Three memorable Manchester United vs Manchester City matches of all time

Old Trafford

Manchester United and Manchester City will square off with each other in November this year. The Red Devils have enjoyed a very successful summer transfer window, having signed Jadon Sancho, Raphael Varane and Cristiano Ronaldo. While Pep Guardiola’s side have added Jack Grealish to their amazing squad that is the envy of the world. Punters can enjoy this match with Bet365 bonus to spice up the sporting experience.

1. Manchester City 6 Manchester United 1 (2011)

Manchester United dominated the Premier League for a long time when Sir Alex Ferguson was at the helm of affairs. Winning the league title was the most normal thing for the Red Devils. And they used to be just as dominant in the derby matches, with their rival Manchester City often having to suffer humiliation.

However, the Abu Dhabi United Group’s takeover in 2008 changed everything. With the support of the wealthy owners, the club could now afford to bring in some of the best talents from around the world. Within a few years, they became a formidable side and started challenging the domestic dominance of their Manchester rivals.

One of their most memorable matches for them after the takeover came at the Theatre of Dreams in October 2011. The Sky Blues stunned the home side with a phenomenal performance. After scoring only one goal in the first half through Mario Balotelli, the Citizens burst into life after the interval and destroyed their opponents in what was one of the most one-sided halves.

Balotelli grabbed his second strike of the match before Sergio Aguero also earned his name on the scoresheet. For a brief period, Manchester United threatened to make a comeback when Darren Fletcher reduced the deficit with a superb goal. However, any hopes for the Red Devils in the game ended when Edin Dzeko added two quick goals to make it an emphatic scoreline. David Silva also contributed a goal in what was one of the biggest victories for City over their rivals in the Premier League era.

2. Manchester City 3 Manchester United 4 (2009)

Manchester City had a very busy summer in 2009. They spent over £100 million to sign some of the hugely talented players, including Carlos Tevez, Emmanuel Adebayor, and Joleon Lescott. However, despite spending such a hefty sum in the transfer market, the Citizens failed to triumph in the Manchester derby.

The two sides provided a thrilling contest, with United scoring thrice only to be pegged back each time before their dramatic victory in stoppage time.

Wayne Rooney grabbed the opener very early in the game for United but their advantage was neutralised soon by Gareth Barry. Darren Fletcher restored the lead for his side before Craig Bellamy popped with the equaliser. The frustration for the home side increased when Fletcher’s second goal was also cancelled out by the Welsh forward. However, they couldn’t contain their happiness when Michael Owen smashed the winning goal for the Red Devils when merely seconds remained in the game.

3. Manchester City 2 Manchester United 3 (2018)

Manchester City were unstoppable during the 2017-18 season. They were ruthlessly destroying one opponent after another and had decided the fate of the Premier League title a long time ago. However, they suffered a defeat at the Etihad when Manchester United visited them in April 2018.

The first half was heavily in the favour of City who struck two goals through Vincent Kompany and Ilkay Gundogan. But Jose Mourinho’s side were not so meek after the interval as they launched a strong comeback in the second half. Paul Pogba fired two quick goals to restore parity before Chris Smalling, one of the tallest soccer players at Manchester United, popped up with the winning goal to make himself an unlikely derby hero.

Who will win Euro 2020?

wembley

As we head towards the last-16 of Euro 2020, there have been no real shocks to date. Of the 24 teams that started out the tournament, only eight were eliminated after the group stage and all of the main pretenders made it safely through to the last-16 where things start to get serious for those remaining teams hopeful of glory this summer.

Of the eight teams eliminated, most would have been predicted by experts prior to the start of the tournament. Hungary, North Macedonia, Scotland, Slovakia, Turkey, Russia Finland and Poland are the unlucky teams to miss out but none would have entered the tournaments with high expectations.

Turkey were perhaps the biggest disappointment. A few pundits had tipped them as dark horses, however, they exited the tournament without a single win and the fifth-worst record in European Championship history. Hungary can consider themselves a little unfortunate. Drawn in the ‘group of death’ alongside Portugal, France and Germany, the Hungarians found themselves just six minutes from a shock upset as they led Germany in their final group game. The Germans equalised late in the game, setting up a last-16 tie with England.

