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Cash-in on Christian Noboa's purple patch...

Friday 18th September 2020

In Across the Leagues today:

  • Weekend angles at 4/1 and 5/1…
  • Top penalty takers in Portugal…
  • Attractive Anytime prices…

Cash-in on Christian Noboa’s purple patch…

We only bet selectively in the Match Result markets. We won’t have hundreds of bets. But when we do make a move on the Win, Lose or Draw options, we’ll only ever be doing so when the odds look to be in our favour.

That was the case last night, with Aberdeen priced as the 9/5 (2.8) or 17/10 (2.7) underdog to beat Norwegian side Viking in the 2nd round of Europa League qualifying. The Scottish club posted a good 2-0 away win.

Meanwhile, in the sweaty realm of the odds-on favourite, Tottenham were very lucky to squeeze past Lokomotiv Plovdiv…

From pre-match odds of just 1/4 (1.25), Spurs found themselves 1-0 down with just 10 minutes to go.

The Bulgarians helped them out by having two men sent off. Tottenham got through, 2-1. But would you want to be sweating on short, must-win prices like that, with the final whistle approaching? I wouldn’t.

Elsewhere in the short prices, Rangers progressed with a 5-0 win in Gibraltar. And Zlatan Ibrahimovic (who else) opened the scoring for AC Milan, with the Italian giants winning 2-0 at Shamrock Rovers. Wolfsburg won 4-0 in Albania, with Wout Weghost scoring a brace for the German side.

AC Milan and Wolfsburg play their opening leagues games in Serie A and the Bundesliga on Monday and Sunday evening, respectively. If Ibrahimovic and Weghorst are in the starting line-ups, they’re worth looking out for. Of the two, you’ll get the bigger odds for Weghorst. Zlatan is a headline name and as such, he’s rarely much of a price to score.

Scorer stats and penalty pointers…

I expect to be doing a lot of business in the First & Anytime Scorer markets this season. As with Match Results, and any other category for that matter, we’re especially interested in off-the-beaten track options – and prices that catch the eye…

With week one kicking off in Italy, Germany, and Portugal this weekend. As well as seven games of form already in the book in the Russian Premier League. Here are my notes, and standout players & prices, for this weekend…

  • Andreas Gruber gave us a couple of nice payouts in the Austrian Bundesliga last season. He’s now signed for title challengers LASK Linz, and landed 5/1 First Scorer odds on his league debut last weekend. The trouble this weekend is, as I write, I can’t see any bookies with Goalscorer markets up for Saturday’s game between WSG Swarovski Tirol and LASK Linz

In Monday’s analysis I mentioned two Serie A penalty takers…

  • Genoa left back Domenico Cristico scored 8 goals in Serie A last term – and all 8 of them were penalties. His strike-rate from the spot was 8 out of 10

On Sunday, Genoa start their season at home to newly-promoted Crotone. Cristico is around 4/1 (5.0) to score, and that looks worth taking…

Crotone gave away a penalty in their only meeting with a Serie A club last season, v Sampdoria in the Coppa Italia. Last season, newly-promoted Lecce conceded two penalties in their opening four Serie A games. And Hellas Verona conceded three pens in their first four games.

  • Fiorentina midfielder Erick Pulgar is another to look out for from the spot this season. He scored 7 times last season – and all 7 of them were penalty kicks. Overall, he took 8 pens, only missing one. Fiorentina start against Torino this weekend, with Pulgar topping out at 11/4 (3.75) to score Anytime

With the Portuguese league also kicking off this weekend, here are three men of note from 2019/20 when it comes to penalties…

  • Mehdi Taremi (forward) – scored 7 out of 7 penalties in the league in 2019/20. Champions Porto’s new signing for 2020/21. Was joint-top scorer in the Portuguese top-flight last season, with 18 goals for Rio Ave
  • Fabio Martins (forward) – scored 6 out of 7 pens for Famalicao last season. Joined Braga for this season
  • Alex Telles (left back) – scored 8 out of 10 pens for Porto last season. Currently linked with a move to Man Utd

Out of those penalty pointers, Domenico Cristico is my pick for this weekend, at 4/1 to score for Genoa.

Tight on the Top Goalscorers…

We’ll also have a big involvement in the ante post and Outright markets throughout 2020/21.

Top Goalscorer is an area we’ve done well in before. We’ve already got a few good Each Way prices in the book for this campaign. You can view a list of all our open bets so far here.

