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The Champions League and English Championship dominate today. The Champions League sees a number of strong favourites. The English Championship is as tough to call as usual but there is enough about the research to suggest some trading angles. I will try and tweet at 19:45 as I think we may get some action today.

19:45 - Man City v Shakhtar - 1.21 Man City

  • Money City - my Gran could manage them. Pep Gladioli gets all the good gigs - Barcelona, Bayern, Man City. Hardly taxing the old grey matter. Buy the best, play them, win.
  • Group F after one match sees Shakhtar and Man City both with wins.
  • City at 1.48 odds, beat Feyenoord 0-4 away from home. They were grossly under-estimated by the market then.
  • Shakhtar pulled off quite a coup with a 2-1 home win v Napoli, keeping Napoli to just a penalty and leading 2-0.
  • City have conceded in their last 3 home Champions League matches but the away goal does not count as extra in the group stage.
  • 4-3-1-5 goals scored at home v the likes of Mgladbach, Barcelona, Celtic and Monaco.
  • The question is whether Shakhtar away can be as defensively solid as they were at home v a very good attacking side in Napoli?
  • Shakhtar have failed to score in their last 4 matches away in this competition and on that basis you fear for them today.
  • There are no strong pre match angles of course in a match where these 2 simply don't meet each other prior to today.

19:45 - Sevilla v NK Maribor - 1.17 Sevilla

  • Group E sees all teams drawing their opener.
  • Sevilla drew 2-2 away at a Liverpool who simply cannot keep that back door shut.They opened the scoring and ended the scoring.
  • NK Maribor lack experience of the Champions League. When they have played, and it as been v early round sides, they have tried to keep a clean sheet. 3 1-0 wins, in their last 5 Champions League matches attests to that.
  • 2-0-2-2-2 goals scored by Sevilla in their last 5 champions league matches. 2 goals is all that is required today really if NK cannot up their goalscoring rate beyond a single goal.
  • The market expects 3/4 goals minimum from Sevilla and a breakthrough before halftime. I am sure Sevilla would take a 2-0 or 2-1 today as long as they nick the 3 points.

19:45 - Dortmund v Real Madrid - 2.38 Real Madrid

  • Group H sees a win for Real Madrid and a loss for Dortmund. It is imperative therefore for Dortmund to win.
  • These 2 met in 2016 and the scorelines were 2-2. In both matches, Real Madrid led and were unable to hold on to the lead.
  • Looking at Real Madrid domestically and they seem more vulnerable than ever.
  • Marcelo, Kroos, and Benzema are 3 eyecatching sidelined players for Real Madrid.
  • Dortmund are worryingly poor in the Champions League. Losses v Benfica (Dortmund won 2nd leg), Monaco (twice) and Tottenham. The Tottenham loss was 3-1 and more emphatic than it should have been.
  • Only 3 defeats in the Champions League for Real Madrid since May 2015.
  • Dortmund look great in the German Bundesliga but worryingly weak in the Champions League.
  • I recall Real Madrid head to heads with Valencia which are reminiscent of the 2 2-2 scorelines between Dortmund and Real Madrid. I will take a chance and lay a Real Madrid 0-1, 0-2 or 1-2 lead today despite the concerns with Dortmund in recent Champions League match.

19:45 - Monaco v Porto - 2.18 Monaco

  • Monaco should be confident of getting out of Group G.
  • Monaco drew 1-1 away at Leipzig. Porto lost 1-3 at home to Besiktas.
  • Monaco have been great at home in the Champions League and beat the likes of Tottenham, Manchester City, and Dortmund.That was with Mbappe in the team.
  • In August last year Porto beat Roma away from home but that is not the norm.0-2-0-0 scored by Porto in their last 4 away matches.
  • I would expect Monaco to make home advantage count today and I will be with them today even if Porto score first.

19:45 - Spartak Moscow v Liverpool - 1.68 Liverpool

  • All draws so far in Group E.
  • Spartak were last in the Champions League in 2012. They drew 1-1 away at Maribor.
  • Liverpool have scored and conceded in their 3 Champions League matches this term.
  • 1-2, 4-2 and 2-2 for Liverpool v Hoffenheim and Sevilla.
  • Spartak should be outplayed today. I do think Liverpool can score 2+ goals today and not lose. A simple angle.

