What Were The Odds Of That?
A relegation six-pointer in the Premier League. PSG slip up in Ligue 1. Just one odds-on winner in La Liga. Today on the blog Ed Malyon once again delivers his wrap up of the weekend's football betting acorss Europe.
Du you think it helped?
Waking up on the morning of a relegation six-pointer to read that your players had spent their free time on a recent warm-weather training camp running up five-figure bar bills is hardly the best sort of preparation.
Harry Redknapp later claimed it was rubbish, before saying he was in a separate hotel so didn’t know, before going on the attack and finally tossing a tasty transfer morsel to the media in an attempt to distract.
It was vintage Redknapp, and that story will have concerned him far more than the other prevailing pre-match narrative which was his return to St Mary’s having relegated Southampton as manager in 2005.
The reception was as frosty as the beers served in Dubai’s Le Meridien hotel, but the only thing that mattered was the result and QPR claimed all three (six, if you prefer) thanks to a late Jay Bothroyd winner.
Given Southampton’s resurgence in recent weeks they were big favourites for this one, but instead it was Rangers – who were best-price 5.67 – in by far the biggest odds winner this weekend.
Did he use the newspaper story to spur his boys on? Maybe. Is he happy about the situation? God no.
Let off le hook
Paris Saint-Germain provided us with the biggest surprise in France this weekend as they blew out pre-match prices of 1.4 to lose at Reims.
With the hosts available outside 13/2 there was some money to be made, and any Olympique Lyonnais fans watching on will have been thrilled at the opportunity to go level on points with the leaders by winning Sunday evening’s game at Stade Brestois.
Kicking off around the 1.8 mark, Lyon fell behind early and although they eventually drew the game and took a point, Brest should arguably have won the encounter.
Nonetheless, it’s an opportunity missed for Les Gones, who must be hoping now that PSG continue their Champions League campaign by eliminating Valencia this week.
Three is the magic number
Something stands out when looking at the prices that came in over the La Liga weekend and that is that eight of the nine completed fixtures cashed in at prices outside 2/1.
All of them were under 3/1 too – note: this is an average – with five of these being draws, away wins for Mallorca and Athletic and a clásico win for Real Madrid at the Bernabeu.
The other game was the first of the weekend and turned out to be the only odds-on winner of the fecha, Getafe’s win at home to Zaragaoza.
With odds of around 1.5, Sevilla have an implied chance of 66.67% against Celta Vigo and will probably ruin our neat little stat but there was plenty of good money to be made in Spain this week.
Big games bringing big prices
Napoli-Juventus was always going to be the focal point of the weekend for it’s potential to reignite the race for the Scudetto, but the 1-1 draw – average price 3.19 – means that the Bianconeri have pretty much got it sewn up now and can concentrate on giving the Champions League a bit of a go.
Elsewhere though, there was a massive game in the chase for that very same competition as team of the moment Catania hosted Inter in a ‘let’s-see-how-many-Argentines-we-can-field’ experiment.
Obviously there were league points on the line as well, and when the hosts went 2-0 up in the first half it looked as if they’d be staying in Sicily and that Catania would leapfrog Inter into the European places.
However, young Andrea Stramaccioni introduced Esteban Cambiasso and, most crucially, Rodrigo Palacio in order to up the Argy-count to 12 and also to turn the game on its head.
Inter went on to win 3-2, a pre-match bet of just outside 2/1 but an in-play bet of epic prices.
Follow Ed on Twitter : @eaamalyon
You can read more of Ed's thoughts at The Mirror