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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Gooners Numb3rs - ISA Midweek Spreadsheet

There is a midweek round of the Italian Serie A and the spreadsheet numb3rs are out now.

See the spreadsheet output now.

There are 4 home winners and 1 away winner predicted.
All of them at 100% or greater value.

I bet those prices don't last long.

Monday, February 25, 2008

So what's Wrong with Arsenal ?

I was asked a question in the forum today ... "What's wrong with Arsenal?"

What's wrong with Arsenal?
They're top of the table - by three points - and with 11 games to go have a good chance of winning their first title in four years ... will they take up the catch-cry of "winning it for Eduardo?"

What's wrong with Arsenal?
They're playing in a competitive league and they've scored in every Premier League game bar one .... a 0-0 draw with Portsmouth at Fratton Park. Is that really going wrong?

What's wrong with Arsenal?
After losing Thierry Henry in the summer to Barcelona - nearly every external pundit said that Arsenal were finished and would struggle to make the top four - picking Spurs to replace them. Is first place really a bad effort?

What's wrong with Arsenal?
After winning 4 league games in a row they drew 2-2 with Birmingham City despite dominating the game and conceding a last minute (non) penalty. It's a stumble but not fatal.

Ok ... so having made my point ...
Perhaps the only thing that I'd point to - and I point to it each season - is Arsene Wenger's tendancy to work with a smaller squad or players when compared to the other "big 4 clubs" in England and also a tendancy to favour youth over experience.

My gut feeling is that this means that Mr Wenger has to spend less time dealing with players moaning about not getting playing time. Younger players expect less time (compare the attitude of Jens Lehmann to Manual Almunia - or Gilberto to Flamini) and with a smaller squad then they will all get to play some part in a game during a week where there is mid-week and weeekend fixtures.

With Van Persie out for the last 5 months, and now Eduardo out for 6 months, Arsenal are lacking a core of striker - indeed until Adebayor struck amazing form I might have said had no recognized strikers.

A lack of experienced heads is also a key - and if William Gallas is our most responsible player - then we're always going to be likely to be in trouble when stress is applied. (again see Birmingham after the final whistle)

Arsenal has a small, young squad of extremely talented players, but (as I always complain on the blog) it is not a squad that is capable of challenging on four fronts for trophies.

Wenger has realised this this season and the Carling Cup and FA Cup sides were decidedly under-strength - but with 10 players out Arsenal do not now have enough quality options.

Of course, the problem for Wenger is that while that solves the too many games problem, it does not satisfy that fans who honestly would like to see Arsenal win every game that they play.

Remember that prior to Arsenal, Wenger's biggest previous club was Monaco, and with all respect to Monaco - their fans probably didn't care if they didn't bother to much about domestic cups.

Arsene Wenger is a great manager - but he needs to find a way to handle the man management issues (I'm available to lay down the law ) and overcome his aversion to building a big experienced squad.

If Arsenal want to be a true European power on a regular basis - then they need a squad that can handle an injury situation like this - because quite frankly given the nature of the domestic league - this situation is likely to occur EVERY season.

However, I think that Wenger knows that if he brings in experience ahead of youth - then he will undo a lot of the good work he's doing now.

So What's wrong with Arsenal?

Not much that 2-3 experienced players couldn't solve. But will Wenger ever go that way in the transfer market? I don't think so.

This year was not supposed to be Arsenal's year - it was too soon with all the young heads. But now after such a great opening 6 months I do wonder if Arsenal will somehow manage to do it - perhaps with Eduardo helping to concentrate thier efforts?

And as for next season ... just watch out.

The Premier League must act - ban thugs

Arsenal's Croatian / Brazilian striker Eduardo suffered a potentially career threatening injury on Saturday and it's time this sort of thuggery is sorted out.

Birmingham City's Martin Taylor clattered into Eduardo divingi in studs up and missing the ball by over a foot, and fractured his left fibula and an open dislocation of his ankle joint leaving Eduardo with a foot pointing the wrong way.

The apologists for the "get stuck in brigade" are already saying that it wasn't malicious, and that Taylor "is a good lad" but have no doubt at all that this tackle was a deliberate attempt to stop Eduardo and prevent a chance at goal.

Taylor probably did not mean to break a leg, or end a career, but he also did not mean to pull out of the tackle once the ball had gone.