Scotland also had a chance to escape the group, however an opening defeat to the Czechs put them on the back foot and despite a spirited performance against England, they were ultimately knocked out by a much stronger Croatia side. Poland, led by talisman Robert Lewandowski, may have also fancied their chances of escaping the group stages but despite three goals in as many games, Lewandowski couldn’t do enough to get the Poles through.

This then leaves us with a last-16 that includes all of the favourites.

Favourites for Euro 2020

France went into Euro 2020 as the favourites to lift the title and nothing has done much to change their status during the group stage. France came through the group of death comfortably, beating Germany and Hungary before drawing their final game with Portugal to seal top spot in the group. They are led by star striker Kylian Mbappe and whilst he has yet to sparkle in the tournament, you feel his best days are still to come as we get into the nitty gritty of knock out football.

Often a frustrating figure at club side Manchester United, Paul Pogba has been one of the stand out players so far of Euro 2020 and France will rely on him and N’Golo Kante in the middle of the park to dominate in their last-16 game against Switzerland.

Betway Sports has France as favourites for Euro 2020 at 5.00.

Behind France, there is not much to split the leading protagonists. England, despite a tepid performance during the group stage, still find themselves as second-favourites behind France. Betway currently has England at 7.00 to lift the title and this has as much to do with a favourable side of the draw and the fact that all but one of their remaining games would be held on home soil at Wembley if they were to make it to the final.

The group stage left you feeling that England still have plenty in the tank and, like many teams, you sense that they see the knockout stage as the real start of the tournament. They will need to address some attacking deficiencies in the knockout stages if they want to go all the way – they are the worst-ranked team in the last-16 in terms of shots on goal and chances created. At the back, however, they are yet to concede a goal in their opening three games.

England’s opponents in the last-16 will be old rival Germany who Betway has at 8.00 to lift the trophy, also owing to a favourable side of the draw. Germany started poorly with a defeat to France before a top-quality performance against Portugal, beating the defending champions 4-2 and showing some really attacking prowess. They ended the group stage by scraping past Hungary despite twice being behind, securing a draw that was enough to seal second place in the group.

You feel like Germany could be vulnerable at the back. They are yet to keep a clean sheet, however, they do have six goals to their name in three games so it could be a very interesting match against England at Wembley.

Perhaps the strongest team in the group stages were Italy. They sailed through their group, winning all three games despite fielding a much-weakened team in their final group game once qualification had already been secured.

The Italians are on a long unbeaten run in all competitions and confidence is high as they head into a last-16 matchup against Austria. At odds of 8.00, they are definitely worth a punt if they can carry this form into the knockout stage of the tournament.

Spain are the third team currently placed as third favourites to lift the title, despite a poor group stage. Betway also has Spain at 8.00 to lift the title and this is most likely fuelled by their performance in the final group game against Slovakia where they finally showed what they are capable of in a five-nil victory. Prior to that, two draws with Sweden and Poland has left them in danger of missing out on qualification until they turned the form tables upside down with that convincing win against Slovakia.

Best of the rest

Outside of the five favourites to lift the title, the Netherlands, Belgium and Portugal all look like decent bets having all come through the group stages unscathed. All three teams, you feel, are yet to show their full potential and like England, you feel like this is the time when things will really get serious for these three nations.

You can get all the latest EURO 2020 odds from Betway Sports and follow all the action on the official Uefa EURO 2020 website.

Are England False Favourites for the Euros?

england football

england football

On the face of it, there is an obvious case as to why England are favourites for the Euros. Play their cards right and get the results expected, and they are guaranteed to have unofficial home matches at Wembley right through the tournament.

Playing in your own national stadium is obviously a big plus for any team taking part in this special pan-European tournament. Roared on by passionate Three Lions fans, it is not a stretch to imagine England could go all the way.

They start the tournament as 9/2 joint-favourites with France in the outright Euro 2021 betting odds, and that makes them the team to beat. England have a crop of very talented players, so what is there not to like?

Home discomforts and the weight of expectation

Well, firstly there is the pesky stat that no host nation has won the Euros since 1984. Portugal in 2004 and France in 2016 were well-fancied to make home advantage count, and both just came up short losing in the final, so that acts as a cautionary tale.

