Search This Blog

Thursday, August 26, 2010

2010/11 Champions League Group Draw

Inter Milan coach Rafa Benitez makes a quick return to England with Werder Bremen, Tottenham Hotspur and FC Twente in Group A.

Group G is likely to be billed this season's 'Group of Death' with AC Milan, Real Madrid and Ajax drawn alongside each other. The trio have won the European Cup 20 times between them. French team Auxerre complete the quartet.

Group A
Inter Milan, Werder Bremen, Tottenham, FC Twente

Group B
Lyon, Benfica, Schalke, Hapoel Tel-Aviv

Group C
Manchester United, Valencia, Rangers, Bursaspor

Group D
Barcelona, Panathinaikos, FC Copenhagen, Rubin Kazan

Group E
Bayern Munich, AS Roma, Basel, CFR Cluj

Group F
Chelsea, Marseille, Spartak Moscow, Zilina

Group G
AC Milan, Real Madrid, Ajax, Auxerre

Group H
Arsenal, Shakhtar Donetsk, Braga, Partizan Belgrade

The 2011 final will be held at Wembley stadium.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Liverpool travel to Turkey without Gerrard or Torres

Liverpool will be without captain Steven Gerrard and striker Fernando Torres for their Europa League play-off second leg against Trabzonspor in Turkey on Thursday.

Gerrard has a back problem while manager Roy Hodgson has decided not to risk Torres in a third successive game following his injury problems last season.

However, both are expected to be fit for Sunday's Barclays Premier League clash with West Brom.

Defender Daniel Agger (concussion) and Maxi Rodriguez (illness) are also missing from the squad which travels to Turkey this morning with a 1-0 lead from the first leg.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Money talks - and the Champions League is huge cash

English teams continue to dominate the Champions League in financial terms even if they failed to win on the pitch, figures released on Monday by UEFA have revealed.

Despite not progressing beyond the quarter-finals, Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool earned a combined total of 140million euros (£114.6million) from television and prize money alone from last season's tournament.

That figure is comfortably higher that the 116m euros (£95m) earned by the four Italian teams including champions Inter Milan, and the 105m euros (£86m) by the four Spanish teams in the competition as the English TV market is far more copetitive.

Inter Milan were the top individual earners with 48.7m euros (£39.8m) followed by Manchester United with 45.8m euros (£37.4m). Arsenal, who also made the quarter-finals, earned £27.3m with Chelsea making £26.3m and Liverpool £23.6m.

The figures also highlight the discrepancy with sums earned from the new Europa League, even though that competition has been boosted by central marketing of TV and sponsorship rights.

Beaten finalists Fulham earned 10m euros, or £8.1m, while Everton's income was £2.8m, and Liverpool earned £2.3m after dropping down from the Champions League for the knock-out phase.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Win a £3000 Holiday plus £500 spending money with Betfred

Simply predict the winners of the English Premiership, Championship, League One, League Two & Scottish Premiership for the 2010/11 Season.

If you can do that then you will be in with a great chance of winning a Fantastic Holiday, including £500 worth of spending money at BetFred.

Entry is totally free and open to all new and existing customers with a BetFred betting account.

Entries close 29th September 2010.


The competition is free to enter for all new and existing customers.

The prize will take form of £3000 of high street travel agency vouchers and £500, or equivalent currency, worth of spending money paid to the nominated bank account.

In the event of multiple winners, the person closest to the total points gained by the winners of the Premier League, Championship, League One, League Two and Scottish Premier League will be deemed the winner.

In the event of a tie a random draw will take place to determine the overall winner.

Enter the free competition at BetFred now.

Thursday, August 19, 2010


Ireland's top bookie Paddy Power have reported record levels of betting ahead of Sunday's All Ireland Football semi-final between Cork and Dublin.

Over €500,000 has already been staked on the eagerly anticipated tie making it the highest turnover championship fixture of the season and with three days left to go until throw-in Paddy Power are predicting that over €1,000,000 will be wagered on the game.