19:45 - APOEL v Tottenham - 1.29 Tottenham

  • APOEL should be the whipping boys in Group H. With Real Madrid and Dortmund making up the rest of Group H, this is a must win for Tottenham.
  • 1-0-1 goals scored by Tottenham away in the Champions League.
  • APOEL will look to frustrate Tottenham this evening. Do watch out for that but keep the faith that Tottenham will score. Tottenham must win. It is such a tough group.

19:45 - Besiktas v RB Leipzig - 2.32 RB

  • Besiktas are the only team in Group G to win a match.
  • Leipzig are new to the Champions League. A 1-1 draw v Monaco.
  • Besiktas beat Porto 1-3.
  • 3-1-3-0-3 goals scored by Besiktas in recent Champions League matches.
  • Besiktas may surprise with their goal scoring this evening. I have no firm angles given Leipzig are a real unknown in the Champions League.

19:45 - Napoli v Feyenoord - 1.17 Napoli

  • Feyenoord have tended to look out of their depth in the Champions League. 0-4 City win last match. Feyenoord have lost all Champions League matches 2012 and 2014.
  • Napoli are worried now. They lost to Shakhtar in their opener and quite simply must win. Napoli have a chance in Group F. Man City will finish top but Shakhtar and Feyenoord should be get-able.

ENGLISH CHAMPIONSHIP

This is one of the most competitive leagues out there. It is not a league I tend to dwell upon but serves up good trades via the in-play stats. I will take a look at today's matches, working firstly with the matches with obvious favourites.

19:45 - Barnsley v QPR - 2.72 both sides

  • 3-2 Barnsley, 2-1 QPR in the last 2 head to heads.
  • When you see 2.72 odds for both sides, it is obvious that the market simply has no clue as to the likely outcome of this match.
  • There are a few notable patterns for both sides.

Barnsley

  • Barnsley have kept only 1 clean sheet.
  • Barnsley's only 0-0 at halftime came last match.
  • Barnsley's 4 home matches so far have seen exactly 3 goals in total.
  • No 0-0 at halftime at home for Barnsley.

QPR

  • Only 3 defeats so far all came away from home and all in the last 3 away matches
  • In 7 of 10 matches this season, at least one team scored at least 2 goals in a match.
  • QPR ended a run of 5 consecutive both teams to score match with a 0-0.
  • That ended a run of no 0-0 at halftime in all matches.
  • QPR are yet to meet the current bottom 10 sides, of which Barnsley are one.

Conclusions

  • Note the market cannot split the teams. With Barnsley keeping only 1 clean sheet, I would take a chance and lay any second half 0-0. Yes QPR 0-0 last match but prior to that they were scoring, or conceding, 2 goals with regularity.
  • Not sure about laying the 0-0 in the halftime score market. Barnsley yet to see one, albeit in 4 matches only. QPR ended a 100% record without 0-0 at halftime with a 0-0 fulltime last match.
  • If 0-0 at halftime, you might want to back over 2.5 goals 2nd half or 2-1/1-2 just incase Barnsley serve up another 3 goal home match.
  • But I end on another note of caution. 2.72 both teams tells us this is absolutely wide open as far as the market is concerned. The market sees it as an unreadable match.

19:45 - Brentford v Derby - 2.36 Brentford

  • 0-0 and 4-0 Brentford in the last 2 head to heads.
  • Another non-committal market in one of the tightest leagues in Europe.

Brentford

  • Only 1 win was last match away at Bolton.
  • Both teams have scored in 3 of 4 home matches without Brentford winning.

Derby

  • Scored and conceded in 4 of their last 5 matches.
  • Failed to score only once.
  • Scored and conceded in all away matches.
  • Are unbeaten in the 4 home and away matches v teams 17th and lower (Brentford are currently 20th).
  • 4 of 5 goals scored away came in the first 30 minutes.

Conclusions

  • We see good both teams to score patterns for both sides after these initial 8/9 matches.
  • Lay the 0-0 in the halftime score market, based on Derby's scoring of 4 away goals in the first 30 mins of away matches.
  • With the hope for both teams to score, lay any late leader 1-0/0-1 in this match.
  • Both teams to score obviously tells us that a 0-0 at halftime should end 2nd half.
  • Slightly favour Derby today. Brentford's only win came last match.

