Sports Picks For Sale - Amedeus Mastrangelo

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Biography

The handicapper formerly known as “Soccer Authority,” Amedeus Mastrangelo is now applying his skill to all the North American sports.

Active since:  2021

Location:  Dundas, ON, Canada

Amedeus Mastrangelo first launched his handicapping business, and gained fame under the brand, "The Soccer Authority.”  But Amedeus has expanded his service to now release selections on all major North American sports. 

While he's best known for his prowess on the Soccer pitch, Amedeus has been heavily wagering on all sports for years and plays just about everything, including sides, totals, favorites, underdogs, against the spread, alternative spreads, first half, second half, player props, and futures. The bottom line is, if Mastrangelo can see an edge in any way shape or form, then he's going to take advantage.

Mastrangelo believes that you should set a unit size and stick to it. No matter what. He also suggests that you wager all of his picks for the same amount - the exceptions being an extra half unit or unit on his 10* selections.

Volume will vary as Amedeus will only ever place a wager on a pick in which he deems to have found good value (+EV), however generally when there is a full card of games you can expect 4 or more premium picks.

MLS Western Conference Futures (2024 Season)

Thursday, Feb 15, 2024

The MLS is BACK for 2024 with the start of the season kicking off between Inter Miami and Real Salt Lake City on Wednesday, February 21, and the rest of the league kicking off matchday 1 between the following Saturday and Sunday. Columbus Crew are the defending champions of the MLS Cup from last season, but there is still an entire regular season to be played this year before playoffs are anywhere near so it is time to see who has the best chance of taking home the number 1 seed in the Western Conference this season.  Western Conference League Winner Los Angeles FC +300: LA FC is coming into the 2024 season as the team with the best chance at winning the Western Conference this year, according to the oddsmakers. LA FC finished last season with 52 points from a 14-10-10 record which landed them in 3rd place of the Western Conference and 8th place overall in the MLS. LA FC has been a dominant team in the MLS over the last few years with multiple MLS Cups and they even made it back to the final last year, losing to Columbus. They have been on the decline though as seen last season in their regular season performance and now the big story for them this season is how they are going to replace their star forward Carlos Vela who left the club in the winter. The Carlos Vela departure signifies the end of a dominant era for LA FC in the MLS and this very well could be the end of what has been considered a dynasty club in the MLS the past few years. Vela is not the only player to have departed after last season as they also lost key pieces on defense and in the midfield as well. Kellyn Acosta has been a key piece in their midfield that is gone now and they also lost some key defenders in Diego Palacios who moved on to Corinthians in Brasil as well as losing Giorgio Chiellini who retired. They still have a lot of talent but this team is nothing like it used to be and this season is going to see a lot of those players that were bench depth last year now being thrusted into a starting role. This is also a team that has become bored in the MLS with their recent dominance as was evident in their performance last year after losing in the CONCACAF Champions League final. LA FC lost a lot of talent from last season and they may be a great team still, but this is going to be a big transitioning year for them with new players in the lineup and they are simply not the best team in the Western Conference this season. With all the ongoing changes in LA, there is no real value at this price for LA FC to win the Western Conference this season.  Seattle Sounders FC +500: Seattle is coming into the 2024 season as the next team on the list with the best chance at winning the Western Conference this year, according to the oddsmakers. Seattle finished last season with 53 points from a 14-11-9 record which landed them in 2nd place of the Western Conference and 7th place overall in the MLS. Seattle has had some up and down years in the MLS over the last decade but overall, they have been a very dominant club in the MLS in recent years. They had a great season last year and made yet another playoff run, eventually losing 1-0 to LA FC who went on to the finals and lost, but they also had the best defense in the league last year along with Nashville as Seattle only allowed 32 goals in their 34 regular season matches. Their attack was not as potent as some of the other strong teams in the MLS which did hold them back a bit, but they have injected some youth into their attack for this season while also retaining the starters they had last year. They are going to be a much deeper team on the attack this season and they were also able to bring back all of their key starters on defense and in the midfield. Their performance last year was just a stepping stone to this season as they had a down year in 2022 but have built the squad back much stronger over the last 2 years. They leaned on their great defense a lot last season to get results but that defense will continue to perform into this year as their attack improves around them as well which makes them the most dangerous team in the Western Conference coming into this season. Seattle has been a very decorated team in the MLS in recent years and they now have the defense as well as the youth in their squad to be a real threat this season. They also sense the blood in the water with LA FC on the decline and they will be pushing to take back the league with a dominant regular season campaign this year. There is a lot of value in Seattle at this price to win the Western Conference this season.  Houston Dynamo +650: Houston is coming into the 2024 season as the next team on the list with the best chance at winning the Western Conference this year, according to the oddsmakers. Houston finished last season with 51 points from a 14-9-11 record which landed them in 4th place of the Western Conference and 9th place overall in the MLS. Houston was able to have such a great regular season last year due to their home dominance as they had the best home record in the Western Conference, going 11-4-2 there while scoring 36 goals in their 17 matches and allowing just 11 goals. On the other hand, they were one of the worst away teams in the Western Conference as they were 3-5-9, scoring just 15 goals in those 17 matches while allowing 27 goals. Houston’s away form is going to be a big problem when it comes to winning the Western Conference as they are too inconsistent away from home to collect enough points to keep them in this race. They were not very active in the winter transfer window either despite losing a key piece in Corey Baird who was 2nd on the team in goals scored last season with 9. Houston does not have a very talented lineup either and they do not match up well against the better teams in the MLS. Their home dominance will likely continue this season and will be enough to get them a playoff spot, but they are too inconsistent away from home to be any threat towards winning the Western Conference this season. There is no real value in Houston at this price.  Los Angeles Galaxy +700: LA Galaxy is coming into the 2024 season as the next team on the list with the best chance at winning the Western Conference this year, according to the oddsmakers. LA Galaxy finished last season with 36 points from an 8-12-14 record which landed them in 13th place in the Western Conference and 26th place overall in the MLS. The Galaxy have been a struggling team in the MLS over the last few seasons after having so many years of dominance in the league. They were one of the worst teams in the MLS last season and they have not really done much to improve their team anymore for this season. They were an active team in the winter transfer window but did not acquire any players who are going to make an immediate impact in the squad. They are going to show some improvement this season and they have the potential to be a playoff team in one of the lower seeds, but this team still needs time to show great improvement and they are not going to come out of the gate strong enough to keep themselves in this Western Conference race. There is no value in LA Galaxy at this price to win the Western Conference this season.  St Louis City SC +1000: St Louis is coming into the 2024 season as the next team on the list with the best chance at winning the Western Conference this year, according to the oddsmakers. St Louis finished last season with 56 points from a 17-5-12 record which landed them in 1st place of the Western Conference and 4th place overall in the MLS. They had a very impressive season in the MLS last year considering how it was their 1st ever season in the MLS as an expansion team, but this is going to be a much tougher season for them. As an expansion team, St Louis does not have a very deep squad and they are going to have a much tougher time with extra matches now as they did qualify for CONCACAF Champions League. They deserve an honorable mention due to their performance in the league last season, but they will not be able to replicate that in their 2nd season, especially having an extra competition to play in now. There is no value in St Louis at this price to win the Western Conference this season.  RecommendationThe MLS has been improving a lot and there are many teams this season that can be a threat to the MLS Cup with the playoff system used in the league. The regular season is a completely different animal though that highlights the consistency and the elite talent of certain teams that can keep up that kind of performance for an entire season. Any team can get hot for a few weeks once in the playoffs, but it takes a truly talented team from top to bottom to win the respective conferences in the MLS regular season. The Eastern Conference looks like it is going to be the stronger conference this season, leaving the Western Conference wide open with the strength of competition in the West, but there is only 1 team on this list that looks like it is going to be a dominant team in the league this year. Seattle at +500 has the most value to win the Western Conference this season as they are coming off of a strong season already and they are only going to improve this year as the stronger teams in the West around them start to decline. 

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MLS Eastern Conference Futures (2024 Season)

Thursday, Feb 15, 2024

The MLS is BACK for 2024 with the start of the season kicking off between Inter Miami and Real Salt Lake City on Wednesday, February 21, and the rest of the league kicking off matchday 1 between the following Saturday and Sunday. Columbus Crew are the defending champions of the MLS Cup from last season, but there is still an entire regular season to be played this year before playoffs are anywhere near so it is time to see who has the best chance of taking home the number 1 seed in the Eastern Conference this season.  Eastern Conference League Winner Inter Miami CF +137: Inter Miami is coming into the 2024 season as the team with the best chance at winning the Eastern Conference this year, according to the oddsmakers. Inter Miami finished last season with 34 points from a 9-7-18 record which landed them in 14th place of the Eastern Conference and 27th place overall in the MLS. Despite the poor performance in the regular season, last year was huge for Inter Miami as a club since they acquired Lionel Messi midway through the season and he began transforming this team on the pitch. By the time Messi had gotten to the team, they were already one of the worst clubs in the MLS so they were unable to really make a push for the playoffs and do damage there, but they showed their talent as they did go on to win the Leagues Cup and even made a very deep run in the US Open Cup. Lionel Messi was not the only player they acquired though as the club went out to sign a few other players that Messi is familiar playing with, and now they have also added Luis Suarez to the team who has a very long history playing with Messi at an elite level in Europe. This Inter Miami team is only going to get stronger this season now that they have had a few months playing with Messi last season and now he will be with the team from the beginning of the season as well so they have the opportunity to dominate the league this year. Inter Miami is going to be the best team in the Eastern Conference this season and will also be one of the best teams in the MLS during the regular season so all the value is with them to win the Eastern Conference this season.  Columbus Crew +600: Columbus is coming into the 2024 season as the next team on the list with the best chance at winning the Eastern Conference this year, according to the oddsmakers. Columbus finished last season with 57 points from a 16-9-9 record which landed them in 3rd place of the Eastern Conference and 3rd place overall in the MLS. Columbus was not able to stay in the Eastern Conference race with Cincinnati running away with it for most of the season, but Columbus did their damage in the playoffs as they are the defending MLS Cup champions. One thing that helped Columbus a lot last season was that they had the strongest attack in the Eastern Conference, scoring 67 goals in their 34 matches of the regular season. They also made a lot of good moves in the summer transfer window by bringing in 2 center-backs to stabilize their defense and the addition of Diego Rossi to their attack was a good move as well. Columbus has lost some depth from last season, but overall, they are returning a lot of players from this starting lineup last year and they are going to be a dangerous team in the MLS once again. They are not the best choice to win the Eastern Conference this season but they do have some value as a potential dark horse if they can keep up with Miami in this Eastern Conference Title race and they have the best chance to beat out Miami. FC Cincinnati +700: Cincinnati is coming into the 2024 season as the next team on the list with the best chance at winning the Eastern Conference this year, according to the oddsmakers. Cincinnati finished last season with 69 points from a 20-9-5 record which landed them in 1st place of the Eastern Conference and 1st place overall in the MLS. Cincinnati was a well balanced team last season between their defense and attack, but that is not going to be the case this season. They were able to retain a lot of their attacking players but they did lose some key pieces in the midfield and on defense as well. They were a very active team in the winter transfer window as they brought in some replacements for those players lost, but they are still going to need some time at the beginning of the season to get into rhythm with their newly acquired players, especially since they lost key pieces in the starting XI. Yerson Mosquera was not only a key piece in this defense, but he was also one of the best defenders on Cincinnati last season so that is going to be a huge loss which could set them back in the Eastern Conference Title race. They also lost some key starters in the midfield and on the attack with Junior Moreno and Brandon Vasquez leaving the club so they are going to struggle in their transition trying to create scoring chances. Cincinnati has been building a very good team over the last few years now and they are still going to be a threat in the MLS this season, but they are definitely going to take a step back this year from their dominance last season and a slower start could affect their ability to stay in the Eastern Conference race. There is not a lot of value in Cincinnati to win the Eastern Conference this season at this price.  Philadelphia Union +800: Philadelphia is coming into the 2024 season as the next team on the list with the best chance at winning the Eastern Conference this year, according to the oddsmakers. Philadelphia finished last season with 55 points from a 15-10-9 record which landed them in 4th place of the Eastern Conference and 5th place overall in the MLS. They have been a very active team in the winter transfer window as they have added a lot of depth on defense and in their midfield, but they are also returning their entire starting XI from last season as well. Philadelphia has been a dominant team in the MLS over the last few years now and they even won the Eastern Conference back in 2022 as they were tied for the best record in the MLS with LA FC. Philadelphia still has a very good team with a lot of talent and they continue to add more depth which will be important, but they have not been the same dominant team they were 2 years ago and a lot of that has to do with their defense. They had the best defense in the MLS in the 2022 season, allowing just 26 goals in their 34 regular season matches, but that drastically changed last season as they allowed 41 goals in their 34 regular season matches, allowing 15 goals more than the previous year. The squad has not changed much at key positions since then either so a lot of that has just been aging and fatigue in the squad. Philadelphia is still going to have a very good team in the Eastern Conference this season but until they make some real changes at key positions that is going to improve performance in that area of the field, this team will be no different than they were last season as they continue to gradually decline. Philadelphia also has the playoff pedigree as well so winning the Eastern Conference is not as big of a deal to them if they fall behind more later in the season as long as they get into the playoffs. Philadelphia does not have a lot of value at this price to win the Eastern Conference with their current squad.  RecommendationThe MLS has been improving a lot and there are many teams this season that can be a threat to the MLS Cup with the playoff system used in the league. The regular season is a completely different animal though that highlights the consistency and the elite talent of certain teams that can keep up that kind of performance for an entire season. Any team can get hot for a few weeks once in the playoffs, but it takes a truly talented team from top to bottom to win the respective conferences in the MLS regular season. Columbus at +600 does have some value as a dark horse here considering that they are the MLS Cup defending champions and were so strong during the regular season last year as well, but this race for the Eastern Conference this season has had it’s fate sealed ever since Messi came into the league last year and with the way the team has transformed around him, the era of Inter Miami and Lionel Messi dominance in the MLS has arrived. Inter Miami at +137 to win the Eastern Conference regular season is the best option here.

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Champions League Futures 2023/24 (Knockout Rounds)

Wednesday, Jan 31, 2024

The Champions League returns on February 13 with the 1st leg of the Round of 16 kicking off. The group stage had some obvious results with some of the bigger favorites and there were also some big surprises with certain clubs exiting the competition, but now it is down to the final 16 clubs in the knockout stages and this is where the true contenders tend to pull through. With the final 16 teams decided now, it is time to see who these true contenders are compared to the pretenders left in the competition.  To Win Outright Manchester City +187: Man City is the team with the best chance to win the competition according to the oddsmakers. Man City are the defending champions of the Champions League from last season as well as being the Treble winners and the Club World Champions after winning the Club World Cup back in December. They have the best team in the world right now with a lot of talent in their squad, but their depth is definitely lacking from last season with the players they lost in the summer transfer window. They still have a very strong team but repeating is always a difficult challenge, especially when splitting their focus between different competitions as well as not having the same hunger to win after winning the previous year. Manchester City is a very good team that is still one of the best in the competition but their depth could become an issue deeper in the competition as they will also be focused on winning the Premier League Title again. There is still some value at this price for the best team in the world right now, but there are going to be a lot more obstacles for them this time around and there are better options with more value to win this competition this year. Bayern Munich +400: Bayern Munich is the next team on the list with the best chance at winning this competition according to the oddsmakers. Bayern Munich has had their struggles in their domestic league this season as they currently sit in 2nd place, 2 points behind Leverkusen, but they still have a very impressive 15-2-2 record in the league this season. This is also a competition they are very focused on winning this season as they have not won the Champions League Title in a few years now and acquiring Harry Kane from Tottenham in the Summer Transfer Window was a big step taken towards winning this title. They were very impressive in the group stage as they topped their group with a 5-1-0 record and the addition of Kane was a much needed piece in their attack as they never truly replaced the striker they lost in Lewandowski when he departed for Barcelona. Now Bayern is a real contender in this competition as their attack has been flowing much better and generating more scoring chances, but their biggest issue in this competition has always been defense which is something they have also corrected. The club hired Tuchel as their manager and his defensive system has improved this team a lot as they have only allowed 18 goals in their 19 matches this season which is the 2nd best defense in the Bundesliga and they allowed 6 goals in the Champions League group stage which was among the top 5 for goals allowed. Between their new flowing attack and their much better defense, Bayern Munich is finally a true contender to win this competition and they have a lot of value at this price. Real Madrid +550: Real Madrid is the next team on the list with the best chance at winning this competition according to the oddsmakers. Real Madrid has been a dominant team in Europe over the last few years and they were the last champions of the Champions League prior to Manchester City winning it last season. They won La Liga last season but fizzled out of the Champions League in the semi-finals. Once again, they are having a great season in La Liga as they currently sit in 2nd place, just 1 point behind the leading Girona, and they also had a great group stage as they finished at the top of their group at 6-0-0. Real Madrid has had a bigger issue on their hands this season though as they acquired a lot of young talented players in the Summer Transfer Window and they have been a great addition to the team, but they have also struggled at times with these players in the lineup and have struggled to score goals with a lot of their wins this season coming from goals that came very late in their matches, even coming in stoppage time at the death of matches. They still have a lot of their experienced players on the team but they are also getting much older and they have had to deal with injuries to core players in their lineup as well. Real Madrid still has a very good team that is going to improve a lot with their young talent, but this team has been off this season and they are just not ready right now to compete for this title with some of the better teams in Europe. Real Madrid is not the best option to win this competition this year. Arsenal +550: Arsenal is the next team on the list with the best chance at winning this competition according to the oddsmakers. Arsenal is back in the Champions League after years thanks to a very good season last year which almost saw them take home the Premier League Title but had to settle for 2nd place instead. They are once again having a great season in the Premier League as they are in the top 4 and fighting for the title, but they have not been the same team they were last season and a lot of that has to do with the extra matches they are playing now. Arsenal had a great season in the Premier League last year but they fizzled out in the Europa League as they were unable to maintain focus on both competitions. They added to their depth in the summer time and ended up topping their group in the group stage with a 4-1-1 record, but their form in the Premier League began to dip as they had to deal with the condensed schedule of being in different competitions in December. They have been starting to play much better in January as they have had less competitions to worry about, but this is not a team that can make a deep run in the Champions League when focusing on the Premier League Title as well. As Arsenal gets deeper into the competition, they will begin to fade as they do not have the depth or the experience to deal with wear that will come late in the season and against much better teams. There is no real value in Arsenal to win this competition this year as they do not have the team to do so.  Paris Saint-Germain +1200: PSG is the next team on the list with the best chance at winning this competition according to the oddsmakers. PSG is having a good season in Ligue 1 as they are leading the league with a 6 point lead over 2nd place. They also acquired a lot of good young talent in the Summer Transfer Window to replace some key pieces that left the team as well as preparing for a likely future without Kylian Mbappe next season. PSG is usually one of the bigger favorites to win this competition every year and they have underperformed every year as well. This might be their last chance to make a deep run with their star player likely to leave in the summer, but this is also a team that underperformed once again in the group stage this year as they finished in 2nd place behind Dortmund with a 2-2-2 record. PSG has a team with a lot of good players that always seems to dominate a weaker French league but they also continue to underperform in this competition as they just are not good enough to compete at a high level with the best teams in Europe. There is not a lot of value in PSG at this price as they are not a true contender. Barcelona +1600: Barcelona is the next team on the list with the best chance at winning this competition according to the oddsmakers. Barcelona has been a very interesting team over the last 2 seasons with the changes they have gone through. They signed a lot of players in the Summer Transfer Window 2 years ago which saw them go on to win the La Liga Title last season, but they also fizzled out of the Champions League in the group stage which was a huge failure. They also could not afford all of the players they signed which led to a massive mess that made them unable to improve the team in this transfer window as they had to sell a lot of those players they signed and pay off their debt. Now they have a solid core group of players for this year, but they have not performed well as they currently sit in 4th place of La Liga. They did have a much better Champions League campaign as they were more focused on this competition and topped their group with a 4-0-2 record. They also had a much weaker group though and their defense has taken a big step back from last year as well. A big reason why they were able to win the La Liga Title last year was their great defense as they rarely allowed goals in their matches. That has not been the case this season though as they have been conceding a lot more goals and that is going to get them into trouble the deeper they go as they will come against teams with much better defense. Barcelona also has a very difficult Round of 16 matchup against a Napoli team that has the talent to eliminate them so the road is going to be very hard for Barcelona right from the start of the knockouts. Barcelona is another team that has just been off this season and they still need more time to improve their squad if they want to be a contender in Europe. There is no value in this price for Barcelona to win this competition. Inter Milan +1800: Inter Milan is the next team on the list with the best chance at winning this competition according to the oddsmakers. Inter Milan has been having a very good season this year as they are leading the Serie A and have the best team in Italy this year with the talent they have. They finished in 2nd place of their group with a 3-3-0 record but this is still a team that went to the Champions League final last year and lost in a very tight match with Man City. Inter Milan got a taste of the Champions League final last season and there is no doubt that this competition is a big focus for them as well as winning the Serie A Title, but they also have the talent and depth to focus on both competitions. They also have the experience of making a deep run from last year and the pain of losing a very close match in the finals which will drive their hunger to perform as best as they can. Inter Milan has also maintained their great form in 4 different competitions all season, but now they do not have the cups to worry about so they are going to have full focus on winning these 2 titles. Inter Milan has the defense and the talent in their squad with the experience to make a deep run in this competition and they are going to have the hunger as well which is what has been driving their dominant performance in matches this season. They can compete with the best clubs in Europe as they showed last year and they have the same core team with some improvements as well. Inter Milan is a real contender to win this competition and they are a huge dark horse at this price. There is a lot of value in Inter Milan to win this competition.  RecommendationThere are a lot of good teams in this competition as these are the best teams in Europe right now and any team that can get through the group stage of this competition should be viewed as one of the best in Europe. There can only be 1 winner of this competition though and as good as every team may be, some are much better than others or simply do not have the depth to make a deep run late in the season in a competition like this. The teams that were left off this list are still very good but do not have the best chance at beating the odds to win the Champions League Title this year. There is always going to be a dominant powerhouse team that makes the finals and Bayern Munich has the talent and depth to be that team this season with some great value at +400. There is also the possibility of a dark horse team making it to the finals though as we saw last year with Inter Milan and they might just be that team again with the way they have improved from last year and the experience of that deep run they now have on their side. Bayern Munich at +400 is the team with the best value to win this competition going into the Round of 16 but Inter Milan at +1800 also has a lot of value as a dark horse.

