The Numbers Game

  • By: Matt Briggs
  • Last Updated: September 21 2012, 14:14 BST

Both the Value Bet and Banker were sunk last weekend as Sunderland and Chelsea both disappointed, but MattPBriggs found some solace lower down the league ladder with wins for Burton (19/10) and Chesterfield (evens).

Leeds: Were hammered 7-3 by Forest last season

This week Nottingham Forest (21/10) and Bristol City (12/5) provide the value to win at Leeds and Watford respectively and I also fancy wins for Cheltenham (21/10), Exeter (9/4), Bradford (21/10), Wycombe (9/10) and Ipswich (11/10). My Banker is both teams to score in the Crystal Palace v Cardiff clash.


Nottingham Forest to beat Leeds at 2/1 and Bristol City to beat Watford at 12/5

Sean O'Driscoll has turned around Forest's fortunes this season and they remain unbeaten in the league. They managed a 1-1 draw at Crystal Palace in midweek despite playing the last half-hour with 10 men and they look well worth an interest to take the points at Elland Road. Forest smashed the Whites 7-3 in West Yorkshire last season and although a repeat of that scoreline is unlikely, the hosts have conceded three goals in their last two home games.

I quite fancy another away win in the Championship and Bristol City look a decent price to win at out-of-form Watford. Sam Baldock has increased Bristol City's options up front and Derek McInnes has got together a talented squad at Ashton Gate.


Bet365 have seen money for Man Utd, Everton, West Brom, West Ham and Fulham with the Red Devils currently the best backed side in the top flight. Charlton have also been supported at Ipswich, as well as Brighton at Millwall.

Bodog say Aston Villa have been backed at 12/5 to win at Southampton and heap more pressure on Nigel Adkins. If that does happen expect Adkins' first Premier manager to leave his post price of 9/4 to be gobbled up sharpish. Significantly the firm are laying Man Utd (13/8 from 15/8) to win Sunday's blockbuster at Anfield.

Paddy Power have seen sustained support for Everton on the back of their impressive performance at home to Newcastle on Monday night. Arsenal are also proving popular and have just been trimmed from 4/1. In Scotland, Dundee United have shortened up from an opening show of 11/10 to a touch of odds on, and Rangers are as popular as ever in the handicap market.

Sky Bet say Derby have been heavily punted from 5/4 to 11/10 beat Burnley at Pride Park on Saturday. The Clarets have yet to pick up a point on the road and following Derby's win over Charlton in midweek the gamble is understandable. Everton got heavily backed on Monday to beat Newcastle, and the lack of confidence in the Geordies continues this weekend as money is coming for Norwich to win at St James' Park. Norwich are into 7/2 from 5/1 to grab a crucial away victory.


Manchester Utd (9/5) won their last three and visit Liverpool (15/8) (Sun).
Brighton (13/8) won their last four in Championship and travel to Millwall (15/8).
Hull (3/1) won their last three Championship games and travel to Leicester (21/20) (Sun).
Leyton Orient (5/2) won last three in League One and travel to Crewe (13/10).
Gillingham (11/5) won last three in League Two and travel to Port Vale (7/5).
Port Vale (7/5) won last three in League Two and host Gillingham (11/5).
Burton (3/1) won last three in League Two and travel to Torquay (11/1).


Southampton (6/4) lost all four Prem games and host Aston Villa (11/5).
Peterborough (23/10) lost last six in Championship and host Wolves (5/4).
Charlton (3/1) lost last three in Championship and travel to Ipswich (21/20).
Watford (7/5) lost last three in Championship and host Bristol City (12/5).
Sheff Weds (13/8) lost last three in Championship and host Bolton (15/8).
Barnet (4/1) lost last five in League Two and host Rotherham (4/5).
Coventry (6/5) lost last four in league One and host Carlisle (11/4).
Yeovil (12/5) lost last three in League One and host Sheff Utd (13/10).
Oxford (7/5) lost last four in League Two and host Bradford (85/40).
Wimbledon (3/1) lost last three in League Two and travel to Wycombe (21/20).


Bet365: We're currently 12/5 about Bristol City winning at Watford, which to me looks a bit of value. Tranmere (14/5) sit top of League One and maybe we're not giving them the respect they deserve at Crawley because there are plenty of people who fancy the visitors.

I'm giving one last chance to Dagenham (3/1) in League Two (I'm sure I said that last week). They are yet to win and facing a Rochdale side on their own patch, who will be buoyed by their victory at big-spending Rotherham last week. It may not get you jumping out of your chair to back John Still's side, but they're better than their league position suggests - honest!