19:45 - Bristol City v Bolton - 1.51 Bristol City

  • No head to head after March 2016.
  • No win yet from Bolton who have lost all bar 2 matches.
  • Bolton have failed to score in 6 of their last 7 matches.
  • They have kept only the one clean sheet.
  • Only 1 loss for Bristol City, but 5 draws in their last 7 matches.
  • Bristol City have failed to score only twice.
  • Both teams have scored in Bristol City's 3 matches v 20th and lower. Bolton are bottom of the league.
  • This match should be straightforward for Bristol City who should not lose. They do score and concede v bottom sides but Bolton are having trouble even scoring a goal. 0-0 seems to be the only way for Bolton to get a point today.

19:45 - Burton v Aston Villa - 2 Aston Villa

  • 2-1 Villa and 1-1 in the last 2 head to heads.
  • Burton have conceded first in 14/18 home matches.
  • There have been -2.5 goals in 7/9 Aston Villa away matches against bottom-six teams.

Burton

  • Only 1 loss in 6 matches.
  • Only 2 clean sheets were 0-0 last 2 away matches.
  • Both teams have scored in the last 3 home matches where Burton won 2 and drew one match.
  • 1-1-5-0-1-0 goals conceded. An errant 5 goals scored by Leeds broke what was a good defensive display from Burton
  • Burton have not conceded 2 goals in a match at home.

Aston Villa

  • No defeat in 6 matches.
  • 3 clean sheets in 4 matches.
  • Only 1 away win came last match.
  • 100% over 1.5 goals away.
  • 4 goals conceded directly after halftime away.

Conclusions

  • Both sides are in reasonable form if looking at their last 6 matches. Burton are in a scoring and conceding pattern at home at the moment. Villa are tightening up defensively with 3 clean sheets in 4 matches.
  • I would note if there is a 0-0 at halftime Villa tend to concede 2nd half and Burton's only clean sheets came away from home.
  • Other than that, recent form suggests 2 teams in good form.

19:45 - Cardiff v Leeds - 2.16 Cardiff

  • The away side has won 0-2 in the last 3 head to heads. That sequence is unlikely to continue.
  • Cardiff have scored first in 6/9 home matches against top-six teams while Leeds have lost the first half in 6/10 away matches against top-six teams.
  • Cardiff have won 10/15 home matches.
  • Both sides have 1 loss this season.

Cardiff

  • Both teams have scored in 5 of their last 6 matches.
  • Cardiff failed to score only once.
  • 3 wins and a draw at home.
  • No 0-0 at halftime at home.
  • No 0-0.

Leeds United

  • Only 1 loss came last away match, a 1-0.
  • 5 wins and a draw in their last 6 matches.
  • 6 clean sheets in their last 8 matches.
  • Scored 2+ goals in 5 of their last 6 matches.
  • Not played a top 11 side away.
  • No 0-0 away.
  • 5 goals scored away in the first half.

Conclusions

  • An interesting match featuring 2 sides with just one loss this season.
  • What stands out? No 0-0 for either side. So if 0-0 at halftime, you know what to do!
  • I would, though, lay the 0-0 in the halftime score given Leeds tend to score first half away from home.

19:45 - Hull v Preston - 2.32 Hull

  • Hull are newly relegated.
  • Bottom-half relegated teams have scored first in 55% of home matches against top-six teams since 2012-13.
  • There have been -2.5 goals in 5/7 Preston away matches against relegated teams.

Hull

  • Only 2 wins were emphatic 4 goal wins.
  • Only 1 clean sheet.
  • Failed to score in only one match.
  • No 0-0 at halftime.
  • 2 consecutive 1-1 draws.
  • 4-2-4-1 scored at home in 2 wins, a 2-3 loss and a 1-1 draw.
  • 100% over 1.5 goals.

Preston

  • Only 1 loss.
  • 6 clean sheets in 9 matches.
  • 3 0-0's at halftime away.
  • No goal scored or conceded in the first 30 mins of matches.