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Europa League Futures 2023/24 (Knockout Rounds)

Wednesday, Jan 31, 2024

The Europa League returns on February 15 with the 1st leg of the play-off games kicking off to decide which 2nd place teams from the group stage and which drop down teams from the Champions League will be advancing to the Round of 16. The Europa League can be a lot more difficult to predict at the start of the group stage as the team that goes on to win might not even be in the competition yet. Now that the group stage has ended, no more teams can be added to the competition after this play-off round so there is a much better idea as to who can go on to win this competition now. It is time to see which teams are the real contenders to win the Europa League Title this season. To Win Outright Liverpool +225: Liverpool is the team with the best chance to win the competition according to the oddsmakers. Liverpool ended up in the Europa League this season with a 5th place finish in the Premier League after a lackluster season last year, but they have improved a lot this year. They are currently leading the Premier League as they are having a great season and they have also booked their ticket to the Round of 16 already by topping their group in the group stage. They improved their team in the Summer Transfer Window by bringing in Alexis Mac Allister to stabilize their midfield and he has done a great job fixing the flow of their attack as they never truly replaced Sadio Mane which brought them a lot of problems last season. Their defense was also a big issue last season but they fixed that as well as they now have the best defense in the Premier League this year. Liverpool is by far the best team left in this competition with their talent as they have been performing at a Champions League level all season and that will show when they go up against weaker teams in this competition. They are also going to have some motivation with Klopp announcing that he will be leaving the club at the end of the season so the team will be pushing to win as many titles as they can this year. The only thing that could hold them back in this competition is the fact that they will be more focused on reclaiming the Premier League Title this season, but they still have both the talent and the depth to make a deep run in this competition regardless. There is value in Liverpool to win this competition at this price since they do have the best team left in the competition.  Bayer Leverkusen +550: Bayer Leverkusen is the next team on the list with the best chance at winning this competition according to the oddsmakers. Leverkusen has been having a very impressive season as they are currently leading the Bundesliga with a 15-4-0 record and they also topped their group in the group stage of this competition with a 6-0-0 record. They have played in 25 matches this season between Bundesliga and the Europa League without losing a single match yet. They also have the best defense in the Bundesliga as they have allowed 14 goals in their 19 league matches, and that is a trend they continued in the Europa League group stage as they only allowed 3 goals in their 6 matches. A big reason for their success this season was the hiring of Xabi Alonso as manager as he has turned this entire club around. Leverkusen is going to be a big threat in Europe as long as Alonso is still at the helm and right now they are the biggest threat to Liverpool in this competition since they have actually been in better form all season in both the Europa League and their domestic league. They also have a lot of value at this price to win this competition as they are the closest team to standing in Liverpool’s way and they are a true contender as they continue to show.  AC Milan +1000: AC Milan is the next team on the list with the best chance at winning this competition according to the oddsmakers. AC Milan has been having a good season this year as they are currently sitting in 3rd place of the Serie A, but they have shown time and time again that they are always a bridesmaid and never a bride. Last season, they were in the top 4 but way out of the title race with Napoli running away. They also made a deep run in the Champions League but eventually fizzled out right before making it to the finals. They have had a similar story the last few years and once again this season, they are sitting in 3rd place in the title race but still way out of it as they are 8 points behind the leaders. They also took a step back in the Champions League as they made a very deep run last year but failed to get out of the group stage this year. Now they have the added challenge of having to play in a play-off game before booking their spot in the Round of 16 for the Europa League. AC Milan has a lot of good talent in their squad but they also had to replace some key pieces they lost in the Summer Transfer Window and at the end of the day, this is a team that is not a real contender to win this competition as they always get close but find a way to hurt themselves when they need to show up most. They do not have the defense to win this competition either as that has been an issue for them in the Serie A this season and was also a reason for their departure from the Champions League with 8 goals allowed in their 6 matches of the group stage there. AC Milan is not a real contender to win this competition and there is no real value for them at this price.  Brighton & Hove Albion +1200: Brighton is the next team on the list with the best chance at winning this competition according to the oddsmakers. Brighton has not been having a great season this year as they got off to a very good start in the Premier League but they are currently sitting in 8th place now as the key pieces they lost in the Summer Transfer Window are finally starting to catch up to them. Brighton still has a very good team but they are not as good as they were last year and a lot of that has to do with the loss of some very good midfield talent in Caicedo and Mac Allister who are no longer with the club. Brighton did manage to top their group in the group stage with a 4-1-1 record so they have already booked their ticket right to the Round of 16, but they have still been a very inconsistent team this year. They have also struggled away from home which is going to make their away matches that much more difficult, especially since they have had a huge issue on defense as well. They had a dominant 4-1-1 performance in the group stage yet they still allowed 5 goals in their 6 matches and they have been much worse in the Premier League with 37 goals allowed in their 22 league matches. Brighton has the talent to make a deep run here as they do have a very potent attack still, but when push comes to shove, their defense will let them down deeper in the competition and they also do not have the depth to last while also pushing to get back into a European spot for next year in the Premier League. Brighton is not a real contender to win this competition and has no real value at this price.  West Ham United +1200: West Ham is the next team on the list with the best chance at winning this competition according to the oddsmakers. West Ham has been having a good season this year as they currently sit in 6th place of the Premier League table and have been climbing the table in recent weeks. This was a team that was awful in the league last season as they were very close to getting relegated at the end of the season, but they also underperformed in the Premier League with the talent they had as they also went on to win the Europa Conference League last year which is how they got their bid into this competition. Now they are having a much better season in the Premier League and they were also very good in the group stage as well. They topped their group with a 5-0-1 record and have already booked their spot in the Round of 16. West Ham will be trying to maintain their spot in the Premier League so they can be back in European competition next year, but they also know they are not a top 4 team in the Premier League so this will be a competition they are focused on winning as they are the champions from last year’s Conference League and winning the Europa League would also give them a bid to the Champions League for next season. West Ham has the motivation and the pedigree to win this competition with the run they made last season. They do not have the best chance to win this competition with the stronger clubs still left in it along with their struggles against Liverpool in the league, but at this price they definitely have value as a dark horse.  Roma +1600: Roma is the next team on the list with the best chance at winning this competition according to the oddsmakers. Roma has been having a good season in the Serie A as they are currently sitting in 5th place, but they are also going through some turmoil as well. This team has had high hopes every season for the last few years yet they have struggled to even crack the top 4 and now they have finally sacked their manager Jose Mourinho. They have played better since the sacking with a new found boost in the lineup but they still lack the talent and depth to be a real contender in the Europa League right now. Similar to AC Milan, Roma is a team that always has high hopes and tends to underperform. Even when they have come close like last season as Roma did go to the Europa League final, they still found a way to lose. Roma does not have the talent and depth to make a deep run in this competition right now and they will be more focused on improving their performance in the Serie A to end the season. They also finished in 2nd place of their group in the group stage which means they have the added challenge of facing a Champions League drop down team before booking their ticket to the Round of 16, and they have a very tough matchup against a very good Feyenoord team that has experience making deep runs in Europe as well. Roma is not a true contender to win this competition and does not have any value at this price.  RecommendationThere are a lot of good teams left in the Europa League right now but all of the paths to the finals are very treacherous with 2 Champions League caliber teams standing in the way. Liverpool is the best team in England right now, which could change toward the end of the season, but they are still playing at a Champions League level regardless of if they win the Premier League Title or not, the same way Leverkusen has been playing at a Champions League level all season as well. These are the two teams to beat in the competition right now so there is a lot of value in Liverpool at +225 as they do have the best team left, but considering how they were +350 to start the competition which was discussed in the pre-group stage futures segment, there is more value with Leverkusen at +550 to win the competition as they are the 1 team left that could really give Liverpool some trouble with their defensive play. Either way, Liverpool at +225 and Leverkusen at +550 are the 2 teams with the most value to win this competition this season. 

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Italy Serie A Futures (2023/24 Season Updated)

Sunday, Dec 31, 2023

The Winter transfer window is approaching in January which also marks the midway point in the season for Serie A. This is the time when teams take a real good look at themselves and decide whether they need to buy players to improve and make a push for top of the table or if it is better to sell players and accept their spot in the middle of the pack. Either way, the 2nd half of the season can look very different than the 1st half so now it is time to see which teams are shaping up to be real title contenders and which ones are just pretenders. To Win Outright Inter Milan -400: Inter Milan is coming into the 2nd half of the season as the favorite to win the title according to the oddsmakers. They are currently sitting in 1st place in the Serie A table with 45 points through 18 matches this season. They have the best defense in the league right now with only 8 goals allowed in their 18 matches and their attack also leads the league with 42 goals. They had a very good season last year as they finished in 3rd place in the table and also made a very deep run in Champions League, appearing in the final against Man City. Inter Milan clearly has the best squad in Italy right now and they have been a dominant force in the league all season, but they also have just a 2 point lead over the 2nd place team and their season is going to get a lot tougher as it goes on. Inter is definitely focused on winning the league title this season but after going to the final last year, winning Champions League and having success in that competition will also be a focus for them. Inter actually lost quite a bit of their depth in the summer transfer window though and they are going to need more depth if they want to make a deep run in UCL while also competing for the Serie A Title. Inter is clearly one of the best teams in Italy this year but with Champions League also on their plate, this is a ridiculous price for them when they do not even have a large lead in the table and there is also a very strong challenger right on their tail. There is no value in Inter Milan to win the title at this price.  Juventus +333: Juventus is coming into the 2nd half of the season as the next team on the list to win the title according to the oddsmakers. Juventus is currently sitting in 2nd place in the Serie A table with 43 points through 18 matches this season. They also have a very good defense that is one of the best in the league as they have allowed just 11 goals in their 18 matches this year, ranking 2nd in Serie A behind Inter Milan. Their attack has not been as good but they still rank in the top 6 of Serie A with 27 goals scored this season. Juventus was a very interesting team last season as they finished in 7th place in the table but were also given a 10 point deduction which would have had them in 3rd place for points, tied with Inter Milan. They did finish in a Conference League spot but part of their punishment included a ban from European competition this season. It seemed harsh at the time, but this ban has been a blessing in disguise as they do not have any extra competitions to play in this year and can now focus solely on winning the Serie A Title which is something they have not in years now. Juventus also has plans to make a splash in the winter transfer window and bring in some players to boost their attack which is much needed. With most of the distractions out of the way now and plans to improve the team in January, Juventus should be the favorite to win the title this year considering the talent in their squad as well as the lack of extra competitions late in the season. There is a lot of value in Juventus winning the title this season at this price.  AC Milan +2500: AC Milan is coming into the 2nd half of the season as the next team on the list to win the title according to the oddsmakers. AC Milan is currently sitting in 3rd place in the Serie A table with 36 points from 18 matches this season. AC Milan is a team that has struggled to keep up in the title race the last few years. They have 1 Title over the last 5 years and they are usually a team that has been finishing in the top 4, but their defense continues to be a problem area that has led to some bad results. Their potent attack has been keeping them above water but they need to make some real improvements to their defense before they can be considered as a title contender. Last season, the Serie A Title race got away from everyone very quickly as Napoli was so dominant and led the whole season with a large margin. AC Milan is already 9 points behind the leaders and they also managed to salvage their year in Europe by dropping down to Europa League so they are going to have a winnable competition that will be distracting them late in the season. AC Milan is not one of the top teams in Italy right now and the way that it looks, it is going to be a 2 horse race for the title this season as the top 2 continue to pull away from everyone else. AC Milan has no value at this price to win the Serie A Title this season.  Fiorentina +15000: Fiorentina is coming into the 2nd half of the season as the next team on the list to win the title according to the oddsmakers. Fiorentina is currently sitting in 4th place in the Serie A table with 33 points through 18 matches this season. They are already 12 points behind the leaders and they have been a team that has struggled to even make it into the top 4 in recent years. They deserve an honorable mention here since they have added some very good talent to improve their squad this season, but they do not have a real chance at winning the title. Fiorentina also went to the finals of the Conference League last season, losing in the finals, but they are once again in the competition and will be focused on winning that. Fiorentina is more likely to finish outside of the top 4 come the end of the season than winning the title. There is no value in Fiorentina at this price. RecommendationAccording to the books, the Serie A Title race has pretty much been settled with Inter Milan being the huge -400 favorite, but in reality, Juventus has just as good a chance as Inter Milan does to win the title this season. Juventus has a quality squad with a defense that can rival the current league leaders and they also have the added bonus of no extra matches and competitions to worry about while Inter Milan will be looking to make another deep run in Champions League which will end up stretching their squad thin by the end of the season. Juventus is focused on winning the Serie A Title this season after falling out of favor the last few years and especially after the punishments they received from the federation last season which kept them from having a successful season being in Europe this year as well. All the value is with Juventus at this price as this title race is far from over in Italy. Juventus to win the title at +333 has the best value here. 

