As we enter May this week, we are now approaching the month that we see all the medals dished out, all the league positions determined, who will get relegated, who will earn European glory, which strikers will be the top scorers and so much more.
I am here to give you my expert football betting tips, based on my stats, logic and my gut football intuition. I seek the best value accumulators for the coming week of football, to give you the chance to maximise your earnings from a high risk high reward bet. Last week, we saw Barcelona crowned La Liga Champions, Manchester City continue to hold off Liverpool at the top of the Premier League, and Borussia Dortmund go into meltdown in the Revierderby which may have ended their title hopes.
In addition to the domestic leagues across the continent, we also look forward to the Champions League and Europa League semi-finals, which promise to be great spectacles. Bring on another absorbing week of football, and I now present to you my three accumulator specials!
It would only be sensible for my first bet to include the Champions League and Europa League semi-final first legs that will occur in midweek. Tottenham face Ajax in the battle of the underdogs, as Liverpool meet Barcelona in the heavyweight clash in other Champions League semi-final.
In the Europa League, Valencia and Frankfurt will do their best to prevent an all-English final, as they go against Arsenal and Chelsea respectively. For this bet, I will predict how the first legs will unfold, and combining all of my scenarios together you give you a great value accumulator bet!
Match One: Tottenham vs Ajax (Champions League)
It’s no overstatement to suggest that this is the biggest game in Tottenham Hotspurs history, as they are just 180 minutes away from reaching the most prestigious match in the calendar year. However, they are up against an Ajax side that will strike so much fear into Spurs, due to their wins against Juventus and Real Madrid away from home in the previous rounds.
I actually expect Ajax to overcome Spurs in two legs, due to the Tottenham’s key players being unavailable for this first leg. Harry Kane and Son Heung-min are both missing, and that means Spurs will have trouble getting crucial goals. Perhaps Ajax can add the new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium to their list of triumphant away grounds, that include the Allianz Stadium and the Santiago Bernabeu.
[geot country="US,CA" ][/geot] Match Bet: Ajax to win by a 1-goal margin at 7/2
Match Two: Barcelona vs Liverpool (Champions League)
Not a lot of interest into this one. Two sides that are gunning for a 6th European crown, the favourites to win the competition, some of the greatest players on the planet, Luis Suarez and Phillipe Coutinho face their old side – yeah, really not a lot of interest into this one.
If an English side is going to reach the final, I’d back Liverpool as they have been literally unstoppable in recent months, and their physicality may be too much for Barcelona, particularly at Anfield. I predict Liverpool to progress, but Barcelona do have Lionel Messi, so I do see them winning the home leg.
Let’s hope, from a neutral perspective, that he can bring another of his scintillating performances, so back that man to score in a Barcelona win.
[geot country="US,CA" ][/geot] Match Bet: Lionel Messi to score and win at 5/4
Match Three: Arsenal vs Valencia (Europa League)
With both sides coming into this fixture after the back of a few defeats (or in Arsenal’s case, three defeats), it’s hard to be confident backing either side. Unai Emery, facing his old team, will hope to manoeuvre Arsenal in the Europa League final which he has achieved three times with Sevilla, and something Arsene Wenger failed to do last season against Spanish opposition.
Valencia don’t concede too many goals, but in all honesty, they don’t have much of a goal threat either. I expect Arsenal to fight back from their recent disappointments, and get a win to nil.
[geot country="US,CA" ][/geot] Match Bet: Arsenal to win to nil at 9/4
Match Four: Eintracht Frankfurt vs Chelsea (Europa League)
German Cup holders Frankfurt have been on a memorable journey to get themselves in this semi-final, as they had to overcome an in-form Benfica and Inter Milan in previous rounds. Chelsea manager Mauricio Sarri has been under some stick throughout large parts of the season, but he is not far from reaching a 2nd final this season, as well as looking to cement a top four spot in the Premier League.
I am going to back Chelsea to get a draw in Germany – with top goal scorer Olivier Giroud to get in on the act. The odds of this are fairly generous, so it will boost the accumulator greatly.
[geot country="US,CA" ][/geot] Match Bet: Olivier Giroud to score and in a draw at 12/1
Bet Summary: For all of these four outcomes to materialise, you can back that at 426/1!
