Bet Review: Palace, Isak, Leicester

Brighton v Palace

Palace demise was overhyped in my view and I placed €4 on Palace to be 2-0 up at half time at 70.0. Palace did have the majority of the chances in the first half as well as in the game itself winning the xG 0.59 to 1.21 with the better xG chances being created in the First half.

Brighton went into half time 1- 0 so the bet didn’t land, but I am happy with the bet and if the game repeated it had a strong chance of landing.

Forest v Newcastle – Isak hat-trick – 70.0 – €4

Isak is coming into the team recently and scored in the previous game and from reports was almost unplayable at times. Based on this and also that Forest have been playing poorly and are missing so many important defensive players, I liked the look of an Isak hat trick at 70.0.

Isak finished the game with 2 goals as well as hitting the bar (via a deflection) in the first half. His xG for the game was 1.59. All in all this was a great bet.

Brentford v Leicester – Leicester to win 2-1 at HT (100.0 €2), Iheanacho to score 2 (24.0 €4)

Leicester won the game on xG 0.48 v 1.42 which backs up the analysis to bet on them. They have created plenty of chances in their past two games but haven’t put them away. I thought Rogers would keep Iheanacho upfront and decided to back him to score 2. But actually Daka was preferred and Iheanacho was on the bench. I made the mistake again of not waiting for the team sheets and so lost this bet.

Leicester have had a habit of conceding and then scoring in the league in the past few games so when Brentford scored I placed a bet for Leicester to be winning (2-1 at HT). However, they didn’t create much in the time with only one chance of note. Given the odds this bet was fine.

Wolves v Leeds – Leeds to be winning 2-0 at HT, €4, 27.0

Wolves have such an unsettled side it really did wave a number of red flags. The new manager Lopetegui is now dropping players he signed like Sarabia and bringing in players he didn’t fancy initially like Podence. Neto was also back in and so the Wolves line up is resembling the team under Lage. This also signals to me that his messages are not transferring well with the squad.

Looking at the Leeds line up they had a much more settled look to them which can be a bonus. Also with both teams under pressure of relegation it can often mean that it is harder to play at home in these games and easier to play away. So I felt that Leeds were really the favourites in this game and thought they might win the first half.

The game was 1-0 to Leeds at HT and 4-2 at FT. Leeds didn’t create many other chances in the first half but it did score again early in the second half. The probability of this bet winning was much lower than 27.0, so a decent punt.

Arsenal v Palace – Palace TNHT 90.0, €4, Palace Score 4 and win, 280.0

I fully expected Arsenal to win and began the research looking at players for a potential hat trick such as Martinelli. However, the odds were too short and I felt obliged to back Palace given the odds available. They might have scored early and then the odds would have tumbled and I could have laid out for a profit. Zaha did hit the post at nil nil but Arsenal soon clicked into gear and ran out 4-1 winners.


The €100 I started with in December has now reached zero. I reached a high of over €1,000 after one month but really poor staking in February meant I lost €450 when I probably should have only lost €50.

So I will be re-loading now and aiming to do better with the staking of the bets. I am happy with the picks. The odds are high so the wins are not frequent. I probably can win every fifth or sixth bet but need to be making 2-3 well researched bets each week for this strategy to pay dividends long term.

I love the international breaks so will be keeping an eye on the games and researching potential opportunities.

Bet Review: Martinelli to score and other weekend bets

Martinelli to score two goals at 17.0 was the main bet of the weekend but it didn’t land this time, but how close was it and a long term winning strategy?

Martinelli scored once against Fulham but also had two other clear chances to score in the first half. One where his shot was deflected in but he was ruled offside and a later chance in the half where he went close. Arsenal went into energy conservation mode in the second half and he was subbed on 77 minutes.

It was a surprise to see Trossard start and Jesus on the bench. I would have thought that while this reduced minutes it might have increased competition and kept them pushing on. So at 17.0 for him to score twice and 120.0 for him to score three I think this had a higher probability of coming in and would place this bet again.