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England Premier League Futures (2023/24 Season Updated)

Saturday, Dec 30, 2023

The Winter transfer window is approaching in January which also marks the midway point in the season for the Premier League. This is the time when teams take a real good look at themselves and decide whether they need to buy players to improve and make a push for top of the table or if it is better to sell players and accept their spot in the middle of the pack. Either way, the 2nd half of the Premier League can look very different than the 1st half so now it is time to see which teams are shaping up to be real title contenders and which ones are just pretenders. To Win Outright Manchester City -138: Man City is coming into the 2nd half of the season as the favorite to win the title according to the oddsmakers. Man City are the defending champions of the Premier League Title as well as being the Treble Champions last year and they were also just crowned champions of the world after winning the Club World Cup. They are currently sitting in 3rd place in the Premier League table with 40 points through 19 matches this season. Recently they have been surging into January between all the competitions they have been playing in, but all of these extra competitions can really take a toll later on in the season. Man City actually lost quite a bit of talent and depth in the summer transfer window and they do not have many plans to make a splash in the winter transfer window either. They still have a very good squad with some of the best talent in the Premier League, but their depth has been running thin for a while and with another deep run into Champions League on the horizon, Man City is going to start taking a hit in some of these competitions as we get deeper into the season. Manchester City has a very good squad but there are plenty of good quality squads in the Premier League this season and at this current price, there is no real value in Man City winning the title this year as it is going to be a very tough road for them to repeat.  Liverpool +275: Liverpool is coming into the 2nd half of the season as the next team on the list to win the title according to the oddsmakers. Liverpool is currently sitting in 1st place in the Premier League table with 42 points through 19 matches. Liverpool has had a very potent attack going back to last season as they have scored a lot of goals, but a big reason for their success this season has been the improvement on defense. Their defense was awful last season as they conceded a lot of goals and were very sloppy but they did not do much in the summer transfer window to improve their defense either. Instead, they focused on bringing in midfielders to stabilize the mess they had last season and it has paid off as it not only fixed the flow of their attack and their ability to generate more meaningful scoring chances, but it also fixed their effort on defense with more organization. Liverpool also missed out on Champions League last season due to their performance in the league. They did qualify for Europa League but that will give them a bit of an advantage in the title race since they will be facing much lesser competition on their path to the finals if they can get there. They also have a lot of quality depth to get them through both competitions late in the season and the Premier League Title is definitely a big point of focus for Liverpool this season. Liverpool is in a great position right now at the top of the table going into the January transfer window and they have the talent in their squad to hold onto that lead in the 2nd half of the year. There is a lot of value in Liverpool to win the title at this price.  Arsenal +400: Arsenal is coming into the 2nd half of the season as the next team on the list to win the title according to the oddsmakers. Arsenal is currently sitting in 4th place in the Premier League table with 40 points from 19 matches this season. They were a team last season that was fighting for the Premier League Title and leading the table every step of the way until a very late collapse in the final weeks of the season. They have one of the better defenses in the league this season as they are one of the few teams averaging under 1 goal allowed per match this season. Their defense has carried them a long way this season but their attack has been letting them down. They have missed quite a few opportunities this season in matches where they were the dominant team but failed to capitalize on scoring chances. That is something that is going to come back to bite them later in the season, especially the deeper they go in Champions League. Last season was huge for Arsenal, not only because they finally put together a good squad that is worthy of competing for the title after so many years of darkness, but last season also marked their return to Champions League this year. They performed very well in the Champions League group stage as well, but they are not a team that has a lot of good quality depth and the deeper they go into Champions League, the more their title hopes will take a hit this season. There is some value in Arsenal winning the title at this price since they do have a very good quality squad, but with Champions League matches as well as their attacking struggles this season, Arsenal will likely fall short of the Premier League Title once again. Aston Villa +2500: Aston Villa is coming into the 2nd half of the season as the next team on the list to win the title according to the oddsmakers. Aston Villa is currently sitting in 2nd place of the Premier League table with 42 points through 20 matches this season. Aston Villa was a team that was really on the rise near the end of last season as they were surging up the table, finishing in a Conference League spot, and they also have one of the better home records in the Premier League over the last calendar year. Unai Emery has been a big reason for their turnaround as they have done nothing but improve since he took over the team last season. They also have plans to bring in more players in the winter transfer window and strengthen key areas of the team that have been struggling. Their away form in the league has not been nearly as good but these moves could help improve that defense which is what they need to make a title push. They already have one of the strongest attacks in the Premier League as well as they are number 2 in the league for goals scored, 2 goals less than Man City who lead the league. Aston Villa also has an advantage playing in Conference League as they will not be facing very strong teams deeper in the competition which will be helpful late in the season when making a title push simultaneously. Aston Villa has a very good quality squad that is only going to get better as the season goes on and they have shown over the last calendar year that they are a real threat in the Premier League under Unai Emery. There is a lot of value in Aston Villa winning the title at this price as they have the squad to do so and are in the position right now, they are the dark horse to win it all this year. Tottenham +5000: Tottenham is coming into the 2nd half of the season as the next team on the list to win the title according to the oddsmakers. Tottenham is currently sitting in 5th place in the Premier League with 36 points through 19 matches this season. They have had a lot of changes this season with the departure of Harry Kane in the summer and the hiring of their new manager Ange Postecoglou. Tottenham showed a lot of promise at the start of the season as Postecoglou really galvanized this attack and they were the best in the league at one point early on. They ended up hitting a rough stretch during the season which took them out of the title race and they have not been able to recover from that rough stretch as a lot of their key players have picked up injuries. Losing James Madison was a big loss to the team and they are slowly starting to find their groove again without these key pieces, but it may be too late for them this year. When healthy, this Tottenham squad has the potential to be the best team in the Premier League and they are going to be a very dangerous threat in the title race next season, but as for this season, there are just too many good teams in the league around them to make up for the points they have lost and they will not be able to keep pace in this season’s title race. There is no real value in Tottenham at this price.  RecommendationsThere are plenty of good teams in the Premier League this season as there is a lot more parity at the top of the table than there has been the last few years. January is a great time for these teams to evaluate where they are at and make a push for the title but as of right now, there are 2 very clear choices who have the most value in winning the title this season. Liverpool at +275 has a lot of value considering the squad they have and where they are in the table going into the 2nd half of the season while Aston Villa at +2500 is a great dark horse to win with their squad and their position in the table as well. Liverpool at +275 and Aston Villa at +2500 are the best options at this point in the season for teams to lift the Premier League Title this year.

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Coppa Italia Futures 2023/24

Thursday, Nov 30, 2023

The Coppa Italia started in August with 44 teams across all of the Italian leagues in the field of play and now it is entering the Round of 16 with only 16 clubs left in the competition. Inter Milan is the B2B defending champion of the competition but Juventus holds the most titles with 14 Coppa Italias won. Now it is time to see which of these 16 teams left has the best chance of making the run to the finals and lifting the cup.  To Win Outright Inter Milan +350: Inter Milan is coming into this Round of 16 listed as the team with the best odds of winning the competition. Inter Milan is the B2B defending champion of the competition, winning it the last 2 straight years, and they are also tied for 2nd on the all-time list with 9 cup wins as well as 6 times as runner up. They have had one of the best squads in Italy for years now and they are coming off of another great season, currently leading the league table this year as well. Inter Milan did not win the league title last year but they won the Coppa Italia and they also went to the finals of Champions League as well. They did come away with the Coppa Italia at least but with the way Napoli ran away with the league title last season, the league is going to be a big focus for Inter this season. Inter Milan is also going to be focused on doing well in Champions League since they went to the finals last year. This Inter Milan team is very talented with a lot of depth in their squad but it is very tough to win every competition in the same year and considering how they have won this one the last 2 straight years while coming so close in the others, they will not be as focused on winning the Coppa Italia a 3rd straight time when the league title and Champions League title are more important to them. Inter Milan does have a very good chance of getting to the finals due to their path in the competition but they will still have to face some of the top clubs in Italy on the way and could stumble with their focus being elsewhere. Inter Milan is still a good choice but not the best choice to win the cup this year. Napoli +350: Napoli is coming into this Round of 16 listed as another team with the best odds of winning the competition. Napoli is coming off of a very good season last year as they won the league title with a massive points lead over 2nd place but they have not been playing at the same level this year. They are still a top team in Italy with a lot of talent and depth in their squad, but they have definitely taken a step back from their amazing run last season. They also fizzled out in Champions League last season so that is going to be a big focus for them this year as well as trying to repeat winning the league title. They have not had much success in this competition either as they have only won 6 Coppa Italias which is 6th on the all-time list and the last time they won it was in the 2019/20 season which is also their only Coppa Italia win in the last 9 years. Napoli also has a much tougher path to the finals as they will have to play the winner of Juventus vs Salernitana in the next round and possibly play Lazio or Roma on their way to the finals if they can get through. This is not a competition Napoli is usually focused on and they are not going to be focused this year with such a good squad that is capable of performing well in both the league and Champions League. Napoli will not be the team lifting the cup this season.  Juventus +400: Juventus is coming into this Round of 16 listed as the team with the next best odds of winning the competition. Juventus did not have a good season last year with the scandals surrounding them that led to their points deduction but they were actually a good enough team to play in Europe despite the points deduction as they had the 2nd best record in Italy but the punishments have kept them out this season. They still have a very good team this year though and they have shown it in their matches as they are in 2nd place in the table and are pushing to win the league title with a chip on their shoulder after last year. They also have one of the best defenses in Italy with the number of goals they have been conceding and that alone will take them very deep into this competition. They also have a major advantage now since their punishments have kept them out of European competition this season so they have no extra matches to play in and will be very focused on winning this competition. Juventus has also had a lot of success in this competition over the years as they have won the most Coppa Italias with 14 wins and 7 times being the runner up. They have actually been in the finals in 3 of the last 5 years and they have won this competition 5 times in the last 9 years while being the runner up twice, making more appearances in the finals over the last decade than any other team. Juventus has extra motivation to win everything they can this year after the way things went for them last season and they have the squad depth and talent to perform well in the league while also being very focused on this competition. Juventus has the best chance of winning this competition this season, it is their year.  AC Milan +600: AC Milan is coming into this Round of 16 listed as the team with the next best odds of winning the competition. AC Milan has a very good team in Italy as they have been a top 4 team competing for the title over the last few years and they have also had success in Champions League as well. AC Milan is also the kind of team that tends to perform well in every competition but will be lucky if they can even win 1 of them. They always seem to fizzle out in the knockouts of Champions League despite being focused on the competition and they have only won the league title once over the last 5 years. Even playing in this competition, they have only won the Coppa Italia 5 times, being the runner up 9 different times, and the last time they were even in the finals was the 2017/18 season which they lost. AC Milan has a very good team this year with a lot of talent but they also lost some key players in the transfer window that they did not find proper replacements for and they will also be more focused on winning the league title as well as Champions League before this competition. AC Milan does not have a good chance of winning this competition this year. Roma +900: Roma is coming into this Round of 16 listed as the team with the next best odds of winning the competition. Roma is coming off of a bad season as they did not finish in the top 4 and they have been slipping in the league under Jose Mourinho. Finishing in the top 4 has always been a focus for Roma as well as performing well in European competition. They went to the finals of Europa League last season which they lost but they will be focused to get back there since they have had a lot of success in that competition over the recent years. Italy is filled with a lot of talented teams now and it is becoming very difficult for Roma to compete for a top 4 spot with the talent they have. Roma has a good team but they have always been more of a Europa League caliber team compared to a Champions League caliber team. Nevertheless, getting into the top 4 has always been a focus for them and it will continue to be this season as they try to get back to Champions League while also trying to win Europa League. They do not have the talent in their depth to juggle 3 different competitions though and this will be the one they are the least focused on. They were also eliminated by Cremonese last season, who they are playing in this round, and they have not had success in the Coppa Italia for years either. Roma does not have a strong enough squad to make the run in this competition and win it.  Lazio +1000: Lazio is coming into this Round of 16 listed as the team with the next best odds of winning the competition. Lazio has been a very good team in Italy for years but they are also a team that has been hovering between Champions League and Europa League with so many good teams in Italy over the years. They performed very well last season though to get into Champions League this year and they will definitely be focused on doing well in that competition as well as in league play. Lazio has not been as good in their league matches this season though and a big reason is some of the midfield depth they lost in the transfer window. They still have a very good team but right now they have been struggling to win matches in Serie A as they try to juggle their Champions League matches in between as well. Lazio has lost some of their talent from last year and they just do not have the squad to go deep in this competition this season with more important competitions to focus on. Lazio will not be a threat to win the Coppa Italia this season.  Rest of the Field: The top 6 teams to win this competition have been covered and there are still plenty of good teams left in this competition, but none of them past these 6 has much of a chance to win. Atalanta at +1200 is not a great choice since Atalanta is playing in Europe this season and also trying to perform better in Serie A to get back in a Champions League spot which they were holding down for years until recently. Fiorentina at +1800 has value considering how they were the runner up last season, but they also have the same issue as AC Milan where they perform well in all their competitions but always come up short in each. The fact of the matter is, the Coppa Italia has been dominated by the same 4 teams over the last 15 years with no teams other than Inter Milan, Juventus, Napoli, and Lazio winning it, and this season is not going to be any different with the strength of those teams that do focus on this competition.  RecommendationThere are plenty of good teams in Italy this season but schedules and motivation always has to be questioned in these cup tournaments. There is a clear option for the team with the best chance of winning it all as Juventus at +400 has the most value considering their lack of having to juggle European competition this year. Inter Milan at +350 is also a close 2nd for value since they are the defending champions the last 2 years and have the more favorable side of the bracket which means they could end up being the team Juventus plays in the finals. The Coppa Italia finals this season will most likely be between Inter Milan and Juventus so Juventus at +400 is the best option but Inter Milan at +350 is a good 2nd choice since bettors can come away with profit either way if both teams make it to the finals. 

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EFL (Carabao) Cup Futures 2023/24

Thursday, Nov 30, 2023

The Carabao Cup has reached the quarter-finals with only 8 teams left in the competition. The field started with 92 teams across all of the different English leagues but now it is down to the final 8 and it is time to see who has the best chance of taking home the cup this season with focus and motivation in mind. To Win Outright Liverpool +187: Liverpool is coming into the quarter-finals as the favorite to win the competition according to the books. Liverpool has the best squad out of all the teams left in the competition and they made a lot of good moves in the transfer window to improve their team as they have been competing for the title this season. They are also the team with the most EFL Cups in history as they have won this competition 9 times and have also been the runner up 4 times, the last time they won this competition being 2 seasons ago in 2022. Liverpool also has a very favorable road to the finals as they are playing against West Ham in this round and if they get past them, they will be playing the winner of Everton vs Fulham to get to the finals. Liverpool is playing in European competition this year which could be a distraction but they also have a lot of depth and are playing against much weaker teams in Europa League. The only thing hurting their chances is the way their defense has been playing this season which has been a big problem going back to last year but even with those problems, they have the strongest squad in the competition and are one of the better choices to take home the cup.  Chelsea +333: Chelsea is coming into the quarter-finals as the team listed with the next best odds to win the competition according to the books. Chelsea has not had a great start to their season after the disaster season they had last year but they have hired a good manager for the team and fixed a lot of problems by getting rid of a lot of the players they signed. They have been starting to catch fire in their Premier League matches recently and they do have an advantage since they are not playing in any European competitions this year so they have only been playing 1 match per week and will be more focused on this competition as they have the depth as well. They also have a very favorable path to the finals since they are getting Newcastle in this round who has a laundry list of injuries to their depth and are already struggling to juggle their squad between Premier League matches and Champions League matches. If Chelsea manages to get by Newcastle in this round, then they will be playing the winner of Port Vale vs Middlesbrough to get to the finals, neither of those teams even being in the Premier League. Chelsea also has a good history in this competition as they are 5th on the all-time list with 5 cups and 4 times being runner up, the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th place teams on that list all being knocked out of the competition already as well. Chelsea has a very good chance to get to the finals with their current path there and they also have the added advantage of only having league matches to focus on. Chelsea is the best choice to win this competition this year with all things being considered. Newcastle +350: Newcastle is coming into the quarter-finals as the team listed with the next best odds to win the competition according to the books. Newcastle has a very good team this season as they were one of the better teams in the Premier League last year but with their current situation, this is not a competition they are going to be focused on winning. Newcastle has not performed as well as last year in the Premier League with the extra matches of European competition. They are currently outside the top 4 in the league and they have not performed well in Champions League either. They have still been putting more focus toward league matches and Champions League matches though as they are trying to keep the dream alive of playing in Europe. They are also in an awful situation here as the injuries have been piling up for Newcastle and they have the talent in their starting XI to be a great team, but they also have no depth left as of right now with all of the injuries and they cannot afford to keep their starting lineup in with more important matches coming up in the league and Europe. Newcastle also has to face Chelsea in this round and it is very likely that they do not get by since they will have to rotate players and put out a much weaker squad. The FA Cup has not started yet either so there is still silverware for Newcastle to win and with their current situation, this is simply not a competition they are going to be focused on winning. Newcastle does not have a very good chance to take home the cup here.  Everton +800: Everton is coming into the quarter-finals as the team listed with the next best odds to win the competition according to the books. Everton has not been playing well this season as they were very close to being relegated last year and they started this season playing in the same form. Recently they have come around though as they have been in much better form overall and have been playing very well against some of the better teams in the Premier League as well. They have also been playing well in this competition as they knocked out Aston Villa in one of the rounds but they still have a very tough road ahead of them. Everton is playing against Fulham in this round who is no pushover and even if they do get by, they will have to play the winner of Liverpool vs West Ham in the next round which either team will be a tough out for them. They will also have a tough challenge in the finals if they make it there and with the squad struggling to stay above the relegation zone in the league, they have bigger things to worry about than this competition. They do not have the depth to take them that far either and eventually they will run into a stronger team that knocks them out. Everton does not have a great chance of winning this competition.  West Ham +900: West Ham is coming into the quarter-finals as the team listed with the next best odds to win the competition according to the books. West Ham is a team that has a lot of talent in their squad but they have not performed to their full potential over the last year. Last season, they were very close to the relegation zone despite being in the Europa Conference League and winning the entire competition. They have a very similar team this season but did lose a bit of talent in the transfer window and it has shown in their matches. They have still been struggling in their Premier League matches all season and because they won the Conference League last season, they are also playing in Europa League this year which is still extra matches for them to play. They are already thinner on the depth side from the transfer window and right now they have been able to manage getting to this point while also juggling league matches with Europa League matches. West Ham has not been dominating Europa League the way they dominated the Conference League though and as they get deeper into the competition, they will not be able to juggle the 3 competitions with the current depth they have. West Ham is also more focused on winning matches in Europa League so when push comes to shove, they will be more focused on Europa League matches over this competition and it will show in their lineups. West Ham does not have much of a chance to win this cup this season.  Fulham +1200: Fulham is coming into the quarter-finals as the team listed with the next best odds to win the competition according to the books. Fulham was a middle of the table team last season and they lost a lot of key talent in the transfer window with their striker leaving the club. Their attack has not been as fluid this season which has led to goal droughts at times and they do not have a lot of depth in their squad either. They have had a pretty easy path to this round as well as they beat Tottenham at the beginning of the season in their 1st cup match played and have not faced another Premier League team since then. Fulham has also been a very inconsistent team in the Premier League despite not having any extra competitions to worry about besides this one. Their path is only going to get much harder as well and it start in this round as they take on the red hot Everton and if they manage to get past them, they will likely have to play much stronger competition in the semis and finals. This is a competition that they will likely be focused on winning and it will reflect in their lineup as well, but even with a full lineup in these matches, they do not have the talent or depth in their squad as some of the other teams they might face and eventually they will run into a much stronger team that will knock them out. Fulham could end up making a run as a dark horse but they will likely not be the team that lifts the trophy this season.  Middlesbrough +1600, Port Vale +25000: Middlesbrough and Port Vale are the final 2 teams in the competition and they will get an honorable mention here but realistically, neither team has any chance of winning this competition. Neither of these teams play in the Premier League and the finals of this competition has been dominated by Premier League teams in recent years. Neither team has the depth nor the talent to make it to the finals and they also play each other in this round so 1 of these teams will be getting knocked out anyway before facing the winner of Chelsea vs Newcastle in the next round. Disregard these two sides as neither team has a chance to win.  RecommendationAlthough Fulham could end up making a run to the finals as a dark horse out of sheer focus on the competition, they still do not have the depth and talent as some of these other teams they will have to run into. Liverpool does have the best squad with the most depth to make a run to the finals and since they are playing against weaker competition in Europa League, they will be focused on getting back to the finals since they did win this competition 2 years ago. Chelsea also has the talent and depth to make a run though with the more favorable path to the finals as well and there is a very good chance that the finals will be Liverpool vs Chelsea which would be a rematch of the 2022 finals which Liverpool won. Liverpool at +187 and Chelsea at +333 are the best bets to make for teams to win this competition as those are the 2 teams with the best chance and both teams could end up in the finals leaving bettors with profit no matter who wins it. 

