Tottenham’s title claims laid on the line
September 30th, 2016 | Ian Carnaby's Sports News
Last weekend showed the wisdom of shopping around for value. The 15-unit double on Bournemouth and Leeds, both odds against, ensured a handy profit and one more goal from Peterborough against Walsall would have paid the bills for a few weeks. I can’t quite get Walsall right. This was another 1-1 draw after a good effort at Bristol Rovers (same score) but at home the other night they were brushed aside by high-flying Scunthorpe.
Still, a good weekend and I wish there were similar opportunities this time but the prices about the ‘good things’ in the Premier League are too short. By contrast, I must admit I wonder what the bookmakers have heard which prompts them to offer BRENTFORD at 11/10 (Betfred) against Wigan in the Championship.
Wigan did well against Wolves last time but otherwise they seemed to be in freefall following five straight defeats on their ravels. Maybe the layers think this depressing sequence has to end somewhere but Brentford are a fine attacking side under Dean Smith and score plenty of goals at Griffin Park. I freely admit it looks too good to be true at the price on offer but you can’t really approach betting in that way and I’d have to be with the home team here.
The Champions League will have a significant bearing on the outcome of the title race in the top section and much depends on how far the big names go and how the injury list stands up. Personally I wouldn’t go anywhere near Manchester City at odds-on, not because I doubt their ability – there is something effortless about their football – but simply because I’m not convinced the defence is good enough or they have the overall strength for two major competitions.
Tottenham, who looked truly outstanding value to me at the 22/1 I saw quoted the other day, are already covering most positions with a two-pronged assault in mind. Mauricio Pochettino, intensely ambitious, must think anything is possible with this squad after signing a long-term contract and I think It’s only a matter of time before Spurs win the league.
At home to City on Sunday, they have to be the value bet at 11/5 with three firms. Spurs are quite irresistible when they find their rhythm and too many people have forgotten they looked easily the best team in the second half of last season, even if they blew up towards the end as Leicester refused to buckle.
Leicester v Southampton looks a low-scoring draw to me. In Israel on Thursday the Saints showed that they are not quite ready to rotate the squad to keep everything going on all fronts and they will be happy enough to welcome back Jose Fonte and Cedric Soares. Last year was a dream for the Foxes and they will not be winning the title again but their European adventure is working out well and one can only admire their spirit. It may come down to who gets the better chances, Jamie Vardy or Charlie Austin. Maybe one apiece.
TOTTENHAM 25 units at 11/5 to beat Manchester City
BRENTFORD 15 units at 11/10 to beat Wigan
Leicester v Southampton 10 units THE DRAW at 27/11 – if you can believe a price like that.