Soccer Picks Hellas Verona vs. Juventus

Nila Amerova

Thursday, February 6, 2014 1:38 PM UTC

Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014 1:38 PM UTC

Juventus is ready to advance their lead in Serie A when they descend on Hellas Verona. Here’s a primer on this captivating Serie A tilt complete with soccer free picks.

Runaway league leaders

Juventus preside over the Serie A table with a comfortable nine-point edge over their nearest title rivals Roma. And they’ll be looking to extend that edge to 12 points at the weekend with a victory over Hellas Verona.

Sportsbooks are certainly confident the Old Lady will accomplish the feat, installing Juventus as the prohibitive road favourites at -225 to win outright or thereabouts across sportsbook platforms.

Still smarting from Coppa Italia defeat to Roma a fortnight ago, Juventus went on to settle on 1-1 draw to Lazio on the road, a happenstance that kick started rampant speculation about whether that rare waffle was in fact a sign of a potential slump starting. But quick as those thoughts began so they ended. A resounding 3-1 victory over Inter Milan last weekend snuffed that debate in one decisive fell swoop.

Restored to winning, the overwhelming expectation is that Juventus will continue on that rich vein of form, effectively rendering their recent blemish over a six-game road stretch in Serie A a moot point. (They are 5-1-0 in their last six Serie A road games; their last road defeat was a 4-2 defeat to Fiorentina on October 20).

It’s worth mentioning however that Juventus are 2-1-2 in their last five road games across all competitions; dating from December 11 to January 25 this run in some respects can be looked upon as truer assessment of recent form. Of course, it remains to be seen which form prevails. What’s more, it’s quite common to have league form differ drastically from form in other competitions and a combination of form across competitions.

Perhaps the appropriate approach can be found in a look at Hellas Verona’s chances against the league leaders, determining whether the whopping +600 soccer odds for the home win represent a serious underestimation of their abilities, which in turn will allow us to better assess Juventus’ soccer betting value.

Hellas Verona occupy a coveted fifth spot in the Serie A table on the merit of an 11-2-9 record and 35 points. They are six points behind Fiorentina and nine points adrift of Napoli in the table, fourth and third respectively. But they are just two points ahead of both Inter Milan and Torino and three points ahead of Parma, their nearest threats in the table. 

Recent form has been somewhat inconsistent of late – they are 3-0-3 in their last six league fixtures home and away and recent home form is an identical 3-0-3. But overall home form stands at 8-0-3, which clearly indicates that the setbacks have come in recent months.

In fact, Hellas Verona surprising started the season brightly at home, reeling off six straight victories before succumbing to defeat against Chievo on November 23. That they quickly bounced back with victories over Atalanta and Lazio was commendable. Important even as dates with top opposition Napoli and Roma loomed ahead and that – the brutal truth – they would dish out defeats was largely expected as the feature item on the menu.

Of course, there is no shame in defeat to top opposition but that Hellas Verona have a tendency to come up wanting against top opposition suggests an inferiority complex that is hard to ignore, making it all the more unlikely that they would produce anything meaningful against the Juve juggernaut.

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Soccer Betting Verdict: According to the table this is a clash of Top 5 Serie A clubs but nothing could be more misleading than that notion. It’s immediately obvious that there is a colossal gap in both quality and skill as well as a difference in club mentality, where one puts a premium on winning and the other is simply content to competing as best as it can. Nothing wrong with either approach when both, if carried out successfully, ensure top-flight survival; after all, that is a prize too. But in terms of soccer betting, it’s helpfully telling.

Juventus are the correct favourites at -225 to win outright at Bet365 and, by all accounts, they should come through as your value soccer pick in this matchup. What’s more, expect a Juventus hammering here with the Over 2.5 at -150. And a comprehensive performance by Juventus from start to finish that is best represented by the double result market with Juventus winning both halves at +100.

Recommended Soccer Free Picks: Juventus to win outright at -225, Over 2.5 at -150 and Juventus to win both halves at +100.

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