Thursday, 30 May 2013

The Latest Transfer Odds

Transfer Rumours: Who Will Be The Ins and Outs At St. James Park?

We're only a couple of weeks into the close season and already the transfer rumour mill is into full swing with new potential transfers being reported every day.  A lot of the time the stories make no sense at all and you get the impression sometimes that the papers have just plucked a player out of one hat and then plucked a team out of the next hat when coming up with their stories.

I think sometimes a better guide to potential transfers are the odds being offered by the bookies, as obviously bookies have a lot more to lose than newspapers if they get it wrong.

The latest rumour in yesterday's papers was that Monaco are interested in Hatem Ben Arfa and according to SkyBet the current odds on a move for Ben Arfa are as follows:

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

2012/13 Season Round-Up

"No football for three months!"

It's been a season to forget and one with very few positives, but despite the poor standard of football on offer this season, I still found myself yesterday morning thinking, "Ar, no!  No football for three months!"

Obviously the eternal optimist in me wants to hope that next season will be better, but for that to happen changes clearly need to be made.  I've gradually lost patience with Alan Pardew and his constant excuse making as the season has gone on, but I'm not necessarily as desperate to see him go as some fans are.  I just want him to start accepting responsibility when things go wrong.

Managers are susceptible to good and bad form, just like players, but if things are to improve then Pardew needs to recognise his mistakes.  He needs to be more ambitious.  He needs to realise that avoiding relegation isn't a success.  He needs to realise that all clubs suffer from injuries so the time to complain about a lack of depth in the squad is pre-season when you can do something about it, rather than halfway through the season when the damage is already done.

Thursday, 16 May 2013

General Football Tips (19/05/13)

...And Odds For The Toon V Arsenal

So in the end it was Wigan who claimed the third and final relegation spot, and although the mackems would obviously have been our first choice, it's safe to say that few Newcastle fans will be disappointed to see Wigan making the drop.

The end of a season that most Toon fans will want to quickly forget sees us come up against an Arsenal side who need three points to ensure a Champions League spot.

SkyBet have the match priced as follows:

Newcastle - 6.0
Draw - 4.0
Arsenal - 1.53

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Latest Relegation Odds

An Entertaining Side Dish...

I mentioned a few weeks ago that "...misery for Sunderland can never be more than an entertaining side dish compared to the joy of a Toon victory."

That remains true, but now that we've guaranteed our Premier League survival it's nice to be able to relax and enjoy the 'entertaining side dish' of the battle for the final relegation spot.

Ladbrokes currently have the relegation battle priced as follows:

Wigan - 1/25
Sunderland - 14/1
Aston Villa - 25/1

Monday, 13 May 2013

"I don't really care if Arsenal win 4-0." ...Alan Pardew

It was Pardew's "Thank God we are not in the Europa League again” comment which angered me the most.

Our second away win in the league all season owed as much to the mistakes of Jose Bosingwa and QPR's overall lack of quality as it did to our own performance, but at least we can 'celebrate' the fact that our Premier League survival is now guaranteed.

A Liverpool friend of mine commented that being involved in the relegation battle must have been 'exciting' which just shows how little he knows about being involved in a relegation battle.  'Exciting' has been a rarely used word when watching Pardew's tactics this season, and 'nervous' would be a far more appropriate word to describe the final run-in to of our season.

I have to admit that when fans were criticising Pardew earlier in the season that for a long time I personally thought the blame deserved to be pointed higher up and that it was our failure to strengthen the squad pre-season which was the real reason to blame for our current predicament.  However, Alan Pardew's constant excuse making has gradually worn down my patience more and more, and he really needs to start accepting responsibility for our shortcomings.  If Pardew had put as much effort into improving our results as he does into making excuses then we would probably have been challenging for Europe again rather than battling to avoid relegation.

Thursday, 9 May 2013

General Football Tips (11-12/05/13)

...And Odds For QPR V The Toon

After Swansea's comeback against Wigan the other night, things are now looking slightly more comfortable.  SkyBet currently have us priced at a very skinny 1/20 to stay up, but I'll still feel a lot less nervous if we can beat QPR.

A week or so ago the possible permutations on how things would turn out at the bottom of the table were seemingly endless, but now the maths is suddenly looking a lot simpler.  If we get more points against QPR on Sunday than Wigan get against Arsenal on Tuesday then we're safe.  (Update: Chesea's win over Villa means if we beat QPR then we're definitely safe irrespective of how Wigan get on at Arsenal).

Hopefully this late season scare will serve as a wake up call to Ashley and Llambias for next season, but for now all that matters is the result against QPR.

Once again I'm avoiding making any tips on the Toon and just posting the odds for the most popular Toon betting markets, then following this up with a few general football tips...

Monday, 6 May 2013

General Football Tips (04-06/05/13): Round-Up

One point won or two points dropped?

I think before the weekend if you'd offered us a draw then most fans would happily have taken a point.  However, Wigan's comeback against West Brom and Villa's win over Norwich, not to mention Cisse's 'goal' over the line which wasn't given meant there were mixed feelings on Saturday evening.

Frustratingly, the linesman Matthew Wilkes who fell over and didn't see Cisse's goal was the same linesman who, according to the FA, witnessed Callum NcManaman's potentially career threatening challenge on Haidara and decided it wasn't a foul.

SkyBet have us priced at 1/8 to stay up, so hopefully the players will show the same level of confidence going into our final two games.  For this and our final two matches I'm steering clear of bets on the Toon, but my general football tips made a slight profit this week.

Thursday, 2 May 2013

General Football Tips (04-06/05/13)

All That Matters Is Survival...

I started this blog to test whether it's better to bet with your head or your heart and so far this season my general football tips have performed with a clear advantage over my Toon tips.  Our disappointing results have meant that at times I've been overly optimistic when backing The Toon.

On the other hand a few months ago my general football tips went on a run of seven successive profitable weeks and then followed this up more recently with another run of seven out of eight profitable weeks, so I would have to conclude that it's definitely wiser to bet with your head rather than your heart.

However, that's possibly in part down to the inconsistent season we've had and I suspect that Man United fans (and Reading and QPR fans if they were being objective) would probably have found their own teams' results easier to predict.