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English Premier League Preview
Posted 06 May 2012 - 09:49 AM
Newcastle Preview: Newcastle have won seven of their last eight in the Premier League, with only that blip against Wigan upsetting their great run. Their last two matches have been away from home, so they will be happy to get back to St James’ Park where they have won the last four straight. Just as impressive as their incredible strike force has been, their defence has also stepped up to the mark in a big way. Six of their last eight matches have produced a clean sheet, which is a fantastic run, and it is why they will give Manchester City a tough time on Sunday. The Magpies haven’t conceded a goal in their last four home matches now and that is a great record to hold on to. At home this season, Newcastle have produced a W11 D5 L2 record for the season, and they are unbeaten in their last nine there. They have scored in each of their ten home games, and Papiss Cisse has now netted eleven in the last eight leaguematches. So he is the one to watch in the goalscorer markets. Newcastle went down heavily 3-1 at the Etihad Stadium earlier in the season, but they are a much improved side since then and in particularly good form. They have the forward power and creativity to match City.
Manchester City Preview: Manchester City have won their last two away matches, beating Norwich 6-1 and then Wolves 2-0. Granted, the trip to Newcastle is going to be a lot tougher than either of those two matches, but they have recovered some away form at least. If City do end up losing out in the title race, then it will be down to their away form. City hold a W9 D4 L5 away record for the season, and while they are scoring at a healthy rate of an average of 2.00 goals per game, and conceding under a goal per game on their travels, they haven’t been totally convincing on the road. They have won just two of their last five, which isn’t a great record, and up until recently they have struggled to put the ball in the back of the netaway from home. However, the return of Carlos Tevez could yet prove to be the big factor in their season. He has given them an extra dimension up front with Sergio Aguero, and Mancini also reneged on his statement that Mario Balotelli wouldn’t play again this season after getting sent off against Arsenal. All the stops really have to come out now for City, because if they can win this one, then the title should be theirs.
Odds: 5.20 3.80 1.65
Form (most recent result last): Newcastle WWWLW, Man City LWWWW
Manchester City have won their last two games against Newcastle by a 3-1 scoreline
City have won seven of eight EPL matches against the Magpies
City have the joint highest tally of away goals this season
Newcastle have the highest proportion of first half goals this season
Papiss Cisse has thirteen goals in 12 EPL appearances
Recommended Bet: Well, this is really one of the toughest matches of the season to call. Newcastle are tanking along at home, while City have picked up their pace. City have a great record against Newcastle and that may just be the thing to get them through this.
Posted 06 May 2012 - 09:53 AM
Manchester United Preview: The Red Devils had a comfortable eight point lead at one point, but that has slowly been whittled away.Now they have to produce at Old Trafford, but because of that immediate need, most punters aren’t looking beyond a strong home win for the Red Devils. United did slip up badly in their last home match, when they threw away a 4-2 lead over Everton with twenty minutes to go. They came away with just a point on that occasion, but that was their first home match in eight in which they failed to pick up all three points. United’s title Challenge has wobbled, but it hasn’t fallen over just yet. They are in good enough form at home to secure three points here without too much trouble. A W14 D2 L2 record at Old Trafford the season, having scored in every one of those eighteen home games, suggests that this will be a three pointer for them. Manchester United have yet to concede a goal in the first fifteen minutes of any match, and they have opened the scoring in 78% of their games this season. United battled to a 1-0 win at the Liberty Stadium earlier in the season, but Sunday’s scoreline should be better than that.Wayne Rooney has scored in each of the last six home matches, so worth looking at in your goalscorer markets.
Swansea Preview: They blew a three nil lead against Wolves at the Liberty Stadium last weekend, which should never have happened. They also dominated their previous game against Bolton, but just couldn’t find a winning goal. It adds up to Swansea not having won on the road in their last three matches. In their last six away from the Liberty Stadium, Swansea have lost three, drawn one and won two. In total this season, Swansea have W4 D4 L10 on the road, and that record can all be pointed back to a lack of goal. The Swans average less than a goal per game on the road this season, while they are conceding on average 1.72. So not a great standing to be in to head to Old Trafford, but the pressure is all off the shoulders of Swansea. They have their Premier League status secured and build on the achievements of this season. Back on march 17th, Swansea beat Manchester City, so will they be able to put a spanner in the works of United this time around? If they can get to half time at 0-0, then they may be just able to take advantage of an edgy United and catch them on the break.
