Soccer Picks for Schalke vs. Mainz

Mike Richardson

Thursday, February 20, 2014 6:42 PM GMT

Thursday, Feb. 20, 2014 6:42 PM GMT

Friday night gives your Humble Handicapper and your good selves a change to start the weekend with a wodge in your pocket thanks to this little money spinner over in Germany’s top flight. Schalke take on Mainz, in a game sure to have value soccer picks in it.

Schalke are on a mini-role at present and took Bayer Leverkusen down a peg, 2-1 thanks to Huntelaar’s late winner who scored with 12 minutes remaining to seal the win. Schalke went ahead through Leon Goretzka's first half strike, but Leverkusen equalised from Felipe Santana's own goal just past the hour. Then the late goal from Huntelaar saw Jens Keller's side take all the points. This means that Schalke are on a four game winning run at time of press. Mainz have also won four of their last five, but were beaten just two games ago (3-1 away to Wolfsburg).

Enough with past matches…WHERE’S THE MONEY MIKE?

This is what the bookies think about each sides chances of winning.  Schalke are the favourites at 4/6 while Mainz are very much the under dogs at 4/1, and a draw is at 14/5. Possible upset alert! We haven’t seen a home victory in clashes between these two sides since Sep 2012 when Schalke beat Mainz 1-0, but the bookies seem to think we’ll see one this time.

The meetings between these sides seem to be close run affairs we’ve had two draws in the last five and whenever we’ve seen a clear winner, it's been by a 1 goal margin (twice (2-1 and 1-0)).   The only one that sticks out like a sore thumb is a 3-0 home win to Schalke back in September 2012; a repeat of that score is offered up at best soccer odds of 14/1. But I don’t think that’s likely.

What makes more sense is to back the game being won by a single goal at 11/10, but that is pretty tight odds. It’s hardly better looking at Schalke to win by a single goal at 11/4. But if you were just after a safe bet you wouldn’t be reading this far down.

What does the table tell us?

Schalke are on a bit of a tear at the minute running high up the table 4th in the league just two points behind Bayer Leverkusen. They do have a four point cushion on the team behind them (Vfl Wolfsburg) but a four point cushion isn’t a comfortable cushion. Mainz are down in 7th place on 33 points.

Mainz have a goal difference of -4, having scored 31 goals and conceding 35. After 21 games, that averages out to about 1.5 goals scored and conceded per game, as we can’t have ½ goals that gives us less help, but it is useful to know that they tend to concede more than they score. Schalke have scored 41 goals in 21 games that’s almost an average of 2 per game, and they conceded 30, again that’s about 1.5 per game.

Throw all that into the mental mix and add on the fact that the bookies like Schalke winning both halves (at 7/5), drawing on the 45, and then winning on the 90 (at7/2). The game being drawn on the 45 and the 90 (11/2) before they like Mainz winning (both halves at 15/2) shows us who will be walking away with the points. We feel confident taking Schalke in our soccer picks.

Prediction: 2-1 to Schalke available at best soccer odds of 8/1 with BetVictor.

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