View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 18

Thursday, December 20 2018

 

It’s been hard work wading through the bullshit written and spoken about Jose Mourinho’s sacking this week. 

It turns out that not one journalist ever thought he was the right man for the job. Funny that. But opinion is mixed as to whether the blame lay at the feet of the players, the board, or Jose. 

Thankfully there is one voice we can rely on for clarity, insight and wisdom…

Robbie Savage cleared up the matter once and for all on TalkSport…

‘You can’t blame Jose for players kicking it out of play… or defenders making mistakes. But ultimately he has to take responsibility for their poor play.’

So there you have it. 

 

Goalkeeper

Total Pts

GW 17 Pts

Alisson (LIV)

83

2

Defenders

 

 

Alonso (CHE)

100

1

Robertson (LIV)

97

2

van Dijk (LIV)

82

2

Doherty (WOL)

80

6

Midfielders

 

 

Hazard (CHE)

116

13

Salah (LIV)

113

2

Sterling (MC)

112

6

Sane (MC)

92

10

Forwards

 

 

Aubameyang (ARS)

100

2

Wilson (BOU)

93

1

 

All I want for Christmas is a clean sheet…

You’d think with only 13pts scored by the entire back five from last week’s selection, there might be a change of personal. But no. Nothing. 

Results elsewhere meant Alisson got away with his howler and Robertson and van Dijk in front of him only needed to turn up to keep their place. Alonso managed just a single, but is the first defender to Top 100 for the season. He’s not the only Chelsea stopper on the scene these days though.

Luiz, Rudiger and Azpilicueta all make the second string back four now. But roving Wolves wingback Doherty was again the star performer. That’s four weeks on the spin he has delivered either a sheet, a goal or an assist. For the love of the baby Jesus, snap him up.    

Hazard lights the way once more…

One new face in the midfield – and a very pretty one too. Sane has challenged his opposite flanker Sterling on who is City’s most effective player in recent weeks. Another double-figure weekend tucks Leroy into our engine room for this week. 

Fraser misses out, but remains the best value pick of the season – so don’t do anything silly. Hazard is back on top of the pile after a tidy G & A performance at Brighton - his first of the campaign. And keep an eye on West Ham’s Anderson and Everton’s Richarlison who are steadily making progress in improving teams.

I DO wanna go to Chelsea…

A blank weekend for both out frontmen has allowed Harry Kane to close the gap. But if there is any substance to the stories of Chelsea sniffing around Bournemouth’s Wilson, his £6.9m could look even more bargainous than it does already. 

Don’t forget Aguero either. He’ll cost you, but City aren’t going to slow up in 2019 and he’ll be at the sharp end. Oh and hhhow about a big hhhh for Wolves’ Hhhhimenez. He’s much more classy than my cartoon racism and makes the Top Five hit men on merit.  

My Christmas list…

If you haven’t got, or can’t get, or don’t fancy any of the above – this lot are handy alternatives. 

GK: Kepa (CHE) – Chelsea are still my dark horses. More to come, I tells ya. 
DEF: Luiz (CHE) – Good price, good form, great hair.
MID: Fraser (BOU) – The fourth most popular midfielder for a reason. 
MID: Richarlison (EVE) – Third most popular, if you’re swayed by peer pressure.
FOR: Aguero (MC) – Nothing for a month, but will hit 2019 hard.   

I’ll be back in the Festive Perineum – y’know the bit between Christmas and New Year, look it up. 

But in the meantime, I wish you all a happy, healthy and safe holiday season and hope that you get the Lynx box set you actually want.

Matt Nesbitt

P.S. I’m a Java man.   

 


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 17

Thursday, December 13 2018

 

You have to respect the apology of Chelsea ‘fan’ Colin Wing, who was suspended by the club for abusing Raheem Sterling in last week’s match…

Wing: ‘I’m deeply ashamed by my own behaviour. I want to apologise unreservedly to Raheem and hope he can be a better man than I am by accepting it’.

But I would’ve respected Sterling more if he had responded thus…

Sterling: ‘No, I can’t. You fat cunt.’ 

Oh well…

Goalkeeper

Total Pts

GW 16 Pts

Alisson (LIV)

81

6

Defenders

 

 

Alonso (CHE)

99

6

Robertson (LIV)

95

11

van Dijk (LIV)

80

6

Doherty (WOL)

74

7

Midfielders

 

 

Salah (LIV)

111

21

Sterling (MC)

106

2

Hazard (CHE)

103

9

Fraser (BOU)

88

2

Forwards

 

 

Aubameyang (ARS)

98

5

Wilson (BOU)

92

0

 

One L, two S’s…

Get used to spelling of his name because they’ll be no shifting Liverpool’s stopper  Alisson from our No 1 spot this season. After stalking Ederson (MC) for a few weeks, he has now bolted a chunky 7pts clear. Not all his own work of course…

Double Ds…

Front left of Alisson, Scotland’s second best left-back Robertson is threatening to reel in the once seemingly unassailable Alonso (CHE). That wand-like left peg added a fourth assist of the season to a tenth clean sheet at Bournemouth. Alonso is still three ahead, but has only managed two in the last 12 – and no sheets in five.

Playing alongside van Dijk (LIV) doesn’t hurt, of course. The Dutch master makes his debut in the Team of the Week following his fourth clean sheet in five. And Virgil isn’t the only virgin in our back four. Wolves’ have found their teeth again in the last two weeks and rampart right wingback Doherty is giving 20.6% of FPL managers plenty to smile about. £5.1m people. Do the right thing.     

Threesy does it…

Mo Salah (LIV) is now moving through the gears and his 21pt hat-trick at Bournemouth has made him more valuable than Sterling (MC). Hazard joins the two of them in treble figures and it will takes something ridiculous for one of this three not to be the top FPL point scorer come the end of the season. Let’s not forget Fraser (BOU) though, who remains the best value. 

All four one…

Top Gun Aubameyang (ARS) is just an assist away from breaking the ton (or should that be ‘tonne’, seeing as it is metric. A hundred, anyway). And can strengthen his position this weekend with both Aguero (MC) and nearest challenger Wilson (BOU) carrying knocks. Harry Kane (TOT) is grinding his way to the top of the list, either scoring or assisting in his last five starts. Can’t see anyone breaking up this fab four either. Lacazette (ARS) and Jiminez (WOL) are potential, but unlikely Yoko Onos – with the latter the darker (and cheaper) horse.    

The Watch List: I got five on it

If you haven’t got, or can’t get, or don’t fancy any of the above – this lot are handy alternatives. 

GK: Kepa (CHE) – could give the increasingly flaky Ederson a run for his money.
DEF: Luiz (CHE) – Sideshow Bob is a bit of value at £5.6. Always got a goal in him.
DEF: Alexander-Arnold (LIV) – dipped out of the X1, but we haven’t seen the last of him. 
MID: Sane (MC) – could be a strong finisher, if you can stretch to £9.5m.   
MID: Richarlison (EVE) – has convinced 32.7% that he is better value at £2.4m cheaper.  

Let’s put on our classics and we’ll have a little dance shall we.

Matt Nesbitt


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 16

Friday, December 7 2018

 

Having been in the betting business for 20-odd years, I am well-versed in the sanctimonious posturing and double-speak within the industry. But when the government get involved they take it to another level…

The current hoopla about tackling ‘problem gambling’ has all parties making big claims. Deputy Labour leader Tom Watson talks of a ‘public health emergency’… Conservative vice chairman Chris Skidmore wants ‘tighter rules on advertising’…

The upshot?

A 1% kickback, er, sorry… levy about £140 million a year. And a ban on the phrase ‘Bet Now’. 

Fact. 

Check out Bet365’s professional geezer Ray Winstone’s sign-offs. ‘Bet naaah!’ has been replaced with ‘bet responsibly’. 

And that, brothers and sisters, is the deal. Already done and dusted.

Now then…

Goalkeeper

Total Pts

GW 15 Pts

Alisson (LIV)

75

3

Defenders

 

 

Alonso (CHE)

93

0

Robertson (LIV)

84

0

van Dijk (LIV)

74

5

Alexander-Arnold (LIV)

73

0

Midfielders

 

 

Sterling (MC)

104

0

Hazard (CHE)

94

5

Salah (LIV)

90

4

Fraser (BOU)

86

12

Forwards

 

 

Aubameyang (ARS)

93

2

Wilson (BOU)

92

12

 

All change please, all change

Alisson (LIV) has been steadily stalking Ederson (MC) for a few weeks with three sheets in his last four. And now finally gets his big, webbed gloves on the No 1 spot. He is emerging as arguably Jurgen Klopp’s most important signing. I say ‘arguably’ because the loudest protest in that particular debate is likely to come from van Dijk – our second debutant of the week.

He is flanked by full-backs Alexander-Arnold and Robertson – even though the latter didn’t even play midweek. Which neatly tells the story of Liverpool’s evolution this season. If they end up going the distance with City it will be down to their rear-guard as much as the fabled Fab Three.   

For Fraser’s sake, pick Ryan

Fraser (BOU) has clambered back into the midfield four – where he has been for much of the season. But he still only figures in 27.5% of FPL teams! C’mon now, people. I could understand if he was trading in the double-figure millions or had an off-putting tattoo on his lower leg. But I understand all of Ryan’s ink is very tasteful (he has a barbed-wire ring around his upper arm and Wylie Coyote on his hip). This boy is worth £6.3m of anyone’s (not even real) money.

Sterling (MC) looks the big money pick of the moment. Salah (LIV) hasn’t had his best spell of the season so far, but I’m starting to think that Hazard (CHE) – and maybe his team mates - might have.  

Callum Wilson said I’m in the X1

Sticking with Bournemouth, England’s newest cap Wilson has kicked on apace since making his International bow. Five goals in six matches – and a two-match of Aguero (MC) – has kept Callum ahead of a litany of more glamorous names. But just behind one of the most spectacularly named…

Aubameyang (ARS) carries a hefty tag - £11.3m is joint most expensive, alongside Aguero and behind only Kane (TOT) – but is delivering, alright. Glad he has sorted that hair out too.  

‘Arry will keep grinding away, or course. And Lacazette (ARS) is a cheaper alternative, but they five mentioned look like the pick unless Mitrovic (FUL) and Jimenez (WOL) do something exceptional in the second half of the season.

The Watch List: Best of the rest...

If you haven’t got, or can’t get, or don’t fancy any of the above – this lot are handy alternatives. 
GK: Ederson (MC) – Still the most popular in the FPL marketplace.  
DEF: Doherty (WOL) – A goal and an assist in his last two. Solid outside-big-six-bet.  
MID: Sane (MC) – Four goals and four assist in his last five. Back in business.   
FOR: Lacazette (ARS) – Can have an impact even from the bench.  

Play now. Sorry, play responsibly.

Matt Nesbitt


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 14

Friday, November 30 2018

 

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha Robbie Savage has his mum on his radio show ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha she’s predicting the scores ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha that’s not what you’d expect from someone’s mum HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA and she calls him ‘Poppet’ HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA no wonder he is a genius.

Or perhaps he’s just a waste of organs. Not sure.

Anyway…

Goalkeeper

Total Pts

GW 13 Pts

Ederson (MC)

68

6

Defenders

 

 

Alonso (CHE)

87

1

Robertson (LIV)

78

7

Alexander-Arnold (LIV)

65

7

Laporte (MC)

64

6

Midfielders

 

 

Sterling (MC)

95

16

Hazard (CHE)

83

1

Salah (LIV)

83

8

Mane (LIV)

77

9

Forwards

 

 

Aguero (MC)

82

2

Aubameyang (ARS)

75

8

 

Look North By North West in goal…

Scouse pair Alisson (LIV) and Pickford (EVE) are slowly reining in Manc Ederson (MC) in, but clean sheets are less likely in the Merseyside derby than in City at home to Bournemouth. So Mr Ed stays top of the (ugly) tree for another week. 

Check out The (Liver) Birds at the back…

Liverpool left back Robertson has been joined by his opposite flanker Alexander-Arnold, thanks to 25pts in the last two weeks. An assist and a goal topping up the two clean sheets. Much of the pair’s best work was done going forward last season, but Klopp’s slightly more pragmatic approach – plus the arrival of a proper centre back and goalkeeper, of course – has added clean sheets to their FPL appeal. 15 between them so far.

Alonso is still top stopper, despite just the 1pt at Tottenham last weekend. A visit from Fulham on Sunday should set the record straight.  Oh and City’s quiet man Laporte sneaks back in to make up the four. It’s all about sheets with this boy – 8 from 13 matches. Bournemouth at home says 9

Raheem’s 39 Steps to the top…

Sterling (MC) is now the FPL’s most valuable asset. His 39pts – count ‘em, 39... – in the last three weeks has taken him past Hazard (CHE) who’s form has fallen off a Stamford Bridge. Eden has totalled 9ts from the last five matches and is a doubt for the Fulham match.

So you’re better off turning your attention to the Liverpool pair of Mo and Mane, Salah and Sadio. Neither has quite hit the heights of last season yet, but offer a bigger goal threat than Fraser (BOU) and Sigurdsson (EVE), show just miss out. They will save you some FPL dollar though, trading at just £6.2m and £7.4m respectively.

Dial A for Aubameyang…*

A rare blank weekend from Aguero (MC) – only the fourth time Sergio has failed to register a goal or an assist this season. But he has credit in the bank looks the stand out pic according to the fixtures. 

The silver-topped one is joined for the first time by Arsenal’s top gun Aubameyang. His 8 goals so far is solid, but when you look where he has scored them – it looks like he might be a ‘flat-tracker’. Cardiff, Everton, Fulham, Leicester, Palace and Bournemouth… Hmm.

Tottenham will be a tougher nut to crack, but with his mate Lacazette a groin-injury doubt at least he will start at the sharp end.

*As usual, there is a very sophisticated literary thread that runs through this week’s post. However, some of the links are more tenuous (or just plain shit) than others. This is one of them. But the next one is better…

Watch list: Strangers On a Bench**

*See!

If you haven’t got, or can’t get, or don’t fancy any of the above – this lot are handy alternatives. 

GK: Alisson (LIV) – has a tidy run of matches up to Christmas. And.GK: Pickford (EVE) – will save you £0.7m, plus looks value in the next two (at home to WAT & NEW).  
DEF: Walker (MC) – is on the verge. Not enough assists, but plenty of sheets.
MID: Sane (MC) – 34pts in the last three weeks after a slow start.  
FOR: Mitrovic (FUL) – might benefit from the Ranieri bounce. 

Quack quack oops.

Matt Nesbitt


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 13

Thursday, November 22 2018

 

A bad week for Ryan Giggs. 

His Wales team lost their second game in a row and the fifth of his nine-match reign. He even criticised his own players after the 0-1 humbling by Albania.

Ideal candidate to take over at Man United then…

Another Premier League legend was in the news this week. Nicklas Bendtner has been given a 50-day jail sentence for chinning a taxi driver. 

But ‘jail’ in Denmark actually means you wear a tag around your ankle and have to stay at home while two blond-haired blokes with beards stare at your house from across the road in their Volvo. 

They’re way ahead out there.

And here’s a fact for you… Bentner was at Arsenal for nine years! There were a few loans in there, but that’s longer than Thierry Henry…!

You can use that one. You’re welcome.
 

Goalkeeper

Total Pts

GW 12  Pts

Ederson (MC)

62

2

Defenders

 

 

Alonso (CHE)

86

8

Robertson (LIV)

71

12

Trippier (TOT)

59

1

Rudiger (CHE)

58

5

Midfielders

 

 

Hazard (CHE)

82

3

Sterling (MC)

79

2

Salah (LIV)

75

8

Fraser (BOU)

70

5

Forwards

 

 

Aguero (MC)

80

7

Wilson (BOU)

72

2

 

Rudy Blue

Ooh, a new face in the team! Chelsea’s goal-less draw with Everton didn’t do them a lot of good, with City and Liverpool both winning. But it did mean that big Antonio Rudiger could elbow his way into our Team of the Season. 

Not that a lot of the FPL stratosphere are convinced – just 4.9% are on board. For balance, that’s less than have Leicester’s Pereira in their side and the same as Bournemouth’s Ake. At just £6m, Rudy is a snip people. 

Egor (MC) keeps the No.1 spot despite staining his sheet with kamikaze decisions two weeks running. Liverpool’s Alisson is looming in the rear-view with three clean sheets in his last five.

Top Jocks

In front and to the left, Andy Robertson has had a good couple of weeks. First he takes our Player of the Week award with a dirty dozen points, then helps Scotland top the ‘group of death’ in the Nations League. Aw, c’mon now… it's bantz. You can only beat the pub team in front of you.

The story in midfield is also shaping up to be the story of the Premier League. Scottish playmaker Ryan Fraser - and his team-mates – can no longer be considered to be punching. Bournemouth players are only out-numbered by City and Chelsea now.

Over a quarter of you have picked him ahead of the likes of Moura, Martial and the Silvas. And at £6.2m he is looking a must buy this Black Friday weekend. 

Salah, Sterling and Hazard are probably untouchable in the Top Three positions – although all now trail Chelsea full-back Alonso, if you’re looking for a way to max out your Man City and Chelsea player quotas.

Callum bloody Wilson

Our forwards might take some catching now too. Callum Wilson (BOU) now makes the X1 for over a third of players – and factoring in the slight injury doubts over Arsenal’s front two, plus the debut goal swagger that Callum will bring back from International duty. At £6.8m, Wilson remains the man this weekend.

Sergio (MC), of course, is Sergio. And even if he doesn’t score these days, he’ll set one up – six goals, eight assists so far. If you can, do so.

Watch list: Players on the fringe

If you haven’t got, or can’t get, or don’t fancy any of the above – this lot are handy alternatives. 

GK: Pickford (EV) – Real chance of a second sheet on the bounce v Cardiff.
DEF: Laporte (MC) – Looks a fixture in City’s back line now. That’s a good place to be.
MID: Mane (LIV) – Not the player he was last season, but can’t ignore the numbers. 
FOR: Kane (TOT) – The best goal scorer in the worlds according to Gareth. Joint fourth best in the PL according to the numbers.

Keep it chopped out, yeah?

Matt Nesbitt


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 12

Friday, November 9 2018

 

Is it just me, or does anyone else hope that Rooney gets sent off for a two-footed stamp during his 15-minute cameo for England. Then calls the FA fxxxxxg divvies and flicks the Vs to the fans as he leaves the field…?

And is photographed kissing a middle-aged prostitute goodbye in her doorway the following morning. Not a classy one either, one who lives in a terraced house behind a railway station. 

Right. It is just me then.

To business…

Goalkeeper

Total Pts

GW 11 Total

Ederson (MC)

60

3

Defenders

 

 

Alonso (CHE)

78

6

Robertson (LIV)

59

2

Trippier (TOT)

58

4

Laporte (MC)

52

2

Midfielders

 

 

Hazard (CHE)

79

2

Sterling (MC)

77

21

Salah (LIV)

67

4

Mane (LIV)

65

2

Forwards

 

 

Aguero (MC)

73

13

Wilson (BOU)

70

7

 

Mirror, mirror on the wall…

Ederson (MC) is going to be as difficult to shift from the No 1 as the JFK assassination tattoo from his neck (If you look closely you can see an unmistakable puff of smoke from behind the picket fence, just behind his ear). City even conceded last weekend – their first in six matches. But nearest rival Alisson is a couple of clean sheets adrift.

Looky looky, same same…

No change in the back-four either – unless you count the switching of Laporte (MC) and Trippier (TOT) to third and fourth. In which case, BIG change in the back four! Tripper’s assist helped him leapfrog Laporte into third spot, just a point behind the FPL’s second best defender (and, curiously, Scotland’s second bets left back) Robertson (LIV). Alonso (CHE) has rediscovered his taste for assists with two in two weeks, so remains miles ahead.

Buy buy buy…

The value of Sterling (MC) is on the rise after an underwear-staining 21pts v Southampton. He’s now so good, he’s taken to bringing himself down in the penalty area and has been pulling his own shirt at set-pieces in training this week. Hazard (CHE) only played 25 minutes but notched an assist to stay out front. Mo and Mane (LIV) did just enough to stay involved but keep the faith – it’s Fulham at the weekend. 

If the cap fits…

What a week for Wilson (BOU). Another goal (against Man United) has kept him at the sharp end of our Dream Team – and got him an England call up. Not sure which he will be more pleased about. At least we won’t hook him for the last 15 minutes so Wayne Rooney can fulfil whatever promotional deal those bandits at the FA have cooked up.

Aguero (MC) is back in the frame too, edging out twin Gunners Lacazette and Aubameyang (thank god. I’m sick to death of typing it. It never looks right). Oh crap, he’s going to make the bench isn’t he. Unless…

Watch list: Players on the fringe

If you haven’t got, or can’t get, or don’t fancy any of the above – this lot are handy alternatives. 

GK: Alisson (LIV) – Fulham and Watford next. Clean sheet potential.
DEF: Mendy (MC) – Looks like Benji is being spared for PL action. Take note.  
MID: Richarlison (EV) – Has recovered his early season samba beat.
MID: Martial (MU) – Five goals in four for the Le Sulk.  
FOR: Rooney (DC) – Er, just to say thanks for what he has given. Or something.

Later skaterz,

Matt Nesbitt


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 11

Saturday, November 3 2018

 

Two new faces this week. But sadly for the fully-sighted, Ederson's is still on view in goal.

Jeez, it's Hallowe'en every weekend in that lad's house. But have you seen his missus...?!

Tell me she would be with him if he still lived under a bridge in Rio, eating scraps from hospital bins.

Don't get me started.

To more pleasant business...

Goalkeeper

Total 

GW 10 

Ederson (MC)

57pts

8pts

Defenders

 

 

Alonso (CHE)

72pts

11pts

Robertson (LIV)

57pts

0pts

Laporte (MC)

54pts

6pts

Trippier (TOT)

54pts

2pts

Midfielders

 

 

Hazard (CHE)

75pts

0pts

Salah (LIV)

63pts

15pts

Mane (LIV)

63pts

15pts

Fraser (BOU)

62pts

11pts

Forwards

 

 

Aubameyang (ARS)

63pts

8pts

Wilson (BOU)

63pts

13pts

 

Nice stats, shame about the face…

A sixth clean sheet on the spin keeps pretty boy Ederson the ace face in goal. Alisson (LIV) is a full 10pts adrift and only £0.1m cheaper. Pickford (EV), Ryan (BHA) and Patricio (WOL) are only a couple of points behind him and will give you up to £1m to spend elsewhere. But all favour home matches.

Any Laporte in a storm…

City’s miserly run has also opened the door for Laporte* to make his bow in the Team of the Week. That’s seven sheets from ten, folks. Wolves’ wing-back Doherty pays the price for Wolves’ PL honeymoon coming to an end. But with the Top Five dominating the top eight slots now, he is a nice price alternative (£4.9) and carries a threat at the other end. 

(* This isn’t just thrown together y’know…)

Ryan mighty…

Hazard took the week off and still has headroom. Sadio Salah and Mo Mane (that’s tight, isn’t it…?) are duking it out for next best. Mane will save you £3.2m but only offers goals (six), whereas Salah offers assists (four) and is still moving through the gears (five goals so far). But Fraser’s double at Fulham makes him the assist king (with five) and a snip at £6.1m. Almost a quarter of players (23.6%) have snapped him up.

Aubameyang thank you ma’am…

A fifth strike in his last three has taken Arsenal’s (latest) flying No. 14 to the top of the tree. Take up is split between him and his mate Lacazette (15.1% v 14.1%) but PEA is the pick for me, based on bench impact.  

Callum Wilson’s 13pts weekend was unlucky for Fulham. The Bournemouth frontman seems to miss as many as he scores, but he has squeezed some big (and much more exotically priced) superdooper stars out of the X1 – Aguero and Kane among them. So, fair dos. 

However, if I were a betting man and had a farm – it would go on Aguero to score more v Southampton than Wilson will against Man United.  

Which brings me to the…

Watch list: Players on the fringe

If you haven’t got, or can’t get, or don’t fancy any of the above – this lot are handy alternatives. 

GK: Pickford (EVE) – a team on the up, nice price and at home to Brighton. 
DEF: Mendy (MC) – has been bubbling under for a while and has sheet and assist potential v Southampton.  
MID: Sterling (MC) – likewise, they’ll be plenty of gaols to share at the Etihad on Sunday.  
FOR: Aguero (MC) -  and Sergio might fancy one of three. 

Have funtasy. 

Matt Nesbitt


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 10

Saturday, October 27 2018

 

Short and sharp this week, real life has come a-knocking – so Fantasy business will have to be brief.
     
Here are the finest movers and shakers of the season so far…

Goalkeeper                          Pts        GW 9 

Ederson (MC)                      49pts         6pts

Defenders

Marcos Alonso (CHE)          61pts         1pts
Andrew Robertson (LIV)      57pts         8pts
Kieran Tripper (TOT)           52pts         6pts
Matt Doherty (WOL)            50pts         1pt

Midfielders

Eden Hazard (CHE)            75pts        1pt
Ryan Fraser (BOU)             51pts        3pts
Mo Salah (LIV)                    50pts        8pts
Raheem Sterling (MC)        50pts        0pts

Forwards

Sergio Aguero (MC)            52pts        9pts
Aubameyang (AFC)            55pts        12pts 

Alright at the back…?

No change in nets. A fifth clean sheet on the spin keeps the familiar – if slightly troubling to look at – face of Ederson (MC) in the No 1 number spot. The much more handsome Alisson (LIV) is keeping the pressure on though, like his Liverpool team mates.  

Same same at the back too. Just a 1pt showing from Doherty and Alonso didn’t affect their ranking, but Tippier’s 8pts (TOT) allowed him to leapfrog Robertson (LIV) who only managed the 6pts. 
Man City’s Laporte continues to hover and his let-hand man Mendy refuses to go away. 

Mo moves in…

Mo Salah edges out his Liverpool mucker Sadio Mane to join last week’s top trio. Hazard (CHE) and Sterling (MC) only mustered 1pt between them, but still stay miles out front and hanging on in there, respectively. 

Ryan Fraser (BOU) only bothered to rack up 3pts too. But stays the bargain of the season thus far. 

Double-barrel strike from the Gunners…

Sergio (MC) remains the man up top, with a standard nine pointer against Burnley. But he is joined in the Top Three by Arsenal’s twin-gunners Aubameyang and Lacazette.  They’ve notched eight between them in the last four matches and look set to stay in and around our Team of the Week for a bit. 

With big hitters Kane (TOT) and Lukaku (MU) looking a little leggy and two-left footy of late, Callum Wilson (BOU) and relegation threatened mad Alex Mitrovic (FUL) have been carrying the fight. And that can’t be right.

On the Watch list…

In summary, these are the bad boys the BaDMan recommends should be on your radar:

GK: Patricio (WOL) and Alisson (LIV) are your men.
DEF: Laporte (MC) is a cheaper option than Walker and Mendy.
MID: Maddison (LEI), Mane (LIV) and Sigurdsson (EVE) are worth a look. 
FOR: Lacazette (ARS) is almost stride for stride with his partner in crime. 

Play nice.
   
Matt Nesbitt


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 9

Friday, October 19 2018

 

We’re back to Premier League business this weekend. 

Although I did enjoy the International break – especially the modest and strictly impartial coverage of England (or The Empiric Ruler of the Seas, as I prefer to call her) giving johnny foreigner a ruddy good hiding. 

(Spain was it? They all look the same to me…). 

We have since been rightly installed as favourites for the next few World Cups (or the Britannia and its associated kingdoms Cup, as I prefer to call it). Let’s just wallow in those match stats for a second… 


                                 Spain        England
Possession:                73%            27%
Shots (on target):       24 (6)          5 (3)
Corners:                       12                0

Take that, Sancho!
     
To business…

Goalkeeper                          Pts        GW 8
Ederson (MC)                          43pts        7pts

Defenders

Marcos Alonso (CHE)            60pts         6pts
Andrew Robertson (LIV)        49pts         6pts
Matt Doherty (WOL)               49pts        15pts
Kieran Tripper (TOT)              46pts        7pts

Midfielders

Eden Hazard (CHE)               74pts        14pts
Raheem Sterling (MC)          50pts        3pts
Sadio Mane (LIV)                  48pts        3pt 
Ryan Fraser (BOU)                48pts        6pts

Forwards

Sergio Aguero (MC)              52pts        9pts
Callum Wilson (BOU)            49pts        14pts 

Not much change from Game Week 8, but there’s a new face between the sticks. 

It must be Halloween soon…

Man City’s Ederson might look like the Hulk’s ugly little brother – he’s perhaps the only person whose neck tattoo makes him look less like a serial killer – but he is the ace face in goal. It only took him two matches to clock up his first assist of the season and four clean sheets on the spin has seen him tickle past early leaders the Hennessey (CP) and Etheridge (CAR) into the No 1 spot.   

(I know who I’d rather share a cell with though. He’s a funny shape too – wide hips. Make me feel weird. Perhaps I’ll explore this in future weeks – he’s likely to be in top spot for at least another week, their at home to Burnley this weekend.)

For the thrifty, you can save yourself £1.1m by opting for Patricio (WOL) – who also clambered over a couple into second place. Wolves have kept their sheets clean in four of the last five and face toothless Watford and Brighton next. 

Must be a full moon…

While we’re on the subject, a lone wolf has snuck into our back four. Wandering wing-back Matt Doherty has copped for all of Wolves’ clean sheets, plus a couple of assists and then last week added a goal into the mix. In the process he’s overlapped* England pair Kyle Walker (MC) and Kieron Tripper (TOT).

(* Eh? Eh? You like that…? Yeah, you do. You’re cracking up!).

At a measly £4.8m he’s the pick of the bunch, with the next best option trading at less than £6m Man City’s Laporte – currently ranked 7th. Wolves’ Jonny and Boly are bubbling under and both worth a look at £4.5m and £4.6m respectively.    

Pleading Gylfi in midfield…

Nothing much to report in midfield either. Apart from a 14pt blitz from Hazard (CHE) to put Eden* more distance between him and the pack. 

(* Zing!)

But both Fraser (BOU) and Mane (LIV) have slight doubts this weekend, so it is worth having a gander at Luca Moura (TOT) and Maddison (LEI). Both have been hovering around the fringes of the first X1 for a bit now and at £7.4m and £7m will give you a better exchange rate than Sterling** (MC) at the moment.

(** Zing!!!) 

Everton’s Sigurdsson has had a good couple of weeks too. Four goals from four matches, in fact. And I doubt you’ve already got too many Everton players now, have you…

Aguero is the man. Plain and simple…

Watching Man City’s All Or Nothing documentary has given me a fresh perspective on a few things inside the club. I was surprised how vocal Fabian Delph was/ is… it left me wondering just how much of Guardiola’s Pep*** talks the at-best-pigeon-English speaking players understand… and I thought Sergio Aguero seemed a bit retarded. 

Well perhaps ‘retarded’ is harsh, but a bit simple. He’s a lovely looking boy. But y’know how very pretty girls tend to be a bit… y’know, bubble-headed. He knows where the net is though and looks better than ever this season – racking up four assists alongside his five PL goals. So still top man.

(*** Zi-i-i-ing!!!)

He is joined by Bournemouth’s Callum Wilson, whose one-goal-and-two-assists performance at Watford trumped Lacazette’s two goals at Fulham. 

That’s six assists for Callum now – which is a good job, because he does miss a few stick-ons. But he is keeping Lacazette’s Arsenal mate Aubameyang, Wilson’s Bournemouth mate King and everyone’s matc ‘Arry Kane (TOT) out of the picture. So fair dos.   

On the Watch list…

In summary, these are the bad boys the BaDMan recommends should be on your radar:

GK: Patricio (WOL) – Just 1pt behind Ederson, £1.1m cheaper and less frightening to look at.
DEF: Laporte (MC) is a £1.1m cheaper option than Walker. Jonny and Boly (WOL) will save you £1m+ more.
MID: Maddison (LEI) has been knocking on the door all season. 
FOR: Lacazette (ARS) four goals and four assists in six matches suggests he has got the measure of the PL. Like his boss.  

Play nice.
   
Matt Nesbitt


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 8

Saturday, October 6 2018

 

I listened to Robbie Savage’s Premier League show on Five Live this morning. 

I know he’s been doing it since the World Cup, but I’ve always managed to get to the stereo and axe it into silence, or douse it in acid, or chuck it out the window before any of the clown’s crass, clichéd load of old wank fell out of his face and into my ears.

This morning, however, I wasn’t so sharp and as a result have spent much of the day in the shower. Crying. I just can’t get clean. 

To business…

Goalkeeper                          Pts        GW 7  

Wayne Hennessey (CP)           37pts         2pts

Defenders

Marcos Alonso (CHE)              54pts         8pts
Andrew Robertson (LIV)          43pts         2pts
Kieran Tripper (TOT)                39pts        11pts
Kyle Walker (MC)                     38pts        7pts

Midfielders

Eden Hazard (CHE)                  60pts        10pts
Raheem Sterling (MC)             47pts        14pts
Sadio Mane (LIV)                     45pts        1pt 
Ryan Fraser (BOU)                    42pts        1pt

Forwards

Sergio Aguero (MC)                 43pts        6pts
Harry Kane (TOT)                     44pts        13pts 

It seems as though the World Cup hangover is starting to subside, with four of England’s squad making their first appearance in our Team of the Season.

Wayne still sipping Hennessey…

No, not Jordan Pickford (EVE) – he’s wallowing somewhere between Kasper Schmeichel (LEI) and Jonnas Lossl (HUD) at the moment. So Wayne Hennessey keeps the gloves this week. His 2pts was enough to hold off Burnley’s Hart and Man City’s funny looking Ederson (c’mon, he is) both just a point behind on 36pts. 

£4.6m Hart could take top spot this weekend at home to Huddersfield, but then has a double header of Man City and Chelsea so I will again lob Wolves’ Patricio into the ring, at an even more reasonable £4.5m.  

Right back in the mix…

England’s right-back rivals Tripper (TOT) and Walker (MC) have overlapped their way into our defence. Tripper’s sheet and assist at Huddersfield – ahem, as predicted in my PL Previews (you’re welcome) helping him to a chunky 11pts. Walker notched his third clean sheet in a row and joins Robertson (LIV) and permanent resident Alonso (CHE).

Another World Cup hero Harry Maguire (LEI) is only a couple of points adrift to pushing his ample forehead into our back four and has a tidy run of fixture coming up (Everton, West Ham, Burnley, Cardiff and Brighton among them). One to watch.  

Oh Mo you ditn’t…

(Er, for the purposes of the next line I need you to cast your mind back to the summer brouhaha around Raheem Sterling’s AK47 tattoo. Y’know the one he needs to remind him of the UK’s gang problem and how not to get caught up in it. Similarly, I’ve got a violent rape scene tattooed on my chest as part of the Me Too movement. Anyway, gun tattoo… Raheem Sterling… right?)

Raheem Sterling shot* into our midfield with a goal and assist, squeezing out the ever-so-slightly misfiring Mo Salah. Hazard (CHE), Mane (LIV) and Fraser (BOU) keep their places despite the latter only picking a point apiece last weekend. A 10 from Chelsea’s No 10 keeps him top man.   

(* Eh…? Eh…? Didn’t oversell it did I? Nah, didn’t think so). 

Kane still able…

‘Arry Kane (TOT) hasn’t quite been ‘at it’, as they say, but two-goals and 13pts was enough to put himself up front with Sergio Aguero (MC). H is likely to score goals even at half-tilt, but his tendency to drop back into midfield to get on the ball/ hide (choose one) in recent matches reminds me of the same tactic in the World Cup – when he was clearly carrying a knock. Or maybe it was the hopes of the nation. 
Arsenal’s Lacazette seems to have got the central role ahead of Aubameyang and (at £9.5m) is cheaper than his strike partner (£10.8m). And definitely fit. He is on the watch list too. Speaking of which…      

On the Watch list…

On the bench this week we’ve got a handful of nearly men who could break into the Team of the Season in the next week or two. Or three, international break and all that. 

GK: Patricio (WOL) – Just 5pts off the top, cheap as chips and not giving much away at Molineux.

DEF: Slabhead (LEI) is lumbering up from the back and has potential both ends. 

MID: New England call up Maddison (LEI) could also be promoted to our team soon.

