From The Trading Floor (14)

From The Trading Floor

Join Jay and Dazn Bet’s trading team as they bring you the pick of this week’s sports bets in “From The Trading Floor”

Chelsea v Liverpool – Premier League – 19:45 – April 4

Following a 2-0 loss at home to Aston Villa, Chelsea decided to part ways with former Brighton boss Graham Potter on Sunday.

It was another disappointing performance in a very perplexing season for the London club, who once again failed to take advantage of the ample chances that they created.

Potter leaves with the club sitting in 11th place, having won just five of their last 20 Premier League matches, and with just 1 victory in their last 5 league games at Stamford Bridge.

I have no idea how they’ve managed to struggle so much in England’s top flight this season, especially given that they put on some incredible performances in the Champions League, including the 2-0 victory at home to Dortmund to set up next week’s quarter-final showdown with Real Madrid. Yet, a failure to string together a consistent run of form domestically is the main reason why the West London club currently find themselves outside of the top half of the Premier League table.

I’ve mentioned previously that Liverpool seem to keep Jekyll and Hyding their way through this campaign, and not much has changed since I last spoke about them. Their 7-0 victory at home to Manchester United at the start of March should have been the catalyst to springboard the remainder of the season, but they’ve failed to win any of their three games since then. A 4-1 loss to Man City at the weekend, compounded with their 6-2 aggregate defeat to Real Madrid in the Champions League, shows just how far they have fallen since narrowly missing out on the Premier League title on the final day of last season.

Both of these teams will enter, and leave, this fixture having won less than 50% of their matches in the Premier League this season, such has been the disappointing nature of their campaigns despite the wealth of talent at their disposal.

Chelsea will be hoping a change in management will lead to a change of fortunes, with first-team coach Bruno Saltor taking charge on an interim basis, however, Bruno was one of the coaches who Potter brought to Stamford Bridge following his appointment back in September. I can’t see how someone with no previous managerial experience will instantly galvanise the squad, especially considering the fact he’s spent a lot of time working closely with their previous manager, and their performance against Liverpool will likely emulate the previous six months as a result.

It feels like another encounter where the victors are likely to be the team who decides to turn up and perform on the evening. In my mind, the side that’s more likely to do this are the visitors. Liverpool have produced some rare glimpses of their quality this season and, should they play to their full potential on Tuesday, I feel they will have just about enough to leave London with all three points.

Traders’ Tip: Liverpool To Win @ 9/5. A £10 bet at these odds could return £28.

 

 

Rajasthan Royals v Punjab Kings – Indian Premier League – 15:00 – April 5

There’s been plenty to enjoy during the early stages of this year’s IPL. From Ruturaj Gaikwad falling 8 runs short of a century in the opening game, Mark Wood becoming the first English bowler since Dimitri Mascarenhas in 2012 to take five wickets in an IPL match, and the sheer ease in which RCB’s Virat Kohli and Faf du Plessis’s opening stand of 148 ploughed through the Mumbai’s 171/7. There’s always a great feeling when the IPL comes around and this year has started in much the same fashion.

Wednesday’s fixture sees the Rajasthan Royals take on the Punjab Kings with both teams entering on the back of victories in their first matches.

Rajasthan’s victory over the Sunrisers on Sunday was an all-round display of cricketing dominance. The only thing that they lost on the day was the toss, and, after being put in to bat, their top three batsmen, Jaiswai, Jos Buttler & Sanju Samson all managed to pick up half centuries as they posted 203/5.

Their defence began with a two wicket maiden from Trent Boult, and they continued to take wickets at regular intervals in restricting Hyderabad to a relatively low total of 131/8 to seal a convincing 72 run victory.

Punjab looked like they were also going to post a score north of 200 in their game against KKR, especially with a solid platform of 129/2 at the end of the 13th over, but they could only add an extra 62 over the final seven overs to post a highly competitive 191/5.

The Kings also started their defense strongly, restricting Kolkata to 35/3 after five overs of their reply, before allowing their opponents to find their way back in to the match. Andre Russell and Venkatesh Iyer almost steered the Knight Riders over the line, but they lost their wickets in the 15th and 16th, handing Punjab a seven run victory after rain halted the affair at the end of the 16th over. With Arshdeep Singh’s three wicket haul being the pick of their bowling figures.

Rajasthan might be entering this one as the favourites, but the two sides do look pretty evenly matched based on their respective opening games. Punjab might have been lacking that extra bit of quality in the bowling department against KKR, but they should be able to call on last season’s standout bowler, Kagiso Rabada, following the recent conclusion of South Africa’s series against the Netherlands. The Proteas’ fast bowler could make all the difference on Wednesday, should he play, and I’m willing to take Punjab claiming a second victory as a result.

Traders’ Tip: Punjab Kings To Win @ 21/20. A £10 bet at these odds could return £20.50.