Conclusions

  • Hull are struggling but at home scoring 4-2-4-1 goals so home is where it's at.
  • Preston are having a great season.
  • Hull have no 0-0 at halftime. Preston have not scored or conceded first 30 minutes. So if we get to the 31st minute 0-0, lay the 0-0 in the halftime score market. You'll get short odds.
  • Another match which should not end 0-0. 100% over 1.5 goals for Hull.

19:45 - Ipswich v Sunderland - 2.72 Ipswich

  • Ipswich have scored first in 8/12 home matches and they have won 5/9 home matches against relegated teams.
  • Bottom-six relegated teams have had +2.5 goals in 60% of away matches against top-half teams since 2012-13.

Ipswich

  • No draw.
  • 3 losses in their last 4 matches.
  • 3 wins and a loss to Fulham at home.
  • Failed to score only once.
  • 3-0-2-2-0-3 goals conceded recently. A worrying trend. Can Sunderland exploit it?
  • Sunderland are 3rd bottom. Ipswich have won 5 matches home and away v 16th and lower.
  • No 0-0.
  • 4 of 5 goals scored at home came 2nd half.

Sunderland

  • Only 1 win, a real surprise for a demoted side.
  • 5 losses in their last 6 matches.
  • No clean sheet.
  • Win, Draw, Loss, Draw away for Sunderland.
  • No 0-0 at halftime away.
  • No 0-0.

Conclusions

  • Lay any late 0-0. Neither side has had a 0-0 this season.
  • No clean sheet for Sunderland. Will that continue? Ipswich have failed to score only once.
  • Ipswich have conceded 3-0-2-2-0-3 goals recently. Sunderland have scored 1-3-1 goals away so may get on the scoresheet. Norwich though are beating the early season strugglers so should reply if conceding first.

19:45 - Middlesbrough v Norwich - 1.97 Boro

  • Top-six relegated teams have scored first in 61% of home matches against middle-third teams since 2012-13 while Norwich have lost 12/20 away matches.
  • Norwich have conceded first in 13/20 away matches.

Middlesbrough

  • Only 2 losses came away.
  • 3 wins and a 0-0 in their 4 home matches.
  • 5 clean sheets this season.
  • Only 1 0-0 at halftime at home.
  • All goals scored at home in the first hour.

Norwich

  • 4 consecutive clean sheets.
  • 1-0, 0-0, 1-0, 0-0 last 4 matches.
  • No 0-0 at halftime away.
  • Only 1 away win was a 0-1.

Conclusions

  • This looks tighter than the odds suggest.
  • An argument for backing 0-0 pre match. 5 clean sheets for Boro, 4 consecutive clean sheets for Norwich.

19:45 - Millwall v Reading - 2.14 Millwall

  • No recent head to head in the league.

Millwall

  • Only 3 defeats.
  • Only loss at home was a 3-4.
  • Scored first in all home matches.

Reading

  • Only 1 clean sheet.
  • 2 consecutive 1-1 draws.
  • 3 1-1 draws and a 0-2 win away v 14th and lower (Millwall are 16th).
  • No 0-0.
  • Not scored in the first half away.

Conclusions

  • Lay any 0-0 at halftime. Reading score, if they score, 2nd half away from home.
  • Millwall have scored first in all home matches.

19:45 - Nottm Forest v Fulham - 2.34 Fulham

  • 1-1 and 3-2 Fulham in the last 2 head to heads.
  • Nottm Forest have won 9/15 home matches and they have scored first in 7/11 home matches.
  • Fulham have conceded first in 6/11 away matches against middle-third teams.

Forest

  • No draw.
  • 5 losses in 7 matches.
  • Scored and conceded in 6 matches.
  • Failed to score in only one match.
  • 6 over 2.5 goals matches in 8.
  • Only 1 0-0 at halftime at home.
  • 4 goals scored at home came 2nd half.

Fulham

  • Only 2 defeats but 5 draws, 4 of which were 1-1.
  • Scored and conceded in their last 4 matches.
  • No opponent has led in a Fulham away match at halftime.

Conclusions

  • If Forest continue to avoid the draw, lay any late 0-0 (0-0 is a draw).
  • At any rate, with 6 over 2.5 goals matches in 8, Forest matches should not end 0-0.
  • Both teams could score today. I would tentatively back 2-1 and 1-2 correct scores from a trading angle. If both teams score and it is 1-1, then you can trade out of 2-1 and 1-2.