MID: Moura (TOT) – has emerged as Tottenham’s most potent and best value (£7.4m) midfielder.

FOR: Lacazette (ARS) is profiting, or maybe the reason behind Arsenal’s steady progression. 

The Premier League nips out the back for a fag next weekend – it’s time for that League of Gentleman again, or something. But the Boot Room will be open for business the following week.

Hugs. 

Matt Nesbitt
   


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 7

Friday, September 28 2018

Here’s a thing…

I can identify with Jose Mourinho.

As a top FPL manager with a proven record of success (rarely out the Top 100k over the last ten years) I can understand the pressures and feel his frustrations. But I couldn’t help but wince when he made such a point of saying that Paul Pogba would never captain Man United again.

Y’see, I think he might. In fact, if United don’t beat West Ham Saturday and Valencia Tuesday – he might next weekend. Just saying.

Right. To business… 

Goalkeeper                            Pts          GW 6  

Wayne Hennessey (CP)             35pts         8pts

Defenders

Marcos Alonso (CHE)               52pts         6pts
Andrew Robertson (LIV)           41pts         7pts
Jose Holebas (WAT)                 31pts         1pt
Trent Alexander-Arnold (LIV)    34pts        11pts
Mid

fielders

Eden Hazard (CHE)                  50pts        3pts
Sadio Mane (LIV)                     44pts        3pts 
Ryan Fraser (BOU)                   41pts        2pts
Mo Salah (LIV)                         37pts        8pts

Forwards

Sergio Aguero (MC)                  43pts        6pts
Aleksandar Mitrovic (FUL)        39pts        8pts 

Some new faces have forced their way into our Dream Team this week, front to back.

Neil on the Wayne…

The five trips into the back of his own net last week means Cardiff’s Neil Etheridge has finally been ousted in goal. Not Alisson (LIV), not Ederson (MC) – although both are making steady progress – but it is Crystal Palace stopper Wayne Hennessey who dons the gloves, after a tidy 8pt showing v Newcastle. 

Wolves’ Patricio is also worth adding to your Watch List after two sheets in his last three. Cheaper than all of the above too (at £4.5m).

Note: Didn’t Wayne Hennessey used to be a tubby, bald Manc who talked about fashion in Breakfast TV? He’s done very well.

Join the TA fan club…

Trent Alexander-Arnold (LIV) joins his opposite flanker in the back four. His first assist of the campaign, along with a fifth clean sheet gave him 11pts – which was enough to oust Benji Mendy (MC) and hold off his team mates Walker and Laporte. But with Brighton at home next for City, things could look different next week.

The World Cup’s greatest ever full-back Kieron Trippier (TOT) is the second most popular pick at 28% - after Alonso (CHE) at 45% - and could make hay in the next three (v Huddersfield, Cardiff and West Ham). But another wolf  Holy Boly looks value at £4.6m.    

Mo makes his move…

Mo Salah (LIV) has eased himself into this season and now into our Team of the Season. His third goal of the season was enough to vault him ahead of Tottenham’s Moura and Watford’s Pereyra – and you suspect he is there to stay now. But at £12.9m I should blinking well think so.

At roughly half that price, James Maddison (LEI) is just 3pts and one assist behind the Mobot – yes, he also has three goals – so makes our bench. At £6.8m he is currently more saucy business than the best City has to offer – Sterling (pah!) is 1pt behind and £4.2m more and Bernardo Silva (scoff!) dragging by 3pts and £0.7m more. 

Mitrovic muscles in…

We’ve resorted to a 4-4-2 this week to make room for Aleksandar Mitrovic (FUL). His fourth goal in six matches* takes him to within 4pts of the PL’s top gun Sergio Aguero and a good 8pts ahead of anyone else (including an illustrious list of Kanes, Lukakus and Lacazettes…).

* For the benefit of Newcastle fans out there, I’m going to go through those figures again. They are a little baffling if you may have witnessed any of Mitrovic’s career in a black and white striped shirt… 

Four goals in six matches. Played six matches. Scored four goals. Ouch.

On the bench this week…

A couple of paragraphs ago I had the bright idea to add a subs bench for those who didn’t quite make the team, but should be on your FPL radar in the coming weeks. So here it is:

GK: Hart (BUR) – just 2pts off the top and as cheap as they come at £4.5m
DEF: With Mendy injured Walker and Laporte (MC) are better options, just a point or two adrift.
DEF: Palace’s Wan-Bissaka is only a couple back and the bargain of the season at £4.3m.
MID: Maddison (LEI) looks the part and will start every week. 

More from the BaDMan Boot Room next week. 

Play nice.

Matt Nesbitt


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 6

Saturday, September 22 2018

 

Five matches in and the Top Three already looks done and dusted – with perhaps the odd shuffle here and there. The Bottom Four doesn’t look far off either. 

And guess what…? There’s only one change in the Team of the Season so far. 

I might have to start including obscure 80s musical reference into the intros to keep things interesting.

Here are this season’s dandiest highwaymen so far… 

Goalkeeper                          Pts        GW 5  

Neil Etheridge (CAR)             32pts         1pt

Defenders

Marcos Alonso (CHE)            46pts         2pts
Jose Holebas (WAT)              34pts         0pts
Andrew Robertson (LIV)        34pts         2pts
Benjamin Mendy (MC)           32pts         0pts

Midfielders

Eden Hazard (CHE)              47pts        20pts
Sadio Mane (LIV)                  41pts        2pts 
Ryan Fraser (BOU)               39pts        18pts
Lucas Moura (TOT)              31pts        7pts
Roberto Pereyra (WAT)        30pts        4pts

Forwards

Sergio Aguero (MC)              37pts        7pts 

Can you spot the difference from last week? 

Ryan Fraser has slid two-footed into our midfield following his 18pt showing against Leicester – two goals, one assist and a Brucie bonus. His displays this season have drawn comparison with Liverpool’s Fab Three front players. Hmm, not sure Ryan.

Only bettered by our new overall leader Eden Hazard. His show-stopping hat-trick v Cardiff earned him 20pts. His display’s this season have drawn comparisons with Ronaldo and Messi. Hmm, not sure Eden. 

But they were the undeniable stars of our show in Game Week 5.

No change in nets…

A little bit hilariously, the fella on the end of Hazard’s hat-trick keeps his place in our dream team. Cardiff’s Neil Etheridge only has to turn up and register a point to stay ahead of fools like Hennessy (CP) and Hart (BUR). And yes, that’s right - two keepers in the Bottom Four of the PL are currently in the Top Three FPL performers. £4.6m a pop. Think on.  

Bigger price bigger hitters Alisson (LIV) and Ederson (MC) are bubbling just below, so we might be talking about them in the coming weeks.

Business as usual at the back…

The back four stays the same. Holebas (WAT) and Mendy (MC) didn’t even have to register a point between them to stay in residence. And Mendy is a doubt for this weekend. So his opposite flanker Walker might be worth considering at the same price. And Gomez (LIV) is steadily creeping up the charts (unlike the jangly guitar band of the same name who haven’t had a hit since the 90s). 

Not much to add in the middle…

Nothing else to report in midfield, aside from the arrival of Fraser and promotion of Hazard. But the smart move is sticking to five for now – as that’s where the points are being scored. Lucas Moura increasingly looks Tottenham’s best bet, outstripping his World Cup hero club mates.

(I say ‘heroes’ – only one came back with a winner’s medal. And he was so drunk driving home the other night he tore a muscle. He needs to get the brakes of his Citroen seen to).  

Pedro (CHE), Maddison (LEI) and Milner (LIV) – yes, Milner – are lingering at the gates of dream team inclusion. All reasonably priced - £6.8m, £6.6m and £5.6m.

As you were in attack…

At the sharp end, Aguero (MC) remains the man. Comfortably ahead of Mitrovic (FUL), Lukaku (MU), Arnautovic (WH) and Wilson (BOU). Oh and Firmino (LIV) and Murray (BRI) probably deserve a mention – one because he was late to the PL party but now looks to have hit his stride. The other because he is cheap.  

More from the BaDMan Boot Room next week. 
   
Matt Nesbitt


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room – GW 5

Friday, September 14 2018


Don’t call it a comeback. But the Premier League returns this weekend. 

Note: I don’t suppose LL Cool J ever dreamed he would be quoted in BaDMan Boot Room. Twice would be something like a phenomenon.

But if James is going to make any headway up the 80s/90s Hip Hop FPL Table, below are the players he needs to get into his team. (He is currently 14th btw, one place above Eric B and just below Sir Mix-a-lot). Fact.

Here’s this Team of the Season so far…

Goalkeeper                          Pts        GW 4  
Neil Etheridge (CAR)              31pts         3pts

Defenders

Marcos Alonso (CHE)            44pts         9pts
Jose Holebas (WAT)              34pts         10pts
Andrew Robertson (LIV)        32pts         5pts
Benjamin Mendy (MC)           32pts         5pts

Midfielders

Sadio Mane (LIV)                  39pts        10pts 
Lucas Moura (TOT)               24pts        15pts
Roberto Pereyra (WAT)         26pts        8pts
Eden Hazard (CHE)               27pts        11pts
Mo Salah (LIV)                      25pts         8pts

Forwards

Sergio Aguero (MC)               30pts        6pts 

I know what you’re thinking… ‘Five midfielders…?! You’re mad. MAD, I tells ya!!!’

I’ll get to that in a second, but let’s deal with the curiosity in goal first. Yes, it’s still Cardiff’s Neil Etheridge. Worst team in the league, probably. Down by Christmas, possibly. Nine points ahead of Liverpool’s £zillion Alisson, shit yeah.

But before you cash in on the £4.6m bargain… Cardiff are at Chelsea this weekend, so Neil could have a bad case of net-rash by 5pm on Saturday. 

Patricio (WOL) and Pickford (EVE) might be better choices this weekend (at home to Burnley and West Ham).

The Fab back-four keep their places… 

A 10pt weekend from Holebas (WAT) prompted a little shuffle in the pecking order. Scotland’s second best left-back Robertson (LIV) and Man City’s third best left-winger Mendy could only muster 10pts between them. But Alonso (CHE) added a goal (that’s two from four) to his standard assist (that’s five from four) so remains top dog.

So far it is the best defensive performance since Johnny Cochrane in the OJ case.

Tripper (TOT) and Cook (BOU) are bubbling under, but I’m inclined to keep a closer eye on the Liverpool pairing of van Dijk and Gomez. The latter is £1m cheaper that the former. 

I got five on it…  

I’ve gone from three to four to five since the start of the season. And suggest you do the same. Number nines are a thing of the past. Post-Ronaldo and Messi, it’s all about the goal-scoring wide players now. 

Like Salah (LIV) and Hazard (CHE). But they are only the fourth and fifth best on offer. Sadio (LIV) remains the Mane man with another tidy 10pts last week and is joined in the engine room by this season’s surprise packages Pereyra (WAT) and Moura (TOT).

Neither are as easy on the eye as the three previously mentioned but there is plenty of end product – and they are significantly easier on the virtual wallet.

Pedro (CHE) at a thrifty £6.8m and Serri (FUL) at a trifling £5.4m are also worthy of your attention. 

And then there was one…   

If you could only pick one, then Aguro (MC) is probably the pick. Over 52% agree probably, but precisely 52% consider Sergio worth the £11.3m investment. Mitrovic (FUL) is only lagging by 1pt – and about the half the bunce (£6.7m) – but long-term only Lukaku (MU) and Kane (TOT) offer a realistic alternative route to 25+ goals. And there are similarly priced.

Honourable mentions to Wilson (BOU) and Deeney (WAT) too. Their faces might not fit with the FA – both must’ve been a tad miffed at missing out last weekend – but they are hot right now. 

More from the BaDMaN Boot Room next week. But you better leave now – I think I hear Roy Keane coming…
   
Matt Nesbitt


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 4

Friday, August 31 2018

 

One more round of matches and we break for that really exciting and important international tournament that everyone is buzzing about… 

The Nations League series of matches are absolutely NOT simply friendlies by another name to try to distract fans into paying up to £70 to watch a collection of mostly unused substitutes play out a meaningless match.

Bang wrong. Uh uh. Nope. Not at all.

It’s the Nations League. Y’know, a bit like the World Cup, but better. 

Anyway, the sweet FA say it’s happening so there’ll be no Premier League next week.

So savour the Team of the Season so far…

Goalkeeper                    Total        Last week

Neil Etheridge (CAR)               28pts         2pts

Defenders

Marcos Alonso (CHE)             35pts         11pts
Benjamin Mendy (MC)            27pts         4pts
Andrew Robertson (LIV)         27pts         9pts
Jose Holebas (WAT)               24pts         9pts

Midfielders

Sadio Mane (LIV)                    29pts        3pts 
Roberto Pereyra (WAT)          26pts        8pts
Mo Salah (LIV)                        25pts         8pts
Lucas Moura (TOT)                 24pts        15pts

Forwards

Sergio Aguero (MC)                 24pts        2pts 
Alexsandar Mitrovic (FUL)      24pts        16pts 

But who’s going to do a job wherever you put them on the park this week, gaffers?

Boots off, slippers on. We’re heading for the BaDMaN Boot Room…

How long can this Welsh drag on… 

Cardiff stopper Etheridge is hanging on to the No.1 spot by the skin of his Sondicos. But with Arsenal in town there are better options around. Pickford (EVE) is a decent option with Everton entertaining goal-shy Huddersfield. They’ve managed just three shots on target so far. This season. 

Gullit bullet… er… mullet

Alonso (CHE) took a bit of stick from Ruud Gullit this week. More like a midfielder, apparently. And too tall and slow. Perhaps it was just the two assists and 11pts this week. Liverpool’s left back Robertson pushed him close and is averaging 9pts a week so far – so is on schedule for a 342pts season. Get him in. Like now.

The other perma-member of our select back four, Mendy (MC) had a quiet one, but is likely to be tearing up Newcastle’s right flank on Saturday teatime. But who joins them…

Hornet Holebas (WAT) played his way back in with a goal at the weekend. But going to Tottenham on Monday night might have you thinking about drafting in a Palace or Everton replacement. Their assignments at home to Southampton and Huddersfield should keep your sheets pristine.

Schlupp (CP) is the cheapest and best option at just £4.5m. With more to come from the likes of Baines and Coleman (both EVE) for a touch more dollar. 

Get your Hazards on…

Another goal from Pereyra (WAT) has taken him to shirt-tugging distance of the Mane (LIV) man. With the jet-heeled Mo (LIV) and Moura (TOT) crashing the party on the back of match-winning performances. 

You’ll get no arguments from me about any of them. But I will throw in a Hazard (CHE) warning that Eden is ready to play from the start. That means trouble for Bournemouth. Wolves’ Neves is currently level on pts, but going to £5.4m less – and won’t let you down at West Ham.

And Man City might react to spilling a couple of points last week. Their midfield is a bit of a quandary at the moment though, with Pep tending to favour his technicians over his speedsters at the mo. Gundogan is the mack daddy at the minute - and a snip at £5.5. Bernardo Silva makes a case, but wants another £2.1 off you. 

Looking to the middle order…

Two goals and an assist for big Alex Mitrovic (FUL) means he bundles past Aguero (MC) and is officially the greatest ever striker to play in the Premier League. Between last week and this, that is. 

On the plus side, he and his West London dandies are off to Brighton this weekend. And could well come back with pts. On the negative side, he is a clumsy cunt who just as likely to drop the nut on someone. So – personally – I’ll be looking elsewhere. 

In the mid-range, Arnautovic (WH), Zaha (CP) and Tosun (EVE) are worthy of your attention. In the bargain basement I like the look of Jiminez (and the sound. Ahem… hhhhhhimineth. Nice.) And Burnley have had little joy in front of goal so far, but whipping boys Man United are in town. 

Wood has been mainly on PL duty. 

More BaDMaN Boot Room banter next week. Now GET OUT!


 


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 3

Friday, August 24 2018

 

So GW 3 and you’re still in the job, eh?  Still not lost the dressing room or upset the boardroom either. You’re doing well.

Better than Jose anyway. 

And in the BaDMaN Boot Room we’re here to help you perfect your team. Every week we’ll update you with the best performing X1 so far with a few pointers on who should be drafted in, or booted out for the upcoming set of matches.

Here’s the Team of the Season so far…

Goalkeeper                           Pts

Neil Etheridge (CAR)                        26pts 

Defenders

Marcos Alonso (CHE)                      24pts 
Benjamin Mendy (MC)                     23pts 
Steve Cook (BOU)                            13pts 
Andrew Robertson (LIV)                  12pts 

Midfielders

Sadio Mane (LIV)                             26pts 
Richarlison (EV)                               23pts 
Paul Pogba (MU)                             18pts 
Roberto Pereyra (WAT)                   18pts

Forwards

Sergio Aguero (MC)                         22pts 
Callum Wilson (BOU)                       14pts 

So where are the points going this weekend? Take a deep breath, hold your nose – it’s time to enter the BaDMaN Boot Room

C’mon now, be honest… was Cardiff keeper Etheridge on your pre-season shortlist? He is currently making 3.5% of teams and could keep his place at goal-shy Huddersfield. 

Alisson (LIV) and Ederson (MC) are obvious replacements but McCarthy (SOU) has matched their 13pts so far and is £1m cheaper.

The case for the defence…

Get used to seeing Mendy (MC) and Alonso (CHE) in the team of the week. Robertson (LIV) too has similar clean sheet and assist pedigree.    
 

Cook (BOU) is what’s wrong – or, at least surprising – about this picture. Thanks to a goal and assist double adding to his opening weekend sheet. More goodies at home to Everton is not out of the question, but there are some handy looking alternatives to consider.

Holebas (WAT) and Schlupp (CP) face each other this weekend and can be picked up at the same price as Cook (£4.6m). For £0.4m more you could draft in Gomez and Alexander-Arnold (both LIV) for a fruitful looking assignment at home to Brighton.

But if that takes you over your Liverpool quota, I’ll have a stab you won’t have three Cardiff on board. So 9pt Bennett is an option decent £4.5m option at Huddersfield – but make it short-term, there’s Arsenal, Chelsea and Man City on the horizon.  

Go four it this weekend…

I’ve gone 4-4-2 this week as Midfield is where it’s at. Mane (LIV) and Richarlison (EV) lead the pack and may well both like to be beside the seaside this week, with Brighton and Bournemouth up next.

Pogba (MU) has loped into the picture on the back of two worth-the-run-up penalties. And needs a big one v Tottenham, so by all means give the boy a break. But I’m drawn to a slew of cheaper, more bankable options.

His old mate Mkhitaryan (ARS) is one - £1m cheaper and with a tidy run of fixtures ahead. Walcott (EV) is another – available at £6.5m and (like his team mates) starting to look the part.

If you haven’t already and you can, Salah (LIV) could be waiting to explode onto Brighton - showering by standers in goals and assists (Liverpool have hit 15 in three encounters). And at the other end of the scale, Fraser (BOU) is punching above his price tag.  

Get in with the Ings crowd…

At the sharp end, Aguero (MC) leads the way – and almost half of players’ assault. And Wilson (BOU) is enjoying – or maybe causing – Bournemouth’s fast start.  

Deeney (WAT) has muscled his way into the picture – matching Wilson on 14pts - but Ings (SOU) and even club mate Gray (WAT) might be a better long term choice at around the same price. But this is big boy territory and there are plenty bubbling under the surface.

Kane (TOT) and Lukaku (MU) are obvious picks. And there’s more to come from Firmino (LIV) and Morata (CHE).

More BaDMaN Boot Room banter next week. Shut the door on the way out.


 


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View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 2

Friday, August 17 2018

 

A wise man once wrote ‘let me be your fantasy’.

That wise man was Phil Fearon from early 90s breakbeat and house act Baby D. And what I think he meant to say was, ‘let me be your Fantasy… League guide for the coming season’.

No? 

Suit yourself.

Anyway, that’s we’ll be doing at BaDMaN. Providing you with a weekly summary of the optimum Fantasy League team, with a few pointers on who should stay or go for the upcoming set of fixtures.

This is the best performing X1 so far. Yes, I know we’re only a game in but the stats say that if the world ended right now, today on Friday August 17th – this is the best performing X1 in the Premier League. 

Goalkeeper                                Pts

Alex McCarthy (SOU)                          11pts 

Defenders

Benjamin Mendy (MC)                         15pts 
Jose Holebas (WAT)                            13pts 
Aaron Wan-Bissaka (CP)                     12pts 
Marcos Alonso (CHE)                          11pts 

Midfielders

Sadio Mane (LIV)                                 16pts 
Roberto Pereyra (WAT)                       16pts 
Richarlison (EV)                                   14pts 

Forwards

Callum Wilson (BOU)                           8pts 
Jamie Vardy (LEI)                                6pts 
Raul Jimenez (WOL)                           6pts 

But it’s not all about the numbers. So looking ahead to this weekend’s fixtures, here are a few idle thoughts from the BaDMaN Boot Room

A Saint can go marching out…

In between the sticks, Alex McCarthy’s (SOU) Fantasy season may well have peaked with his opening day 11pts. I’m less optimistic about his chances of keeping a clean sheet at Everton as I am Ederson (MC), Lloris (TOT) and Hart (BUR) at home to Huddersfield, Fulham and Watford.

If it aint broke, don’t Mendy it…

At the back, Mendy (MC) and Alonso (CHE) will probably stay right where they are all season. But Holebas is as unlikely to bag another two assists this week as Pereyra is to score them both. And Wan-Bissaka’s impressive Premier League debut doesn't cut any ice with Liverpool next up at Palace.

Tottenham and Man City look handy to keep clean sheets. But Mee, Tarkowski and Lowton (BUR) and Gomez (LIV) offer better value.

The Neves kid on the block…

Mane (LIV) remains a main man in midfield. Richarlison (EV) too, although I’m less convinced he will stay as long as Sadio. But I’m looking towards Man City, West Ham, Leicester and Wolves for goals this weekend. With Neves (WOL) getting the nod for adding to his hype with an opening day goal and assist.

Up top, Wilson (BOU) looked sharp as a tack last week and will enjoy the Hammers’ hospitality. Likewise, there is no good reason to drop Vardy (LEI) aside from his personality, rancid missus and vile little rat-boy face, that is. But Jimenez could probably make way for a bigger hitter. 

Kane looks able…

Lukaku (MU), Kane (TOT), Aguero (MC) and – a yet to get off the mark – Firmino are obvious candidates. Wood (BUR) and Arnautovic (WH) less so. 

More BaDMaN Boot Room banter next week.


 


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What we learned from Game Week 38 - Final Day

Monday, May 14 2018

 

Well, that’s that for another season. In the Premier League at least. We escaped a treacherous looking coupon about 5pts to the good. 

Final Day is predictably unpredictable – away wins for Bournemouth, Stoke and Arsenal (their first away points of 2018) and nine-goals at Spurs were never getting backed. But United, Liverpool and City (eventually) did the business and kept our heads above water.

GW 38

Strikerate

Pts Profit

Tap Ins

5 out of 7

-0.22

Smart bets

3 out of 8

-1.15

Long Shots

1 out of 4

7.0

Scorecasts

1 out of 10

-1.5

 

Could’ve done with Burnley not throwing away a half-time lead and a West Brom goal would also have cracked a smile. But smashing in a 10/1 Long Shot at Newcastle gave me a warm, fuzzy feeling.

So here’s the end of season report card…

Season 2017/2018:

Points Profit:

Tap Ins

0.65

Smart bets

24.22

Long Shots

13.07

Scorecasts

-2.00

Total

35.94

 

With an additional 47.72pts to be added from our weekly Coupon Busters, that’s Badmen 83.66pts in front for the season. To £10 stakes that's £836.60 worth of beer tokens. 

No drama…

The only real potential for drama was at Swansea, where it turns out a 10-goal win against Stoke would’ve been enough with Man City pinching a last minute winner at Southampton
Instead the Swans revealed themselves to be ugly duckling after all, rolling over to their fellow Championship newbies.

The (surely soon to be departing) Carlos Carvalhal blamed the team’s poor start. I guess we’re to take it he means the bit before he arrived. And definitely not the last nine, from which they dredged just 3pts, no wins and 3 goals. 

…just harsh reality.

Their run-in included matches against Huddersfield, West Brom, Southampton and Stoke. All teams that ended up either relegated or who could’ve been sent down in their place. But they could only muster draws at West Brom and Huddersfield – with a total of just ONE shot on target from BOTH matches – and lost the other two.

THAT is what’s to blame, Carlos.  

Keep an eye on your inbox for my summer betting bulletins, including any value I spot at home and abroad. I’ve got the World Cup in my crosshairs and will update shortly. Shorty.
  

Matt Nesbitt


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Coupon Busters - Game Week 38

Saturday, May 12 2018

 

Hey boy, hey girl. Superstar tipster Matt Nesbitt is ready to go… 

Busting this Coupon will be like punching smoke. 

But seeing as we're gloved up...

Banker of the Week

  1. Liverpool to beat Brighton at 1/5
  2. Man United to beat Watford at 2/5
  3. Man City to beat Southampton at 4/9
  4. Tottenham to beat Leicester at 3/10

There’s no room for showboating on Final Day, so we’re putting our limited faith in the four teams that logically, sensibly, legally, all things being reasonable should – SHOULD, I tells ya – deliver the goods, despite the last day of school hoopla.

Liverpool will have a full(ish) side out and want a slick, sharp performance to take into the Champions League Final in a couple of weeks. Likewise United for next week’s FA Cup and, although we can expect a couple of changes, they are ones that most people would make anyway. 

City have 100pts to shoot for and once Southampton get wind that Swansea are NOT 6-0  up at half-time, they will roll over for a belly tickle. And Leicester assumed that position a month ago.

Place it with Coral and you get a 10% Bonus on all winning accas of four of more...

  • Bet: Four-fold at 2/1 (3.0)

  
Value of the Week

We’re not spoiled for choice for the season closer, but the bookies have dangled a bit of value which is worth snapping up.

Strictly speaking, the best value punt of the week is opposing Arsenal at Huddersfield.

You’ll only get 7/5, but covering the no doubt pumped up Terriers after season-saving Draws with Man City and Chelsea against a team looking for their first away point of 2018. Well, it’s buying money surely – Wenger’s last match, or not.

  • Bet: Double Chance – Huddersfield or Draw v Arsenal at 7/5 (2.4)

I also quite like/ I’m struggling to find anything other than (choose one) wins for Burnley and Palace. Burnley’s excellent season has somewhat stumbled to a conclusion so a Final Day flourish would do nicely. And there are few more suitable guests for such an occasion than one-win-in-12-on-the-road Bournemouth.

Palace and West Brom have finished the season 5th and 6th in the form table. But while Palace are now contemplating a Top Half finish, the Baggies’ said ‘laterz’ to the PL without kicking a ball midweek. Just when it looked like something ridiculous might happen. 

  • Bet: Win Double – Burnley v Bournemouth & Palace v WBA at 14/5+ (3.8+)

And if you’re feeling fruity, there is likely to be some lazy defending on show so goals around.

  • Bet: Win Double – Burnley & Palace both Win & BTTS at 13/1+ (14.0+)

 

Long Shot

And just for a silly punt, how about a few shekels on Michael Carrick to notch in his last ever match. if United get a penalty, perhaps even free-kick within range the ball could end up in his hands. I don’t many goals in the game, so am tempted to go Last rather than First.

  • Bet: Michael Carrick to Score Last v Watford at 12/1

That’ll do you for the Premier League this season. But I’ll steaming into the FA Cup, Europa and Champions League Finals and there’s something going on in Russia in the summer too. So don’t touch that dial.

Collect your money.

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 38

Friday, May 11 2018

 

Matt Nesbitt has got that Final Day Friday feeling. It's tipping time...

The best tip I could give this weekend is: don't whistle with blancmange in your mouth. Oh and - keep a lid on your punting spend. 

Results over the last couple of weeks – Huddersfield at City AND Chelsea, Tottenham v West Brom, Man United at Brighton, to name a few – illustrate the perils of trying to predict matches at this stage of the season. Motivation varies, agendas don’t align and us punters pay the price.

With nothing more to be settled (really), Final Day is all about testimonials, laps of honour and keeping out the way of any spiteful fuckers trying to ruin your summer tab by putting a bit of you in plaster.

But we’re here now…  

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value out of the bookies. And any Long Shots are decent priced punts that have some statistical merit. 

All Scorecasts are priced up too – and can steer you towards Colossus’ £5k - £5 million jackpots  this weekend. And there’s £100 in free bets with Colossus is you sign up with this code: RAFMTS5UU4

Eyes down.

Sunday:
3pm Burnley v Bournemouth

Lap of honour time for Burnley. Untouchable in 7th place, their season has been over for a week or two in truth.  Just two points from the last four – earned at Stoke and at home to Brighton - that would probably have translated into 4pts, perhaps 6pts a month ago. But they will enjoy a well-deserved end-of-season friendly. 
Bournemouth could play themselves into the Top Half, depending on other results. But have only mustered two wins from their last 11 – one v relegated West Brom, the other v teetering on the brink Swansea – so I’m not expected a party pooping display.   
Scorecast: 2-1 at 15/2.
Tap In: Burnley Draw No Bet at 8/15.
Smart Money: Burnley & BTTS at 3/1.

3pm Crystal Palace v West Brom
Over the last six matches, these two are 5th and 6th in the form table. It’s a case of too little too late for the Baggies, but all timed rather nicely for Palace. In fact, a win could give them a Top Half finish – depending on other results (I’ve a feeling that phrase is going to get a few airings this week…). 
And now that West Brom are confirmed as relegated, there could be an absence of wind from their sails. So Palace might whiff the chance of a third consecutive win for the first time since March last year. West Brom could also win a third on the spin – which will be their first since… wait for it… November 2012. 
Scorecast: 2-1 at 7/1.
Tap In: Palace Draw No Bet at 1/3.
Smart Money: Palace & BTTS at 12/5.

3pm Huddersfield Town v Arsenal
This could’ve been a very different season finale if Huddersfield hadn’t smuggled a point out of Stamford Bridge on Wednesday. But with another season at the top table sorted, they can enjoy Arsene Wenger’s farewell as much as the man himself. 
I doubt either team has seen much of the training ground this week and daresay the players will have the bar/ beach (choose one) on their minds as much as the result here. 
But Arsenal won’t be proud of their 2018 away record of zero points and Huddersfield will fancy adding the Gunners to the list of Man Utd, City and Chelsea – all teams they have taken points from. 
Scorecast: 1-1 at 15/2.
Tap In: Huddersfield (+2) Handicap at 8/15.
Smart Money: Double chance - Huddersfield or Draw at 7/5.
Long Shot: Huddersfield Win & BTTS at 15/2.
  
3pm Liverpool v Brighton 
Liverpool are perhaps the only team on the coupon who will be anywhere near full-tilt on Sunday afternoon. (Even Swansea must know the game is up). With the big one still two weeks away,  Klopp will roll out all his big guns and want to go into the Champions League Final on the back of a good show. As it stands, two defeats and a dour 0-0 at home to the PL’s worst team isn’t the way to prepare for mission Real Madrid. 
Plus, there is a chance – albeit slim – that Chelsea could still tip-toe into fourth place. And that wouldn’t do at all.
Brighton have taken just 2pts and scored a single goal away to Top Half teams so far. But won’t worry about that today.   
Scorecast: 3-0 at 13/2.
Tap In: Liverpool Win at 2/11. 
Smart Money: Liverpool Win to Ni at Evens. 

3pm Man United v Watford
A win for United will mean only noisy neighbours City can boast a better Home record. And only a couple of teams have been better on the road. Which is good. They might even win the FA Cup, which would be very good. But there has been an unconvincing vibe about Jose and his team this season. Seeing them beaten by West Brom (at home), Brighton and Huddersfield mean you wouldn’t be surprised to see Watford take the points here. Even though it would only their second win at a Top Half team all season. 
Not one to bet the farm on, that’s for shizzle.  
Scorecast: 1-0 at 15/2.
Smart Money: Under 2.5 Goals at 29/20.
Long Shot: Michael Carrick to Score last at 12/1.

3pm Newcastle United v Chelsea
Chelsea’s lap of (dis) honour barely strayed outside the centre circle after being held by Huddersfield in the week (who were quite rightly going mental). Failing to finish Top Four just a year after finishing as champions clearly stung. They can still qualify for the Champions, if Liverpool lose at home to Brighton and they win at Newcastle. But neither look likely.
In fact, Chelsea have failed to win their last four trips to Toon (D1 L3). And despite looking leggy in their last four, Newcastle have been decent at home in 2018 (W4 D3 L1) and want to finish on a Why Aye high.
Scorecast: 0-0 at 11/1.
Smart Money: Double Chance - Newcastle or Draw at 7/5.
Long Shot: Newcastle Win to Nil at 10/1. 

3pm Southampton v Man City
A point will do for Southampton. A defeat might too, so long as there is not a nine-goal shift between this match and Swansea v Stoke. So it might depend on what kind of mood Man City turn up in. 
City have already broken the goal-scoring record for a 38-game season, but needed a 90th minute winner to get past the Saints back in December. And Southampton’s tails will be up after four matches unbeaten – their best form of the season – including two wins, which could easily been three (in three) but for a late heart-breaker at Everton.  Snatching relegation from the jaws of survival here is unthinkable. Isn’t it?
Scorecast: 2-4 at 33/1.
Tap In: Man City to Win at 4/9.
Smart Money: Man City & BTTS at 7/4.

3pm Swansea City v Stoke City
After taking 13pts from six matches in their winter revival, Swansea looked to have written the story of their season. But since beating West Ham on March 3rd - eight matches ago - they have only added three more points, firing no fewer than six blanks. And seem to have pinned their happy ending on their final two matches v relegation bedfellows Southampton and Stoke. The first was lost last week and in between Huddersfield have gone off script at Man City, then Chelsea. So now the Swans are looking for a drubbing here and a drubbing at Southampton, delivering a nine-goal swing in their favour. Oops.   
Scorecast: 1-1 at 6/1.
Tap in: Swansea Draw No Bet at 2/5.
Long Shot: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 4/1.

3pm Tottenham v Leicester City
The wheels have come off both teams in the last six matches. Or, more accurately, slowed to a crawl. Leicester’s four defeats were less costly, restricting them to a more than acceptable ninth place finish. Tottenham suffered one less defeat, but it cost them a Cup Final place and a runner-up spot that would’ve marked progress. 
Anything less than a win could see them drop to fourth and ends the campaign just 1pt better off than Chelsea. And they are better than that.
Leicester enjoyed one last hurrah at home to Arsenal, but it was prompted more by the visitor’s team selection – particularly the one who decided to get himself red carded 15 minutes in – than any fire in bellies.
Scorecast: 2-0 at 7/1.
Tap In: Tottenham Win at 3/10.
Smart Money: HT/FT Draw/ Tottenham at 3/1.

3pm West Ham v Everton
Not sure which set of fans have been less satisfied this season. West Ham will be grateful for the handful of even worse teams below them for their survival. Likewise, Everton might wonder just how they have found themselves in 8th place this season – which is just about their average finishing position over the past six season (7.83rd to be precise). 
The answer is their form v teams below them. At home their 30pts from a possible 36pts v teams outside the Top Eight was only topped by Man City, Liverpool and Arsenal. On the road, their three unbeaten (W2 D1) suggest they can take something away from West Ham. If not the season as a whole.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 11/2.
Long Shot: HT/FT Draw/ Draw at 21/5.

Final Day Coupon Busters can be equally tricky to pick – like punching smoke. But there are a couple of big prices around, so we’ll get gloved up and have a go.

Meet you back here about 3pm.

Matt Nesbitt


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What we learned from Game Week 37

Wednesday, May 9 2018

 

Looks like Matt Nesbitt has got some chips. Hang on, is that piss all over them...?

The less said out last weekend’s load of old shite, the better. And no that wasn’t a quote from Jose Mourinho. Or Mauricio Pochettino. 

Managed to snaffle a small profit from Smart Bets but from the moment Brighton took the lead against the listless Man United on Friday night, I feared the worst. 

