Weimann the way to go

  • By: Ben Coley
  • Last Updated: January 7 2013, 16:36 GMT

Valley Parade will be buzzing as Bradford welcome Aston Villa in the first leg of their Capital One Cup semi-final, and we could well have another upset on the cards.

Andreas Weimann can add to his haul
Andreas Weimann can add to his haul

The hosts have already knocked Wigan and Arsenal out of this competition and with their visitors having endured a torrid fortnight, this looks no tougher.

Of course, Paul Lambert's bunch are of greater ability and their come-from-behind win against Ipswich on Saturday will have provided a confidence boost of sorts, but it's nothing to get excited about in all honesty.

The Scot did make several changes for that tie and we can expect a stronger side to take to the field here, but until Villa start defending properly again it's a brave man who backs them at odds-on away from home, regardless of the opposition.

Instead, I'd much rather chance one of his returning stars Andreas Weimann further enhancing his reputation with a goal.

The Austrian took a while to find his feet at Villa Park but a brace against Man United triggered a run which has seen him score seven times in his last 10 appearances.

Significantly, he's found the net in four of his last six and when he's failed to, so have his team-mates. Increasingly, he's being relied upon by Villa and having been rested at the weekend - for a time at least - he's surely set to start this one.

That place on the bench against Ipswich turned out to be only temporary as he was called upon to help his beleaguered team-mates, and Weimann found the answers with a late winner. And as the attention now turns to this competition, so does his focus.

"Progress to a semi-final and, hopefully, on to the final at Wembley, makes the fans believe and it makes others sit up and take notice," he told reporters.

"We have been criticised because we're young but, for us, it's a great thing. There's a determination to go out and show that we're developing.

"We have a semi-final to get past before we can even think of Wembley and we still have to earn it. There's no better feeling than winning and the result at Norwich, and other ones, such as the Sunderland win, provide a boost."

Whenever a player is fancied to find the net there's temptation to back him to score first, and certainly that exists in this case with 6/1 a very reasonable price.

However, not only to Bradford pose a significant attacking threat - 8/11 about both teams scoring is very fair - but Weimann's likely partner Christian Benteke quite rightly takes out a chunk of the book too.

So instead of complicating things by trying to predict when he'll score, I'll instead suggest that the best bet is Weimann to score at any time with Sky Bet's 7/4 a very reasonable price.

As has been noted several times on these pages, it's also worth checking for Man Of The Match prices which at the time of writing are not available.

Weimann's form means he'll be involved in the build-up and should he find the net, there's every chance he'll be named the game's best player. Conversely, if Bradford keep a clean sheet - that's a 9/2 chance - then goalkeeper Matt Duke is likely to cop at a much bigger price.

  • Preview posted at 1645 GMT on 07/01/2013.