EPL Soccer Picks: Stoke City vs. QPR

Nikki Adams

Wednesday, January 28, 2015 7:27 PM UTC

Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015 7:27 PM UTC

Stoke City look to extend their winning form at the expense of the hapless Queens Park Rangers in week 23 EPL betting. Will Stoke take all three points and come through for soccer bettors as the significant faves? Here's a primer on this fixture complete with soccer picks.

EPL Betting Week 23 Odds for Stoke vs. QPR
Soccer odds list Stoke City as the -163 home favesand for good reason. It's a winnable game at Britannia Stadium against relegation threatened QPR (currently trading at large +450 odds), who have the dubious marker of being absolutely winless and pointless on the road this season. Hence, even the probability of a draw in this game is deemed unlikely at +280 soccer odds.

Do the bookies have it right? Hmmmm....


Unassuming Potters 
Stoke City are comfortably ensconced in the middle of the Premier League table, tenth in the standings with an 8-5-9 mark and 29 points and a point adrift of Swansea City in ninth place. The Potters have enjoyed good form home and away through 22 laps around the league: 4-5-2 at home and 4-3-5 away. Importantly, they are on a run of nice form with just one loss in their last five games (3-1-1) despite coming up against some solid teams in those. They held Manchester United to a 1-1 draw at Britannia Stadium and beat Everton on the road (a top 6 club last season). The other wins were over West Brom (home) and Leicester City (away). Only the Gunners beat the Potters, albeit at the Emirates Stadium 3-0.

Home form in their last six is a so-so 2-2-2. It includes great results such as a 3-2 win over Arsenal (5th) and a 2-0 win over West Brom (14th), and a 2-2 draw to West Ham United (7th) and a 1-1 draw to Man United (4th).  It also includes a 2-0 loss to Chelsea and a rather unexpected 2-1 loss to Burnley (17th going into week 23 EPL betting). Looking beyond these recent results, lowly clubs such as Aston Villa and Leicester City have also been able to beat the Potters at Britannia Stadium this season.


Rangers Woeful On the Road
Queens Park Rangers are firmly cemented in the regulation mix behind a 5-4-13 record on the season, which includes a dubious road record. Not only are they winless but absolutely pointless in their travels in England's top flight with a 0-0-10 mark. Worse reading is provided in the goals for and against column, which are as follows: a paltry five scored and a whopping 24 conceded (or a minus -19 differential).

Things are looking dire for Harry Redknapp and the Rangers and if they don't get off the mark on the road soon, demotion is all but certain. Most worryingly those road woes seem to have finally permeated into home form. After going 5-3-2 in their first ten home games up to the New Year, they've since gone 0-1-2 at Loftus Road Stadium. A 2-0 loss to Man U may be excused simply on gap in depth and quality. But a 3-0 loss to third-tier Sheffield United in FA Cup is tough to brush aside.


Why The Rangers Could Win 
There's an argument to be had about poorly records being permits to underestimate. The Potters did take for granted other top-flight lightweights this season to their own detriment. It follows they could make a similar mistake here. It's also no secret the Rangers are desperate for crumbs of succour on the road and desperation can inspire positive results. TEN losses, ZERO points on the road is bleak. It's the epitome of desperation. That could sway soccer bettors, who would subscribe to the Law of Averages: streaks inevitably ending (be these winning or losing streaks). Add to that the temptation of the soccer odds on the table – who's going to skim over the +450 on offer for the outright win and +280 on offer for the draw without giving it serious thought before passing on either one? – and some pretty lucid reasons to back the Rangers on your soccer picks emerge.


Why the Potters Should Win
A nice proverb springs to mind: Beware of Greeks bearing gifts. Not to be all philosophical about this game, but bookies aren't in the business of random generosity. They're confident in Stoke City's stock value and so it follows this game is undoubtedly priced correctly. The Potters deserve to be the firm -163 home faves while the Rangers the decided +450 underdogs.

What bookies or soccer bettors or experts alike can't account for is fate. Games aren't won on paper but on the field. It doesn't always go to script, not to mention Lady Luck has been known to strut her stuff on to the field on occasion to stunning effect. Whether the Rangers will snap their negative road trend at Britannia Stadium remains to be seen, but it will certainly take something special, if not Lady Luck herself racing up and down the field as the 12th player in their kit. For our money, we're putting premium on current form rather than the elusive lady and backing the Potters to win straight up at -163 for our soccer picks.

Soccer Picks: Stoke City -163

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