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Europa Conference League Futures (2023/24 Season)

Monday, Oct 30, 2023

The Europa Conference League is already through the first 3 matchdays of the group stage and now at the halfway point it is looking a lot clearer of who will be advancing past the group stage when the Europa League drops enter the contest. Considering how there will be stronger teams that drop down from Europa League after the group stage, it is tough for a team to start in this competition and go all the way to the finals to win it. That being said, it can still be done by some very good teams so it is time to see if there are any teams in this group stage who could go all the way to the finals and make that run.  To Win Outright Aston Villa +400: Aston Villa is listed as the best choice to win this competition according to the books. Aston Villa is currently leading their group with 6 points after 3 matches and even though they are tied for points with Legia Warsaw, they still have the best team in the group and are likely to win it. Aston Villa has a very good team with a very strong home advantage but they are also one of the better teams in the Premier League. They finished last season in 7th place and are fighting for a top 4 spot right now in the league as well. Aston Villa also has a lot more talent and depth than other teams in this competition so they will be able to endure the long road ahead from the group stage as well as having the talent to beat any drop downs from Europa League. They have a great defense at home and a very potent attack as well and they will be able to overpower most of the teams that play in this competition. They have a very good chance of doing what West Ham did in this competition last season as there is no real team that will be able to challenge them. Aston Villa has the best team in the competition right now and there is a lot of value in them to win at this price.  Fiorentina +800: Fiorentina is listed as the next best choice to win this competition according to the books. Fiorentina is currently leading their group with 5 points after 3 matches and even though they are tied for points with Ferencvarosi, they have the best team in this group by far and they are likely going to win it. Fiorentina has been very good over the last calendar year as they went on a late surge in Serie A last season to finish in 8th place in the table and they have very few losses in 2023 as well. They have picked up some talent to improve their team as they are fighting for a top 4 spot in Italy this season and they will likely be looking at more in the winter transfer window. They also have a lot of experience on their side as they went all the way to the Conference League Finals last season but lost to West Ham, a team from the Premier League, and now there is a much better team from the Premier League in the competition this year. Fiorentina is the only other team in this competition right now that can withstand any team that drops down from Europa League as well as enduring the long road to the finals. There is definitely some value in Fiorentina to win this competition at this price considering how good they are and the fact they were in the finals last year, but if they have to meet up with Aston Villa at any point then it could be over for them.  Eintracht Frankfurt +1000: Frankfurt is listed as the next best choice to win this competition according to the books. Frankfurt is currently sitting in 2nd place of their group with 6 points from their 3 matches as PAOK Salonika is leading the group. There is still a chance that Frankfurt comes back to win this group as they do have the most talent of all the teams in this group, but even if they were to win this group, they would still have no shot at winning this competition this year. Frankfurt has not only been struggling a little in this group but they are also off to a bad start in their domestic league which is not a surprise as they did lose some of their key pieces that made them so good last year. They are clearly not the same team and they do not have the depth to make a deep run in this competition as they get to the later stages. They could end up winning their group but there are teams from Europa League that could definitely drop down and knock them out as well as stronger teams in this competition that they might have to face down the road. Frankfurt does not have a real shot at winning this competition and there is no value in them here.  Fenerbahce +1000: Fenerbahce is listed as the next best choice to win this competition according to the books. Fenerbahce has been in great form this year in all competitions as they currently lead their domestic table in the Turkish Super Lig as well as having 9 points from their 3 matches in this group stage as they lead the group as well. They are definitely a threat to go deep in this competition as they have a lot of talent and depth on their side and can put up a fight with most teams that drop down from Europa League. The problem for them will be that they will eventually run into a much stronger team, even if it is much later in the competition, and they will get knocked out before reaching the finals in the end. Fenerbahce has a very good team but there is no value in them to win this competition.  Recommendations The Europa Conference League is only 3 matches into the group stage but there is still a long way to go to the finals. Out of all the teams in this competition right now, there are really only 2 teams that have a real chance of making a deep run all the way to the finals and winning it all. Fiorentina definitely has some value at +800 as a dark horse as they will pull together to win their group and will only improve as the competition goes on as they have that experience from going to the finals last year, but Aston Villa at +400 still has the most value as they are the best team in the competition and can withstand any team that will drop down from Europa League. Aston Villa at +400 and Fiorentina at +800 both have the most value as both teams could end up in the finals just like last year when Fiorentina played a Premier League side in the finals. 

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MLS Cup Futures 2023

Monday, Oct 30, 2023

The MLS regular season has concluded which means the playoffs are in full swing to decide who will take home the MLS Cup this season. There is also a new playoff format for this year’s MLS playoffs to make things very interesting so now it is time to see who has the best chance of navigating this new path to the MLS Cup and winning it all this year. MLS Cup To Win Outright FC Cincinnati +250: Cincinnati is listed as the favorite to win the MLS Cup and they are the team that finished with the most points in the league, 6 points ahead of the next team. They also had the best record as they were the only team in the MLS to win 20 matches and the only team with less than 7 losses as well since they only had 5 losses. They also had a very strong home advantage all season as they did have the best home record in the league and that is going to be a big advantage for them throughout the playoffs since no team will have home advantage over them. Cincinnati is also a very complete team with their attack and defense so it is no surprise that they are the favorite as they do have the best chance of getting through to the finals. Cincinnati is a very good team all around and they have some value in winning the MLS Cup at this price.  Los Angeles FC +350: Los Angeles FC or LAFC is listed as the next best choice to win the MLS Cup this season. LAFC are the defending champions of the MLS Cup from last season and they still have one of the most talented squads in the league this year as well. They only finished in 3rd place of the Western Conference during the regular season though and they finished in 8th place with points in the entire MLS. They finished the regular season in very good form which will carry over into the playoffs but their motivation as the defending champions is in question as the CONCACAF Champions League was the title they wanted to win this year and they did not, and now they will likely be losing some key players in the winter as well. LAFC has a very good chance of making it to the finals this year as they are by far the strongest team in the Western Conference but they still have to go through Seattle possibly which could be very tough and they will definitely have a challenge in the finals as there are a lot of strong teams in the Eastern Conference this year, including a majority of the teams that finished ahead of LAFC in the MLS table. LAFC does have some value here but it is more likely the MLS Cup will go to a team from the Eastern Conference this year. Columbus Crew +650: Columbus is listed as the next best choice to win the MLS Cup this season. Columbus is another team that also finished the regular season in good form but a lot of their wins were starting to turn to draws near the end. They were a very good team this season as they were 3rd place in the Eastern Conference as well as the entire MLS table. They were also a team with a very strong home advantage as they had the 2nd best home record during the regular season in the entire MLS and that will help since they do have the 3rd seed in the Eastern Conference and would have home advantage over any Western Conference team if they were to make it to the finals. Columbus also has a very potent attack as they scored 67 goals this season which led the MLS in goals for, but they also needed to score those goals in their matches as they did not have a very good defense, allowing 46 goals. Columbus is a very good team with a strong home advantage but they were only 12th in the MLS this season with their road record and there is still a good chance that they will not have home advantage in the next 2 rounds if the higher seeds advance. Columbus will also get themselves into trouble on defense with the number of goals they allow and they do not have the team to make a deep run in these playoffs. There is not a lot of value with Columbus here.  Philadelphia Union +800: Philadelphia is listed as the next best choice to win the MLS Cup this season. Philadelphia is the team that went to the finals last year from the Eastern Conference and they lost to LAFC in the finals. That was a much better Philadelphia team with a stronger home advantage that was fighting for the Supporters’ Shield as well. Philadelphia was not as good of a team this year as they only finished in 4th place in the Eastern Conference and in 5th place for the entire MLS. They did have a good attack with 57 goals scored but their defense took a big step back with 41 goals allowed. Philadelphia also has a very tough road ahead of them as they will not have home advantage in the next round if Cincinnati advances and there are also 2 other teams in the Eastern Conference who would have home advantage over them. Philadelphia was not bad in their away matches this season but their defense is not what they were last year nor is this team as a whole and they will not recreate that magic that took them to the finals last year with so many good teams in the Eastern Conference. There is not a lot of value in Philadelphia to win.  Seattle Sounders FC +900: Seattle is listed as the next best choice to win the MLS Cup this season. Seattle is another team that was starting to catch fire near the end of the regular season as they finished playing in very good form. They finished the regular season in 7th place overall in the MLS table but they were also 2nd place in the Western Conference. St Louis is the team with the number 1 seed so even if Seattle has to meet up with LAFC down the line, Seattle will have home advantage for that match. Seattle did struggle with their attack this season as they only scored 41 goals but they had the best defense by far as they only allowed 32 goals which actually averages less than 1 goal allowed per match all year, the only team in the MLS to do so as well. Seattle’s biggest challenge in the Western Conference this year will be against LAFC but Seattle’s great defense along with the home advantage in that match gives them a very good chance to be the team from the Western Conference to make it to the finals. Seattle also has a long history over the last decade or so of having a lot of success in the MLS playoffs with a few MLS Cups to their name as well. Considering how they have the best defense in the league as well as the number 2 seed in the Western Conference, Seattle has a lot of value at this price to win the MLS Cup this year. Orlando City SC +1000: Orlando is listed as the next best choice to win the MLS Cup this season. Orlando finished the regular season winning 4 straight matches and they were by far the most in form team coming into the playoffs. They were also very strong all season as they finished in 2nd place in the Eastern Conference as well as the entire MLS table. Orlando has the number 2 seed and that is going to be very important for them as the only team in the entire MLS that will have home advantage over them is Cincinnati. Orlando also has the added advantage of being the best road team in the MLS this year during the regular season. They almost had identical home and away records this season as well as a very favorable road to the finals in these playoffs. Orlando was also one of the few teams that beat Cincinnati away from home and it was only a few weeks ago. Orlando has a very good team and they are by far the biggest dark horse in the MLS playoffs as there is a lot of value in them at this price. Recommendations  There are a lot of strong teams in the MLS this season with a lot of them being in the Eastern Conference and it is very likely that the winner of the MLS Cup will be a team from the Eastern Conference this season. Cincinnati at +250 is always a solid choice as they do have the best as well as the most complete team in the league but LAFC at +350 is not bad considering they are making one last run with these key players. The best options to win the MLS Cup this season though are Seattle at +900 from the Western Conference as well as Orlando City at +1000 from the Eastern Conference as both have the most value considering the seeds they have in the playoffs as well as the talent on the team. MLS Cup Finals: Seattle Sounders vs Orlando City.

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Champions League Futures (2023/24 Season)

Monday, Sep 18, 2023

The Champions League qualifiers have concluded and the groups have been set with the 1st round of the group stage kicking off on September 19. Last season Manchester City finally won the Champions League Title that has eluded them for so many years and they come into this season as the favorite to win it all, but this year it will be a lot more competitive with a lot of good teams in the competition. Now it is time to see who has the best chance at making a deep run and taking home the title this season.To Win Outright Manchester City +200: Man City is coming into this group stage as the favorites to win the whole tournament after winning the Champions League Title last season along with the Premier League and FA Cup. They are by far the best team in Europe but they did lose some of their depth in the transfer window and this is the competition where those losses will show as we get deeper in. Losing Mahrez and Gundoğan were both big losses to their depth and they did not really bring in any strong replacements as they still have a lot of talent. They have already been struggling in some of their matches to start the season as well and right now they are a weaker team than they were just a few months ago. Man City still has a very good team but considering their losses in the transfer window as well as some of the other teams in the competition, the value is not with them to win the UCL Title in B2B years. Bayern Munich +550: Bayern is coming into this group stage as the next best team to win the Champions League Title according to the books. Bayern made some big moves last year that did not pan out well for them as they lost striker Robert Lewandowski and replaced him with an injury prone Sadio Mane who was not a proper replacement for Lewandowski. Now they have made a splash again in the summer transfer window by inking Harry Kane to a 4 year deal and he is a true replacement for the striker they lost a year ago. Bayern even struggled to win the Bundesliga Title last season but they have come out on fire this year with their new striker and now they have the tools to make a deep run in this tournament. Bayern has always had a problem on defense in recent years but their new coach Tuchel is a great defensive mind and they have the talent on defense to be good, they just need Tuchel to whip their defense into shape like he did with Chelsea years ago. Their defense will improve under Tuchel as the season goes on and now they have a more potent attack with a good flow to it unlike what they have had in previous years. Bayern is going to be a real threat in this competition and there is a lot of value at this price for them to win the whole competition. Real Madrid +800: Real Madrid is coming into this season as the next team listed to win this tournament according to the books. Real Madrid was the Champions League champion as well as the La Liga champion just 2 years ago but last year was a very bad season by their standards as they came close in both of those competitions but came up short in the end. They have also retooled this season in the transfer window by saying goodbye to long time striker Karim Benzema and bringing in some fresh young talent to go along with their very experienced midfield. They still have most of their talent from last year but now they have added young superstar Jude Bellingham to inject some more youth into that attack while also replacing Benzema's presence with another veteran striker in Joselu. They have added a lot of depth and youth to keep up with the condensed schedule and they have a very dangerous team that will be focused on winning Champions League this year after coming up short last season. There is a lot of value with Real Madrid to win at this price. Arsenal +1000: Arsenal is coming into this season as the next team listed to win the tournament according to the books. Arsenal was very good last season as they led the Premier League for most of the year but when things came down to the final few weeks of the season, they cracked under the pressure blowing their chance at the Premier League Title while also fizzling out of Europa League. They have added some talent this season with Declan Rice joining the team and he is sure to help out that spotty defense, but they are still lacking the depth they need to make a deep run in this tournament. Arsenal does have a better team this season but they have shown on the big stage that they cannot beat the big names in the Premier League and eventually they will run into a team here that will knock them out. Arsenal is not a Champions League contender this year. Barcelona +1400: Barcelona is coming into this season as the next team listed to win this tournament according to the books. Barcelona made a lot of moves in the transfer window last season to improve their team and they brought in some big names like Robert Lewandowski as their new striker, but they also lost a lot of the talent they brought in since they overspent and were not able to pay all their players. They put themselves in a position where they could not do much in this summer transfer window. Barcelona absolutely dominated La Liga last year as they won the title and it was not even close, but they also fizzled out in the group stage of Champions League which was a big embarrassment. Their team is not that different from last year though and even though they dominate La Liga, La Liga is not Champions League. They will be more focused on winning UCL this year but they still do not have the talent or the depth and even if they make it out of the group stage this time, they will still fizzle out in the knockouts. Barcelona is not a Champions League contender this year. Paris Saint-Germain +1600: PSG is coming into this season as the next team listed to win this tournament according to the books. PSG won the Ligue 1 Title last year but they disappointed in Champions League once again. Now they have a very different team with no Messi and now Mbappe has been reunited with his French National teammate Ousmane Dembele. They also picked up the Portuguese wonderkid Gonçalo Ramos who was very impressive at the World Cup. They started off slow in Ligue 1 this season but now they have been gaining steam as their pieces start to click. This new look PSG team has the talent and the depth to make a deep run in this competition. There are better teams in the competition than PSG but with the right path they have the potential to be a very dangerous team and this new look PSG is definitely not a team to sleep on. PSG is not the best option but they do have some value as a dark horse to win this competition. Manchester United +2000: Man Utd is coming into this season as the next team listed to win this competition according to the books. Man Utd had a much improved season in the Premier League last year but they still only finished in 3rd place and were unable to keep up with some of the better teams in the league. They have made some moves in the transfer window to improve even more this year and they do have a great team as their starters are very good, but their bench is not great and they lack the depth they need to make a deep run in this tournament late in the year. They have also been awful to start the season as they are clearly in disarray and until they start to put everything together playing in better form, there are a lot of teams who could knock them out of this tournament. Man Utd is not a Champions League contender this year. Newcastle +2500: Newcastle is coming into this game as the next team listed to win this tournament according to the books. Newcastle had a very good season in the Premier League last year as their new influx of cash has instantly made them competitive, finishing last season in 4th place. They have a lot of good quality players in the midfield as well as on defense but their attack can be very streaky at times. They also have some solid starters but they lack a lot of bench depth which they will need as they finished last season in 4th but played in no European competitions. Now they have an extra competition to focus on as well as extra matches to play and it will wear down on this team as the season goes on. Newcastle is not a Champions League contender this year. Napoli +2500: Napoli is coming into this season as the next team listed to win this tournament according to the books. Napoli had a very good year last season as they won the Serie A Title for the 1st time in over 30 years and they dominated the league as the title race was not even close. They were also very good in Champions League as they made a deep run into the quarter finals before getting eliminated by AC Milan. Napoli did not do much in the transfer window as they were more focused on keeping their talent and once again they have a very good team this year. They are also going to be more focused on Champions League this season since they already won the league last year and they showed they have the team to go deep. Napoli has a lot of value here to win this tournament as a dark horse. Inter Milan +2500: Inter Milan is coming into this season as the next team listed to win this tournament according to the books. Inter Milan was very good in Serie A last season but they fell short of the title. They also made it all the way to the finals of Champions League which they lost in a close game against Man City. They have a very good defense that can carry them far but they also lost a lot of talent in the transfer window and have a much different team this year. They do not have as much depth now so juggling both competitions will be hard for them late in the year, especially since they are going to be focused on winning the Serie A Title after letting it get out of hand last year. Inter Milan may have made it to the finals last year but they are not going back this season as they are not a Champions League contender this year. Atletico Madrid +2500: Atletico Madrid is coming into this season as the next team listed to win this tournament according to the books. Atletico Madrid is off to a good start this season in La Liga and they have been dominant since the end of last season when they switched their focus from defense to a more attacking mindset. They have a lot of talent on their team and they have a good attack that can score goals now, but recently their defense has been the issue. They still have a very good defense but they usually allow goals in their matches now which will get them into trouble when they play a much stronger team. Atletico has not had a lot of success in Champions League in recent years either and they are not going to be much of a threat here compared to some of the other teams in the tournament. Atletico Madrid is not a Champions League contender this year. AC Milan +3300: AC Milan is coming into this season as the next team listed to win this tournament according to the books. AC Milan is a team that lost some talent in the summer transfer window with the departure of key players like Sandro Tonali as well as Brahim Diaz. They did make some moves to replace those players as they brought in Pulisic who has fit in well with AC Milan coming out guns blazing this season. AC Milan seems more focused than ever after going deep into Champions League last year but losing in the semi finals to rival Inter Milan. They are going to be focused on another deep run this year and with the team they have put together this year, they look like one of the more dangerous teams in Italy by far. AC Milan has a lot of value in them to make a deep run and win this tournament this season.RecommendationsIt is going to be a very competitive Champions League season with many teams looking like they have a real shot at winning. With the odds as they are right now, Bayern Munich at +550 and Real Madrid at +800 are the best options for an outright winner with a slight lean to Real Madrid since there is more value considering their recent success in the competition. As for dark horses, PSG at +1600, Napoli at +2500, and AC Milan at +3300 have the most value to be surprises this year with a slight lean to Napoli considering how they went to the quarter finals last year and won the Serie A Title so Champions League will be more of a focus for them this season.

