Wednesday, December 07, 2011
I discussed two Champions League games in my notes yesterday, just two btw, they are reproduced below. Both Marseille and Chelsea won, but it is the OM match that I would like to discuss. This was a golden opportunity to win decent money on a single fixture.
If you read my match preview you will know what each team was looking for and when the Dortmund players and coaching staff went back to the dressing room at half time and saw that Olympiakos were 2-0 up, they knew that any dreams of further progression were over. For Marseille, who had pulled a goal back just before the break to trail 2-1, they knew that a win and only a win would see them claim that all important second spot in the group. How is each team going to approach the second half ? Who has everything to play for and all the motivation in the world ? Which team already has one, maybe both eyes on a vital Bundesliga game at the weekend ? The goals came late for OM, but they came and whenever they come , they count and the visitors were never going to give up trying.
You have to try and think about how matches are likely to play out and much of this, is as much about a mental state of mind , as the physical situation. As I am fond of saying, 90% of all sport is played between the ears and getting a team/player onto the field of play, with the right mental approach is absolutely key.
Most people can't be bothered to do the research, even if you present them with all the facts, they are still too lazy to take a minute or two to read them and think about the match/event. To be blunt, that is idiotic IMO, if you are betting for fun/entertainment then fine, if you do not really care if you win or lose and only regard money spent on sports betting as the same as night out at the pub/ restaurant/ cinema, that is your choice and you are no different from the 96% of the betting public who do likewise.
We are back to that hard work ethic here, to make money sports betting you have to work hard and even if you get some help along the way sometimes ( my daily notes ?), you still have to read them and think about your bets.
I have one Champions League selection for today, which I sent my regular readers yesterday afternoon, it is also reproduced, at the foot of this post. It might win, it may not, to be honest it doesn't overly matter to me personally, as I know that I will win, if not today, then tomorrow, next month, or the one after , long term I always do, because I work harder at it than anyone else I know.
Here endeth the sermon for the day !
TUESDAY DECEMBER 6TH
I am going to start in the Champions League and the very "odd" fixture between Borussia Dortmund and Olympique Marseille. Hosts have to win by four or more and hope that Arsenal , who have already won the group and travel without several key players and with a massive domestic holiday campaign on the horizon, get something in Greece against Olympiakos, who are desperate for the three points. There is very little chance of that scenario happening and also, IMO, the worst case scenario for Borussia is that the Gunners win and they narrowly defeat OM and find themselves in the Europa League. The Bundesliga title race looks sure to go down to the wire, as will the battle for CL spots for next season and any further european involvement this time round, in anything other than the premier competition will surely be seen as an unwanted distraction. Dortmund are without Bender, Schmelzer, Subotic and both Leitner and Kehl are doubts and coach Jurgen Klopp is going to make a late decision about what kind of starting eleven he puts out.
I like OM as a side and feel, as I have said many times before, that they are ideally set up to play on the road, where they do not have to make the running. They can afford to lose this game by a narrow margin if Arsenal beat Olympiakos and will also be without a couple of important players, but the difference with them is twofold, one they can win and all other calulations are irrelevant, so at least they are in control of their own destiny and secondly they are a huge price to win (5.0 +) and we can always take a chance, against what might be a leseer motivated opponent at those kind of odds. Marseille to win 5.30 exchanges, there is some 5.50 in places.
At Stamford Bridge, Chelsea entertain Valencia, the Blues will progress with a win or 0-0 draw, but a 1-1 scoreline will see them lose out and already ten points adrift of Manchester City in the title race, the prospect of Europa League football is going to be very hard to swallow for owner Roman Abramovich and will massively increase pressure on coach Andre Villas-Boas . Chelsea do not do too many 0-0 draws and even if this match was heading that way with 20 minutes to go, Valencia would have to open up and look for a goal, which will open up the game and space at the back for the blues to exploit. I expect AVB to stick to his attacking principles, that is why he was bought to the club, not only to bring success, but to do so with some style. In the reverse fixture at the Mestalla, which finished 1-1, Chelsea were coasting, before gifting the hosts a penalty, they created the better chances ( ten on target, a massive number on the road in europe against quality opposition) and it was an awkward fixture for Juan Mata, who had only left Valencia the previous month. Having come to London, to further his career ( as well as the money), he will be desperate not to lose out to his former club and all the spanish players in the home squad tonight will surely be busting a gut to progress. Chelsea usually step up in these must win fixtures at the Bridge and I take them to win and to do so with a touch of class. Chelsea -0.75 ball 2.0 asian line.
WEDNESDAY DECEMBER 7TH
I am going to stick with just the one Champions League match, the tie between Dinamo Zagreb and Olympique Lyonnais. The visitors look to have blown their chance to progress out of the group stage by failing to beat Ajax in France on Matchday 5, now they need to win this, combined with a Real Madrid win in Amsterdam, with a seven goal swing somewhere along the line. That would have been at least a possibility had Real something to play for, but they do not and a handful of their big name players have not even travelled to the Netherlands.
However, a chance is a chance and should Lyon take the lead and then hear from Amsterdam that Madrid are ahead, it will then be "game on ". At the same time that Lyon were toiling against Ajax, Real were thumping Dinamo 6-2 in the Bernabeu, they were 4-0 up inside 20 minutes and could probably have scored eight or more if they had really pushed things, that should at least give Lyon encouragement. Dinamo scored their two goals late on and gave their fans in the stadium something to cheer. If the hosts approach this match in a similar frame of mind, we should at least see some entertaining open football and I think one goal will throw this match wide open, almost regardless of what is happening in the other group game. I make the "over" a solid bet and given Lyon's need for goals and if they can get a couple early, it might increase the pressure on Ajax, allied to the potential mental let down for Dinamo, who go on their winter break after this fixture, the score could really be anything here and over 4.5 goals at circa 7.0 + ( 7.40 on exchanges) and/ or "over" 5.5 goals at 17.0 + ( 17.5 exchanges) might also carry a tiny investment from me, 2-4, 2-5, 1-5 something like that is far from impossible and one of those is available at 200-1. For my main bet, a more cautious 1.5 units "over" 2.5 goals 2.03 asian line.