Stromsgodset v Tromso
SIF are now a clear third in the league after beating off rivals Viking 1-0 last week. In truth, it was a really disappointing game of football and both sides were really cautious. This is unusual for Godset but I’d imagine they return to their normal attacking style here. At Marienlyst Stadion they’ve won their last seven Tippeligaen matches, many of them by a comfortable margin. Something about this place seems to breed attacking football and Godset often play at a fast pace. One thing that will slightly hinder them here is the fact they played on Thursday night in the Europa League away in Denmark. Its possible Godset might be negatively affected both mentally and physically, who knows. The squad is in good condition with only attacker Tokmac Nguen a serious doubt. Centre back Marius Hoibraten has been out of action recently, but returned to the bench midweek so might be in contention to start here.
I have to say performance wise, Tromso are playing as well as I’ve seen them in the Tippeligaen for many years. It really does seem as if they used the summer break wisely because they’ve come back and looked great going forwards. Tromso are known for being quite a negative team but their approach seems to have changed in recent weeks. The likes of Olsen, Ingebrigtsen, Asen & Andersen have all been in great form. One of their usual strikers Sofiene Moussa was suspended last week against Haugesund but should return here. Centre back Simen Wangberg is another who will be coming back from a ban. The feeling around Tromso seems good right now and they are even enjoying life on their travels, which is very unusual. Unbeaten in three road games, TIL have won back to back away fixtures for the first time in god knows how long!
This should set up to be a good game of football. In total 6 out of 8 Godset home games have ended over 2.5 this season, and the few that didn’t both ended 2-0. Five of those aforementioned games contained at least four goals in them. It’s just the nature of matches at Marienlyst which promote attacking football and the atmosphere usually helps as well. The big question is exactly what sort of approach Tromso take here. Will it be their more recent change to a more offensive mindset, or will they revert back to being at team hard to break down and effectively park the bus? A lot of people will presume this is a banker Stromsgodset win, but I’m not so sure. Troms are playing well and have had a full week of rest compared to their opponents who travelled to Denmark in the Europa league. If a team is to win then I’d still suggest the hosts are more likely, but I wouldn’t be surprised if TIL got a result. My pick for the match is over 3 goals which looks acceptable around the 1.90 mark. The way both teams are playing right now, at very worst this bet should end up as a push.
Asian Handicap Betting Recommendation: Over 3 goals at 1.90
Sarpsborg v Lillestrom
The hosts fell to a 5-2 defeat at Rosenborg last week but the scoreline was extremely harsh on them. For a large part of that game Sarpsborg were extremely competitive and on another day might’ve pulled it back to 3-3. In the end, two goals in stoppage time disguised the closer nature of the match. Rosenborg had to score a couple of really good goals to win as well and they pushed the champions hard. After a poor start to the season Sarpsborg have really picked up form. Prior to the RBK game, they’d won 6 of their last 9 and played some decent stuff. Important midfielder Anders Tronsden is suspended for this match which is a blow, but the rest of the squad looks set to be in pretty decent condition. Sarpsborg are unbeaten at home since the opening day of the season and haven’t conceded a goal here for over 400 minutes!
LSK continued their slump last week by losing to Stabaek 2-1 at home. Since the summer break they’ve looked absolutely terrible and played some awful football, to an alarming standard. It’s incredible that in both games they arguably could’ve end up with draws, but that’s mostly been down to the level of opposition who have missed loads of chances. Nothing about LSK seems good at the moment. At the back, too many holes are appearing, they lack bite in midfield and creativity seems non existent at times. Lillestrom were dealt another blow this week by the news that key striker Fred Friday is leaving the club to AZ Alkmaar. This is no surprise, it was a question of ‘when not if’ he’d leave. But it still leaves a big hole for now and only adds to their woes. At times like this you need leadership, therefore it’s a blow that experienced centre back Frode Kippe is suspended. LSK have only won one away match this season and will have to significantly improve on recent showings if they are to add to that tally.
Based on what I’ve seen since the resumption of the league after its summer break, there can only be one winner here. Lillestrom have looked awfully sluggish and as if they’ve been on a month long piss-up somewhere in the Mediterranean! Nothing about them seems sharp right now and the overall mood around the camp is poor. Losing Fred Friday was expected, but it’s still a big blow. He’s a massive part of their attack and they lose a massive weapon with him departed. Even if Lillestrom were playing well, this would still be a tough game. Sarpsborg are in pretty good form, especially here at home. Right now, you have to fancy them to keep a clean sheet, so it will probably only take one goal for them to win the match. I’d say 1-0 or 2-0 are the most likely outcomes, maybe more if Lillestrom are as shocking once again. I am never usually a fan of the -0.75 handicap line too much, but in this instance I think taking it @ 1.98 looks a good bet. At very worst the hosts should win the game, and in all truth I expect them to claim a convincing victory.
Asian Handicap Betting Recommendation: Sarpsborg -0.75 at 1.98
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