 

 

Middlesbrough v Burnley – EFL Championship – 20:00 – April 7

Easter weekend begins with plenty of action from the Football League, and one game from the Championship that could prove to be historical is the encounter at the Riverside Stadium between third placed Middlesbrough and table toppers Burnley.

Boro will enter the weekend hoping to keep their narrow hopes of automatic promotion to the Premiership alive. They currently sit six points behind second placed Sheffield United, having also played a game more than the Blades, with just seven games of the season remaining.

Burnley enter the fixture 17 points clear of their opponents. Promotion is almost secured for the Clarets and, should Luton fail to beat Millwall earlier in the afternoon, they’ll be able to mathematically seal their place back in the top flight with a victory in Teeside.

Both of these equations suggest we could be in for a very entertaining encounter, and that’s further backed up by the attacking nature of both teams. Middlesbrough and Burnley are comfortably clear at the top of the Championship scoring charts this season having scored 74 and 71 goals respectively, Boro’s Chuba Akpom currently leads the top scorer chart with 25 goals under his belt, whilst Burnley midfielder Nathan Tella leads the way for his club with 17 goals.

Both teams may have failed to pick up victories over the past weekend, but there’s no real reason to believe that they won’t provide some form of fireworks on Friday night. I am expecting both teams to get on the scoresheet and, although this one does have the potential to go either way, I would love to see the day round off with a Burnley victory and a potential promotion party.

Traders’ Tip: Both Teams To Score & Burnley to Win @ 9/2. A £10 bet at these odds could return £55.

 

Celtic v Rangers – Scottish Premiership – 12:30 – April 8

Saturday afternoon will see one of the fiercest, and most anticipated, rivalries in world football take place, when Celtic and Rangers lock horns in the Old Firm Derby.

The two Glasgow clubs will be meeting for the 434th time and, true to their historical nature, they have pretty much split their encounters, with Rangers winning just five more matches than their city rivals over the course of history, such has been the almost inseparable nature of Scotland’s two most dominant football clubs.

Saturday’s fixture looks set to be no exception to that historical trend. Rangers might be nine points behind their opponents in the league, but the two teams are a country mile ahead of the rest of the field. Rangers have won 24 of their 30 top flight games this season, whilst Celtic have dropped points in just once since losing to St Mirren all the way back in September, that being a 2-2 draw against Rangers at Ibrox in January.

Celtic’s consistency this season explains why they’re odds-on to take all three points, but the form book always tends to go out of the window when the blue and green sides of Scotland’s second city clash.

I wouldn’t like to side with either team ahead of this encounter, but I am hoping to see another passionate showdown that’s filled with drama and excitement. Goals have been plentiful when the two sides have met in recent years, with 22 goals coming in their last seven meetings, and I am anticipating a few more when the two sides take to the field at lunchtime.

Traders’ Tip: Over 3.5 Goals @ 6/4. A £10 bet at these odds could return £25.

 

La Rochelle v Saracens – European Champions Cup – 16:30 – April 9

This weekend will see Rugby Union’s Champions Cup enter the quarter final stages, culminating in the fixture on Easter Sunday between La Rochelle and Saracens.

The hosts, who currently lie second in France’s Top 14, enter the fixture having disposed of Gloucester in the round of 16. The French club looked to be in serious danger of being eliminated from the competition but a late Teddy Thomas try ensured they were able to keep their hopes of retaining the trophy they won for the first time last season alive, by eventually holding on to a narrow 29-26 victory.

Saracens may have emerged from their tie in the previous round with a fifteen point victory over Ospreys, but the Premiership leaders had to dig deep in order to secure their spot in the last 8, fighting back from a 3-14 deficit after half an hour to eventually run out 35-20 winners. The ‘never say die’ nature of the North London club has been one of the reasons why they find themselves sitting at the top of the English Rugby pyramid, and they’ll be hoping they can maintain this ability when they travel to France’s western coast this weekend.

La Rochelle will be entering this one as pretty strong favourites. They are one of the leading teams in France, reigning European Champions, and one of the most difficult places to travel to, however, a lot of questions can be asked following their narrow escape against Gloucester, and they’ll have to raise their game if they want to overcome a much stronger looking Saracens squad.

I feel like the visitors have more than a fighting chance of reaching the semi-finals at the expense of La Rochelle, and I firmly believe that they can run the reigning champions close. Whether the French club will be able to raise their game at key moments for a second week running remains to be seen, but I certainly feel like Saracens have enough to at least keep themselves within a single score of their opposition.

Traders’ Tip: Saracens +7.5 @ 5/6. A £10 bet at these odds could return £18.33.

 

A £10 5-Fold on the above selections could return £1,446.96

 

*Odds correct at the time of publishing. Available to UK residents (excluding Northern Ireland) aged 18+ only. T&Cs apply. www.begambleaware.org

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