Bodog: Odds-on Man City are the lay of the weekend for us as in-form Arsenal visit the Etihad. Despite the fact that City scored two in the Bernabeu in midweek they were totally outplayed and are yet to really hit their straps this season. The Gunners are in flying form and look like just the side to expose them.

We also want to lay West Ham who are a shade of odds-against at home to Sunderland. The Black Cats look to bet set up ideally away from home by Martin O'Neill. They were good enough to hold Arsenal to a scoreless draw on their last visit to the capital and that augurs well for Saturday.

Sky Bet: Tottenham have to be a lay this Sunday at home to Queens Park Rangers. Spurs have just had a tough Europa League encounter and their home form has been poor of late so the 4/9 looks far to skinny on AVB's men.

Rotherham are 8/11 to win at strugglers Barnet and this looks too short to be trusting the away side. Rotherham were poor in midweek and have yet to set the division alight so you would have to be brave to take the odds on quote for them to come out on top here.

Paddy Power: A huge weekend of football in the Premier League, but the best bet may lie outside of 'The Promised Land'. Side with Blackburn in the Friday night clash against an out-of-sorts Middlesbrough side that took a hammering away to Blackpool in midweek.

In the 'Super Sunday' clashes I couldn't put anyone off Man United going to Liverpool and delivering three points, whilst Arsenal are bound to cause a deflated Man City more than a few problems. In Scotland, Livingston are a big price away to Dunfermline.


Liverpool (15/8) have won four of last five in all competitions at home to Man Utd (9/5) (Sun).
Swansea (21/10) have never beaten Everton (6/4) in 15 meetings (12.45pm).
Chelsea (2/5) have won eight of last 10 games v Stoke (19/2).
Reading (19/5) have lost just one of last 10 meetings v West Brom (5/6).
Wigan (6/4) have won none of last 11 Premier League games v Fulham (9/4).
Birmingham (8/13) won four of last five at home v Barnsley (6/1).
Wolves (5/4) have won three of their four trips to Peterborough (23/10).
Leyton Orient (5/2) won last three trips to Crewe (13/10).


Crystal Palace v Cardiff - both teams to score at 10/11

All three of Crystal Palace's home games have seen both teams hit the net, while their high-flying visitors have scored in all but one of their opening six Championship games.


Scunthorpe's Leon Clarke has three in three and is 6/4 to score v Colchester.
Oldham's Matt Derbyshire has two in two and is 2/1 to score at Brentford.
Tranmere's Jake Cassidy has two in two and is 2/1 to score at Crawley.
Burton's Calvin Zola has three in two and is 13/5 to score at Torquay.
Exeter's Jamie Cureton has six in six and is 9/4 to score at Southend.


Cheltenham to win at York at 21/10

League newcomers York will be without influential central defender Clarke Carlisle, who picked up an ankle injury in Wednesday's defeat at Burton and he could be a big miss against Mark Yates' improving side.

Bradford to win at Oxford at 21/10

Oxford could be without striker Jon-Paul Pittman and midfielder Adam Chapman for Saturday's home clash with Bradford. Pittman was taken off 13 minutes into United's defeat to Cheltenham with a hamstring injury, while Chapman took a knock to his foot in the same game. Creative midfielder Jake Forster-Caskey is a doubt through illness.

Exeter to win at Southend at 9/4

Paul Smith and Mark Phillips are both struggling to make Southend's home clash against Exeter. Goalkeeper Smith was knocked unconscious early on during the club's 1-0 defeat at Gillingham on Tuesday night, while centre-back and captain Phillips was forced off at half-time nursing a groin injury. Striker Gavin Tomlin is also a doubt, Elliot Benyon is 50-50 and Neil Harris is already sidelined.


Wycombe to beat Wimbledon at 21/20

Speaking after the 3-2 midweek defeat at Exeter, Wycombe manager Gary Waddock said: "We switched off and probably lost concentration a couple of times during the course of the game which has cost us. In many ways we should have got something from the game. The performance was very good, we got ourselves into good positions. We have just got to keep going, it's as simple as that. Not feel sorry for ourselves, just keep going because at some stage it is going to turn."

Ipswich to beat Charlton at 11/10

After the midweek defeat at home to Wolves, Ipswich boss Paul Jewell said: "We're not just missing half-chances - they're gilt-edged opportunities. We were the better side but we were wasteful, just as we had been on Saturday (a 2-0 defeat at Middlesbrough). If we'd got the first goal, the confidence would have flowed. Instead, we're edgy and there's no easy way out of the situation we're in.That's life and that's football, but as manager I take full responsibility."