Spotlight

Finding The Right Balance

POSTED: 26 September 2014


MESUT Ozil was a ``missing'' entity for Arsenal prior to the weekend that has just passed.


There was something in him that everyone is looking for that was perceived as not just being there in his previous displays.


But last Saturday, Ozil ``resurfaced'' and gave his critics an emphatic answer. To his fans, and more so to Gunners boss Arsene Wenger and his teammates, he handed them what a £42-million player should do.


 

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The Veterans

Chelsea To Stay 100%


POSTED: 26 September 2014




So my winning run for the new season ended last week after I picked Swansea +1.5 against Chelsea. I know we say we can’t win them all, but when you’re on a good run it sometimes feels like that. It’s ok though, I’m just leading my friendly neighborhood bookie into thinking he’s getting some of his money back!


So onto this week and I’m sticking with Chelsea but this time I’m backing them to win. They go to current champions City in the last fixture of gameweek 5 and remain the only side in the league with a 100% record.


Simply speaking right now Chelsea are on fire, how Arsenal must regret not taking up their first option on Cesc Fabregas who bedded right into the Chelsea side. Costa


having hit 7 goals in 4 games is justifying his transfer fee and in general they’re playing some great stuff under Mourinho.


City meanwhile have had a mixed start and come the time of the game will have played Arsenal and Bayern Munich in the last week. This game finished 1-0 to Chelsea last season and I expect another tight game with Mourinho I’d expect wanting to stifle the City midfields supply to the forward line.


I’m going for Chelsea to keep up their 100% record and increase the lead they have over the current champs to 8 points.


Pick – Man City v Chelsea – Chelsea to win @ 2.8

Early Derby


POSTED: 26 September 2014




Okay so I lost half of my bet in the last match I put money on, didn’t expect Arsenal to put on a thrashing against Aston Villa. Thankfully, I put a decent amount on overs and didn’t feel much of the loss – actually won a bit more than expected.


Now I continue with the EPL and, of course, the Merseyside Derby will be the topic. Both teams are going through a lot and have yet to find their stride.


Liverpool, expected to be title challengers despite the departure of Luis Suarez, have only amassed six points in five matches. Currently 11th in the table, Brendan Rodgers’ men have not gotten the scoring they wanted to have, while their defence is still one of their weak points.


However, expect the team to progress as the season goes, and a win over their rivals should help them get their heads back on track.


Meanwhile, Everton have also had their share of poor performances – only winning on league match out of five. At 14th place in the league, Roberto Martinez is surely trying to find out where to start as they fix their strategies in a very unpredictable league.


And they will not be handed an easy task as they travel to Anfield against Liverpool, but a decent performance, and even a result, will go a long way in their attempt to turn things around in the early stages of the season.


In their last six meetings across all competitions, Liverpool have won three times, the latest being a 4-0 thrashing at home. The other three have ended in draws so it is easy to expect the Reds to take this one.


Looking at Dafabet, a Liverpool win pays 1.82, while an Everton win pays 4.03. If the match ends in a draw, 3.67 is paid.


I am leaning on the Reds finally getting a much-needed win. They won’t be as dominant as their last meeting, but even a 1-0 result in favour of the hosts would be a good result.


Pick –Liverpool win @ 1.82

Wenger’s Winning


POSTED: 26 September 2014




I kind of knew it in my heart that Leicester had it in them to orchestrate a win against Manchester United, but the latter’s very good performance against QPR made me think twice. I lost the bet, sadly, but I was right to think that the Foxes belong in the Premier League, and I will go far to say that they might finish in the Top 12 this season.


Anyway, with last week’s affairs over, we should concentrate on the coming league matches, especially with the North London derby between Arsenal and Tottenham at Emirates Stadium.


Dafabet has been watching the capital clubs closely, as they are right to be favoring Arsene Wenger’s men in the upcoming showdown. Imagine Dafabet will pay only 1.74 for an Arsenal win while giving out 4.53 for a Spurs’ victory? In one way, they might be correct, as these two are in different trajectories in the Premier League this season.


For the Gunners, they might be on their way to finish higher than fourth this season, with their summer hauls paying off in their arduous early schedule. With nine points in their first five matches that included a fixture against defending champions Manchester City and visits to very solid teams in Everton and Leicester City, I think they did very well.


Mauricio Pocehttino’s men, on the other hand, seemed to have fallen off their tracks, scrounging up only a single point in their last three matches after coming up with six points in their first two. I know Spurs will come back and will string together some good fixtures, but they might find it hard to start winning against a very motivated Arsenal.


The North London rivalry has always been a healthy one, and despite Arsenal winning five of the last six meetings punters like me usually make money off the handicap bets.


Dafabet offers a 2.01 payout for an Arsenal win against a -0.75 handicap. And seeing how Arsenal won the matches by an average of two goals per match, I think it is safe to put your money in this handicap.


Pick. Arsenal vs. Tottenham Hotspur. -0.75 against Arsenal. Arsenal win @2.01

What Did The Foxes Say?


POSTED: 26 September 2014




It looks like my tough weeks are not yet at an end, as Aston Villa got demolished by Arsenal 0-3 at Villa Park last week. In a very, very quick span of three minutes the Gunners took a 3-0 lead and held on for the win, holding off every late rally that the Villans tried to mount.


Luckily, I still have money to stake this week, and with the match between Crystal Palace and Leicester City catching my eye, I think I also see better weeks up ahead.


All my hopes of recovering from the losses during the last few weeks will be in this very good match featuring the Eagles and the Foxes at Slehurst Park.


Crystal Palace are once again looking like the team that surged up the table just at the tailend of last season, with their last success coming in the form of a 3-2 come-from-behind victory over Everton at Goodison Park. Sure, the Eagles just have five points after the first five games this term but if they repeat their performance like the one in Merseyside I am sure they can crack their way into near the top half by Christmas.


Leicester, too, are coming off a great game, trouncing Manchester United 5-3 after going down 1-3 in just 57 minutes. Manager Nigel Pearson did well to tell his wards to stay focused and determined to fight through, as the hosts at KP Stadium outran and outplayed United in the last 30 minutes of the match on their way to their improbable triumph.


These sides have not met since they were both in the Championship division in the 2012-2013 season, so they might not be that familiar when they finally face each other again in the English top flight.


Dafabet also expects this match to be a tight one, as they are giving very fair odds in this match. A Crystal Palace win will net me 2.56, while a win for the Foxes will give me 2.66 and a draw returns 3.29. Hard to pick one right? Especially given the fact that these two sides fight with relentlessness and devotion each time they go on the pitch.


But as punters, would we have liked it any other way?


Pick: Crystal Palace vs. Leicester City. Draw @ 3.29

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