Odds: 1.16 7.00 18.50
Form (most recent result last): Man Utd WLWDL, Swansea LLWDD
Swansea have never won at Old Trafford
United have buried four goals in each of their last two home matches
21% of Swansea’s goals this season have come in the first fifteen minutes
Swansea have won just one of the last seven in the EPL
If United concede, it will be the first time in over twenty years they have conceded 20 goals at home in a season
Recommended Bet: Should be United all the way, and Rooney, who is in incredible form at home, should be the one to initiate it all. He is well worth looking at in the First Goalscorer market. However, this is the kind of match where you would expect United to send a big message to City that they aren’t done yet.
Posted 07 May 2012 - 04:50 AM
West Ham Preview: West Ham looked more like themselves after the pressure of the automatic promotion race was off,but while the job seems half done against Cardiff, West Ham did lose at home to the Bluebirds of the first day of the season. The simple upshot of this is that West Ham have the better control, the better fire-power and they can’t afford to just sit back and expect an easy ride. There is still a long ninety minutes worth of work to put in, but they will be firm favourites to drive on home here. An immediate return to the Premier League after getting relegated last season, looks firmly on the cards at the moment. Allardyce’s men looked professional and in control and should be even stronger at home, where they have lost just four matches all season.
Cardiff Preview: A two goal deficit is going to be a tough thing to overhaul, but they could gain some advantage on set pieces, where they did trouble West Ham at the back. Cardiff may be able to take some confidence from their string of three wins on the road to finish the season off, and they are unbeaten in their last six away matches. So it may not be all over for the Bluebirds just yet, but boss Malky Mackay has a tough tactical call on his hands, trying to find that balance of attack without being too exposed at the back. Eight times on the road this season Cardiff have picked up 1-1 draws, and Peter Whittingham is their top scorer for the season on the road with a haul of seven. Can they trouble the West Ham defence enough?
Odds: 1.68 3.40 5.20
Recommended Bet: West Ham’s form was solid enough at Upton Park over the course of the season, losing just four times. They draw far more than they would like (eight) but they look stronger than Cardiff in the middle of the park and going forward.
Posted 08 May 2012 - 04:47 AM
Liverpool Preview: The only bright spark was that Andy Carroll came to life and his marauding last twenty minutes at least game them some hope. Other than that, Liverpool were direction-less going forward, with no support for Luis Suarez up front. The Reds have won just one of their last eight games at Anfield and they need three points against Chelsea, just to draw level with 8thplaced Fulham. A loss here for the Reds would mean that they could finish no higher than eighth. This is Dalglish’s last chance to shine in front of the Kop for the season, and for players to play for their places next season. Dalglish put down the FA Cup final loss to the relative inexperience of his side compared to that of the core of the Chelsea side. But that doesn’t excuse back to back defeats at Anfield. It doesn’t excuse three defeats and a draw in their last four at Anfield. They don’t have form, and with just a W5 D9 L4 record for the season, they have clicking along at just a 28% success rate. It has been a equally disappointing story in front of goal, where they have managed just 1.1 goals per game at Anfield. Their defence hasn’t been terrible, but the forwards aren’t providing an outlet. Liverpool’s most frequent result at Anfield this season has been six 1-1 draws, and three 0-0 draws. Stats which paints a picture.