Cork are currently the 4/6 favourites however a late surge of support for Dublin has Paddy Power on red alert and the 13/8 available on the Dubs looks like the value bet of the week.

Paddy Power said "There’s no doubt about it, punters are rolling up their sleeves and betting like men. We’ve seen big money coming for the Dubs over the past 24-hours and I'm fairly certain that the 13/8 on Dublin won’t be hanging around too long"

Paddy Power are also taking bets on the total points tally of the Brogan brothers during Sunday's game with 11/10 available on Alan and Bernard scoring ten or more points between them.


4/6 Cork
15/2 Draw
13/8 Dublin

Check out all the odds at Paddy Power's website now

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

European Cups - Champions League - First Leg Results

FT Zenit St. Petersburg 1 - 0 Auxerre
Aleksandr Kerzhakov's third-minute header gave Luciano Spalletti's side a slender lead to take to France next week.

FT Dynamo Kyiv 1 - 1 Ajax Amsterdam
Reduced to ten men and 1-0 down in quick succession, the hosts fought back to keep alive their hopes ahead of the return in Amsterdam.

FT Rosenborg 2 - 1 FC Copenhagen
Jesper Grønkjær's 84th-minute header gave the visitors a lifeline after the Norwegian champions had established a two-goal lead.

FT Sparta Prague 0 - 2 Zilina
Second-half goals from Momodou Ceesay and Tomáš Oravec left the Slovakian visitors on the verge of a first group appearance.

FT Young Boys Bern 3 - 2 Tottenham H.
The hosts raced to a 3-0 lead as Spurs believed their own press about how they only needed to turn up to win during the first half hour - but two away goals salvaged Tottenham's hopes of advancing to the group stage

Sunday, August 15, 2010

English Premier League - Chelsea star with 6-0 win over WBA

Didier Drogba scored a hat-trick as Chelsea notched the biggest opening-day win in the Premier League a 6-0 victory over West Brom at Stamford Bridge.

But Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti felt his team did "nothing special" despite defeating West Brom 6-0 in their opening Premier League fixture.

"We did our job," said Ancelotti. "This team can show this kind of play, scoring a lot of goals. "We had a difficult pre-season, but now everything has come back to be OK. We played a good game and I am happy."

Malouda 6
Drogba 45+1
Drogba 55
Lampard 63
Drogba 68
Malouda 90

Monday, August 09, 2010

Martin O'Neill quits as Aston Villa manager

Aston Villa fans have been stunned by the news that Martin O'Neill has quit as manager with immediate effect after four years in charge.

A club statement on Monday afternoon said: "Aston Villa can confirm that Martin O'Neill has resigned as manager of the football club with immediate effect."

O'Neill has resigned only five days before the start of the new Barclays Premier League campaign.

Villa owner Randy Lerner insisted O'Neill had pledged his future to Villa in May after much speculation over whether or not the former Celtic boss would quit.

But O'Neill has now decided to end his reign with reserve team manager Kevin MacDonald taking charge of Saturday's opener with West Ham.

Win 10,000 in free bets at Ladbrokes

win 10,000 at Ladbrokes
Here is a free competition for UK  & Ireland residents at Ladbrokes :

Predict the correct finishing order of the top 3 and bottom 3 teams in the 2010/11 English Premier League season for a chance to win.

There is a £10,000 prize pool up for grabs.

If more than one participant correctly predicts the finishing order, the £10,000 will be divided equally amoung the winning entries.

It's free to enter (but you need a Ladbrokes account)

Enter at Ladbrokes before 12:45pm BST Saturday August 14.

enter the competition at ladbrokes


That link also has a GBP £25 free matched bet for any new players who do want to deposit.

If you already have a Ladbrokes account just click on their logo when you hit the landing page and then look for the £10,000 competition down the right hand side of the Ladbrokes front page.

Friday, August 06, 2010

UEFA Champions League play-off round draw

The UEFA Champions League play-off round was conducted in Nyon on Friday morning, and it was good news for Tottenham Hotspur who will face Swiss side Young Boys of Berne.