This tackle wasn't mistimed, it was not accidental, it was a calculated tackle delivered with full force and designed to give the Arsenal player "something to think about" early on in the game, and it something that is still prevalent in the English game.

As it stands Taylor will be banned for three games for his red card, while Eduardo will be out of football for at least 6 months ... if he plays at professional level again.

I've gone into the forum saying that my solution would be that players that are sent off for violent fouls should be suspended for a periord of time that matches the duration that the injured player is out plus three months.

Perhaps that's too harsh, especially bearing in mind that Eduardo may not play again, but I certainly think that there needs to be a review panel that sits after the game to make a decision on an extended ban period for violent fouls.

Whether, it's 5, 10 or even 20 games is something that can be determined rationally in the week following with the benefit of video evidence and witness depositions.

As it stands at the moment a player that gets sent off gets a 3-match ban, be it for talking out of turn to a referee, slapping (Jeremie Aliadiere yesterday), or for violent foul play.

That's unacceptable.

(NEWS UPDATE : Arsenal are predicting that Eduardo da Silva will make a full recovery in about nine months)

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Marco Van Basten to coach Ajax

Dutch legend coach Marco van Basten will become the new Ajax coach next season.

The former AC Milan striker will manage Holland in Euro2008 before stepping down to take over at his former club on 1 July.

Van Basten, three times a winner of the European player of the year award, had been linked with Chelsea and Barcelona - but he has agreed a four-year deal with Ajax after good friend Johan Cruyff was charged with overseeing an overhaul of the ailing Amsterdam club.

Van Basten - a former Ajax youth coach - will be assisted by John van't Schip and Rob Witschge, who are also currently with the national side.

He will take over from Adrie Koster, who succeeded Henk ten Cate on a temporary basis after he joined Chelsea last October.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Bookmaker Survey

Ladies and Gentlemen, we've found a site that lets us take a quick survey of opinions - and we want to know what you think about the bookmakers that we cover.

There are four short questions that establish some data for us :
- who your favourite bookmakers are.
- who else you might use
- who you've tried and dropped
- any bookmaker that we should add into our reviews / odds quoting system.

I estimate that this will take about 2 minutes of your time to do - and I'd appreciate any/all answers that we get. And it's completely anonymous - and you don't need to share any personal details like emails etc.

Click Here to take survey

I'll then go through the survey and look to make site changes accordingly.

(Next month we'll look at something else - like what leagues you follow and which bets styles that you prefer to take)

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

ManYoo Still FA Cup Favourites

Manchester United are the 11/8 (2.38) favourites for the FA Cup even after being drawn against Portsmouth at Old Trafford in the only all-Premier League last eight tie.

Chelsea are at 2.75 to win the Cup after Avram Grant's men were paired with Liverpool's conquerors Barnsley in the quarter-finals.

Portsmouth were general 6/1 third favourites before the numbers came out but after being drawn away to one of the two big guns they've been pushed out to a general 14/1. (15.00) along with Middlesbrough as the biggest threats to Chelsea and Manchester United.

Boro have home tie against Cardiff. However, they'll still need to beat Sheffield United in a replay at the Riverside before they can pencil in a quarter-final with the Bluebirds.

West Brom were also cut after being drawn away to Bristol Rovers - the only League One side left in the tournament. The Baggies are as short as 12/1 with Sky Bet although Boylesports have them at 20s.

Cardiff are 51.00 with BetFred, while Canbet offer 151.00 on Barnsley, and Centrebet are 151.00 for Bristol Rovers.

Paddy Power are offering 3/1 (4.00) for any club except Manchester United and Chelsea lifting the trophy and 7/4 (2.75) for a non-Premier League team to reach the final.

Top Odds :
Manchester United @ 2.38 at Bet365
Chelsea @ 2.75 at Centrebet
Middlesbrough @ 15.00 at Centrebet
Portsmouth @ 15.00 at Betfred

Friday, February 15, 2008

Money talks - 11 clubs turnover GBP 100m +

Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal have established themselves in the world top five of highest-earning clubs, according to a new report.

They made £580m between them last season and Deloitte, the business consultancy which compiles the Football Money League, believes their revenues will only increase as English clubs as a whole seek to maximise their money-making potential abroad.

A ninth Premier League title combined with a run to the Champions League semi-finals and a £14m-a-year shirt sponsorship deal helped United earn £212.1m in 2007. Chelsea made £190.5m in the same period and Arsenal took £177.6m, mainly from corporate revenue which doubled to £91m in their first season at the Emirates Stadium.

