The week gone by…
We witnessed an entertaining midweek programme of Champions League football. On Tuesday, Bayern Munich demonstrated their star quality with a professional and efficient away performance to defeat Arsenal 3-1. The German side simply outclassed the Gunners and were best priced 11/10 (2.10) with Paddy Power to win the match. They are now favourites to win the Champions League at a price of 16/5 (4.20) with the same bookmaker.
The highlight of Wednesday’s action saw AC Milan cause an upset by defeating Barcelona 2-0. The San Siro crowd witnessed a Milan team that combined tactical intelligence with footballing quality in what proved to be a superb performance. The Italians were a massive 6/1 (7.0) with Mybet to defeat their Spanish opponents who were priced as short as 1/2 (1.50) with the same bookmaker to register an away win. The correct score could have been backed at 40/1 (41.0) with BetVictor.
Despite, their two goal advantage, Milan can still be backed to qualify from the tie at odds of 3/4 (1.75) with Betway, while Barca are available at a price of 6/5 (2.2) with Bet365. Before the match, the Italian’s were 100/1 (101.0) with Stan James to win the competition. They are now best priced 22/1 (23.0) with Boylesports, with the Spanish side available at 23/5 (5.60) with Pinnacle.
Looking forward to the weekend, the ever popular Premier League is back in action with some interesting fixtures to look forward to. Away from Man United’s commanding lead at the top of the table, there is still plenty to play for throughout the league, with the relegation battle in full flow and the European places still to be decided.
Reading v Wigan (Sat, 3pm)
If the Premier League was based on the last five matches, then Reading would have qualified for the Champions League by finishing third and Wigan would have been relegated having finished bottom of the table. Unfortunately for The Royals, there is much more to a season than five games and the Latics will be thankful for this. Yet, this statistic does demonstrate just where both sides are on current form and Roberto Martinez may well be concerned by his teams recent results. And with Reading and Wigan lying 18th and 19th in the league respectively, this fixture falls in the clichéd six pointer category. I will be backing Reading to continue their improvement by taking all three points and perhaps lift themselves out of the relegation zone (if Aston Villa fail to beat Arsenal).
Match Odds: Reading 17/10 (2.7), Draw 37/15 (3.47), Wigan 2/1 (3.0)
Bet Selection: Reading to beat Wigan @ 17/10 (2.7) with BetVictor
Arsenal v Aston Villa (Sat, 3pm)
Arsenal are strong favourites to win this match as they look to recover from the disappointment of recent weeks and work their way towards securing a Champions League position for the 17th consecutive season. Morale won’t be at its highest in the Gunner’s camp however as they face a Villa side who are sure to try to make life as tough as possible for their opponents as they look to find a way out of the relegation battle. While I can’t see Villa winning, I am heartened by the fact that they have scored 11 goals in their last six games, scoring at least once in each match. I will therefore be taking advantage of a decent price of 5/6 about them scoring against Wenger’s men and it will form the first part of my weekend double.
Man City v Chelsea (Sun, 1:30pm, Sky Sports 1)
This is a must win game for City if they are to realise their ambition of retaining the Premier League title. Chelsea have a chance to go within a point of their opponents. More importantly, its an opportunity to take an extra step towards securing a Champions League position for next season and relieve some pressure on themselves. Anyway, the Blues have scored 25 goals in 13 league games so far this season and I expect them to register again in this one. So that will form the second part of my weekend double.
Bet Selection: Double on Villa to score over 0.5 goals @5/6 and Chelsea to score over 0.5 goals @4/9 with Boylesports. This bet pays 33/20 (2.65).