Champions Route
FC Salzburg (AUT) v Hapoel Tel-Aviv FC (ISR)
Rosenborg BK (NOR) v FC København (DEN)
FC Basel 1893 (SUI) v FC Sheriff (MDA)
AC Sparta Praha (CZE) v MŠK Žilina (SVK)
FK Partizan (SRB) v RSC Anderlecht (BEL)

League Route
BSC Young Boys (SUI) v Tottenham Hotspur FC (ENG)
SC Braga (POR) v Sevilla FC (ESP)
SV Werder Bremen (GER) v UC Sampdoria (ITA)
FC Zenit St. Petersburg (RUS) v AJ Auxerre (FRA)
FC Dynamo Kyiv (UKR) v AFC Ajax (NED)

The first legs to be held on 17/18 August and the returns a week later.

The ten winners will join the 22 automatic entrants in the UEFA Champions League group stage, the draw for which is held in Monaco at 18.00CET on 26 August.

The losers will take part in the UEFA Europa League group stage.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Real Madrid announce Kaka out for 4 months after knee surgery

Real Madrid will be without Brazillian midfielder Kaka for three to four months after he underwent surgery on his left knee.

The 28-year-old Kaka travelled to Belgium to seek advice from specialist Dr Marc Martens after experiencing pain during his club's pre-season training camp in the United States.

He was diagnosed with a damaged meniscus and although he had a successful operation, Kaká faces a lengthy lay-off and will miss the bulk of Madrid's UEFA Champions League group stage campaign.

The Brazilian international moved to Madrid from AC Milan for €68m last summer, but persistent groin problems limited the former FIFA World Player of the Year to 33 appearances in all competitions in his first season at the Santiago Bernabéu.

Liverpool up for sale to the highest bidder - going, going ...

BBC Sport are reporting that Liverpool are close to being sold to a "Canadian bid" being led by Syrian businessman Yahya Kirdi

(Source : BBC Sport : Canadian consortium 'close to buying Liverpool' )

There is also talk of up to six rival bids, including Chinese investor Kenny Huang who is the head of Hong Kong-based investment company QSL Sports Ltd, is thought to value the club at around £325m.

It's all played with a positive spin, with talk of funding to include repayment of the existing bank debt and financing of a new stadium in Liverpool's Stanley Park - as well as transfer funds being made available to new manager Roy Hodgson.

But I really do not like the sound of the description of "consortium of Canadian and Middle East investors" - because if you are talking about business investors then surely these people want to eventually take more out of the football club than they put in - after all isn't that the whole point of investing?

This is where the idea that a football club is a business starts to unravel, as the main point of a football club is to play football not to return a profit to stakeholders. I cannot understand why these faceless people want to put in 600m, 700m or even 800m into any football club as an "investment".

Where is the eventual payoff to these businesses- and how will it be good for Liverpool FC? What do you think?

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Chelsea trying to sign Brazilian midfielder Ramires

The best RamirezBBC Sport are reporting that Chelsea aim to close a £17m deal to sign Brazilian international Ramires from Benfica.

Reports claim that the 23 year-old midfielder is under-taking a medical at Chelsea on Tuesday.

Ramires? Who? The only Ramirez I remember was the character that Sean Connery played in that Sci-Fi film Highlander ... as in "Ramirez - you Spanish peacock" ... but it seems unlikely that it's the same guy.

It turns out the footballing Ramires has played for Brazil 16 times and was at the 2010 World Cup. I saw this Ramires on the pitch in South Africa, or at least I was aware of him because of the slightly unusual Spanish sounding name, but other than that he was pretty much anonymous.

It seems that £17m doesn't buy you much if it's worn the famous yellow shirt - he only cost Benfica £6m from Cruzeiro last season - talk about inflation.

Monday, August 02, 2010

Who is the best bookmaker for ... Australian players?