Bet Review: Leicester to be winning at HT at 160.0 for €4

At 31 minutes Leicester were 1-0 down and I placed a bet on them to be winning at half time at 160.0.

The reasoning being they have twice come from behind in the first half this year against Villa and Spurs.

They did come back into the game, getting a goal at 40 minutes and half three more shots on goal shortly after that and were very close to scoring. It would have been a sensational bet if it landed.

Nevertheless, this is a trend to follow for the remainder of the season.

Leicester have also been creating a high number of chances in the past two games and are worth following closely.

Bet Review: Pervis Estupinan to have a shot on target at 4.4 for €4

He have a shot on goal from inside the box but it was over the bar. He has continued his run of getting of shot off in nearly every game over the past ten games.

This wasn’t a great bet and I should avoid in future.

Bet Review: Brentfort to win against Everton, 22.0, €4

Brentford have been very resilient in their unbeaten run over the past 12 game unbeaten run but couldn’t find enough to come back. I backed them at 1-0 down. They won the xG 1.95 so did create enough chances but couldn’t convert them. I am happy enough with this bet given the odds.

Thomas Frank has a good record of making the right changes with his subs and having seen the damage that Schade did against Fulham thought he might have made more of an impact against a weak Everton defense.

However, they created one big chance after the two subs on 65 minutes but little after that.

The bank is now at €35.

Martinelli to score twice, 17.0

Arsenal play Fulham today with it set for Gabriel Martinelli to score at least twice at 17.0 or three times at 120.0.

Martinelli has averaged three shots on goal a game in this past ten games at home in the league (excluding Man City).

Nketiah and Jesus are out with Trossard being a doubt. Arteta has said that he can play a winger or a false nine as a forward. In games this Martinelli has effectively played as a forward even though he is officially playing on the left wing or forward position, even with Nketiah in the side. We can see this from his Brighton heatmap in this review from January.

Fulham have only kept two clean sheets at home in the league this season, averaging 1.3 goals conceded in their 13 games. The shut outs were to Everton and Forest and their xG in those games show that they gave up enough chances to let in a goal.

We also know that Fulham have been hugely overperforming in their expected goals conceded, by 15 goals.

In their two matches this season with their defensive midfielder Joao Palhinha they conceded 3.5 goals (4 at home to Newcastle and 3 away to Brentford).

Martinelli is also slightly underpeforming his xG this season at home with 12.85 vs 11 goals. He scored two goals in the 4-1 win at home to Everton two games ago.

Arsenal also won the away game 2-1 with an xG of 2.47 v 0.93.

On the negative side, Fulham have only not scored at home twice this season (Everton, Spurs) so will prove a threat. Their xG in the past four games has been overperforming with a number of excellent long range goals from Soloman and Palhinha.

Arsenal also had the Europa League game away to Sporting on Thursday, drawing 2-2 in a competitive game. Martinelli played the full game and had two shots saved. One was from a fantastic run from midfield, beating a number of players along the way which would have been one of the goals of the season, so the man is in fine form.

All in all, if Martinelli gets the breaks during the game he can bag a hatrick. Fulham’s team are excellent at anticipating the play, but with so much threat from different positions in this Arsenal side that will really push their ability to anticipate what’s going to happen. This will lead to chances and if Martinelli is the player closest to goal, then he can bag a few goals.

He is priced at 17% probability to score. Give than Fulham will likely concede 3 if not 4 goals, I think he should be a bit lower to score two of them. So placing a big percentage of the budget on this outcome.


Martinelli to score 2, €6, 17.0
Martinelli to score 3, €5, 120.0

Bank: €35

Bet Preview: Leeds Brighton

Leeds haven’t showed much going forward yet under their new manager. Their best possession spell was in the Cup game where they switched to a 4-3-3 formation, but in the game last week Gracia reverted back to 4-2-3-1. They have not scored in three of their last four league games and this is in line with their xG.

