Soccer Picks: Cagliari vs. Juventus

Nila Amerova

Tuesday, January 7, 2014 6:34 PM GMT

Serie A leaders Juventus look to maintain their significant lead in the Scudetto race when they take on Cagliari. Find out what soccer betting odds are currently in swing and where value soccer picks can be found.

Juventus have eight-point edge in Scudetto race

Juventus increased their lead in the Scudetto race last weekend with a convincing 3-0 victory over Roma, coming through on their fancied -150 soccer odds to win outright. It seems sportsbooks were on the money with this match indeed, calling it just right.

Juventus’ outstanding domestic campaign amounts to a 16-1-1 mark and 49 points, eight points clear of potential title rivals Roma, ten points ahead of Napoli. Home form is an unblemished 9-0-0 and includes netting 26 goals (an average of 2.8 per game) and conceding just four.

The funny thing is Juventus are beatable. Europe’s top-flight competition showed just how beatable they really are when they were forced to bow out of the competition at the culmination of group action, only to be relegated into second tier Europa league for the remainder of the season. Yet, for some reason, the Italian field hasn’t been able to achieve what some of Europe’s exports were able to do so successfully – stifle their offense and beat Buffon at the same time. Put that against the fact that Juventus boasts one of the worlds’ best goalies today, as well as currently claiming one of the best defences on paper, which has allowed just 11 goals through 18 fixtures, and that untimely exit from Europe’s top flight is made even more remarkable of an achievement.

The status quo being as it is in Italy, it should come as no surprise that Juventus have the market cornered at -1000 to win outright at Bet365. It’s a one-horse race for the Scudetto title and – the outrageousness of it all – still half a season to go. Roma, their nearest rivals in the table are listed at +800 to win outright while Napoli are floating somewhere in high seas, at +1200 (or thereabouts depending on the online sportsbook of choice) to win outright.

That same vote of confidence transcends Serie A match-betting markets where Juventus are listed as the hot -225 favourites to beat Cagliari on the road. The hosts meanwhile are a dubious +600 bet to deliver the home victory and comparable long shot soccer pick to hold Juventus to the draw at +333 at Bet365.

Cagliari are sat 12th in the league table following a 4-9-5 mark and 21 points. Four wins on the entire season to date is hardly a recommendation for the upset win. But recent form has been good, which suggests Cagliari shouldn’t be written off entirely. In fact, they do have a reasonable shot in this match on the draw.

Cagliari are enjoying an undefeated run of seven games in a row comprised of two wins and five draws, including an auspicious scoreless draw to Roma (away) and a 1-1 draw to Napoli (at home). They are 2-2-1 in their last five fixtures at home with a 2-1 win over Torino (ranked seventh) and a 2-1 win over Genoa (ranked eighth). 

Soccer betting verdict: It’ll be the first meeting this season between Juventus and Cagliari. Last season, Juventus beat Cagliari 3-1 at Stadio Sant’Elia while Cagliari, somewhat surprisingly, managed to hold Juventus to a 1-1 draw at Turin in the reverse leg. Given how dominant Juventus are this season in Serie A, they deserve to be considered the strong favourites at -225 at Bet365. More likely than not they will come through on those odds and, thus, they are the smart soccer pick.

That said Cagliari have a slim shot in this match for the draw even if sportsbooks are pricing the outcome long at +333 soccer odds. Seven games undefeated does wonders to the confidence and morale of a team. Granted, Juventus are in a league of their own right now. But Cagliari have nothing to lose and everything to gain. They took the measure of both Roma and Napoli, the only two credible title threats outside of Juventus after all.

Soccer Free Picks: Draw at +333

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