GW 37

Strikerate

Pts Profit

Tap Ins

1 out of 8

-6.34

Smart bets

2 out of 7

2.0

Long Shots

1 out of 5

-0.8

Scorecasts

0 out of 10

-10.0


It’s a tricky time of year for punting, with only a handful of teams with anything to play for. And plenty of other that have either packed up for the summer (Leicester), run out of steam (Newcastle, Tottenham), bigger fish to fry (Liverpool, Man United) or suddenly remembered what they do for a living (West Brom, Chelsea). 

Coupon Busters

Pts Profit

Bankers

-1.0

Value Picks

-2.0

TV Treble

-1.0

 

I’ve bypassed the midweek fixtures, but we will be looking for a Final Day looting on Sunday. At least by then all teams will know exactly what they are dealing with. And so will we.

So I’ll see you back here on Friday morning. Bring your dinner. 

Matt Nesbitt


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Coupon Busters - Game Week 37

Saturday, May 5 2018

 

Extinguish all cigarettes and turn off phones, it's Matt Nesbitt with this weekend's Coupon Busters...

Two more chances to put the bookies' Premier League pants down this season.

Get to it...

Banker of the Week

  1. Double Chance Newcastle or Draw v Watford at 4/7
  2. HT/FT Man City/ Man City v Huddersfield at 2/5
  3. Bournemouth v Swansea BTTS at 7/10
  4. Chelsea v Liverpool BTTS at 8/13

Bankers are thin on the ground this weekend, but here’s a four-fold that – all things being right and proper – deliver a saucy little 24/5 (that’s 5.8 in decimal and just short of 5/1 in plain talk). 

Place it with Coral and you get a 10% Bonus on all winning accas of four of more...

Watford and Newcastle’s race in run, but the home team’s five blanks in seven convinces me they are worth opposing… Swansea will enter their (very nearly) last chance saloon all guns blazing and Liverpool don’t know any other way to play. But both have leaks so I’m happy to take goals at both ends when they visit Bournemouth and Chelsea… Before topping up with a record-chasing City mauling a finger-crossing Huddersfield from the off.

Get on. 

  • Bet: Treble at 24/5 (5.8)

  
Value of the Week

Coupon’s full of matches that either don’t need to be won are always littered with draws and there are plenty of contenders this weekend.

I could see Stoke v Palace, Leicester v West Ham and Arsenal v Burnley all ending level but I’m going for: 

  • Bet: Draw Trixie – Bournemouth v Swansea, Watford v Newcastle United & Chelsea v Liverpool

Note: A Trixie is four bets (three doubles and a treble). So, for example, a £1 stake will cost £4 and pay a maximum return of £73.85 (around 18/1) if they all come in. Any two pays £11 (around 3/1). 

I also think that Stoke have been a bit unlucky in recent matches and things could go there way on Saturday lunchtime. It’s now or never, after all. It won’t be a goal-fest so we’ll squeeze a little extra value from going under 3.5 goals.

  • Bet: Stoke Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 5/2

 

TV Treble

Watch and earn with these three this weekend…

  1. Man United to win at 3/4
  2. Everton to win at 15/8
  3. Chelsea v Liverpool BTTS
  • Bet: Treble at 15/2+ 

Collect your money.

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 37

Friday, May 4 2018

 

Matt Nesbitt has been reading the Tarot cards again...

I’ll be glad when this is all over… 

Another horrible week of dead rubbers, testimonials and teams with agendas so different (beach v PL survival) that gawd knows what we’re going to get.

I’ve hedged with value and just know that I’ve done my best. I. Did. My. Best. 

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value out of the bookies. And any Long Shots are decent priced punts that have some statistical merit. 

All Scorecasts are priced up too – and can steer you towards Colossus’ £5k - £5 million jackpots  this weekend. And there’s £100 in free bets with Colossus is you sign up with this code: RAFMTS5UU4

No diving, bombing or heavy petting.

Friday:
8pm Brighton v Man United

Brighton’s point at Burnley last week – their 37th – could be the last they get this season. After United it’s away trips to record-chasing Man City and potential Champions League winners Liverpool. But it should be enough to keep them on the Premier League island for another season, so this could be something of a lap of honour in front of the home crowd.
That will suit United, who have played at testimonial pace most of the season. But it has taken them to second place in the table and the Cup Final. And they are likely to do enough again here.
Scorecast: 1-2 at 7/1.
Tap in: Man United to Win at 3/4..
Smart Money: Man United Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 6/4.
 
Saturday:
12.30pm Stoke v Crystal Palace

If results had gone differently last weekend, this could’ve been a six-pointer – with Stoke having the chance to drag Palace back into the relegation mire for the final weekend. As it is, Stoke’s draw at Liverpool and Palace’s drubbing of Leicester has put 8pts and eight places between the teams. So expect contrasting moods in the camps.
Stoke need to win to give themselves a slither of a chance of survival. Palace are on easy street, but will be buoyed by the confidence of a decent final quarter of the season – their last six form puts them eighth in the PL. Fancy to Stoke to nick it – and value is on our side.
Scorecast: 1-0 at 6/1.
Tap in: Stoke Draw No Bet at 4/5.
Smart Money: Stoke Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 5/2.

3pm Bournemouth v Swansea
Another contrast in dressing room vibes here. Swansea find themselves once again scrapping for their lives after six without a win, whereas Bournemouth are breathing the rarefied air of mid-table (12th). An away win would take Swansea to within 2pts of their hosts and all but guarantee another meeting next season. But defeat could see them level with Stoke, leapfrogged by Southampton and below the dreaded red dotted line by bedtime.
On the plus side, Bournemouth’s form is only marginally better than the visitors – losing the last three and failing to score in two of them. Swansea have the safety net of two home six-pointers v Southampton and Stoke to come, but would love to get their business done here. Can’t see it.
Scorecast: 2-2 at 6/1.
Tap In: Both Teams to Score at 7/10. 
Smart Money: Draw & BTTS at 10/3.

3pm Leicester v West Ham
Leicester seem to have clocked off early for the season, taking just 1pt from their last four (at home to Southampton). There’s even talk of changing the manager – but it has been six months, I s’pose. A mixture of mid-table comfort and one or two keeping themselves injury-free for summer engagements in Russia, or La Manga means Leicester can’t be trusted to squeeze anything more out of this season.
Which will, of course, be music to West Ham’s collective ears who could still get caught up in the relegation bun-fight, especially if they leave Leicester empty handed. If results don’t go their way, Moyes’ boys could be in the Bottom Three with two to play – both v former clubs Man United and Everton. 
Scorecast: 1-1 at 11/2.
Smart Money: Draw at 12/5.
Long Shot: West Ham & Under 3.5 Goals at 16/5.

3pm Watford v Newcastle United
It’s been a funny old season for Watford; stared well and looked Top Half material, then died and threatened to spiral into a relegation scrap. Then rallied, then died. Their 38pts will see them live to fight another Premier League campaign but it is hard to see where their next point – or even goal – is coming from after just 2pts and five blanks from their last seven.
Unless Newcastle have run out of steam, which I have an inkling they might have. Their excellent run of four wins – in the midst of 16pts from a possible 21pts – has come to an inglorious end, stumbling to drab defeats at Everton and at home to West Brom. Hard to see anything more than a draw here.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Tap In: Double Chance Newcastle or Draw at 4/7.
Long Shot: Newcastle Win to Nil at 21/5.

3pm West Brom v Tottenham
West Brom could stay up y’know. I’ll say that again… West Brom could stay up. It would take results to go their way – most notably Southampton to only register one more point – and beating both Tottenham then Palace on the final day. But the fact that it could means Darren Moore has already been the Baggies’ best manager for years. 
Tottenham looked to be motoring towards a strong finish until a bad week at the hands of the Manc pair rendered third place the best they can hope for. So their mood will be tricky to gauge.  The next big game for most of the players – if they’re honest – will be in Russia in June. But they should have enough quality in hand to get something, despite obvious coupon stopper potential.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 15/2.
Tap In: West Brom (+2) Handicap at 4/6.
Smart Money: West Brom Draw No Bet at 4/1.

5.30pm Everton v Southampton
Everton’s home record tells the story of their season. They have won ten of the 11 v teams below them (9th place down), but taken just 2pts from the seven above. The seven they’ve spent the last ten years and a summer fortune trying to penetrate. 
And there’s more bad news… they’ve looked every inch a Big Sam team in the last couple of weeks. So the Top Seven looks safe.
In their last four they’ve have been dour, physical, hard to beat – exactly what Southampton could do without at the moment. The Saints need 4pts, possibly 6pts from their last three – and can probably write off the Man City game on final day. So it’s all on this. 
Scorecast: 1-0 at 7/1.
Tap In: Everton Draw No Bet at 19/20.
Long Shot: Everton Win to Nil at 15/4.

Sunday:
1.30pm Man City v Huddersfield Town

The bookmakers are quoting 1/10 for a Home Win and I reckon that’s decent value. Huddersfield have taken 1pt from their eight matches away to Top Half teams and are yet to score. They look far and away the heaviest and clumsiest of the teams currently tip-toeing around the PL trap door. Their 35pts really should’ve been topped up at Newcastle, Brighton or at home to Everton because it’s a trip to Chelsea up next. So come last day their survival will depend on spoiling Arsene Wenger’s swansong. 
As for City, they could win at a canter but I have a feeling watching Liverpool in Europe might make them spiteful.
Scorecast: 5-0 at 9/1.
Tap In: HT/FT City/City at 2/5.  
Long Shot: City Win, Both Teams to Score: NO, Under 10.5 Corners & Under 35.5 Booking Points at 7/2. (Coral #YourCall)

4.30pm Arsenal v Burnley
You say ‘dead’, I’ll ‘rubber’. While Arsenal have been good at home – excellent, in fact. Only Man City have been better – coming off the back of a crushing Europa League exit, that form can’t be trusted. Chelsea and fifth place are out of reach so the only incentive here is keeping their foot on Burnley’s head in sixth. Aside from it being Arsene’s last home game and all that. 
Clambering past Arsenal in the table would support Sean Dyche’s (already decent) claims tfor Manager of the Year, but his team has looked leggy in the last couple of matches. They wilted late to Chelsea and couldn’t stir up the grit to put away Stoke or Brighton. Bit of a testimonial feel here.  
Scorecast: 1-1 at 7/1.
Tap In: Burnley (+2) Handicap at 8/15. 
Smart Money: Total Booking Points – Under 15 at 3/1.

4.30pm Chelsea v Liverpool
Chelsea look interested again now. Perhaps the thought of the FA Cup Final has perked them up a bit. Although it’s true that there best work has taken place on the road recently – Swansea have been better at home over the last four matches. 
Of course, Liverpool can trump Chelsea’s Cup Final – but it could have the opposite effect. So long as Liverpool can beat Brighton on the final day, a draw will secure a top four finish – keeping Chelsea in fifth. So they can afford a slip here, but you suspect there’ll be enough swagger from Wednesday to nick a share of the spoils. 
Scorecast: 2-2 at 11/1.
Tap In: Both teams to Score at 8/13.
Smart Money: Draw & Both Teams to Score at 13/4.
Long Shot: Liverpool Win & BTTS at 9/2.

Would you care for some Coupon Busters to follow, sir? No problem. Watch this space...

Matt Nesbitt


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What we learned from Game Week 36

Tuesday, May 1 2018

 

A shamefaced and tearful Matt Nesbitt is back with a stream of insincere apologies and lame excuses...

Well, it did look a tricky one. Wins for Southampton (!), West Brom (!!) and a point for Stoke at Liverpool says everything about the weekend. 

We scrambled a profit – just – from Tap Ins, Smart Bets and Banker of the Week. But nothing else fell our way.

I take responsibility, calling the draw between Liverpool and Stoke but not having the cojones to commit to it. And just got too many calls bang wrong, so I’m the big wanker of the week.

GW 36

Strikerate

Pts Profit

Tap Ins

6 out of 8

0.57

Smart bets

3 out of 6

1.45

Long Shots

0 out of 4

-4.0

Scorecasts

0 out of 10

-10.0

 

A goal for Leicester and one less for Man City would’ve put a nicer gloss on things. But again we had to turn to Burnley to do us a solid – with 5pts from their nailed on Draw with Brighton. We’ll just have to write this one off as a bad un. 

Coupon Busters

Pts Profit

Bankers

4.0

Value Picks

-2.0

TV Treble

-1.0

 

One good thing emerged from the weekend though… With the three teams below the red dotted relegation line all getting results and the three immediately above not, it means the season might not be over after all. 

The Final Day might be worth watching after all…

If Darren Moore keeps West Brom up after being in charge for just six matches, they should scratch out Pep’s name from the Manager of the Year Award and hand it to the big man. It could happen, y’know...

It won’t, but the fact that it even could after their season is remarkable. Beating both Tottenham and Palace in their last two is unlikely enough. But the Baggies would need Swansea to only manage one more point - and this is complicated further by the fact the Swans have Bottom Three bedfellows Southampton and Stoke still to play. 

Going into the permutations will make for too boring reading, but it does set up an exciting climax.

Squeaky bum time at the bottom…

Swansea seemed to have scrambled out of the relegation quicksand, with 18pts from ten matches (W5 D3 L2) at the start of the year. But six without a win now has them relying on a trip to Bournemouth and back-to-back six-pointers with Southampton and Stoke.

I can’t see them winning at Bournemouth, so they are then in a straight three-way for the drop. With all things pointing to a winner-stays-up v Stoke on the Final Day. 

Southampton could have a say, but they would need something from Everton and/or Man City. And Huddersfield could yet get dragged in, if they fail to get another point – in a scenario that could see Southampton AND Stoke stay up…

Stay with me on this…

Here goes… Huddersfield lose their last three. Standard. Southampton draw at Everton and beat Swansea. Stoke beat Palace and Swansea. Swansea fail to beat Bournemouth (and obviously lose to Southampton and Stoke, as covered). Right?

Southampton and Stoke both survive on 36pts. Huddersfield go down (on 35pts) with Swansea on (33/34pts) and West Brom (28-32pts). I think. 

Bet you wish you traded out on our 16/1 Southampton/ Stoke/ West Brom Relegation Treble now, eh?

I’ll meet you back here on Thursday for a gander at the penultimate weekend.

Matt Nesbitt


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Coupon Busters - Game Week 36

Saturday, April 28 2018

 

Fix up, look sharp. Dizzee Nesbitt’s the tipster in da corner…

You say Coupon and I’ll say Buster. 

Banker of the Week

  1. BTTS – Southampton v Bournemouth 7/10
  2. Man City to beat West Ham 3/10
  3. Man United to beat Arsenal 2/5
  4. Tottenham to beat Watford 1/6

Four ‘soft’ bankers that tot up to a measly 3/1 (or just under). Nothing to post on Facebook about, but better than overstretching and ending up with a torn up betting slip. 

Place it with Coral and you get a 10% Bonus on all winning accas of four of more...

City and United look stand out pics on a tricky coupon. City are back in the groove and chasing down records and United will enjoying bullying and Arsenal team with next Thursday on their minds. And wishing Arsene a big ‘va te faire foutre’. 

Only three of Bournemouth’s last 16 have failed to produce goals at both ends and this is surely the Saints last chance to show something. And Watford haven’t scored in their last nine away.

Get on. 

  • Bet: Treble at 3/1 (4.0)

  
Value of the Week

We snaffled a decent 5/2 (ish) return from our Draw Trixie last weekend and I’m of a mind to dip back in. With plenty of teams just a point or two from safety, I can see a few stalemates being played out this weekend. 

Burnley v Brighton and Huddersfield v Everton have got Draw written all over them. And Palace v Leicester and Southampton v Bournemouth also appeal. So let’s do this:  

  • Bet: Draw Trixie – Burnley v Brighton, Huddersfield v Everton & Southampton v Bournemouth.

 

Note: A Trixie is four bets (three doubles and a treble). So, for example, a £1 stake will cost £4 and pay a maximum return of £67.82if they all come in. Any two pays £10. 

I also think that the 7/1 on offer for Bournemouth to win at Southampton with goals at both ends is too big. So we’ll have a nibble on that too.

  • Bet: Bournemouth to Win & BTTS v Southampton at 7/1

 

TV Treble

Watch and earn with these three this weekend…
Stoke City (+3) v Liverpool 
HT/FT Man City/ Man City v West Ham 
Man United Win To Nil v Arsenal 

  • Bet: Treble at 5/1+ (6.3 available with Coral)

Collect your money.

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 36

Friday, April 27 2018

 

Punter, tipster, serial winner and considerate lover Matt Nesbitt is at it again...

Don’t fancy this weekend’s coupon much. Lots of variables. Some big European scene-stealers midweek, a couple of dead rubbers and a smattering of teams who’ll be going through the motions with their minds on more realistic fish to fry in the remaining weeks. So it’s a tricky week. 

At times like this I wish I’d paid more attention at school. But here goes…

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value out of the bookies. And any Long Shots are decent priced punts that have some statistical merit. 

All Scorecasts are priced up too – and can steer you towards Colossus’ £5k - £5 million jackpots  this weekend. And there’s £100 in free bets with Colossus is you sign up with this code: RAFMTS5UU4

Dilly dilly.

Saturday:
12.30pm Liverpool v Stoke City

Another lunchtime kick off against another (probably) relegation doomed struggler. And another massive distraction in midweek. Actually, the same distraction – but the second leg.
Jurgen is bound to leave a few out, but a ‘few’ can be replaced without much loss of quality. It is the attitude with which they go about things which counts here. Last week v West Brom it was bob on for 75 minutes. Then they wobbled and conceded twice. Ditto midweek. 
Stoke will be bang at it for the full 90 minutes, that’s a given. They have scrapped a couple of draws in the last two and perhaps deserved more.  Minus Salah (rested) and possibly Mane (knock) this has Coupon Stopper potential.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 9/1.
Smart Money: Liverpool Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 13/10.
Long Shot: HT/FT Draw/Liverpool at 3/1.
 
3pm Burnley v Brighton
There are only five teams between these two, but perhaps three divisions. Burnley are tucked up in one of their own in 7th place - Arsenal and the Top Six won’t be caught, but Everton and Mid-table are safely out of reach. Brighton are just a point or two away from the firm ground of Mid-table and at this stage of the season that will do. Like a marathon runner in the last mile, the finish time goes out of the window - it’s about getting over the line. Saying that, it’s Man United, City and Liverpool up next so a point would do nicely.
Draw written all over this.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Tap In: Burnley Draw No Bet at 8/15.
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 5/2.
   
3pm Crystal Palace v Leicester City
Palace have been one of the PL’s most consistent teams post-Roy Hodgson. Against the Bottom Half, they are bold and pick up points; against the Top Half, they are brave and get narrowly bet. In a nut shell. 
Leicester come bang in the middle of the Top Half/ Bottom Half ranking, but I can’t see leaving the Palace with the crown jewels. 
Take out the Top Four from Palace’s last 14 at home and they have only lost once (to Arsenal). And with Stoke and West Brom to play will be confident of A, avoiding any late relegation drama and B, perhaps even finishing the season six unbeaten.
Scorecast: 2-1 at 15/2.
Tap In: Palace Draw No Bet at 1/2.
Smart Money: Palace Win & BTTS at 3/1.
  
3pm Huddersfield Town v Everton
Huddersfield’s season peaked back in October (beating Man United) but this weekend is the tipping point. Another point will mean Southampton and Stoke would need two wins and a draw in order to draw level. And that’s unlikely. But here’s the thing… squeezing anything out of the Man City, Chelsea and Arsenal games they still have to play is equally unlikely. So it’s all on this one.
Everton aren’t winning any friends – at home or elsewhere – with their style of play. But they are starting to pick up points. Including four from their last two away trips.  
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Tap In: Everton Draw No Bet at Evens.
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 12/5.

3pm Newcastle United v West Brom
Two team in form. No, that’s not a typo. Hear me out… Newcastle are four from four at home and would be Top Six if the season had started ten matches ago. And if the season had started four weeks after that – that’s six matches ago, keep up – West Brom wouldn’t be rock bottom. In fact, they’d be a giddy 13th.
Whether it’s the impact of Darren Moore or the acceptance of their fate, Albion go to St James’ Park in better fettle than the last few months.
Newcastle have handled the Bottom Seven pretty well all season though, winning eight of their 13 matches (D4 L1) and dropped points would sting here.    
Scorecast: 2-0 at 7/1.
Smart Money: Newcastle Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 27/20.
Long Shot: Newcastle Win, Under 10.5 Corners & Under 35.5 Bookings at 4/1.

3pm Southampton v Bournemouth
Is this really a derby? Geographically perhaps, but surely it’s more flip-flops and donkey rides than bandanas and police horses. Sparky will hoping to ignite something in Southampton to avoid the ignominy of taking down two teams in one season. But just 3pts from their last eight matches – including five blanks in front of goal – doesn’t inspire much faith in these Saints. Something miraculous is required. 
Bournemouth have failed to register a goal or a point in their last two – okay, it was Liverpool and Man United – but only won of their last nine. And haven’t won a ‘derby’ in ten attempts. They are safe enough on 38pts but still have the chance to push this season from ‘average’ to ‘decent’. Maybe even ‘good’.
Scorecast: 2-3 at 40/1.
Tap In: Both Teams to Score at 7/10.
Long Shot: Bournemouth & BTTS at 7/1. 

5.30pm Swansea City v Chelsea
Another ugly one to call. Swansea looked to have performed the great escape, but instead of heading straight to the bar seem to be lingering dangerously close to the trap door. They might be relying on back-to-back six-pointers in the final week v Southampton and Stoke. Which could be great for Sky’s Final Day coverage, but less favourable for the nerves of their fans.
Chelsea have stirred from their winter hibernation, recording a hat-trick of wins for the first time since early December. Everyone wants to play in the Cup Final, after all. In the mood, they should have plenty here. But have looked flaky for a while. Like I say, an ugly one.  
Scorecast: 1-2 at 15/2.
Long Shot: Draw & BTTS at 5/1.

Sunday:
2.15pm West Ham v Man City

West Ham are another team that hasn’t quite scrambled up the relegation embankment to safety yet. Until they bag another couple of points, their security is based on the their rivals being further down a more slippery slope. And three home matches from the last four is less of an obvious advantage when two of them are from Manchester. 
City for their part look back in the groove of going anywhere and beating anyone. They still have record points and goals totals to shoot for. Which will define their season more than one pivotal week in April. 
Scorecast: 1-3 at 9/1.
Tap In: Man City Win at 3/10.

4.30pm Man United v Arsenal
Getting beaten 1-3 to 10-man United in December, despite 22 shots and 75% possession was a body blow that Arsenal might still not have fully recovered from. Revenge for that, plus four wins from five, plus Arsene’s last chance to get one over on the old enemy – Jose AND United – could inspire an upset. But coming in the middle of their all-egg-carrying Europa League semi-final favours the home side.
United have looked focussed since the West Brom mishap and will fancy this as a chance to nail down second place. And, of course, to administer one final boot into Arsene’s Wengers.
Scorecast: 2-0 at 6/1.
Tap In: Man United Win at 2/5. 
Smart Money: Man United Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 5/4.
Long Shot: HT/FT Draw/ Man United at 3/1.

Monday:
8pm Tottenham v Watford

Tottenham might be rocked by their FA Cup semi-final defeat. And the inevitable echoes of their issues v Top Six teams – four of the other five have beaten Spurs this season. But I daresay Watford would swap positions.
The Hornets’ sting is nothing more than a tickle away from Vicarage Road. They have scored just a single goal in their last nine away days (at Man City of all places) and taken just 6pts from a possible 39pts on the road all season. So any hangover Tottenham have from last weekend should probably be short-lived.  
Scorecast: 3-0 at 11/2.
Tap In: Tottenham to Win at 1/7. Pfft!
Smart Money: Tottenham Win to Nil at 7/10.

Coupon Busters to follow on Friday PM. Don’t touch that dial.

Matt Nesbitt


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What we learned from Game Week 35

Tuesday, April 24 2018

 

That Matt Nesbitt oddball is back again. This time banging on making you £25 a week or something...

Plenty of gravy to be mopped up again this weekend – 9.91pts if you’re counting. 

That’s over 110pts in five months, or 22-ish pts a month. So if you were betting, say, just £5 per point you’d be up about £110 a month. 

Figures – by the way – would have most tipping services wanking themselves silly over. Plus, they’d be charging you £20… £30… £40 a month.

But right here it’s all free. Yes, that’s £25 a week in your top pocket, from one BaDMan to another. 

De nada. 

Our Coupon Busters did the damage for us this weekend. Liverpool flirted with delivering us 7/4 and 7/1 winners, but decided on a late collapse instead. So they are the villains of the week.

GW 35

Strikerate

Pts Profit

Tap Ins

6 out of 8

1.38

Smart bets

2 out of 7

0.3

Long Shots

0 out of 3

-3.0

Scorecasts

1 out of 8

-2.0


Dishonorable mentions to Arsenal and Man City too, for each steering us a goal away from 10/1 and 7/1 windfalls. WhyIorta…!  

Coupon Busters

Pts Profit

Bankers

5.0

Value Picks

2.23

TV Treble

6.0

 

But our old pals Burnley were on hand to return a hat-trick of winners, totalling 12pts. I do like a team that punch their weight. Every week.  

Here’s what else we learned at the weekend…

I love the Champions League, me like…

Plenty of punters are wading into the 9/4 about Liverpool to lift the big one, thinking that history is on their side. But Roma fans are thinking precisely the same about their team, especially after pulling off the ‘impossible’ 3-0 reverse over Barcelona in the quarters. And they are trading at a much better value 8/1.

Personally, I’m looking at the other semi-final for the winning team. But that 8/1 about Roma could be a bit shorter after tonight’s match. Roma do their best work on the road. They have collected more points away in Serie A than at home – 36 v 31 – only losing the once (to Juventus). And have returned from 17 away days with sheets that don’t need cleaning.

Just saying.

You have to put your money where your big fat mouth is…

So where am I betting? 

For a bit of fun, I’ll be taking Liverpool to Win & Both Teams to Score at 11/5. And on Wednesday I’ll be taking Real Madrid to Win & Cristiano Ronaldo to Score at 10/3.

For two reasons. One, I fancy both. And second both are enhanced prices on offer from Coral And that’s a nice little combo to have going on before stepping into the com-bet zone.

If you haven’t got a Coral account, get on board today and you’ll get bonus £30 in Free Bets for your trouble…

It looks all done and dusted domestically…

The climax of the Champions League is looking more exciting than the Premier League damp squib. City have been Champions-in-waiting since Christmas, perhaps even two week previous, when they beat United at Old Trafford. Their narky neighbours will be second though, having 3pts to play with over Liverpool and Tottenham. Both of whom are confirmed at the Top Four table. 

Chelsea are untouchably fifth. Likewise Arsenal in sixth. Oh, and Burnley seventh. 

Leaving the ten between Everton (8th) and Swansea (17th) four more matches to avoid injury before they hit the beaches and bars of Dubai. Unless they dragged to Russia, of course.

Southampton, Stoke and even West Brom have shown a flicker of a pulse in recent weeks – and Swansea play them both before the curtain comes down. So - technically, at least - there is a sliver of a chance that the Final Day might be worth watching. 

But I wouldn’t be on it.  

Landing in your laps this week…

Neverless, I’ll be ploughing through the dead-rubbers to bring you another set of winning picks. Shall we say Thursday?  

Chocolate. 

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier INDEX

Saturday, April 21 2018

       

           

Back to my roots. Sergio Aguero is the latest addition to my INDEX portfolio. The Argentine had knee surgery on Tuesday to repair damaged cartilage and there were conflicting reports on his expected length of absence initiating a sharp price drop.

     

Firstly, national team doctor Homero D'Agostino raised concerns: "I imagine that he will not arrive 100 percent fit with the limited time that is left before the World Cup.” However, his father was quick to allay growing fears by confirming the operation “went fine” and that Aguero should be training again in around ten days.

Four years ago, I was asked to comment on Luis Suarez and Arturo Vidal who underwent similar procedures, both of whom recovered in a little over a month prior to the finals in Brazil. And City boss Pep Guardiola reinforced the notion that Aguero would be okay in Fridays press conference: “It’s four or five weeks. We will try and get him ready for the World Cup. He’s in Barcelona now. The first part of his rehabilitation.”

     

Aguero has 60 days and I fully expect the striker to be ready for the opener versus Iceland. Argentina didn’t pull up any trees during their qualifying campaign, although La Albiceleste should go deep in the tournament which will bode well for those holding FUTURES in the striker.


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Coupon Busters - Game Week 35

Friday, April 20 2018

 

There's a Matt Nesbitt vibe in the area. Lock up your doubters...

Sunny as fuck outside. Get yourself in a dark, dank bookies with these puppies…

Banker of the Week

  1. Palace (+1) Handicap  v Watford 
  2. Arsenal to beat West Ham 
  3. Man City Half-time/ Full-time 
  4. Chelsea to beat Southampton

Four ‘soft’ bankers this weekend which add up to a tidy 4/1 payout. Which is preferable to trying to pick out the strongest three for a smidgeon over 2/1. 
 
Place it with Coral and you get a 10% Bonus on all winning accas of four of more...

Chelsea’s season depends on the FA Cup and if they are anything like, they should have way too much for Saints. Arsenal are formidable at home and have a Europa League semi-final to sharpen up for. Seeing off Swansea by half-time should be nothing more than a cakewalk for the new Champs and I fancy Palace can get at least a draw at Watford.

So there you have it. Get on. 

  • Bet: Fourfold at 4/1 (5.0)

  
Value of the Week

Pfft! Slim pickings this weekend…

But form and agenda lead me to thinking ‘Draw’ in Watford v Palace, Stoke v Burnley and Everton v Newcastle. 

Neither Watford, Palace, Everton or Newcastle would turn their nose up at a point. And I’m not sure Stoke have quite got enough to get the better of a Burnley side who will be stung by their midweek defeat.

But Draws are dicey customers, so we’ll build in a bit of insurance with a Trixie.

  • Bet: Draw Trixie - Watford v Palace, Stoke v Burnley & Everton v Newcastle

Note: A Trixie is four bets (three doubles and a treble). So, for example, a £1 stake will cost £4 and pay a maximum return of £61.78 if they all come in. Any two pays £10.23. 

 

And if you’re feeling fruity, you could crank it up the gigawatts and place the same bet adding Both Teams to Score.

  • Bet: Draw & BTTS Trixie - Watford v Palace, Stoke v Burnley & Everton v Newcastle

A £1 stake will again cost £4 but pay a maximum return of £144.56 if they all come in. Any two pays £19.12. 

 

TV Treble

Watch and earn with these three this weekend…

  1. Man United v Tottenham – First Half Draw
  2. Man City Half-time/ Full-time v Swansea
  3. Everton v Newcastle – First Half Draw

I’m doing things by half this weekend. You knowz I got jokez.

  • Bet: Treble at 5/1+ (6.0)

Collect your money.

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 35

Thursday, April 19 2018

 

Sherrif Matt Nesbitt is riding into town again to sort the good from the bad and the ugly in this weekend's coupon...

A short, but still sharp offering this week. Eight matches between Thursday and Monday to pick the low hanging fruit from.

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value out of the bookies. And any Long Shots are decent priced punts that have some statistical merit. 

All Scorecasts are priced up too – and can steer you towards Colossus’ £5k - £5 million jackpots this weekend. And there’s £100 in free bets with Colossus is you sign up with this code: RAFMTS5UU4

Feeling hot hot hot!

Thursday:
7.45pm Burnley v Chelsea

When Burnley opened the season by beating Chelsea not many would’ve predicted there would be just two places and 8pts between them at this stage of the season. And after tonight it could be one place and 5pts. Burnley are five from five in the PL and Chelsea just one from four on the road, making a mockery of the bookies pricing – 7/2 Home Win, 10/11 Away. 
It should be said that four of Burnley’s winning streak have been by a single goal margin – as have 12 of their 14 wins this season – and the five matches v the Top Six so far have yielded just a single point.  But I’m going with the value:
Scorecast: 1-1 at 11/2.
Tap In: Burnley (+2) Handicap at 2/7.
Smart Money: Burnley Double Chance at 20/23.
Long Shot: Burnley Win & BTTS at 15/2.

7.45pm Leicester City v Southampton
Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory to Chelsea at the weekend will have been a body blow to the Saints. They have the chance to put it right of course, at Wembley on Sunday. But that is another reason I can’t see anything for them here. Oh, and here’s a third – 2pts from a possible 24pts away to Top Half teams so far.
There are signs that Leicester’s season has slowed to a jog, but they have been efficient v the Bottom Half. Just the two defeats from 17 (W7 D8), although they have drawn at home against the other three Bottom Four teams. 
Scorecast: 2-0 at 11/1.
Tap In: Leicester Win at 5/4.
Smart Money: Leicester Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 21/10.

Saturday:
12.30pm West Brom v Liverpool

Now then, what do we have here? West Brom will be buzzing off their win at Man United and Liverpool twitching at the prospect of their Champions League semi-final on Tuesday. Plus, Albion have won and drawn at Anfield already this season. So this has all the ingredients for an upset, right? 
Probably not. Although the Baggies look a different animal under Darren Moore, Klopp has gone strong and gone home with the points in most pre-CL matches so far. There might be a tweak here and there, but they should be a goal better than Albion’s best efforts. Even with the brakes on.
Scorecast: 1-2 at 7/1.
Tap In: Liverpool to win at 8/15.
Smart Money: Liverpool Win to Nil at 7/4.
 
3pm Watford v Crystal Palace
Only 3pts separates the two teams, but Watford are north of that 35pt marker – the ‘magic’ 40pts for survival is so last year, dahling - so in less of a flap than they might otherwise be after taking just a single point from their last five. 
Beating Brighton last week just about edged Palace out of the shadow cast by relegation, but need another win before they dare put their Premier League towels on their sun beds again. If it doesn’t come here, they will fancy there are points to be had v Leicester, Stoke and West Brom before the end of the season. 
Scorecast: 1-1 at 11/2.
Tap In: Palace (+1) Handicap at 4/9.
Smart Money: Draw & BTTS at 13/4.
   
Sunday:
1.30pm Arsenal v West Ham 

Arsenal will be hoping that West Ham will think their 5pt haul from their last three will be enough to preserve their PL status. Or at least be targeting the required points from their three remaining home matches.  
It’s not that Arsenal haven’t be good at home this season, because they have. Very good, in fact. Better than Liverpool, Tottenham, Chelsea and just a goal shy of matching Man United’s numbers. But you get the feeling it’s all about the Europa League now – and Atletico are in town on Thursday. 
Burnley’s run of five wins has taken them to within 2pts in the PL and Arsene will be keenly aware of Dyche Dyche Baby’s breath on his neck (which I imagine is hot and smalls like a lit match).  So I’ll take Arsenal to do enough here. 
Scorecast: 3-1 at 10/1.
Tap In: Arsenal Win at 8/15. 
Smart Money: Arsenal Win & BTTS at 9/5.
      
1.30pm Stoke City v Burnley
Paul Lambert stresses that he can’t fault the effort of his players, but has stopped short of praising them. Because he must know that shabby points spilled at home to Watford, Brighton and away to Southampton and West Ham has cost him the chance to perform a rescue mission. And a reputation for that means a job for life in the Premier League. 
Burnley have won their last three on the road, which has taken them to the brink of the Europa League (fans all over Europe must be rubbing their hands at the prospect of a tapping ‘Turf Moor’ into their SatNavs…). Can’t see Sean leaving empty handed here.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Tap In: Double Chance – Burnley or Draw at 6/10. 
Smart Money: Draw & BTTS at 7/2. 
Long Shot: Burnley Win 2-1 at 11/1.

4.30pm Man City v Swansea
Taking the field as Champions will no doubt give Man City a sense of pride, freedom and they want to put on a show. Which is bad news for Swansea. And here’s some more…
City have only dropped 4pts at home all season. And three of those were to Man United, who could’ve been four or five down at half-time. The other was to Everton in GW 2.
On a positive tip for the visitors, they will be able to swap shirts with the Champions. Oh and finish the season with home matches to two all but condemned teams, Stoke and Southampton. Both of whom are likely to be out of reach of Swansea’s 33pts total by then.  
Scorecast: 4-0 at 7/1.
Tap In: Half-time/ Full-time – Man City/ Man City at 8/15.
Long Shot: Man City Win & Under 2.5 Goals at 27/10.

