Author Archive

Clark V Carroll The Key Battle In Our Accumulator

ccInternational matches took centre stage on Wednesday night and some notable results were recorded. Both Ireland and England may have registered wins but the two teams will draw very different conclusions from the results. Whereas the two goal win against Poland left Giovanni Trapattoni with a deepening conundrum about his starting eleven for the remainder of the World Cup Qualifiers, the English media would have you believe that Roy Hodgson has little on his managerial agenda other than to sit back, relax and bide his time away until his team are crowned champions in Brazil in 18 months time. These matches could also have implications for our pockets, and regarding our 14/1 accumulator, it is important to be wary of players who could be affected by fatigue or minor niggles picked up during the course of these matches. Continue reading

Away Teams To Bag Us A Treble This Weekend

berbaOur last treble was a single goal away from landing our 12/1 winnings, so we’ll be aiming to go one better with our 14/1 accumulator this weekend. There isn’t a lot of value available on home team prices on either Saturday or Sunday, so we’re going to avert our attention to the travelling sides. Continue reading

Chelsea To Overcome Home Blues Against Gunners

FELLAINIFor all the exciting build up to last weekend’s fixtures, many of the matches turned out to be dull spectacles with disappointingly unsurprising results. In the most anticipated matches, United looked comfortable for most of the match when dispatching Liverpool, while City were easy victors against Arsenal after Laurent Koscielny had been sent off early in the game. So looking at the table going into this weekend, the two Manchester clubs have distanced themselves further from the also-rans, with Chelsea hanging onto their coattails six points adrift of second place and a depressing thirteen points off top spot. So on Sunday, for the good of the league, let’s hope that Tottenham can claim three points against Man United and thus complete the double over them, having beaten them already at Old Trafford earlier this season.

For the good of our pockets however, we’re going to have a look at a 12/1 treble, kicking off at the DW Stadium where Wigan host a rejuvenated Sunderland side, who have been quite good this season in beating the teams around them at the lower end of the table. Since December, they have recorded important wins against West Ham, Fulham, Reading and Southampton, consequently improving their league position steadily. Both sides have only 4 days to recover from their Tuesday night FA Cup replays, but whereas a weakened Wigan side overcame Bournemouth, Sunderland had an altogether different experience as their full strength team succumbed 2-0 at home to Championship side Bolton. However a major boost for the Black Cats during this game was the substitute appearance of Lee Cattermole and he should return to the team against Wigan at the weekend and he should bolster their defensive play even further. Contrarily, centre-back Ivan Ramis has suffered a knee-ligament injury and is out for the rest of the season for Wigan. Sunderland, erratic as they may be, have been strong in recent games against bottom-half teams, and I will be backing them at 5/2 to win.

Chelsea are another team who had to play during the week, registering a miserable draw against Southampton on Wednesday evening. They face another tough test on Sunday when they welcome Arsenal to Stamford Bridge. The Blues’ away form has been outstanding of late, culminating last week with a 4-0 thumping of home rulers Stoke City. Their home form has been less consistent. Having knocked eight past Aston Villa, their next home game proved a goalless outing for the Blues and they fell victim to a Shaun Wright-Phillips goal and dropping two points against Southampton is hardly ideal. The shrewd purchasing of Demba Ba should reduce the chances of more fruitless endeavours and he will prove a handful for the weakened Arsenal defence if he once again starts ahead of Fernando Torres. Along with Koscielny, who is absent through suspension, Mikel Arteta will be sorely missed by the Gunners for this game as he is injured. Abou Diaby made a welcome return to the team and he will have his work cut out in his defensive-midfield position if he is to hinder the influence of Juan Mata, Eden Hazard and the evergreen Frank Lampard. Arsenal’s performances against stronger opposition is notoriously bad, they haven’t picked up a single point from their meetings with the top three teams this season, so I’m sticking with Chelsea at 5/6 to pick up the three points.

Our three bets this weekend are all spread out, so far one from Saturday, one from Sunday and to round it up, we’re looking at the Monday night game when Southampton take on Everton at St. Mary’s. The home side are unbeaten in their last five matches, recording notable draws against Fulham, Stoke, Arsenal and Chelsea and beating Aston Villa but I think this good run will come to an end when the Toffees come to town. The away side were very unlucky not to beat Swansea at the weekend, Marouane Fellaini and Nikica Jelavic looking particularly dangerous but just failing to score. With Kevin Mirallas on the brink of return after a long spell out with injury, the situation for David Moyes’ side is only looking rosy. If the manager can hold on to his big Belgian afro-man during the January transfer window, Everton should be playing European football next season and they can continue on this prosperous road on Monday night with victory over Southampton. They are priced at even money to do so.