There are six English clubs in the top 20, Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur and Newcastle United being the others. Financial analysts expect more to follow in 2008 because of this season's £300m Premier League broadcast deal.

The rich list 2008

1 (1) Real Madrid £236.2m
2 (4) Manchester United £212.1m
3 (2) Barcelona £195.3m
4 (6) Chelsea £190.5m
5 (9) Arsenal £177.6m
6 (5) AC Milan £153.0m
7 (8) Bayern Munich £150.3m
8 (10) Liverpool £133.9m
9 (7) Internazionale £131.3m
10 (12) Roma £106.1m

11 (15) Tottenham Hotspur £103.1m
12 (3) Juventus £97.7m
13 (11) Lyon £94.6m
14 (13) Newcastle United £87.1m
15 (16) Hamburg £81.0m
16 (14) Schalke £76.9m
17 (-) Celtic £75.2m
18 (-) Valencia £72.4m
19 (-) Marseille £66.6m
20 (-) Werder Bremen £65.5m

Last year's position in parentheses

Adebayor said what?!

If you have trouble understanding exactly what Emmanuel Adebayor is saying in post-match interviews - YOU ARE NOT ALONE

Here is a helpful(?) subtitled interview with Adebayor after he scored a late goal against Blackburn. There may be a couple of errors .. who can really tell ..

Thursday, February 14, 2008

GBL and ISA Betting Spreadsheet

With the FA Cup on in England this weekend it means that there are only two leagues covered by the "Gooners Numb3rs" (tm) betting spreadsheet.

(League stats are not used to predict cup games - sorry)

Gooners ISA Numb3rs - Italian Serie A
Has 3 likely home winners and one likely away winner. There is also one "value draw" pick - after they returned back to profit last weekend.

Gooners GBL Numb3ers - German Bundesliga
The Bundesliga is proving hard to make a profit on this season - it lost money again last weekend - but the sheet reckons that there are three likely home winners to check out this weekend.

Good luck with your bets.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

UEFA Cup Outright winner bets.

The UEFA Cup resumes this week for the round of 32 with 24 qualifiers plus the eight Champions League dropouts hoping to win Europe's lessor competition.

According to the bookies, these eight teams can generally be regarded as outside shots a long way behind hot favourites Bayern Munich with strong sides like Atletico Madrid, Tottenham, Everton and Villarreal, who all battled through the group stages of this competition, are seen as the other leading contenders at prices ranging from 8.00 to 15.00

Last year's semi-finalists Werder Bremen are the best priced out of those to have fallen from this season's Champions League at a best of 17.00 at BoyleSports.

In regards to the other UK sides, Bolton have been written off at prices as long as 100/1 while Glasgow Rangers have a quote at 50/1 with Paddy Power while Aberdeen, who face Bayern Munich in the next round, are way out at 500/1.

Bayern Munich 4.35 @ VCBet
Athletico Madrid 10.00 @ Interwetten
Tottenham Hotspur 12.00 @ Interwetten
Everton 14.00 @ Interwetten
Fiorentina 17.00 @ Canbet
Villarreal 17.00 @ VCBet
Werder Bremen 17.00 @ BoyleSports

or get the latest UEFA Cup odds at

Saturday, February 09, 2008

VCBet will offer 10K action on any game

Tired of getting your limits reduced at smaller bookmakers? Perhaps UK bookmaker Victor Chandler is for you.

VCBet says that they'll take on a £10,000 liability from anyone.

From 8am on the day of the game VCBet guarantee to lay any of their Premier League and live matches Win/Draw/Win (90 mins) prices to lose a minimum of £10,000 to each and every customer.

No restrictions - no matter how much you've won previously. Victor Chandler reckons that he can take you on.

So if you spot an edge on an English Premier League game and want to get a thick wedge on - you know that UK bookmaker Victor Chandler is your site.

Signup today and get a good joining bonus.

VC BET 100 FREE bet

Henry to return to England - for Newcastle?

This one made me laugh out loud - I had to read it twice to make sure it was genuine.

Newcastle manager Kevin Keegan has stated that Thierry Henry is at the top of his wish-list and UK bookmaker bet365 make the price 11/2 (6.50) for Henry to join Newcastle by the time the transfer window closes at the end of August.

bet365 spokesman Steve Freeth managed to keep a straight face when he said : "If Keegan manages to stay at Newcastle and keep them in the Premiership he could have a bottomless pit at his disposal in the summer – and Thierry Henry is hardly getting rave reviews at Barcelona."