Monday:
8pm Everton v Newcastle United

The season can’t be over quick enough for Everton fans. The false hope of a fortune spent on new talent, the returning Rooney and blossoming academy has long been replaced with Big Sam, boredom and bitter fans at the ballot box. And Liverpool could yet win the Champions League. You’ve got to feel for the Toffees. 
Not being beaten by their city rivals is likely to be the highpoint, but they do have the chance to beat a Top Half team – for just the second time – on Monday night. 
Newcastle arrive in fine fettle, winning their last four and anything here will see them leapfrog their hosts.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Tap In: First-half Results – Draw at Evens.
Smart Money: Draw & BTTS at 7/2.

All the prices quoted are from Coral and if you open a new account today you’ll get £20 in free bets…

I’ll be back around high noon Friday with some Coupon Busters based on the six weekend fixtures.

Yeah?

Matt Nesbitt


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What we learned from Game Week 34

Tuesday, April 17 2018

 

Bit of a Curate’s Egg this weekend. (Note: A teacher at school – Miss Norman – said that about me once and I only learned what it actually meant this week. #rebel).

Some good bits, some bad bits. 

On the face of it, 35pts profit is a tidy weekend’s business. But a minus from both Tap In and Smart Bets categories is neither big nor clever – one from seven Smart Bets is shite, in fact.

Nailing 15pts from Long Shots over the last two weekends is a good sign though.

GW 34

Strikerate

Pts Profit

Tap Ins

5 out of 8

-0.32

Smart bets

1 out of 7

-2.60

Long Shots

2 out of 3

11.0

Scorecasts

3 out of 10

18.0


Huddersfield’s last minute winner probably made it a good night down the high street, but robbed us of 8pts of profit. So Tom Ince is this week’s rotter. 

Things were looking rosy in the Monday night match too, until that lanky get Peter Crouch scored for Stoke. Luckily that lanky get Andy Carroll got us a bit back.  

Coupon Busters

Pts Profit

Bankers

-1.0

Value Picks

4.0

TV Treble

6.0

 

Burnley were once again stars of the show, delivering a second Scorecast in the last three weeks. So Dyche Dyche baby is our hero. 

Here’s what else we learned at the weekend…

Some things are all too predictable…

Not sure if you saw the social media posts last Friday morning - circa 9am - which showed from Champions League semi-finalist Roma’s website advertising tickets for their first leg away at Liverpool. 

Nothing exceptional about that, I hear you say. Except the draw didn’t take place until 12 noon.  

Could’ve been a coincidence, of course. Filler copy on a test page. Wrong type of leaves on the line. A puff of smoke from behind the picket fence…  

You might also have noticed that Mo Salah’s odds have shrunk from around 2/1 to 1/3 since the guys at the FA have had their bet, er, I mean… concluded the voting procedure. 

You can’t go around making wild accusations without basis…

So, I’ll tell you a little true story…

A few years ago I was running a tipping service with a guy who worked under the moniker ‘Mr X’. He was an ex-odds Ladbrokes compiler, NFL handicapper and all round punting legend (who is no longer with us, so I’ll respect his anonymity). 

He had contacts everywhere – including one in an auditing company somewhere in the North West that dealt with all the voting for TV shows, such as I’m A Celebrity..., Pop Idol, then X-Factor and the like. 

In the mid-00s this company also took over the handling of PFA Player of the Year votes too. Which, as you can imagine was a lucrative – if short-lived – benefit for me and the X man – and our subscribers. 

(In fact, backing Ryan Giggs to win the 2009 Player of the Year was the bet that got my accounts closed with Hills and Bet £3.65 and massively limited elsewhere. But it did pay the deposit for my house.)  

Who can you trust? Sweet FA…

But the point of the story is this…

During phone conversations with our man on the inside, it emerged that Mr X wasn’t the only one keeping tabs on how the voting was going with a view to piling in. A fairly high-profile FA administrator – whose name you would recognise, but I’ll keep to myself rather than risk landing myself and Ben in a legal barrel of thumbs – was also a regular caller. So much so that our man warned us away from using the FA guy’s particular bookmaker (Sky Bet) for our own bets.  

Oh and just in case you were wondering – the latest literature on the FA’s blanket ban on betting for all players and associated club employees warns of six-figure fines and bans of up to five years.   

Which is arguably less believable than my yarn. But both are true. 

What you can bet on this week…

The fixtures have gone a bit skew-whiff this week, with matches every day from Wednesday to Monday. So I’ll be delivering an eight-match Preview on Thursday, then on Friday I’ll post some Coupon Busters based on the six weekend matches (Saturday – Monday).

Fair enough? 
 

Matt Nesbitt

 


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Coupon Busters - Game Week 34

Friday, April 13 2018

 

Friday 13th?! Pfft! Matt Nesbitt scoffs at superstition. Thinks it's bad luck...

This lunchtime's episode of Undercover Boss USA brought a tear to my eye. So I'd like to do something for you. Go a Coupon Busting with this little lot...

Banker of the Week

  1. Man United to beat West Brom
  2. Bournemouth (+3) Handicap v Liverpool
  3. Swansea Win or Draw – Double Chance
  4. Newcastle Win or Draw – Double Chance at 10/3 (4.33)

Not many nailed-on in this weekend’s coupon, so we’ve had to stretch to a four-fold for a satisfactory return. But place it with Coral and you get a 10% Bonus on all winning accas of four of more...

United dropping points at home to West Brom following the Houdini act at Man City would be akin to… I dunno… giving Ronaldo an open goal after clawing back a 0-3 deficit in the Bernabeu, or something. Could never happen.

Bournemouth (+3) are better value than the Liverpool Win and Swansea and Newcastle are the PL’s form teams at home. Get on.

  • Bet: Four-fold Acca at 10/3 (4.33)  

 

Value of the Week

We can cash in on the bookies ongoing distrust of unfashionable Burnley. Despite four wins on the spin, being 5th in the form table over the last month and facing a Leicester team with just 5pts from a possible 24 away to Top Half teams… you’ll still get odds against for the Home Win.

I’m going to make it one loader and take the Burnley Win & Both Teams to Score that’s paid off in three of the last four at an unmissable 5/1.

  • Bet: Burnley & BTTS at 5/1.

I also like the look of Tottenham at the moment. They look strong, fit and focussed. Unlike Saturday’s visitors City. Who look at bit jaded, dazed and confused. They have always got goals in them, especially on those wide open space at Wembley but I fancy Spurs will over run them in the last half hour. 

  • Bet: Half-time/ Full-time Draw/ Tottenham at 11/2 (6.5)

 

TV Treble

Watch and earn with these three this weekend…

  1. Liverpool Win 
  2. Tottenham v Man City BTTS
  3. Newcastle Win

Two tap ins should put us in a great position for Sunday’s 1.30pm kick off. That’ll take care of your bar bill. 

  • Bet: Treble at 5/1 (6.0)

I suppose the Grand National winner now, don’t you? Eyes roll. 

My men on the inside – who know more about racing than me – are recommending Blaklion and Anibale Fly to win. With Gas Line Boy as an Each Way outsider.
Offer 

Place it with Coral and you’ll get £5 in free bets…

Collect,

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 34

Thursday, April 12 2018

 

Matt Nesbitt has had his crystal balls out again to see where the smart money is going this weekend...

The prospect of the quaint old Premier League might seem dull compared to the drama of the Champions League this week. Not least for Michael Oliver – he’s got West Ham v Stoke on Monday night.

Still, there’s money to be made. So let’s make some, shall we?

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value out of the bookies. And any Long Shots are decent priced punts that have some statistical merit. 

All Scorecasts are priced up too – and can steer you towards Colossus’ £5k - £5 million jackpots   this weekend. And there’s £100 in free bets with  Colossus is you sign up with this code: RAFMTS5UU4

Channel your inner Cristiano and let’s drill in into the top bin, eh?

Saturday:
12.30pm Southampton v Chelsea

Three defeats on the spin – and just 2pts from the two before that – doesn’t give you any evidence that Southampton can A, get something here, or B, survive the drop. But a win from their game in hand drags Palace, Huddersfield and Swansea back into spitting distance. And this might just be the best time to play Chelsea for a dogs’ life.
Just 7pts from a possible 24pts including three away losses on the spin makes you wonder about Chelsea’s appetite. They haven’t kept a clean sheet in that eight match spell either. It’s now or never for Saints, but I’m not sure either is in any shape to win this.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 11/2.
Tap In: Chelsea Draw No Bet at 4/11.
 
3pm Burnley v Leicester City
The Manager of the Year needle has swung back toward Sean Dyche in the last couple of weeks, following Pep’s Man City wobble. Burnley’s return to winning ways – four on the spin now – has just about guaranteed a 7th place finish. Unless they lose to 8th place Leicester, of course. 
The Foxes have got a taste for away days recording back-to-back wins at West Brom (no great shakes) and Brighton (only equalled by Chelsea, Liverpool and City this season) before losing at home last weekend. Two honest teams who punch their weight, but I fancy Burnley might get a points decision in this one. And they are still the PL’s value team.    
Scorecast: 2-1 at 10/1.
Tap In: Burnley Draw No Bet at 4/5.
Long Shot: Burnley Win & BTTS at 5/1. 

3pm Crystal Palace v Brighton
Jeepers, the outcome of the Eagles v the Seagulls could set the cat among the pigeons. A home win drags Brighton to within 1pt. An away win probably has Brighton clambering up the embankment for good and pushes Palace back within reach of Southampton and perhaps even Stoke. A draw and I say all this again next week.
Palace’s form hasn’t been bad, but one-goal defeats to four of the Top Five and a late slip at Bournemouth last week has translated into just 4pts from the last six matches. Brighton don’t travel with much threat – their away form would have them in the Bottom Three – but neither can afford a slip here.  
Scorecast: 1-1 at 11/2.
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 27/10.
  
3pm Huddersfield Town v Watford
Of all the teams paddling in the relegation pond, Huddersfield look the most likely to miss their step and slip under the surface.  They have spurned chances to build up a buffer v bedfellows Swansea, Palace and Brighton and it gets ugly from here on in. After Watford and Everton at home it’s trips to City and Chelsea. And if they are not a bloated corpse by them, a final day visit from Arsenal should just about do it. 4pts should do it – which means at least a draw here.
They will be cheered to learn that Watford have scored just twice in their last ten on the road. But it’s the home team that have more to lose. 
Scorecast: 0-0 at 7/1.
Smart Money: Watford Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 12/5.

3pm Swansea City v Everton
Swansea are the division’s form team at home, winning their last four. That run looked like lifting them out of trouble, but failing to win at Huddersfield and West Brom means they are still within reach of at least three of the five teams below them.
Everton have only won one of their last seven away from Goodison – losing the other six – but will be buoyed by share of the spoils in the Merseyside derby. Although they can’t afford to wait until the 75th minute before crossing the half-way line at Swansea. Can’t see either party risking 1pt for 3pts if they get to the dying embers of this match level. 
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Tap In: Double Chance - Swansea or Draw at 4/11.
Smart Money: Draw & BTTS at 17/5.

5.30pm Liverpool v Bournemouth
It’s all about the Champions League for Liverpool now. Chelsea and Arsenal are at least 10pts off being a threat to a Top Four finish, so keeping the front four as fab as possible from here on in is the priority for Jurgen. That means points will no doubt be dropped here and there – and this could be one of them.
Bournemouth are a kind of Liverpool-lite – playing a similarly open, expansive ‘you get three, we’ll get four’ type of football. Except that more often than not, it’s ‘you get three, we’ll get one’. But this will be a good watch.   
Scorecast: 2-1 at 8/1.
Tap In: Bournemouth (+3) Handicap at 4/9. 
Smart Money: Liverpool Win & BTTS at 8/5. 

7.45pm Tottenham v Man City
Poor old Pep. This is the last fixture City needed after a calamitous week, conceding eight goals to their biggest rivals – three to their closest in geography, the other five to their closest in swagger. 
Tottenham have hit their groove, winning their last six in the Premier League. In fact only Juventus have beaten Spurs since City did way back in December (22 games ago). But this meeting has a very different vibe to it.
Expect a bit of muscle-flexing from Tottenham, while City probably could do with resting theirs. They can’t win the league here – that will wait until West Ham away. That wasn’t in the script. 
Scorecast: 3-1 at 18/1.
Tap In: Double Chance - Tottenham Win or Draw at 1/2.
Smart Money: Tottenham Win & BTTS at 10/3.

Sunday: 
1.30pm Newcastle United v Arsenal

The bookmakers seem more bewitched by Arsenal’s run of five home wins than they do Newcastle’s run of three. Making Arsenal favourites for this makes it the outstanding Coupon Buster of the week. The thing is, Arsenal have been good – excellent, in fact – at home all season. Only the Manchester pair have been better. But away from the Emirates it is a different story. A Bottom Half story. A worse than Palace story. A 1pt better than Southampton and Huddersfield story. And Newcastle have beaten both of those in the last week, so don’t expect a happy ending to that story here – especially after a long Moscow trip.
Scorecast: 2-1 at 10/1.
Tap In: Double Chance - Newcastle or Draw at 8/11.
Long Shot: Newcastle Win & BTTS at 5/1.

4pm Man United v West Brom 
It’s difficult to know whether United’s second half heroics at City last week was more a measure of them, or City. What we do know is they are well capable of grinding out To Nil wins over teams outside the Top Six – it’s nine from 11 so far. And that only City have been more efficient at home this season. 
West Brom rallied under new (erstwhile) boss Darren Moore last weekend, but don’t look capable of adding to the 3pts gathered from their last ten away trips. Although two of those points were accrued at Tottenham and Liverpool. Funny old game.  
Scorecast: 2-0 at 9/2.
Tap In: Man United to Win at 1/5.
Smart Money: Man United/ Man United HT/ FT at 8/11.

Monday:
8pm West Ham v Stoke City

Despite the five places and 7pts between the teams, this still qualifies as a six-pointer. If West Ham win they will just about secure their PL status and Stoke’s Championship status next term. If Stoke win, they drag a handful of teams back in the pit – and West Ham’s run-in (which includes three of the Top Six) suddenly looks significantly more treacherous. 
In their favour, the Hammers have taken points from five of their last six at home (11 in total). And Stoke have lost four of their last six away (D2) and only managed maximum points once on the road all season. Hard to make a case.    
Scorecast: 2-0 at 8/1.
Tap In: West Ham Draw No Bet at 4/9.
Smart Money: West Ham & Under 3.5 Goals at 13/8.
Long Shot: Draw/ West Ham at 4/1.

What's that, you say...? You want my winner for the Grand National too...

Aww go on then. I'll include it in my Coupon Busters around midday tomorrow.

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier Injury INDEX

Wednesday, April 11 2018

       

                  

Last month [March 30], Frenkie de Jong became one of several medium to long-term holds which will help structure the mainstay of my INDEX portfolio heading into 2019 and beyond. The Ajax midfielder is already showing promise and I’m sitting on a 17% ROI with 250 futures invested.

 

Next up, is Giovanni Simeone [son of Atletico manager Diego], a 22-year-old striker playing for Italian club Fiorentina. Having announced his Serie A arrival in 2016/17 at Genoa, La Viola quickly snapped up the young Argentine for €15 million after scoring 12-goals in his debut season. And the short move to the north west of Italy’s Liguria region has done nothing to quell his goal scoring.

                

Simeone once again tops his clubs goal charts, 10 [three assists] from his thirty league starts [which includes a strike against Barca conquerors, Roma, at the Olimpico Stadium last weekend]. Despite a recent 8 per cent rise, I see a lot of upside here for a relatively low buy-in.

 


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What we learned from Game Week 33

Monday, April 9 2018

 

No bicep kissing this weekend. We returned a measly 1.4pts profit and I’ve spent the weekend self-harming, because it should’ve been more. But I’ll get on to that…

A tidy four out of five Tap Ins nudged us in front, but shambolic seven duck eggs from nice (not very) Smart Bets dug us a 4.6pts hole, which we only just scrambled out of thanks to a Long Shot and a Scorecast hitting the spot. 

 

GW 33

Strikerate

Pts Profit

Tap Ins

4 out of 5

1.16

Smart bets

2 out of 9

-4.60

Long Shots

1 out of 3

4.50

Scorecasts

1 out of 10

2.0


The Jekyll and Hyde hero of the weekend was Chris Smalling. The United centre back was chiefly responsible for City taking a two-goal lead, but then volleyed the unlikely winner to deliver our 13/2 Man Utd Win & BTTS Long Shot.  

Coupon Busters

Pts Profit

Bankers

0.6

Value Picks

-1.0

TV Treble

-1.0

 

Villain of the week was Brighton’s Steve Duffy, whose through ball for Huddersfield’s Steve Mounie was gratefully accepted – taking down our 5/1 1-0 Scorecast AND the 11/4 Treble featured in our Coupon Busters.    

But the real guilty party this weekend was the clown that writes this post (whoever that is).

Here’s what else we learned at the weekend…

Tip like you’ve got a set…

Two apologies to make. First, my Everton v Liverpool tips were shit. Not because I got it wrong, my crime was worse. I called it correctly, but failed to draw any profit from it. Which comes from either being an idiot, or failing to put your pods on the chopping block. Which is what happened.

I withdrew two bets at the last minute. The Everton v Liverpool Draw was one and Chelsea v West Ham Draw & BTTS the other, changing it to a Chelsea win. Now, this might sound like after-timing to make myself a big time Charlie, but it isn’t. 

I’m naming and shaming myself because the motivation for withdrawing the two was because it would’ve meant too many draws – and I was concerned it might look I was sitting on the fence. So I sat on the fence. What a dickhead.  

It pays to be optimistic… 

Like most people, I could only see one outcome at half-time at the Etihad on Saturday. It was just a case of how cruel City were feeling and how many they’d get. I’d certainly given up on the Man United Win & BTTS and the 50/1 available in-play on a United Win at Halt-time prompted little more than a smirk in my house. But not everyone gave it up…

As you probably know, I also work for the enemy – first the bookies close your accounts, then they want you to work for them. And after a while you say ‘yes’. So I now write, consult and consort from the dark side. (I’m not supposed to say who, so ignore the two bookmakers – who have recently merged – in the next sentence. Mum’s the word). 

I happen to know that fourteen brave punters snapped up the 50/1 on offer on Man United to Win at half-time at City across the Coral and Ladbrokes brands. The biggest bet was just a fiver, but even so I wish I’d been watching the match in the same pub as him on Saturday. 

Even the very best get it wrong…

In the last week the wheels have - if not come off Man City’s season, they have certainly buckled. Pep got his selection wrong at Man City - yeah, I said it! – but the first and third goals were littered with shoddy mistakes.And although Man United’s second half response was very good – giving their fans a glimpse of what they could have been watching this season! – City were all over the place at the back.  

Whether they have taken their foot off the gas… or we have simply not noticed their frailties before because their front six have been so good this season… or maybe Kompany and Otamendi are too flat-footed and stiff to be play together… I dunno. But I know this…

I’m wading into the 7/5 available on Man City to Win & Both Teams to Score on Tuesday night.   

We cannot lose on our 16/1 relegation treble…

Defeats for Stoke and Southampton put another nail in their coffins (West Brom’s is already being lowered into the soil). The 16/1 West Brom/ Stoke/ Southampton Relegation Treble recommended on February 27th post is now down to 13/10, so if you’re nervous you could easily spend a few points of your profit protecting your bet.

Either by trading your position on Betfair, or by backing the West Brom/ Stoke/ Huddersfield Treble at 2/1 for insurance. I can’t see Southampton getting out of it personally, but if they do Huddersfield look the most vulnerable of the pack hovering about the chasm.

I’m sitting tight, but the way. I’ve already cost money this week by getting the jitters.

Thursday, yeah?

Matt Nesbitt


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Coupon Busters - Game Week 33

Saturday, April 7 2018

 

Stop! It's Matt Nesbitt time. He wants to bust your coupons...

Greetings pop pickers. 

This is how things look from BaDMan Towers this weekend.

Banker of the Week

It’s not a weekend for wading in, folks. Derby days, dead rubbers and a couple of six-pointers make nailed-on bankers thin on the ground. But there are a couple of bets worthy of a cocky strut up to the counter…

First up, Bournemouth have the dirtiest sheets in the Premier League - just one has remained clean in their last 13 matches. But they are handy in front of goal, so I can see another Both Teams To Score when they host a Palace in reasonable form and hungry for a result.

To accompany that we’ll oppose West Brom at home to Swansea. Not my bravest ever stance, but at 6/10 it’s all about the value.

  • Bet: Double – Bournemouth v Palace BTTS & Swansea Double Chance v WBA at 8/5 (2.6)

There are a couple of stone-wallers this weekend. Arsenal are as bankable as anyone outside of the Manchester teams at home and should – no, will beat Southampton

Elsewhere, their North London nemeses Tottenham have the steel and momentum to do it on a windy afternoon at Stoke. And Brighton’s slip last weekend and their visitors this (Huddersfield) will only strengthen their resolve to clamber out of the relegation pit, once and for all.

Now, I’ll level with you… The upset potential of Stoke and/ or Huddersfield playing above themselves and slashing all over our chips has not gone un-noticed, or un-pondered. But picking between the two would be the toss of a coin, so let’s just chuck them all in shall we? (Half your stakes if you want to be a wuss about it).  

  • Bet: Treble – Brighton, Tottenham and Arsenal all to win at 11/4 (3.75) 

  
Value of the Week

Whisper it on Merseyside, or anywhere else they still cling to the belief that the interests of fans are anything more than a footnote in a clubs’ pursuit of commercial opportunity. But Liverpool have got bigger fish to fry than at Goodison Park on Saturday lunchtime.

Jurgen started laying the groundwork to excuse a weakened team in his post-match interview on Wednesday. Plus, they’ve got a 10pt qualification cushion between them and 5th place Chelsea so getting a result at Everton is less important than coming out of it with a clean bill of health.

Big Sam, meanwhile, will have been feeding his players raw meat all week long. And will recognise the chance to sugar coat a pretty dire reign by plotting the defeat of one of the best four teams in Europe. Probably. 

So I propose a value bet on Everton to Win. You’ll get 3/1, perhaps a smidgeon more. But can squeeze that price up a bit taking the Everton Win & Under 3.5 Goals. If Liverpool score twice, I can’t see Everton getting three – so all bets are off. But this covers a 1-0 and 2-1 and is on offer at 21/5 with Coral.    

  • Bet: Everton Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 21/5.

TV Treble

Watch and earn with these three this weekend…
Everton (+2) v Liverpool 
Man United (+2) v Man City 
Arsenal Win to Nil 

  • Bet: Treble at 4/1

Offer 

All the odds quoted are from  Coral. If you haven’t got an account, sign up here and get £20 in free bets…

Collect your money.

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 33

Friday, April 6 2018

 

That Matt Nesbitt is relentless. Here he is again with a look at the Premier League coupon...

Not superstitious are you? 

‘Cos if you are, I’m about to put the kybosh on this week’s tips. Ready? Here goes…

We’ve taken 82.39pts profit from the last four weekends. Including Coupon Busters, that is – which will be along later on. 

So we’re deep in the cleavage of a hot streak, or due a stumble. You decide.

Still with me? 

Wise move, Badman. Wise move.

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value out of the bookies. And any Long Shots are decent priced punts that have some statistical merit. 

All Scorecasts are priced up too – and can steer you towards Colossus’ £5k - £5 million jackpots   this weekend. And there’s £100 in free bets with Colossus is you sign up with this code: RAFMTS5UU4

You’re welcome.

Saturday:
12.30pm Everton v Liverpool

Hmm. You can’t help thinking that the context of this match will play a part. With Liverpool 90 minutes into a season-defining Champions League tussle with Man City if this was anyone but the bluenoses, a few big hitters would be left in storage for this one. But it isn’t. And the arch spoiler Big Sam will be rubbing his hands at the prospect of putting a bit of gloss on a very forgettable reign/ season so far. 
Just 3pts from a possible 39pts v Top Seven teams doesn’t look good on paper. But the blue side of Liverpool will be looking forward to this more than the red side - especially the bus ride in. I reckon it could be 4pts from 42pts come 2.30pm.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 6/1.
Long Shot: Liverpool win from behind at 9/1.
 
3pm Bournemouth v Crystal Palace
Bournemouth’s total football approach makes them the PL’s great entertainers. In a mediocre mid-table kinda way. They certainly don’t care much for clean sheets – it’s just one in 13 – and they like a late goal; their last six matches have seen goals in the final minute. Three for, three against. Just three defeats (from 17) v Bottom Half teams this season, but not enough wins (W6 D8) has meant they have only scratched the surface of the Top Half.
Five defeats from the last six has seen Palace slip back to the precipice, but decent performances, late goals from good opposition make me think they might be okay. And could get something here.
Scorecast: 2-2 at 11/1.
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 4/6.
Smart Money: Bournemouth & BTTS at 17/5.
   
3pm Brighton v Huddersfield Town
Brighton’s home defeat to Leicester last week put a bit of a blot on a tidy run of form (W3 D2 L1) that had them looking upwards, rather than at the scrum below. And they were a bit unlucky, to be fair – that missed penalty will have ruined Glenn Murray’s week. They still have a 3pt advantage over their visitors and a game in hand, but will see this six-pointer as a chance to place a boot on Huddersfield’s collective head and scramble to safety once and for all. 
The terrible Terriers haven’t scored since their West Brom win four games ago. And that’s been their touble all season.   
Scorecast: 1-0 at 5/1.
Tap in: Brighton Draw No Bet at 1/3.
Smart Money: Brighton Win & Under 2.5 Goals at 5/2.
  
3pm Leicester City v Newcastle United
Two teams in reasonable form – just one defeat in their last 13 between them. Both teams will have hoped for better this season, but have probably just about punched their weight. Newcastle have only lost three of 16 matches to Bottom Half teams (W8 D5) and Leicester just the two (W8 D6). 
Newcastle will carry more motivation into the match, thinking a win will secure another Premier League stint next term. But I suspect they wouldn’t turn their nose up at a draw. One or two in Leicester’s ranks might already being thinking about their holidays. 
Scorecast: 1-1 at 8/1.
Tap in: Leicester Draw No Bet at 2/5.
Smart Money: Leicester & BTTS at 16/5.

3pm Stoke City v Tottenham Hotspur
Anything but a win and Stoke are bang in trouble. So anybody but Tottenham would’ve been preferable (Man City aside). Only City have been more ruthless on their travels over the last 10 matches and if Spurs needed a boost (which they didn’t) coming from behind to win at Chelsea for the first time in a dogs life would do the trick. Fact: Only three of Spurs’ starters were born the last time they won at the Bridge.
Tottenham will have a jump to 3rd place in their sights with the (currently 2pts better off) Liverpool in the tricky looking Mersey derby this weekend. Stoke may well need four wins from their last five matches after this. 
Scorecast: 0-2 at 11/2.
Tap in: Tottenham Win at 1/3.
Smart Money: Tottenham Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 23/20.
Long Shot: Tottenham Win from Behind at 8/1.

3pm Watford v Burnley
Has the look of a dead-rubber about it. Of course, Watford will want to finish as high above halfway as they can – 10th looks possible, 9th ambitious, 8th fanciful! And of course, Burnley will want to hang on to 7th place having sat there most of the season. Plus, both are in form. Watford have matched Liverpool at home over the last month and wins are like London buses for Burnley – 12 without a sniff and then three arrive all at once.
I know I’ve already got plenty of splinters in my arse this week, but the absence of emergency in both teams’ status makes think another stalemate. 
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Smart Money: Burnley Draw no Bet at 5/4. 

3pm West Brom v Swansea City
The Baggies’ season has gone from bad to worse, then back to bad again. And then into the side of a mountain killing everybody on board. Pardew’s dismissal might prompt a flicker of a response from the players that hated him most, but the fat lady has long cleared her throat and is well into the second verse. They’ve still got Man United, Liverpool and Tottenham to come. Jeesh. 
Swansea are not quite out of trouble yet, but if their situation hasn’t improved significantly by end of play here they deserve a nerve-shredding finale. All their bedfellows are also away from home this weekend with tougher tasks. 
Scorecast: 1-2 at 11/1.
Tap in: Double Chance – Swansea or Draw at 6/10.
Smart Money: Swansea Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 14/5.

5.30pm Man City v Man United
There was talk of City prioritising Tuesday second leg v Liverpool even before their 0-3 first leg drubbing. But there’s also the chance of clinching the title against the not-so-noisy neighbours, which should lift the mood a little. So let’s not expect City to roll over let United tickle their bellies. Another poor show here won’t do.
We know Jose will be set up not to lose. And I daresay it will be as muscular a line-up as he muster. There wasn’t much between them in the Old Trafford defeat and I fancy United can smuggle something away from the Etihad. It might be their cup final. 
Scorecast: 1-1 at 6/1.
Smart Money: First Half result a Draw at 23/20.
Long Shot: Man United Win & BTTS at 13/2.

Sunday
2.15pm Arsenal v Southampton

Could Mark Hughes take two teams down in the same season? It’s going to take something as spectacular as one of his volleys for the Saints to clamber out of the hole they have dug for themselves. Successive 0-3 drubbings away to Bottom Third Newcastle and West Ham is not the best way to prepare for three more trips to Top Half opposition before the end of the campaign. Oh and there is Chelsea and Man City at home too. 
Arsenal seem to have stirred from their mid-season nap, at home at least – where they remain only bettered by the Manchester duo. It’s looking increasingly like sixth place and the Europa League, which isn’t that much different from fourth place and the FA Cup. A familiar story over the last 15 years or so.
Scorecast: 3-0 at 11/1.
Tap in: Arsenal to Win at 4/7.
Smart Money: Arsenal to Win to Nil at 2/1.

4.30pm Chelsea v West Ham
The three points against Southampton last week not only kept the fans off the pitch but could go a long way to keeping West Ham in the Premier League. The job is not done yet though and the Hammers’ run-in is as troublesome as anyone’s in the dogfight.  There are home points to be had from Stoke up next and Everton on the final day, but Chelsea’s sloppy form over the last couple of month’s makes this look as fruitful as it has for a while. 
Only wins over West Brom and (somewhat fortunately) Crystal Palace have punctuated a run of five defeats, including two at home.  Last week’s put Tottenham out of reach, so it’s all about the FA Cup for Chelsea.
There won’t be much between these two.
Scorecast: 2-1 at 8/1.
Smart Money: Chelsea Win & BTTS at 2/1.

All the odds quoted are from William Hill If you haven’t got an account, sign up today and get £30 in free bets. Get stuck in here…

There’ll be a distinctly Coupon Bustin’ vibe in the air shortly.
 

Matt Nesbitt


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What we learned from Game Week 32

Tuesday, April 3 2018

 

That Matt Nesbitt has a peak at the blinders from the weekend...

The Premier League played ball again over Easter weekend. Six out of seven Tap-ins delivered just shy of 3pts profit, with a solid five out of eight Smarts Bets chucking in 4.91pts. But the star performer was the Scorecasts with a 10.5pt profit. 

GW 32

Strikerate

Pts Profit

Tap Ins

6 out of 7

2.98

Smart bets

5 out of 8

4.91

Long Shots

0 out of 4

-4.0

Scorecasts

2 out of 10

10.50


Heroes of the weekend were Burnley for delivering a scorecast for the second week in a row. And the back-fours of Man United, Arsenal and Newcastle for keeping three clean sheets to land our Win To Nil Trixie – and a 6.71pts return. 

Coupon Busters

Pts Profit

Bankers

4.21

Value Picks

6.71

TV Treble

10.50


Woofter of the weekend was me for choosing the Trixie over the straight Treble. Note to self: grow a set. 

Here’s what else we learned at the weekend…

We’re a step closer to landing our 16/1 Relegation Treble…

If the league table doesn’t change between now and the final day, we’ll be collecting. 

Three more defeats shortened the West Brom/ Stoke/ Southampton combo in to 9/4 – from the recommended 16/1 (February 27th post). 

Of the three, you’d say Stoke have the cojones to at least go down fighting. They showed a bit of spirit at Arsenal – and were perhaps a bit unlucky with the penalty decision. They still have West Ham, Palace and Swansea to play so could yet drag one of them (or Huddersfield) into the quicksand and clamber out over the top.

Southampton’s latest surrender (in the six-pointer at West Ham) tells me they are resigned to going down. Not that any of the players will give a single, solitary shit or course. It just means a summer of pestering their agents for a transfer. But phone reception is pretty good on the beaches of Dubai.

I’m less confident about our 16/1 Juventus punt…

If you also followed me in on Juventus to win the Champions League before their second round tie with Tottenham – and didn’t tear up your betting slip when they were a goal down in the second leg – you will have been as choked as I was they didn’t draw Roma or Sevilla in the quarter finals.

You have to fancy Real Madrid to ease past them over two legs. The bookies certainly do – Juve are currently priced at 12/1, so we can’t even trade our bet. So we might just have to suck that one up, Badmen.

But it’s that bloody Cristiano Ronaldo’s fault. Despite being past his best/ less effective/ being caught up by Kane, etc (copyright any football writer you care to name over the past 12 months – they are all equally clueless…). Big Ron is averaging a goal every 38 minutes since the turn of the year. 

Oh and a goal a game for nine seasons. Phe. Nom. E. Nal. 

Footballers don’t make old bones…

I hope Ray Wilkins pulls through. Sixty one is no age and he is a top bloke. We had him on Tip TV a few times – a Sky Digital TV show that was mostly shit, but great fun.  He was always a gent and gave me a lift to Ealing in his chauffeur-driven car once (he was serving a drink driving ban). We shared a kit-kat, fact. Top fella.

I’ll be back up in your grill on Thursday with the smart money bets for Game Week 33. 

Yeah? 


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Premier Injury INDEX

Friday, March 30 2018

 

I’ve been looking for a few long-term holds [12-24 months], low buy-in with the potential of a hefty upside. After scouring the INDEX for a bargain, I think this 20-year-old fits the bill perfectly. 


Frenkie de Jong broke onto the scene in 2016/17 and is an established first-team regular at Ajax. His talents have piqued the interest of some of Europe’s biggest clubs and he is already being talked about as a long-term successor to Sergio Busquets.  

Speaking in December, former Dutch star Arie Haan claimed. "De Jong is a better version of Franz Beckenbauer, because he has speed and passes the ball easily."


Despite a 13% rise over the past seven days, De Jong in-my-opinion, is an absolute steal at 89p. These types of investments will form the cornerstone of my INDEX portfolio going forward. 

 


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 32

Thursday, March 29 2018

 

Matt Nesbitt has a gander at this week's Premier League coupon...

With International shenanigans done and dusted until that little tournament in the summer, it’s back to Premier League biznizz this weekend.

Sit down, strap in and extinguish all cigarettes. 

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value out of the bookies. And any Long Shots are decent priced punts that have some statistical merit. 

All Scorecasts are priced up too.  

Come on in…

Saturday:
12.30pm Crystal Palace v Liverpool
This is a pressure-off match for Palace following their win in the six-pointer at Huddersfield last time out. Much of their run-in business in firmly in the Bottom Half, so anything added to the pot here will be a bonus. Only Top Six teams have taken maximum points here since Woy’s wevival.
Liverpool are bound to have one eye on Tuesday’s Champions League showdown with City, so a couple of big hitters might be benched. And a couple of others might be in third gear. So it’ll be down to one of the usual suspects to summon up a bit of magic.
Scorecast: 0-1 at 8/1.
Smart Money: Liverpool Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 8/5.
Long Shot: HT/ FT Draw/ Draw at 6/1.
 
3pm Brighton v Leicester City
Brighton look to have timed their best form of the season just right – only the Top Four have been in better nick over the last couple of months. Nine massive points from their last three at home and draws at Southampton and Stoke has built a nice little cushion between them and the bun-fight below. And with their tails up they’ll see this as opportunity to clamber a few places higher.
Leicester haven’t travelled well this season, taking just 2pts from 24pts v teams outside the Bottom Third. Brighton are currently on the cusp, so my needle is twitching between a home win and a draw.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Tap in: Double Chance: Brighton or Draw at 4/9.
Smart Money: Draw & BTTS at 17/5.
   