Super Sunday Should See United Pull Clear As City Slip Up

Robin van Persie of Manchester United celebrates scoring the opening goal of the gameTwo huge games on Sunday see four of the biggest names in the Premier League come up against each other. Liverpool travel to Old Trafford to play the table toppers at 1.30 and at 4pm Arsenal host Man City. Man United should come out on top of the earlier tie, the match at the Emirates is harder to call. Yaya Toure’s departure to the African Cup of Nations is going to leave a massive hole in the City team over the next few fixtures, and Arsenal can prosper from this. However, Arsenal’s defensive frailties should be exposed by Man City’s attacking threats. The bookies are offering shortened odds on the draw for this match, and I can’t help but agree that both sides will earn a solitary point.

We’re going to invest our accumulator interest in the Saturday fixtures however, starting at the Madejski Stadium. Fulham stuffed West Brom and so too our bet in the previous round of Premiership matches, and I don’t think the Baggies’ away tie against Reading will be a fruitful endeavour either. They come into this game on the back of three games without a win and are seriously depleted; Youssouf Mulumbu and Claudio Yacob are unavailable and the sad news that Zoltan Gera will miss the rest of the season will resonate like a death bell for Albion. Reading on the other hand are showing signs that they have shored up their defence. Narrowly beaten by a late Gareth Barry header against City, their next two home games saw them preventing both Swansea and West Ham from scoring. If they can continue this sort of defensive performance on Saturday, I think that 9/4 are generous odds for the home side to earn a draw.

Next off to Carrow Road, where two teams on a dismal run of form come up against each other. Both teams have lost their last three Premier League games but there can be no doubt which side are cowering in the darker realms of depression. Languishing two points above the drop zone, injury ravaged, knocked out of the FA Cup by Brighton for the second year running and having just lost their one beacon of hope light to Chelsea, Newcastle’s season just seems to relentlessly continue to go from bad to worse. The one lonesome positive of the winter is the signing of French right-back Mathieu Debuchy, but I can’t see him dragging his new teammates to victory on Saturday. Chris Hughton will be out to get one over on his former club who senselessly sacked him months after he had inspired the Magpies to promotion back to top flight football. His Canaries should overcome their opposition whose hopes now rely on Papiss Cisse, who may prosper from his fellow countryman’s departure. Norwich are available at 6/5 to win.

The final leg of our accumulator finds us focusing on the match between Sunderland and West Ham, two teams who are looking somewhat busy during the current transfer window. The Hammers have welcomed back one of their many long lost sons in the figure of Joe Cole and he made an instant impact in his homecoming match, creator of both goals in a 2-1 victory over Norwich. West Ham will be heartened by their 2-2 draw with Man United in the FA Cup, whereas Sunderland’s identical result with Bolton should have the opposite effect. The home side are lacking in defense but still pose a threat up front with the exciting Stephane Sessegnon and Steven Fletcher always dangerous. I think this one will end up in a draw; it’s available at 9/4 and means that this week’s accumulator packs odds of about 22/1.

Away Teams to Perform This Weekend

Gareth Bale Aston Villa v Tottenham HotspurI allowed myself to be convinced by someone (who shall remain nameless but is my only brother) that Liverpool would win against Stoke on Stephen’s Day. I assure you I will not be listening to his dilettantish advice again and to make up for this pathetic blip, I have picked out some value bets and moulded them together to form another beautiful big odds accumulator.

At this stage, everybody is getting sick of the Benitez’s boo boys at Stamford Bridge. Obviously Roberto di Matteo was harshly treated but is it Rafa’s fault that the club is being run by a megalomaniac? I for one am glad that he has reformed the Chelsea side, David Luiz’s move away from the back four can only be positive and his footballing ability is slowly being nurtured in a defensive midfield role. He was quite impressive in his suffocation of Wes Hoolahan against Norwich and I think he could have a similar effect on the lively Steven Pienaar this weekend when his side face Everton. Strong at the back and equally impressive up front recently, Chelsea should record an away victory and are priced at 6/4 to do so.