Chelsea Preview: The Blues are still in a fight to finish fourth in the Premier League, even though they start five points back of fourth placed Tottenham. This is Chelsea’s game in hand over Spurs and fifth placed Newcastle, and while Chelsea were off enjoying their Wembley celebrations, they were helped out the following day with Spurs being held to a draw, and Newcastle losing. So they were handed a lifeline in the race for a Champions League place and they have to capitalise on it. It it more than likely Di Matteo will make some big changes to the side, with notably Fernando Torres coming back in, as the boss tries to rest his core ahead of the Champions League final against Bayern Munich. But the Blues haven’t been great on the road, as they have only picked up seven points from the last twenty four available away from Stamford Bridge. However, they are unbeaten in their last three, the last two being draws. Chelsea’s away record for the season stands at W6 D7 L5 and have only managed a disappointing 23 goals on the road.
Asian Handicap Odds: 2.19 3.50 3.15
Most recent result last: Liverpool DWLWL, Chelsea WDDWL
Chelsea haven’t scored in five of their last eight EPL Matches against Liverpool
Kenny Dalglish lost his first game in 14 as manager against Chelsea on the weekend
Chelsea have only won one of their last eight away matches
Liverpool have only won at Anfield once in 2012
Recommended Bet: Well, Chelsea have everything to play for, while Liverpool should just be running on pride and revenge. That makes this a difficult match for Chelsea, who haven’t been solid on the road. Nine of Chelsea’s last ten goals conceded have been in the final fifteen minutes of matches. With Chelsea having to change personnel, Liverpool should be able to edge this one, especially if they get Carroll in from the start and taking on a more positive attitude.
Posted 09 May 2012 - 08:42 AM
Atletico Madrid Preview - Atletico Madrid should secure a top six finish in La Liga after a strong finish to the season, and they will be favourites heading to Bucharest for the big match. Atletico are on an eleven match UEFA Europa League winning streak (which includes five straight wins on the road) and so they are in great shape. There is a great attacking prowess about Atletico Madrid, with Adrian Lopez and Falcao in particular standing out up front. Although Adrian has popped up with some important goals, Falcao has really been carrying the weight of responsibility on his shoulders and is joint top scorer on ten goals in the Europa League.
Atletico Madrid were solid at home in La Liga, but they were unpredictable on the road, and struggled for goals away from home as well. However, they have managed to run up this great run in the Europa League. So now Atletico Madrid are back to try and repeat what they achieved in 2010, winning the inaugural Europa League then.
Athletic Bilbao Preview - The two sides have familiar names, they have the same home colours and they each won their respective home fixtures against the other in the league this season. While Atletico Madrid have the greater experience in UEFA competitions, Bilbao are some good value. They are the Europa League’s top scorers this season, netting 30 times in their fourteen fixtures on the way to the final. The big ace up their sleeve is coach Marcelo Bielsa, one of the greatest coaches in world soccer. He is unorthodox, forward thinking and tactically brilliant. He really could be the difference between the two sides, and while Bilbao are nothing more than a mid-table team in La Liga, they have enjoyed a great season in Europe. They are not packed with the household names, not like Atletico, but the one name which does stand out is Fernando Llorente, the key to Bilbao’s success.
This will be the first time these teams have met in a European competition.
These teams have met each other in 150 Spanish league matches, with Atletico having the upper hand with 64 wins. Bilbao have won 59 of their meetings (27 draws).
Both teams won their home encounter with each other this season in La Liga.
Atletico have faced Spanish opposition nine times before in Europe (4-2-3). They are unbeaten in their last five (3-2-0).
Bilbao have met Spanish opposition on one previous occasion. They lost the two-legged match against Barcelona in the 1976/77 UEFA Cup quarter-final.
This is the sixth final in a European tournament between two Spanish clubs, which breaks the Italian record for most European finals between clubs from the same country (5).
This is the second consecutive season that this final will be played between clubs from the same country. Last year, Porto defeated Braga in Dublin.
This will be the first European final played in Romania.
Recommended Bet - This is a tough game to pick. The first option that leaps to mind is both team to score. At 1.80 that is a solid safe looking bet that i will strongly recommend. I expect goals in this match, so would strongly recommend you consider the 2.50 available on Falcao to net yet again, or even the 3.40 available on Adrian, who could well get a few chances if Bilbao concentrate on Falcao. In the end, I just don't trust Bilbaos defence, which always tends to concede in Europe.