3pm Man United v Swansea City
If the season was judged on the last ten weeks, Swansea would be 5th in the table. Just a place behind United. But most of their good work takes place on home turf – only Watford have surrendered all the points to the visiting Swans. Three of the last four have been draws though and another here would be celebrated like a win.
Paradoxically, Old Trafford celebrates wins like draws these days. Jose is falling out with players, fans and the press alike these days with his muscular, attritional football. But the home table is easier on the eye. Only City have been better and we can expect them to get it done again here.
Scorecast: 1-0 at 5/1.
Tap in: Man United Win at 1/4.
Smart Money: Man United Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 10/11.
  
3pm Newcastle United v Huddersfield Town
Newcastle are another team that are finding their feet at a good time. They are unbeaten in five at home since their 0-1 thrashing to Man City. And a share of the points at Bournemouth and Palace has kept them in the huddle just above the relegation pie-fight. There’s still work to do, of course and a win here could strike a double blow – establishing a healthy foothold for the run-in and stamping on Huddersfield’s increasingly desperate clinging fingers.
It’s been a bad couple of weeks for David Wagner’s lot. Spilling 4pts at home to Swansea and Palace has made their next couple critical (it’s Brighton and Watford up next).   
Scorecast: 2-0 at 13/2.
Tap in: Newcastle Win at 8/11.
Smart Money: Newcastle Win To Nil at 8/5.

3pm Watford v Bournemouth
Couldn’t be more mid-table - 11th plays 10th both locked on 36pts. It could’ve been a lot worse for both teams though. Watford’s spectacular mid-season tailspin looked like costing them yet another manager, but a sequence of three home wins has arrested the nose dive. But two successive Top Six hidings on the road (0-8 on aggregate) will have them relieved to be back at home to the entertainingly chaotic Bournemouth. 
They are actually more consistent than they first appear – v Bottom Half, not bad; v Top Half, a bit rubbish. But that doesn’t help us much here. Expect goals at both ends though – 11 of the last 12 have delivered.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 11/2.
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 4/6. 
Long Shot: Bournemouth to Win From Behind at 14/1.

3pm West Brom v Burnley
Burnley are unlikely to poke their head through the loft hatch of the Top Six, but very much have seventh place in their own hands. And that will do very nicely, thank you. Their inexplicable 11 match unbeaten run has been buried by two good wins and their tails are up. They’ve got England internationals, don’t you know.
It can’t be easy turning up for work at West Brom these days. The new chief exec said this week he was ‘shocked’ at the state of the club off the pitch. Has he seen what’s happening on it?
Scorecast: 1-2 at 11/1.
Tap in: Burnley Draw No Bet at Evens.
Smart Money: Burnley Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 5/2.
Long Shot: HT/ FT Draw/ Burnley at 5/1.

3pm West Ham v Southampton
Optimistic Hammers will see this as a chance to put 5pts between their squeaky bums and Southampton, probably sending the Saints downstream to Championship waterfalls. Pessimists will expect to see West Ham clinging to the reeds, while Southampton clamber past them and take control of the oars. And the rest will be storming the pitch and calling everyone a ‘facking cant’.  
Moyes’ boys have been decent against the Bottom Six – W4 D3 L1 – but shipping 11 and scoring just two in their last three doesn’t bode well. As for Southampton, there might be a Sparky spark and a post-FA Cup win boost. But I’m not sure either team is good enough to win this. 
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Smart Money: First Half Result – Draw at Evens.

5.30pm Everton v Man City
Unlike Sky’s TV advert, I will acknowledge Man City’s opponents Everton. Although I suspect Pep will have picked his team for Tuesday’s Champions League assignment in the same city before he picks this one. They’ll be a few puffed-out International globetrotters also looking beyond this fixture to the glamour tie, so this will be an examination of City’s attitude as much as anything.
Everton’s attitude won’t be in question, particularly after Sky’s snub. Plus, they are three for three at home. And took a point from the Etihad fixture, remember.  So this has got home win written all over it, right? Wrong. But it does have the look of a Coupon Stopper…
Scorecast: 1-1 at 17/2.
Long Shot: Draw & BTTS at 11/2.

Sunday
1.30pm Arsenal v Stoke City

Stoke could’ve done with this match being a month ago. Then the obstinate form that grappled seven ugly points out of five horrible games might well have been too much for a troubled Arsenal to handle. Now though, buoyed from a hat-trick of wins – two of them v AC Milan – the Gunners look more like the team whose home record is only bettered by Man City this season. A perfect ten wins v teams outside the Top Five suggests a bad day for Stoke. A single point from eight Top Half visits isn’t a very strong counter argument. 
Scorecast: 3-0 at 15/2.
Tap in: Arsenal Win at 3/10.
Smart Money: Arsenal Win To Nil at 13/10.

4pm Chelsea v Tottenham Hotspur
We all know about Tottenham’s away record v the Top Four (or Five or Six, or whatever it is nowadays). One win in 18 matches… 11 defeats in Poch’s reign, including three this season… blah, blah. But Chelsea’s home form has been only just Top Six calibre this season – and barely Top Half form during 2018. 
Meanwhile Spurs have hit a nice groove, winning seven of this year’s ten matches and can not only (start to) lay the ghost of ‘that’ record, but also lay the boot in Chelsea’s Top Four hopes. An away win would leave Chelsea needing an 8pt turnaround, a draw keeps it at five.  
Scorecast: 1-1 at 11/2.
Tap in: Tottenham Draw No Bet at 21/20.
Smart Money: Draw & BTTS at 10/3.

Keep this frequency clear for some coupon busting Coupon Busters first thing Friday. 

Matt Nesbitt


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Coupon Busters - Game Week 32

Thursday, March 29 2018

 

Matt Nesbitt goes on a vlaue hunt this Easter Weekend...

So much for a White Easter.

Here are my forecasts for the weekend…

Banker of the Week

We’ll start with two cheeky Doubles to put the farm on. First up, home wins for Man United (v Swansea) and Arsenal (v Stoke).

Swansea are no longer the Premier League’s ugly ducklings since Carlos Carvalhal took charge, but most of their good work happens on home turf. No wins in seven on the road – including three trips to lower divisions – suggest United will grind this out. 

And Arsenal look back to something like the team that has been second only to Man City at home this season. Stoke have smuggled out just a single point from eight Top Half visits. 

Bet: Double - Man United & Arsenal to both win at 8/13
  
11th place Watford host 10th Bournemouth free from the expectation of climbing the table – there’s a 4pt chasm between bigger boys Leicester and Everton. And free from any real danger of dragged into the relegation bun-fight below – there’s a 5pt buffer to the Bottom Six.

Watford have scored for ten home games on the bounce and 11 of Bournemouth’s last 12 have seen goals at both ends. So expect a smug goal-fest. 

And Burnley are back on track after consecutive wins, but the bookies still don’t trust them. So we’ll snap up the generous 1/2 Double Chance being dangled at West Brom and double up… 

Bet: Double - Watford v Bournemouth BTTS & Burnley Double Chance at 8/5
  

Value of the Week

Both Man United and Arsenal should win at a canter. No-one has cleaner sheets than David De Gea and Stoke forget to take a goal with them on their travels as often as not. And I’m going to throw Newcastle into the mix.

Toon are unbeaten in five at home and three of their four wins against Bottom Four fodder have been To Nil. And visitors Huddersfield have fired more blanks than anyone on the road this season. 

BUT… just in case the Easter bunny lays a chocolate egg on our plans, let’s build in a little security. I propose a Trixie bet, which will cover out stakes if one lets us down.

Bet: Trixie - Man United, Arsenal and Newcastle to all Win To Nil

Note: A Trixie is four bets (three doubles and a treble). So, for example, a £1 stake will cost £4 and pay a maximum return of £26.85 if they all come in. Any two pays £4.40 

TV Treble

Watch and earn with these three this weekend…

  1. Liverpool Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 8/5
  2. Arsenal Win to Nil 
  3. Tottenham Double Chance 8/13

Bet: Treble at 19/2

Long Shot:

Man City will travel to Everton with a few puffed-out International globetrotters in their ranks. Some of whom might let their minds wander to the match they would much rather play in – Tuesday’s Champions League tie at Liverpool. 

Everton have no such concerns and Big Sam will have them ready. They’ve already taken a point from the Etihad this season and although I wouldn’t back against City, Everton could force them to take the long way around. So the 8/1 on Man City to Win from Behind might be worth a nibble.  

Offer 

All the odds quoted are from Coral. If you haven’t got an account, sign up here and get £20 in free bets…

Happy Easter, Badmen. 

Dip your bread in.

Matt Nesbitt


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What we learned from Game Week 31 & FA Cup 6th Rnd

Wednesday, March 21 2018


We’re hitting a nice groove now, collecting another tidy 4.46pts from our Smart Bets and another 5.4 from Friday’s Coupon Busters. So along come the International friendlies to ruin everything.

GW 31

Strikerate

Pts Profit

Tap Ins

5 out of 7

0.11

Smart bets

5 out of 7

4.46

Long Shots

0 out of 1

-1.0

Scorecasts

1 out of 8

-1.0

 

Hero of the weekend was Bournemouth’s Junior Stanislas for his 89th minute winner that added 2.36pts profit into the pot.  
 

Coupon Busters

Pts Profit

Banker

1.4

Value Picks

5.4

Scorers

-2.0

 

Demon of the week was Saint Cedric of Soares. The Southampton right-back whose late, inexplicable left-wing burst and finish put rubbed Wigan’s noses in it – and rubbed out our 11/2 Correct Score.   

And my weekend cock-up – which is becoming a theme (eyes roll) was telling you to take Romelu Lukaku in the Last Goal Scorer market, not the First. I’ve given myself a Chinese burn.

Here’s what else we learned at the weekend…

It’s the best time of the season for punting…

There’s plenty of form in the book, all teams and players are bang at it with pots being dangled - or relegation being threatened. And – importantly – everyone knows exactly what they need to do. 
It is so much easier to accurately profile a match that has an agenda. Whether it is a cup second leg, overcoming a first leg deficit… or a team handpicking their matches to hit an end-of-season points total. It’s like getting the nod on a race that one horse is trying to win, but the other is just there for a blowout. But let’s not get into Cheltenham…

It’ll be an exciting end to the season for Stoke fans for a change…

I didn’t see the home defeat to Everton coming. Not sure even Big Sam did after just 1pt from the previous six away days – and that looted from an already burnt out West Brom. 

On the (not very) bright side, it has set up a grandstand finish to the season. Assignments at Arsenal (0pts), West Ham (1-3pts) and Liverpool (0pts) and home matches against Tottenham (0-1pts) and Burnley (1-3pts) will neither condemn, nor save the Potters. 

So their fate will be decided by successive six-pointers v Palace and Swansea in their final two matches. Both of whom might need their fate deciding too. 

Fuck Man City’s lap of honour, THAT’S where SKY should be on final day. And not just because we’re on the Relegation Treble of West Brom, Stoke & Southampton at 16/1. Now 10/3. 

Gawd knows how the World Cup in Russia is going to pan out…

No, I’m not talking about the platoons of hairy shouldered hooligans - all built like power lifters and charged up home-made vodka – itching to kick the world in the Gulags. Or, yer man Putin and his chemical brothers. I’m talking about the team that Gareth Southgate has got to try to build from the ливень дерьма (google it) on offer.

At the risk of going all Joey Barton, I can’t remember another period where no one has any idea who the goalkeeper, both centre backs, the left back, one central midfielder or the formation of the national team was. Never mind the best 11.

But…er… I’d still have a sneaky tenner on going out in the quarter-finals to Germany on penalties. 
 
I’ll be having a look at the internationals and if there is anything you should know about, you’ll know about it.

Yeah? 

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier Injury INDEX

Sunday, March 18 2018

                           

                   

West Brom are languishing at the bottom from the Premier League, eight-points from safety, and Alan Pardew said his senior players would “need to deliver” if the Baggies stood any chance of remaining in the top-flight.

Jonny Evans certainly falls into that category, and the returning captain merits some serious consideration heading into the remaining two months of the campaign.

The centre-back has attracted a lot of attention during recent windows – Manchester City, Arsenal and Manchester United – all touted as potential destinations which saw his stock rise up-to £1.58 in late-December on the INDEX.

Evans is currently sitting around 27% below that high and with more interest expected in the summer, his price can only go one way on the INDEX.


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Coupon Busters - GW 31 + FA Cup Qtrs

Saturday, March 17 2018

 

Short and sharp this week. I’ve got to see a man about a horse this afternoon.

Tally ho!

Banker of the Week

Only Liverpool at home to Watford qualifies as a Nailed-on pick in the PL this weekend. From the FA Cup quarter-finals we get another at Old Trafford, where United have to beat Brighton to save face – and their season. So there’s a Double. 

And I’m also prepared to add Tottenham to the party. The FA Cup is a bigger deal following their Champions League exit and the semi and the final will be played at home.

Bet: Treble – Liverpool, Tottenham and Man United to Win at 7/5.
  
Value of the Week

Despite not qualifying as a Nailed-on pick, I’m happy to go with Bournemouth to beat dead-team-walking West Brom. Ten of their last 11 have seen goals at both ends too (the anomaly being a clean sheet at Chelsea) so let’s double-up, shall we?

And then sprinkle a Man United Win To Nil on the top. No more wriggle room for Jose.

Bet: Double - Bournemouth Win & BTTS & Man United Win to Nil at 6/1


Goal Scorers

  • Romelu Lukaku has emerged as one of United’s stand-up (if not stand out) performers and loves playing the likes of Brighton. Last Scorer 11/4.
  • Heung-Min Son is the go to guy with Kane missing. Seven in his last four for Spurs. First Scorer 7/2.

Offer 

Sign up with William Hill and stake £10 on the Premier League this weekend and you’ll get £30 in free bets. Get stuck in here…

I'll be back on Monday to pick the bones out.

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier Injury INDEX

Friday, March 16 2018

 

                                           

On Friday morning, Atletico Madrid confirmed that full-back Filipe Luis had suffered a leg fracture during the Europa League second-leg away win at Lokomotiv Moscow.

And with the World Cup exactly 13 weeks away, Luis’ price tumbled on the INDEX - falling from a high of £1.18 on Thursday to just 66p less than 24 hours later - based on the assumption that the Brazilian would miss the remainder of the season and the upcoming World Cup finals.

Now, that maybe the case, but there is also the possibility of a quick return. Joe Ledley was back in action after only 35 days ahead of the 2016 European Championships while other examples include Steven Reid [38 days] and Beram Kayal [67 days]. And for that reason alone, I see Luis as an excellent short-term punt….

Worst case scenario, Luis will be back in 2018/19 and I can guarantee you will be making money on the INDEX


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PL Previews GW 31 plus FA Cup Qtr Finals

Thursday, March 15 2018

 

We’ve got a league and cup double this week. Four from the Premier League and the four FA Cup quarter-finals. 

As per, the Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value out of the bookies. And any Long Shots are decent priced punts that have some statistical merit. 

All Scorecasts are priced up too.  

Pow! Right in the kisser.

Premier League

Saturday:
3pm Bournemouth v West Brom

Bournemouth’s form-line can look a bit new-born giraffe-like sometimes, but a home match with West Brom is a good cure for the wobbles. To be fair, the sea-siders are pretty consistent against the Bottom Half – just two defeats in 14 all season. They’ve scored in their last 11 PL outings and won’t need many to win this.
Albion have beaten Bournemouth once this season and the pressure should be off a bit – unless the players are determined to get rid of Pardew (dumping in the sea at Bournemouth could work. Just saying…).
It’s seven defeats on the spin now for West Brom and three without a goal on the road.  
Scorecast: 3-1 at 14/1.
Tap in: Bournemouth Draw No Bet at 4/11.
Smart Money: Bournemouth Win & BTTS at 29/10.
 
3pm Huddersfield Town v Crystal Palace
Ooosh! A proper six-pointer this. A win for either team will give a big jolt of momentum for the final straight. Defeat will feel like stepping into a puddle of quicksand.
Huddersfield have picked up 4pts from their last two at home – and will have fond memories of their 3-0 win at Palace on the opening day. But failing to score against ten-man Swansea last week despite 81% possession, 30 shots, 12 corners and several kitchen sinks thrown, must be a worry. This is by a distance their most favourable match of the run-in. A draw might feel like a defeat.
Palace don’t really want a draw either, but after four pointless matches can’t afford to be fussy. They certainly can’t afford to lose but a repeat of their second half performance at Chelsea would do. 
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 5/2.
Long Shot: Huddersfield to Win From Behind at 16/1.
   
3pm Stoke City v Everton
This could be the tipping point for Stoke. They’re going to need at least 10pts from their eight matches and if they are not 3pts to the good after this, they might well need a full 6pts from their last two v Palace and Swansea. My bottom clenches at the thought of it.
It’s not out of the question though. Everton have managed just 1pt from their last six on the road (at West Brom, which you could argue isn’t even worth 1pt…).  But another here would probably satisfy Big Sam, so it could come down to the potency of Stoke’s forwards. And that’s bad news for Stoke. No team has scored fewer in the last ten matches.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Tap in: Double Chance Stoke & Draw at 4/11.
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 11/4.
  
5.30pm Liverpool v Watford
Hmmm, Watford might walk onto one here…
These two met on the opening day, drawing 3-3 in a match that hinted at Liverpool’s season ahead. Goals for their Fab…er… Three, Mane, Firmino and Salah but some keystone Klopp defending that left you scratching your head. Since then though they been very efficient at home v teams outside the Top Five – W8 D3 with just four goals conceded. 
Watford have been equally inefficient on the road – perhaps even more so – failing to take so much as a point from seven visits to Top Half teams and only hitting the net once in their last seven away days.  They have a bit more work to do to bolt down the mid-table finish that will do very nicely thank you, but can do it at home. This is a free hit. But it could turn into a slap.
Scorecast: 3-0 at 6/1.
Tap in: Home Win at 2/9.
Smart Money: Liverpool/ Liverpool HT/FT at 4/6.

FA Cup

Saturday:
12.15pm Swansea City v Tottenham 

This might not be the cakewalk that the bookies think it is. 
Swansea have won all seven home games since Tottenham beat them here at the turn of the year. Playing their way out of trouble in the PL – or at least into the light rough – and transforming the mood at Liberty. So this is a no-pressure match for the Swans. 
Tottenham however need to win this, then the semi-final, then the final to hand in a good score card at the end of the season.  Form is no problem – the Juve defeat was the first in 19 matches – and they have won six of their seven at Bottom Half clubs. Kane or no Kane they are well able to progress to a ‘home’ semi-final.
Scorecast: 0-2 at 11/2.
Tap in: Tottenham to Win at 1/2.
Smart Money: Tottenham Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 11/10. 
 
7.45pm Man United v Brighton
This is a big game for United now. Like Tottenham, winning the FA Cup would nudge the needle on the season-ometer from ‘Average’ to ‘Good’. Unlike Tottenham they need a performance to win back hearts and minds. And that’s bad news for Brighton. Despite never looking that convincing at any stage since September, United’s home record can only be sniffed at by neighbours City. Just 7pts spilt all season. Expect all the big guns. And so long as one or two are firing, they’ll be in the hat for the semis. 
I dare say Chris Hughton would swap 6pts from his next two home games for an appearance in the FA Cup semi-final. In fact, he’d probably take 9pts from his next three in exchange for winning the thing. So can’t really make a case.   
Scorecast: 2-0 at 5/1.
Tap in: Man United to Win at 1/3.
Smart Money: Man United Win to Nil at Evens.
   
Sunday:
1.30pm Wigan v Southampton

If this was a horse race, I’d skip it and wait for the next. Too many variables make it a bit of a punt. But this is the business I’ve chosen, so here goes…
I fancy Southampton to pull one out of the fire. Results at Man United, Burnley and at home to Tottenham and Arsenal suggests talent. The insipid recent draw at home to Stoke and surrender at Newcastle hints at moodiness. But that could lift with the change of manager. Plus, five away games left could mean the 10pts (or so) required might be beyond them. So this has last hoorah written all over it.
Wigan’s home form is good… in League One. They sit second in the table, but have only won one of six v the Top Eight.  And they too have more realistic fish to fry. If you know what I mean.    
Scorecast: 0-1 at 11/2.
Smart Money: Southampton Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 17/10.
  
4.30pm Leicester City v Chelsea
Another tricky call here, Badmen. Chelsea’s midweek mugging will have taken a toll. Getting beaten in Barca is no drama, but delivering a season-best performance and still getting hit for three must sting. It was their fifth away defeat on the spin too. Cor blimey.
Leicester don’t have a Lionel Messi, but will smell blood. They’ve only managed 5pts from a possible 30pts against the Top Six so far, but have goals in them – although only one at a time in six of their last seven. And it’ll probably take two to get past Chelsea.
Four losses and two draws in their last nine has edged Chelsea out of the Top Four picture, which – again – ramps up the importance of the cup. I’m seeing goals at both ends. And maybe a replay to split them. 
Scorecast: 2-2 at 12/1. 
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 7/10.
Long Shot: Leicester/ Draw HT/FT at 14/1.

I’ll getting all up in your grill with some Coupon Busters at noon Friday. 

Don’t miss.

Matt Nesbitt  


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What we learned from Game Week 30

Tuesday, March 13 2018

 

Caps doffed to Man City and Tottenham this weekend for delivering the big prices that took us into profit. A more sedate 4.5pts this week, but if you see me in traffic keep your windows up.

Unless you see Troy Deeney, that is. His missed penalty at Arsenal cost us a few tokens - but make sure your lane is clear before you flick the ‘v’s. He’s a big lad.

So we had to settle for one winning Coupon Buster, returning a 3.39pt loss. But the Weekend Previews make for more pleasant reading:

GW 30

Strikerate

Pts Profit

Tap Ins

6 out of 8

1.35

Smart bets

3 out of 9

0.55

Long Shots

1 out of 1

8.5

Scorecasts

1 out of 10

-2.5

 
This is what we learned this weekend…

Normal service is resumed at Arsenal. For now anyway… 

I took a punt on Arsenal’s domestic wobble to continue beyond their midweek win in Milan, but was wrong. They look galvanised. January recruits Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan already look Arsenal’s biggest threats and with four knock-overs to come at the Emirates (Stoke, Southampton, West Ham and Burnley) they could end up with the second best home record in the Premier League. It’s already superior to Tottenham, Liverpool and Chelsea. 

And don’t rule out a Europa League win. The 7/1 recommended in this post last week is already down to 4s.     

The best way to get past David De Gea…

My 0-0 call for Man United v Liverpool resulted in another portion of chips covered in my own piss. But if they played again tomorrow, I’d back it again. 

Jurgen Klopp clearly overlooked defending goal kicks in his preparation – and watching Lukaku ragdoll Lovren around was like watching Anthony Joshua kick a puppy to death. Neither scenario would happen again.  And how many back-heeled volleys can United’s centre backs keep firing into their own net!? I thought Jones’s effort at Wembley would take some beating, but Bailly topped it on Saturday. And it was the only moment that De Gea looked stretched. 

What are the odds on a Lindeloft rabona at the Etihad on April 7th to clinch the league title for City…?

It’s not always easy to predict what’s going to come out of a pundit’s mouth…

Following Jermain Jenas’ honest appraisal/ delusional ramblings (choose one) about his career last weekend, the pundit expelling frothy bile out of his mouth this week was Jamie Carragher.  
It’s prompted a heart-warming outpouring of ‘SACK HIM!’ from the world of punditry. Joey Barton, Richard Keys and Vinnie Jones* leading the angry mob. Because, after all, they have never done anything wrong have they? Oh, hang on…

*I’ve included Vinnie Jones under the broad umbrella of ‘pundit’ because ‘washed-up skint cartoon mockney villain’ upset the flow of the sentence.  

City are following the script…

Multiple reasons for Badmen enjoy Man City’s 2-0 cruise past Stoke. Unless you’re a Potters fan, of course. Or Man United. 

The match landed a 6.87pt profit for us – ticking in a Tap-in, Smart Bet and Scorecast – and applied another nail in Stoke’s Premier League coffin, which is good news for all who followed me in on the WBA, Southampton & Stoke Relegation Treble. Tipped at 16/1 in this post two weeks ago, it is now as short as 7/2.

City’s win also sets up the prospect of the Premier League title being won v United in the teatime kick-off on Saturday, April 7th. Sky TV will be foaming at the mouth.

Keep 'em peeled on Thursday for a Premier League/ FA Cup hybrid I've been developing in my underground bunker.

 Matt Nesbitt
  

 


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Champions League Preview: Last 16 2nd legs

Monday, March 12 2018

 

Having a dabble on the Champions League this week? Have a gander at this before you do...

Real Madrid, Manchester City, Liverpool and Juventus have all booked their place in the Champions League quarter-finals after completing their last-16 victories the previous week. Bayern Munich have effectively joined that quartet after a 5-0 first leg win over Besiktas and must merely rubber-stamp their progress in Istanbul, but the three other clashes left to decide are more evenly-poised. Shakhtar Donetsk bring a one-goal lead to Rome while Barcelona and Chelsea are currently all-square, as are Manchester United and Sevilla.
 

Tuesday:
7:45pm Man Utd v Sevilla

Not for the first time, Jose Mourinho faced criticism for his side’s defensive approach in the first leg, which saw them draw 0-0 in Sevilla. The clean sheet could be put down to the work of goalkeeper David De Gea, who made eight saves – the most for a Manchester United goalkeeper in a Champions League game since Edwin Van Der Sar against Barcelona in 2011. The Red Devils should show more ambition here against a Sevilla side that have conceded 11 goals in their last six La Liga matches – only Levante have shipped more. United have won each of their three Champions League home games against Basel, Benfica and CSKA Moscow, winning two of them by a margin of more than one goal. Paul Pogba is back fit, Alexis Sanchez adds quality while Romelu Lukaku has answered some of his big game critics.
Scorecast: 2-0 at 6/1 with Betway as of 9th March
Tap-in: Manchester United win 4/6
Smart money: Goal Bands Team B: 0 at 11/10

7:45pm Roma v Shakhtar Donetsk
Shakhtar Donetsk reversed a half-time deficit to win the first leg 2-1, with Fred’s stunning free-kick putting them in front. Marlos, a Brazil-born Ukranian right-winger, was the driving force for Kroty, constantly looking to play balls in behind full-backs and will be a threat again at Stadio Olimpico. Roma though have the threat of Edin Dzeko, who has scored 18 goals in all competitions this term including a brace in a recent Serie A victory at Napoli. I Giallorossi though have accrued fewer domestic points at home than they have on the road, so we’re not backing them.
Scorecast: 1-2 at 12/1
Tap-in: Shakhtar win or draw 6/5
Smart money: Shakhtar win and over 2.5 goals 13/2

Wednesday:

7.45 Besiktas v Bayern Munich

Besiktas have not lost any of their last 13 home games in European competition, which can be attributed partly to the notoriously intimidating atmosphere in Istanbul. Bayern Munich will be glad therefore, that they completed the job on their own turf with a 5-0 first leg win. Thomas Muller and Robert Lewandowski both bagged braces when the two sides met at the Allianz Arena last month, with Kingsley Coman also among the goals after Domagoj Vida’s early red card. The Turks though will want to exit the Champions League with dignity and with Bayern likely to rotate and perhaps drop the intensity of their play here, we’re backing a tight encounter.
Scorecast: 0-0 at 18/1
Tap-in: Under 3.5 goals at 7/10
Smart money: Under 2.5 goals at 17/10

Barcelona v Chelsea
It has been a poor start to 2018 for Chelsea, who have won just two of their eight Premier League games. The possibility of a successful season for the champions therefore, can only be salvaged with victory over Barcelona, with whom they drew the first leg 1-1. While there are positives to take from their unified display at Stamford Bridge, they still have it all do at Camp Nou. There are reasons why Ernesto Valverde’s side are unbeaten in La Liga – and why they have lost just two home games in all competitions since April 2016. The brilliance of Lionel Messi – who scored his first goal in his ninth appearance against Chelsea in London – may be considered one reason, but the midfield is another. Paulinho’s power, Rakitic’s ball-retention and Busquets’ bite provides the perfect foil for the timeless creativity of Andres Iniesta, who is expected to be fit here. A tough night could be in store therefore, for Antonio Conte’s off-colour Blues.
Scorecast: 4-0 at 12/1
Tap-in: Half-time/Full-time Barcelona – Barcelona at 21/20
Smart money: Team B (Chelsea) Total Goals Under 0.5 at 11/10

Good luck!

Ben Dinnery, Premier Injuries.

P.S. Betting Badman Matt Nesbitt will be back tomo with a review of the weekend's Premier League action and a few thoughts on what we learned.

 


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Coupon Busters - Game Week 30

Friday, March 9 2018

 

Typical isn’t it? Couple of good results and now he thinks he can land 275/1 and 429/1 shots in the same week… Eyes roll.

So…er… are you interested or not…?

Thought so. 

Banker of the Week

Only two Match Results stand out in a coupon littered with six-pointers from every section of the Premier League.

Chelsea aren’t in the best fettle, but will be much happier facing a patched-up Palace than their last three assignments (Barcelona, Man United & Man City). And need a win tucked in their belt ahead of Wednesday’s  Champions League 2nd leg.

I fancy Man City will want to get domestic business taped off asap, to support their European effort. Plus, Stoke have more realistic fish to fry in matches to come.  

The Double looks solid, if unspectacular at 8/13. But I’m not done there…

You can make a good case for Both Teams to Score at seven of the ten Premier League grounds this weekend. But the two I’m taking to trial are both on Sunday.

It has been ten matches since Arsenal kept a clean sheet and all their eggs are now in the Europa League basket. Watford meanwhile are on the up after three wins in four and Deeney and Co will be cracking their knuckles at the prospect of doing the double over Arsenal for the first time in… I dunno… ever?

After Wednesday’s schooling, Tottenham’s credentials face a Bourne-mouth ultimatum – and they have a habit of starting slow. Their hosts won’t. And the numbers are good here too. Nine of Bournemouth’s last ten and eight of Spurs’ last 11 on the road have delivered at both ends.

  • Bet: Chelsea & Man City Win Double at 8/13
  • Bet: BTTS Double – Arsenal v Watford & Bournemouth v Tottenham at 19/10

 

Value of the Week

It looks a good week for the Pools (remember them?). There are at least eight very competitive contests, so likely to be a few Draws around. 

Man United and Liverpool always draw (four on the spin)… Burnley have drawn four of their last seven away and West Ham can’t afford anything less… Brighton have drawn three of their last four away and Everton will take any point in a storm right now… And I can’t split Huddersfield and Swansea. 

On top of the numbers, none of the teams mentioned would turn their nose up at a point this weekend. But to give ourselves a safety blanket, let’s place a dandy doodle Yankee on all four to Draw

  • Bet: Yankee – Man United v Liverpool, Everton v Brighton, Huddersfield v Swansea & West Ham v Burnley to all Draw.  

Note: A Yankee is 11 bets (six doubles, four trebles and a four-fold). So a £1 stake will cost £11 and pay a maximum return of £275.83 (if all four matches are drawn). Any double will return £9.30.

If you’re feeling fruity, you might want to turn it up one louder…

I quite like the look of 1-1 in all of the above and - just for fun, no mortgage money - will be having a little nibble on a Correct Score Trixie.

  • Bet: Man United v Liverpool, Everton v Brighton & West Ham v Burnley to all Draw 1-1.  

Note: A Trixie is four bets (three doubles and a treble). So a £1 stake will cost £3 and pay a maximum return of £429 if they all come in. Any two pays £45.50. 
 

TV Treble

Watch and earn with these three this weekend…

- Man United v Liverpool Under 2.5 Goals
- Chelsea to beat Palace
- Arsenal v Watford BTTS

  • Bet: Treble at 7/2

 

Offer of the Week 

All these prices are avaiilable at Billy Hills. Sign up with William Hill and stake £10 on the Premier League this weekend and you’ll get £30 in free bets. Get stuck in here…

Happy Mother's Day.

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 30

Thursday, March 8 2018

 

I know what you’re thinking…

After a decent return last week, stand by for more trumpet blowing about my 16/1 Juventus tip to win the Champions League (Feb 13th post)…

Well, you’re bang wrong. Just updating for those Badmen who took the plunge with me. 

Juve are now 8/1. And that price will only shorten if they draw Roma or Shakhtar in the quarters, both of whomed I’d fancy them to get past. Then we’ll be in handy trading position. I’ll keep you posted. 

Now, to Premier League business…

An ugly set of fixtures to play with this week. 

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value out of the bookies. And any Long Shots are decent priced punts that have some statistical merit. 

All Scorecasts are priced up too.  

Eyes down…

Saturday:
12.30pm Man United v Liverpool

Could be a runner-up play-off at Old Trafford.
Still plenty of points to be played, of course, But these two won’t be dropping many on the run-in. United have the incentive of opening a 5pt gap with a home win, but we all know that Jose would take a 0-0 right now to keep the gap at 2pts. Only two teams have scored at the theatre of increasingly dull dreams this season. But no team has scored more than Liverpool on the road. No… not even Man City.
United have only played in the second half of their last two, coming from behind to beat Chelsea and Palace. They will need to score first in this one, or keep Liverpool out.
Scorecast: 0-0 at 10/1.
Tap in: First Half Draw at 11/10.
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 10/3.
 
3pm Everton v Brighton
Although both teams are locked on 34pts it has been a contrasting few weeks for two managers. 
Hughton and Brighton arrive at Goodison unbeaten in five with more goals in the last four matches than their previous 16. But they are homers (stop it). Just 1pt and a single goal from seven matches away to Top Half teams should bring them down to earth a bit. And so will this…
Everton’s home form over the last eight would put them in the Top Five. Wins over Palace, Leicester, Swansea, Huddersfield and West Ham in that run suggest they are equipped to handle Bottom Half teams. Which Brighton were until ten minutes ago. 
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at Evens.
Smart Money: Draw & Both Teams to Score at 18/5.
   
3pm Huddersfield Town v Swansea City
Huddersfield’s dangerous ploy of choosing the matches they think they can get something from, relies on them then doing so. It worked in the two matches (v Bournemouth and West Brom) bookended by covering up and laying on the ropes at Man United and Tottenham. But didn’t in the previous two (at home to West Ham and away to Stoke). This is the first of five matches v teams within a 6pt bracket. Not quite a must-win, but certainly a must-not-lose.  
Swansea have their tails up (Swans have tails, right?) after four home wins on the spin, but are still ugly ducklings away from their nest. Their 5pts from six trips to Bottom Half teams needs to be at least 6pts come Sunday. And I reckon it will.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Smart Money: Draw & Both Teams to Score at 7/2.
  
3pm Newcastle United v Southampton
This is the first of six away games still to be negotiated by Southampton. That’s a tough ask even if you are a decent team in good form. The Saints are neither. Oh and two of their home matches are v Chelsea and Man City. This might not be the last chance saloon, but it’s definitely on the same bus route.
Their 0-0 draw at home to Stoke can’t have been good for confidence and this looks like another six-pointer.
Newcastle will look to carry on from where they left off at St James’ – Man United’s scalp will still be hanging in the home dressing room. And Toon have punched their weight against Bottom Third bedfellows, winning six (D4 L1) of 11. And I can’t keep putting 1-1 draws.     
Scorecast: 2-1 at 9/1. 
Tap in: Newcastle Draw No Bet at 4/5.
Smart Money: Newcastle Win & Both Teams to Score at 24/5.

3pm West Brom v Leicester City
The wheels have well and truly come off West Brom now. Five defeats on the bounce – six if you include Southampton in the FA Cup – plus the dressing room squabbles and swinging sword above Alan Pardew’s head, make West Brom the most popular opponent in the PL right now. Leicester will welcome the chance to kick a team when they’re down and put an end to a sticky run of form themselves. 
Five without a win, including home matches v Swansea, Stoke and Bournemouth is no way to prepare for an FA Cup 6th Round tie with Chelsea. Leicester’s best chances of an away win before the end of the campaign.
Scorecast: 1-2 at 9/1.
Tap in: Leicester Draw No Bet at 8/11.
Smart Money: Leicester Win & Both Teams to Score at 9/2.

