We could have given you this or the Belgium match, we chose this for popularity! ———West London meets East London in this derby match! It’s fair to say Chelsea have made heavy weather of playing on the road, but their is nothing wrong with what they have done at Stamford Bridge. In fact, the Blues lost just one game at home this season, and they won 4 from their last five has host. Beating Tottenham (2-0) is clearly a big one, and a look further down the line shows they also beat Manchester City (2-0) by the same scoreline. A recent 3-0 (Brighton), 3-0 Kiev, 3-0 Malmo and 5-0 Huddersfield is proof that it’s hard for opposing teams to score in this stadium. West Ham will be up for this match against an old rival, but will they be good enough. The fact is the Hammers are just 4-3-8 on the road, and they took just one point from their last six away games. Furthermore, they scored just one goal in those matches, and they have been looking very light up front! Chelsea have confirmed both Ampadu and Van Ginkel are still unavailable, but they haven’t played this season. Question marks over the availability of Pedro and Alonso are the only real question marks. The Hammers won’t have the always injured Andy Carroll, or Andriy Yarmolenko. Jack Wilshere, Carlos Sanchez and Winston Reid are the other players sidelined. Maurizio Sarri has been given a second chance to get Chelsea into the top four. And, with teams around them dropping points, they look realistic candidates for securing a Champions league spot. Confidence is usually high when the Blues are playing at home, and they will want to keep momentum and win this by a couple of goals!
This is the third and last one - don’t expect same service everyday —————In the first round of Charleston, we thought Anna Schmiedlova folded rather tamely. In fact, she took the first set from Mandy Minella, but then lost the next two. Even more concerning was her losing the last to a bagel (6-0), so she needs to bounce back here. Now for the positive, Schmiedlova won this tournament last year, and she clearly likes the deeper clay in Bogota. Their is absolutely no doubt she’s returning to her favoured surface, and last year she bounced back following a first round exit in Monterrey! Ysaline Bonaventura did well at Indian Wells, and she knows how to play clay. All the same, if the Slovakian delivers this should be straightforward!
As per promised - we are adding all WTA bets for general use today. The only thing is we are Viktorija Golubic is 59.1% on clay, that compares to an overall average of 61.8%. The Swiss girl was knocked out of this tournament at the first stage last year, and her clay stats on the year ended 9/8. In 2017 she was just 1/6 on clay, but in 2015 she won Gstaad. It’s probably fair to say her clay form is confusing, so it could be down to todays mindset. Aranxta Rus is 64.4% on clay, albeit she was a bit disappointing at the recent W25 Santa. On a positive note, the 28 year old has beaten players such has Kaia Kanepi and Mariano Duque-Marino, and 12 of her 24 finals have been on this surface. Sorana Cirstea ticks the clay box, but her form over the past two seasons is slightly concerning. To be fair she’s been meeting some decent players, but overall she looks beatable!
FREE PREMIUM TENNIS PICK - Today we are adding all three opening round tennis bets————The biggest challenge in Lugano is the weather. In many ways it’s crazy to play a outdoor tournament in Switzerland at this time of the year, but that’s the cards we have been dealt. On that note, weather.com is saying monday and tuesday will be dry with sun intervals . Temperature will be 6 to 19 degrees, so players will need to adapt to slower conditions. Head to heads 1-1, but none of those matches played on clay. Mona Barthel hasn’t been able to play much this season, but she did beat Julia Goerges, and Madison Keys at the recent Indian Wells.. No doubt Barthel is at her best on clay, and her last two WTA tournament wins came on this surface. In fact, one of them was at the higher graded tournament in Prague (2017), while the other was at the Swedish open. The 28 year old also made the quarters of this last year, and she only lost to tournament winner Elise Mertens in a final set tie breaker.
FREE PRIUM racing tip - have this one on us ———FOREST OF DEAN won his maiden easy enough, and the h’capper has left him on the same mark. However, he does give the impression he might be suited by further, and this easy track doesn’t play to strong stayers. RED OCTOBER won his race from the front, and Redcar does suit these type of tactics. With that said, he’s tended to race freely, and he might do that on his first race back. James Tate has his string in excellent form, so we want to get with his SAMEEM. The son on NEW APPROACH will be suited by the trip, and he gives the impression their is more to come!
We have five PREMIUM bets today - Here is one on us ——SHAUGHNESSY was given a break after disappointing in his last race. We expect Oliver Sherwood to have worked the magic in the meantime, and he looks really well h’capped for a potentially decent six year old. Heavy ground doesn’t deter, and first time cheekpieces could help him concentrate. To be frank, many of the rest look exposed, and that particularly applies to COTTONVALE.