It's a question that I'm asked all the time ... who is the best bookmaker? and the answer is not a simple X/Y answer as it usually dependant on where you live and what you want to bet on.

So today's blog post will cover Who is the best bookmaker for ... Australian players?

Let's start at the begining :

Is Sports Betting legal in Australia?

Yes. Absolutely legal. There are restrictions are placed on the licensing of gambling operators, and usually this means that the operation must be based in Australia.

Basically, the Australian government wants to be able to tax the online bookmaker. This has resulted in a well regulated environment and it is perfectly safe and legal to bet online in Australia.

It is legal for Australian player to bet elsewhere, but those offshore companies are not allowed to specifically advertise or target Australian players.

Who is the best "local" bookmaker ?

There are four good Australian based online options available for Australian bettors, bookmakers Sportsbet, Centrebet, and IASBet and also betting exchange Betfair.

In my opinion the best of the bunch is Centrebet who cover all the major world sports and also all the action at home in Australia. Whether it is in the NRL, Super 14, A-League, AFL Aussie Rules or any major sporting event, Centrebet offer a price early, and keep that action going.

Throw in a 100% matched free bet up to $50 (for Australian players only), and the fact that Centrebet will take bets of AUD$10,000 or more on major games and you have a quality operation.

Forms, Results, and Live Scores are available on either the main sports page or the racing section at Centrebet and you can even get SMS results of your bets if you are using Centrebet's Mobile betting platform.

All-in-all, if you are betting sports in Australia - you should be at Centrebet.

Is Depositing and Withdrawing for Sports Betting easy?

It is very simple. A deposit to create an online sports betting account is as easy as typing in your credit card details.

And these days most online gambling sites allow you to use international e-wallets, which means that the bookmakers never ever get to see your banking details at all.

Popular e-wallets like Moneybookers and Neteller are great for moving money between bookmakers and for getting quick payouts.

What about other worldwide sportsbook options?

Sure, there are other places out there that are as solid and reliable as Centrebet, and some have some better features.

For access to the Best Bonuses then Bet365, or Victor Chandler are very good operations, while the Best Odds are usually found at PinnacleSports (but Pinnacle do not offer any join bonuses).

But these places do not offer as big a range of bets on Australian sports, nor post their prices as early, as the Australian market is not so important to them.

If you are frequently betting on European sports (particularly football) then I do recommend opening at least one other account with an international bookmaker from that list above.

So - Who is the best bookmaker for Australian players?

In my opinion - after 10 years of researching and writing about online gambling - it's pretty straight forward for Australian sports punters.

First, open a betting account at Centrebet and get going. Enjoy it.

Secondly, open an account at Bet365 to give you access to some more "free bets" and also to enable you to compare odds prices on bets - and take the highest offer!

You now have access to two of the best sports betting locations online, and you can shop around for prices and maximise your winnings. Also both of these places offer poker, bingo and casino play as well - all available from the same betting account.

Finally, as you get comfortable with online sports betting, and the concept of shopping around for the best price you should check out our main sportsbook guide on the main site and check out your options.

Good luck and enjoy the action!

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Emirates Cup : Arsenal 1-1 AC Milan - Chamakh looks good

Arsenal new signing Marouane Chamakh showed that Arsene Wenger has found another good buy with a clinical finish in Saturday's 1-1 draw against AC Milan in the Emirates Cup.

Wenger landed Chamakh on a free transfer from Bordeaux in May after a lengthy wait for the old contract to expire and the early signs suggest the Morocco striker will prove to have been worth the wait.

Chamakh marked his first appearance at the Emirates Stadium with a man of the match display capped by a predatory first half strike as he led the Arsenal attack in the targetman role normally occupied by Robin van Persie.

Chamakh put the Gunners ahead in the 36th minute after Andrey Arshavin surged forward from midfield before slipping a pass towards Chamakh, who timed his run perfectly to guide a low shot past Abbiati.

The Gunners were denied a winning start to their four-team pre-season tournament however as Alexandre Pato headed a late equaliser for Milan.