England players have not always coped well with the weight of expectation and pressure that comes with pulling on the famous Three Lions shirt. In fact, they performed better when hopes were downplayed, reaching the last World Cup semi-finals somewhat under the radar.

Club success comes at cost

The hype is back, however, and that is far from groundless. Three of the four football teams that contested the UEFA European club finals, the Champions League and Europa League, were from the Premier League.

On the downside, that means players from Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United have had an awful lot of football for club and country in the last 12 months. Fatigue may be a factor.

Going into the Euros, Chelsea midfielder Mason Mount – a favourite of England boss Gareth Southgate – has played 64 games for his team and on international duty since September. Marcus Rashford has made 60 appearances in the same period, while Three Lions captain Harry Kane turned out 58 times despite club side Tottenham making an early exit from the Europa League.

While you could argue it is the same for players representing other countries with the European club season crammed into a timeframe that is a month shorter than normal, those exceptional Premier League team performances in continental competitions could come back to haunt England. There is also the matter of fitness for key players in the spine of Southgate’s side.

Key central defender Harry Maguire missed the end of the regular season injured, while Liverpool midfielder Jordan Henderson played just the second half of England’s final warm-up game against Romania. That his only appearance for club or country in over 100 days, so there has to be doubts about his fitness.

How much strength in-depth there is in the heart of defence and central midfield is open to debate. Southgate opted against bringing Southampton skipper James Ward-Prowse into his final 26-man squad, instead giving the last spot to Brighton defender Ben White following an injury to Trent Alexander-Arnold in the penultimate warm-up friendly.

The England manager may be gambling on the sharpness of vice-captain Henderson but he isn’t prepared to chance a lack of cover at the back if Maguire doesn’t recover from ankle ligament damage.

While Southgate’s England go into this summer’s tournament as favourites, it’ll be interesting to see if the players that have been picked can perform and meet the raised expectations, and make their presence known as the team to beat.

 

Are Mbappe And Haaland The Next Messi And Ronaldo?

haaland

haaland

If you are looking for some inspiration to go along with today’s acca bet, look not further than the two hottest players of the moment: Mbappe and Haaland.

When it comes to modern legends of the game, there is no doubting the superiority of Ronaldo and Messi. They are the players to whom everyone looks for greatness. They are the players bettors love. However, Mbappe and Haaland are rising as the stand out stars of their generation. Let’s take a look at what the young players have already accomplished in the their short careers as we ask: are Mbappe and Haaland the next Messi and Ronaldo?

Mbappe

At just 22 years of age, Kylian Mbappe already looks set to be one of the greatest players of the game. His speed and dribbling remind spectators of a young Messi. As only one of two teenagers (the other being Pele) to score in a world cup final, Mbappe has already reached what many consider to be the pinnacle of success when it comes to football. What is more, it was not a surprise to see the youngster on the score sheet, and many bettors will have had his name on their bet slip going into the final. He is a sure bet when it comes to the big wins as he is such an outstanding and consistent performer.

Being given the number 7 shirt at PSG is an honour that many players dream of. It is the shirt number worn by some of the greatest players of all time including Ronaldo when he was at Real Madrid and Manchester United.

If there was ever any doubt over Mbappe’s right to wear the shirt, it was dispelled when he was given the much coveted title of Ligue 1 Player of the Year in the 2018-19 season.

There is a bright future ahead for Mbappe and it is hard to imagine him becoming anything other than a footballing legend as the years pass by.

Haaland

Norway isn’t universally known as a great footballing nation, and whilst it has produced some good players over the years, including John Arne Riise and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, it is fair to say that Erling Haaland is by far their most successful footballing export. Nicknamed ‘The Terminator’, as a young footballer he exploded onto the scene (and betting slips) when he scored nine goals in a single match for the Norway U21s. He has scored 38 goals in 41 appearances since signing for Borussia Dortmund, and he looks set to continue that level of performance as his career progresses.

Not only is he a good striker, but like Messi and Ronaldo, he plays with a confidence and a fearlessness that belies his young age. He believes in himself and backs his abilities, even when he is given a top opponent to battle with. His speed and strength are impressive and it is expected that this will grow even more as he ages.

We can see that he looks set to make bettors money for a long time to come. He will remain a fan and bettor favourite for the foreseeable future.

When looking to build your accas, you would be mad to neglect these two top players.