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Europa League Futures (2023/24 Season)

Monday, Sep 18, 2023

The Europa League Qualifiers have concluded and now the group stage is set for Europa League to start on September 21. Keep in mind that this will not be the final pool of teams in the competition as there will be a dropdown from Champions League after the group stage. Last season, Sevilla won Europa League but their campaign started in Champions League and it is likely that one of those stronger teams that drop down will win it this year. Now it is time to see if any of these teams in Europa League now can hold their own to the finals even with the teams from Champions League joining.To Win Outright Liverpool +350: Liverpool is coming into this season as the favorite to win this tournament according to the books. Liverpool was not great in the Premier League last season as they finished in 5th place and they had major troubles with the flow of their attack as well as their defense. They never really found a proper replacement for Sadio Mane until signing Alexis Mac Allister in this transfer window and he has added some much needed stability to this attack. They have also added a lot of attacking players that can score goals and now they have a lot of depth with their attack and midfield. Their defense is still an issue since they have not improved it but they will have such a strong attack that they will be able to overpower most teams in this competition. Liverpool is going to be a much better team this year and they are the only team in this competition right now that can take on any team that drops down since they have Champions League quality this year. Liverpool does have some value here as they have the best chance of winning this tournament, but there might be more value on them later in the competition when Champions League teams drop down. Either way, the value is with Liverpool as they are the best team in this competition right now. Brighton & Hove Albion +1400: Brighton is coming into this season as the next team listed to win this tournament according to the books. Brighton was a very good team last season in the Premier League as they surprised a lot with how well they played. They have also been playing well to start this EPL season and they still have a lot of their talent from last year, but they did lose their 2 biggest pieces in the midfield as Mac Allister and Caicedo are no longer there. Brighton may have a good team this season but they do not have a lot of depth now and it is going to take a toll on them as they were not a team last season that was playing in European competition. They will wear down as the season goes on from the lack of depth and they will not stand a chance once teams from Champions League start dropping down. Brighton is not a Europa League contender this season. Villarreal +1600: Villarreal is coming into this season as the next team listed to win this tournament according to the books. Villarreal was not great in La Liga last season as they have been much better in previous years, but they did make some splashes in the transfer window to improve their attack. They picked up Sorloth who has added a much more potent element to this attack this season and Spanish teams have a very good history of going far in these European competitions. Villarreal is not the strongest team in this competition but they do have a lot of talent on their side as well as a much better team than last year. They are going to be a force in this tournament and with the right path they have the potential to make a very deep run. Villarreal does have some value as a dark horse to win this tournament at this price. Roma +1600: Roma is coming into this season as the next team on the list to win this tournament according to the books. Roma went to the finals of Europa League last season and ended up losing to Sevilla. They were very good in this tournament with their solid defense but their attack has struggled to score goals in big matches and they have also lost some of their talent in the transfer window. They are also off to an awful start in Serie A and they struggled last season in the domestic league as well. Roma has a lot of problems with their attack and even their defense has taken a hit this season. They are going to be focused on winning this competition after coming so close last year, but they also had a chance to be a top 4 team in Italy which they blew and Serie A is going to have to be a focus for them as well which will wear them down late in the year as they do not have a lot of depth. Roma is not a Europa League contender this season. Real Betis +1600: Real Betis is coming into this season as the next team listed to win this tournament according to the books. Real Betis was not as good as they should have been last year but their season was also plagued by injuries to key players. They still have all of that talent on their team this year but now everyone is healthy and playing again. Real Betis has played well in their few La Liga matches to start the season and they are going to be a much better team this year between that solid defense and stronger attack now. La Liga is also a very tough league to get into the top 4 as those spots are usually dominated by the same teams every year so this competition will definitely be a focus for Real Betis and Spanish teams have a very good history in these European competitions. Real Betis has a lot of talent on their team and the ability to make a deep run. They are a dark horse to win this tournament. West Ham +2000: West Ham is coming into this season as the next team listed to win this tournament according to the books. West Ham was awful in the Premier League last season as they were battling relegation late in the season at one point but they have a lot of talent on their team and should have never been in that position. They got into this tournament by winning Europa Conference League which they absolutely dominated every team they played against but after their performance in their domestic league last year, they are going to be focused on being better in Premier League matches this season so they do not find themselves in that position again. They also lost a key player in Declan Rice so they do have a bit of a weaker team this year and they are going to be facing much stronger competition than what they saw in Conference League last year. West Ham is not a Europa League contender this year. RecommendationsEuropa League is a very tricky competition to bet on at the start due to all the later drop downs by Champions League teams in the tournament. There are still a few teams that can make a very deep run in this tournament though and there is a lot of value on some of these teams who can test the stronger teams coming down from Champions League later in the competition. The team with the most value as of right now is Liverpool at +350 as they do have the strongest team in the competition right now and they also have Champions League talent with the moves they made in the transfer window so they can definitely hold their own against some of these Champions League teams dropping down. Considering how well Spanish teams have done in this competition, both Villarreal and Real Betis have some value to win at +1600 as dark horses with a slight lean to Real Betis as well since they do have more talent. So Liverpool at +350 is the team with the most value but Real Betis at +1600 is also a good dark horse.

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Italy Serie A Futures (2023/24 Season)

Wednesday, Aug 09, 2023

The Italian Serie A is right around the corner now with Napoli being the current defending champions of the league. Serie A has been very competitive over the last few years as there has been a different champion in each of the last 4 years. Now it is time to see who has the best chance of winning the title this year. To Win Outright Inter Milan +175: Inter Milan is coming into this season as the team with the best chance at winning the title this year according to the books. Inter Milan finished in 3rd place last season with 72 points and they may be the favorites to win it all this season but they have made a lot of changes to their club. They sold Goalkeeper Andre Onana as well as Defensive Midfielder Marcelo Brozovic which will be a huge blow to their defense. They also lost Centre-Back Danilo D’Ambrosio, Centre-Back Milan Skriniar, and Centre-Forward Edin Dzeko on free transfers. They did pick up Goalkeeper Yann Sommer as well as 35 year old Centre-Back Francesco Acerbi to replace some of the talent they lost but those are more of downgrades from what they had. They did acquire Right Midfielder Juan Cuadrado as well as Centre-Forward Marcus Thuram in free transfers which will be a much needed boost to their attack, but their defense is not going to be as strong this season. Their attack has also taken a hit with the departures of Dzeko and Lukaku but they do have a very strong midfield to make up the difference. Inter Milan is also going to be very focused on winning the title after the way they let it get out of hand last season, but their team is definitely weaker than it was last season. They are still going to have a very good team that finishes in the top 4 but in such a competitive league with so many good teams right now, they simply do not have the edge in talent with the moves they have made in this transfer window.  Napoli +300: Napoli is coming into this season as the next team with the best chance at winning the title this season according to the books. Napoli are the current champions of Serie A after winning the league title last year with a 16 point lead over 2nd place. Their emergence as a dominant force in Italy was a bit of a surprise last season but they showed their skill and their depth by winning the title with a 16 point cushion and even going very deep into Champions League, losing in the quarter finals. Their big departure in the transfer window was the loss of Centre-Back Min-Jae Kim which will be a big loss to their defense but other than that, the core of their team is pretty much the same as it was last season. They did not really make a move for any new players either as their goal was to retain the talent they had and even ended up signing a few players from the team last year after their loans were up. Napoli has virtually the same starting players as they had last season other than Kim and they were leagues above the rest of the team with the way they finished. They have very good star players in Osimhen and Kvaratskhelia just to name a few and they are only going to get better this year as they gain more experience. Napoli are the defending champions and the last time they won the title prior to last season was back in 1990 but they still have the best team in Italy this year with the talent they have and they are going to be trying very hard to prove that point this season as the league has not had B2B champions in years. Napoli is still the best team this season and they have the best chance at winning the Serie A Title.  Juventus +333: Juventus is coming into this season as the next team with the best chance at winning the title this season according to the books. Juventus has not been the dominant team in Italy over the past few years like they have been for so many years of their history and a big reason for this team's struggles has been their weak attack. They have lost some talent in the transfer window with Right Winger Angel Di Maria as well as Right Midfielder Juan Cuadrado which will be a bit of a blow to this team and their already weak attack. They also sold Right Winger Dejan Kulusevski to Tottenham at the end of his loan there. They have bought some players in the transfer window as well but a lot of the players they have signed were on the team last year on loan and are now being bought out by the team. Defensive Midfielder Manuel Locatelli, Centre-Forward Moise Kean, and Centre-Forward Arkadiusz Milik are a few of the players they have bought out of their loans but that is not going to help them improve this season. They also signed Right Winger Timothy Weah which will be a much needed boost to their attack while also getting back Defensive Midfielder Denis Zakaria and Central Midfielder Weston McKennie from their loans. That will replace the talent they lost in the midfield but their attack has not done much to improve this year and as good as their defense is, scoring is still going to be an issue for them which will not make them a title contender. Juventus may be good enough to finish in the top 4 this season after coming in 7th last year but they will not win the Serie A Title.  AC Milan +500: AC Milan is coming into this season as the next team with the best chance at winning the title this year according to the books. AC Milan barely slipped into 4th place last season with 74 points but they did have a very deep run in Champions League, going all the way to the semi finals. They have been making a lot of moves in this transfer window though and a lot of them have not been good moves for the team. They sold Defensive Midfielder Sandro Tonali which will be a huge blow to this team this year while also losing Left Winger Ante Rebic in a free transfer. They also lost Attacking Midfielder Brahim Diaz who was on loan but he was also a massive part in this AC Milan attack last season. They did make a lot of signings as they brought in Right Winger Christian Pulisic, Right Winger Samuel Chukwueze, Central Midfielder Yunus Musah, Central Midfielder Tijjani Reijnders, Central Midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek, and Centre-Forward Noah Okafor to replace some of the talent they lost but now they also have the task of bringing in all these players and actually seeing who fits well in the lineup. They still have a lot of the talent they have from last year but Tonali and Diaz are both huge losses defensively and offensively respectively. They are going to get out to a slower start this season as they try to figure out what lineups work best for them and they will be at a disadvantage as their team is left weaker than it was last season. AC Milan will still be a top 4 contender this season but they are not going to win the title this year.  RecommendationSerie A is going to be a very competitive league this season with a lot of good teams that could win the title. There are some teams that were very good last season and could be mentioned here but they do not have the talent to win the title this year as there are teams like Lazio and Atalanta who have been shedding talent while teams like Roma have the talent but do not have the coach with their style of play. In the end, there can only be 1 winner and the best team to win the Serie A Title this season is still Napoli as they have the strongest team by far and did not make too many hurtful changes at all. Napoli at +300 is the best option to win the Serie A Title. 

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Spain La Liga Futures (2023/24 Season)

Wednesday, Aug 09, 2023

The Spanish La Liga is right around the corner now with a very competitive season ahead. Barcelona absolutely dominated La Liga last season while rivals Real Madrid dominated the European competition up until the finals of Champions League, but this year will be a much more competitive season so it is time to see who has the best chance at bringing home the La Liga Title in Spain this year.  To Win Outright Real Madrid +100: Real Madrid is coming into this season as the team with the best chance at winning the title according to the books. Real Madrid finished last season in 2nd place and they were 10 points behind the leaders, they also went to the Champions League finals which they lost to Manchester City so last season was a bit of a wash for them as they came close in each competition but came away with no trophies other than winning Copa del Rey. They have made some big moves in the transfer window though and they will be looking to have a much better season all around. They did lose Centre-Forward Karim Benzema as well as Right Winger Marco Asensio but they have so much depth at the midfield position as well as with attacking players that those 2 departures will not leave much of a dent. They also signed Central Midfielder Jude Bellingham as well as adding Centre-Forward Joselu and getting Attacking Midfielder Brahim Diaz back from loan so they have a lot of talent in the midfield and attacking positions with good bench depth as well. They are not done either as there have been plenty of talks still about paying the transfer fee to bring Kylian Mbappe over 1 year earlier than expected and if that happens than there will simply be too much attacking power on this team for them to not win the title as they still have a solid defense from last year with not many changes to it. Real Madrid will also be upset as a club over the season they had last year where they came close but did not win any major trophies in Europe or the league so they will be focused on performing well in both competitions and they have the depth to do so. Real Madrid is not only a real contender to win the La Liga Title this season but they are by far the best option considering their team could improve even more with the talent they are bringing in.  Barcelona +137: Barcelona is coming into this season as the next team with the best chance to win the title this year according to the books. Barcelona is the current champions of La Liga from last year after going on a spending spree which saw them dominate the league all season, but they were awful in Champions League as they fizzled out in the group stage and after having a year like that, their focus will definitely be on going deeper in Champions League this season. They did shed some talent with the departure of Defensive Midfielder Sergio Busquets as well as Left Back Jordi Alba who both followed Lionel Messi to Inter Miami, but they were also both north of the age of 34 and Barcelona still has a lot of talent on defense from their signing spree last year to make up for it. Barcelona did have the best defense in La Liga as well but due to their current financial situation, they were not able to spend any money on bringing in new players. They did sign Central Midfielder Ilkay Gundogan on a free transfer from Man City though but other than that their attack is pretty much the same. Their attack did struggle at times last year to score goals and they are not going to be as focused on league matches this year after winning the title since they will be focused on winning in Champions League. They do have the depth to perform well in both competitions but they are also going to have a Real Madrid side to compete with that continues to improve their team by spending money and they simply have that massive advantage over Barcelona this season. Barcelona does not have the talent to win the La Liga Title this season, they will still be a very good team but they will fall short of the title in the end.  Atletico Madrid +900: Atletico Madrid is coming into this season as the next team with the best chance at winning the title this year according to the books. Atletico Madrid finished in 3rd place last season but they ended up just 1 point behind the 2nd place Real Madrid and were by far the best team in Spain over the last few weeks of the season. Their start to the year was not great but they started to figure out their problems midway through the season and then there was a turning point for them where the team just started to click and they were definitely on the upward trend. They are only going to build on that this season now that Memphis Depay is healthier and will be able to contribute more to the team. They did sell some players like Centre-Forward Matheus Cunha, Left Back Renan Lodi, and Defensive Midfielder Geoffrey Kondogbia but none of those players were playing big roles on the team last season either. They also bought Second Striker Antoine Griezmann after being loaned from Barcelona the last few years as well as adding Right Back Cesar Azpilicueta on a free transfer to boost their defense. They have been a much better team since adapting their more attacking style and they will be looking to build on their great finish to last season but they still do not have the talent that some of the big spenders in this league have and they will fall short of the title as they will also have Champions League matches to worry about but will not have the depth to focus on both competitions as much. Atletico Madrid is definitely going to be a much better team that will make this title race very interesting as it will be more of a 3-horse race as opposed to the 2-horse race it usually is, but they will still fall short to the bigger clubs.  RecommendationThere are plenty of other teams on the list that could be mentioned as they are very good teams but every team lower than Atletico Madrid simply does not have the talent to compete with the big clubs in this league this year, especially the way Real Madrid has been spending money. Real Madrid at +100 is the best option here when looking for a team to win the La Liga Title this season as they will have the motivation to do so as well as the talent, and they only have plans of improving even more. Real Madrid will win the La Liga Title this year in the 2023/24 season.