3pm West Ham v Burnley
Cripes, this is another one with ‘Draw’ written all over it… This fence is giving me splinters.
West Ham are unbeaten in their last four at home, but will be as disappointed with the points dropped v Palace and Bournemouth as they are chuffed with wins over Watford and West Brom. The Hammers have got three of the Top Four still to play, so this one (plus Southampton and Stoke at home) look the best chance of hitting 39pts. Setting up a twitchy last day hosting his old club Everton. Ooof! 
Burnley finally got that 12-without-a-win monkey off their back last weekend and if you had to name a claret and blue winner, it would be them. But six away draws, including four from the last seven on the road tells me…
Scorecast: 1-1 at 5/1.
Tap in: Double Chance Burnley or Draw at 8/13.
Long Shot: Burnley Win & Both Teams to Score at 13/2.

5.30pm Chelsea v Crystal Palace
You have to feel for Palace at the moment. They treatment room looks like the Somme in 1914 and even the fit players looked broken men after their 93rd minute mugging by Man United last Monday. It’s just 2pts from six matches now for Palace, points at home to Newcastle and away to West Ham about as much as they’ve looked capable of. 
Chelsea’s last few weeks hasn’t been a lot better – four defeats from five in the PL. Man City and United they could probably take, but Bournemouth and Watford…? Minds will no doubt be wandering to Wednesday and Camp Nou, but this could be positive – with places up for grabs.
Scorecast: 3-0 at 7/1.
Tap in: Chelsea to Win at 3/10.
Smart Money: Chelsea to Win To Nil at Evens.

Sunday:
1.30pm Arsenal v Watford

Arsenal, eh? What do you make of them? Their home stats still make them a decent side. Only 1pt worse off than Liverpool at Anfield, just 2pts less effective than Spurs at Wembley and they’ve scored more goals than both of them. Five defeats from seven is as bad as it has got in the Wenger era, though. And that’s a long time.
Watford have managed to arrest their slide, which started about November time as far as anyone can recall. Three home wins on the bounce has got them back looking up rather than down, but 0pts from six matches to Top Half teams doesn’t support their case here. Looking at their remaining away trips – Liverpool, Tottenham and Man United - it won’t get much easier than this. And they’ll like the fact Arsenal haven’t kept a clean sheet in 11 Premier League matches. 
Scorecast: 2-2 at 14/1.
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 8/13.
Long Shot: Watford Win & Both Teams to Score at 8/1.

4pm Bournemouth v Tottenham  
The midweek lesson at the hands of Juventus will have been a body blow for Spurs and takes this from a routine assignment to a tricky one. But Tottenham have momentum and form – Wednesday was the first blip in 18 matches (all comps). It might even galvanise them for the run-in – Top Four and the FA Cup would still be a very good season.
Bournemouth have only lost one in their last ten. But their liking for ‘total football’ usually means they come unstuck against the Top Half. Just three wins from 15 attempts so far (D2 L10). Expect goals at both ends too. There have been in nine of Bournemouth’s last ten and eight of Spurs’ last 11 on the road.
Scorecast: 1-2 at 7/1.
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 7/10.
Smart Money: Tottenham Win & Both Teams to Score at 19/10.
Long Shot: Tottenham to Win from Behind at 15/2.

Monday:
8pm Stoke City v Man City  

Things have never really been pretty at Stoke. Even when they are winning. Paul Lambert’s stint has been deliberately ugly to rescue the season, but squeezing just 4pts out of five teams – four of which are in jabbing range – isn’t enough. And now it might get gruesome. 
The 29 goals conceded in seven matches v the Top Five were under a different manager and under different circumstances, but doesn’t bode well. Especially as they face three of them again after this one. City are picking their punches a bit nowadays, but will want this title in the bag asap. Suspect this will be over by half-time.   
Scorecast: 0-2 at 11/2.
Tap in: Man City Win at 2/9.
Smart Money: Man City Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 23/20.

Coupon Busters, y’say? Noon tomorrow.

Now, get to the chopper.


Matt Nesbitt


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What we learned from Game Week 29

Tuesday, March 6 2018

 

Hope this weekend put a big smile on your face. No, I don’t mean listening to Jermaine Jenas’ rib-tickling re-imagining of his career – which I’ll come onto shortly – I mean the fistful of dollar winning bets this weekend.

It’s nice when things go for you – but props to Riyad and Nemanja for their timely wonder strikes that helped deliver a tidy 33.48pts profit from the Match Previews and another couple of scheckles (2.6pts) from the Coupon Busters.      

  GW 29          Strike-rate       Pts Profit
 Tap-ins  8 out of 8  3.75
 Smart Bets  6 out of 10  14.73
 Long Shots  0 out of 1  -1.0
 Scorecasts  3 out of 10  16.0

 

 

 

 

Hope you were on a few.

This is what we learned this weekend…

Matic doesn’t score tap-ins…

It was a little bit like the bad old days at Palace on Monday night. Matic’s Fergie-time screamer kept United in second spot – until Saturday, anyway – and maintained our 100% strike rate of Tap-ins this weekend. But I’m not convinced by United. Coming from behind to beat a patched-up Palace is not the same as doing it against a good Tottenham team (which used to happen most seasons, as I recall) and a world away from clawing back Bayern Munich in a CL Final.  Enjoy Jose-time. It won’t last.

Arsenal are the worst team in the Premier League…

In 2018. Five defeats from eight in the league and eight from 14 in all comps is as bad as it has been in the Wenger era. By a distance. But not even that tells the whole story…

Of those five defeats, away at Spurs and even the Cup Final defeat to Man City you could probably swallow in isolation. But at Bournemouth, Swansea and Brighton…? And, oh yeah, Nottm Forest. Then at home to that Swedish pub team…?! I’m going to need an emoji in minute. 

Even the wins pose ugly questions: Palace and Everton had both rolled over inside 22 minutes (4-0 and 3-0 up on each occasion). Ostersunds? Pfft. So out scrapping Chelsea is their only creditable performance this year (and Conte’s lot haven’t beaten anyone outside the Bottom Four since).

Ready for the punchline?

You’ll get 7/1 to win the Europa League. I’ve had a silly few notes on it.

Jermaine Genius and his missing medals and caps…

Poor JJ. I had no idea he’d had all his medals and caps stolen by that pesky Golden Generation of better midfield players. Lording it with their better managers… more talented team mates… bigger clubs… and superior motivation. 

It’s no wonder he didn’t get the… ahem… 120 England caps that he could have (copyright Jake Humphrey, 2018). 

Now, Jackanory Jenas isn't unique in his rose-tinted view. We've all got a mate (or ten) in the pub who coulda woulda shoulda done it all if it hadn't been for fast women and Blue WKD. 

But let’s just break down this wealth of ‘greatest ever’ English midfield talent that held poor Jermain back… 

Stevie and Lamps, fine. Hargreaves and Carrick, yep okay they were decent. But now I'm struggling a bit. Gareth Barry…? Erm...Scott Parker…? James Milner…? Tom fucking Huddlestone…?

If you think you dreamt it, check it out again here…

Also, I've today learned that Jermain has changed the spelling of his surname from Genas to Jenas to call himself ‘JJ’.

Think that should be a ‘P’, JG…

Our Relegation Treble is looking up...

Another West Brom defeat and the Southampton v Stoke stalemate didn’t do our treble on the three of them to go down any harm at all. Unless you are not on yet. I flagged it at 16/1 last week, it’s now trading at 8/1 (Bet365 and SkyBet). 

West Brom are already in the taxi with the meter running. But I can’t see Southampton scraping together enough points from their six – yes, SIX - away matches. So they will probably have to beat Chelsea and Man City at home.

‘Room for one more, mate…?’

Stoke only have three winnable looking matches left (Everton and Palace at home, Swansea away). And another couple of drawables (West Ham away, Burnley at home). That’ll add up to 38, which might do. But the Palace and Swansea matches are the last two to play. And could be six… nine… fuck it, 12-pointers by then.

‘Can we have three in the back, mate…?'

See you next Thursday for more of the same. Yeah?

Matt Nesbitt

 

  
 


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Coupon Busters - Game Week 29

Friday, March 2 2018

 

I’ll say Coupon and you say Buster.

Coupon…

Coupon…

C’mon party people. You can do better than that. I said, I’ll say Coupon and you say Buster.

COUPON…

COUPON…

There we go. Oo-eh, oo-eh!

Let’s get this site post started…

Banker

The two standouts are Tottenham and Liverpool to beat Huddersfield and Newcastle. All four teams arguably have bigger - or at least, different fish to fry. 

Tottenham and Liverpool have Champions League business midweek. And Huddersfield and Newcastle will be targeting more realistic assignments to stack up enough points to stay in the division. So we can expect low-key, professional home wins. 

This is reflected in the prices: 1/5 and 2/9 are of no interest. Likewise the 1/2 Double. 

So I propose a sprinkling of Man City to beat Chelsea on the top. Pep has the scent of the title in his nostrils and Wednesday’s CL tie is a gimme, so the 4/6 is fair. And with two legs down by 7.30pm Saturday, it’ll mean we are sat on a 7/5 ticket on City to win at home on Sunday. A good place to be. 

  • Bet: Tottenham, Liverpool & Man City Treble at 7/5

Value of the Week

A 90th minute equaliser snatched 4/1 and 6/1 winning tickets out of our hand at Burnley last weekend. Largely thanks to referee Bobby Madley’s deft interception in midfield. 

That woulda coulda shoulda been Burnley’s seventh 1-0 win of ten this season. I’m prepared to go in again at 6/1. 

My Coupon Buster this week is Brighton v Arsenal. The ninth best home team v the ninth best away team. The Seagulls soaring, the Gunners misfiring. While it’s true that Arsenal have a record of pulling things out of the bag, the upcoming Milan trip is a big enough spanner in the works for me to have a punt on Brighton laying the boot in. 

  • Bet: Burnley to win 1-0 at 6/1
  • Bet: Brighton Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 9/2

TV Treble

Watch and earn with these three this weekend...

Burnley to beat Everton
Liverpool to beat Newcastle
Brighton v Arsenal – Both Teams to Score  

  • Bet: Treble at 21/5

Goal Scorers

Hot Shots:

  • Jamie Vardy is five from six and will enjoy the wide open space on Bournemouth’s beach. 3/1 First Goal.
  • Mo Salah has seven in six and five of them have been Liverpool’s last goal. Another Last Goal here pays 5/2.

Wild Cards:

  • Abdoulaye Doucoure has scored some big goals this season and might be due one in a pivotal match. 9/1 First Goal or 10/3 Anytime.
  • Heung-Min Son is a likely starter v Huddersfield and has back in the goals after a nine-match drought. 7/2 First Goal.

Offer 

Open a William Hill  account today with a £10 bet and get and instant £30 in free bets. Get stuck in here…

Matt Nesbitt has left the building.


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 29

Thursday, March 1 2018

 

Into the final lap now and there are six-pointers all over the place. In the Top Four, in the Bottom Six… Eight… or is it Ten. 

Only mid-table obscurities like Burnley, Everton, Leicester and Bournemouth are free from the nerve jangling – and even they are playing each other! 

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value out of the bookies. And any Long Shots are decent priced punts that have some statistical merit. 

All Scorecasts are priced up too.  

Sabrina, don’t just stare at it… eat it!

Saturday:
12.30pm Burnley v Everton

Burnley were just a minute or so away from breaking their 11-without-a-win hoodoo, until referee Bobby Madley made a key interception in midfield to set up Southampton’s equaliser. But surely nothing can go wrong this time…
Everton have lost their last four on the road and murmurs for Big Sam to be replaced have already started. His abrasive style of play is an acquired taste at the best of times, but when it only produces two wins from 12 and a measly 8pts from a possible 42 away from home it just hurts your eyes.
Burnley’s mid-season slump means they are now only 3pts ahead of Everton. Should be 6pts by Saturday afternoon.
Scorecast: 1-0 at 6/1.
Tap in: Burnley Draw No Bet at 4/6.
Smart Money: Burnley Win & Under 3.5 at 19/10
 
3pm Leicester City v Bournemouth
Like Burnley above them (for now) Leicester are tucked in the number 10 position. Just behind the big hitters in the Top Six, so no real pressure to deliver on a regular basis. And just ahead of the blood and thunder in mid-table, so they can play with a bit of freedom.  
Saturday’s visitors are aspiring to join that club but do have the unfortunate habit of urinating all over their snacks, just when you think have turned a corner. The late two-goal revival at home to Newcastle last time out might have put them on an upswing though, so I don’t see them leaving Leicester with nothing.
Scorecast: 1-1 at 6/1.
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 4/6.
Long Shot: Draw & Both Teams to Score at 7/2.
   
3pm Southampton v Stoke City
I think both of these could go down.
Both have got ugly sets of fixtures to contend with in the run-in: six of Southampton’s ten matches are away, Stoke play four of the Top Five. And both are, well, a bit rubbish.
Too much charity from the Saints has meant just one win in the last 16 matches. And that was against the surely already condemned West Brom. But points against Tottenham, Man United and Arsenal hint at more under the bonnet. 
Stoke’s resolve has stiffened under new boss Lambert, replacing defeats with draws (three in the last four). But they need to turn those into wins to stay afloat. 
Scorecast: 1-1 at 6/1.
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 10/3.
  
3pm Swansea City v West Ham
With a third – perhaps even a half – of the Premier League feeling the rabid threat of relegation nipping at their ankles, there will be six-pointers all over the place from here on in. Ooh, here’s one now.
Swansea’s recent good form would put them in the Top Six over the last six matches, but they were rocked by a four-goal slap at Brighton. They are three from three at home, including Arsenal and Liverpool scalps.
The Hammers are in decent nick too. Top Seven based on the last six, in fact. It’s not so pretty on the road – they’ve lost their last two and only managed one away win all season. Reckon Moyes would take a draw right now, but have an inkling Swansea might edge it.
Scorecast: 2-1 at 9/1.
Tap in: Swansea Draw No Bet at 8/11.
Smart Money: Swansea Win & Both Teams to Score at 9/2.

3pm Tottenham v Huddersfield Town
Spurs are building up a head of steam and you fancy the only thing that can stop the inevitable here is letting minds wander to Wednesday’s big one with Juventus. 
We can expect a bit of tinkering, especially as they have a vulnerable centre of defence at the mo – Alderweireld is out and Vertonghen a doubt. But anything less than 3pts would be a blow to Top Four hopes.
Huddersfield will be looking ahead too – to matches v Swansea, Palace, Newcastle, Brighton and Watford. That run will shape their season and determine whether they are back to play this fixture again next year. 
Scorecast: 2-0 at 5/1.
Tap in: Home Win at 2/11 (but don’t, just don’t).
Smart Money: Tottenham Win & Under 3.8 Goals at Evens.

3pm Watford v West Brom
If Watford could’ve chosen a fixture this weekend…
In truth, no one would quibble about West Brom at home right now. But Watford’s funny old season looks set to be steered away from disastrous, back towards decent again. Having veered off from exceptional, straight through good and careering headlong into frustrating. Back to back home wins v Chelsea and Everton (and likely here) will set up the Hornets for a tough run-in – they’ve got to go to Arsenal, Liverpool, Tottenham and Man United (oooff!). But it looks less of a Dead Man Walking scenario than it might have. 
Sadly the same cannot be said for West Brom. The off the pitch chaos tops Watford’s, but only a staying up specialist like Tony Pulis could save them now. Oh, hang on. Didn’t they… 
Scorecast: 2-1 at 8/1.
Smart Money: Watford Win & Both Teams to Score at 15/4.

5.30pm Liverpool v Newcastle United
It stands out as the home banker of the week, but things are rarely straightforward with these two…
Liverpool have Champions League business to attend to on Tuesday, but at 5-0 up it should be a cruise. So this will be the tune-up for their possible Runner-up Play-off against Man United next weekend. All of which is bad news for Newcastle.
Toon are on the up, no doubt. Three draws against mid-table bedfellows and a chest-pumping Man United win has given them a bit of momentum. But they have still got to negotiate four of the Top Six before they add up the points and that doesn’t allow for much wriggle room. I can’t see them upsetting Liverpool, but the last five visitors have scored at Anfield. So that’s a line of enquiry for us. 
Scorecast: 3-1 at 9/1.
Tap in: Home Win at 2/9.
Smart Money: Liverpool Win & Both Teams to Score at 33/20.

Sunday:
1.30pm Brighton v Arsenal

The Premier League’s 9th best home team plays the 9th best away team. 
I know, I know - lies, damn lies and statistics and all that. But while I’m at it…  Recent form (last six) also puts Brighton above their visitors. And yet the bookmakers make Arsenal odds-on favourites. Hmmm.
The Seagulls have won their last two at home, scoring seven goals in the process – as many as they managed in the previous eight at home. So their tails are up (Seagulls have tails, right?).
Arsenal have had a bit of a beating in all formats from all angles in recent weeks. Their one away win from the last seven was against Swedish pub team Ostersunds (Nordic for The Red Lion. Probably). The Gunners have form for pulling one out of the bag, but I’m tempted by the stats – and the value. 
Scorecast: 2-1 at 12/1.
Tap in: Brighton (+2) Match Handicap at 1/3
Smart Money: Brighton & Under 3.5 at 9/2.

4pm Man City v Chelsea  
When Man City went to the Bridge and dismantled the Champions in September, we all had a glimpse of what was to come. Since then predicting Man City matches has been all about judging what their opponents have got in them.  And Chelsea haven’t had much in the last couple of months on the road. Just one win in seven (v Brighton) and limp losses to Arsenal, Watford and Man United make it hard to see anything different here.
It’s all about business for Pep and City now, so expect as many clean sheets as 3s, 4s and 5-goal performances between now and the middle of May. Or perhaps end of May.
Anyway, one will probably do here. 
Scorecast: 2-0 at 15/2.
Tap in: Home Win at 8/13.
Smart Money: Man City Win & Both Teams to Score at 21/10. 

Monday:
8pm Crystal Palace v Man United  

Just 2pts from the last five matches is threatening to tag an unhappy ending onto Woy Hodgson’s wescue fairy tale. Their crippling injury list is ill-timed and a run-in consisting of three Top Five trials and at least five six-pointers is equally cruel. But if you lose nine of your first 11, thems the beats.
United have been functional rather than impressive on the road this season (possibly since Fergie, actually), so we know what to expect. Jose will back up the bus into position, leave inspector De Gea to handle any stray fares. Then rely on his galaxy of oddly lop-side, strangely languid and clearly bored super-duper stars to make the difference in the last half hour.       
Scorecast: 0-1 at 5/1. 
Tap in: Away Win at 8/15.
Smart Money: Draw/ Man United HT/ FT at 3/1.
Long Shot: 0-2 at 6/1.

Y’know those Coupon Busters I do for you…? Lunchtime tomorrow. 

Yeah?

Matt Nesbitt


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What we learned from Game Week 28

Tuesday, February 27 2018

 

Mixed bag of results over the weekend. Highlights were the Huddersfield & BTTS at 9/1 which sent West Brom down (more of that in a tick) and ‘Arry Kane sorting out a late 3/1 winner at Palace. Low lights were Southampton and the referee conspiring to snatch away 4/1 AND 6/1 winners in the final minute at Burnley. Grrr! 

Still, I’ll sort those pesky Saints out by the end of this post. Oh yeah. 

West Brom are down…

If Albion had anything at all in their ball-bag, Saturday was the time to show it. They didn’t. They rolled over and had their Huddersfield and now require snookers to stay up. It would take an 18pt miracle to stand any chance of survival, so six wins from ten matches. That’s 33 matches less than the last six took them. 

Funny old season for Jonny Evans. One minute he is the subject of a bidding war between Man City and Arsenal, the next he’s is an Uber driver in Spain. 

Where to Guv? The Etihad…? Nah, make that the Championship…    

And then there were two…

So if West Brom are gone, who will join them? Saturday’s big winners were Huddersfield and Brighton, coming out on top in the two six-pointers against Albion and Swansea. Both have handy home form too – a key ingredient in PL buoyancy. 

Huddersfield have averaged 1.7pts per match at home to teams outside the Top Five. And maintaining that on the run-in – v Swansea, Palace, Watford, Everton and Arsenal – would hit the 40pts mark.
And after landing us a 9/1 winner on Saturday, I’m all for another season of Terriers in the top flite. 

Brighton have averaged an even better 1.9pts in their unbeaten 11 home matches v non Top Five teams. Home form that puts them above Bournemouth and Burnley and comfortably Top Half for the season. 

The bunfight below…

The Seagull’s run-in (fly in, descent, whatever…) is less palatable than Huddersfield’s – Arsenal, Tottenham and Man United are still to visit (and there are ugly trips to Man City and Liverpool to negotiate). But if they can match the 8pts accumulated in their last four in their next ten, that’ll be 39pts. And a fighting chance.

Elsewhere, Stoke will need at least four wins (plus change), which will require an upset or two. City, Tottenham and Burnley are all due in town, with Arsenal and Liverpool trips still required. They face a final week 12-pointer of Palace at home and Swansea away. Oooff!

The season’s two great revivalists need to prove they haven’t peaked too early. If Palace can get through a vicious March with their dukes still up – Man United, Chelsea, Huddersfield and Liverpool are queueing up to make Woy swear – they’ll effectively have a six-match play-off with largely Bottom Third bedfellows. 

Swansea’s recent habits suggest they can get 12 of the likely 13pts required at home. And their next three v West Ham, Huddersfield and Southampton could take care of half of that haul. So long as they don’t get distracted by Wembley’s twin towers and a daft notion of winning the FA Cup. 

Saints alive?

Southampton are still involved in the cup too, of course. But from here, lifting the famous old trophy looks about as likely as getting 13pts from their remaining home matches (to hit the 40-mark). They certainly won’t get much juice out of Man City and Chelsea, so will need to at least match their average of 1.37pts from their six (count ‘em… SIX!) remaining away games. And personally I don’t see it.

That’ll learn them for snatching away our 4/1 and 6/1 winners out of our hands in the last minute at Burnley!

So it’s Southampton and Stoke to join the Baggies for me. Currently trading at 16/1. Worth a nibble, Badmen. 

Don't have nightmares,

Matt Nesbitt
 
  


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Coupon Busters - Game Week 28

Friday, February 23 2018

 

Let’s have a little shufty at the weekend’s Coupon Busters, shall we…?

Nine Premier League matches and an EFL Cup Final – which will be rerun at the Emirates on Thursday night – for us to sift through. 

Here’s how it looks from here…

Banker

Liverpool to beat West Ham and Leicester to beat Stoke are the stand out ‘bankers’. But 2/9 (on Liverpool) has no appeal although I fancy the Foxes to win the lunchtime fixture, it could be a struggle. So I’ll swerve the 7/10 on offer in favour of a more comfortable nailed-on 4/7 (1.57).

That’s what you’ll get for Man City to lift their first trophy. Take it. 

Long Shot

It’s been 11 without a win for Burnley, but I fancy this could be the end of that run. Six of their nine wins have ended 1-0 and at 13/2 in the Correct Score market, that’s worth a punt. 

Looking for a coupon buster, Huddersfield go to West Brom on the back to a four-goal blitz of a Bournemouth team in decent nick. Albion’s preparation has been less conventional and this match could make or break their season. If it’s break, you’ll get 9/1 on Huddersfield Win & Both Teams to Score. And that could look like great value come 4.45 Saturday.

TV Treble

Watch and earn with these three this weekend…

  1. Leicester to beat Stoke
  2. Tottenham to beat Palace
  3. Man City to beat Arsenal (EFL Cup)        Treble pays 13/4 (4.25)

Hot Shots

Looking to score this weekend? Here’s a few goal scorer bets so you can buy her a Babycham…

  • Jamie Vardy is five from five for Leicester and Stoke have conceded more than any other team. 16/5 on offer for the First Goal.
  • Mo Salah had six in seven and five of them have been Liverpool’s last goal. Another Last Goal here pays 13/5.
  • Marcus Rashford is due one. He has gone nine PL matches without a goal and even if he doesn’t start, he is Man United’s most likely deadline breaker. 13/2 is decent value.

Offer 

Sign up with William Hill and stake £10 on the Premier League this weekend and you’ll get £30 in Free Bets. Get stuck in here…

Dit your bread in,

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 28

Thursday, February 22 2018

 

Just the nine Premier League matches this weekend, so I’ve chucked in the EFL Cup Final too. You’re welcome.

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value out of the bookies. And any Long Shots are decent priced punts that have some statistical merit. 

All Scorecasts are priced up too.  

Tuck in…

Saturday:
12.30pm Leicester City v Stoke City

Leicester’s season is over, really. They are comfortably trapped between the ceiling of seventh place and the trap door to relegation quicksand of 11th. But Stoke would swap places right now…
Just 2pts from the last eight away trips has left the Potters up to their pods in Bottom Three bother. Paul Lambert has tightened things up a bit - their two wins and a draw in the last four is their best form of the season (no, really!). But not enough to suggest getting anything out of this one.   
The Foxes have are pretty sly at home v teams outside the Top Four, with six wins from nine (D2 L1) – five of them To Nil. Make that seven and six.
Scorecast: 2-0 – 7/1.
Tap in: Home Win at 7/10.
Smart Money: Leicester & Under 3.5 Goals at 29/20.
 
3pm Bournemouth v Newcastle United
Scatty lot, these two…
Just when you thought Bournemouth’s total football (on a shoestring) had played them into a nice mid-table cruise-to-the-finish-line mode, they get their pants pulled down and their Huddersfield. (That’s a play on words, by the way. And a bloody good one. You’re welcome).  
Likewise, Newcastle’s outmuscling of Man United last time out forces you to wonder whether some players are picking their matches. So both sets of players are under a bit of character scrutiny here. But both are in the tidy form – just one defeat in eight for Toon and 15pts from a possible 24 for Bournemouth. I reckon both would take a point apiece.
Scorecast: 1-1 – 11/2.
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 3/4.
   
3pm Brighton v Swansea City 
A proper six-pointer at the Amex. Brighton punch their weight at home, only losing to Top Four teams so far. But their aversion to scoring goals and keeping clean sheets means they draw too many matches. Well, perhaps it’s too soon to say categorically ‘too many’, but if they fancy Premier League status next season this needs to be a 3-pointer rather than another 1-pointer.
Swansea are a team on the up, but they love a draw. They are five from five on the road, including three FA Cup ties against lower league opposition. Suspect they would take another here though. And I reckon they’ll get one.
Scorecast: 1-1 – 5/1.
Tap in: Brighton Draw No Bet at 4/9.
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 5/2.
  
3pm Burnley v Southampton
Surely Dyche can’t keep a lid on it if Burnley don’t win this one…
Despite a run of 11 without a win, Sean’s gravelly post-match mood has been unfailingly positive. Perhaps he’s in on the dark sorcery that has kept Burnley in 7th spot even though their last win was 12 weeks ago. It puts them ten places above Southampton – and they’ve only lost once at home to a team below them. But you wouldn’t put the farm on them at the moment.
The Saints are unbeaten in five on the road, winning their last two (all comps). Okay, okay, they were both against West Brom but they have only surrendered maximum points once (to Liverpool) in their last eight. But I can’t keep backing draws with 2/1 available on offer for the Home Win… 
Scorecast: 1-0 – 6/1.
Tap in: Double Chance - Burnley or Draw at 1/2.
Long Shot: Burnley & Under 2.5 Goals at 4/1.

3pm Liverpool v West Ham
Before you throw the deeds to your house, the car and the kids over the bookmaker’s counter on the banker of the week Home Win, consider this…
West Ham are unbeaten in their last three trips to Anfield (W1 D2). But have shipped eight in the last two at home, so perhaps just the car and the kids - ‘when the fun stops, stop’ and all that.  
They are already talking new contracts and summer recruitment at West Ham, but Moyes’ rescue mission is not quite complete yet. Like everyone in the Bottom Half they are only two defeats away from the drop zone. And this looks like one of them. And could put Liverpool into second.  
Scorecast: 3-1 – 9/1.
Tap in: Home Win at 2/9.
Smart Money: Liverpool & BTTS at 17/10.

3pm West Brom v Huddersfield Town
Could be Taxi for Pardew this weekend. Or maybe not. Hear me out…
This is the first of six winnable matches for Albion. Leicester, Burnley, Swansea at home, Watford and Burnley away present an opportunity for 18pts which would almost certainly be enough to stay up. But there is no room for error, because they then face Man United, Liverpool and Tottenham in final month. And that lot won’t be mucking about on the run-in. So the meters running…
Huddersfield will have plans for the 3pts on offer too, of course. But a pitiful 5pts from 12 away trips – failing to score in ten of them – says Home Win to me. And the bookies agree.
Scorecast: 2-1 – 8/1.
Tap in: West Brom Draw No Bet at 4/11.
Long Shot: West Brom & BTTS at 4/1.

5.30pm Watford v Everton
Like Burnley, Watford have remained remarkably buoyant this season despite just two wins in 14. They were still clinging to the Top Half until losing to West Ham last time out (and currently sit 11th). Another couple of defeats could see them drop over the edge though, straight into the sticky relegation bog below.   
They will be encouraged by Everton’s away ‘form’ – just 1pt and two goals from the last four, with 11 going the other way. The recent five shipped at Arsenal will cause most concern, particularly as three came just 15 minutes into Big Sam’s experimental back-five defensive system. A worse set up than the one that cost him the England job.       
Scorecast: 1-2 – 10/1.
Smart Money: Draw & BTTS at 17/5.

Sunday:
12pm Crystal Palace v Tottenham Hotspur

Whisper it, but Palace are only a couple of bad results away from getting dragged right back into the dogfight they seemed to have crawled quietly away from. 
Just 2pts from the last four is as bad as it’s been since the Woy’s wescue mission started way back in October. And their cruel injury list is matched by a punishing schedule in the next month. After Spurs, it’s Man United, Chelsea and Liverpool to come in March.  
Tottenham have drawn their last five bizarrely, but the diversity of opposition and agenda make it a tricky form line to read – Rochdale, Juventus, Newport, Liverpool… Pfft!
Scorecast: 0-2 – 13/2.
Smart Money: Draw/ Tottenham HT/FT at 3/1.
Long Shot: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 9/2.

2.05pm Man United v Chelsea  
The technical area will be the place to be for this one…
Neither manager, nor their teams have looked particularly convincing recently. Or all season for that matter. But the numbers tell us that it’s the second best home team v the third best away team. Despite the fact that Chelsea’s only away wins in the last seven have been at Brighton and Huddersfield. But they enjoy locking horns with United, winning eight of the last 14 (D5 L1). Not many can match that.    
Of course, Jose will be pumped up even more than usual with Conte in the opposite corner. With the Sevilla trip and a day less to prepare, ready-made excuses. 
Scorecast: 1-1 - 5/1.
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 14/5.

4.30pm Arsenal v Man City – EFL Cup Final
With the domestic treble – and possible quadruple – up in smoke, this might take on extra importance. Or maybe just the taste of defeat. Or maybe just the thought of getting their mitts on some silverware. But this looks City’s for the taking. The wide open space of Wembley will be right up De Bruyne and Silva’s alley. 
Arsenal have struggling away from the Emirates, barely matching the likes of Bournemouth, Newcastle and Southampton on the road. I know this isn’t an away match, but City will dominate the ball. And Arsenal’s plan B is more of a D-minus. 
Scorecast: 1-3 – 10/1.
Tap in: Man City to win at 4/7.
Smart Money: Man City & BTTS at 7/4. 

Back on Friday with a look at the weekend's Coupon Busters.

Don't touch that dial,

Matt Nesbitt


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Coupon Busters - FA Cup 5th Rnd

Friday, February 16 2018


FA Cup week means a week of… ahem… warm weather training* in Spain for plenty of the Premier League.

(*And if you think these camps are just an excuse for drinking, golf and off-the-record contract/ bonus negotiations, you’re bang wrong. Not many play golf these days.)

From a punting point of view it hasn’t left us much to get our grubby mitts on. Six of the eight Fifth Round ties span the divisions and even Huddersfield V Man United fits the giant killing bill. 

The bookies have got it wrapped pretty tight, so we’re going to get any value without going out on a limb. But this is where my paper round money will be going this weekend…

Banker

Swansea to beat Sheffield Wednesday at 5/4 – Wednesday are only this 16th best team in the Championship at home. (FA Cup aside) they’ve only won two of the last 16 and have no bidness being the Sixth Round. The Swans meanwhile are fairly flying. This will be ten unbeaten. Get on.   

Long Shot

And it is a long shot, so don’t put the kids on it. But you’ll get a smidgeon better than 10/1 backing all the giants to avoid a killing this weekend. Plus, if it still alive come Monday night it will add a bit of spice to the Wigan v Man City match.

  1. Leicester City to beat Sheffield United
  2. Chelsea to beat Hull City
  3. Swansea City to beat Sheffield Wednesday
  4. Brighton to beat Coventry City
  5. Man United to beat Huddersfield Town
  6. Tottenham to beat Rochdale
  7. Man City to beat Wigan 


TV Treble

You might not know this, but in various bets on these pages I have recommended Chelsea to keep a clean sheet three times. And three times have got it wrong (yes Watford, Newcastle and Huddersfield. I’m looking at you…). 

But eight out of nine wins To Nil v the bottom seven in the PL is urging me to go in again v Hull. Who are the third worst away scorers in the Championship. I’m adding Tottenham and Man United - who will have had a week of Jose drills after a couple of shockers recently - in a TV Treble that pays 15/2.   

  1. Chelsea Win to Nil
  2. Tottenham Win to Nil
  3. Man United Win to Nil

Have a Bad one,

Matt Nesbitt


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What we learned from Game Week 27

Tuesday, February 13 2018

 

That Matt Nesbitt, he’s just like Man United/ Arsenal/ Bournemouth [choose one] and to a lesser extent Everton/ Burnley/ Watford (choose another].

You just start thinking you can rely on him and he pulls a Phil Jones on you…

It was a bad weekend, Badmen. With a few bad calls and a bit of bad luck. 

I’ll take responsibility for swerving the Tottenham and Liverpool Wins, in favour of the better value Both Teams to Score picks. Greedy. A Chinese burn has been administered. 

But I stand by West Brom to score at Chelsea (they should’ve). And our cause wasn’t helped by Sturridge’s brittle hamstring pinging moments into the match. 

And I’d back the same Bournemouth and Man United bets if they played the same match again tomorrow. 

But instead we’ve got a much more glamourous midweek to tackle, which I’ll get onto in a minute…

You’re looking smart…

Of course, you might’ve collected this weekend. And I sincerely hope you did. 

Because every Badman bets differently. You might just follow Tap-ins, or Smart Bets, or not get out of bed for less than a Long Shot. You might pick and choose.

Last week everyone was snorting their Sherbert Dib-Dabs off the bookies tits. The two previous weeks it was the Tap-in merchants who were hosing rentable ladies in Babycham.   

But overall it is the Smart Bettors who have had the most cake rubbed in their backs. We’re 5pts in front since we tweaked the format, so if you’re wavering on which category fits best – it’s the Smart move.

And here’s another…

An Old Lady that is worth a punt…

Tottenham tackle Juventus tonight in the Champions League. And while – quite rightly – all the talk is about Harry Kane; how great he is, how many zillion pounds he is worth and how he is DEFINITELY going to win the World Cup for England… (well, perhaps not yet. But you wait until the summer).

There are a couple of things that you might not – and definitely should – be aware of about Tottenham’s opponents, Juventus.

NOTE: I am writing this ahead of the first leg, so putting it out there – like a Huddersfield substitute. But whatever happens in Turin, I think this is valid. Where was I? Oh yeah…

Juventus and Napoli are pissing Serie A. Juve are currently playing second fiddle, a point off the top but 14pts ahead of third place. Which is relative, I know. But get this…

Juventus have conceded…ahem… once in their last 15 matches. Once. In 15

They’ve also won their last ten and only tasted defeat once in 22 (18 D3 L1). And let’s not forget they have reached two of the last three finals, losing to Real Madrid last season (who weren’t bad) and Barcelona in 2015 (also reasonable). 

However, Juventus are currently trading at 16/1 to win the Champions League. And that, Badmen, is value. 

It’s three times the price of Barca and Bayern (5/1), but I’d call it closer to Even Money if they were going head-to-head with either team over two legs. They’ve got more pedigree than Man City (too short at 10/3) and PSG (also 5/1), who look capable of taking care of Real (8s).  

Still not feeling it? Okay, one last point…

Juventus are currently priced the same as Liverpool and Man United to lift the trophy. Worth a punt in my view.  

Ciao for now.

Matt Nesbitt

UPDATE: Wednesday 14th...

Thought I'd take a welcome break from opening Valentine's cards to update on Juventus v Spurs.

