York value to bounce back
It's only a small card in League Two on Saturday with 13 out of 24 clubs still involved in the FA Cup but the section has nonetheless managed to throw up a couple of value bets good enough to grace any weekend preview.
The root cause of our contention with the bookmakers appears to be a fixture played last weekend, the losers of which we are now looking to support and the winners we are happy to oppose. The game in question was at the very bottom of the coupon where Torquay emerged triumphant over York.
At face value, you'd be inclined to think it was a one-sided affair in which the seasoned campaigners made light work of fragile newcomers but, reading between the lines, we're not convinced it was all that comprehensive. Neither are we buying into the notion that it was a defining moment in the season for both sides.
Allowances should be made for the fact that York boss Gary Mills was down in the dumps afterwards, bemoaning the dwindling confidence of his troops as they wasted several chances to seize the initiative, but we reckon he's being a tad harsh on himself and his players. He ought to be markedly more upbeat after a week to reflect.
The Minstermen might be winless in seven, a sequence that has seen them drop into the bottom eight, but they've been very competitive for most of the campaign and appear to be paying a heavy price for drawing eight out of ten matches against teams who currently reside in the top half.
However, we can use that knowledge to our advantage by keeping the stalemate onside ahead of their trip to Rochdale. When you look back on their efforts on the road at Port Vale, Cheltenham, Bradford and Exeter, it's easy to see value in the 6/4 available on York (draw no bet).
The case is only enhanced by the sense of stage fright that besieges the Lancashire outfit in front of their own fans, much to the annoyance of John Coleman. Dale have only won three out of 13 matches at Spotland this term (or nine out of 39 if you stretch the timeframe back to the beginning of last season) and their Scouse gaffer is convinced the problem is purely psychological.
So both teams have mental barriers to overcome, which means it's hardly likely to a classic, but pressure tends to weigh slightly less on the shoulders of the away side in such scenarios and the value is with the Minstermen at the prices.
A much better spectacle should be expected at Plainmoor where Torquay will be looking to put their renewed impetus to good use against a free-spirited Dagenham & Redbridge outfit but our position is much the same. The pre-match excitement is provided by the 13/8 draw-no-bet price available on the visitors.
John Still's men have been busy bloodying the nose of much bigger fish in recent weeks and they deserve a bit more respect on the back of their exploits against the likes of Oxford, Rotherham, Burton and Fleetwood in recent weeks. The Daggers have taken nine points from those last four matches, scoring 11 goals in the process.
Martin Ling is still talking Torquay up as a formidable proposition at home after an eight-match unbeaten start, conveniently forgetting that the Gulls were hammered 4-1 by Southend only last week, which was hardly the ideal response to being dumped out of the FA Cup by Harrogate in their previous home match.
We're not quite as bold on this bet as we are the headline tip, so we'll stake accordingly. But Daggers get the nod.
- @MatthewStanger Valencia's ground is actually just Mestalla (name of barrio) but everyone outside Spain calls it 'the' Mestalla. — 2 hours 52 min ago
- @MatthewStanger My understanding, 'the' if named after somebody/thing (ex player, sponsors, etc) not if named by location (OT, Anfield, etc) — 2 hours 54 min ago
- @Squawka But only after celebrity Spain fan Manolo got his hands on one: http://t.co/db3lVmRl6Q — 3 hours 4 min ago
- @JoeBrewinFFT Well worth it mate. Sooner the better. — 3 hours 18 min ago
- @MarneBlair Online, via Amazon. Available in the shops any day, I believe. — 3 hours 21 min ago