Going for Goals
Turn the frustration of last minute equalisers into pure joy by indulging in the Both Teams To Score market. Gareth Walker offers us his advice when looking for the ideal games and gives out his best tips for this coming weekend's action...
It’s been quite a fortnight for the goal connoisseur. A 3-3 draw on Saturday afternoon at Reading, plus a 3-4 the previous Tuesday courtesy of the circus boys of Ashton Gate, while Sunday kicked-off with a fairly rare 2-3 at Goodison Park...Ah...no...my mistake, it says here that the game finished 2-2...I could have sworn there was a last-minute away winner…where’s my notes?
Anyway, there was definitely a lesser seen 5-4 to tick off the list on Wednesday night at the home of the ‘European Champions’, plus the sheer unbridled joy at the sighting of that rarest of beasts – the 5-7 - which put in a long overdue appearance the night before, back at the Madejski Stadium.
I would love to have been at that game, if only to chuckle at players failing to understand basic rules, such as needing your shirt if the game goes to extra-time, or that if you take a minute over a substitution in injury time, then the arbiter is highly likely to add on an extra sixty seconds to the game.
Of course, on our quest, a common-or-garden 1-1 draw is equally as exciting as all those fancy scorelines. We are simply looking to find matches in which both teams will score.
Certain clubs are far more use to us than others. If Sunderland’s 1-0 defeat at home to Middlesbrough on Tuesday slipped under your radar then you are readily forgiven. The Black Cats’ last six results now read 0-2, 1-0, 0-3, 1-1, 0-0 and 0-1, and the one game from that list when both sides got on the mark was the Tyne-Wear derby, where it was 11 against ten for an hour and yet still needed an 85th minute own-goal to cop.
In total, a paltry four Sunderland games from 11 this season have landed our bet, meaning the Martin O’Neill’s men meet the defensively organised yet powder-puff up front profile that is much loved by layers rather than the backers of Both Teams To Score.
Their weekend opponents Aston Villa, as magnificently highlighted by Paolo Di Canio, are in real relegation trouble this term.*
Paul Lambert will sort them out eventually, but years of mismanagement, including a year of Big ‘Eck’s unique brand of football, cannot be corrected overnight. They are not the most solid defensively but a lack of potency going forward, together with the general inability of both sides to create chances, means that we are going for Both Teams NOT To Score when they meet at the Stadium of Light.
Middlesbrough, on the other hand, are much more our cup of tea. There have been a couple of worrying signs in recent weeks that too much of Tony Mowbray’s defensive solidity is rubbing off on his young charges, but they remain a side who have scored in every single one of their last 15 matches, with nine out of the last 12 league games seeing both teams on target.
After Preston’s failure to score a fortnight ago, it was Derby County’s turn to be the sole team who failed to notch from the eight selected last week, costing Best of the Bets followers a tasty 9/1 winner. Not to worry though, as despite not including five Championship fixtures and 12 FA Cup ties on his Both Teams To Score Bonus Coupon this week, Fred has still left us a veritable banquet to tuck into.
Boro at Charlton is readily taken to start our accumulator, and then we simply have to include the side that have conceded double figures in the last seven days; Reading.
On Sunday, the Royals travel to play QPR, who have the ability to score a few themselves while also leaking at the back. Even without Rob Green in nets, it’s still well worthy of inclusion.
This Saturday they play Everton, who have been regular friends of this columnist for their love of giving the underdog a chance by conceding an early goal (see Wigan, QPR and Liverpool) or, if the game is looking particularly one-sided, by nodding off to sleep and letting in a consolation (see Aston Villa and Southampton). Including the game at Craven Cottage this Saturday in both suggested wagers looks a no-brainer.
The flames of my love affair with Bristol City, and more precisely their defensive training techniques honed at Billy Smart’s circus, have been flickering even higher in the last 24 hours after the shock and delight of seeing them still maintaining their place on Betfred’s bonus coupon. They visit Huddersfield on Saturday, for a game which has 5-7 written all over it.
*Mr Di Canio’s lawyers have asked us to specify that while he was pointing towards Aston Villa supporters then gesturing downwards at the County Ground turf he was in no way implying that the Premier League club would be getting relegated. He was, of course, merely suggesting that the support shown to Swindon on Tuesday evening was at a higher level than that of the visitors. Obviously.
Follow Gareth Walker's Both Teams To Score selections in his Going for Goals column every Thursday at Best of the Bets.
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