Juve's price went down to single figures on Betfair at 2-0 up. But is now as big as 28/1 in places. If they can get past Tottenham, I'd still fancy them to go to the last four - and then you'd have a very tradable price. 

 


 


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Coupon Busters - Game Week 27

Friday, February 9 2018

 

Oi oi, Badmen. I found nearly a five in loose change down the back of the settee while I was doing the housework, so I thought I’d try to turn it into £50.

Here’s how…

Match Results

  1. Tottenham Win & BTTS
  2. Liverpool Win & BTTS            £1 Double returns £10.50

Both Teams to Score

  1. Tottenham v Arsenal
  2. West Ham v Watford             £1 Double returns £2.50
  3. Everton v Palace                   £1 Treble returns £5
  4. Southampton v Liverpool       £1 Four-fold returns £8

Draws

  1. Everton v Palace
  2. Stoke v Brighton
  3. Swansea v Burnley
  4. West Ham v Watford            £1.10p Yankee returns £26.85 (any 2 pays £4.50).


*In this context a Yankee is not a racist, pussy-grabbing con man with a Stars and Stripes on his lapel and an unruly shrub of Cheetos Shredded Wheat on his head. It is 11 bets in one – six Doubles, four Trebles and a Four-fold. A 10p Yankee bet costs £1.10p – 11 x 10p bets = £1.10p.

Cha cha chang chang,

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 27

Thursday, February 8 2018

 

The weekend has rolled around again. Never fails, does it.

With it comes ten Premier League puzzles. All tricky. Some with a couple of pieces missing. But let’s have a go, shall we…

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value out of the bookies. And any Long Shots are decent priced punts that have some statistical merit. 

All Scorecasts are priced up too.  

Saturday:
Tottenham v Arsenal

Have you torn up your form book? And thrown it out of the window? It’s okay, I don’t mind sharing…
Tottenham have revved up for the derby swatting aside Everton and Man United at home and wrestling an equally impressive point out of Liverpool. My biggest worry is the early kick off as Spurs tend to start slowly.
Arsenal have been shocking on the road all season. Like, just a point better than Newcastle bad. But a goal (Aubameyang) and three assists (Mkhitaryan) from the new boys in their first outing will have them pumped. The Gunners’ last eight matches have seen goals at both ends. So that’s the place to start…  
Scorecast: 2-1 - 15/2.
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 4/9.
Smart Money: Tottenham Win & BTTS at 11/5.

Everton v Crystal Palace
Not so much of the ‘Saviour Sam’ being banded about Allardyce these days. He’s back to just being Big.
That’s what one win in nine matches does for you, I s’pose. But they punch their weight at home, winning seven of their eight v teams outside the Top Seven. 
Palace fall into that category, of course. But have some pretty consistent away stats themselves v the Premier Leagues also rans: just one defeat from seven. Only one win too, but after going eight away games without a goal, they’ve hit eight in five and look good for at least another at Goodison. 
Scorecast: 1-1 - 5/1. 
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at Evens. 
Smart Money: Draw & BTTS at 7/2.

Stoke City v Brighton
It's early yet, but it looks like back to the bad old days for Stoke. They have been outplayed in Paul Lambert’s first four games in charge, yielding just seven corners, three goals and 4pts. 
The upside is, things have gone well against Bottom Third teams – four wins from five at home. A fifth from six puts them level with Saturday’s visitors.
Brighton are another team relying on their form against Bottom Third – actually, they’ve taken points off all but one of the Bottom Half so far.  All 9pts on the road have come from teams above Stoke, so they won’t want to walk away from this six-pointer with nothing.  
Scorecast: 1-1 - 5/1.
Tap in: Under 2.5 Goals at 4/7.
Long Shot: Draw/ Stoke HT/FT is value at 19/5.

Swansea City v Burnley
Swansea have taken flight in recent weeks and are currently eight unbeaten, winning the last four at home. Even taking lower division clubs out of the picture, wins over Liverpool and Arsenal are not to be quacked at. (Swans quack, right?) But those two wins make up 6pts of the 8pts in total taken from ten matches v the Top Eight. So let’s not count our… erm… signets before they hatch.
Burnley haven’t won since early December. But have only lost once on the road and their level of performance hasn’t dropped far below their early season form. Only the Top Five have been better on the road too, so I can’t see them leaving empty handed.  There might even be a bit of value in the Away Win…
Scorecast: 1-1 – 5/1.
Tap in: Burnley Draw No Bet at 6/5. 
Long Shot: Burnley Win & BTTS at 7/1.

West Ham v Watford
These two are among, ooh…perhaps 11 teams that are a couple of wins away from the warm blanket of mid-table. But likewise just two defeats from shitty, wet quicksand of the relegation zone. 
West Ham are one of the few you’d think have too much to go down. But having too much ‘at stake’ isn’t quite the same. Defeat in the six-pointer at Brighton last week was their first in seven but they’ve only beaten one team outside the Bottom Four. 
Watford probably cashed in the jackpot of a Chelsea side in disarray on Monday, but it could be a turning point in getting their wheels back in the slots after a chaotic couple of months. They need something here too, because their next five away trips take in four of the Top Six. And then they add up the points.  
Scorecast: 2-2 – 12/1.
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 8/11.
Smart Money: Draw & BTTS at 13/4. 

Man City v Leicester City
Wonder if Riyad Mahrez will turn up for this one? Shame really, ‘cos Leicester could do with him. That is, the one that scored six in his last 13 matches. Not the one that sulked through the previous 15 (three goals) because he didn’t get a transfer in the summer. He would only be keeping things warm for a fully fit Sane, Sterling, Jesus et al anyway. 
Only Everton have denied City maximum points so far and the upcoming Champions League appointment (in Basel) shouldn’t be weighing too heavily on anyone’s mind. So there’s no real case to be made for anything but a Home Win. 
It’s a free hit for Leicester, with three winnable PL matches to follow. So the only question is can they score? 
Scorecast: Yes. 3-1 – 9/1. 
Tap in: Man City (-1) Match Handicap at 4/7.
Smart Money: Man City Win & BTTS at 8/5.

Sunday:
Huddersfield Town v Bournemouth

Watching Huddersfield roll over to first Liverpool and then Man United could be written off as savvy management of expectation. If it wasn’t for the three batterings to much more modest opposition immediately previous, that is. And the three before that yielded just 3pts. So - I’m afraid – from here it looks like they should get comfortable in the Bottom Three. 
Bournemouth have rarely been in fine fettle in their Premier League tenure. Unbeaten in seven, winning home and away and the late turnaround against a stubborn Stoke last week stunk of a team full of beans.  If there’s an Away Win this weekend, it’ll be here.
Scorecast: 1-3 – 22/1.
Tap In: Bournemouth Draw No Bet at 4/6.
Smart Money: Bournemouth Win & BTTS at 17/4.

Newcastle United v Man United
Ah, what was I saying about Away Wins…?
Say what you like about Mourinho and his bus parking skills, but his beep beep beep beep is music to punter’s ears. The defeat at Tottenham interrupted a run on seven clean sheets and six Wins To Nil. You know what you’re getting with Jose. Outside the Top Five, United have taken 54pts from a possible 63pts and are starting to look as comfortable in ‘Park’ as they are in City’s slipstream. 
And Rafa is almost as reliable, fact. Just 2pts from 12 matches v Top Half teams might seem a bit shit, but as long as it is matched with enough from the Bottom Half it simply means they punch their weight. And so far, 23pts from 14 matches is just about on track. 15 more required. But none here.
Scorecast: 0-2 – 13/2.
Tap in: Man United to Win at 4/6.
Smart Money: Man United Win To Nil at 8/5.
Long Shot: Man United Win, BTTS: NO, Over 10.5 Corners & Under 35.5 Booking Points at 8/1 (Coral #YourCall)

Southampton v Liverpool
These are undoubtedly two of the Premier League’s scattiest teams. It’s perhaps not surprising with the amount of shared DNA over recent seasons. But that doesn’t make it any easier to predict.
Southampton have plenty of ability in their ranks, but ‘shop window players do have a habit of picking their matches. But this is likely to be on the list. One clean sheet in 18 suggests the Saints will have to outscore Liverpool though.
Which will suit Klopp’s lot down to the ground. Their only clean sheets in the last ten have come against (then) Bottom Two teams. And in a goal-fest you can’t go against the visitors.
Scorecast: 1-2 – 8/1.
Tap In: Both Teams to Score at 4/6.
Smart Money: Liverpool & BTTS at 23/10.

Monday:
Chelsea v West Brom

Hmm, if you fancy an Away Win place it in a double with Conte to be sacked the following morning. 
The double bubble of defeats to Bournemouth and Watford made this as tough a week as poor Antonio has faced at Chelsea. And he has the potential banana skin of Hull at home to negotiate next week. Oh and then Barcelona, Man United and Man City. So, er, let’s file this one under: Must Win.
West Brom might argue that slipping to bottom of the table made their week worse, but it’s all relative. Pardew will be aware of a run of six winnable matches after this one, but with 20-odd points required from 12 games he can’t afford to be fussy. So they will have a go here. But even at 7/1, I can’t make a case.
Scorecast: 2-1 – 15/2.
Smart Money: Chelsea Win & BTTS at 11/5. 
Long Short: Daniel Sturridge to Score at Anytime at 7/2.

Play nice.

Matt Nesbitt


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What we learned from Game Week 26

Tuesday, February 6 2018

 

Betting smart is the way forward…

But we knew that. A decent set of results at the weekend underlined precisely where the value is when it comes to tackle the weekend coupons. Five out of six Tap-ins generated a svelte profit of just 1.3pts, whereas five out of seven Smart Bets stuffed 10.62pts down our cleavage. 

That’s the equivalent of an 11/8 winner v 10/1 winner in hard currency. No contest. Like Watford v Chelsea…

That’s why they call it the blues…

Chelsea have announced that Antonio Conte will ‘not be sacked in the wake of the defeat at Watford’. Of course, all that means is he will be picking the team against West Brom next Monday. And he needs to get it right. Because if he manages to dodge that bullet, there are four more piss-dipped, barbwire-wrapped, ‘A.C.’ engraved ones on the way. 

First up, it's Hull at home in the FA Cup. A match that’s unwinnable in the eyes of the fans, the board and the football world in general. Plus, if it has gone wonky in the dressing and the players want him gone, this is the match they can do it.

Next up it’s Barcelona at the Bridge. Then consecutive trips to Man United and City. Ouch.  

If Antonio makes it to April without seeing the inside of a Russian salt-mine he will have done well.

You’re in safe hands…

Now, I’m not complaining – I enjoy my work. Sitting on my skinny white arse writing about football and betting is all I’m really qualified – or prepared – to do. But there are downsides. Working weekends is one, not really getting a break between August and May is another.

Which means you miss out on valuable family time…

 

 

Ha Ha ZING! Got ya! 

I'm joking, of course – I like to spend all (ALL, I say – every last bit) of my spare time in the company of dead-eyed bar staff and taxi drivers. 

But my point is, I feel a responsibility to provide a level of service to my employers and subscribers that I couldn’t possibly pass on to anyone else. Or ask anyone to cover me, not even for one weekend.

I am, however, talking out of my arse. Our own Ben Dinnery backed Watford to beat Chelsea. At 5/1! While I said Away Win and cost everyone money, so it was Ben toking on a fat cigar rolled on the thighs of a virgin this weekend. Probably.

So if I do happen to go AWOL, you’ll be in safe hands Badmen. 

Head for the Hills…

Oh and while I’m on, I’ve had a few of you asking where is the best bookie to place your bets. The truth is, all the big hitters are much of a muchness when it comes to choice of bets, speed of pricing up and value. But for me William Hill are consistently the best at all three and provide good offers.

Plus, they are offering £30 in Free Bets if you stake £10 at the mo.  Dip your bread in…

Later skaters,

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 26

Friday, February 2 2018


Well thank God that’s over.

Not Transfer Deadline Day, I fucking love it – but having midweek fixtures happening in and around it didn’t only upset Chelsea’s miserable old Conte. I’m blaming a shocking set of result on it too. 

Hopefully I won’t need an excuse for the weekend…

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value out of the bookies. And any Long Shots are decent priced punts that have some statistical merit. 

All Scorecasts are priced up too. 

Sing it, fellas…

Saturday:
Burnley v Man City

There are only five places but 33pts between these two. And, of course, a million miles. And a zillion pounds.
How Burnley have managed to stay in 7th place despite eight matches without a win - and just one lonely point from the last four, by the way – says more about the Premier League than it does Burnley. But it can’t go on forever.
It will persist at least another 90 minutes though, I suspect. City are on a dodgy run themselves – just one point from their last two away matches. I doubt Pep is sweating, but they will have to work for the win at Burnley. 
Tap in: Burnley (+3) Match Handicap at 4/11.
Scorecast: A steady 0-2 – 11/2.
 
Bournemouth v Stoke City
After a 3-0 win at Chelsea and beating Arsenal in their last home match, this should be a gimme. If only it was that simple. For one, Stoke are under new stewardship and look a different proposition already. Two clean sheets and 4pts against Huddersfield and Watford is nowt to write home about, but a step in the right directions. Getting something at Bournemouth will be another.
Eddie Howe’s liking for attractive football means they ship far too many goals – just two clean sheets at home – but they have been pretty efficient v the Bottom Half. Only two defeats from 12 is solid, but two wins from five at home needs to improve. Starting here.
Smart Money: Bournemouth Win & Both Teams to Score at 14/5.
Scorecast:  A tight 2-1 – 15/2. 

Brighton v West Ham
The Seagulls are one of the most consistent teams in the division, pretty much exactly punching their weight. They’ve taken points from every home match v teams outside the Top Six and only lost twice on the road to Bottom Half teams. Unfortunately for them, West Ham look to have the measure of Bottom Six teams this season, winning five (and drawing one) of their eight matches. 
One of their two defeats was a 0-3 drubbing by Brighton. A bit out of character for both.  
So, factoring all of that in and taking away the number you first though of… I can’t see a winner. Oh and they have played out six draws in their last nine between them.
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 5/2.
Scorecast: Looks like a 1-1 – 5/1

Leicester City v Swansea City
After another multi-million pound move has been snatched from out of his wallet, the green-eyed Mahrez might be due for a spell as the incredible sulk again. Shame because Claude had got him looking like… well, a Man City player again. Until their Deadline Day stumble, Leicester were unbeaten in six with just one goal conceded. A home match against the division’s ugly ducklings should be just the tonic…
But Swansea will have other ideas after consecutive wins over Liverpool and Arsenal. They are unbeaten in four on the road too (all comps) and will be boosted by the return of prodigal duckling Andre Ayew. Could be a bit of value on offer here.
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at Evens.
Smart Money: Draw & Both Teams to Score at 4/1.
Scorecast: Has the look of a 2-2 – 16/1.

Man United v Huddersfield Town
Two teams that surrendered meekly in their last outing. The life drained out of United alarmingly quickly once Corporal Jones had lashed in Tottenham’s second. Don’t panic, don’t panic – we’re back at home next. And very effective they have been too, dropping just 4pts all season – both in Christmas week. Anything less than three decisive points here and all of a sudden Top Four starts to look like a scramble. 
Huddersfield rolled over at home to Liverpool as if they were saving themselves for something. But I don’t suppose it was United, even though they have beaten them once already. Twice would be silly.  
Tap in: Home Win at 1/7.
Smart Money: Man United Win to Nil at 4/7.
Long Shot: Correct Score 4-0 – 15/2.
Scorecast: Or maybe 3-0 – 5/1.

West Brom v Southampton
Funny week for the Baggies. They hit their best form of the season – three wins from four (all comps) – win away at Liverpool and help snatch one of their players as they left. But end the week at the Bottom of the Premier League. Things look better for shiz, but they need to get into Swansea’s slipstream if they are going to play their way out of trouble. Their home form hasn’t been the problem – they’ve only lost three times, all to Top Four teams. Although seven of the other nine matches ended level. So with Southampton sitting three points north as things stand, this qualifies as a must win.
Of course, the Saints will be thinking much the same thing. They are 12 without a win but draws with Arsenal, Spurs and Man United in that run suggests they are guilty of picking their games. Both teams love a draw but I have a feeling West Brom will edge it.
Tap in: West Brom Draw No Bet at 7/10.
Long Shot: West Brom & Both Teams to Score at 9/2.
Scorecast: A tight 2-1 – 9/1.

Arsenal v Everton
Real Madrid have BBC, Barcelona had MSN and now Arsenal have a frontline of Lacazette, Mkhitaryan, Aubameyang and Ozil and they can boast about LMAO.
They are still too Jekyll and Hyde though. Second only to Man City at home this season, but you can’t help but have doubts about their soft centre. Especially when tough nuts like Everton are in town. They will of course bring Theo Walcott with them, fresh from his match winning brace in midweek. Only two teams have been worse on the road and ten matches v Top Seven teams has yielded just 3pts so far. 
The bookies have loaded into the home win and I’m not going to back against it. But can’t help thinking this will be an ugly one for the home team. So let’s do this…   
Tap In: Arsenal Win at 3/10.
Smart Money: Arsenal Win & Both Teams to Score at 2/1.
Scorecast: A hard fought 2-1.

Sunday:
Crystal Palace v Newcastle United

Only a point separates the teams, but the mood at Palace will be much the better. Only Arsenal have beaten them in the last nine matches and 7pts from their last four at home has them rubbing form shoulders with the likes of Chelsea and Man United. And you’d back them to see off Newcastle.
But hold on… The Geordies’ away form is only a point worse than Man City’s over the last four, because they too have rallied since Christmas. The truth is, they punch their weight – 22pts from 12 matches in the Bottom Eight v 2pts from 13 matches against teams above. Palace are right on the cusp, but will have a little too much for Toon. 
Tap in: Palace Draw No bet at 4/9.
Long Shot: Palace Win & Both Teams to Score at 7/2.
Scorecast: I’m thinking 2-1 – 8/1.

Liverpool v Tottenham 
We all know about Tottenham’s record away to Top Four teams – just four wins in their last 96 attempts. But it wasn’t so long ago that being 2-0 up against Man United at half-time meant they were in for a good hiding. This Spurs team are made of sterner stuff and have already stuck four past Liverpool this season. If they can score first I can’t see them beaten.
Liverpool seem to be over the wobble that saw them beaten by the PL’s bottom two teams in a week. But, like Spurs, sometimes meet their match when trading blows with the big boys. Just one win from five (D2 L2) v the Top Five so far and a draw will keep their noses in front for now. 
Tap In: Both Teams to Score at 1/2.
Smart Money: Draw & Both Teams to Score at 13/4.
Long Shot: Harry Kane Last Goal at 4/1.
Scorecast: An entertaining 1-1 – 13/2.

Monday:
Watford v Chelsea

Hmm, it’s been a funny old season for Watford. Their 15pts from the first eight matches seems a very long time ago. Since then the wheels have come off, although they seem to have got lodged in mid-table – which is no mean feat after just one win in 12. That bubble is starting to fray though – defeat here could have them in the Bottom Three. It’s too early to get a steer on the new man in charge, but their clean sheet at Stoke was their first November.
Chelsea have kicked the Hornets’ nest with a 4-2 win already this term, but are in an odd mood so far in 2018. Five draws, two wins and two defeats suggest something is wrong but only Man City have been better on the road. And while I’m not as bullish as the bookies, you can’t really back against them.  
Smart Money: Chelsea Win & Both Teams to Score at 5/2.
Scorecast: Just enough 1-2 – 7/1.
 

Yeah?

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 25: Wednesday

Wednesday, January 31 2018

 

Winners from all three matches last night, with the 5/1 Correct Score taking the cake at West Ham. Seven more to tackle tonight - if you can drag yourself away from Transfer Deadline Day… 

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value from the match. And any Long Shots are decent priced (usually 3/1 or bigger) punts that have some statistical merit. 

Scorecasts are priced up too. 

Here me now...

Wednesday:
Chelsea v Bournemouth

Antonio is a bit of a miserable Conte these days, isn’t he? We’re led to believe that his ‘orrible boss has a penchant for lanky strikers that no-one else wants. But I daresay Eddie Howe would swap squads. 
Chelsea’s 3-0 swatting of Newcastle was their first home win in four but you’ve got to think their flair players will breach Bournemouth’s defence. Everybody bar Newcastle and Swansea have.  So can they score? And how many. Top Six evidence suggests no. And Chelsea have been efficient v the Bottom Third – 30 from 33pts.
Tap in: Chelsea Win at 2/7
Smart Money: Chelsea Win & Under 3.5 at 6/5
Long Shot: Chelse Win, BTTS: YES, Under 11.5 Corners & Under 35.5 Booking Points (Coral #YourCall) at 4/1
Scorecast: Same as the EFL Cup - 2-1 – 15/2
 
Everton v Leicester City
Leicester are worthy favourites here. They look energised, confident and – Mahrez aside, perhaps -  their big players look variously settled in and settled down. And get this – they’ve only conceded once in six matches. That’s bad news for Everton, because no amount of Big Sam’s defensive drills and performance data will help them hit the net. Best they can muster here will be a draw, I fancy. 
Tap in: Leicester Draw No Bet at 4/5
Smart Bet: Leicester Win & BTTS at 11/2 (Price Boost at Coral)
Long Shot: Leicester Win, BTTS: Yes, Under 10.5 Corners & Over 35.5 Booking Points at 14/1
Scorecast: Leicester on points but 1-1 – 5/1  

Newcastle United v Burnley
Dyche Dyche baby has been constantly talking up his players during a tough spell – no wins in eight, four defeats on the spin. Keeping confidence buoyant for when the punishing run of fixtures cleared and winnable ones turned up again. Admittedly, Huddersfield and Palace came and went with just a point to show, but I can’t see them leaving with nothing here. Bit of value in the away win too. 
Tap in: Double Chance: Burnley or Draw at 7/10
Smart Money: Burnley Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 10/3
Long Shot: Draw/ Burnley HT/FT at 13/2
Scorecast: Burnley need this so 0-1 – 15/2

Southampton v Brighton
Brighton took the stiffs to Boro in the cup so obviously fancy this one. Not that that will send shivers down Southampton’s spine, the FA Cup win was their first on the road in six and only the third all season.
The Saints are a funny lot. Moody. A punters’ nightmare.  Pick their matches. And draw a lot of  games. 
Tap in: Pff! Not on my watch.
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 14/5
Long Shot: 
Scorecast: An edgy 0-0 – 13/2

Man City v West Brom
West Brom beat Liverpool in the FA Cup… Liverpool beat Man City in the PL… So pile into the 20/1 Away Win, right? Well, no, It doesn’t work like that sadly. But those odds are genuine, by the way. 
Albion have turned a corner since New Year and aren’t far away from being the mid-table team we all thought they were. This is a free hit too. Their next five home matches will save their season, not this one. 
The trick with City is pitching just how arsed they are. Sunday’s Cup win was their first clean sheet in seven and there have only been four from their 12 at home all season.  And West Brom have score in their last five on the road, so let’s go for it shall we?
Tap in: Man City to Win at 1/7
Smart Money: Man City Win & BTTS at 2/1
Long Shot: 
Scorecast: Let’s go 3-1 – 10/1

Stoke Cty v Watford
Watford are clinging to a Top Half despite one win in 11. No, really. But they are only one defeat away from level pegging with fourth bottom Stoke. And two away from rock bottom.  So this can be called a six-pointer between two teams eight places apart. 
Neither manager has had enough time to make it all the way to the drawing board, if he even thinks he needs to. Even the Over 2.5 Goals banker is in question. Not sure either team is good enough to win it, so nothing silly here.
Tap In: Stoke Draw No Bet at 6/10
Smart Money: 
Long Shot: 
Scorecast: Let’s try a desmond - 2-2 – 12/1

Tottenham v Man United
Ah, remember the days when this would be a guaranteed goal-fest? With Spurs usually 3-0 at half time, only to lose 4-5 or something… This won’t.
A cursory glance at Tottenham’s season stats tells you the Spurs story… Unbeaten in 18 v teams outside the Top Seven. Five defeats from six v Top Seven. Anything less than three points here will create a bit of a gap between them and the Top Four, which will only get more difficult to close when Cups, Champions Leagues and pressure come into play.  United have won their last three on the road and not conceded in six. I can’t them getting beaten here.
Tap In: Under 3.5 Goals at 4/11
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 17/5 
Long Shot: 
Scorecast: Has the look of a 1-1 – 11/2

It’s all go this week. Tune in on Thursday for your weekend preview.

Matt Nesbitt   


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 25: Tuesday

Monday, January 29 2018

 

Aah, the magic of the Cup…

Nothing captures the spirit of the world’s greatest Cup competition more than the beaming smile of Mauricio Pochettino as he left the pitch at Newport County. His excitement at the prospect of cramming in another frantic game of head-tennis in between Liverpool and Arsenal fixture and just a week before Juventus arrive in the Champions League, was clear for all to see.

And what about Leroy Sane’s little face lighting up at the thought of missing City’s trip to Basel and the EFL Cup Final, thanks to Joe Bennett’s giant-killing calf-high tackle…

It’s not all glamour though.

We slipped on a few banana skins – at Liverpool, Huddersfield and Newport; but hit a couple of bulls-eyes elsewhere – a 10/3 at Cardiff, 6 and 7/1s at Boro; and were about 10 seconds away from another 7pt profit at Yeovil.

Here’s a breakdown to help guide your preference moving forward:

Tap Ins

4 out of 7

-1.67pts

Smart Bets

2 out of 6

0.15pts

Long Shots

2 out of 4

7.33pts

Scorecasts

1 out of 7

1.0pt

 

Back on Premier League business, we’ve got a full coupon spread over two nights. Three Tuesday, seven Wednesday.

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally.

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value from the match. And any Long Shots are decent priced (usually 3/1 or bigger) punts that have some statistical merit.

Scorecasts are priced up too.

Have it.

Tuesday: 
Swansea v Arsenal

Swansea might’ve turned a bit of a corner with their win over Liverpool. If not, they are certainly hanging around it with a bit of intent. They are unbeaten in five since Carlos got stuck into them. Admittedly, three of those results came against lower division teams in Cups – although Wolves are technically only one place below in the football pyramid – but it’s enough to suggest Arsenal won’t get things all their own way.
The Gunners are shocking away from home.  We know they can play and might benefit from the Dirty Sanchez business being over with, but one win in seven on the road v Bottom Half teams makes the 1/2 Away Win appeal about as much as a shitty stick. 
Tricky one to dredge a profit from, this one.  So we’ll play the value.
Tap in: Swansea (+2) Match Handicap at 6/10
Smart Money: 
Long Shot: Draw & Both Teams to Score at 9/2
Scorecast: Let’s go 1-1 at 7/1

West Ham v Crystal Palace
Two teams in recovery – not victims, survivors – operating in much the same ball park in terms of ambition, scale and current form. A classic six-pointer that both managers would probably settle as a one-pointer, but would see a no-pointer as points dropped.  
West Ham go into the match with a cruel injury list, while Palace have had a nice ten days to prep. The fixture at Selhurst Park ended 2-2 and West Ham’s last six have had goals at both ends, so that’s the way forward here. And coupled with the generous looking Match Result pricing, there is plenty of value to go after if you fancy a big priced punt. With West Ham’s injury tipping the scales in Palace’s favour.
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 17/20
Smart Money: 
Long Shot: Palace Win & BTTS at 17/4
Scorecast: Can’t split them 1-1 – 5/1

Huddersfield Town v Liverpool
This looks an ugly fixture for Liverpool after successive stumbles at Swansea and at home to West Brom (in the FA Cup). But even a misfiring (like v Swansea) and defensively shambolic (like v Albion) should probably have enough to get past Huddersfield. Just 4pts from eight matches v Top Seven teams – and 22 goals shipped – suggests that even a top end performance might fall short. They tend to score in singles too – averaging exactly one goal at home.
Liverpool can only boast two away clean sheets, but they usually pack two or more on away trips. Only City have scored more on the road. They need this, so I’m backing business a bit more like usual.
Tap in: Liverpool to Win at 1/3
Smart Money: Liverpool to Win & BTTS – 11/4 (price boost from 9/4 at Coral)
Long Shot: Liverpool Win, Both Teams to Score: YES, Over 9.5 Corners & Under 35.5 Booking Points at 11/2 (#YourCall Coral)
Scorecast: Back in the saddle 1-3 – 10/1

Same time tomorrow?

Matt Nesbitt


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FA Cup 4th Round

Friday, January 26 2018

 

I’ve shamelessly handpicked a smattering of cup ties I happen to give a sweet FA about. But don’t forget, BaDMeN - picking and choosing what we bet on is our biggest advantage over the bookies. That poor sucker has to be on EVERY match…

The Tap Ins are included regardless of price, so I’d reserve them for topping up Accas at best. Or even bypass them totally. 

The Smart Money bets are the best way of dredging a bit of value from the match. And any Long Shots are decent priced (usually 3/1 or bigger) punts that have some statistical merit. 

I’ve included prices on my Scorecasts too. Two a week is likely to cover your stakes if you’re backing them all. Three and the Milky Bars are on you. 

Eyes down...

Friday:
Yeovil Town v Man United
Some classic ‘magic of the cup’ fodder here. Fourth bottom in League Two plays second in the Premier League… Yeovil’s squad cost £65 and United’s cost a squillion pounds… blah blah blah. If I could get Even Money on somebody comparing Yeovil’s annual wage bill with what Alexis Sanchez throws away per week (or something), I would bet the farm on it. But to business…
We know what happens here – Yeovil huff and puff, are brave and heroic. But ultimately United’s class shows through. Expect plenty of big hitters to make the trip, the FA Cup could be important to Jose this season. 
Tap in: United Win – 1/7 
Smart Money: United Win & Under 3.5 Goals – 21/20
Long Shot: 
Scorecast: An efficient 0-3 – 5/1

Saturday:
Huddersfield Town v Birmingham City
The FA Cup won’t be a priority for Huddersfield, but likewise it could be a source of welcome high notes in a season which could get sticky in the coming months. They have been pretty efficient at home to the PL’s Bottom Six and won’t want to go into fixtures with Liverpool and Man United (up next) on the back of a cup shock.
This won’t be a priority for Birmingham either, avoiding the drop to League One – the Last Rites for many a ‘big’ club – is much more important. The Blues have taken just 7pts from 14 away games, but only once shipped more than two. 
Tap in: Huddersfield Win – 8/11
Smart Money: Huddersfield Win to Nil – 6/4
Long Shot: 
Scorecast: A steady 2-0.

Middlesbrough v Brighton
Hmm, there could be a bit of value on offer here. The bookies makes Middlesbrough favourites based on their decent home record and Brighton’s shocking away form. And the Home Win is the Racing Post's Banker of the Week. But I’m going the other way…
A closer look at Boro’s numbers revelas just 5pts from 11 matches v teams above them. Which, let’s not forget, Brighton are. Against the Bottom Nine, Boro are almost perfect – 10 wins (and a draw) from 11. Which tells me they punch effectively below their weight, but rely on scratching and pulling hair above it.
Brighton travel badly and have bigger fish to fry – including a south coast derby on Wednesday. But are always set up well and haven’t conceded more than twice on the road - including trips to Arsenal, Chelsea, Tottenham and Man United. So I think they will edge this.
Tap in: Under 2.5 Goals – 1/2
Smart Money: Brighton & Under 3.5 Goals – 29/10
Long Shot: Draw/ Brighton HT/FT – 6/1
Scorecast: A tight squeak but 0-1 – 7/1

Newport County v Tottenham
Spurs play Man United on Wednesday. Then Liverpool, then Arsenal, then Juventus. So safe to say Moussa Sissoko will be starting this match. But the FA Cup could be an important competition for Tottenham, especially if a Top Four places slips out of reach. So the question is, can a second string Spurs team still get past Newport County..?
The League Two outfit have only lost twice at home this season (although one was v Barnet, currently bottom of the whole world). They’re in their best form so the season too, winning four of the last five. But the key stats for me is that they’ve conceded in nine of their 14 home matches. So Tottenham’s reserves should outscore them.   
Tap in: Tottenham Win – 2/11
Smart Money: Tottenham Win & Under 3.5 Goals – 5/4
Long Shot: Draw/ Tottenham HT/ FT – 3/1
Scorecast: Two should do so  0-2 – 11/2

Liverpool v West Brom
I fancy Liverpool for the FA Cup this season. Just close your eyes for a second and imagine Jurgen’s big grin as he is interviewed on the Wembley pitch amidst a shower of red and white confetti… Ooh, here comes that scamp Mo Salah squirting a water bottle at the camera… and he’s only gone and put the cup lid on his head!!!
You with me?
Anyway, with their customary blip out of the way (at Swansea last week) the only wrinkle in my forehead is the Tuesday encounter at Huddersfield, which could affect their line-up.
I daresay the Baggies would swap midweek features – they are at Man City – and need PL status much more than a cup run, so I think they will set up to win this. Shit or bust. And I’m backing bust. 
Tap in: Liverpool to Win – 1/3
Smart Money: Liverpool Win & Under 3.5 Goals – 2/1
Long Shot: 
Scorecast: A competitive 2-1 

Sunday:
Chelsea v Newcastle United
At the risk of sounding like a broken record – or a dirty CD, or corrupted download, or whatever da kidz listen to these days – the importance of the FA Cup could increase incrementally with Chelsea’s stumbling PL form. All is clearly not well if they are seriously trying to pouch Peter Crouch – if that happens, I’m getting my boots out the loft by the way…  But players tend to win tournaments and I’d suggest Chelsea have the talent and temperament better suited to winning Cups than Leagues right now. Plus nine wins from nine with 27 scored and just two conceded says Newcastle will be concentrating on the league come Sunday. Particularly if Chelsea start like they against Arsenal in midweek.
Tap in: Chelsea Win – 4/9
Smart Money: Chelsea Win & Under 3.5 Goals – 5/4
Long Shot: 
Scorecast: A routine 2-0 – 6/1

Cardiff City v Man City
If anyone needed proof of City’s ability to move through the gears at will, then the 2-0 up, back to 2-2, then 2-3 ahead win at Bristol City was it.  So their ability to outscore Cardiff isn’t in question. It’s the home team that are the variable in this equation.
One home win in four isn’t too pretty, but we can put two defeats down to, ahem, Christmas fatigue… Otherwise the Bluebirds are flying high in the Championship based chiefly on a powerful home record and Neil Warnock’s effective, industrial football. They won’t outplay City, that’s for shiz.  
Tap in: Man City to Win – 1/4
Smart Money: City Win & Both Teams to Score – 9/5
Long Shot: Raheem Sterling Last Goal – 10/3
Scorecast: A hard fought 1-3 – 10/1

Here’s to a sweet FA Cup weekend.

Matt Nesbitt 


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What we learned from Game Week 24

Wednesday, January 24 2018

 

Joey Barton is right. Sometimes…

Joey Barton has been sounding off again this week. Telling BBC Radio Four’s Today programme that ‘50% of footballers bet’ and that gambling is ‘culturally engrained’ in the sport.

And he’s right. 

The blanket ban on ALL football people betting on ALL football is as ridiculous as it is unenforceable. 

It means if the kitman at Yeovil backs PSG to win the Champions League, he’s guilty. If Cristiano Ronaldo has a tenner on Enfield to beat Lowestoft in the Ryman Premier, he’s guilty. 

And if an academy player in Turkish Third Division happens to post on Facebook that he fancies himself to score on his debut this weekend and you – yes, YOU! – happen to spot it and include it in your weekend coupon, guess what? Young Hakan is guilty. And facing a chunky fine and ban.
 
Less than 0.1% ever do, of course. But Joey has (£30k and 18-months, reduced to five on appeal). Perhaps he should have used a false name, or a separate account to place his estimated 15,000 over 12 years. Most do. Or maybe just learn to keep his fat mouth shut.

He couldn’t have been winning many. After all, a bookie is not going to give up a cash cow to the FA for breaking the rules. Bookies don’t give any more of shit over the welfare of their customers than the FA do about the welfare of players.

The stringing up of Barton is merely a scramble for the moral high ground by the same degenerates that can be bribed into awarding the World Cup to 50 degree Qatar or war-torn Russia.  

