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football | Monday, March 20, 2023 11:39 AM (Revised at: Tuesday, March 21, 2023 10:27 AM)

Early Bird Best Bets: Early Picks for Four Matches this Week

Early Bird Best Bets: Early Picks for Four Matches this Week
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Early Bird Best Bets: March 21st-26th

Accrington, Forest Green, Portugal and Denmark – an eclectic mix composed of superior footballing talent, plus two opening Euro qualifiers. See the four best bets of the week in bettingexpert Early Bird below:

In this article:

Accrington vs Plymouth Preview

England, League One, Tuesday, March 21st, 19:45 (UK)

The Green Army’s away form has been faltering. Life away from Devon’s rolling green hills has threatened to derail hopes of an automatic promotion berth in recent weeks. It’s a genuine concern, but it’s one that’s often put right by performances at Hone Park.

And that’s precisely why you can back Argyle to get a result away in Accrington at an attractive price. At 1.95, it could be one of those offerings which you look at following the final whistle and think, yeah, I should’ve taken a much healthier position there. Regardless, Argyle’s away form will cause worry for some.

For me, I think it’s worth zooming out and looking at all of their away fixtures in 2023: Sheffield Wednesday (1-0) and Peterborough (5-2) in February and Barnsley (3-0) just two weekends ago in March. Argyle deserved to lose all three, and arguably by a bigger scoreline in Sheffield.

But these three clubs, all mounting a promotion push in some way, shape or form, are tough places to go and get results. Argyle wants to play front-footed attacking football and get at teams. That exact brand of football has won them fans throughout the season – especially at home. Yet, you can come unstuck when you do that against sides with the wind in their sails in unfamiliar surroundings.

There’s no crisis here. Argyle aren’t awful away from home, but it’s certainly something to think about against the bigger and more ruthless teams in League One. Luckily for them and Steven Schumacher, they only face one current top-ten side this campaign in Shrewsbury.

Accrington vs Plymouth Best Bet

So, get past the likes of Accrington on Tuesday night, see off the sides such as Morecambe away after their day out at Wembley, and this fantastically run club in little old Devon will have its chance in the second tier once more.

Accrington are coming off the back of two successive home losses, falling short to Portsmouth and MK Dons. That theme of losing at home has been a constant this season – defeated in 9/18 and winning just three. Not only that, but alarmingly, they’ve scored the fewest goals (10) in front of their fans than any other side in League One.

If Argyle can get on the scoresheet, they may have a chance to snatch all three points.

  • Selection: Plymouth Argyle to Win
  • Best Odds: 1.91(bet365)
  • Stakes: 10/10

More Accrington vs Plymouth Tips

Denmark vs Finland Preview

Euro Qualifiers, Thursday, March 23rd, 19:45 (UK)

The last time these two nations met was at Euro 2021 in sunny Copenhagen. The events which unfolded on that day concerning Cristian Eriksen transcended the sport itself, making the 0-1 Finnish win a mere afterthought.

What can be taken from that fixture, though, is a continuing trend against the better nations. If you go back and cherrypick fixtures against Europe’s top countries, regardless of the score, you’ll see the level of efficiency Finland produces in the final third.

Shots on targets, specifically, will win you games. A lack of them, as we see from this Finnish side, and any hopes of European qualification is up in the air. The list below dates back to the Euros in 2021 and admittedly completely overlooks Finland’s Nations League performances in 2022, highlighting their meetings with similarly matched teams to the Danish one they face this week:

  • W: 0-1 vs Denmark: 1 SOT
  • L: 1-0 vs Russia: 1 SOT
  • L: 2:0 vs Belgium: 1 SOT
  • L: 2-0 vs France: 1 SOT
  • L: 0-2 vs France: 1 SOT
  • L: 2:0 vs Sweden: 1 SOT

Denmark vs Finland Best Bet

The one-shot-on-target trend is odd, yet it shows their struggle to create high-quality opportunities against the leading nations.