 

The State Of Manchester United After Their Huge Europa League Final Showdown With Villarreal

ole gunnar

ole gunnar

Photo via: @ManUtd

Manchester United have finally gotten over the Europa league semi-final hump, taking manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to within a single win away from what would be his first bit of silverware as United boss after four previous exits at said stage.

The Old Trafford side had the small matter of playing their final game of the Premier League season, facing Wolverhampton Wanderers on Sunday as part of a mere formality, having already secured their place in next season’s Champions League. The team will travel to Gdansk, Poland, for their Europa League final clash with Villarreal on Wednesday.

Solskjaer’s side booked their place in the final with an 8-5 aggregate win over Italian side AS Roma, keeping up their end of the bargain as it pertained to an all-English final, much like Chelsea and Manchester City are set to embark on next weekend. Arsenal, however, did not fulfill their duties to that end, falling to Villarreal.

The manager will be desperate to put his name in the books as a trophy-winning Man Utd coach but he will have some big decisions to make, particularly as it relates to who will play in goal. Solskjaer is spoilt for choice in that department, with David de Gea and Dean Henderson both great options. Henderson has been getting his fair share of Premier League action but a Manchester source is reporting De Gea will be the one who gets the nod after starting in the last four Europa League games against Granada and Roma.

Team captain Harry Maguire, though, is likely to miss the match. The Englishman suffered ankle ligament damage during a fixture against Aston Villa earlier this month. It was hoped he would be back in time for the final, yet Solksjaer cast doubt on the player’s prospects for the game when questioned about the defender being pictured walking without crutches on Thursday.

“He’s walking but it’s a long way from walking to running so, to be honest, I don’t think we’ll see him in Gdansk, no,” he remarked. “But, as I’ve said so many times, I’m going to give him until Tuesday night, the last training session, and see if he can try to be out there.

Steadily but surely he’s improving but ligaments they take time to heal.

 

 

He’s a very important person in the dressing room and a leader. Before the fans came in, I think you all heard him from the stands. He does still want the team to do well, of course, he’s organising even from the stands, which has been easy because it’s been so quiet.

“So, he’ll come (to Poland), he’ll be in the dressing room, he’ll make sure everyone’s ready for the final.”

United are the favourites to take the trophy home on the sports betting front. The bookies have the English outfit at 5/6 to triumph in the final, with Villarreal at 7/2. Fans could also take advantage of 11/2 odds on Marcus Rashford scoring the first goal of the match. Edinson Cavani is 7/2 to do the same.

As pointed out before, the final will be inconsequential for Manchester United when it comes to securing Champions League qualification for next season. The team locked up second place on the Premier League table with games to spare but that hardly means they could afford to relax as there’s major silverware at stake.

The club should also find out its fate regarding possible punishment for its involvement in a secret plot to break away from UEFA next week. The six English clubs who attempted to form the European Super League earlier this year will meet with the Premier League for talks over the way forward in the coming days.

According to Sky Sports, the clubs (Man Utd, Man City, Chelsea, Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur, and Arsenal) could be facing fines of tens of millions of pounds.

“A source at one of the clubs said they understood that the Premier League was debating penalties ranging from a single one-off fine to a smaller immediate fine combined with a share of next season’s broadcast income,” the report reads.

“An initial proposal from the Premier League made earlier this month is said to have comprised a £15m fine per club and a substantial – albeit suspended – points deduction, the club insider said.”

The aforementioned teams made an attempt to form their own Super League alongside Juventus, AC Milan, Inter Milan, Atletico Madrid, Real Madrid, and Barcelona last month. The announcements were met with fierce fan opposition and England’s clubs all pulled out the very next day.

Madrid, Barcelona, and Juve held out but the Italian club has since shown signs of caving after admitting that the plans are no longer possible.

The impressive rise of soccer in the US

The popularity of soccer in the U.S. is growing, but for many years the sport passed most people by, including the media. Competing against the likes of fan favourites; Football, Baseball and Basketball, it was always going to be a hard sell.
However, things have changed as the big four sports experience a drop in interest, while Major League Soccer saw a 27% rise between 2012-2019. Matchday attendances have also seen huge growth, while the MLS betting market at a US sportsbook like DraftKings can rival those you’d find at a UK betting site specializing in the Premier League.