Tottenham looked sensational on the break against Aston Villa on Wednesday with Gareth Bale in especially good form. They face Sunderland at the Stadium of Light in the early game on Saturday and hopefully they will kick off our accumulator, we’re going to back them at evens to come out on top.  The home side have been on some sort of a road to recovery with 3 wins in their last 4 outings, having beaten QPR, Southampton and remarkably Man City. However, Tottenham have had tasted success on the road many times this season and I fancy them to overrun their hosts and they are favourably priced to do so.

To complete the accumulator I’ve picked out Southampton to pull off a draw against Stoke at the Britannia. The home side, who have not lost on their own patch yet this season, will be weakened without their suspended captain Ryan Shawcross and right-back Geoff Cameron. Their skipper has been indispensable to the team this season, essential in holding their water-tight defence together with Robert Huth. He will be sorely missed as Stoke come up against Southampton’s danger man Rickie Lambert. I fancy the away side to earn a welcome point against draw-specialists Stoke, whose defensive absentees should not be underestimated. The draw is available at 5/2 and cranks up the overall odds of our big odds Accumulator to 16/1.

Trusting Terrible Sunderland to Share the Spoils

KJOnce again, Stoke shattered our big odds accumulator last weekend and are fast becoming our bogey team. I never thought the image of Kenwyne Jones pounding towards an empty goal would ever be a beautiful sight but that’s just what it was last Saturday, his side level with Everton at the time. Less beautiful was the subsequent image of him inexplicably putting the ball wide of the goal with his thigh and with it, our chances of winning big money. With the Manchester City and West Brom fixtures going our way,  we were left to curse this missed opportunity. Gutted as we may have been, onward we must venture and courageously reach out to grab a handful of this 16/1 shot that looks pretty tasty.
I am not of the popular opinion that Arsenal are in crisis at the minute and was happy to see Santi Cazorla destroying a hapless Reading on Monday evening. Despite the negative press they have received over the past few weeks, the Gunners climbed to fifth, have been drawn against Bayern Munich in the last 16 in the Champions League and on Saturday, they have a favorable tie against  Wigan Athletic at the DW Stadium. The home side had the creative James McCarthy controversially injured in their game against Norwich City and he, along with Adrian Lopez, will miss this game. I really fancy Arsenal to breeze past Wigan and the handicap betting will get my attention for separate bets but for the purpose of our accumulator, we are going to back them to win at 8/11.
Marouane Fellaini’s brainless behaviour during the Stoke game has resulted in a quite mild punishment, coming in the form of a three-match-ban. The Belgian has been inspirational  this season and even though he has been below par these past couple of weeks, he will nevertheless be missed by Everton who travel to an erratic West Ham. Both sides are missing key players for this fixture but I figure that the Hammers could come out on top. Everton will have little to offer in the line of creativity and if West Ham can keep Nikica Jelavic and Leon Osman quiet, they should be able to claim 3 points for the first time since they beat Chelsea three weeks ago. They are 2/1 to win.
Sensible enough work so far. Brace yourself though, maybe even stick on the kettle and have a relaxing cup of tea before you read the next sentence. We’re going to take a gamble and back highly ineffectual Sunderland to earn a point away to Southampton. The Saints will be without their captain Adam Lallana and Sunderland will also be without one of their key players as well, as Steven Fletcher continues his absence from the side. Both players’ nonavailability should not be underestimated and without them on the pitch, chances could be hard to come by.  Southampton have been strong at home  recently in beating the teams around them in the table. QPR and Newcastle have been impressively beaten at St. Mary’s, but I think that Sunderland can struggle on and manage a point here. The draw is available at 5/2.

Big Odds Gamble Will Pay For The Turkey

adamA highly entertaining Manchester derby did nothing to soften the blow of the failure of last week’s accumulator, and my, oh my, was it a spectacular failure.  Nevertheless we’re going to keep on keeping on and focus on the task ahead which is finding another classic bet small win big accumulator. As luck would have it, I have the perfect remedy for your empty pockets with a very generous 16/1 on offer for a surprisingly rational gamble.

