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Jonathan Cordingley 17th Oct 2010 - 2:57

Sunday's La Liga previews

Deportivo La Coruna v Osasuna, 16:00

Manuel Angel Lotina's charges were poor at best in their 6-1 away hammering at the hands of Real Madrid last weekend. Their only bright spot came via the headed consolation goal of Juan Rodriguez (12/1 to score first, 5/1 anytime).

Back at the Riazor today, not so super Deportivo (11/8) will look to restore confidence by beating Camacho's Osasuna and, in the process, earn their first win of the La Liga season.

A Depor win may be the most likely outcome from a pricing standpoint, but it is the one outcome I am not considering betting on. The Galician's will win at some point, but I prefer to go against them until it happens.

In their disappointing 1-1 home draw Levante, Osasuna (2/1) spurned countless chances before going ahead via stalwart striker Walter Pandiani (5/1 to score first, 5/4 anytime).

The big Uruguayan target man tends to score more at home than he does away, but would still be my top pick if I wanted to bet on the scorers market today.

As for other betting opportunities: If you like to bet on the under/over goals market, under 2.5 looks to be the sensible pick and is priced at 1/2. In the double result market, Draw/Osasuna could prove to be a worthy punt and is priced at 6/1.

A 90 minute draw (11/5) is certainly not out of the question and for anyone thinking along those lines, you may also want to consider the double result of Draw/Draw (16/5).

As for a potential scorelines, 0-0 (priced at 13/2) and 1-0 to Osasuna (7/1) are my favoured suggestions. For anyone who fancies a scorecast, Pandiani and 1-0 to Osasuna is my pick - priced at 28/1.

As always, digest the facts and opinion before making your own choice. I'm 50% in favour of an Osasuna win and 50% in favour of a draw. Given that the double chance bet is too short at 1/2, I'd suggest consideration of Osasuna - draw no bet at 11/10.


Levante v Real Sociedad, 16:00

Valencia based Levante (6/4) were lucky to gain a point in their 1-1 away draw with Osasuna last time out. Coach Luis Garcia has Sergio (12/1 to score first, 5/1 anytime) to thank for the equalizer and he'll be hoping that the veteran midfielder has his shooting boots on again today.

Today's opponents, Real Sociedad (9/5), beat Espanyol as recommended two weeks ago, but sadly former Espanyol and current Sociedad striker Raul Tamudo (11/2 to score first, 6/4 anytime) could not find the back of the net.

In fact, Tamudo has not found the back of the net in either of his last two games and has therefore fallen foul of my zero goals in 2 games means I won't back you rule.

In the 90 minute market, it's notable that Levante have failed to register a league win on home ground so far this season. They have, however, played and lost to Sevilla and Villarreal along with an impressive 0-0 draw against Real Madrid in their last home game, so you could argue that their winless home start is down to the level of opposition.

Sociedad are at least one level below that opposition and, given their away record of two defeats and one draw, should theoretically expect nothing better than a draw (11/5) in tonight's game.

Anyone who does fancy the draw and wants a scoreline to compliment it might consider 0-0 (priced at 17/2) and 1-1 (priced at 11/2).

Following the same theme, the double result bet of Draw/Draw is worth attention at 18/5.

If you want to bet on the over/ under goals markets, under 2.5 (4/6) seems the most likely winner on paper.

Worth a punt: Draw (11/5)


Mallorca v Espanyol, 16:00

Great Dane Michael Laudrup showed what a shrewd tactician he is by holding Barca to a draw at the Nou Camp in week six. Back on the Island tonight, his Mallorca (evens) side will be expected to take all three points against another side from Barcelona, Espanyol.

After losing 1-0 thanks to an 85th minute own goal away to Sociedad, Pochettino's Espanyol (11/4) are still without a single point or goal on their travels.

Back from injury to help with the goal drought is Pablo Osvaldo (6/1 to score first, 7/4 anytime). I expect the Argentinean front man to become a regular fixture in my worth a punt recommended first scorer bets once he gets his form back. However, I'll only be backing him at home.

A player you could consider backing today is Mallorca's on loan Bordeaux striker - another Argentinean - Fernando Cavenaghi (5/1 to score first, 5/4 anytime).

Senor Cavenaghi did not score in the Nou Camp last weekend, but he did score a brace (his first goals for the club) in Mallorca's previous fixture, the 2-0 defeat of Real Sociedad.

If you fancy a scorecast involving Cavenaghi, I'd suggest you consider 1-0 and 2-0 to Mallorca (priced at 22/1 and 30/1 respectively). As separate correct score bets, 1-0 and 2-0 are priced at 11/2 and 17/2.

Given that Espanyol have failed to score on the road this season, no in the both teams to score market clearly has merit and is priced at 4/5.

Finally, Mallorca to win to nil also deserves your attention - priced at 9/5.

Recommendation: Mallorca (evens)


Racing Santander v Almeria, 16:00

Eighteenth placed Racing played well for a few minutes, but quickly went 2-0 down away to Villarreal in their last fixture. The Verdiblancos offered virtually nothing after that and when you also factor in that they lost their last home game to Getafe, logic suggests that you should have serious doubts over backing them today.