Viewing figures on the rise

Over the past 20 years viewing figures for soccer games in the U.S. have grown considerably, all be it from a low base. Previous failed attempts to sell game of soccer saw Pele appear for the New York Cosmos in the 1970’s, but this time things are different.

In the 2019 MLS season, ESPN’s English-language coverage saw a two percent increase, boasting an average audience of 246,000 viewers. The match between the Seattle Sounders and Atlanta United reached an impressive peak of 462,000.

Average viewership of the English Premier League saw a 73% increase in the U.S. rising from 262,697 to 457,00 in just ten years. Further highlighting the growing interest throughout the states, not just in the MLS but in the sport of soccer itself.

Why is soccer becoming more popular?

Soccer is the most popular sport in the world, with the Men’s FIFA World Cup attracting billions of viewers worldwide. But why is it only taking off in the U.S. now?

International Stars

Much like the days of Pele and Beckenbauer, superstar players attract attention as people want to see the world’s best players up close and personal. A wealth of big names have been attracted in recent years, putting the spotlight on the MLS and increasing interest in the game.

David Beckham, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Kaka, Thierry Henry, Wayne Rooney and David Villa have all graced the MLS and raised the image of the league. While Gonzalo Higuain and French World Wup winner Blaise Matuidi, who currently play for Inter Miami, are part of the new generation.

The MLS is now seen as an attractive proposition for these world class talents, thanks to full stadiums and a wider fan base. Which explains why rumours linking Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo to the league continue to circulate.

Not only have these great players helped raise awareness of soccer, but they have also improved the level of the game. The MLS is now an entertaining, quality product full of exciting, talented players.

The success of women’s soccer

The U.S. women are the most successful international women’s soccer team in the world. They have won four World Cups, in 1991, 1999, 2015 and 2019 and four Olympic Golds in 1996, 2004, 2008 and 2012.

Players like Megan Rapinoe, Alex Morgan, Mia Hamm and Hope Solo are household names in America. Their long and continued success, has helped push soccer into the spotlight and, more importantly, keep it there.

The women’s soccer success has played a huge part in driving up the sports participation amongst kids, especially girls. Many of whom feel that Football, Basketball and Baseball do not have any relevance to them.

American Players Overseas

The number of American’s playing soccer in the top European leagues has grown substantially. This influx of players has helped create more interest back home and further raised interest in the game.

Many of these players are playing at the highest level for some of the best clubs in the world. Zack Steffen at Manchester City, Sergiño Dest at Barcelona and Weston McKennie for Juventus are great examples.

In January 2019, Christian Pulisic was signed by Chelsea from Borussia Dortmund for $73 million. A world record for an American player.

Increased Investment

In 2009, MLS was made up of only 15 teams. Since then, it has nearly doubled in size in a decade, with aims to reach at least 30.

MLS Expansion Schedule

  • 2010 (16 teams): Philadelphia Union
  • 2011 (18 teams): Portland Timbers, Vancouver Whitecaps
  • 2012 (19 teams): Montreal Impact
  • 2015 (20 teams): NYCFC, Orlando City
  • 2017 (22 teams): Atlanta United, Minnesota United
  • 2018 (23 teams): LAFC
  • 2019 (24 teams): FC Cincinnati
  • 2020 (26 teams): Inter Miami CF, Nashville SC
  • 2021 (27 teams): Austin FC
  • 2022 (29 teams): St. Louis, Sacramento

In order to grow the leagues popularity, investment has been a key driver. But it buying a team does not come cheap.

In 2013 the owners of New York City FC agreed to pay a record $100 million fee in order to join the MLS. That record was soon surpassed by the owners of FC Cincinnati and Nashville SC, which each paid $150 million.

The MLS recently announced that the owners of the 28th and 29th teams to join, will each pay a record $200 million entrance fee. While it’s rumoured that the 30th expansion team will be expected to pay a whopping $325 million.

Former England international and L.A, Galaxy midfielder David Beckham, recently became co-owner of new expansion team Inter Miami. Austin FC, Charlotte, St. Louis and Sacramento are expected to join the MLS in the next few years.

Creating a wider national reach through expansion, is seen as essential to securing television rights, as MLS aims to become one of the top leagues in the world.

