What Were The Odds Of That?
A couple of upset results to complete the Premier League season. A scandalous penalty in Italy. And a huge shock in the Ukraine. Today on the blog Ed Malyon returns to deliver his round up of all the weekend's football betting across Europe.
There was one big surprise on the Premier League's final weekend as pretty much everything else stayed exactly how it had been at the start of the day.
Norwich won at Manchester City, and far from being a tense smash-and-grab as the rest of their season would have suggested, they outplayed the hosts at the Etihad and won 3-2 thanks to a stunning hit by Johnny Howson.
The average price for the Canaries to win in Manchester was 11.10, the second-highest mark of the season after QPR's January win at Stamford Bridge.
City - as short as 1.22 in places - had nothing to play for and were working under a caretaker manager, but they were backed heavily by punters who ended up paying dearly.
Fulham also turned in a shock with a better than 4/1 return on their 3-0 win at Swansea.
This is Italy
A somewhat controversial finish to the Serie A season saw one of the division's entertainers, Fiorentina, cruelly robbed of Champions League football by some downright embarrassing refereeing.
Siena - long-relegated and Fiorentina's Tuscan rivals - were not expected to put up much of a fight but they produced an outstanding performance to take the lead against the Rossoneri.
Both sides were reduced to ten men but the hosts were resilient and holding out the Milanese side's immense attacking strength with a brave defensive display.
That is, until a scandalous penalty decision gave Mario Balotelli the chance to equalise from the spot just five minutes from the whistle.
He did so, and then Philippe Mexes scored a late winner to complete a turnaround that was at best questionable.
It mean Milan had obliged at 1.2, while rivals Fiorentina had done so at an average price of 1.18 - the only two odds-on winners on the weekend and the only games that meant anything.
There is a correlation there, especially with late-season trends in Italy.
Liga de Champions
In the corresponding chase in La Liga, Real Sociedad and Valencia continued to be absolutely inseparable as both won again to guarantee that the battle for fourth will go into the final weekend of the season.
The relegation picture looks to be three teams fighting it out to try and avoid that final relegation place, with even a victory for Mallorca last weekend leaving them unlikely to survive despite lifting to 19th.
Deportivo La Coruña's win took them out of the drop zone and dragged Osasuna back into it, with the buffer to Granada above increasing thanks to their win in the big crunch clash with the Pamplona club themselves.
Depor's win was expected - priced at 1.58, the shortest price of the week - irrelevant of their poor form and league position due to Espanyol having nothing to play for, but Zaragoza, who would have been expecting a similar game against mid-table Athletic Bilbao, got beat in the biggest upset of the week - touching 5.00.
Some big shocks in Eastern Europe this weekend as champions Shakhtar Donetsk only just avoided relegation to long-relegated and hapless Metalurg Zaporozhye.
The hosts (I'm not typing that again) had scored just NINE goals in their previous 28 league games but suddenly came up with three against the best team in the country to supply a 3-3 draw, best-priced at 6.25.
Even more surprising was Shakhtar's big rivals Dynamo Kiev, who suffered a 3-2 loss at Tavriya, with the average mark a stinking 12.33.
Follow Ed on Twitter : @eaamalyon
You can read more of Ed's thoughts at The Mirror
- Tag: Football