Brighton under DeZerbi are flying and have really adapted well to his demands. They are an outside bet for top four. They have absolutely dominated their last four league games, generating an average xG of 2.85, three of those games were at the Amex Stadium but even away to Palace it was 2.65 and Leeds are a much less solid team than Palace.

Leeds have felt brittle this season under Marsch and Gracia has a reputation for being defensively solid and while it feels like he has improved them, it is really too early to say. The win against Southampton was a very scrappy game in which they got a piece of luck in their goal. Against a Chelsea side last week that has also been struggling they created an xG of 1.87.

It is hard to spot much value in the markets given as most Brighton’s form has been priced in already.

Fishing for value I am going to back a guy who gets forward a lot and has a record of shooting to have a shot on target. Pervis Estupinan has had shots on goal in eight of the last nine league games. None of those shots have been on target. Seven of his eleven shots have been outside the box.

He is 4.4 to have a shot on target against Leeds. He had shots away to Palace, Leicester and Everton, so he should find space today against Leeds. His xG per 90 is only 0.02 however I am expecting Brighton to dominate Leeds today and should have a number of shots outside the box and perhaps he is due to hit the target.


Pervis Estupinan to have a shot on target. €6. 4.4

Previews: All Big Teams to Win

Looking over this weeks fixtures, it feels like each of the bigger sides that are expected to win, should win. Usually, I am looking at the potential weak points in the bigger teams and the stronger points in the weaker teams and then look to pick the right bet, however this time is the opposite.

Bournemouth v Liverpool

Bournemouth have improved since they made a number of January transfers in as I outlined in the preview to the Wolves game where I judged that they might win. However, they were actually very poor in that game and looked fearful of the idea of losing that game. If they had then they would have really started to be cut adrift at the bottom.

They were comfortably beaten by Man City at home and were comfortably outplayed by Arsenal last week even though they were so close to getting a draw.

In this game Lerma starts but is carrying a knock, but it might affect his mobility and or his expected minutes in the game.

Games like this are curious as I have often seem that when a team beats another by a large score in one game they can often struggle to score in the reverse fixture. The xG in the 9-0 game was 4.86 to 0.18, so Bournemouth didn’t get much luck on the day.

Typically I would be looking for a Bournemouth angle on this game but they seem to have low confidence in their ability – I am concluding this from being ahead at Wolves and Arsenal. Wolves are so poor in attack that Bournemouth were able to hold on but against this Liverpool side it looks unlikely that they can hold them off.

Liverpool are 1.43 or 69% likely to win and I find it hard to disagree with that given how well Liverpool played last week against Man United winning 7-0. They have players coming back from injury and so the standards are going up.

It feels more likely that Liverpool will take the lead in this game. If the do then that could take the pressure off Bournemouth and it might then be an opportunity to lay Liverpool. Bournemouth showed against Arsenal that they can counter attack and the have scored now in their last four games, which included Arsenal, Man City, Newcastle and Wolves, which is in line with their xG, so we can expect Bournemouth to score at some point.

Liverpool have

Gakpo’s finishes last week were top class and so I am going to back him to continu his form, by placing a bet on him to score any time at 3.0.

Dango Ouattara had started well for Bournemouth in his first few games and has contributed to the attack in all of them. He is 6.8 to score any time and 8.6 to have two shots on target. He has gone close a number of times so I’ll place a small bet on him to break his Bournemouth duck and score today.


Gakpo score any time. 3.0. €8

Ouattara to score any time. 6.8. €4

Bank: €60

Bet Review: Liverpool v Man United

After going on a losing run with many of those bets losing when going against Man United I fell into the gambler’s trap of looking for certainty in an outcome and was very lazy in my thinking.

Liverpool humiliated Man United yesterday 7-0 (3.44 v 0.84 xG). It was a stunning result. But one where it was not wholly unpredictable. I mean that in the sense that United form was going to have a collapse in performance at some point given the sheer number of games they have played this year, literally a game every three or so days.