Can MLS compete with Europe?

The English Premier League not only attracts stars from around the world, but also million-dollar investment. Several clubs, including Liverpool, are owned by Billionaire Americans who know a good thing when they see one.

However, MLS is not only growing, but its attracting and creating more and more stars. With viewing figures and attendances rising, there is every reason to be optimistic about its future.

As the league continues its ambitious expansion plans, basketball, baseball, football and the big European leagues, have every reason to be worried.

Players Potentially on Leeds Radar for the 2021/22 Season?

It has been a good first season back in the top flight and one in which we have surprised a number of the top teams and in some cases embarrassed many of the more established top-flight clubs. We have the owners and our genius manager to thank for that. We can now start planning for next season with a decent transfer kitty reportedly being available.

With a bit of money to spend, the conversation naturally progresses to who we may sign. Apparently, we can expect up to five new arrivals in the summer. We have been linked to a number of players but there are a few that really could prove to be interesting signings.

Adama Traore (Wolves)

Heavily linked in recent days, Adama Traore is a player that the Leeds hierarchy has identified as a possible addition. Physical, pacey, and with insane dribbling ability, Traore really could help with the transition into attack. The Spanish international has not had the best of seasons at Wolves, but it is clear from his previous season that he has what it takes to go to the very top in this division. Working under Beisla could really take his career to the next level.

Leeds United Odds for Next Season

For our first season back in the Premier League, there can be few complaints. A solid season of consolidation will probably end in a mid-table position which most would have accepted at the start of the campaign. This means we can now build and push on next time around. As for our odds next season, a lot will depend on whether Beisla extends his contract.

To keep an eye on Premier League odds, sites such as freebets.co.uk are a good option. They keep track of the best bookmakers offering free bets, bookmaker offers, and welcome offers. You will also find all the best odds for the Premier League, Championship and all major European leagues. All in one place, you no longer have to compare the best UK free bets, enhanced odds offers, and all other bonus offers yourself.

Andre Silva (Frankfurt)

In terms of converting chances, Leeds should be looking to sign Andre Silva. The Portugal international has racked up 31 goals in 46 games across the past two seasons at Eintracht Frankfurt. The striker bags close to 1 in 2 for his country too. The only issue would be the fee, as he has just signed a three-year deal to stay at the club. However, having featured in the German, Italian, and Spanish top leagues so far in his career, he may want to test himself against the best in the English Premier League.

Tyler Adams (RB Leipzig)

Just 22, Tyler Adams is a promising wide player that can play either side of the pitch as a fullback or winger. An American international, the player is already valued at around €20 million after forcing himself further into the first-team plans at RB Leipzig across the past three seasons. However, he is still not a guaranteed starter and could do with a fresh start somewhere else. This is the type of player that could flourish under Beisla and his style of play would suit him in the Premier League.

Lets Get Excited for Next Season

The one fear we had with going up was that as fans, we might not be able to actually witness ourselves in the top flight. Thankfully, it is incredibly unlikely we will go down which means we should be allowed back int he stadiums for next season. That alongside the potential signings we could make means that we have plenty to get excited about.

Norwich City Are Top of the League – So Why Aren’t They Favourites for the Title?

ncfc

ncfc

Norwich City have been sitting pretty at the top of the league since Week 12 when they jumped from the play-off places to the top of the tree. Week 29 is looming large, which means the East Anglian outfit is now used to being the leader of one of the most profitable divisions in world football.

On the surface, everything looks rosy. However, delve under the surface and a different picture emerges. Currently, it’s Brentford that are the bookies’ favourites to take the title and gain the first automatic promotion spot at 10/11.

The Bees are second in the league and have never been in first position all year, so why does it seem as if the Canaries will play second fiddle at the end of the season?

The Chances Are Drying Up  

At the beginning of the season, Norwich couldn’t stop scoring, and clinical striker Teemu Pukki quickly shot to the top of the goal-scoring charts. However, the omens don’t appear to be too kind to Norwich at the moment, especially considering Pukki only has 11 goals all season. In comparison, Brentford’s main man, Ivan Toney, has 22.

