Everyone loves an underdog!
Perhaps, by May the memories of this (almost) first half of the 2015/16 season will have faded to such an extent, that nobody will be able to believe the outrageousness that has so far left fans and so called pundits shaking their heads in disbelief.
Of course the sharp Asian Handicap punters out there will be crossing their fingers that, the upsets keep coming all season long.
Thankfully the Jamie Vardy goal scoring wonder tour came to an end, as the former non-league striker was finally stopped from getting on the score sheet by Swansea, although he did have a couple of very good chances to extend his record to 12 consecutive games with a goal.
English Premier League
A few weeks ago we had a number of short priced favourites going down to ‘plucky’ underdogs, whom not only covered their Asian Handicap lines but, also actually claimed victory against their more vaunted opponents.
However, this past weekend must have been some sort of record breaker in terms of upsets, even in the Premier League. There were seven games last weekend that had odds on favourites in them and this translated into seven underdogs that started their games with at least a +0.75 handicap.
Of those seven odds on favourites, only Arsenal were able to justify their 1.28 price by winning 3-1 against Sunderland at the Emirates. Even that was only good for a half win on their -1.75 Asian Handicap line. Of the other six short prices fancies, three could only draw and three of them lost!
Chelsea priced at 1.40 to beat Bournemouth at Stamford Bridge, could not take any of their chances and paid the ultimate price when Glenn Murray scored against them in the 82nd minute. Bournemouth went in to the match with an Asian Handicap of +1.25 which, was priced as high as 1.97 at kick off.
The prices in Germany this weekend were much more even than those in England, however the one big upset was just about as big an upset as you are likely to see all season.
Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich travelled to Borussia Munchengladbach and although their hosts were on an excellent run of form of their own, the bookies had the Bavarians chalked up as 1.37 red hot favourites to extend their undefeated start to the 2015/16 season.
Sharp punters should have been all over the 8.15 underdogs, who were available at 1.88 on Gladbach with their +1.5 Asian Handicap. The Foals have been on fire since new manager Andre Schubert took over in September, winning nine and drawing four of their previous fourteen games before facing Bayern.
Frisky little Darmstadt, whom I have mentioned a few times before again came up with the goods as they won 1-0 at Eintracht Frankfurt, when priced up as 3.84 outsiders. The +0.5 Asian Handicap line was proved to be way off in this instance, just as Gladbach’s was against Munich.
Having said that Bayern’s defeat was as big a shock as you are likely to see, where they were priced at 1.37 to win, in Spain last weekend the all-conquering Barcelona failed to win when priced at just 1.25 to beat Valencia in Valencia!
The match finished 1-1, which is not as bad as Bayern’s loss but the result would have had favourite backers pulling their hair out in disbelief, that arguably both the two best teams in Europe could not manage a win between them.
New Valencia manager Gary Neville must have been very impressed with the result against the treble winners, who made a real mockery of their +2 Asian Handicap line that a few shrewd punters would have been backing at 1.95.
Continued the weekend’s trend of short priced favourites getting turned over, as Napoli lost 3-2 at Bologna when going off as 1.47 favourites. The underdogs had the benefit of at +1.25 Asian Handicap, but pro punters who got involved in the market quickly realised that line was not needed, as Bologna were 2-0 by half time!
Tiny newcomers Carpi claimed an unexpected point from their 0-0 home draw against Italian giants AC Milan. Carpi who have a home stadium with a maximum capacity of just 21,151 went into the match on a +0.5 Asian Handicap line and they dealt with everything that Milan could muster on the day.
Prices correct at the time of writing.
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