Let’s face it, Newcastle are pants at the minute and cannot buy a break as once again their talisman Hatem Ben Arfa seems to have re-injured himself after returning from a knock for the Fulham game on Monday. He scored Newcastle’s only goal that night but did not complete the match and is once again a major doubt for Saturday when they welcome Man City to the North-East. The Manchester club could be lacking defensively for this tie, captain Vincent Kompany is a doubt and Gareth Barry is suspended, however the latter’s absence might be a bonus as he is not in the best form. Demba Ba might prosper if Kompany turns out to be unavailable but even if this is the case I feel City are a steal at 4/6.

Stoke may be the most dismal team to watch in the Premiership but we’re going to take a gamble and back them to beat Everton at 2/1 in the Brittania Stadium. The home side are obviously solid at the back and they should be able to contain the Toffee’s dangerous attacking threat of Nikica Jelavic and Marouane Fellaini. Despite Michael Owen’s efforts he will not make his long awaited return this weekend, but Peter Crouch should be named in the starting eleven for the first time since he lost some teeth after a collision with Newcastle defender Fabricio Coloccini three weekends ago. They also welcome back Charlie Adam to the team and with their team strengthened, I think they should have enough to cause an upset and to overturn highflying Everton.

We’re completing the three-legged accumulator by tipping a draw between West Brom and West Ham. The last three meetings of these two teams have ended as draws and I feel that Sunday’s match will churn out the same result. Key man Mohamed Diame has joined the queue of long-term injuries for the Hammers and with neither team in terribly good form of late, I feel that the draw is a decent bet at 12/5.

Beat the Budget Blues With Our Premier League Bets

harryHopefully you took my advice last week and backed Swansea to win and for there to be over 2.5 goals in the Spurs match. If not, you can hang your head in shame and grovel for my mercy. Luckily for you of little faith, I am a merciful emperor and am going to let you live to fight another day, a day which offers us many more opportunities to earn tax free money that the pesky budget can’t touch.

Wigan have been on a poor run of form lately but I still think they are overpriced at 13/10 to beat QPR, who are still deservedly grounded in the drop zone despite the arrival of ‘arry. Wigan may have lost 3-0 to Newcastle on Monday night, but had Maynor Figueroa not been sent off early on in the game I think the Latics could prolonged Newcastle’s woes. They were impressive in the second half after Roberto Martinez got them into the dressing room and settled them down and I think the Spaniard, despite having several defenders unavailable, can unlock QPR tactically at the weekend to get his team back on track.

Norwich have won our trust over the last few weeks but this is no place for emotional attachment. Travelling to Swansea on Saturday, they should be defeated for the first time in seven matches. They have proven tricky opponents to get past but I believe that Michael Laudrup’s troops have enough attacking power to undo the Canaries. They will be boosted by the news that their widely acclaimed keeper Michel Vorm has resumed training while Norwich could still be without their No. 1 choice John Ruddy. Although Laudrup has other injury concerns, Swansea should pull through at odds of 5/6.

The third leg of our accumulator is the most adventurous of the three. I fancy Fulham and Newcastle to draw on Monday night. Hatem Ben Arfa could make a welcome return to the away side’s team and Brede Hangeland returns to firm up the Fulham defence. Neither team have inspired any confidence in them in recent matches. This might be convenient ignorance on my part of Newcastle’s victory mentioned above but I’ve explained how the result could have easily been different. The draw is available at 5/2 and I think this is a welcome final addition to our accumulator.

Putting those three bets together will give you odds about 14/1 and if you want to make even more enchanting, we could look at a Carroll-less West Ham to beat a Suarez-less Liverpool at a price of 6/5 with the draw-no-bet option. Also, in what should be a cracking game, I fancy Everton to beat Tottenham in a clash that is enthralling both on the pitch and on the sideline where the man’s man David Moyes comes up against the new-aged metrosexual AVB. On this occasion, the wise old scrapping Scot should crush the slick and smooth modern man. The Toffees are 11/10 to overcome a Spurs side who are without Gareth Bale and could feel fatigued after their Thursday night exploits.

Personally, I’m going to hedge my bets and safely stick to the first three bets but if you want to put your money where my mouth is then these 5 bets combine to give odds of over 66/1. That’ll see you earn a lot of tax free dosh that you can spend on tax, tax and more tax.