Ten Hag’s philosophy means that he prefers to keep a winning team, so little rotation. I had bet against United a month ago on the basis that tiredness might creep in. However, that didn’t happen that game and they played eight more games after that, winning six and drawing two.

I also felt that Ten Hag was watching the sport science data closely to see if any of his players were tiring and in need of a rest and if so he could rest them if he had too. However, there isn’t any sport science for mental fatigue.

The run of big games can also hide tired legs as players increase their performance levels as they set their sights on achieving their ambitions such as getting to the League Cup Final and winning it; beating Barcalona in the UEFA Cup as well as thinking they were in with a chance of winning the English Premier League this season.

They got through all those games and it began to look like Ten Hag had created a machine that really clicking into gear and was able to grind out results. You could say in their last six games they were somewhat fortunate to get the results they did as the teams they were playing missed a number of chances at decisive moments during the game.

Examples of this can be found in the Leeds, Leicester league games, the first Barca game as well as the League Cup Final against Newcastle and in the midweek game against West Ham. Liverpool though were quitely on the rise…

They had more breaks between their games, they had more players coming back from longer term injury, they had the hurt of their underperformance this season and their own humiliation in their second last home games to Real Madrid. Klopp said he could see their performance levels improving in the Wolves games where they won 2-0.

During the first half of the United game it was very close, particularly on xG. However, the dynamics of the games changed in the second half, when United went looking for a higher gear when none was to be found, while Liverpool when looking for higher gears and found three.

What Can Be Learned?

Ten Hag looked rattled in the interview after the game. I can only imagine the shouting match that went on in their dressing round after the game. It will be interesting to watch how their key defensive players perform in the coming games such as Casemiro and Varane. They are big characters so should step up but lets see how the morale in the camp is now.

They will also be increasingly tired with the long run of matches and I’m sure there will be players playing with minor injuries. On top of that did Klopp’s team give clues to other teams how best to get at this United team?

With only the FA Cup and UEFA Cup realistically to play for now, will that be enough motivation for their top players? Liverpool are only seven points behind them in the league and will be hunting them for a top four place too. That will bring its own pressure.

In addition, the uncertainty of the takeover means that forming transfer plans for bringing players in might add to the frustration. And Rashford still has yet to sign a new deal.

This run United have gone on reminds me of the runs of Mourinho and Ole, which looked like their were making progress but the behind the scences hassles dragged them back into mediocraty. Has Ten Hag just got a bounce out of the players for adding a level of struture and organisation as well as a post Ronaldo bounce?

Time will tell but I am not optimise for them, especially given that other clubs are being funded to compete with them and do not have the legacy pressures that come with this Man United side, with greats in the Boardroom and on the TV panels judging this team against their teams, which is never a fair comparison.

Key players in this side like Casemiro are also at their peak but will not be replaced. Selling the likes of Fred or McTominay may only make the squad lighter if the right transfers do not come in. And with so much spent on transfers last summer, that might leave the situation even more difficult for Ten Hag next year.

The bank is now at €76. I need to take each bet seriously.

Bet Preview: Liverpool V Man United

United to gain a revenge win against Liverpool today. For the past few years United have been embarrassed by Liverpool suffering a number of humbling defeats, but this time the opportunity is for them to inflict a big defeat on Liverpool.

United have put in a number of impressive performances this year and are only improving. There have been a series of big performances in the past two months and that will continue today, plus an extra push for past defeats.


United to win, scoring 4 or more, 21.0, €10
United to win, -1, 6.4, €10
United to win 2-0 at HT, 19, €8
United to win 4-2, 90.0, €4
United to win 5-2, 310, €3

Bet Review: Saturday’s Punting

Bet: Newcastle to win in running at 0-1, 32.0, €4

When Man City when 1-0 up, Newcastle were priced at 32.0. Given how many times Man City have conceded after they have scored this season, I had thought it was good value to bet on Newcastle to comeback.

The xG timing chart doesn’t really support that this was a particularly good bet. The highlights though show that Newcastle had three good openings after City scored. However, they lacked the quality to take them under the pressure of the situation.