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Premier League Futures (2023/24 Season)

Sunday, Jul 30, 2023

August is approaching quickly and with that comes the start of the Premier League season which is right around the corner now. The first Premier League matches of the season kickoff on August 11 so it is time to see which teams are real contenders and which teams are just pretenders when it comes to winning this season’s Premier League title.  To Win Outright Manchester City -138: Man City is coming into this season as the team with the best chance to win the title and for good reason as they are the defending champions from last year and also completed the Treble as they also won the Champions League title as well as the FA Cup. Man City has lost some talent this year in the transfer window as they have seen the departure of right winger Riyad Mahrez as well as central midfielder Ilkay Gundogan and left back Benjamin Mendy. The departure of these players will definitely be a bit of a blow to Man City but they also have so much depth on their bench that they will be able to fill the holes with players just as talented and the 1 silver lining is that none of these players have decided to stay in the Premier League either. They did pick up central midfielder Mateo Kovacic from Chelsea as a replacement for Gundogan and they also have countless other players on the bench so as far as their strength of team goes, nothing has really changed much from last year and they are going to be a just as dominant team as they were so they still have a very good chance at winning the Premier League title this season.  Arsenal +500: Arsenal is coming into this season as the next team with the best chance to win the Premier League title according to the books. Arsenal had a very good team last season as they finished in 2nd place in the league and were actually leading the table for most of the season before letting it go to Man City in the final weeks. Arsenal is not a close 2nd to winning the title but they are the next best team according to the books because of their great season last year along with the fact that they have spent money to bring in more players to try and improve this team. They did lose a key player in defensive midfielder Granit Xhaka but they also signed Declan Rice to replace him as well as adding some other players to boost both their attack and their defense. They have brought in attacking midfielder Kai Havertz as well as bringing back centre-forward Folarin Balogun from his loan to add some dynamic talent to their attack and they also added centre-back Jurrien Timber as well as right back Cedric Soares to boost their defensive depth. Arsenal has definitely made some moves to improve their team and they are going to have their sights set on the Premier League title this year after almost winning it last season, but this season they are also going to have Champions League matches to worry about and it is their 1st time back in Champions League in years so they will definitely be more focused on that competition and that could negatively affect their Premier League matches down the road as we get late into the season with the build up of the condensed schedule. Arsenal has definitely improved their team from last year but they do not have the depth to win the Premier League title this season.  Liverpool +800: Liverpool is coming into this season as the next team with the best chance at winning the Premier League title according to the books but this is a Liverpool team that was already on the down trend last year and even failed to finish in the top 4. They will have an easier time focusing on Premier League matches this season as they are only in Europa League and likely do not care that much about the competition so getting back into the top 4 of the Premier League will be their focus for this season. Liverpool is also in the middle of a changing of the guard though as they brought in a lot of new players last year which took some time to mesh and now they have seen a lot of their core players depart from the team in this transfer window as well. Central midfielder Jordan Henderson, centre-forward Roberto Firmino, central midfielder Naby Keita, central midfielder James Milner, and central midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain just to name a few players who have left the team in this transfer window and even though a lot of those players did not do much for the team last season, these were the core players that were around during their dominant years in the Premier League and the departure of these players signifies a rebuild with this Liverpool team as they desperately try to fix the problems they had last year. They have brought in some quality players to fill the gaps now as they signed attacking midfielder Alexis Mac Allister as well as attacking midfielder Dominik Szoboszlai which will definitely bring a much needed direction to this attack that was in disarray last season, but considering all of the attacking talent they have now in the midfield as well as their forwards, they are clearly going for an overly dominant attack this season and have done nothing to bring in players to strengthen their defense and defensive midfield which was the areas they struggled the most in. Liverpool can continue to overload their attack with talent but just like last year it will not do anything for them until they stabilize their awful defense and midfield. Liverpool is going to struggle once again this season to even make the top 4 and they will not be a threat to win the Premier League title.  Manchester United +1100: Man Utd is coming into this season as the next team with the best chance to win the Premier League title according to the books. Man Utd is coming off of a great season where they finished in 3rd place and were much improved after so many years of struggling. They have continued to add players in this summer transfer window that will boost their team while also getting rid of some players that were holding them back. They have seen the departure of left winger Anthony Elanga, goalkeeper David de Gea, and centre-forward Wout Weghorst who went back to Burnley at the end of his loan but none of these players were key pieces in their lineup last season and the biggest blow to this team in the transfer window this year was actually the departure of central midfielder Marcel Sabitzer who went back to Bayern Munich as his loan ended but he had some very good flashes of play for this team last year. Man Utd has been signing a lot of talent to improve though as they have brought in attacking midfielder Mason Mount to add some flair to their already strong attack as well as signing goalkeeper Andre Onana who is definitely a step up from the goalkeeper they had. They are also in talks with centre-forward Rasmus Hojlund which would really strengthen their attack if he were to join, but Man Utd has not done anything to improve their defense which they did have some issues with last season, specifically with the flanks and their defensive depth, so until they add some players to boost their defense, they are not a true contender to win the Premier League title, especially when they will also have Champions League matches to focus on as well which is a competition they have not been in for a few years now. The focus on the title is not going to be there and they do not have the depth to make a run at the title this season.  Chelsea +1200: Chelsea is coming into this season as the next team with the best chance at winning the Premier League title according to the books. Chelsea is coming off of an awful season where they finished in the bottom half of the table and a big problem they had was with the owner of the team after purchasing the club from the old owner as their new owner started to buy up any players on the market just because they were talented and wanted to keep them away from the other clubs. This led to a big problem with the team as they had an excess of players on the roster and there was absolutely no direction in which the team was headed in as they had also gone through quite a few managers during the season. Now they have another new manager but this time they will have some stability as they have departed with a majority of their players from last season and have just left a solid core to build on. They also added centre-forward Nicolas Jackson and second striker Christopher Nkunku to bring some consistency to their attack as scoring goals was a big issue for them last year. Now that they have improved their attack, which was their biggest issue, and have narrowed down the talent on their team to gain some stability with their lineup, an experienced manager like Pochettino will be able to guide the talent on this team to a much improved season as there is definitely no shortage of talent on the team, for them it is just all about putting it together on the pitch in an organized way. Chelsea has some real value here as a dark horse Premier League title contender because they have the talent and potential to be very good and due to their poor performance last year, they are not in any European competitions this season which means they will be well rested for their Premier League matches and fully focused on performing well in the league all year. Chelsea is definitely a dark horse to win the Premier League title this year.  Newcastle +1400: Newcastle is coming into this season as the next team with the best chance to win the Premier League title according to the books. Newcastle is coming off of a very good season where they came out of nowhere to finish in 4th place, but they were also a dominant team in the league all season and a lot of that has to do with their new owners and the money they have been spending on the team. Newcastle had one of the best defenses in the Premier League last season and their attack was also very good but it could be inconsistent at times. They did lose their left winger Allan Saint-Maximin in the transfer window which was their biggest blow, but he also missed a lot of the year due to injury so it will not have a huge impact on this team. They also picked up left winger Harvey Barnes to replace him who will have a much bigger impact on this attack while also adding defensive midfielder Sandro Tonali to boost their midfield even more. Newcastle was a surprisingly dominant team last season and managed to maintain that good form all season. They are going to be just as good this season if not better with the improvements they have made but they are still not going to be a title contender this year. There are still a lot of strong teams that will be around them in the table this year and they were barely holding onto their top 4 spot near the end of last season. The fact that they finished in 4th place also means they will be playing in Champions League this season which is an extra competition that they did not need to focus on last year and never had to rotate their squad as much. It will be a lot more difficult for them this year to juggle both competitions with the depth they have so even though they are still going to be a very good team, they are not going to be a title contender this season.  RecommendationsManchester City is the obvious favorite to win the Premier League title this season after the year they had last season but even when looking at the squads, they still have the most talent and the deepest bench in the league which gives them the best chance at winning the title. Manchester City to win the Premier League title at -138 is not a bad price either considering they are usually closer to -200 or more. If looking for more of a longshot though, Chelsea at +1200 definitely has the most value as they are not going to be as bad as they were last season with their new direction now and also not playing in any European competitions can only help them from a depth standpoint. Manchester City at -138 is the best way to go here and Chelsea at +1200 is the best longshot.

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Copa Libertadores Futures (Round of 16)

Monday, Jul 10, 2023

The Copa Libertadores group stage has come to an end now leaving us with the final 16 teams on the road to the finals. There are some very strong teams left in the tournament, including some of the biggest giants from Brasil and Argentina, and it is time to see which of these teams has the best chance of making it to the finals and lifting the trophy this year.  To Win Outright Flamengo +350: Flamengo is coming in as the team with the best chance to win the tournament according to the books and for very good reason as this is not only one of the best teams in Brasil with their talent and depth, but they are also the defending Copa Libertadores champions from last year. Flamengo got off to a slower start this season as they usually do but now they find themselves in 2nd place of the Brasileirao and have been heating up recently as they are on a big run. This is a very good team once they get hot and they are very tough to stop once they are in a groove like this. They have the talent and the depth to make a deep run in this tournament as they are the defending champions and they usually get very hot late in the season which will give them lots of momentum going deep into this competition. Their defense has been sloppy early in the season but they will tighten up as the season goes on and they still have a very strong attack that can score goals both at home and away. Flamengo has the talent to make a deep run here and repeat as champions of the Copa Libertadores.  Palmeiras +400: Palmeiras is coming in as the next team with the best chance to win this tournament according to the books. Palmeiras did not make it to the finals of this tournament last year but they have won 2 of the last 3 Copa Libertadores Titles as they won it B2B the 2 years prior to last season and they are also the defending Brasileirao champions from last season as well. Just like Flamengo, Palmeiras is a Brasilian giant that is one of the best teams in the country as they have a lot of talent and depth on their squad. They have not gotten out to a great start in the league this season as they are currently in 5th place but they were rolling in the Copa Libertadores group stage, winning 5 straight after losing their 1st match at elevation. Palmeiras does have a tougher matchup in this round with Atletico Mineiro and that could be a big obstacle in their way to the next round, but Atletico Mineiro has fallen out of form recently and Palmeiras has also had their number over the last few years when they face each other. Palmeiras has a very good team and they do have both the talent and the depth to make a deep run in this tournament, but they have not been at their best in their league matches this season and their early performance in the Brasileirao this year could have a lasting effect on Copa Libertadores if they make it to deeper rounds against much better opponents. Some of the stronger teams in this competition also matchup very well against Palmeiras this year so it would not be shocking to see an early exit for them before the finals.  River Plate +600: River Plate is coming in as the next team with the best chance to win this tournament according to the books and they are also the biggest favorite to win for teams from Argentina. River Plate is a giant in Argentina and they have definitely been flexing their muscles this season as they have returned to glory in the Argentina Liga Profesional de Futbol, currently sitting at the top of the table with a big lead over 2nd place and only 3 league matches left. River Plate has also been rolling over teams in their matches recently which will give them a lot of momentum coming into this round, especially if they are coming off of a title win in their league. They are the best team in Argentina right now with the most talent and depth in their squad and they also have a scheduling advantage over some of the other Brasilian teams in this tournament. They play their last league match on July 30 which means they have nothing else to focus on but winning this competition when the Round of 16 starts in August. River Plate also struggled a lot last season in both competitions so now that they are back on top of Argentina coming into this Round of 16, expect nothing but the best level of play from this River Plate and they will certainly be a big threat to go deep into this tournament and win it. Fluminense +800: Fluminense is coming in as the next team with the best chance to win this tournament according to the books but this Fluminense side has definitely fallen out of form in their recent matches. Fluminense was one of the hottest teams in Brasil coming into the league season and this Copa Libertadores competition and they started off very strong in both tournaments but have fallen off in both since then. They did not finish the group stage off on a strong note and they have even been struggling to win matches and score goals in their league matches right now. Fluminense will have to start playing much better and get on another roll like they were on at the beginning of the season before they can even be considered a deep threat in this tournament, but even if they do there are still a lot of better teams that has been playing very well and eventually they will run into another club that will knock them out. Fluminense looked like a promising choice at the beginning of the season but they have regressed back into what they are and will not be able to put together a deep run in this tournament.  Boca Juniors +1200: Boca Juniors is coming in as the next team with the best chance to win this tournament according to the books and they are also a giant in Argentina with a very good squad, but they have not been performing well in their own league as they currently sit around the middle of the table and they will struggle against some of the better teams in this competition as well. The few things they do have going for them is that they do have a very good defense that does not allow many goals and they have a very strong home advantage with a much stronger attack there. The problem is that they struggle to score goals away from home and if they do not make good use of their home leg in every round, they will be at risk of exiting the tournament to a better team that will keep them from scoring. Defense is very important when making a deep run in a competition like this but there are also plenty of talented teams with very strong attacks and if Boca Juniors is not able to score goals on those good defenses, then they are not going to be able to make a deep run here with their away performance this year. Boca Juniors has no chance of going deep into this tournament as they need to focus on winning matches in their own league before focusing on a competition like this with the best of the best.  Racing Club +1200: Racing Club is coming in as the next team with the best chance to win this tournament according to the books but they are another Argentina giant that has failed to perform well in their own league this season. Racing Club has been a middle of the table team all season and they have also struggled in their away matches which will be a problem in this competition. They do have a very good team that plays well at home, but even in some of their recent home matches they have played very lazy and lethargic matches, dropping points against teams they should be beating, and there are a lot of much stronger teams in this competition for them to get through on their way to the finals. Just like Boca Juniors, Racing Club has had poor performances away from home all season and they have struggled to score in those matches as well. There is a chance Racing Club is not even in any South American competitions next year with their performance in the league this season and they are not going to be a threat to make a deep run in this tournament either.  RecommendationsThere are some very good teams left in this competition and with all of the South American giants still left, it will likely be a club from Brasil or Argentina who wins. This competition has been strongly dominated by clubs from Brasil over the last few years and Flamengo at +350 would still be a very good choice to defend their title as they have the experience and also one of the best teams on the continent. There is a team that can give Flamengo a run for their money though and considering the great season they had along with the scheduling advantages they are going to have as well as the talent on their team, River Plate at +600 is a very good choice to win this competition and return the trophy to Argentinian soil after so long. Flamengo at +350 and River Plate at +600 are the 2 best choices to win this competition but I am siding with River Plate at +600 to be the 2023 Copa Libertadores Champions. 

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2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup Futures (Group Betting)

Wednesday, Jun 28, 2023

The 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand is right around the corner with it being less than a month away now so it is time to take a deep dive into the individual groups and see where the value is when it comes to making it out of the group stage. Not every group will be covered here as some groups are just harder to find value in due to the different strengths of each group but there is plenty of money to be made with the group betting. Group Outrights/Qualification Group A - New Zealand, Norway, Philippines, Switzerland: Group A consists of these 4 teams with Norway being the -300 favorite to win the group, followed by both Switzerland and host nation New Zealand at +500, then Philippines in last at +50000. Norway is clearly the most dominant team in this group and it is very unlikely that another nation swoops in to win the group from them, but the value here is in the 2nd nation to qualify from the group as New Zealand sits at -110 to qualify and Switzerland at -150. The books have Switzerland as the more likely team to go through but New Zealand does have the advantage of being one of the host nations so they will be playing on home soil in this tournament and they also have the advantage of being more adapted to the time zone as well. Switzerland did not perform well at their last major competition either as they failed to get out of the group stage in the 2022 Euro Cup, losing 2 of their matches and drawing 1. New Zealand has not been in great form themselves coming into the tournament and they have not played in a competitive tournament like this in quite a while either, but considering that both New Zealand and Switzerland will likely lose their matches to the dominant Norway but have a good chance at beating the Philippines, there is a very good chance that this qualification spot comes down to the final matchday when New Zealand and Switzerland play each other and anything can happen then with New Zealand playing what is essentially a home match. The value in this group is with New Zealand to advance at -110. Group B - Australia, Canada, Nigeria, Ireland: Group B consists of these 4 teams with host nation Australia as the -200 favorite to win the group, followed by Canada at +200, Ireland at +1600, then Nigeria in last at +3300. Australia is the clear favorite here according to the books as they are one of the host nations and will have home advantage throughout the whole tournament, but they are not the strongest team in this group as they are only 10th in the FIFA Women’s rankings while fellow group member Canada actually comes in as the strongest nation in the group, ranked 7th overall in the world. There is not much value here in taking a team to qualify from the group as Australia and Canada are both top 10 teams in the world, clearly the strongest 2 teams in this group, but there is definitely value in taking Canada to win the group at +200. As mentioned before, Canada is ranked higher in the FIFA rankings than Australia is and they also have a lot more experience playing in these kinds of tournaments. Canada is always a threat deep in the World Cup, they also won the gold medal at the last Olympics and went to the finals of their CONCACAF Nations League which they lost to USA who is the best team in the world right now. This is another situation in which the group winner could come down to when Australia plays Canada in their match against each other and even though Australia does have the home advantage, Canada has a stronger team with more talent on it. The value in this group is with Canada to win the group at +200. Group D - China, Denmark, England, Haiti: Group D consists of these 4 teams with England being the -3300 favorite to win the group, followed by Denmark at +1200, China at +4000, then Haiti in last at +8000. This group has a very clear cut favorite here with England and for good reason as England did win the last Euro Cup just a year ago, but the books think no team in this group can come close to touching England and that is simply not the case here. China and Haiti do not have much of a chance of getting out of this group but the other team that is favored to qualify, Denmark, definitely has an outside chance of winning this group over England. England is ranked 4th in the world after winning the 2022 Euro Cup as well as the CONMEBOL UEFA Cup of Champions, but despite all of the wins they have been racking up recently, they have not been winning a lot of their matches convincingly as they are just finding ways to win and even needed more than 90 mins to get past some of the stronger teams they have seen in these major competitions. Denmark has not had the same success in recent major competitions but they are still ranked 13th in the world and have been climbing the rankings lately with a string of great performances. Denmark also has a very strong squad with a lot of their starting players coming from the top 3 teams in the Women’s Super League so they are definitely a threat in this tournament. Since the other 2 teams in this group are much weaker as well, there is a very good chance that this is another situation in which the group winner comes down to this match and anything can happen, especially if goal differential has to come into play. The value in this group is with Denmark to win the group at +1200 as this is just too much value for a very good quality Denmark team.  Group G - Argentina, Italy, South Africa, Sweden: Group G consists of these 4 teams with Sweden being the -600 favorite to win the group, followed by Italy at +550, Argentina at +1600, then South Africa in last at +6600. Sweden is the clear favorite to win this group and for good reason as they have one of the best teams in the world. Sweden is ranked 3rd in the world but they also have a very good history of going deep into this competition as they won the bronze at the last World Cup and have placed 3rd in 2 of the last 3 World Cups as well. The value here is not in the group winner but instead is with a team to qualify. Italy is a big -450 favorite to qualify but they are only ranked 16th in the world as this is not a very strong group with the teams in it, other than Sweden. Argentina is ranked 28th in the World and were not able to do much in the last Copa America as they picked up losses to both Brasil and Colombia, but beating Italy is a very different story. Italy has not been in good form coming into this tournament as they have been losing a lot of their games. They also disappointed heavily the last time they were in a major competition as they failed to make it out of the group stage of the 2022 Euro Cup, losing 2 of their matches and drawing 1. Argentina did not come away with the trophy in the last Copa America but they still performed well in the tournament and have been in very good form coming into this tournament. This could be another situation where the team that qualifies comes down to this match and considering that they play each other on the 1st matchday as well, Argentina could easily catch Italy off guard here with them coming into the tournament in such bad form and that 1 result could be detrimental in a group where only 3 matches are played. The value in this group is with Argentina to qualify at +333. Group H - Colombia, Germany, South Korea, Morocco: Group H consists of these 4 teams with Germany being the -2000 favorite to win the group, followed by Colombia at +1200, South Korea at +2000, then Morocco in last at +15000. Germany is coming in as the clear favorite to win this group and for good reason as they are ranked 2nd in the world. Once again, the value is not with a group winner here but instead is with a team to qualify. Colombia comes into the tournament at -150 to qualify out of the group while South Korea is -110. South Korea is ranked higher in the FIFA Women’s rankings as they are 17th in the world while Colombia is only 25th in the world, but Colombia has been in much better form than South Korea has been in coming into this tournament. South Korea did not play well back in February at the Arnold Clark Cup as they lost all 3 of their matches and even in the East Asian Championship last year, they lost to Japan, drew with China, and their only win in the tournament came against the Chinese Taipei. Colombia has actually been in very good form from their recent matches and even in the last major competition they were in, they won every single match they played in the Copa America until the finals which they only lost 1-0 to Brasil. Colombia has a lot of momentum coming into this tournament and considering that this could be another situation where the team that qualifies comes down to this match, Colombia will have the advantage since they play each other on the 1st matchday and could catch the out of form South Korea team off guard, sending them into a spiral for the rest of the tournament as they try to chase points. The value in this group is with Colombia to qualify at -150.