There is also a lack of assists because Emiliano Buendía is the only Norwich player in the Championship’s top 18 goal creators. Reading and Brentford, two of Norwich’s biggest challengers for EFL silverware, both have three. As a result, the odds on who will win the EFL Championship in 2021 have moved in the Bee’s favour, with Norwich ranked at 2/1 to win the division outright. Brentford’s odds are 10/11, even Swansea are thought to have a good opportunity at 9/2.

If Norwich’s attack doesn’t click soon, those figures might change again, leaving them stranded in the play-off positions.

They Aren’t Competing with the Big Teams  

A successful season doesn’t revolve around a handful of fixtures. Still, taking points from a close rival is essential as it provides more breathing space. Concerning Norwich, the side hasn’t performed well against the top six since the start of the Championship season on 12th September.

For example, they got beat away from home against Bournemouth, who are now sixth. They drew with Brentford, the side that could take their mantle at the top of the league. And Watford beat them on Boxing Day.

When you combine these results with poor performances in recent games against Middlesbrough and Millwall, you can see why there isn’t much confidence among the bookmakers.

A Game in Hand  

Even worse is the fact that both Swansea and Brentford have a game-in-hand. Norwich have played 28 games, leaving them on 55 points. The Swans and the Bees are on 53 and 54 points after 27 games respectively.

With the form both are in – Swansea recently beat Norwich 2-0 at home – it’s no coincidence that the odds for a top-two finish have plummeted. As of February 10th, the current leaders are only 4/7 to secure automatic promotion. Steve Cooper’s men, on the other hand, keep shortening, and you can now get 6/4 for Swansea City to avoid the hell that is the play-offs.

It seems that a perfect storm of a lack of goals and creativity, Norwich’s poor run against good sides, and the fact that their two main rivals have a game-in-hand means the fate of the title is nowhere near certain.

 

Birmingham City: Latest News and Updates

bcfc

bcfc

Let’s see what has been happening at Birmingham City as far as football is concerned. Whether it is the EPL, Championship, or even the Women’s League, there is always action worth reporting week in, week out. Here is some of the news related to Birmingham City that we’ve been tracking so far.

Steven Gerrard set to sell former Birmingham City player Greg Stewart

Greg Stewart was a part of the Birmingham City team in 2016. After playing about 21 games in the Championship, he was on loan to two other clubs before signing a two-year contract with Rangers F.C.

This season; he has made just two appearances for Birmingham City. In a bid to bring the Scottish Premiership title back to Ibrox, Rangers coach Stephen Gerrard plans to sell some players to bring in new legs.

One of those players that would have to leave is Greg Stewart, as he seems not to be a part of Gerrard’s plans.

Players Birmingham City should consider signing during January transfer window

After playing 18 games this season, Birmingham City have managed just 22 points. Fortunately, they also have a decent goal-difference tally on the table. These opinions suggest that their defence is relatively stable, but they only find it difficult to score goals.

Aitor Karanka is looking forward to augmenting his team this January to push them into the table’s top half. Well, here are some players that the coach could sign:

● Matthew Sorinola from MK Doris, a 19-year-old left-back

● Troy Deeney from Watford, a 32-year-old forward

● Emile Smith-Rowe from Arsenal, a 20-year-old attacking-midfielder

● Mallik Wilks from Hull City, a 21-year-old winger

● Josh Murphy from Cardiff City, a 25-year-old winger

Preview of Cardiff City vs. Birmingham City on Wednesday

Blues’ next Championship game is a faceoff against the Bluebirds at Cardiff city stadium. Cardiff City lost their last match, a South Wales derby against Swansea City. With a man short, the Cardiff team conceded two goals from Jamal Lowe.

Birmingham City also lost to Watford in their last match as Troy Deeney could not score an almost guaranteed goal. So, it will boil down to who is prepared to win the most.

In their previous 18 meetings, Birmingham City has only won four times. The odds are mostly in favour of Cardiff City. However, Cardiff City would be missing the services of key players like Lee Tomlin, Jordi Osei-Tutu (due to injury), and Joe Ralls (due to suspension).

Placing Bets on Championship Football

Championship betting markets are very popular. Some bookmakers offer bonuses that come in the form of free bets. Free bets are usually valid for Championship games and are quite common because this league is so unpredictable and there are generally long odds. You also have the opportunity to place in-play bets.

