Thursday, September 24, 2009

EPL Handicapping: Betting Advice on this Week's Fixtures

By El Chupa
It's probably worth pointing out at this point that El Chupa and El Luchador have slightly different betting strategies.

El Luchador likes to go for the big fish. He trolls the deep water for the big catches, i.e., low percentage wagers with high payouts. His balls are large.

El Chupa lacks the intestinal fortitude of his mentor and instead looks for high percentage wagers that pay less-than-even odds. This can still be a substantial percentage of the original wager (50-90%) but certainly not double the money or better. Slow and steady is his motto.

This tends to result in El Luchador going for parlays that will pay big when they come in, while El Chupa looks for parlays that are virtually sure things (if there is such a thing) but offer less of a reward. It also means El Chupa is VERY judicious about the straight bets he makes. El Luchador? Not so much. . .

This also means that El Chupa often uses his statistical acumen, such as it is, to identify matches one should AVOID, as well as matches that look like high percentage wagers. When he can find a match he think is both a solid wager AND +100 or better odds, he is VERY happy.

So, on to this week's picks.

Everton at Portsmouth - This one is intriguing as Everton is being given only -115, practically begging you to put $15 on what looks like a mismatch. We don't like Everton's defense at all, they're giving up too many goals. And they haven't earned a single point away from home. But Portsmouth looks so freaking helpless that it's hard to predict when they will break out of their funk. It certainly will be at home, right? But against Everton? We think not. This match could also make one game of a parlay, as the -115 will help boost your payout if you pick a DEFINITE mismatch like Burnley at Spurs, which we think will result in Spurs demolishing the visiting side. Currently, our book is paying +140 on a two-game parlay of Everton and Spurs.

Aston Villa at Blackburn - This match is intriguing as we have Villa rated very high in the power rankings, and the +120 odds are attractive. However, our data also tells us that Blackburn doesn't give up shots, doesn't give up shots on goal, and doesn't give up corners. They are right at the league average for GA with 8. So Villa has their work cut out for them. El Chupa will be very tempted to look at this one closely and take a straight bet on one of these two teams.

Arsenal at Fulham
- It's tempting to think Fulham will play Arsenal tough at Craven Cottage (coolest freaking name ever), but we think Arsenal will overpower the homeside and quite possibly when by a two-goal margin. We've been unimpressed with Fulham so far, and think that they look like goals will be hard to come by. They only have 16 SOG all season and only Burnley is worse with 13 (the league average is 27). The over is not paying well, and we can't see Fulham winning a goal-fest. This would be a good match for a parlay.

Upset of the week: Man U at Stoke - Do we think Stoke will beat Man U? No. But at +675, wtf? Put up $5. Man U is going to give up goals this year, and they will lose one or two more matches to the likes of Burnley. So, trust your gut, or not, whatever. Fuck Man U.

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