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2023 FIFA Women's World Cup Futures

Tuesday, Jun 27, 2023

July is right around the corner meaning the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand is less than a month away so it is time to see which teams have the best chance at lifting the trophy in August. The FIFA Women’s World Cup started in 1991 with 8 tournaments being held since then, USA winning the most trophies with 4, followed by Germany next with 2, then both Japan and Norway with 1 each. USA is the current defending champion of the competition, winning the last 2 World Cups.  To Win Outright USA +250: USA is coming into this World Cup as the biggest favorite on the board and for very good reason as they have won the competition the most of any nation and they are the back to back defending champions as well. USA has been in great form coming into this competition, they have 1 more friendly match against Wales before the tournament starts but they have won 8 straight matches in all competitions, including all 3 of their meaningful matches in the SheBelieves Cup back in February. They also rolled every team they played in their tournament prior, winning the CONCACAF Women’s Championship without allowing a single goal in any of their matches. USA has some of the best players in the world on their squad and they will surely be one of the toughest teams to take out of the competition this World Cup. England +450: England is coming into this competition as the next likely to win the competition according to the books and England is also a team that has been in very good form recently. They are the champions of Europe after winning the last Women’s Euro Cup and they also won the CONMEBOL UEFA Cup of Champions this past April, beating Brasil is penalties after a 1-1 draw. England does have a very impressive resume coming into the tournament and they also have some of the best players on their squad from the best teams of the English Women’s Super League, but England definitely has not been as dominant against some of the better teams in the World and there was not even an English team in the Women’s Champions League finals either. On their way to winning the Euro Cup, they needed extra time to get past Spain and also in the finals to beat Germany. Even in their win of the CONMEBOL UEFA Cup of Champions, they drew 1-1 with Brasil and needed penalties to win that one. At some point the luck will run out for this English squad and they will get bested by a better side.  Spain +600: Spain is coming into this competition as the next likely to win it according to the books and although their resume is definitely not as impressive as the 2 teams more favored, they still have a very good squad with some of the best players in Europe on their team. Spain definitely disappointed at the Women’s Euro Cup, losing to both Germany and England in the tournament, but they have been in very good form since then. They still have 2 more friendlies scheduled against Panama and Denmark before the World Cup starts but they have won 7 of their last 8 matches and their starting players have also been performing very well at the club level. A good majority of this Spanish starting XI is from FC Barcelona and Barcelona not only dominated their domestic league winning 27 straight league matches before finally losing 1 and drawing 1 in their last 3 of the season, but they also won the Women’s Champions League back on June 3rd, beating Wolfsburg 3-2 in the final. Spain may not have done as well as they wanted to in the last Euro Cup but their players have been in great form recently and will be hungry to perform well at the World Cup.  Germany +700: Germany is coming into this competition as the next likely to win it according to the books and they are also a team with a very good squad that has players who have been performing very well at the club level. Just like Spain, a good majority of the players on Germany come from their 2 best teams in the German domestic league, Bayern Munich and Wolfsburg. Both of these teams had very good domestic seasons only separated by 2 points with Bayern winning the title while Wolfsburg finished 2nd in the league and went all the way to the finals of the Women’s Champions League, losing to Barcelona in that match. Their players have been playing well but the team has not been playing well together recently. They have been winning a lot of their friendlies but they have struggled against the better teams they have to face, losing to USA and Brasil as well as drawing with Sweden in their last 5 matches. They also performed very well in the last Euro Cup, until they ran into England where they were once again beaten by a better team. Germany does have a very good squad with good quality players but they have struggled in the past against stronger teams and that will be a problem for them in this tournament. France +1000, Sweden +1600, Netherlands +2500: There are some very good European sides that come next on the list but like a few of the other teams already talked about, these 3 teams do not have a very good chance as they will eventually run into a much stronger team that they will struggle to get by. England, Spain, and Germany are the 3 strongest teams from Europe and it is hard to see any other European nation that is not them making a deep run in this tournament.  Dark Horses Australia +1200: Australia comes in at +1200 to win the competition and they do have a very good team that is ranked 10th overall in the World in the FIFA rankings. Australia also has home advantage as they are one of the host nations but they are a team that has recently struggled against teams in their own AFC competitions and they do not have the talent to compete with some of the stronger teams in the tournament.  Japan +2500: Japan is coming into this competition at +2500 to win it all and they are a team that has struggled in recent AFC competitions as well as losing 2 of their 3 matches in the SheBelieves Cup back in February. They have even slipped outside the top 10 of the FIFA World rankings but the one thing they do have going for them is that they have won the competition before and they were the last team to do so before USA won the last 2 World Cups. They were also in the 2015 final which they lost to USA so they always have that experience with them.  Brasil +2500: Brasil is coming into this competition at +2500 to win it all but they have not been in good form recently, losing their last 3 matches in meaningful competitions. They were awful in the SheBelieves Cup back in February, beating Japan but losing to USA and Canada, and then they followed up in April by losing the CONMEBOL UEFA Cup of Champions. They were not awful in that loss though as they drew 1-1 losing in penalties and they did win the Copa America to get there, winning all 6 of their matches in Copa America and allowing no goals in the whole competition.  RecommendationsThere are quite a few teams in this tournament that have good quality players that will be trying to make a deep run but when push comes to shove there can only be one winner. USA and Spain are the 2 best choices to win the World Cup, USA at +250 being the favorite to win it and rightly so as they are the most decorated team and have been in the best form, but also Spain at +600 has some value due to the performance of their players at the club level recently. As for dark horses, Brasil is the best team to take as a longshot at the +2500 as there is a lot of value there for the best team in South America. 

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Lionel Messi: What’s Next?

Saturday, May 27, 2023

There has been a lot of speculation about what move is next for the Argentine footballer Lionel Messi as his contract with Paris Saint-Germain is set to expire this summer. Messi just won the 2022 World Cup in Qatar with Argentina this past December and now after just 2 years of playing in France, will be on the move once again.  Where To?Taking a look at the oddsmakers, the books have quite a few possible clubs that Messi could sign with this summer if looking to wager on it but there are 3 clubs that really stand out as the 3 favorites. These 3 clubs that have the best chance of signing Messi are Barcelona from La Liga, Al Hilal Riyadh from the Saudi Pro League, and Inter Miami from the MLS. Inter Miami is listed at +600 and is the least likely to sign him of these 3 clubs, but there has been talks for years about Messi joining Miami in a move to the MLS and it simply has not happened yet as Messi feels like he can still play at a very competitive level. This leaves us with only 2 possibilities of where Messi could be headed in the summer and PSG is definitely not one of them as there is no reasonable scenario that would see Messi wearing a PSG kit once again come fall. The only 2 realistic options for Messi to go to this summer would be to either reunite with his former club Barcelona in La Liga, or to ink a deal with Al Hilal Riyadh in the Saudi Pro League, and there is a clear favorite here despite the oddsmakers having both Barcelona and Al Hilal Riyadh listed at -110.It all started back in December during the 2022 Qatar World Cup when Cristiano Ronaldo was dealing with issues at Manchester United which forced him to leave the club and as a result, he was offered a deal from Al Nassr to play in the Saudi Pro League which he took after Portugal was eliminated from the World Cup. Ronaldo was the 1st piece of the puzzle in a Saudi Pro League looking to expand and create more excitement by attracting some of the world’s biggest stars, and they have done nothing but gain steam since inking that deal with Ronaldo. Flash forward to a few weeks ago when a possible future with PSG was ruled out once and for all as PSG handed Messi a suspension for an unauthorized trip to Saudi Arabia to talk with the club Al Hilal Riyadh. It is very clear by now that Al Hilal Riyadh is the clear favorite to get the World Cup winning star this summer and the books tend to agree with their line movement that has been very telling. Back in January after Ronaldo signed with Al Nassr, the books still did not take this club seriously as Al Hilal Riyadh was listed as a +800 to land Messi in the summer. Then, just a few weeks ago before receiving his suspension, the odds had moved down to +300 for him to sign with the Saudi club. Now we are at the end of the European seasons after Messi was handed his suspension from PSG and the odds have Al Hilal Riyadh listed at -110 with Barcelona when Barcelona was -200 just a few weeks ago. Lionel Messi’s transfer to the Saudi Pro League has been doing nothing but gaining steam over the last few months and at this point in time, it pretty much feels inevitable that he is going to sign with Al Hilal Riyadh come fall.  The ComplicationsAt first glance, the possibility of Messi reuniting with Barcelona seems like the most reasonable avenue for him to go, but in reality, there are a lot of complications that are preventing this from happening, leading to Al Hilal Riyadh being the move that makes the most sense. Barcelona recently got themselves caught up in a lot of financial issues this year and after all of the signings they made last summer, but were already unable to register all of their players, they now find themselves over 200 million Euros above what their payroll should be for next season. Finding the money to pay off the outstanding balance will be no easy task though as they must pay that down just to get to their max payroll and will still have to sell players after that to be able to buy once again. All of their transactions are also going to be under a microscope after La Liga launched a corruption investigation on Barcelona’s finances this past year. Furthermore, Messi is at the backend of his career and as much as he still wants to play competitively in Champions League, he is also more focused on enjoying the game with his friends which is why he put in a request to Barcelona to sign his World Cup teammates, both Angel Di Maria and Leandro Paredes, which complicates things even more as Bracelona will barely have the money to sign Messi let alone 2 of his friends. Another issue that Messi is dealing with is the fact that he may get no say at all in where he goes as his father is his agent and his father is a man that is very driven by money. Al Hilal Riyadh has made such a lucrative offer that the financially unstable Barcelona will never be able to match and that might just be enough to tip his father in the direction of the Saudi Pro League.This also makes more sense as Al Hilal Riyadh has a lot more money to spend and would have no issues signing both Messi and di Maria, as well as also signing Messi’s good friend and former Barcelona teammate Sergio Busquets who is set to leave Barcelona this summer.  What It Means For The SportLet’s get something straight here, Messi will not be going to the Saudi Pro League to play with Ronaldo, he will be going to play against Ronaldo and revive their old La Liga rivalry there. For the Saudi Pro League, this could be a very exciting time for viewers as bigger stars come to the league and try to grow the league even more.As for the rest of the world, the change does not really have a massive impact on the big clubs in Europe. Both Messi and Ronaldo have had such great careers and as good as both players still are, neither player is going to have the massive impact on a team that they would have had a few years ago. Seeing the departure of Messi and Ronaldo from Europe could also be a positive as it sets the stage for younger stars to make their way through such as Mbappe, Haaland, and Rashford just to name a few.In conclusion, a move to the Saudi Pro League can only be good for the world of football and it is the move that by far makes the most sense for Messi so expect to see Lionel Messi in an Al Hilal Riyadh kit come this fall.

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Why Expansion Is Becoming A Problem In the MLS

Thursday, May 25, 2023

The MLS just announced a brand new expansion team in San Diego to debut in the year 2025 but the MLS is now reaching a point where expansion is becoming a big problem for a league that is not growing fast enough to sustain all of these changes. San Diego will be the 30th team coming into the MLS but there are still plenty of cities looking to win their bid for a team and it looks like San Diego will definitely not be the last expansion team to enter the MLS. The larger the league gets though, the bigger the issue becomes and these are just a few of the reasons why continuing to expand will not be good for producing a better product on the pitch. Scheduling ParityOne of the issues that will continue to grow in the MLS is the scheduling parity and equality of strength of schedule within the league. Most soccer leagues around the world are designed so every team has a very fair schedule that is not stronger or weaker than anyone else. This is usually done by having every team play each other twice, one home match and one away match for each, so that every team has the exact same schedule and this is achieved by ideally having a league with 20 teams or less. The MLS has now blown past that mark though and it has seriously affected the strength of schedule for some of these teams as there are not enough matches in the season for everyone to play each other twice. Furthermore, they have tried to cut down on travel for some of these teams by having teams play more matches against teams more geographically close to them, but doing this has hurt weaker teams who constantly have to see a dominant team in the region more than they should have to. Travel has become another big issue with the scheduling as North America is a very large continent from East to West with many different time zones that plays a part in the way matches are scheduled for certain teams, which again leads to an uneven strength of schedule. Also, by having a 30 team league, it causes a cluster in the scheduling for the times of the matches as the league wants each match to start at the same time locally for each city and usually all on the same day as well, but this hurts the growth of the league when it comes to neutral followers wanting to just catch a game but now need 15 screens to watch every team and have no action to follow the next day as a majority of the games tend to be on one day. CompetitivenessAnother issue that the MLS is now dealing with is the competitiveness of the league itself. Most leagues offer some kind of incentives to win matches and be dominant in the league with promotion and relegation but this is something that does not exist in the MLS and will lead to problems in competition if the league continues to expand. In most soccer leagues around the world, there are good teams and there are bad teams but you never get to really know the bad teams too well as they drop down to lower leagues if they cannot keep up with the level of play of being in Division 1. The MLS lacks this incentive though and like most North American sports they actually incentivize losing by having a draft. By having no relegation to a lower league, the MLS is now dealing with the same systemic losing that certain franchises go through when owners are unwilling to spend money and invest in the team. This leads to a bad product on the pitch and less interest from supporting groups which then causes a franchise to be on the verge of collapse when this league should be moving the other way. One of the great things about having relegation is the excitement it brings for the bad teams in the league as the final few matches become very important to staying in the league and cause teams to play better which leads to more exciting games. The MLS has the complete opposite though as bad teams tend to tank for draft picks making the last few matches of the season pretty much pointless for certain franchises. The absence of relegation has also led to a disinterest in their lower leagues and the MLS has pretty much rendered the USL useless as a league as there will never be any room for teams to move up unless they pay a massive expansion fee which is not always possible for smaller markets that still get plenty of fan support. Solution To The ProblemThe MLS can continue to expand to have as many teams as they would like but the reality is that they will never be taken seriously as a soccer league on the world stage if they do not make some serious changes to the entire structure of the league. Star players will continue to come to the MLS in the later stages of their career only as a safety league knowing they can never be relegated on their team and their job will always be safe. The MLS really needs to be stripped down from top to bottom and rebuilt entirely as a league but there is still another way to fix this before it is too late.The best solution to fix an expanding MLS would actually be to expand the league to 40 teams but split it up into 2 leagues of 20 teams and make them more East and West oriented to cut down on travel for a lot of these clubs. This would fix the scheduling issues leading to a schedule that is more fair for every team. This would also lead to a revitalized competitiveness for the Supporters Shield but also keep the North American style playoff format where the 2 leagues would only play each other for the MLS Cup.Finally, promotion and relegation must be added or there are always going to be tanking teams for draft picks as well as very good teams in the USL that play at an MLS level but will never have any avenue into the league making the entire USL itself as a league pointless. Promotion and relegation is the one thing that North America may never buy into but it is simply needed to fix the issues and until it is implemented in the league, there will always be franchises of systemic losing with no way out of it.

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UEFA Europa Conference League Futures 2022/23

Friday, Apr 28, 2023

The semi finals for the UEFA Europa Conference League have been set to start on May 11 with the finals set for June 7 and we are finally down to the final four teams where someone is going home with the Conference League trophy. The 2 semi finals of this competition will both be 2-leg rounds, each team getting a home match, while the finals will be a single leg match on a neutral site in Prague, Czechia. Now that the competition has been whittled down to 4 contenders, it is time to see who has the best chance of winning the title by picking an outright winner here. To Win Outright West Ham +175: West Ham is coming into this semi final as the favorite to win the entire tournament. They have been a very bad team in the Premier League all season as they have been struggling just to stay above relegation all year, but they have been a very dominant team in this competition in every single match they have played in, even when they were in awful form in the Premier League they were still great in the Conference League. They have also started to turn their form around in the Premier League recently as they are making a push to get away from relegation but they have been in much better form overall over the last few weeks. They have a lot of good talent on their team and should be much higher in the Premier League table than the way they have performed this year but they are starting to perform well now and that makes them a very dangerous threat in this tournament. Their form in this competition has been great all year but if they are playing better now in the Premier League as well, then they are going to have a lot of confidence here as they are in the best form they have been in all season. All that being said, they still have a very tough road ahead of them to winning this competition as they will have to face either Fiorentina or Basel in the finals who are both very good, but also this AZ Alkmaar side is no push over either. AZ Alkmaar is currently sitting in 4th place in their domestic league in the Netherlands and they have already taken out some quality teams in this competition like Anderlecht in the last round and Lazio in the round prior. West Ham may be the best team left in this competition but getting through the semi finals in a 2 leg round is going to be very tough and they still have to win the finals in a neutral location after that. Fiorentina +187: Fiorentina is coming into this semi final as the next biggest favorite to win the entire competition. They have been very strong in this competition all year as they went 4-1-1 in the group stage and they were even better once the knockouts started as they won 5 of their 6 matches. They have also held nothing back in this tournament as they have won matches in the 2nd leg of their rounds even when they had a big lead from the 1st leg and they have also been getting better as a team overall. They have performed well in the Conference League all year but they have also been very good in their domestic league recently as they have easily been the hottest team in Italy over the last few weeks. Their defense has been good all year but their attack has been on fire with scoring goals recently and they have already been playing with the mentality of going for the win and holding nothing back in their matches. Fiorentina also plays in a very good Serie A league as the Italian league is on its way back to the top being one of the best leagues in Europe as they have 2 teams in the Champions League semi finals, 2 teams in the Europa League semi finals, and Fiorentina in the Conference League semi finals. Fiorentina also has a lot of good teams in front of them in Italy as they are in 10th place right now and might not make it into a European spot for next year so they are only going to be more motivated to win this competition as it will secure them a spot for next year in Europa League at least. Fiorentina is also facing Basel in the semi finals which is the weakest of the 4 teams left by far so they have a much easier road to the trophy as they should get by Basel with no issues and will only have the finals to worry about. AZ Alkmaar +333: AZ Alkmaar is coming into this semi final as the team with the 3rd best chance of winning this competition but they are currently sitting in 4th place in their domestic league in the Netherlands and they are no push over team. They have already kicked out some good teams in this competition, most notably their win over Lazio in the knockout round which they won both legs 2-1 and have won 3 of their 4 matches in the knockout stages while also going 5-0-1 in the group stage. AZ Alkmaar has shown they can win matches against good teams away from home, they are going to have a much tougher match against West Ham here but, they have also shown how good they are at home and will use their home leg as a way to get a big advantage in this series. Their home leg is also going to be the 2nd leg so if they can manage a result or even a 1 goal loss in England, they will be in a very good position to win it in the 2nd leg back at home. AZ Alkmaar has a chance to get by in this round but they still have to take out the best team in this competition who has been playing in much better form recently and even if they do somehow get past West Ham here, they still have a big finals match to win against another good team.  Basel +500: Basel is coming into this semi final as the team with the least chance to win the entire competition and that is a very fair evaluation of this team. Basel used to be a very dominant team in Switzerland for years but they have really fallen off over the last few years and have been struggling to win matches in their own domestic league all season as they currently sit in 6th place out of 10 teams in their league. Not only have they struggled in their own domestic league this year, but they have also struggled a lot in the Conference League every step of the way. They were only 3-2-1 in the group stage of the Conference League and finished 2nd place in their group which caused them to play 2 extra playoff matches against Trabzonspor to get into the knockout stages and now they have scraped and clawed their way into the semi finals by getting through the knockout stages with only 1 win in their 6 matches. Basel is lucky to have made it this far in the tournament but the reality is that this is not a very good team and they are going to show it here when they are eliminated from the semi finals. Basel has no chance to go on and win the Conference League title.  The PredictionAfter looking at everything with these 4 clubs left in the competition, West Ham may be the best team when it comes to talent left in the tournament, but they have a much tougher road to the finals and Fiorentina has been playing very well in this competition like West Ham but have also performed much better as a team overall in these last few weeks. Fiorentina at +187 will win the UEFA Europa Conference League Title this year.

