Football

World Cup Final – France vs Croatia

Whats the French for Apres le Deluge And so it is. After a wonderful tournament full of great games, huge shocks and terrific open football, we are left with a fairly uninspiring final. Perhaps you can have too much of a good thing. At least we aren’t expecting too much. Previous finals have promised excitement with two juggernauts going head-to-head, only for tedium to flourish, punctuated by a solitary goal. France to be fair, usually give a good final – their previous two remarkable for the antics of Zinedine Zidane – but he cant be relied up on to brighten up this one. Croatia have taken the ‘Germany 2002’ route to the final, although they did at least emerge with... Continue reading...

This entry was posted on Friday, July 13th, 2018
(Posted in: Articles, Betting, Football, Oggsblog)

World Cup Semi-Final England vs Croatia

13/10!!! And so here we are then. After all that fuss, all those ‘root and branch’ overhauls, countless managers, players and suits. And all it took was a middle-class chap in a waistcoat. Who knew. England are astonishingly in the last three of the World Cup, and could not have asked for a easier fixture than Croatia, at this stage of a tournament. Yes it is the toughest opposition England have faced so far, but that is only because fortune in the semi-final draw, follows fortune at every other stage. England could reach a final without playing any former winners, as Argentina managed to do four years ago. And indeed, Croatia won’t just roll over. And in Luka Modric and... Continue reading...

This entry was posted on Wednesday, July 11th, 2018
(Posted in: Articles, Betting, Football, Oggsblog)

France vs Belgium

For the right to play England…obviously So why exactly has the Premier League had such a good World Cup? We can’t even trace this one back to Gareth Southgate, whose last contribution to the Prem was removing Middlesbrough from it, an act which certainly enhanced the division, but was too long ago to ascertain a definite cause and effect. Our opinion is that the games have been allowed to flow a great deal more, rough and tumble has been permitted, with the referees happy to leave it to VAR for any secondary action. Whereas previous World Cups have been very stop-start with all sorts of niggles and shenanigans, this one has had the tempo of an English top-flight game. Despite... Continue reading...

This entry was posted on Tuesday, July 10th, 2018
(Posted in: Articles, Football, Oggsblog)

England vs Sweden

It’s Coming Home Forget the sceptics. Forget Gareth Southgate warning how we tend to underestimate the Swedes. Forget 52 years of hurt. This, is as good a chance as an England team will ever get of reaching the semis of a World Cup. This Sweden side are poor, and you don’t need to check the name of Seb Larsson on the teamsheet to see that. Having squeaked past South Korea, they then failed to beat a German team who played much of the match with ten men. And they didn’t even qualify properly, relying on a play-off to edge past a tedious Italy XI. The only worry of course, is that England aren’t that great either. Tunisia was a fluke,... Continue reading...

This entry was posted on Friday, July 6th, 2018
(Posted in: Articles, Football, Oggsblog)

England vs Panama

Rashford for a HAT-trick Having managed to get over the line against Tunisia, attention now turns to what may even be a more physical grapple, against the worst team in the tournament in Panama. Despite it being a close thing in the end, for half an hour England played as well as any team in the tournament, bar perhaps Brazil’s first 30 against Switzerland or the middle spell where Spain bewitched Portugal with some classic tika taka. The opposition may not have been great, but England haven’t played that well at a World Cup since 2002. Optimism has been creaking slowly, especially with Colombia and Germany losing, and potentially removing obstacles at the last sixteen and last eight. We don’t... Continue reading...

This entry was posted on Friday, June 22nd, 2018
(Posted in: Articles, Betting, Football, Oggsblog)

World Cup Group Betting: Groups E-H

Group E: Brazil, Switzerland, Serbia, Costa Rica A good old-fashioned group this one, with a clear favourite, a clear wooden spoon recipient (sorry Costa Rica – you had your fun four years ago), and two sluggish European nations fighting it out to lose to Germany in the last sixteen. The big game will be Serbia vs Switzerland, and we fancy the Eastern Europeans to shade it, in a battle between two ageing sides. 2.2 is the price you will currently find the Serbs to qualify. Group F: Germany, Mexico, Sweden, South Korea No prizes for group winners here. Likewise for rock bottom, as South Korea’s predicted rise after their 2002 antics has never materialised. Sweden showed in the play-offs that... Continue reading...

This entry was posted on Thursday, June 14th, 2018
(Posted in: Articles, Betting, Football, Oggsblog)

World Cup Groups: A-D

Group A: Russia, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Uruguay Two huge unknowns torment us in this group, notably how good (or otherwise) will Russia be when push comes to shove, and how fit is Mo Salah. Uruguay are certain to qualify, and Saudi Arabia are certain not to. It is the second qualifying spot that interests us. We can’t foresee Russia falling at the first hurdle, not if Putin has anything to do with it, so we would advise the 1.48 on the hosts getting through. Group B: Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Iran Don’t expect too many goals in this one, with Morocco and Iran both containing the best defences on their respective continents, Portugal managing to bore their way through Euro 16,... Continue reading...

This entry was posted on Wednesday, June 13th, 2018
(Posted in: Articles, Betting, Football, Oggsblog)

World Cup Specials – 4 to Watch

Back Morocco to be the best African team @ 7.4 Having been drawn in a group alongside Spain and Portugal, it is little surprise that despite being the best team in Africa, Morocco are only fourth (ahead of only Tunisia) favourites to go the furthest. However, we remain fairly unconvinced by Portugal’s ageing limbs (surely they used up all their luck winning Euro 2016), and even if Morocco were to only beat Iran, that may still be enough to finish ahead of their continental counterparts. Denmark to reach the ¼ Finals @ 5.6 The big threat to the Danes marching through to the last eight, comes not in a pretty comfortable group, but rather in the form of last 16... Continue reading...

This entry was posted on Friday, June 8th, 2018
(Posted in: Articles, Betting, Football, Oggsblog)

World Cup 2018 

Not you Kane The big quadrennial betting event is here at last. Here to save bookmakers’ asses (unless England manage to win it…) comes Jules Rimet himself. But for the casual punter, there is only one market of interest. Who wins? The usual names pop up in this one, and rightly so. Germany the holders – shorn now of their inspirational captain Philip Lahm, but with a new generation of exciting talent. Brazil – can they recover from their humiliation in a country familiar to many of their national team? The likes of Jesus, Neymar and Coutinho will hope so. And is this the last chance for Messi, and will he make it count? A lopsided Argentina will be optimistic... Continue reading...

This entry was posted on Saturday, June 2nd, 2018
(Posted in: Articles, Betting, Football, Oggsblog)

European Cup Final 2018 – Liverpool vs Real Madrid

Pulling Down Trousers to Compare Histories For all that we live in a post-modern world of equality, where everyone and everything must be taken solely at face value, history has a way of declaring its indomitable hand. Liverpool and the European Cup. Anfield and European nights. It is this history that has dragged the club to a third Champions League final in 13 years, when other, better English sides in this time (Wenger’s Arsenal, Pep’s City, the current Spurs XI) have nowhere near as good a record. But if we are pulling down our trousers and comparing respective histories, even Liverpool will have to give way to los Blancos, the most successful side in the competition’s history. Indeed, in the... Continue reading...

This entry was posted on Saturday, May 26th, 2018
(Posted in: Articles, Betting, Football, Oggsblog)
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