With Denmark so dominant in World Cup qualification not too long ago, this could be a wise angle into their opening Euro qualifier. Three games and no win in Qatar – the Danes will be desperate to put that right the only way possible.

  • Selection: Denmark Win to Nil
  • Best Odds: 1.83 (bet365)
  • Stakes: 10/10

More Denmark vs Finland Tips

Portugal vs Liechtenstein Preview

Euro Qualifiers, Thursday, March 23rd, 19:45 (UK)

This will be routine in Portugal. It just depends on how many they’ll score and in which half the goals fall.

Roberto Martínez is set to oversee his first game in charge of Portugal and has expectedly named all the big hitters for the upcoming Euro qualifiers vs Liechtenstein & Luxembourg.

The gulf in quality is significant, but we shouldn’t see Portugal taking the 90 lightly with players keen to stake their claim for a spot in the national team moving forward. Given it’s Martinez’s first match, I’d guess he’d go with what he thinks is his strongest team with a view of sharing minutes around once Portugal reaches an unassailable lead.

Against national sides at their level in the UEFA Nations League in 2022, Liechtenstein lost 6/6, scoring just once away in Andorra and being on the back foot throughout the majority (shots conceded):

  • 2-0 vs Moldova (25)
  • 0-2 vs Andorra (9)
  • 0-2 vs Latvia (23)
  • 2-1 vs Andorra (17)
  • 1-0 vs Latvia (24)
  • 0-2 vs Moldova (11)

Portugal vs Liechtenstein Best Bet

The markets in this match-up had shortened significantly before the Early Bird had a chance to be published, though there’s still a way you can hash out an odds-against price in the hope of complete domination on Thursday.

Two Portugal goals in each half with no reply from the visitors? That should have a chance.

  • Selection: BTTS No & Portugal O1.5 Goals in FH & SH
  • Best Odds: 2.05 (bet365)
  • Stakes: 10/10

More Portugal vs Liechtenstein Tips

Forest Green vs Sheffield Wednesday Preview

England, League One, Sunday, March 26th, 13:00 (UK)

A 1-1 draw at home to Bolton isn’t a bad result, but the way Sheffield Wednesday have been handling themselves of late, that’s what it felt like. And it was probably a fair outcome on the whole.

Fast forward to next Sunday, and The Owls have a different kind of test. Forget Hillsborough and the adoring crowds, and leave any playoff aspirations from the opposing fans at the door. Duncan Ferguson’s Forest Green Rovers on the road – scrapping for their lives in League One – stands as the next escapade.

On the face of things, this should be a Sheffield Wednesday victory any which way you look at it. They’re superior form-wise, boast a much bigger and better squad, and have the players and management team well accustomed to an unforgiving division bursting with sleeping giants and plucky outfits punching above their weight.

Rovers have lost 13/16 recent matches, drawing three. Ferguson’s arrival did bring an uplift in performance, but it hasn’t been enough to get a substantial points return on the board.

It’s so difficult to overlook Sheffield Wednesday here for that reason alone. Especially when we’re offered quotes off odds-against for an away win and two or more goals to be scored in the match. It’s a bet builder that has paid out in ten of the aforementioned 16 bleak matches.

Forest Green vs Sheffield Wednesday Best Bet

The likes of Bristol Rovers, MK Dons, Port Vale, and Burton Albion have all come, conquered, snatched three points and scored more than one goal.

With that kind of recent home record, Sheffield Wednesday will be licking their lips. Darren Moore’s squad is destined for Championship football – a set of players that should hold their own in the second tier. If things go as expected, the hosts may be in for a rough ride.

  • Selection: Sheffield Wednesday Win & O1.5 Goals (TRACKED BET)
  • Best Odds: 2.10 (William Hill)
  • Stakes: 12.5/10

More Forest Green vs Sheffield Wednesday Tips

Odds via bet365 and William Hill as at 09:00 March 20th 2023. Odds may now differ.

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