As you know, NBA is taking a break for the All-Star Weekend and will return on Tuesday. In the mean time, here are my favorite four Football League bets I’ve selected from my personal weekend list to bring you as tips!
Port Vale vs. Morecambe
Here we have a case of the away team’s form really forcing the odds up on the home team when they’re a much better bet to win the game than the odds show. Port Vale sit on top of the form table, whilst it would seem Morecambe have been performing fairly well also having picked up 10 points in the last 5 games. Two of those have come away from home against struggling York and mid-table at best Dagenham. Prior to that they’d won just 1 of their last 11 away. Having watched Morecambe this year on two occasions I don’t find them to be particularly attractive as a football team. They’re strong and intimidating and they’re good at pushing teams around the pitch. Given Port Vale’s nice balance of football players and a big back line that’s used to keeping clean sheets and controlling possession, it should really counteract Morecambe’s style. If Morecambe are turning their season around then it’s likely to continue at home and not here. Port Vale haven’t scored less than 3 goals in any home win this season, and regular score 3-5 goals in a victory, including the odd 6 goal haul against Rotherham. The strike force of Lee Hughes and Tom Pope have shared 9 goals in their 6 game run that has seen them top the form table, and given their tendency to keep a clean sheet with Morecambe struggling to scoring, I was surprised at the odds for this interesting little market. Port Vale have scored 10 unanswered goals in their last 3 home games. Of course, there’s no guarantee Port Vale will win this game, but I’d suggest it’s quite likely.
MK Dons vs. Barnsley
I’m not really bothered at the fact this is an FA Cup game. As much as all form can be thrown out the window in these situations, it’s still a fact that more often than not the team in the higher league will progress to the next round, and predominantly come the quarter-finals it’s the Premier League and Championship teams left more often than now. Given the way the draw has been lined up for this round, I can see few shocks. Leeds and Luton are the two capable of springing another surprise, but it looks like there’s a chance this round can pass without any shocks. That said, if MK Dons were to pull out a win, it’d be the home favourites doing so. The bookies an out of form MK Dons at 2.5 against an in-form Barnsley. The Dons have won just 2 of their last 10 have dropped from the brink of automatic promotion spots down to 12th on 44 points. Barnsley, despite being inside the relegation zone they are the form team in the Championship having won 6 and drawing 1 of their last 7. During this run it’s also been their away form that’s been the best, and MK Dons’ home form that has been the worst. 1 draw and 3 losses in their last 4 home games represents one of their worst home runs in a while, and Barnsley should find a way to score for a 10th away game in a row. Regardless of who may score first, Barnsley should hit the back and that provides a tough ask for the Dons as they face a newly found stinginess in the Barnsley defence. We don’t need a 90 minute win for this tip anyway, as even Barnsley taking the Dons back to Oakwell would suit me fine.
Woking vs. Newport County
Both sides come in to this game bang in form and both sides are partial to a goal fest or two. Form is picking back up for Newport after winning their last two games away, whilst Woking are having another little run and have won four straight at home. The fact they are both confident and in fine form should see them come out and attack each other, but it was always very unlikely that Woking would fear Newport, or Newport would go there for anything other than a win even though Woking did counter attack effectively in the previous game where they beat Newport 3-2, away from home. Both teams sit joint top of the average match goals table, both having an average of 3.6 goals per game through the first 30 games. Newport have notched 61 yet only have a +14 goal difference, whilst Woking have scored 48 and still have a -6 goal difference, so we know one team it likely to batter the other – on paper of course, which the game isn’t played on – but given the over whelming stats and the way these two set up the odds seem a fair piece of value. Given the way both teams set up to play, with a nice mix of counter attacking football and just quick build up play, both sides should be getting a LOT of shots at goal each in this game, and obviously that helps us out.
Corby Town vs. Chester City
We all know about Chester City. We all know who they are and the troubles they’ve been in during the last few years. However, after their dramatic fall from grace Chester are nearly ready to re-enter the Football League. After blitzing all the leagues in a row, they’re currently 13 points clear of the competition in the Blue Square North and look an obvious promotion having won 24 of their 28 games. Corby are at the opposite end and although they’re currently hanging on, they’ve been the whipping boys this season. They’ve conceded numbers from 3-6 on a regular basis and they’re very easy to break down if the right team comes along and attacks them from the start, which Chester definitely will. In terms of this bet there are a lot of things I like. Obviously, Corby concede goals as I’ve said and nobody would be surprised to see Chester put at least 3 past them. They’ve also tightened right up at the back which is nice to see, as they’ve gone from a team that often concede 2 and finds it hard to balance attack to a team that has conceded just 1 goal in 6 games. This obviously helps the bet too, and if Chester score yet another early goal as they do very often, it could be instant curtains in a game I expect Chester to romp. The tendency for an earlier goal coupled with the clean sheet run for Chester are one of my reasons, the other one being the interesting HT/FT stat. Despite only having played 14 home games, Chester have picked up maximum points 99% of the time this season and they’ve actually led at half time and full time in 8 of their 14 wins, and they’ve yet to drop a point when they lead at half time. This bet is as simple as they have far too much quality for this league, they could easily chuck this squad straight in to the leagues and they’d do fine, and they will beat Corby tomorrow. Just a couple of early goals as usual and we’ll be fine, although I can’t explain the price, which is very tempting indeed.
Race to 2 goals: Port Vale @ 1.80 with William Hill
Barnsley to qualify @ 2.10
Woking vs. Newport: Over 2.75 goals @ 1.80 with Bet Victor
Chester Half-Time/Full Time @ 1.90 with Paddy Power