Our weekly betting column from The Sportsman, then. My advice? Read this and his previous articles, become informed. This stuff is absloute gold.
The Champions League is back and I don’t know about you but I am finding these group stages all too stale.
The competition doesn’t become competitive in large until the knock-out rounds come in to play.
With every season that goes by the matches become increasingly predictable and it’s time to make changes. It won’t happen though, there’s too many pockets to be lined.
Manchester United were backed off the boards midweek against Rangers, at a derisory 1-6 the punters were still steaming in. Little did those punters know that Alex Ferguson was dropping ten of the team that played in the Premier League three days before against Everton.
That not only devalues the competition as a whole but makes any self respecting punter take note. I wouldn’t dream of having a punt on the Europa League with my hard earned, with shadow sides being selected from Genoa to Gothenburg.
At this rate the Champions League will get kicked into touch too. For now, lets have a look at the corners markets in the tournament and see how we can line our own pockets.
In the corners markets there are four teams worthy of following: Real Madrid and Bayern Munich are the corner kings of Europe, with Barcelona and Arsenal not far behind. Real Madrid comes with a warning signal though in the flag-kicks market this season with Jose Mourinho taking the reigns.
He is obsessive with defence as a coach though that policy has served him well. It will be interesting to see if their strong corner statistics stand up over this season’s Champions League.
In every match they played in the tournament last season they gained the most corners, a total of eight wins from eight matches. As they average eight more corners than their opponents at the Bernebeau it is worth looking at them around the minus four corners mark for a decent price on the handicap market should Jose let them flourish.
Bayern Munich are currently without Frank Ribery and Arjen Robben which will undoubtedly affect their attacking wing play but they should remain consistent as another corners supremacy side. En route to the Champions League final in 2010 the boys from Munich snared corner supremacy in 11 of their 12 ties.
On the handicaps they are worth following minus two corners at home, a market they won in all six matches last season. Barcelona are a strange one with regards to corners. They also won most corners in 11 of their 12 matches in Champions League 2009-2010.
They tend to be as prolific in winning corners away from home as they are at the Nou Camp. The problem being that the layers know they attack most teams and tend to gain corner supremacy. Look for matches where Barca play teams more close in ability to themselves.
On the corners handicap markets minus two Barcelona brought home the bacon in 75% of matches last season. The strange factor is that there tends to be few corners in their European matches; there were 10 or less corners in 10 of their 12 matches last season and that trend continued with just four in their midweek match against Panathinaikos.
A factor in this low count tends to be Barcelona’s tendency when ahead to play short passes in the middle with Xavi, Iniesta, Busquests and company, such great players at holding possession.
Arsenal are another great side with the ball and in ten matches in last seasons Champions League they won corner supremacy in eight with an equal record of four wins from five both home and away.
Get the value by backing them to win most corners when away from the Emirates.
And here’s a ‘short film’ from Pamela Anderson!…