He did add : "However, Newcastle are just 12/1 for relegation and they'd have more chance of signing Lenny Henry if they dropped into the Championship."


GOONER SAYS : Bearing in mind Henry's legendary status at Arsenal, and the fact that he left on extremely good terms last summer, I think that if he was going to turn up anywhere in the Premier League in August - then the Emirates Stadium would be the place to see him.

Keep your money in your pockets on this one.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Betting Spreadsheet - online for weekend

It's pretty quiet this week so I've taken advantage of the time to get the "Gooners Numb3rs" (tm) betting spreadsheet done.

Gooners EPL Numb3rs - English Premier League
Has 4 likely home wins, and one likely away win (Spurs?!)

It also suggests a "value" draw on Saturday - and some value on taking Chelsea to win at Stamford Bridge against Liverpool on Sunday.

Gooners ISA Numb3rs - Italian Serie A
Has 3 likely home winners and one likely away winner.

There are two more value draw picks - although these are on a 0-4 run - so be a little careful with your stake size,

Gooners GBL Numb3ers - German Bundesliga
The Bundesliga is proving hard to make a profit on this season - but the sheet reckons that there are five likely home winners (at reasonable prices too) and a couple of discover value plays too.

Check it out.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Adebayor chasing Ronaldo for top scorer honours

Arsenal striker Emmanuel Adebayor has had his odds cut to finish as the Premier League's top scorer this season after closing the gap on Cristiano Ronaldo at the weekend.

Ronaldo remains favourite but has been eased out to 1.83 at Centrebet.

Adebayor scored twice in Arsenal's 3-1 win at Manchester City to take his tally to 18 while Ronaldo stayed on 19 after firing a rare blank against Tottenham. Adebayor is quoted at 2.65 at VCBet now.

Liverpool's Fernando Torres added to his tally with a goal against Sunderland but is a distant third favourite with 12 goals. You can get on Torres at 15.00 at Bet365.

While Chelsea's Nicolas Anelka also scored and has 11 goals now and he's priced at 17.00 at Bet365.

Elsewhere Carlos Tevez (26.00), Robbie Keane (34.00) and Dimitar Berbatov (51.00) are also offered - but it's pretty much a "fan" bet - and you'd probably feel better by donating your money to charity than simply handing it over to the bookmakers.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Arsenal go top after beating Man City 3-1

Arsenal scored a 3-1 success at Manchester City thanks to two goals from Emmanuel Adebayor and a fine strike from Eduardo da Silva, have been cut to 6/4 (2.50) to win the title.

Manchester United
equalised with the last kick of the game in a 1-1 draw with Spurs at White Hart Lane to pick up a point. United were eased to 4/5 (1.80) for the title by Stan James.

Betfair exchange customers backed under 1.5 goals down to 1.04 and Tottenham were matched at just 1.01 when a Carlos Tevez goal from a corner at the death sealed a dramatic point for the Reds.

(and showed just how unsafe it is to chase those "easy money" bets at the exchange)

Chelsea lost ground on Arsenal after being held to a 1-1 draw at Portsmouth where Nicolas Anelka's 55th minute strike was wiped out by new Pompey signing Jermain Defoe. The Blues are out to 11/2.


Arsenal currently top the table on 60pts, two ahead of United and five clear of Chelsea. All three have played 25 games.


Wales have been slashed to 3/1 second favourites to win the Six Nations after they staged a fightback to beat England 26-19 for their first win at Twickenham in 20 years.

Wales scored 20 unanswered points in the space of just 13 second-half minutes - including tries from Lee Byrne and Mike Phillips - as England self-destructed.

England headed into the weekend's first round of games second in the betting at 15/8 but they've now drifted out to 9/2 fourth favourites.

France are not in action against Scotland until Sunday but they've still seen their price cut to 11/8 from 13/8 in the wake of this result. The Scots remain unchanged at 12/1.

Meanwhile Ireland have been trimmed to 7/2 from 4/1 after they made a hesitant start to their campaign with an unconvincing 16-11 victory over Italy.

Girvan Dempsey crossed in the 18th minute to hand Ireland an encouraging start and the kicking of Ronan O'Gara, who finished with 11 points, kept them in command, despite a spirited fightback from the visitors.