In terms of the three leagues that start this weekend, it’s been a poor pre-season showing from the oddsmakers…

In Germany, we’ve already discussed this week how the bookies appear to be chicken, shying away from offering any Each Way options. And instead, betting Win Only in the Bundesliga, with Robert Lewandowski odds-on to be Top Goalscorer for the third season running.

Serie A in Italy at least has an Each Way market available…

Cristiano Ronaldo was 7/4 (2.75) favourite last season, and came 2nd. This time, the Juventus man is 2/1 (3.0). My warning stat there is that, while Juventus have won the Serie A title nine times in a row, and are 10/11 (1.91) jollies to make it 10 this season, Juve haven’t produced the outright Golden Boot winner in any of those past nine triumphs.

Ciro Immobile was the 16/1 Serie A winner for us in 2019/20. This time, the Lazio striker is 7/1 at best.

Atalanta were the top scoring team in Serie A last season. Picking one of their scorers over another is tricky though…

Duvan Zapata scored 18 league goals in that campaign. He’s 10/1. Luis Muriel also scored 18 times for Atalanta. He’s 20/1 and 22/1. Teammate Josep Ilicic bagged 15 from midfield last term; he’s also 20/1 & 22/1.

In Serie A, the bookies are betting 1/4 odds Each Way for the top 3 places (Bet365, William Hill, Paddy Power, Betfair Sportsbook).

While in Portugal, William Hill are the only bookmaker that’s bothered to price up a Top Goalscorer market.

We’re not making any outright moves in those leagues as of yet. And we might not be at all, if the bookies don’t play ball. Getting sucked in to a Win Only market, or a short price for a favourite, is a road to the poor house.

Weekend angles at 4/1 and 5/1…

Along with Domenico Cristico for Genoa at 4/1, there are two more players that catch the eye at attractive Anytime Scorer prices this weekend…

The Russian Premier League is new on our website this season. The Russians are seven games in to the new season, and that means there’s some tangible form in the book already.

Russian Premier League Scorers

Two midfielders have popped up in front of goal several times in the opening weeks:

  • Christian Noboa (Sochi) – 5 goals, 5 x Anytime Scorer (1st), 2 x First Scorer
  • Konstantin Kuchaev (CSKA Moscow) – 4 goals, 4 x Anytime Scorer & 4 x First Scorer (twice as many First Scorer payouts as any other player so far)

Christian Noboa is enjoying something of a purple patch lately. Five goals in Sochi’s first seven games of the season is eye-catching. Whether or not the 35-year-old Ecuadorian can keep it up once the Russian winter bites is another matter. But right now, with odds as big as 5/1 available to hit the back of the net again this weekend, he’s one to follow.

Age 22, there could certainly be more to come from Konstantin Kuchaev. The Russian has got four goals in seven appearances for CSKA Moscow so far in 2020/21. Standout odds of 9/2 (5.5) make him one for the list this weekend, too.

Attractive Anytime prices…

Those 4/1, 9/2, and 5/1 odds are very much the kind of prices we want to be targeting. Those Anytime Scorer odds are bigger than you’ll get for the more well-known names to score First.

For example, Ronaldo is just 2/1 to score Firstfor Juventus (v Sampdoria) this weekend. And odds-on at 8/15 (1.53) at best to score Anytime.

Ditto in the Bundesliga tonight, where goal machine Lewandowski is just 7/4 (2.75) in general to open the scoring for Bayern Munich (v Schalke), and short-odds on to find the net Anytime, at 1/4 (1.25).

The bigger prices are the ones for us.

Today’s picks

Italy Serie A

Genoa v Crotone
Sunday 2pm

  • Anytime Scorer: Domenico Cristico @ 24/5 (5.8) with 888 Sport, Unibet, 4/1 (5.0) Bet365, Paddy Power, Betfair Sportsbook, VBet

Russian Premier League

Arsenal Tula v PFC Sochi
Sunday 12 noon

  • Anytime Scorer: Christian Noboa @ 5/1 (6.0) with Bet365, VBet, 10/3 (4.33) Paddy Power, Betfair Sportsbook, 3/1 (4.0) Betway 

FC Ufa v CSKA Moscow
Sunday 12 noon

  • Anytime Scorer: Konstantin Kuchaev @ 9/2 (5.5) with Bet365, 11/4 (3.75) Paddy Power, Betfair Sportsbook, 5/2 (3.5) Skybet

Have a good weekend. And enjoy the football…

Best wishes,

Oliver Upstone

Oliver Upstone

Across the Leagues