Bodø/Glimt v Viking
What a year it’s been for Bodø/Glimt! They continue to make remarkable progress in the Eliteserien and currently sit second in the table. They are four points behind Molde but have two games in hand, both of which will be played in the next 10 days. First, they face Viking at home and then travel to Kristiansund on Wednesday night. Should a maximum point haul be taken out of both contests then the team from northern Norway will be in the gold medal spot! Glimt have possessed many strengths this season but the biggest one is an ability to score goals. They’ve netted 36 times and no other team apart from Molde (with 39) can get anywhere near that mark. Yes, from a defensive point of view they have frailties like the 0-6 drubbing to Vålerenga proved. But with the attacking nature of this squad they will always carry a major threat.
Viking are located in midtable but have definitely drifted a bit in recent times. They are winless in 5 games and lost 4 of their last 7 fixtures. The Stavanger outfit have lost some of its early season ‘promotion bounce’ and I would suggest it’ll be grafting sort of second half to the campaign in which they need to secure their survival. Just like Glimt, this is a very important period for them as they play twice. Following this fixture is a midweek affair at home to Sarpsborg, which might be considered a more crucial game against a direct relegation rival. Viking have a tendency to rest and rotate players whenever the schedule gets hectic so I wouldn’t be totally surprised if the starting XI here was a little on the strange side. Glimt themselves could have issues with centre back duo Lode & Mode both doubtful because of injury. Meanwhile, striker Geir Herrem missed Monday’s game at SIF due to sickness. He should probably return here but might not start.
Bodø/Glimt are -1 Asian Handicap favourites which is fair enough. They have a 6-1-1 home record this season and to be brutally honest are in a different class to Viking at the moment. However, there is plenty of transfer talk surrounding a number of their players which could prove unsettling. Amor Layouni, Frederik Bjorkan & hot young starlet Håkon Evjen could be on their way out of the club before the end of August. Right now it doesn’t seem to be affecting their form in a negative way though. I think the best bet for this game is to take over 3. This goal line is quite high but Glimt are rarely involved in any low scoring affairs anymore. The scoreline when these two teams met back in June was a 3-4 thriller! Whilst something similar is a bit extravagant, the possibility of another end to end type match can certainly be expected. I’d say a Bodø/Glimt win something like 3-1 or 3-2 is a likely outcome.
Asian Total Goals Betting Recommendation: Over 3.00 goals at 1.800
Strømsgodset v Vålerenga
The Sunday evening match in the Eliteserien this week comes from Marienlyst Stadion where an under fire Strømsgodset host VIF. It has been a horrible campaign both on and off the field for the team from Drammen and there is a realistic possibility they could be relegated. The term ‘too good to go down’ is often used in football and at the start of the season it looked like on paper they had easily enough to keep afloat. However, just one victory since the opening round sees them rock bottom of the table. Clearly, the club is in crisis and the signs of overpanic are obvious to see. Their supposed answer to this alarming slide is to sign a bunch of players and just hope that things click. Godset have added five new guys already, all of whom made their debuts on Monday night at home to Bodø/Glimt (1-3). Perhaps the most interesting addition is striker Moses Mawa who was on fire for OBOS-Ligaen side KFUM Oslo, netting 12 goals in 18 games this season. Mawa just scored on his debut for Godset and could be worth keeping an eye on.
Vålerenga meanwhile, were very frustrating in their last match as they draw 1-1 at home to Kristiansund. It was a very flat performance from VIF for 75 mins before they equalised. Only then did Ronny Deila’s men wake up and look capable of scoring goals. ‘Enga are situated 5th in the table but do have a couple of games in hand. If they beat Godset this Sunday then they will hope to follow it up with another at Stabaek on Wednesday. It’s a big week for VIF and they need players like Finne, Shala & Dønnum to step up. A new striker has been signed, Mayron George from Danish club FC Midtjylland. Quite how soon he will be ready I’m not sure. Matthías Vilhjálmsson is the current starter upfront or just in behind. His record of 6 goals and 3 assists isn’t too bad this year and he did pop up with the crucial equaliser against Kristiansund last week.
This is a big match for both teams who need the points for different reasons. Godset certainly showed an improvement in their most recent match but are still far from convincing. I think it’s asking a lot for so many new players to suddenly gel together and magically ‘click’ midway through the season. A lot depends on which version of Vålerenga turns up. If it’s the one that hammered Glimt 6-0 and Haugesund 4-1 then an away win is extremely likely. But they can’t afford to be as flat this week otherwise SIF will have a chance. The visitors are -0.25 Asian Handicap favourites and they are definitely the team I’d side with if I had to. My preferred bet is to take over 2.75 goals though. A large number of overs have taken place at this stadium in 2019. In fact, the 3.6 goals per game average in SIF home matches exceeds any other team. The way things have been going of late all things are pointing towards a high scoring contest in which Vålerenga might just edge.
Asian Total Goals Betting Recommendation: Over 2.75 goals at 1.950
Preview by: @meatmansoccer.