Bodø/Glimt v Ranheim
Bodø/Glimt have had such a great season but they got absolutely battered 6-0 by Vålerenga in the last round. Maybe it was a case of finally coming down to earth and it will be interesting to see how they respond here. In some ways I wasn’t too surprised they slipped up in that fixture. They were facing opponents who on their day can be absolutely brilliant, and that is exactly what occurred. Perhaps the big surprise was the failure of Glimt to score a goal. It was only the second time this season they failed to hit the back of the net, although they did have chances as per usual. This is a team that is very attack minded in its nature and they like to push forward whenever they can. The manager has kept a very consistent XI all season and I would be surprised if he makes any significant changes on the back of just one really bad result. Perhaps Philip Zinckernagel could be an option to bring into the side after some decent substitute appearances. Bodø/Glimt have a 5-1-1 home record this season and have been performing very well at Aspmyra Stadion.
Here they face a Ranheim side who have once again defied expectations and been very competitive in 2019. RIL haven’t done as well as last season but they do sit in 11th spot currently clear of the relegation zone. The visitors head into this game winless in four matches though, the most recent of which was a late defeat at home to Trondheim rivals Rosenborg (2-3). Ranheim actually have the sixth best away record in the league so far and have based their game more on defence than attack. It must be noted they have travelled to some very tough venues like Odd, Brann & Molde though where it made sense to shut up shop and keep things tight. On the face of things, a visit to Bodø/Glimt won’t be easy either. But facing a side that just conceded six goals could be the right sort of timing.
The hosts are -1 Asian Handicap favourites for this match and that certainly offers some temptation. Glimt have had a great season and for the most part have outplayed a number of teams this year. However, I am worried about their mindset after suffering such a big loss last week and I’m also concerned about their leaky defence of late. Bodø conceded three times at Viking recently in what was a wild 4-3 victory. They kept a clean sheet at home to Odd, but it wasn’t without major alarm. Ranheim have been involved in a lot of under 2.5 games away from home this season but I suspect they will come out and have more attacking intent here. The pick I like is over 2.75 goals. I see both teams scoring but Glimt are capable of covering this line on their own if they keep up their general standard of play this season.
Asian Total Goals Betting Recommendation: Over 2.75 goals at 1.960
Haugesund v Tromsø
Haugesund have had a fairly rough time of late. They are winless in four games and just lost their way a bit in many different ways. One of the big problems encountered has been losing key individuals, either due to injury or other reasons. Left back Alexander Stølås is ruled out for the rest of the season whilst striker Ibrahima Wadji remains suspended internally because of a drugs misuse incident. Haugesund have a problem in attack and have recently recalled loanee Ibrahim Shuaibu from Israel, although how soon he will be available I’m not sure. The loss of Stølås especially hits them hard because he was integral to all of their set pieces and also one of the heartbeats of the team. Haugesund are in the Europa League this season and played away in Northern Ireland on Thursday night, so this is a quick changeover for recovery.
This looks like a potentially tricky fixture for FKH because they are facing a Tromsø side that have won 4 of their last 5 games. Simo Vlakari’s men were under pressure after a really poor start to the campaign but surprised everyone by beating the likes of Rosenborg & Molde. Another surprise is the fact that Tromsø have kept 3 clean sheets in their last 4 games. This was a defence which looked extremely leaky yet somehow they managed to turn things around. The form of captain Simen Wangberg and fellow defender Antonsen has been crucial. Tromsø have been willing to graft more and adapt their tactics, proving there is more than one string to their bow. Perhaps one worry is that they’ve lost 4 out of 7 away games, including a 4-0 drubbing at Lillestrøm in their previous road trip.
As a general rule I don’t like backing away sides in any league but I personally see Tromsø +0.75 as good value on the Asian Handicap here. Of course, there is a risk they could put in a stinker of a performance like they did at LSK, but for the most part the northern outfit have been much improved recently. Haugesund will probably be tired from their midweek Europa League adventures. If not physically, then mentally all the travelling and arrangements will be less than ideal. I suspect this will be a low scoring game. Neither team has been hitting the back of the net very regularly of late and possess some defenders who are in decent form. I certainly think TIL can obtain at least a draw and wouldn’t be at all surprised if they sneaked a small 0-1 or 0-2 victory.
Asian Handicap Betting Recommendation: Tromsø +0.75 at 1.800
Preview by: @meatmansoccer.