Best bets European soccer
The top flights in Spain and Italy return to action this coming weekend after a long winter break and there are some intriguing fixtures to look forward to. In La Liga the two-horsed title race between Real Madrid and Barcelona is heating up and both teams need wins, while in Italy, Roma, Napoli and Milan are desperately trying to cling to Juventus’ coattails. Here we round up some of the best bets from across the Europe’s top leagues, bearing in mind Germany is still on a winter break and the Premiership is breaking for the FA Cup:
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MONDAY'S BETS BETS IN WORLD CUP QUALIFICATION
THE World Cup qualifiers continue on Monday and we’ve got two bets for you enjoyment for the day’s fixtures.
The first bet is my strongest of the day and it comes in Group G when Albania host Macedonia in Tirana.
Albania were excellent in qualification for last summers Euro 2016, but when the reached their first major finals despite some good play, especially in their opening match with hosts France they just couldn’t put the ball in the net and they only managed just one goal all tournament, which was in their 1-0 win in the dead-rubber against Romania.
Gianni De Biasi’s side are the favourites for this and on the evidence of their qualifying campaign rightly so and many will be out in force to take the 1.85 on Albania with Paddy Power, especially after an impressive recent home friendly win against France and they should win this, but their inability to score goals is a major concern for odds-on backers.
In every Albanian match at Euro 2016 both under 2.5 goals and both teams to score as a “no” where both winning bets and in their season opening friendly last week they drew 0-0 at home with Morocco and the best bets in this one are both those markets again.
These two nations have met six times since 2000 and five of them have featured under 2.5 goals and five have also seen both teams failing to score and at 1.62 on the unders with Marathonbet and 1.57 with the same firm on the “no” in the BTTS, they both look a bit “captain obvious” but it’s hard to look past them.
At a tastier price their has been a couple of 0-0 draws in the last two internationals between these nations and it was 0-0 again in Albania’s last international so no goalscorer is also worth playing at 7.00 with BetVictor.
ONE of the most disappointing sides at the summers Euros along with England were Republic of Ireland and despite their win over an already qualified Italy, they did very little in France to suggest that they will be a major force in this World Cup qualification campaign.
That win against the Azzuri was only the Irish’s second success in their last eight matches and a recent 4-0 friendly win against Oman is only papering the cracks of a squad that is starting to look very old.
Ireland make the tough trip to Serbia as 4.33 outsiders and without the goals of record goalscorer Robbie Keane I just can’t see them troubling a very good Serbian side.
In Belgrage the Serbs are very hard to beat with just three loses in their last 20 home internationals and the only team to beat them last season where European Champions Portugal and that shows you the tough challenge the Irish face on Monday.
They’ve met three times in the last few years and Ireland have never beaten them including a 2-1 defeat in their last meeting in Dublin in 2014 and the 2.05 with Betway and Betfred on the home side to win this looks the wrong price.
The UK bookies have made the prices that the have as they expect to see the patriotic money come in for the Irish, I don’t believe that punters are that silly any more and I would make the layers pay by snapping up the Serbia price now.
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE MATCHES
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE MATCHES
The Champions League group stages are less than two weeks away and the draw has handed out some mouthwatering ties and also some fantastic bets.
The two biggest games on the opening night – Tuesday, September 12th – both feature British sides with the highlight of the evening Premier League giants Arsenal’s trip to Paris to face a new-look PSG at the Parc des Princes. The Gunners’ have had a mixed start to the new Premier League season, but with manager Arsene Wenger finally spending some of the millions in the Emirates bank account, they will go into the Champions League in confident mood. Wenger has spent £92 million in the transfer window with the marquee signings of striker Lucas Perez and German international defender Shkodran Mustafi brought in on the transfer deadline day eve and that should give the squad some extra impetus and the 4.50 on a Gunners’ win in Paris looks very tempting and mightn’t be around on the night of the match.
It’s was all change in the French capital in the summer with Unai Emery arriving to replace Laurent Blanc and star-man Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s exit to Manchester United. Emery has brought in four new faces with their big summer signing Jese from Real Madrid, but from the evidence of their 3-1 defeat at Monaco in Ligue 1 they’ve got a tough job on their hands domestically and they can forget any chance of European success and odds of 1.75 to beat Arsenal look far too short.
The other big game on the opening night is when Celtic travel to the Camp Nou to take on tournament favourites Barcelona.
The Scottish champions haven’t won away from Glasgow in their three qualification away games with the major embarrassment a 1-0 defeat against Lincoln the part-timers of Gibraltar.
This could be very one-sided and odds of 41.00 on a Celtic win with Coral doesn’t tempt me at all and Barcelona -2 goals at 1.66 with Paddy Power looks the sensible option.
On Wednesday, September 13th Premier League champions Leicester make their Champions League debut in Group G with a straight forward visit to Brugge.
The Foxes’ couldn’t have hoped for an easier group with Porto, Brugges and FC Copenhagen their opponents and they look a decent bet to win in Belgium at 2.55 with Sportingbet.
The night’s big game is in Turin where Juventus host Europa League holders Sevilla.
I am expecting big things from “the old lady” in this year’s Champions League and despite Paul Pogba leaving for Old Trafford the signings of Gonzalo Higuain and Dani Alves, look great replacements and could be the missing pieces of the jigsaw for The Bianconeri.
Coach Massimiliano Allegri knows that he’s got the most formidable defence in Europe and now with the goals from Higuain on his side, not only does the 1.70 with Marathonbet look a big price for them to start their campaign with a win so does the 13.0 with a number of firms on them ending it as champions of Europe for a third time.
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Update 3/31/2016: MarathonBet has addressed the complaint with Sportsbook Review and stated that the player provided non-genuine ID.
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