Posted 12 May 2012 - 05:34 AM
Man City Preview - So City are on a five match winning streak and in great shape to round out the season successfully you would think against a relegation threatened side. Man City have dropped just two points at home this season, and they can become the third team to amass 55 home points from a Premier League season (joining Chelsea and Man Utd in the feat). The stats of course all add up for Manchester City here, because of their fantastic home record this season, undefeated in eighteen. There is also theirgoalscoring record of an average of 2.88 goals per match, but it has not been all about attack. City have conceded on average just 0.55 goals per game at home this season, and one of the big important markers, is that they have conceded just one goal all season in the first half hour of matches. What does that do? Gives a good base for success in not having to chase matches. Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko and Balotelli are all in double figures for the season, and the latter could make the bench after being left out against Newcastle.
QPR Preview - Former Man City boss Mark Hughes gets the chance to return to his former employees and he could be the one to scupper their celebrations. Hughes insists that revenge is not on his mindafter being sacked from there. QPR also have former City players Joey Barton, Nedum Onuoha and Shaun Wright-Phillips in their squad as they make their first ever visit to the Etihad Stadium. QPR will be heavy underdogs and they need at least a point to guarantee their survival. QPR start two points ahead of Bolton who are in 18th place, but the R’s have a Superior goal difference to the Trotters so a point against City would be enough to keep them up, even if Bolton beat Stoke. But if QPR fail to get that point their fate will be out of their own hands. QPR have shown a tremendous amount of fight in trying to keep themselves up, but all of their successes have come at home, winning their last five straight at Loftus Road, including wins over Spurs, Arsenal and Liverpool. However, they have not been able to replicate that on the road, having lost the last six straight on their travels. City have a history of unexpected outcomes. Can QPR cause one of their biggest moments of hurt? Their away record of W3 D2 L13 doesn’t suggest so.
Most recent result last 5 games - Man City WWWWW, QPR WLWLW
In the latest 33 home games, Manchester City have scored an average of 2.3 goals. While they have conceded 0.64 goals when they have played at home.
In Queens Park Rangers latest 38 away games, they have have managed to score 1.13 goals on average. While playing away, they have on average conceded 1.18 goals.
The PICK - Man City 2-0 QPR
Fixed Odds Bet - Take Man City to win.
Handicap Bet - Main Bet: Take QPR and accept the 2 1/4 ball as they will not lose more than 2 goals here.
Posted 13 May 2012 - 05:25 AM
Sunderland Preview - Martin O’Neill’s men have been having a hard time turning one point into three. They have drawn five of their last eight in the league now, as their revival under O’Neill has just stagnated a little bit. The back bone of a good side is there, they are competitive and hard working, but there is often a lack of finish to their play. In general, they are a pretty tight and solid side, but sometimes, they just don’t turn up to the races. The Black Cats have only lost one of their last eleven at the Stadium of Light, so they are Prime candidates to ruin any chances Man Utd have of winning the league, should City slip up against QPR. Sunderland have drawn their last three matches at home, two of them being 0-0 score lines The Black Cats have failed to score in four of their last six matches.
Man United Preview - Interestingly, the last time that Man City won the league 44 years ago, United had to play Sunderland on the final day of the season, and they lost. Anyway, if they don’t claim the title here, then they will only have themselves to blame. It looked as if Ferguson himself had already admitted defeat in the title race when he sent out an uninspiring side to face City at the Etihad Stadium. United will be without Chris Smalling, Danny Welbeck and Jonny Evans for the match they need to win. United have lost their last two matches on the road, a terrible performance at Wigan and then that loss against Man City. United’s away record for the season is still fantastic, reading W12 D3 L3 and they areaveraging exactly two goals per game, and conceding less than a goal per game on the road. Is there one last hurrah from this current United side? Is there one final twist to prevent United finishing empty handed?
Form - Sunderland LDDDL, Man Utd LWDLW
In the latest 35 home games, Sunderland have scored an average of 1.37 goals.
