the new owners wanted to see, and now they need to give the fans something to cheer about in the Carling Cup. Sheffield Wednesday will probably be banking on at least a draw here. They have won their two home games in League One this season, and lost both of their away games. Good incentive here to claim a big Premier League scalp.
Prediction: Draw 3/1 at Bet365 (Blackburn 4/7, Sheffield Wednesday 11/2)
Bolton v Macclesfield
Mixed fortunes for Bolton at the start of the new season, but they are very tough to beat at the Reebok, so would back them for a win here. League Two side Macclesfield really shouldn’t cause Bolton too many problems. Owen Coyle’s men should get this job done comfortably enough.
Prediction: Bolton win 1/3 at Stan James (Draw 9/2, Macclesfield 10/1)
Everton v Sheffield United
Very interesting tie here. Sheffield United have started the season in League One very well, sitting in third at the moment, unbeaten. In contrast, Everton were dealt a major blow, losing at Goodison Park to Premier League new boys QPR. You never know with Everton, as they don’t give much away. Could be a sniff of an upset here if Sheffield United are brave enough.
Prediction: Draw 18/5 at Bet365 (Everton 5/11, Sheffield United 8/1)
24th February 2011 / Lee A Jackson - Category:
Arsenal v Birmingham City Betting Tip & Odds: Surely the long wait for Arsenal to end their silverware drought is over. They are firm favourites here to lift the cup and rightly so, as they are, plain and simple, a better team than Birmingham City. Arsenal are enjoying a strong season, firing on all four fronts and with a thrilling win over Barcelona in the Champions League last week, and a battling win over Stoke in the week, they are going strongly. They are the Premier League’s joint top scorers and have netted over twice as many as Birmingham have there, and you always expect goals to come from the Gunners. With the wide open space, Arsenal should cut through Birmingham City, and it could be all a matter of just how long Birmingham can hold out for. So nothing wrong with an Arsenal -1.25 Asian Handicap for 6/5 at Bet365. They have the class to win by a couple of goals.
Arsenal to win: 8/15 at Bet365
Draw: 10/3 at Boylesports
Birmingham City to win: 7/1 at Stan James
Arsenal Form: Simply chugging along nicely. They have had their troubles in cup competitions this year though, losing away at Ipswich in the first leg of the Carling Cup semi final, and needing a late penalty to salvage a draw against Leeds at the Emirates in the FA Cup, struggling past Huddersfield and then being held to a draw at Leyton Orient in the same competition. It hasn’t always been their strength these cup matches this season, but then again, it hasn’t been their strongest side which Arsene Wenger has put out. It hasn’t been the weakened side full of youngster, but more of the fringe players who are challenging for first team starts, and that has made a difference to Arsenal’s mentality this season. Now they look sure to pick up their first trophy since 2005 when they last won the FA Cup. In good form all round really, and that is thanks to the strong squad which Arsene Wenger has assembled. Second in the league, in the League Cup final, holding an advantage over Barcelona in the Champions League and in the hunt for the FA Cup. No doubt Arsene Wenger will send out the full force of the Gunners to face Birmingham in the final, as this is the time for the stars to shine for the Gunners. They will be overwhelming favourites because of their famed passing game, which can control matches with possession, but also provide a lethal threat on the counter attack. With all of the space which they will get at Wembley, you would expect Arsenal to control the lions share of possession though, and create the bulk of the chances up front. The Gunners just carry such a big threat going forward, and they are able to use speed and width to break teams. Robin van Persie is in incredible goal scoring form at the moment, ably supported by Samir Nasri, one of the best players in the Premier League this year. Should have too much power for Birmingham to cope with.
Arsenal’s Road to the Final
It took a great display against North London rivals Tottenham Hotspur to get the Gunners going in the tournament this year. They thumped their neighbours 4-1, and hit four goals again in the next round, beating Premier League side Newcastle 4-0. The clean sheets in the tournament then continued with a 2-0 win over Wigan, and then the Gunners needed a strong 3-0 second leg victory over Ipswich in the semi final, after they had lost the first leg 1-0 at Portman Road. That is 13 goals scored and just 2 conceded in the tournament. Strong.
Birmingham City Form: This is Birmingham’s big distraction and would be a bright spark in their season. Their Premier League survival is far from ensured, sitting just three points above the drop zone. However, they have picked their league form lately, picking up a valuable couple of wins, before blowing things at home against Newcastle. The big problem with Birmingham is that struggle for goals, and they are the Premier League’s lowest scoring team, with just 25 in 27 matches. What should weigh your betting decision on the 2011 Carling Cup final, is whether or not Birmingham can outscore Arsenal on the day. This is a one of match of course and anything can happen, but there is such a difference between the goal scoring records of the two teams that you can only go with form and class. The Gunners have hit 57 goals in the league compared to those 25 from the Blues. Strong advantage, and Birmingham have won just three out of their last eight league matches. They have shown a lot of battling resilience to get to Wembley, and that has been against teams of lower quality than Arsenal. It is a big day out for Alex McLeish and his men, who have tried to take on more of an attacking role this season, but they haven’t progressed. They still pick up a lot of draws and are lacking that edge to go on and win enough matches to make them a comfortable top half of the table team in England.
Birmingham’s Road to the Final
Birmingham have had more of a struggle than Arsenal. They had to fight hard for a 3-2 win over Rochdale, and then they needed penalties to get past Brentford in the next round. It was another mighty tussle then against Midlands neighbours Aston Villa which Birmingham won with a late goal, and they had to over turn a 2-1 first leg deficit against West Ham. Birmingham won the second leg 2-1, sending the tie to extra time, where Craig Gardner got the all important goal for the Blues. That is 7 goals scored, and 6 conceded. Stark contrast to the fortunes of Arsenal on the road to Wembley.
Head to Head: Arsenal won the Premier League match between the two sides at the Emirates 2-1, before romping to a 3-0 away victory at St Andrews on New Year’s Day. The impetus is all with the Gunners in this one. The last time the two sides met in the League Cup was back in the 1997/98 season when Arsenal won 4-1. Birmingham have won just one of the following 14 matches between the two sides since then. Worth looking at the overall head to head between them, and Arsenal have won 59 matches, Birmingham 38 and they have played out 35 draws. Arsenal average 1.62 goals per game against Birmingham, while in reply, Birmingham have managed 1.3 goals per game against the Gunners. Birmingham’s biggest threat will come from set plays, and trying to mix it up physically against the Arsenal defence, because in a passing game, they are not going to have the skill or quality to match the Gunners.
Stats and Trends
Birmingham have conceded the first goal in seven of their last nine Carling Cup matches. If that happens against Arsenal, it’ll be a long way back for them. Their best chance will be from a set play, as six of the eight Premier League goals scored against the Gunners have been from set plays. Birmingham are the Premier League’s set play specialists, hitting goals from 56% of their set plays. Adversely Arsenal have conceded the most set play goals in the league, which against points to the way in which Birmingham will get a goal in this match. In the goal scoring trends, Arsenal’s Samir Nasri has found the back of the net in all three of his matches against Birmingham for Arsenal, while Robin van Persie is on five goals in his last three matches (all competitions). The Gunners go into the match on an eleven game unbeaten run, and are the only team in the Premier League who have not lost a match during 2011.
Last 5 Head to Head
Birmingham 0, Arsenal 3
Arsenal 2, Birmingham 1
Birmingham 1, Arsenal 1
Arsenal 3, Birmingham 1
Birmingham 2, Arsenal 2