However, and though I'm not going with this theory in this game, there will always be people who will go with the "if in doubt back a home win" theory. If you are one of those people, Racing are available at 6/5.

Through striker Uche's third goal in two games, Almeria (9/4) salvaged a 1-1 draw at home to Malaga last time out. That draw means that Juan Manuel Lillo's team have drawn 50% of their matches so far this season.

The draw (9/4) stands a good chance of being the winning choice in the 90 minute market tonight, but I must point out that Almeria won this fixture 2-0 last season (16/1 for a repeat) and could easily win again. It's a tough call but if you don't mind short prices, Almeria or draw (8/13) should remove the need to strain your grey matter any further.

If you're looking for greater value and like to take a chance on correct score bets, my favoured suggestions are 1-0 to Almeria (priced at 15/2) and the 7/1 priced 0-0.

In the over/under goals market, under 2.5 seems the logical choice and can be backed at 8/13. If you bet on the both teams to score market, no (8/11) is my preference as it covers a stalemate along with just one of the teams scoring.

I promised the pre-mentioned Uche (11/2 to score first, 6/4 anytime) an upgrade to the worth a punt suggestion if he scored last week and am a man of my word.

To finish the article and Uche talk, a scorecast bet of the Nigerian scoring and Almeria winning 1-0 could be worth a small punt at 28/1.

Recommendation: Almeria, draw no bet (11/8)

Worth a punt: Uche to score first (11/2)


Athletic Bilbao v Real Zaragoza, 18:00-Sky Sports 1

Dare I say it; Athletic's 2-1 away defeat to Valencia was a game of two halves - Los Che dominant in the first, Bilbao in the second.

However, it was in the second half that, after constantly bombarding the Valencia box with seemingly endless crosses, Athletic (5/6) found their selves 2-0 down when Vicente slotted home in injury time.

Up steps Gabilondo (7/1 to score first, 2/1 anytime) to perfectly curl a free kick past the flat footed Che keeper a minute later. The veteran Bilbao winger's goal may have counted for nothing in terms of earning points for his club, but Athletic were unlucky to lose and Gabilondo now has 2 goals in 2 games.

With 0 goals in 3 La Liga games is Bilbao target man Llorente (7/2 to score first, 10/11 anytime) who, to be fair, was in great form prior to his current slump - I won't back him until he finds the net again in La Liga, but he is worth your consideration for his treble of international goals for Spain in their recent games.

Arguably worth little consideration is backing Zaragoza (10/3) to take all three points tonight as they have yet to win a Primera Liga game this season. They did, however, show great fighting spirit to battle back from being 2-0 down to draw 2-2 at home to Sporting Gijon in their last fixture.

Amazingly, Zaragoza's comeback came about with only ten men at their disposal after Jiri Jarosik's sending off: Former Liverpool, Atletico Madrid and Sporting Lisbon forward Florent Sinama Pongolle (15/2 to score first, 9/4 anytime) scored both goals in the comeback.

Pongolle took his goals very well and if he bags one today, I think that Zaragoza can escape with a shock draw (12/5). However, that's a very big "if" and the logical pre - match bet is a 90 minute Bilbao win at 5/6. As this one is live on Sky TV, I'll opt to bet in-play.


Sporting Gijon v Sevilla, 20:00-Sky Sports 1

As expected, Gregorio Manzano enjoyed a Primera Liga debut win with his Sevilla team when they beat Atletico Madrid 3-1 at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan two weeks ago.

Amongst the goals in that game were Argentine winger Perotti (8/1 to score first, 11/4 anytime), Malian forward Kanoute (11/2 to score first. 6/4 anytime) and Alvaro Negredo (9/2 to score first, 6/5 anytime).

In particular, Negredo's strike was very impressive - curled into the left hand corner after a skilful control and turn - and fans of the Rojiblancos will hope that the former Real Madrid forward can gain some consistency in front of goal this season - he certainly has the talent.

Today's opponents, hosts Sporting (9/4), were 2-0 up against a 10 man Zaragoza in their last fixture, but ended up drawing 2-2 because of the superb finishing of Sinama Pongolle.

There was not much that Sporting could have done about the Pongolle strikes, but it's worth mentioning that Manuel Preciado's boys have twice draw 2-2 after leading 2-0. In the unlikely event that Sporting go 2-0 up today, betting on a 2-2 draw in-play could be worth a small punt - If you want a pre-match punt and buy into this possible theory, Sporting/Draw is a longshot at 14/1.

A Sporting win is certainly not out of the question but, even before Manzano took the reins, Sevilla have been effective away from home with two wins and a loss making up their record.

So far this season, Sporting have compiled a record of one draw, one loss and one defeat at home. Such statistics do not make their matches easy to predict, that's for sure.

I'm not sure about the teams to score market in this game and will instead have a very small punt on Negredo to score first and Sevilla to win 2-0 (priced at 33/1).

The compact Sporting stadium of El Molinon can be intimidating, but I fancy Manzano's winning ways to continue tonight.

Recommendation: Sevilla (6/5)

Enjoy the action and don't forget that you can bet in-play with William Hill Online.



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