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We have the Champions League tonight. Fun and games last night as Real Madrid continued their superb Champions League form. Sevilla scored first against Bayern. I do hope you layed Sevilla. Hibernians conceded first but won, and Hull City leading continued their pattern of not beating the top 12 away. Did you take a chance on Wolves 1-2 down with 10 mins to go? There was a profitable trade in the Sampdoria match. Samp scored first and Atalanta equalised. I did argue for laying Sampdoria if they scored first as they had trouble with that 2nd goal. The trade was a success if you cashed out. But Sampdoria did score that 2nd goal late on.
No Sergio Aguero today for Manchester City - a concern? Are Barcelona too short tonight given this match is deep into the Champions League? Will Monaco continue to score 2 goals? If so then a Rennes 1-0 or 2-0 would be layable.Celtic. Strong favourites but a dead rubber for them, but....last home match of the season in the League. Torino look to have 2/3 goals in them on form. And the Milan derby? Leave it alone or go with recent form and AC Milan?

UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

19:45 - Barcelona v Roma - 1.27 Barcelona

  • The first leg encounter sees Roma needing to score at least one away goal.
  • Barcelona are unbeaten this season domestically.
  • They have kept 7 clean sheets in their last 9 Champions League matches so are more defensively strong than usual.
  • Barcelona has not lost a home Champions League match since 18th September 2013!
  • All wins bar 2 draws in those matches. One draw was a 0-0 v Juventus.
  • Roma have been far less impressive this Champions League. A draw and 2 defeats away from home.
  • Only 1 win in 14 away matches in the Champions League for Roma was against Qarabag.
  • I cannot see Roma winning. They will struggle, on form, to score 2 goals so must be layed if scoring first. This Barcelona side have seen huge DRT profits consistently. The Barcelona clean sheet record may quash Roma hopes.

19:45 - Liverpool v Manchester City - 2.46 Man City

  • 4-3 Liverpool last head to head. Manchester City would take that today given the away goal rule.
  • Liverpool are unbeaten in 12 Champions League matches. The problem is their opponents are hardly of City's stature. Liverpool have played the likes of Porto, Spartak Moscow, and Maribor.
  • 3 consecutive clean sheet home matches for Liverpool, again against sub standard opponents.
  • 6 wins for Man City this Champions League campaign. You feel the losses v Shakhtar Donetsk and Basel recently had nothing of any import riding on them. They can safely be dismissed as far as form is concerned.
  • The most impressive bit of Champions League form for Man City was a home and away win v Napoli who are excellent in Italian Seria A.
  • I expect Man City to score at some point. When Liverpool beat them 4-3, it was 4-1 until the 84th minute. City have goals in them. Do note the absence of Aguero for Manchester City. Does that sway any decision making?

FRENCH LIGUE 1

17:45 - Rennes v Monaco - 2.26 Monaco

  • Monaco are unbeaten in the last 8 head to heads.

Rennes (6th)

  • 4 wins and 2 draws in the last 6 matches.
  • Scored 2 goals in 5 of their last 6 matches.
  • 3 clean sheets in 4 matches.
  • No 0-0.
  • 7 0-0's at halftime at home (50%).
  • All defeats v top 7 played at home so far.
  • 11 of 14 goals scored at home came 2nd half.

Monaco (2nd)

  • Unbeaten in 15 matches.
  • 6 wins and a draw in 7 matches.
  • 5 consecutive home wins.
  • Scored in their last 10.
  • Scored 2+ goals in each of their last 10 matches.
  • Not beaten a top 8 side away.
  • Did score 2 goals away v 3rd and 4th 2-2 and 3-2 loss.

Conclusions

  • Note both Monaco and Rennes struggle v top 7 sides (both are top 7 sides). I note Monaco's recent goalscoring record (2+) and the fact that they have scored 2 goals albeit without winning v 3rd and 4th.
  • I do expect Monaco to score, and maybe 2 goals , today. Rennes have lost to all top 7 but recently scored 2 goals in 5 of their last 6 matches.
  • I would hope Rennes take a 2-0 lead here and I would lay them if they did lead.
  • 7 0-0's at halftime at home for Rennes so 0-0 at halftime not unexpected.

SCOTTISH PREMIERSHIP

19:45 - Celtic v Dundee - 1.21 Celtic

  • Celtic have won the last 3 head to heads to nil.
  • Celtic are Champions.
  • This is the last home match of the season for Celtic so contextually they will be keen on giving a good performance despite not needing any points.
  • Dundee FC Are still threatened with relegation IF 11th and 12th win their last 2 matches and Dundee FC lose their remaining 2 matches.
  • Dundee have not beaten a top 7 side away this season, losing to all top 4 - the away loss v Celtic was 1-0.
  • Tough to call this one. Celtic have scored 2-3-0-3 goals in their last 4 matches. Faith in a team not needing points?

ITALIAN SERIA A

16:00 - Benevento v Hellas Verona - 1.91 Benevento

  • 1-0 Verona last head to head.

Benevento (20th)

  • 8 losses and a win last 9 matches.
  • Benevento are relegated (unless they win all remaining matches).
  • Win, Win, Loss, Win, Loss last 5 at home.
  • Conceded in their last 10 matches.
  • No 0-0.
  • 6 0-0's at halftime at home (43%).
  • Beat 18th at home.
  • Scored in all home matches v 14th and lower.
  • 12 of 14 goals scored at home came 2nd half.

