Friday, October 22, 2021

EPL 2021/22 - Week 9

Chelsea v Norwich - Home

Crystal Palace v Newcastle - Home

Everton v Watford - Home

Leeds v Wolves - Home

Southampton v Burnley - Draw

Brighton v Man City - Away

Brentford v Leicester - Home

West Ham v Tottenham - Draw

Man Utd v Liverpool - Home


Man Utd are on an explatoratory phase at the moment and with positive results difficult to come by, the pressure is definitely on Solksjaer to turn things around asap. The press certainly exacerbates things but if history is to go by, I don't see Ole being fired any time soon unless the Red Devils stop winning at all. They have too much quality for their wretched form to continue for long. Arch-rivals Liverpool certainly would be more than happy to further the current turmoil at Old Trafford this Sunday. The Kops are in championship form at the moment, driven by a Mo Salah currently recognized as the current best player on the planet. His recent performances and goals have just been scintillating and he will be relishing exploring the defensive frailties of the hosts. But this is a local derby, a match between the fiercest rivals in English football and current form is not the major ingredient. It will be mostly a battle of wills and Man Utd will not be found wanting in this department. With McGuire back, the defence has gone and will get better. They have the firepower to trouble any defence and Liverpool has shown their defensive vulnerability in mid-week against Atletico Madrid. Liverpool will score but so will Man Utd. At current prices, I see value siding with the hosts as either a draw-no-bet or as an outright win.

Friday, October 15, 2021

EPL 2021/22 - Weel 8

Watford v Liverpool - Away

Aston Villa v Wolves - Home

Leicester v Man Utd - Away

Man City v Burnley - Home

Norwich v Brighton - Away

Southampton v Leeds - Away

Brentford v Chelsea - Draw

Everton v West Ham - Draw

Newcastle v Spurs - Home

Arsenal v Crystal Palace - Home


Coach Ranieri starts his spell as Watford manager this week-end and it will be interesting if the legendary Italian can make the Hornets a first-half table team. Players are typically pumped up in a coach's first match, trying to make good first impressions but Watford have their work cut out for them against mighty Liverpool. The Kops are actually in a better position than I thought they would be at this time. I still think they don't have the depth in squad as compared to the rest of the top teams but with the likes of Salah playing out of his skin at the moment, they can keep the momentum going. I suspect the Kops can edge this one.

The pressure is on for Solksjaer at Man Utd as a series of defeats have allowed the skeptics to start crying foul. All the goodwill coming out of the Ronaldo homecoming seems to have evaporated. Worse for the Red Devils, they are missing their defensive central pair of McGuire and Varane to injury. That said, I think they still have the quality to win this match against the Foxes. Ronaldo can always score and it is only a matter of time that the parts start clicking. Leicester are in a spot of bother of their own, lying in the bottom half of the table; I actually thought they would be vying for the top places at this time but they have definitely gone a step backwards from the past couple of years. I don't think Man Utd will lose this match, so might be worth going with a draw-no-bet with them or an outright win might signify more rewards for a riskier punt. 



Saturday, October 2, 2021

Arc de Triomphe 100th edition - Superstar fillies against Godolphin colts

 The 100th edition of the Arc runs on Sunday. The greatest race in the world. And the field this year is one of the best assembled in recent times. Despite the impending heavy ground, it promises to be one for the ages. Here is my lowdown of each runner in this fabulous race.

Torquator Tasso - best middle distance horse from Germany. He will out-run his odds of 320/1 but will probably finish in the middle of the pack.

Deep Bond - Surprise winner of the Prix Niel. Hasn't won a Group 1 yet. His only chance to spring a surprise is that he shoots in front and his stamina allows him to successfully withstand challenges on heavy ground. 

Broome - Does not have the class to win this.

Tarnawa - Should be the deserved favourite to win this. Ticks on all boxes; form, distance, going, course, jockey. Will be at the finish.

Love - withdrawn.

Raabihah - Her outside post has complicated her already difficult task. Her trainer thinks she has no chance with that post. She will have to replicate her finish in last year's edition to have any chance. Hard to see her do it though.

Chrono Genesis - the best middle-distance horse from Japan. Has the class to win this but needs to overcome any Japanese curse prevailing in that race. If she's in her element on the heavy going, she can win this.

Mojo Star - looks destined for placings at best in top races. Can't see him winning this.

Baby Rider - not good enough for this.

Adayar - top-class Derby winner who also destroyed Mishriff and Love in the King George. Outside post might scupper his chances but looks set to be at the finish.

Hurricane Lane - other top-class colt from Godolphin. Will need to overcome the St Leger curse to win this. Should be able to perform on the ground but I fear he will run out of stamina in the heavy mud after his St Leger outing.

Sealiway - Might be good against French colts but not in this company.

Alenquer - One of the few who will relish the heavy going. He is a level short for this type of company though.

Bubble Gift - like other French colts, need a lot of luck to figure properly in this.

Snowfall - dark horse of the race. If the Snowfall of the Oaks turns up, she will win this. If that of the Vermeille shows up, she won't even place. She will love the heavy going.


In the end, it will be the Godolphin colts against the superstar fillies Tarnawa, Chrono Genesis and Snowfall. With the deluge that looks set to hit Longchamp, I have to side with the fillies that will glide on the surface. Tarnawa or Snowfall, make both of them your picks. 

Friday, October 1, 2021

EPL 2021/22 - Week 7

 Man Utd v Everton - Draw

Burnley v Norwich - Home

Chelsea v Southampton - Home

Leeds v Watford - Home

Wolves v Newcastle - Draw

Brighton v Arsenal - Draw

Crystal Palace v Leicester - Draw

Tottenham v Aston Villa - Draw

West Ham v Brentford - Home

Liverpool v Man City - Home


I'm putting faith in 2 teams to finally win their first matches of the season this week-end. Burnley won't have a better chance to get their first by beating lowly Norwich and Leeds have enough in them to overcome visitors Watford.

Burnley almost snatched a first victory at Leicester last week. Sam Dyche's men seem unable to hold a favourable result and have had vicotry taken off their hands in a few occasions. It won't get any easier than against the Canaries. Burnley for the outright win.

Hard to believe that Leeds have yet to win their first match but truth be said that they haven't had an easy path so far having crossed swords with the likes of Liverpool, Man Utd, West Ham among others. Watford do not have a solid away form, having only won points at Norwich. Leeds were rather unlucky to lose to West Ham last week-end as they opened the scoring only to be downed by 2 second-half goals including the winner in stoppage time.  At current odds, it looks worthy to side with Biesla's men to finally get that first win of the campaign.