A good start to proceedings last week even if somewhat surprised Blackpool won 4-0 but it just goes to show the unpredictability at the start of a new season and why we keep our powder relatively dry. Speaking of Blackpool I had a long look at the markets for their game away at Arsenal this weekend, which will be the first major test of their defence.
The bookies expect lots of action with under 2.5 goals as short as 1.49 (67% chance of occurring) which seems pretty fair and I also considered the -2 Asian Handicap line on Arsenal at 1.83 with Paddy Power. Last season at home the Gunners won by 3 or more goals (37%) on 7 occasions and by 2 goals on a further 6 occasions (31%). Its worth noting as well that against the bottom 12 teams of the league that you would have lost money only once (The 1-0 game against Wolves) betting on Arsenal -2 at home. It is the start of the season though and Arsenal did not show great penetration away at Liverpool so this is just a shortlist bet this week.
My one main bet this week is on Stoke who face an out-of-sorts Spurs team who will have more than one eye on a crucial Champions League qualifier on Tuesday. Stoke is the last kind of place you want to travel to before such a big game and they have a very decent home record. Spurs also are a much stronger team at home and I fancy the +0.25 Asian Handicap on Stoke at 1.98 with 3 different bookies. We win half our stake even if its a draw and I expect a low-scoring game with few chances, which is the Stoke way.
Other angles that came under scrutiny but didn’t qualify as a bet include Birmingham (-0.25 AH) at 1.98 against Blackburn, however I am very worried about the draw here. The same goes for Man City (-0.25 AH) at 2.02 at home to Liverpool. I also don’t envisage many goals at Eastlands but the bookies seem to have the market about right at 1.73 (57% chance) for the under 2.5 goals option.
A note as well on some season bets I am keeping an eye on including the Wolves – Wigan match bet over at VCbet. With Wigan facing a rampant Chelsea this weekend I feel the odds on this may go out further so will hold fire on this just yet.
1 pt Stoke (+0.25 AH) V Spurs 1.98 Ladbrokes, 188Bet, SBOBet
1 pt Arsenal (-2 AH) V Blackpool. 1.83 Paddy Power
Whatever you bet on, good luck!