A few sports books that cover the Championship market also have some games streamed live on their website. You can combine watching the game and placing bets as the action unfolds using the in-play betting systems.

Other betting features that are popular in Championship games include ‘cash out’ which allows betting punters to cash out if they bet on a certain scoreline and the game reaches that score before it ends – the option to cash out for a lesser payout can prevent the bet being wiped out if another team scores.

Preview of match between Everton and Birmingham City in FA WSL

The Barclays F.A. Women’s Super League would hit the screens once again in a game between Birmingham City and Everton.

Will Everton be able to break their two months winless run since October? Some bettors have connected this winless streak to the absence of top strikers like Valérie Gauvin and Simone Magill.

On the other hand, will Birmingham City’s female team be able to capitalize on Kirk’s determination to win this match? In their last encounter in the F.A. Cup semi finals, the Toffees defeated Birmingham City by 3-0.

The Birmingham side has many great players, but they have been struggling with the top teams this season. With 5 points behind Everton on the table, Birmingham City W.F.C. will be looking forward to changing their usual case of losing to top teams.

Fans rant over undeserving penalty awarded against Birmingham City

Birmingham City was on a fine run until last weekend when they lost their match against Watford. The referee awarded a penalty for a tackle by Kristian Pedersen, which many fans and pundits felt was inaccurate. This has also brought back the debate of having Video Assistant Referees in the Championship.

 

Will England ever win a World Cup again?

England Flag

You’d need to go back 54 years now to remember the one and only time that England were crowned champions of the footballing world. A 4-2 win over rivals West Germany saw the World Cup coming back to the home of football.

It was the great football commentator Kenneth Wolstenholme who brought us those words that will forever be in the minds of English football fans: “They think it’s all over. It is now!”. It could have easily been a different story with England going a goal down in the first 12 minutes, and a bet on soccer live odds may well have been best placed on West Germany at this point.

With Qatar 2022 only a year away, England may have the chance to finally repeat their past glory. It has been a long and bumpy road, but could 2022 be the turning point for the three lions?

 Italia ‘90

England have come close to reaching the final again since 1966. It was the cruel semi-final of Italia ’90 that saw them missing out on penalties. With England being the stronger team for much of the first 90 minutes, and into extra time, the team were knocked out on penalties by Germany.

With the score fixed at 1-1, Lineker, Beardsley, and Platt comfortably put away England’s first three penalties. Perhaps most remembered though were the next two where Stuart Pearce and Chris Waddle failed to find the back of the net. With Gazza in tears, England were out and had to settle for 4th place. This seemed to be the start of something big for England, but the next world cup brought the nation’s hopes crashing back down to earth.

USA 1994

With the nation still on a high from England’s performance during Italia ’90, hopes were high for the England team of 1994. A chance to build on what had been delivered 4 years earlier, Graham Taylor’s men were poised to go at least one step further and to reach the World Cup final. As the record shows, that was not to be

Drawn in what should have been a relatively easy qualifying group, England failed to make the grade. With defeats at the hands of Norway and the Netherlands, England managed to come away third in the table, above Poland, Turkey, and San Marino. Disappointing and embarrassing for a team that had reached the semi-finals in the previous campaign.

2018 and new hope

Being led by Gareth Southgate, who had experienced the highs and lows as a player himself, England started their 2018 campaign as they meant to go on. The team shone as they breezed into the final 16: it finally felt that this was England’s time and that the World Cup would be returning home.

As is often the case with England, the campaign in Russia fell short with the team being knocked out in the semi-finals. This time it was a goal in extra time from Croatia that ended England’s dream. However, what England fans had to take away from this World Cup run was that Southgate had nurtured and developed new talent: this talent will be set to mature as England enter the 2022 tournament.

Qatar 2022

Drawn in Group I, England have Poland, Hungary, Albania, Andorra, and San Marino to face on the road to qualification. Where Poland may pose a slight risk, this England team should breeze through qualification.

With Harry Kane maturing as a captain and still being regarded as one of the best strikers in the world, England enters the 2022 campaign with a sense of hope all over again. This hope isn’t misplaced: Southgate has worked wonders with the England team and focused on bringing through fresh talent. If Russia 2018 was a rehearsal, Qatar 2022 is set to be the real thing: the year that England lifts the World Cup and bring football home.

 

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