Hellas Verona (19th)

  • Are in with a chance of avoiding relegation but must start winning.
  • 5 losses in 6 matches away. Verona did beat Fiorentina which was a huge shock.
  • No draw in 13 matches.
  • Conceded in their last 7 away.
  • 6 0-0's at halftime away (43%).
  • Win v 16th, draw v 17th, 0-0 v 18th away 1-2-2-2-0 scored v 14th and lower away.

Conclusions

  • The market is confident here that Benevento can continue their excellent recent home run of 3 wins in 5 matches. I am wary though. Verona have scored 1-2-2-2-0 v 14th and lower away from home so consistently score v the strugglers.
  • On that basis, I would suggest both teams scoring today. Looking at Benevento's 12 goals scored out of 14 in the 2nd half and we would lay Verona if verona lead at halftime.
  • We would lay any 0-0 at halftime at the beginning of the 2nd half knowing Benevento score 2nd half at home.
  • Both sides are in poor form. I would though back 3-2 and 2-3 here pre match and hope that we see Verona's 2 goals and we see Benevento put in another good home performance. these scorelines are for trading purposes.

17:30 - AC Milan v Inter Milan - 2.84 Inter Milan

  • 2-2, 2-2, 3-2 Inter Milan  in the last 3 head to heads.
  • A mouth watering Milanese Derby.

AC Milan (6th)

  • For me are the form Milanese side.
  • 8 wins and a draw in the 9 matches prior to their loss v Juventus last match.
  • 4 consecutive home wins.
  • Great DRT side last match 1-2 down to Chievo turned into a 3-2 win.
  • Scored in their last 11 matches.
  • Lost at home to 1st and 3rd without scoring. Beat 5th 2-1 at home. Lost 0-2 to 7th at home.

Inter Milan (4th)

  • 4 consecutive clean sheets sees 3 wins but 2 of those wins were v bottom 2 sides.
  • Inter went on a run of 8 without a win and that has ended - 3 of 4 wins since came at home.
  • Inter are unbeaten home and away v top 11. They have not played 5th, 6th and 7th away.

Conclusions

  • Strictly on recent form, I am with AC Milan today. I am not taken with Inter's recent winning form (v bottom 2 recently).
  • This is though a Milanese derby and tends to become a 'best on the day' affair.
  • What chance we back 2-2 pre match? Look at head to heads. Can we see another 2-2?
  • I would lay Inter Milan if Inter lead 0-1 or 0-2.

17:30 - Chievo v Sassuolo - 2.94 Sassuolo

  • 0-0 last head to head.

Chievo (15th)

  • Only 3 wins in 20 matches all came at home.
  • Only 4 clean sheets.
  • 2 consecutive 2-1 home wins.
  • Conceded in their last 13 and last 6 at home.
  • 6 0-0's at halftime at home (43%).
  • 2-1 wins at home v 14th and 17th, and 3-2 at home v 19th.
  • 2-2-2-0-1-2-2-3 goals scored at home v top 8th.

Sassuolo (16th)

  • 1-1, 1-2 win, 1-1 last 3 matches.
  • Conceded in their last 5 away.
  • 1-2 win v 13th, 0-1 win v 14th, 0-1 v 17th and 1-2 v 20th away.

Conclusions

  • Welcome to a match where the favourite is 2.94. Why is the market non-commital?
  • Simple. Look at the wins record for Chievo v 14th and lower at home. Oh, and by the way, look at the wins record for Sassuolo away v 13th and lower.
  • I do feel that Chievo will score today. Look that their consistent 2+ goals at home v the top 8.
  • What chance a 2-1/1-2 today as a trading angle?

17:30 - Torino v Crotone - 1.58 Torino

  • 1-1 and 2-2 last 2 head to heads.

Torino (10th)

  • 4 losses in 5 matches.
  • 3 wins and 2 consecutive defeats at home.
  • 3 consecutive 0-0's at halftime but 3-3-4 goals total at fulltime.
  • Only 1 0-0 at home.
  • 3 0-0's at halftime at home (21%).
  • All defeats bar one have come v top 8 teams.
  • 3-1-2-2-2-1-3-1 goals scored home and away v 16th and lower.
  • 2-3-0-2-2-1-3-2-3 goals scored at home v 9th and lower.
  • 62% of home goals scored 1st half.

Crotone (18th)

  • 4 losses in 5 matches.
  • Only 3 wins in 17 matches.
  • 3-3-1-2-2 goals conceded recently.
  • A win is crucial to help stave off relegation.
  • No 0-0 away.
  • 7 losses and a draw away v top 9 teams.
  • 9 of 12 goals scored away came 2nd half.

Conclusions

  • Do remember the time of the year. Crotone will have points on their minds but in conceding 3-3-1-2-2 goals recently v a Torino side scoring 2-3-0-2-2-1-3-2-3 goals at home v 9th and lower, you'd fear for Chievo today on form.
  • We are unlikely to see a trade as Crotone's opponents tend to score first in their away matches.
  • Lay Crotone if Crotone score first. you may even want to back Torino at enhanced odds. Torino have recently been strong 2nd half scorers so look perhaps at 2-1, 2-0, 3-0 correct scores if 0-0 at halftime.