While they have conceded 1.23 goals when they have played at home.
In Manchester United latest 31 away games, they have have managed to score 1.71 goals on average. While playing away, they have on average conceded 1.13 goals.
Stats - Man Utd have won 14 and lost none of their last 19 Premier League games against Sunderland.
The Pick - Sunderland 0-2 Manchester United
Posted 14 May 2012 - 06:04 AM
IFK Göteborg Preview – They has slight historical advantage over Malmö FF with 59 against 57 league wins, but the hosts failed to win the last two times at home against this opponent. Göteborg must win if they don’t want to lose sight of the leaders so early in the season. IFK Goteborg has played 4 Swedish Allsvenska matches this season on Ullevi. On home ground IFK Goteborg has won 4, drawn 0 and lost 0 matches. This ranks the Kamraterna (The Comrades) 4th in home team performance in the Swedish Allsvenska.
Malmö FF Preview - Managed to establish themselves in the group of contenders that will try to Challenge the souvereign leadership of Elfsborg. The Blues are third in the table with 14 points, seven points behind the leader. Malmö has great difficulties far from home – one success, one draw and two defeats, with 12 goals conceded in four games. No other team in the top flight has conceded more goals in its visits. Malmö FF hasn’t won away since two games. Malmo FF has played 4 Swedish Allsvenska matches this season away from home. On away ground Malmo FF has won 0, drawn 0 and lost 4 matches. This ranks Di blaae (The Blues) 16th in away team performance in the Swedish Allsvenska.
Form - IFK Goteborg LWWWD, Malmo FF WWDLW
Stat Attack –
IFK Goteborg’s performance is greatest when looking at opponents in the top 6 with an average of 3 points per game.
IFK Goteborg has managed to collect an average of 0.75 points in 4 matches this season. Concerning matches played at home against the top 6 this season IFK Goteborg has collected 3 points on average in 1 match.
Malmo FF’s performance is greatest when looking at opponents in the top 6 with an average of 0 points per game.
Malmo FF has managed to collect an average of 2 points in 3 matches this season. When looking at matches played away against the mid 4 this season Malmo FF has collected 0 points on average in 1 match.
Posted 15 May 2012 - 05:22 AM
Southend Preview: Despite finishing fourth in League Two, three places above Crew, Southend look to be the second beset side in this contest. Crewe took advantage of the first leg of the semi final at home, by coming away with a 1-0 win, which means that Southend have to respond with more on their home soil. Southend are the more experienced side of the two here, but it was the youthful drive of Crewe which won the day. Southend ran off four straight home wins to round out the season with, and ended up with a W12 D6 L5 home record for the season. They will be a bit wounded yet hopeful of turning around the semi final, and of putting in a much improved performance back on home turf, where they beat Crewe 1-0 in League Two on February 18th. What also should be working in their favour back at Roots Hall, is the fact that the Shrimpers finished the regular season as top scorers. They amassed 77 at an average of 1.67 goals per game over the course of the season, and the 1-0 defeat against Crewe in the first leg, was the first loss and the first goal conceded in six matches. Six out of Southend’s last seven in League Two came with a clean sheet.
Crewe Preview: The Railwaymen put in a very good performance at home to take an advantage in the race for a place in League One. The Cheshire outfit, managed by Steve Davis are a very attack minded side. That is the ethos of their game, and the boss himself has added that attacking is the only way they know. So the suggestions are there that even with a one goal lead, we are still going to be treated to some good forward play from there. Being too attack minded is usually a recipe for disaster, especially away from home, and Crewe don’t have the defence that Southend have. However, their charge for a play-off place came on the back of a sixteen match unbeaten streak to end the season with. Ironically, the last side to beat them was Southend back in February. That was one of two defeats during the regular season by Southend, so Crewe may be due a little payback at a crucial time. A long unbeaten streak is something not to be ignored when weighing up your betting options. Away from home, Crewe are unbeaten in their last seven, and they hold a W9 D6 L8 record.
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