Howe again failed to generate an impact when he made his subs. This is something to keep track of.

Bet: Tottenham to score four and win against Wolves, 23.0, €4

Having been following Wolves closely this season, I wasn’t impressed with their starting line up. Too many passengers for my liking particularly upfront, while I anticipated a bit of responce from Spurs getting knocked out of the FA Cup during the week.

True enough Wolves didn’t create one chance until into the second half when they made a number of subs to change things up. Tottenham had a number of good chances but didn’t take them. Typically this season they have been clinical this season with a 12% shot conversion rate this season.

Tottenham have also been stronger in the second half, while Wolves have tended to fade in the second half, conceding 24 goals compared to 11 in the first half. The expectation was the Spurs would keep going to the end after their cup defeat.

In the end, Wolves scored late in the game as the managers changes really improved the play of the side.

Bet: Chelsea to score 4 and win, 17.0, €4

This was placed in running during the first half when Chelsea had had two clear goal scoring opportunities. The thinking was that Chelsea need to win and win well, while Leeds are likely still quite a poor team and are open to conceding when playing a high line, which they would need to when chasing the game.

In the end, Chelsea won 1-0 off and xG of 1.87. They are still not taking their chances. If they had of taken them earlier maybe things might have opened up.

It is wiser to take a less aggressive approach when betting on Chelsea as the market expectation on them is still high.

Bank is now: €114

Missed Opportunites & Future Opportunites

There were no high odds missed opportunties that I could see yesterday. I felt it was a day for patience but also felt like dabbling a bit.

Luke Ayling again got forward for Leeds and had one shot on goal (xG 0.04).

Ouattara for Bournemouth had one shot on target against Arsenal as well as contributing the key pass for the first goal.

Bet Review: Fulham Leeds

Fulham beat Leeds 2-0 in the FA Cup last night in a game that I speculated that Leeds could win by two goals and placed bets on: Leeds Score 4 and Win, 2-0 HT, 4-1 Leeds and also laid Fulham in running while they were 2-0 up.

Leeds set up in a 4-3-3 formation which I was happy to see since the blog has suggested that they move to this formation to better suit the players in their squad. Under Gracia they played a more possession based game under this formation and looked a much better side. The stats actually don’t back this up, with Leeds having 46% possession away to Fulham yesterday while they have averaged 50% on average this season. Interesting.

The xG on this game showed Fulham 0.2 to 1.34 for Leeds. Fulham scored two cracking goals from distance while Leeds had two goals ruled out in the first half for a foul and offside; they also hit the post later in the game. The game seemed to become more frantic in the second half which I thought suited Leeds. They were at least two goal mouth scrambles in second half which could easily have dropped at the feet of a Leeds player, but didn’t.

What can we learn from this match?

Fulham play Brentford on Monday night and will be without Joao Palinha which is a big loss. So their defence will be under more pressure. Fulham are a lay from me for the foreseeable future and they are on the otherside of the xG numbers for a few games.

Leeds away play Chelsea and on Chelsea’s form you would have to fancy them. But Leeds are still not yet convincing enough. So I weigh this up between now and the weekend.

Bet Review: Phil Foden to Score 2, €6, 12.8; Silva Score 2 at 30.0, €4

I had no real reservations about Man City away to Bristol City and expected a comfortble win. Given that Foden score and went close a few times last weekend I decided to back him to score 2 (along with Silva) and this bet eventually came in. Foden should be hungry and less wasteful given that he has been out of the side for a few months. He took his chances well but likely won’t get to start for City at home to Newcastle on Saturday.

Bet Review: Blackburn to be winning 2-0 at HT against Leicester, 100.0, €2

Leicester have been conceding many chances in their past few games and I thought it was worth a small bet in running in this game, while it was scoreless. Blackburn capitalised on a mistake from Amartey in the first half to go in 1-0 up and then scored early in the second half to go into a 2-0 lead. So while the bet lost, it went close.

Bank is now at: €148 going into tonights games.