Matt Nesbitt is wrong. Sometimes…

The FA Cup is hogging the spotlight this weekend, but we’ll be back on Premier League detail quick sharp with a full program on Tuesday and Wednesday. And there’s gonna be some changes around these parts…

As tipsters go, I’m a broad church. At BaDMaN we embrace all sects, castes and denominations of punter. Come one, come all. 

It makes no odds to me if you betting 10p, £10 or ten grand. So I’ve always tried to provide all-purpose advice to embrace all types of punter.  But that doesn’t always work. You can end up falling between two stools.

So from here on in, for every match you’ll get the best Tap In, Smart Money, Long Shot and Scorecast bet. Regardless of price, just purely based on the stats and my take on things. 

Each bet will be considered ‘1pt’ and each category measured in strike rate and pts profit. Which will I will update and share with you after every set fixtures. 

Emily Ratajkowski is fit. Always…

So if you looking for bankers for accumulators, you’re covered; seeking out a bit of value, you’re good; fancy a punt on some big prices, you’re golden. Likewise, I will be recording the strike rate of Match Results for those targeting the Pools (yes, they’re still going), in-store betting coupons or things like  Colossus

Last weekend Previews delivered seven out of ten Match Results, with only Stoke’s win upsetting Saturday’s cart before Tottenham and Liverpool’s handiwork. And three Correct Scores – paying between 6/1 and 7/1.    

But a combination of me being a bit shit with the Coupon Busters and Liverpool being a bit shit at Swansea, we managed to come away 3pts down on the weekend. 

From here on though, BaDMeN it’ll be all falling into barrels full of thumbs and coming sucking Emily Ratajkowski’s tits.  

FACT!

Matt Nesbitt
   


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TV Guide - Game Week 24: Swansea v Liverpool

Monday, January 22 2018

 

Tottenham ruined our chances of landing a 10/1 Acca tonight. Or perhaps Southampton ruined. Either way, it’s ruined. 

We still would’ve needed Liverpool to win at Swansea, but for a 10/1 payout I’d take that all day.

Things started to go wrong before 1pm Saturday lunchtime. Already 2-0 up, Chelsea were well on the way to taking down two Coupon Busters, before most games had even kicked off.

Arsenal followed suit then Watford put the boot in when I was already on my hands and knees spitting out teeth.  

A second goal from Tottenham would’ve helped me to my feet and tucked 10/3 and 13/2 winners in my top pocket. Ah well. Them’s the beats. 

And there’s always tonight…

Swansea v Liverpool. 8pm on Sky Sports. 

We can agree that Liverpool will win this one, right? The tipping point here is – will they concede. And I say no.

Yes, I know they have only registered two clean sheets on the road… yes, I know there have been goals at both ends in five of their last six… and yes, I know that Wilfried Bony looks like he has shed some of his Kardashian butt and the Swans have scored two matches in a row (no mean feat for that lot).

But I figure Jurgen the German will be thinking: The front four will win us the match, let’s see if the other six can get through it without fucking up. 

So let’s play it like this…

Tap In

  • Liverpool (-1) Match Handicap at 17/20

Long Shots

  • Liverpool to Win, Both Teams to Score: NO, Under 10.5 Corners & Under 35.5 Booking Points at 4/1 (via Coral’s #YourCall)

Note: Going over 10.5 corners and over 35.5 booking points (i.e. four cards) pushes the odds up to 11/1. Everything points under, but I wouldn’t dissuade you places a ‘saver’ bet to cover your stakes. After all, I’ve slashed everything else into the crowd this weekend… 
 

Matt Nesbitt


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Coupon Busters - Game Week 24

Friday, January 19 2018

 

It’s a bumper edition this week. If, that is, a ‘bumper edition’ is still a thing in this modern age of ePads, the webnet and hi-fi stacks with slow release cassette decks. 

It just means there’s more bets than usual. You’re welcome.

Match Results

  1. Leicester to beat Watford
  2. Man City to beat Newcastle 
  3. Tottenham to beat Southampton
  4. Liverpool to beat Swansea                   £1 Four-fold returns £4.50
  5. Man United to beat Burnley        
  6. Chelsea to beat Brighton                      £0.5 Six-fold returns £5.75

Under 2.5 Goals

  1. Stoke v Huddersfield
  2. Brighton v Chelsea                              £1 Double returns £2.84
  3. Burnley v Man United                          £1 Treble returns £4.75

Both Teams to Score

  1. West Ham v Bournemouth
  2. Leicester v Watford                             £1 Double returns £3

Win To Nil

  1. Man City to beat Newcastle
  2. Liverpool to beat Swansea                  £1 Double returns £4
  3. Man United to beat Burnley                £0.5 Treble returns £4.70

Win By 1 Goal

  1. Chelsea to beat Brighton
  2. Arsenal to beat Palace
  3. Man United to beat Burnley
  4. Leicester to beat Watford                   £0.55 Yankee returns £65 (Any two returns £5)                 

*In this context a Yankee is not a morbidly obese gun-nut, eating a corndog - it is simply11 bets in one: six Doubles, four Trebles and a Four-fold. A 5p Yankee bet costs £0.55p – 11 x 5p bets = £0.55p.

Play your cards right and I might be back over the weekend with a Match Profile on one the TV matches. I’m mad, me. 

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 24

Thursday, January 18 2018

 

VAR. Huh. What is it good for? Absolutely nothing, say it again.

Or over and over again, if you’re a BBC pundit. But never mind that shit, it’s tip time…

As per, the Tap Ins are short-price bankers best suited to Doubles, Trebles and Accas.

The Smart Money bets are for snaffling a bit of value out of the bookies. And in the absence of value, I’ve dropped in a few Long Shots that are worth a punt. 

Suggested stakes: 1pt per Smart Money, 0.5pts per Long Shot up to 3/1, 0.25pts 3/1+.   

The Scorecasts are for tackling things like Sky’s Super 6 £250k or Colossus’ £5k - £5 million jackpots     

And there’s £100 in free bets with Colossus is you sign up with this code: RAFMTS5UU4

Ready?

Saturday:
Brighton v Chelsea 12.30

Sniff, sniff… I smell a bit of betting value here. Watching Chelsea creep (and creak) past Norwich in the FA Cup in midweek will have done Brighton’s confidence no harm. A similarly neat and tidy team, with a solid home record – one defeat in 12 – and Liverpool and Man City are the only teams to leave with 3pts so far.
Chelsea are in that ballpark, but not the same league right now. Five draws on the spin tells us that. With their big hitters back they should just have enough, but only just.
Tap in: Priced out of it.
Smart Money: Chelsea & Under 2.5 Goals at 11/5 & Draw/ Chelsea at 3/1 are both value.
Scorecast: An ugly 0-1. 

Arsenal v Crystal Palace 
Arsenal have filled plenty of column inches this week, but none of it mentioned the five games without a win. Or two horribly soulless performances at Bournemouth and Forest. They’ve always picked their matches, to be fair and don’t like playing so I fancy them to maintain the third best home record in the PL. 
Palace (and Roy Hodgson)’s resurrection began by being hard to beat away from home and going toe to toe with their hosts could be their undoing here. But it’s a free hit. Their next three – West Ham, Newcastle & Everton – are bigger games in the narrative of their season.
Tap in: Home Win is too short at 1/2, even for an Acca.
Smart Money: Arsenal to win by 1 goal at 11/4 is value
Scorecast: An edgy 2-1.

Burnley v Man United
Burnley may have been the story of the season, but the last few chapters haven’t been great. No wins in six, four blanks in front of goal and two 90th minute point-dropping goals conceded tells me they are running – or have run – out of juice a bit. 
United look like they have been chugging along on the wrong kind of fuel all season, but the thought/ arrival of Alexi Sanchez might get a spark out of their laidback mavericks. Which should be enough to nick this. 
Tap in: Nothing tap-innable here. 
Smart Money: Man United by 1 goal at 9/4. 
Scorecast: The old Mourinho used to love a 0-2. This one seems happy with 0-1.

Everton v West Brom
The Big Sam effect wore off for Everton almost as quickly as it did for England. But it lingered long enough to find the comfortable mid-table obscurity that will probably lead to the same conclusion, but that’s 18- months or so away. Their perfect home record v teams below them (six from six) suggests they will end West Brom’s two-match winning streak. (And if you’re wondering if you can call two matches a ‘streak’, after 21 without a win Baggies fans are probably calling them the fucking ‘Invincibles’.)
It’s hard to see Albion taking more than a point. And it’s easy to see them leave with none. But you don’t read this for me to hedge, so I’ll grow a pair and do this…
Tap in: Everton Draw No Bet at 8/15.
Long Shot: 1-1 at 5/1.
Scorecast: Er, 1-1.
 
Leicester v Watford
Aside from an odd blip v Palace, Leicester have been pretty reliable at home – winning five of seven v teams outside the Top Four.  They generally punch their weight and with Mahrez getting his mojo back in the last month, they are probably as close to their title winning swagger as they are going to be.  Plus, they were robbed in the 1-2 Boxing Day defeat to Watford too.   
It has been a bearly season so far for the Hornets. They seem to have been a couple of minutes, or the width  of a post, or a red card away from a lot more points. But I can see the same again here.
Tap in: Home Win at 4/5 is fair.
Smart Money: Leicester & Both Teams to Score at 12/5.
Scorecast: Leicester to reverse the 2-1 on Boxing Day.  

Stoke v Huddersfield 
El Clasico it ain’t. The arrival of Paul Lambert might not have excited the Stoke fans, but it will stop them shipping the stupid amount of goals they have this season. Luckily for all concerned, Huddersfield rarely pack an away goal in their travel bags – just three times in 11 away trips in fact. But 4pts from their last three on the road will have their tails up – and thinking they can make it 5pts from four. Odder things have happened. And Stoke wouldn’t turn their nose up at a share of the spoils either.
Tap in: Under 2.5 Goals at 8/13.
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals at 11/4.
Scorecast: 0-0 written all over it.

West Ham v Bournemouth
Two teams on the up. Their ‘win, draw, win, draw’ records match perfectly over the last four games. Both teams played reserve teams in their midweek FA Cup ties, suggesting that they both fancy something here. And it has the look of goals, with BTTS paying out in West Ham’s last five and Bournemouth’s last four. And let’s not forget the Boxing Day slugfest that just wouldn’t quit (until the referee stepped in at 3-3. I’m struggling to see much different, but will go for a more cagey version.    
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 8/11.
Smart Money: Draw & Both Teams to Score at 17/5.
Long Shot: Draw & Over 2.5 Goals is value at 11/1.
Scorecast: I’ll take a 1-1.

Man City v Newcastle 5.30
Hmm, can Newcastle nick an away goal? That’s my quandary here. City will win, we know that – despite perhaps not looking quite as snappy as earlier in the season.  But winning matches is not the challenge, it’s managing the workload. 
Newcastle have picked up decent points in recent weeks but 1pt from a possible 30pts v Top Half teams tells you everything you need to know. And don’t be hoodwinked by the narrow 0-1 at the Etihad at Christmas. More than a third of City’s PL wins have been by a single goal margin. It’s enough to win any game and plenty in some. 
Tap in: Newcastle (+3) Handicap at 1/3.
Smart Money: Man City Win, Under 11.5 Corners & Under 35.5 Booking Points at 11/4 (Coral’s #YourCall)
Long Shot: Man City Win, Both Teams to Score; NO, Under 11.5 Corners & Under 35.5 Booking Points at 6/1 (Coral’s #YourCall).
Scorecast: A steady 3-0.

Sunday:
Southampton v Tottenham

Throwing away (potentially vital) Premier League points in the last few minutes of a match twice in a row, after a stoic draw at Old Trafford tells me Southampton’s players are bored. Perhaps disillusioned at the revolving exit door at the club. Perhaps frustrated they haven’t gone through it. Who knows. But the latch on the trap door below is looking less secure with every match without a win. Now ten and counting.
If they players are picking their matches they might fancy this one. But didn’t look that interested in the return fixture a couple of weeks ago. If Tottenham turn up in similar mood, this could get emotional.
Tap in: Tottenham at 8/13.
Smart Money: Tottenham & Under 3.5 Goals at 10/3.
Long Shot: Tottenham Win, Over 10.5 Corners & Over 35.5 Booking Points at 13/2 (Coral’s #YourCall).
Scorecast: Standard 0-2. 

Monday:
Swansea v Liverpool

It would be Liverpool-like for Klopp’s lot to piss all over their own shoes and drop points here, coming just a week after tweaking Man City’s ear. But not even Johnny Cochrane could make a case for Swansea. 
The ugly duckling won’t want another 0-5 hiding like at Anfield on Boxing Day, but I suspect this match has been written off now they’re in survival mode.
One stat that is niggling me is Liverpool’s habit of conceding on their travels. Just two away clean sheets from 11 on the road so far.  So I’m side-stepping it.
Tap In: Away Win but 3/10 is too short.
Long Shot: Liverpool Win, Both Teams to Score: NO, Under 10.5 Corners & Under 35.5 Booking Points at 4/1 (Coral’s #YourCall).
Scorecast: Threesy does it 0-3.

Make money, not VAR. 
 

Matt Nesbitt


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What we learned about Arsenal this week

Wednesday, January 17 2018

 

A tough set of fixtures last weekend made for a break-even result – actually a minus 0.05pts, but who’s counting? – so nothing much to get excited about. 

But, as ever, there were pointers to help us going forward…

Arsenal are one of the PL’s most reliable teams…

No, really. So long as you apply some basic punting principles: At home v teams below them – Home Win (seven from seven so far); Everywhere else – oppose or avoid.

Their home record this season is only bettered by the Manchester pair. But their away record has them rubbing shoulders with Watford, Newcastle and West Ham. Their only success on the road has come at a lowest ebb Everton and via a last minute act of charity from the referee at Burnley. 

I have been guilty of thinking that this wonderfully gifted bunch of players – and they are – would pull it out of the bag, as has become their modus operandi in recent seasons. Most recently at Bournemouth. But no more. It’s time to face facts. So I would solemnly advise friends and family members that if they want a last look at the Arsenal they have known, visit in the next couple of weeks.

I’m no economics graduate (unlike Arsene) but I have been in a dressing room. And seeing your best (paid, respected and just best) players toy with the club and then head for a rival does NOT stiffen your resolve. You lose respect and get in line for the exit.

With five tasty looking teams scrapping for four Champion League places – all on the up, all with money to burn – this is the worst season ever to finish sixth. 

Checking out and cashing in at Arsenal…

The Gunners can also be relied upon to fire the best transfer news into the air these days too. A month ago it was all about Ozil, but it seems his summer deal is already neatly tucked in his top pocket. Leaving the stage clear for Dirty Sanchez and young Theo.

Walcott is still 17, right? Oh no, hang on… he’s closer to three-oh Walcott. He is what we used to call a ‘speedboat with no driver’. But the burden of being the new Thierry Henry was a big one, to be fair. The ‘new Steven Pienaar’ do you, Theo?

It’s not just Arsenal and Man City fans who are going to be gutted when the Sanchez saga is finally over. Members of Football Index have been creaming money off the daily back and forth, making proper profits on Sanchez’s stock.

(If I’m now talking gibberish, Football Index is a new-ish stock market for players. If you know your shit, you can turn it into daily cash. Have a look here…)

Upwards of £120,000 has changed hands in the last week. Okay, it’s only about a day’s work of Alexis but he doesn’t live in our world.

Speaking of which…

Dementia, Football and Alan…

What has Alan Shearer got against managers? 

When Mark Hughes left a few big hitters out of his Stoke team at Chelsea - targeting the more winnable home match against Newcastle two days later – Alan couldn’t wait to winch up the sword of Damocles and push Sparky into position…

‘He HAS to win against Newcastle’, deadpanned Shearer helpfully from his oh so comfy Match of the Day high-horse.

Of course, they didn't and that was that.

Ryan Giggs hadn’t been appointed a day in the Wales job and Alan was at it again…

‘Good luck trying to get your players together for friendlies…’  squealed Shearer to his mini-me Danny Dour (Murphy) referring to Giggs’ reluctance play in Welsh friendlies (en route to a 1,000+ match, 24-year career winning…erm… oh yeah, everyfuckingthing). 

[Note: I resisted including the clip as Shearer’s voice goes so high at the end he could be mistaken for Richard of Undateables fame - another half sympathetic, half laughable manchild that doesn’t know how to behave in public.]

Is it a problem with Welshmen? Or just ex-Man United players? 

Or perhaps it’s because he knows people at the FA are still laughing about his application to be England manager. Writing it is crayon didn’t help, Alan. But let’s remind ourselves of your managerial record…

Pld: 8   W:1*   D: 2   L: 5   Relegations: One    Anything else: Fuck all

(* v Middlesbrough, also relegated)

Back at it with a Premier League preview tomo.

Matt Nesbitt


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TV Guide - Game Week 23: Man United v Stoke

Monday, January 15 2018

 

Hope you were on the 7/2 and 6/1 winners highlighted in Liverpool v Man City match. Not a bad watch too.

After 70-odd minutes of Bournemouth v Arsenal I was daring to dream about the 32/1 flagged up in Friday’s Coupon Busters. But Petr Cech clearly had his money elsewhere. 

Probably for the best – I’d have never shut up about it. And probably woken up in a bin this morning. 

But there’s always tonight…

Man United v Stoke. 8pm on Sky Sports. 

On paper, this isn’t a difficult puzzle to solve: The Premier League’s second best home team + the worst away team = home win. All day. 

The challenge is dredging a bit of betting value out of the match... 

The appointment of a Paul Lambert might get a bit of a bounce from Stoke. Either from players keen to impress their new boss, or from those thinking they might prefer to a new boss elsewhere. It happens.

Plus, Stoke can play free from the pressure of trying to win the match. Their next six will define their season, not this one.  

The potential/ possible arrival of Alexis Sanchez might also get a response from one or two of United’s front players. And with Arsenal and Chelsea dropping points at the weekend, Jose can make ground in the race for second place. No room for a third home draw here.

So let’s play it like this…

Tap In

  • Man United to Win To Nil at 10/11

It makes my sphincter pucker to go below Evens for a Win To Nil bet, but you’re not gonna thank me for telling you to back a Home Win at 2/9, are you? Personally, I’m swerving in this for the following…

Smart Bets

  • Draw/ Man United in the HT/FT at 14/5

United have been level at the break in their last six matches (all comps). So there might be a bit of value in backing a hardworking Stoke keeping United’s workmanlike attack out for an hour or so.

  • Man United & Under 3.5 Goals at 6/4  

This covers the 1-0, 2-0, 3-0 and 2-1. United haven’t hit three or more for ten matches, so we should be good.  

Long Shots

  • Man United to Win, Both Teams to Score: NO, Under 11.5 Corners & Over 35.5 Booking Points at 7/1 (via Coral’s #YourCall)

To add a bit of spice, lets reinvest a bit of our Liverpool v Man City winnings on this four-way. I’m happy with United winning to Nil with a measure of control that will bring it in under 11.5 Corners. And I’m going over 35.5 Booking Points (i.e. four Yellow Cards) based on one or two Stoke players playing to the crowd/ new manager. Worth a silly fiver. 

I’ll pick up the pieces tomo with a review of the weekend. 

Matt Nesbitt


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Coupon Busters - Game Week 23

Friday, January 12 2018

 

I’ll level with you - it’s an ugly old coupon for us to get back to Premier League punting with. 

We’re not going to clear much of the Christmas credit card bill this week. But Badmen can’t be choosers. 

Match Results

Newcastle to beat Swansea
Man United to beat Stoke                          £1 Double returns £2.38
Chelsea to beat Leicester
Tottenham to beat Everton                         £1 Four-fold returns £4

Under 2.5 Goals

Palace v Burnley
Newcastle v Swansea
West Brom v Brighton                                 £1 Treble returns £3.75    

Draws

Palace v Burnley
Huddersfield v West Ham
West Brom v Brighton
Liverpool v Man City                                    £1.10 Yankee* returns £29 
                                                                     (Any two covers stakes)

*In this context a Yankee is not a morbidly obese racist, drinking a cawfee and telling a Yellow Cab that he’s ‘walking here!’ It is 11 bets in one – six Doubles, four Trebles and a Four-fold. A 10p Yankee bet costs £1.10 – 10 x 11 bets = £1.10.

To brighten up weekend wagers, I’m going to have a punt on the Half-time/ Full-time market. It’s a tricky one to land, so bet with money that jingles rather than folds. But it will add a bit of spice to Super Sunday…

Draw/ Arsenal
Draw/ Liverpool                                           £1 Double returns £32

I’ll be picking the bones out on Monday, plus having a squiz at the Man United v Stoke match.

Join me. 

Matt Nesbitt


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Premier League Preview - Game Week 23

Thursday, January 11 2018

 

It’s back to Premier League business this weekend after those FA Cup shenanigans. Some gnat’s chuff pricing from the bookies means we only cleared 1.65pts from the six matches covered, despite a couple of clean sweeps. Eyes roll.

Still, I’ve squeegeed my third eye and focussed it fairly and squarely on this weekend’s coupon. And this is what it saw…

As per, the Tap Ins are short-price bankers best used in Doubles, Trebles and Accas.

The Smart Money bets are for pick-pocketing a bit of value out of the bookies. And there are a few Long Shots in there that are worth a punt. 

Suggested stakes: 1pt per Smart Money, 0.5pts per Long Shot up to 3/1, 0.25pts 3/1+.   

The Scorecasts are for tackling things like Sky’s Super 6 £250k or Colossus’ £5k - £5 million jackpots        

And there’s £100 in free bets with Colossus is you sign up with this code: RAFMTS5UU4

Gertcha. 

Saturday:
Chelsea v Leicester

Coming sandwiched between EFL and FA Cup ties might add to the selection headaches, but it should be a straightforward enough home win. Chelsea are 100% at home to teams outside the Top Seven, conceding in just two of seven matches. Leicester are pointless in four visits to Top Half teams and have taken just 4pts from 32 v Top Six.
Tap in: Home Win but 2/7 is a no no.
Smart Money: Chelsea Win & Both Teams to Score is better at 19/10.
Scorecast: A repeat of the 2-1 at the King Power. 

Crystal Palace v Burnley
After five without a win in the Premier League, Burnley’s 100% white team lead by a ginger (not my words, L’Equipe magazine, fact) can’t afford to leave Palace empty handed. But Roy’s Boys have become accustomed to picking up points themselves. A creditable 17 from 10 games. And won’t roll over to those last century throwbacks with flat noses and big ears (yep, L’Equipe again).
Tap in: Burnley Draw No Bet at 13/8. 
Smart Money: Draw & Under 2.5 Goals isn’t bad value at 13/5.
Scorecast: A 1-1 would satisfy both camps.

Huddersfield Town v West Ham
Similarly, neither of these will be happy with anything less than a point here. But I’m not sure either team has got the juice to force three. This dilemma has been reflected in both teams’ recent results – six draws from nine between them. Wouldn’t back against another here.
Tap in: Nothing tap-innable here. 
Long Shot: Draw & Both Teams to Score looks the value at 7/2.
Scorecast: A slightly nervy 1-1.

Newcastle United v Swansea City
This match could be a defining one for both teams. A good cup win, four Premier League points and gutsy showing against Man City suggests a bit of momentum gathering for Newcastle. A win here will confirm it. Likewise, if Swansea lose here the stirring late revival at Watford can probably be put down to luck.  
Tap in: Home Win at Evens.
Smart Money: Newcastle Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 7/5. 
Long Shot: 1-0 and 2-0 Correct Scores at 5/1 and 7/1 (55:45 stakes).
Scorecast: I’ll go 2-0.
 
Watford v Southampton
Watford don’t seem to have won for months, but are still mid-table. But then you could say something about Southampton’s last five years. Just one away win all season – at a lowest-ebb Crystal Palace – should give Watford the chance to get a grip on their campaign again, but this isn’t one to put the farm on Badmen, so we’ll play the value.
Tap in: Watford or Draw at 4/11.
Long Shot: Watford Win & Both Teams to Score is value at 15/4.
Scorecast: Watford to edge it 2-1. I think.  

West Brom v Brighton
This has the look of another pivotal match for both parties. West Brom will see it as the best chance of a PL win since Palace at home (December 2nd) and until Southampton at home (Feb 3rd). That coming after three ugly looking away trips to Everton, Liverpool (FA Cup) and Man City. BUT…  Brighton will also see the chance to improve on their travel sickness – they’re five without a goal on the road.
Tap in: Under 2.5 Goals looks a gimme at 4/9.
Smart Money: The Draw & Under 2.5 Goals is worthy of the 9/4 offered.
Scorecast: Got a sneaky for Albion to pinch it – 1-0.

Tottenham v Everton
After a wobbly November, Tottenham had a good Christmas and look back ‘at it’. They have been very efficient against teams outside the Top Eight, with ten wins from 14 matches. In contract, Everton have gone flat after their initial Big Sam bounce. No wins in five – and just six shots on target (no, really!) – suggests Tottenham at a canter.  
Tap in: Tottenham at a canter, but 1/4 is too short.
Smart Money: Tottenham Win & Under 3.5 Goals at Evens.
Scorecast: A comfortable 2-0.

Sunday:
Bournemouth v Arsenal

Bournemouth seem to have come through the cruel run of December fixtures – United, City and Liverpool in the PL and Chelsea in the EFL Cup – relatively unscathed. No wins, but five points from the three matches since is as good a spell as they’ve managed all season. Still no points and just two goals from eight v Top Seven teams though. Although the visit of Arsenal isn’t daunting. Just three away wins has the Gunners punching around Leicester, Watford and Newcastle’s weight on the road. Can’t see them beaten though.
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 8/15.
Smart Money: Mmm, I’m split between Arsenal Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 12/5 and the Draw & BTTS at 4/1 (60:40). 
Scorecast: Mmm, likewise 2-2/1-2, 2-2/ 1-2... 1-2.

Liverpool v Man City
Right then, who’s up for a little sport? I reckon Liverpool are one of the teams with the tools to beat City. And they’re in good fettle just now. With Dick Van Dyke on board their front four (five, or even six) will be happy to pour all over City and we know there are cracks, so expect a bit of seepage. Yes, yes, yes, City are well capable of scoring and winning at Anfield, but the value is with Liverpool. So let’s do it. 
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 4/9.
Smart Money: Liverpool Win & Both Teams to Score is value at 7/2.
Long Shot: The Draw/ Liverpool in the HT/ FT even more so at 6/1.
Scorecast: They both like a 2-1.

Monday:
Man United v Stoke City

Should be a bit of a free hit for United. Missing a manager for any length of time during January is bound to have agents circling like buzzards above Stoke’s dazed and confused players. A trip to Old Trafford doesn’t inspire the chills (or thrills) that is once did, but only City have been better at home so far - just three teams have scored there this season. And they owe Stoke for the dropped away points in September. 
Tap In: Home Win but 1/5 is,  like, waaay short. 
Smart Money: Man United Win & Under 3.5 Goals at 11/10. 
Scorecast: How about a 3-0.

Hows about that then?

Matt Nesbitt


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FA Cup 3rd Round

Friday, January 5 2018

 

Quick update on my Christmas assessment…

That Arsenal and Chelsea lot did us a solid the other night, a-scoring and a-drawing at the Emirates. Adding 4/5 and a 16/5 winners into the pot. 

I had scored our four Christmas match days v the bookies as a win, a loss and two draws. But this counts as an injury time winner, so get ready for dressing room selfie. Shirts off, bellies in and say ‘win bonus’.  

Right, to FA Cup biznizz... I’ve picked six of the best, including the all-Premier League ties and a couple of Championship teams I happen to cover on duty for the bookies (don’t judge me – I’ve got an expensive wife-style to maintain). 

As per, the Tap Ins are short-price bankers best used in Doubles, Trebles and Accas.

The Smart Money bets are for pick-pocketing a bit of value out of the bookies. And there are a few Long Shots in there that are worth a punt. 

Suggested stakes: 1pt per Smart Money, 0.5pts per Long Shot up to 3/1, 0.25pts 3/1+.   

Friday:
Liverpool v Everton

If Everton’s unlikely draw – secured from their only shot of the match – at Liverpool a month ago tore up the formbook. Friday’s cup clash should Sellotape it back together again. Liverpool have scored 16 goals in the six matches since (including one blank) and won’t be anything like so wasteful this time.
The Big Sam effect has worn of in stages since assuming the throne at Goodison. Two wins were followed by two draws, which have given way to two defeats. But they are back in mid-table and that’s where their ambitions lay, not in the FA Cup. Liverpool, on the other hand will fancy their chances.
Tap in: Home Win but 2/5 is too short. 
Smart Money: Liverpool To Nil is better at 11/8. 
Scorecast: No mistakes – 2-0.

Man United v Derby County
With the big one (the Premier League) out of sight, the even bigger one (the Champions League) light years away, the Special One (Mourinho) might fancy the FA one this season. It would certainly help paper over a few cracks (just ask Arsene), just like the acquisition of the EFL and Europa Leagues did last term. It would also be one to add to the set for Jose and Zlatan.
Derby are going well in the Championship but this is likely to be as much a short-swapping exercise as anything. They have got smaller, but more catchable fish to fry. 
Tap in: Man United, but not at 1/4.
Long Shot: Draw/ Man United in the HT/FT at 27/10.
Scorecast: A late flurry 2-0.

Saturday:
Middlesbrough v Sunderland

Here’s a few things you might not know about Middlesbrough: It’s an industrial town on the River Tees and it’s a shithole. Only joking, of course - everybody knows it’s a shithole…
Currently 8th in the Championship Boro have been decent against teams outside the Top Six (W7 D2 L1) and beat Sunderland 1-0 in November. Six of their seven home wins have been To Nil. 
In the interests of balance, I should state that although Sunderland is bigger (it’s a city) it is every bit as shit as Middlesbrough, every day of the week. Except Saturdays. When it’s often worse. Three wins in the last eight matches is something of a revival in a dogs’ egg of a season which sees them bottom of the table. 
Tap in: Home Win at 3/4 – but I’d be more inclined to go…
Smart Money: Middlesbrough & Under 3.5 Goals at 6/5. Or even to cover both…
Long Shot: 1-0 and 2-0 Correct Scores at 5/1 and 7/1 (55:45 stakes for even coverage). 
Scorecast: I’ll go 2-0.

Man City v Burnley
Hmm, this might depend just how much Pep fancies the Quadruple. And I suspect he will. Which is a shame because Burnley might’ve been eyeing a cup run in their so far excellent season. Although – whisper it – but they had a stinker over Christmas. 
Three points from five matches, with just three goals scored is by far their worst form of the campaign. Of course, it’s all ‘look how far we’ve come’ and ‘this time last year’ from Sean Dyche – and quite right too. But if the margins of your success are small – six 1-0 wins so far, just saying – your collective arses are never far from reality’s snapping jaws. 
But, saying all that City can concede – just one clean sheet in six at home. And Burnley compete well. 
Tap in: Burnley (+3) Match Handicap at 4/7.
Smart Money: Man City & Under 3.5 Goals at 5/4.  
Long Shot: Draw/ Man City in the HT/ FT at 29/10.
Scorecast: City to find a way – 2-1.
 
Watford v Bristol City
Up until the end of November, Watford were the story of the Premier League season. Since then seven defeats from nine has introduced a nasty twist in the middle. But I think they’ve been a bit unlucky. A mixture of bad luck (v Tottenham, Palace and Swansea), a couple of unwinnable matches (v United and City) and a shitload of red cards (v Burnley, Palace and Huddersfield) has dealt them a raw deal.
Bristol City, however, will fancy their chances. Now they ARE the story of the Championship. A squad put together for a combined £65… favourites for relegation a year ago… a handicapped child for a goalkeeper… blah, blah, blah. Their efforts this season have been remarkable. Only leaders Wolves have been better on the road and seeing to Man United in the EFL won’t exactly deflate their big balls. 
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at 4/5.
Smart Money: Watford & Both Teams to Score pays 2/1 – four times the Home Win.
Scorecast: Goalfest 4-2.

Monday:
Brighton v Crystal Palace

Someone on Five Live called this a derby the other day?! It’s 46 miles, for badness sake. That’s no more a derby than… I dunno… Stoke and Man City (43 miles).  But it is on TV. So…
Brighton are one of the most consistent teams in the Premier League. They pretty much punch their weight – W3 D2 v Bottom Five, L5 v Top Five and W2 D6 L4 v the rest. Palace’s form over the last ten matches – W4 D5 L1 – puts them smack in the middle of that and have added away wins to their armoury in two of the last three. Both have got more pressing business in the league but I fancy a little light relief of FA Cup magic might make this a bit of a thriller.
Tap in: Both Teams to Score at Evens.
Smart Money: Draw at 17/5 could well land. 
Long Shot: Draw & Over 2.5 Goals is worth a punt at 14/1. 
Scorecast: Can see a desmond here – 2-2

Here’s to a sweet FA Cup weekend.

Matt Nesbitt


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What we learned over Christmas

Wednesday, January 3 2018

 

Where do we start...?

Well, gin and Baileys doesn’t mix… Police horses are bigger than you think… It was Jesus born on Christmas Day, not Elvis…  Victoria’s Secret… (They’re vests and pants).

And at the halfway point of the season, we’re on track.

Punting is for life not just Christmas…

For all the talk of the crippling festive fixture pile-up – including from our own Ben Dinnery on the BBC, but I’ll get onto that in a moment. We emerged the side other of four match days in decent fettle.

Game Week 19 (pre-Christmas) and Game Week 22 (the New Year matches) broke even. The two in-between hit the heights of a 21pts profit and a barrel-scraping 9pts loss. So we’ll call that two draws, a win and a defeat. Same as Palace. 

Could’ve been better, of course. One less goal here (or, even better – Burnley)… a couple of Cards there… (or, to be specific Leicester and Everton)… and we’re bundling 4/1, 9/2 and 13/2 winners into the Collect column.  

But we’ll take it. The second half of the season is always more punter-friendly. The table has taken shape, agendas have developed and battles are chosen more carefully. Plus, there's half a season of form in the book so the sailing will get more plain from here on in.

Ben on the Beeb…

Normally the thought of waking up to the lilting Geordie tones of Ben Dinnery brings me out in a cold sweat – four years on the bottom bunk of that Mexican jail cell has left its mark… 

But when it comes via the radio on BBC Five Live, it is a thing of beauty.

Being the MAN when it comes to football injuries, the Big Dinn made more sense in five minutes on Wednesday morning than those clowns Savage, Hartson, Neville and Shearer have in the last five years. 

It’s only a matter of time until the world catches on that injury knowledge is a key tool to cashing at the bookies and elsewhere…

Taking stock…

We hear from plenty of tuned-in cookies who are trading on Ben’s injury insight on Football Index.

It’s a kind of stock market for footballers, where you can buy and sell players at fluctuating prices – based on their performances on the pitch and in the media. It’s good. Very smart. 

And lucrative too. The sharpest Fantasy Football-types have been turning over four-figure profits all season – which, between you and me, is two-figures more than I’ve made most weeks.

But I’m hooked. Especially now the Transfer Window is open. It's party time.

Have a look here. You just might love it. 

But when the fun stops… keep going. Yeah?

I’ll be back on your screens on Friday with a look at a selection of sweet FA Cup ties. 

Matt Nesbitt


 

 


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Ben Dinnery

Ben Dinnery

@BenDinnery

Ben is football’s leading injury specialist. The ‘go-to’ guru for big hitters like Sky Sports, ESPN and NBC Sports when they need data. Or the BBC, talkSPORT and the broadsheets when a quote is required. His unique insight has helped provide a better understanding of what is really happening in the treatment rooms.


Johnny Wilson

Johnny Wilson

@johnny_wilson5

Johnny is a respected physiotherapist and sports scientist, specialising in football injuries and rehab. Johnny has headed up the medical departments at Chesterfield, Scunthorpe and Notts County. Overseeing everything from player-specific training loads to pre-signing medicals. He has a proven record working with elite athletes in Private Practice and is regularly called upon throughout Europe to deliver presentations on the latest rehab innovations.


Matt Nesbitt

Matt Nesbitt On TipTV

@MattNesbitt16

Matt's short, unremarkable football career was ended by his own bad driving. His long, distinguished career as a football tipster was ended by his own good advice. Because bookmakers don’t like a winner. First, they closed his accounts. Then his members’ accounts. Then his tipping service. And now they employ him as a consultant. Funny old game.


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