‘Half Time Lead for the Underdog’
Betting on the underdogs to win matches are usually long odds, and very easy on the eye for the tipster type of bettor. However, accurately selecting a few underdogs to correctly win each weekend is a mammoth task to do.
Therefore, for my next bet, I am have carefully looked throughout the top leagues in Europe to identify some teams who are capable of getting early goals in a game, and will win their first half of football. They don’t need to win the match for you to be successful, but just have to be leading at half time.
Here are my tips![geot exclude_country="US" ][/geot]
Match One: Wolves vs Fulham
Wolves have performed brilliantly this season, and they are now favourites to get the 7th spot in the league which could mean qualification for Europa League. They continuously get points from the big sides, but their downfall has been dropping points to the lesser sides, most notably getting beaten twice by bottom of the table Huddersfield. Fulham themselves have started to pick up a bit of form, winning their last three matches, so it wouldn’t be beyond them to take the lead in this fixture.
[geot country="US,CA" ][/geot] Match Bet: Fulham to be winning at half time at 10/3
Match Two: Werder Bremen vs Borussia Dortmund
I have backed Dortmund time and time again this season, and for the most part, they have not let me down. However, they spontaneously combusted last weekend when losing to Schalke at home 4-2, as well as getting two players sent off. Their form has dipped considerably since the turn of the year, and despite still being in the title race, I cannot see Bayern Munich squandering their league winners medal.
Werder Bremen themselves come into this match in bad form, but in front of their fans, against a weakened and wounded Dortmund, I fancy them to win the first half, at least.
[geot country="US,CA" ][/geot] Match Bet: Werder Bremen to be winning at half time at 11/5
Match Three: Real Madrid vs Villarreal
For the final match of this accumulator, I’ll head to Spain and see if Real Madrid can deliver us the goods again! So often they have been a coupon buster this season, but let’s hope that they produce another woeful performance when they face relegation battlers Villarreal.
It can’t get much worse for Real Madrid who lost to Rayo Vallecano this past week, as a turnaround for Real Madrid just doesn’t seem to be coming. Villarreal perhaps need a point or two to remain safe in La Liga, and I expect them to cause Real Madrid some problems. Let’s hope they take a half-time lead.
[geot country="US,CA" ][/geot] Match Bet: Villarreal to be winning at half time at 3/1
Bet Summary: For those three underdogs to lead at half time in their respective games, you can have odds of about 70/1.
‘PFA Player of the Year’
Virgil van Dijk of Liverpool won the Professional Footballers’ Association Player of the Year this past Sunday, and became the first defender to do so since John Terry won it back in 2005. Raheem Sterling of Manchester City won the Young Player of the Year.
It still remains to be seen which one of those players will win the Premier League medal for their respective clubs in May, but my final bet backs them both to have a say in their next Premier League match.
Match One: Newcastle vs Liverpool
Liverpool have won every match since their away draw at Goodison Park in early March, as they have been relentless in pursuing Manchester City for their first league title since 1990. Up next for Liverpool, is former manager Rafael Benitez, who will try to coach his Newcastle team to preventing them from going back to the Premier League summit.
Liverpool look unstoppable at the moment though, and largely thanks for their attacking prowess, and their defensive capabilities provided by Virgil van Dijk. It may be a cagey game, where a goal from a set-piece may decide it for the visitors. Can the big Dutchman step up?
[geot country="US,CA" ][/geot] Match Bet: Virgil van Dijk to score and win at 15/2
Match Two: Manchester City vs Leicester City
Current Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers lost out on a title to Manchester City as Liverpool manager back in 2014, and now he has the chance to win the title for Liverpool again. They play open and expansive football, and caused Arsenal havoc in their 3-0 demolishing of them.
However, playing Manchester City away from home with that style of football could be risky, and could play into the hosts hands. Raheem Sterling hasn’t scored in Manchester City’s three latest wins, but I’d back him to get a brace here in a victory for Manchester City.
[geot country="US,CA" ][/geot] Match Bet: Raheem Sterling to score a brace at 13/2
Bet Summary: For both of the league’s best players to make another impact this weekend, they are at 62/1.
I hope you enjoyed reading my tips, and all the best. Now, bring on the football![geot country="US,CA" ]
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