PREMIUM BET --------- Basel are used to winning the Swiss Super league. In fact, between 2009 and 2017 the club collected the trophy for 8 seasons in succession. Suffice to say, last seasons second place and the same this time around isn’t good enough. We should mention one of the reasons for this demise is cashing in on players. The owners pocketed €16 million on player sales before the season began, and it was a similar figure before the 2017/18 campaign. In fact, the hosts have been balancing the books through sales for a while now, and that will need to change if they have ambitions of getting back on top! However, on a positive note the august appointment of manager Marcel Koller is having a positive impact. While it initially took the 58 year old a time to find his best team, he’s certainly got the formula for now. Basel haven’t been defeated since the beginning of december. And, since the second half of the season began, they have managed 6 wins + 2 draws from eight games. They have also made it to the semi final of the cup, so now it’s about grasping what they can and finding the best players for next season. Lugano drew the reverse match, but we can’t imagine them having much chance here! Take the Bebi to cover -1!
FREE PICK ————In the last round, Cincinnati (0-2) where absolutely terrible against Philadelphia Union. Prior to that the hosts had won back to back against New England Revolution and Portland Timbers (3-0), so a mixed start to the season! Sporting Kansas City finished top of last seasons Western Conference, but overall they could only end third. Nevertheless, the Wizards are a class outfit, and having the same coach for the best part of a decade (Peter Vermes) is clearly helping stability. The other thing that we like about the visitors is how they prepare for away games, albeit they did get crucified (5-0) in a recent CONCACAF by Mexican club Monterrey. Nevertheless, prior to that SKC had his Montreal Impact with a 7-1. They have also beaten Independente and Philadelphia Union. We expect to see a reaction from the visitors this evening. And, with them almost certainly getting knocked out of the CONCACAF, they should benefit in the MLS.
If Kalmar have nothing more to offer, they are going to be in for a very tough season. While the players of Magnus Pehrsson appeared to do well in pre season friendlies, they where made to look very ordinary (0-2) by last weeks opponent Sirius. We believe Stefan Billborn will get even more out of Hammarby, and drawing their first game in Elfsborg was a decent start to the campaign. The Bajen ended last season fourth, and only goal difference cost them a place in the Europa league. During last season the hosts went 10-1-4 at home, and with crowds of 25,000 plus it’s fair to say they are going to be well supported. We expect the hosts to deliver this season, so the only question is are you prepared to take these odds?
FREE TIP - Ankaragucu have a four point cushion over the relegation zone, and more shockingly it’s the same for Fenerbahce. It’s somewhat humiliating to see one of the most successful Turkish clubs perform so badly, and you have to wonder why the bookmakers are making the visitors such short odds. Reputation has nothing to do with statistics at this time of the season, and it’s a fact that the Yellow Canaries won just 1/13 road games. To be fair the visitors have won 2 from their last 3 league matches, and they also enjoyed an easy friendly win. However, none of them where road matches, and it’s worth noting Ankaragucu won the reverse match (1-3). Prior to the (3-1) defeat in Yeni Malayaspor, AG went on a spree of six games unbeaten. The january appointment of Mustafa Kaplan appears to have made a positive impact, and we can report the hosts have no player absentees. Take the host with double chance!
FREE TIP - We are warming up for the highly lucrative Scandinavian season with a FREE VEIKKAUSLIIGA pick. Lahti have been very radical during the winter break, because they have allowed coach Sami Ristilä to change the whole team. Yes that's right, the whole 22 squad players are new signings, and last seasons 28 have been shown the door. Lahti finished last season a fair way behind third placed KuPS, but they did beat them at home. From what we have seen of them in cup games, they appear to be getting it together. This club have a decent record at home, and it's not has though KuPS have left a big impression during the same period of last weeks opening (2-2) draw with RoPS. We could go into great detail on what we plan on doing with this game, but looking at our bounce rate we won't believe people site visitors are overly interested in anything other than the tip!
FREE PICK - We bet a lot of China Super league matches ‘’in-play’, and it’s the same for Australia and Japan. The interesting thing is limits are much higher when the game starts, and that’s something we never understood. Afterall, bookmakers can hardly use ‘’dynamic odds’’, and their is not such a thing has a perfect algorithm. In fact, we liken ‘’in-play’’ to getting to see the cards in poker, albeit the same is true for the bookies! We won’t mess around on a long preview. However, we believe SHANGHAI SHENUA should beat Beijing Renhe with a bit to spare. While last season both teams won the away fixture, it really shouldn’t be like that. Afterall, Shenua took 63.2% of total points at home, while Renhe managed just 40.5% of points at home. The other thing is the visitors are didn’t win any pre-season match, and they are 0-0-3 in the league. And, while they only conceded one goal in each game, the fact is Diop, Shi, Aluko or any other player have been able to score. The hosts bagged a first win of the season in the last round against Henan Jianye, and former Watford man Odion Ighalo got both goals. The Flower of Shanghai have a decent midfield, and their is no reason to think they will be contained here. Take the team of Quique Flores to bag another three points!