Four Games That Could Earn You Big Bucks

Fernando TorresThis weekend we’re going to play by the rules. We’re going to take our beatings and learn from them as the 33/1 and 50/1 bets we previously unsuccessfully attempted are not going to be emulated. We dared to dream of getting rich quick but paid the price and so it is with a heavy heart that we desert the bet of the day which is Swansea to beat Arsenal at 4/1 (draw no bet), or 6/1 for those brave enough to back Michu, Hernandez and co. to stuff the gunners at the Emirates. Not us however, nor are we brave enough to include Swansea in our moderately big bucks accumulator this weekend. Instead we’re going to point our prayers to backing a paltry 18/1 accumulator which, for the most part, comprises of sure things.

We’re starting at the Hawthorns where West Brom face Stoke. The Baggies really should be utterly disappointed with their display on Wednesday and I fancy them to bounce back from this dismal performance. Fan favourite Shane Long is due to return to the starting eleven to bolster their attack against a team who are on the back of two successive home wins, but away form would suggest that Stoke will be on the wrong side of the result this time. West Brom are available at evens to beat the Potters who could be without their main man Peter Crouch.

Onwards and predictably upwards towards the top of the table and we’re going to back both Man City and Chelsea to win their games this weekend. There are quiet whispers of City developing their 14 game unbeaten start into an unbeaten season. Despite the fact that they haven’t been setting the world on fire, they are now looking defensively solid now and have more than enough names up front to bag them a goal or two to secure the three points against Everton, who as it turns out, were the last team to beat them at home. We’re going to conveniently ignore this stat though and back them at 1/2 to reverse that result.

Rafa Benitez is still looking for his first goal as Chelsea manager and, while he has also yet to concede a goal, the Spaniard will be hoping that his infamous number 9 can do something, anything to inspire his fellow team mates to their first win since beating Tottenham in October. I think they should be able to pull it off away to West Ham in the 12.45 kick off on Saturday. Juan Mata should start after being left on the bench against Fulham, and another big plus for the Blues is that the blunder-prone David Luiz will not be available for selection – that’s encouragement enough to back Chelsea at 5/6 to win.

The final leg of this accumulator for those of us who won’t be including the Swansea factor focuses our attention on Fulham’s home tie with Tottenham. We’re going to stick our money on a draw in a fixture which sees two sides who this season have been very effective going forward but not so much when defending.  Both sides had a good result during the weekend and even though Spurs did beat Liverpool 2-1, they were not all that convincing and I don’t feel that they will take all three points off Fulham. The draw is generally priced at 12/5.

Putting those 4 bets together still gives us decent accumulator odds of 18/1 – not the most ridiculous 18/1 bet you could have this weekend. Other bets that could be worth a gamble would be, as mentioned above, Swansea 4/1 to beat Arsenal (draw no bet) and over 2.5 goals in the Fulham match at 4/6.

That’s the Premiership accumulator for this weekend my fellow punters, maybe it’s not as adventurous as other weeks but will you really care when your 18/1 bet comes in and you’re finally able to afford that solid gold house? I think not.

Scott Collapses As Els Wins Open

Ernie Els has won the British open by one shot after Adam Scott incredibly collapsed during the last four holes on an incident packed final day. Scott started the day 4 shots ahead of his nearest challenger Graeme McDowell and appeared to be coasting towards the Claret Jug as he held on to the advantage going into the final six holes.

However, the Australian was to bogey every one of the last four holes as he allowed Els to clinch his fourth major championship. The South-African hit a two-under par 68 to claim his second Claret Jug, 10 years after he won his first.

Scott slipped to second place with a disappointing final day round of 75. His remarkable failure to hold his nerve at the four final holes meant that he finished three shots ahead of the next best competitors, Tiger Woods and once leader Brandt Snedeker. Playing alongside Scott was McDowell, but he too had a sub-standard finish to his Open as he also carded a 75 and finished in fifth place.

It had all looked so good for the overnight leader when he sunk a birdie putt on the fourteenth hole, but the 32-year-old Aussie bogeyed the next three holes whereas Els had finished his tournament much stronger with a birdie at the last.

Scott walked onto the 18th tee knowing that a par would force a four-hole play-off, and despite finding a fairway bunker with his drive, he was still in with a chance of finishing level on 7 under, level with Els. Indeed Scott got the chance to save par when he hit his third shot to within eight feet of the hole, but it was not to be for the Australian as he completed his rather spectacular disintegration with yet another bogey.