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Brasileiro Série A Futures 2023

Friday, Apr 28, 2023

European leagues are beginning to wind down now as we are in the final stretch of the season in Europe but South America is just kicking off their next season for the year and it is time to discuss possible futures on who will be lifting the Brasileiro Série A Title this season. Palmeiras are the reigning champions of the league from last season and are already the big favorites to win it all again, but let’s see if there are any other contenders that can give the reigning champs a run for their money this year. To Win Outright Palmeiras +175: Palmeiras is coming into the season as the favorites to win the title once again as they are the champions from last season. They won the league by 9 points as they had a huge lead by the 2nd half of the season and that is including the fact that they had to juggle Copa Libertadores matches as well, a competition they went very deep in. They will have Copa Libertadores to focus on once again but it might be a competition they are more focused on this year as they have won it 2 of the last 3 years and are coming off of a season where they did not even make the finals. Considering that they won the league title last year, they will likely be more focused on winning Copa Libertadores which could affect their league matches negatively later in the season, but this is also the best team in South America when it comes to talent right now and they have the depth to make a deep run in both competitions. Palmeiras is the team to beat right now, not only in Brasil but in all of South America so it would not be shocking at all to see them win the title and the Copa Libertadores trophy. There is not a lot of value here at +175 but it is still a very good bet as this is the best team in all of South America. Flamengo +275: Flamengo is coming into this season as the next favorite on the board to win the league title and they had a very good season last year in the league while also going on to win Copa Libertadores. They managed to pull out the Copa Libertadores win last season but they were not playing well in the league near the end of the season and this form has carried over as they have not been playing well over the last few months in their state leagues. They also looked awful in the Club World Cup matches they played in as this is a team that has been on the decline for a few months going back to the end of the last calendar year. Flamengo still has a lot of talent on their team and they are going to be one of the better teams in Brasil this year, but they simply do not have the depth and talent to win this league while also focusing on defending their Copa Libertadores Title. Flamengo will continue to drop points in silly spots and their recent form coming into the season will also have a lasting impact on where they end up in the table near the end of the season. This is simply not Flamengo’s year as they need to replenish some of their older talent and there is no real value on them to win the league title at this price.  Fluminense +450: Fluminense is coming into the season as the next favorite on the board here and they are a club that has been improving a lot over the last year. They improved their team a lot last season which allowed them to go on a big run which saw themselves finishing in 3rd place in the table. They also have a very strong home advantage as they rarely drop points on their own pitch and that will go a long way in this league the way they are taking advantage of their home matches. They had the 4th best home record in the league last year as they were averaging around 1 goal allowed per match there and scoring over 2 goals per match, but they also had the 2nd best away record and they are going to be a real force this season. Fluminense has been building a very good team and things are finally all in place for this club to go on some big unbeaten runs this year and be one of the more dominant teams in the league. Fluminense was making a lot of waves at the end of the season last year as they went on a big run to put themselves in 3rd place, but this is going to be their year where they are a real contender to win this title and compete with the best in Brasil all season. There is a lot of value in this Fluminense side to win the title this season as they are one of the best teams in Brasil coming into the season.  Atlético Mineiro +900: Atlético Mineiro is coming into this season as the next biggest favorite to win the league title but there is quite a big drop off between them and the next team favored to win it all. Atlético Mineiro won the league title just 2 years ago back in 2021, but this team has fallen a long way from where they were 2 years ago. They took a big dive last season, just 1 year after winning the league title, as they finished in 7th place in the league and even fizzled out of Copa Libertadores very early in the competition. They are a club that has been on the decline for a while now as they still look to replenish their aging talent and they are going to have a very difficult time this year with their depth trying to balance both league matches and Copa Libertadores matches. Atlético Mineiro may be the 4th favorite on the list to win this title but the reality is that they have no real shot at even finishing in the top 4 of the league this year. This is a club that is going to continue declining until they make some serious moves for better players and it is going to show in their league performance this season. There is no value at all in Atlético Mineiro to win the league title this year.  Internacional +2000: Internacional is coming into the season as the next favorite on the board to win the league title this year and they are coming off of a very good season where they came out of nowhere to finish in 2nd place. This is a team with a lot of talent and they really take advantage of their home matches which is very important in this league. They had the best home record in Brasil last year and they are going to be a real title threat here if they continue to take advantage of those home matches. They are also going to be in Copa Libertadores which is a competition they have not performed well in recently, but that could also work to their advantage here as it did last season since they were a much better team in the league near the end of the year when they only had league matches to focus on. An early Copa Libertadores exit would actually help this team’s chances at winning the title and it is very possible that they become a new threat in the league this year after the season they had last year. Internacional is not the best team in this league but they are definitely one of the better teams and if things fall the right way for them along with continuing their home dominance in matches, they will be a top 4 team once again by the end of the season. Internacional does have some value at this price to win the league as a dark horse. Corinthians +2500: Corinthians is coming into the season as the next team on this list to win the title but this is a very underwhelming club that has not performed up to their expectations year after year recently. They have been a top 5 team in the league over the last few years but they never seem to climb higher than 4th place in the table, where they finished last season, and they do not have the talent on their side to compete with the best teams in Brasil. Defensively, this is a very good team that does not allow many goals and will definitely make teams work hard for the win, but their attack is also abysmal as they do not score a lot of goals in their matches and that is a huge problem in a league that has some very strong attacking teams. They usually struggle to come back in games if their defense lets them down by allowing a goal and that is not the recipe to winning in this league as you need a much more balanced team that can defend well but also scores goals. Corinthians is no threat at all to win this league title and they will be lucky to even finish in the top 4 this year with some of the other teams in this league this year. There is no value in Corinthians to win the title.  Athletico Paranaense +2800: Athletico PR is not the next team on the list to win the title as they are a little more down but they deserve an honorable mention here as they do have a very good team. They finished in 6th place in the table last season and have been improving a lot as a team over the last year. They finished 6th place in the league but also made a very deep run in Copa Libertadores as they went all the way to the finals where they lost to Flamengo. Athletico PR does not really have the talent to sustain a good enough season that will win them the title but they are definitely one of the better teams in Brasil this year and could easily see themselves in the top 4 by the end of the season. There is not a lot of value in this team winning the league title as it is very unlikely they have a chance, but there is a lot of value in them finishing top 4 at +400 so they are getting an honorable mention here. RecommendationsThere are a lot of good teams in Brasil this year that will be fighting for the Brasil Série A Title but only a few have a real shot at winning this league title as it is a very long season with plenty of other competitions sprinkled in so only the truly good and balanced teams can make a deep run. A few of the good teams in Brasil will still be good this year but are on the decline and it is best to avoid those clubs while sticking with the more consistent teams. Palmeiras at +175 and Fluminense at +450 have the best value for teams to win the title as these are the 2 strongest teams in Brasil this year overall and each of these sides can go on long sustained unbeaten runs but also have the depth to play many matches in multiple competitions. Internacional at +2000 also has some value in it as they finished 2nd place and have the potential to end up very high in the table if things break their way all year. The teams with the best value here to win the Brasil Série A Title this year are Palmeiras at +175, Fluminense at +450, and Internacional at +2000 as a dark horse. 

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Euro Cup Qualifying 2024

Wednesday, Mar 29, 2023

The qualifying matches for the 2024 Euro Cup have already started with this last international break passing and every team has already played at least 1 or 2 of their 6-8 matches depending on the team and the group they are in. Not every group has value in it with some of the powerhouse teams in these groups being leagues above the rest of the group, but there is still plenty of value to be found in some of these. After watching these first 2 matchdays it is time to see which teams have some value when it comes to group betting in these qualifiers. Group Betting Props Group D Winner - Croatia -138: Croatia is currently tied with Wales in their group at 4 points after 2 matches but they are coming off of a very good World Cup campaign where they won the bronze medal and they have already looked very fierce in these first 2 matches. They allowed a late goal in their 1st match against Wales which gave them the 1-1 draw but they followed up with a dominant performance in Turkey with a 2-0 win and they are by far the best team in this group. Wales is tied for 1st place right now but they are not a very good team as they have a weak attack that struggles to score goals and it really showed in their last match with just a 1-0 win at home against Latvia. Turkey has a much stronger team than Wales does so Wales will be lucky to even qualify as Turkey is the better team and more deserving of the 2nd place spot, only 1 point behind Wales as well. Turkey was not able to compete with Croatia on their own home pitch though and that is going to be huge as it shows Croatia is still the strongest and most dominant team in this group both defensively and with their attack. Group E Winner - Czechia -110: Czechia is a slight favorite to top this group right now as they currently lead with 4 points after 2 matches and they already have a 3-1 win over Poland who is the next best team in the group as it stands. Czechia looked really good in their home match against Poland but struggled to score at all in their away match against Moldova. Lucky for them though, Poland has also struggled to score goals in their matches as they are coming off of a very poor World Cup campaign and they struggled to score in their home match against Albania as well as they only won 1-0 in what should have been a better match for them. Czechia and Poland do play again near the end of the group stage but it may not even matter by then and Czechia already has a big advantage with the win in case it does get close. Czechia may have the same scoring troubles as Poland in their away matches but they have shown many times that they can score goals at home and they are going to really take advantage of their home matches in this group. Poland has already shown their struggles on attack in these last 2 matches as well as in the World Cup and besides Lewandowski striking they really have no support around him. Poland has been on the decline recently and Czechia has a much better team overall making them the best candidate to win this group. Group F Top 2 Finish - Sweden +137: Sweden is currently sitting in 3rd place in their group as they are tied with Belgium at 3 points but they have a very good chance at coming back in this group and taking one of those qualifying spots. Sweden has 3 points from their 2 matches as they were embarrassed at home by Belgium in their 1st match but they followed up with a dominant performance against Azerbaijan, winning that match at home 5-0. Austria is currently leading the group right now with 6 points from 2 matches but they also had the luxury of playing the 2 worst teams in the group to start off and both of those matches were at home as well. They beat Azerbaijan 4-1 at home and beat Estonia 2-1 at home but even in these home matches where they should be a better team, they allowed the 2 worst teams in the group to each score a goal on them. That is going to be troublesome for Austria as they still have 2 matches left against the 2 tougher teams in the groups as well as 2 away matches against each of the weaker teams so their schedule only gets tougher from here. Sweden did not allow Azerbaijan to score on them at home and they were also able to score 5 goals in that match which shows how strong their attack can be but also how their defense is much better than Austria and that will be key in this group. Belgium is the obvious favorite to win this group and they will likely do so leaving just the 2nd place spot up for grabs but regardless, Sweden will finish higher in the group than Austria and they will be the team to qualify. Belgium is not the team they used to be either so there is always a chance that they collapse and finish out of the top 2 but Sweden will definitely be one of the teams to finish in the top 2 in this group.  Group G Winner - Serbia -125: Serbia is the slight favorite to win this group and they are currently sitting in 1st place with 6 points from 2 matches. Hungary is the only real threat in this group as they are the slight underdog here but are also sitting in 2nd place in the group with 3 points from only 1 match played. Hungary still has more matches to play including 2 matches against Serbia still and it is going to be very close but this will come down to whoever can steal some points from their away matches. Lithuania and Bulgaria are both teams that are not very good but Montenegro is not nearly as bad and they play teams tough when they are at home. Serbia dominated their match in Montenegro and still struggled to score goals in that match but eventually they found the net twice to pull off the 2-0 win and that could be huge in this group as Hungary has only played 1 of their 8 matches and that 1 match was at home as well. Serbia also has a very strong attack that can score goals in their matches and their defense has really been improving a lot. Serbia was also in the last World Cup while Hungary missed that competition and the talent level on Serbia is also just better. This will be a very close group in the end but Serbia is the better team here and they will win this group. Group H Top 2 Finish - Slovenia -138: Slovenia is currently leading this group with 6 points from 2 matches and even though they will likely not keep that spot at the top of the group, they have given themselves a great advantage with this strong start and are in a great position to stay ahead of the pack and qualify. They are in one of the larger groups with 6 teams instead of 5 but their group is also filled with a lot of mediocre teams. Denmark is the clear favorite here and even though they have only collected 3 points from 2 matches, they still looked like the best team in the group and will likely make a turnaround. The rest of the group is wide open though with teams like Finland, Northern Ireland, Kazakhstan, and San Marino. None of these teams are very good teams and they all have a similar issue of troubles with their attack when it comes to scoring goals and struggling in their away matches as well. Other than Denmark, all of these teams are going to play more defensive styles in their matches as they all struggle to score goals and play well in their away matches, and that is going to be a huge issue as it will lead to more draws with each other so the big lead that Slovenia has with their 6 points right now could really help them in the future of this group. Slovenia has also been improving over the last year as they are winning more matches and have been climbing in the UEFA competitions so they really do have the best chance of finishing in the top 2 here and qualifying from this group. Group J Top 2 Finish - Bosnia & Herzegovina +100: Bosnia is currently sitting in 3rd place in their group with 3 points from 2 matches and they have 2 teams ahead of them right now but still have a very good chance of making a comeback in this group. Portugal is leading the group with 6 points from 2 matches and no team will likely be catching them with the talent they have so that only leaves 2nd place up for grabs as Slovakia is currently occupying that spot with 4 points from their 2 matches. Slovakia did earn 3 points from their match at home against Bosnia and that is going to be huge in this group, but they also struggled to score against Luxembourg at home as they came away with a 0-0 draw in that match and they have yet to play an away match in this group. Slovakia does not have a very strong team and they have actually been slipping more and more over the last year. They are going to fall flat on their face in some of these away matches which will leave the door open for Bosnia to take advantage of these matches against some of the weaker teams and they will also be able to get that 3 points back against Slovakia at home. Bosnia has the better team with more talent and they have the best chance in this group at finishing in 2nd place and qualifying.

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Copa Libertadores Futures 2023

Wednesday, Mar 29, 2023

The Copa Libertadores has finished with their qualifying stages and now the groups are set as the group stage will be starting on April 4th. Flamengo is the defending Champions of this competition but there are many good teams across South America this year and it is very difficult to win this competition B2B as it has only happened 1 time in the last 20 years. With the group stages set it is now time to see which teams have a real shot at making a deep run in this tournament.To Win Outright Flamengo +333: Flamengo is the defending Champions of this competition from last year and they have a very good record in recent years as they have won 2 of the titles in the last 4 years and have made the finals in 3 of those years as well. They did not have a great season in Brasil though as they only finished in 5th place and they were awful in the Club World Cup as they lost in the semi finals. This team still has a lot of quality players in the squad but they are also an aging team and are definitely not what they were in past years. Flamengo always has a chance to go deep in this tournament as they are a very big club in Brasil and they also tend to really focus on their matches in this competition, but there are still plenty of better teams than them and it will be tough for them to repeat this year. Palmeiras +350: Palmeiras is coming into the group stage as the next biggest favorite to win the whole thing and even though they fell short last year, they have still had a lot of success in this competition over the last few years. They have actually won the title in 2 of the last 3 years, being the only team to win it in B2B years over the last 2 decades, and they will be hungry to make a deep run this year after failing to make the finals for a 3rd straight year last season. Palmeiras also had a great season in Brasil as they won the Brasileiro Serie A Title and it was not even close as they were 8 points ahead of the 2nd place team. Palmeiras still has a lot of quality players on their team and they are easily the best team in Brasil this year which is also the toughest league to play in when it comes to playing in South America. Palmeiras will also be focused more on this competition after winning the league title last year and they have a very good chance at making a deep run and winning it all. River Plate +700: River Plate is coming into this game as the 3rd biggest favorite to win this competition and the biggest favorite in the competition for clubs from Argentina. This competition has been heavily dominated by Brasilian clubs over the last few years but River Plate has had plenty of success themselves as they were the last club from Argentina to win the title back in 2018 and they even made the finals again in 2019 as they lost to Flamengo but have been the only club from Argentina to make it to the finals in this competition since then. They are coming off of a season last year where they finished 3rd place in Argentina but they did make some moves and have improved a lot already as they are off to a much better start in their domestic league this year, leading the league in points after 8 matches. This is a competition that River Plate will be heavily focused on this season after years of Brasilian dominance in the competition. They have the history in this competition as well as a very good team this year that is going to dominate Argentina so they could very well see themselves in the finals this year. River Plate has a great chance to make a deep run in this competition. Atletico Mineiro +850: Atletico Mineiro is coming into this tournament as the next biggest favorite on the board but they have been a very disappointing team over the last year. They were expected to make a much deeper run in this competition last season as they were on fire at the beginning of the year, but they fizzled out of the competition and things took a turn for the worse in their domestic league as well as they fell out of form finishing 7th place in the league. They even had to play in qualifying matches just to get to this group stage but they have been a team that has struggled away from home and has also struggled to score goals against better defenses which is going to be a problem for them in this tournament. They were trending in the wrong direction near the end of last season and they have not done much to really improve their team for this year. There are too many good teams in Brasil alone that they will struggle to get by and they will not have a great chance of making a deep run in this competition.  Boca Juniors +1000: Boca Juniors are coming into this competition as the next favorite on the board but they have not had a lot of success in this tournament over the years. They had a great season in their domestic league as they finished in 1st place but they have only made it to 1 Copa Libertadores finals over the last decade which they lost to River Plate as well. The last time Boca Juniors actually won this competition was back in 2007 and they have only made 3 appearances in the finals since then, losing every time. They are going to have a tough time getting past some of the clubs in Argentina that are better than they are and they will definitely struggle against the Brasilian powerhouses as well. Boca Juniors still has a good team but they always perform better in their domestic league than they do in this competition and they do not have a great chance of turning things around this year and making a deep run.  Corinthians +1400: Corinthians are coming into this competition as the next team on the board to win it all but they are another team that is going to struggle in this competition and will not be able to make a deep run. They only finished in 4th place in their domestic league last season as they were really starting to slip near the end of the season. They are a very good defensive team as they do not allow many goals in their matches but defense will only take you so far in this competition as these teams cannot rely on scoreless draws and hope to advance on penalties every round. Their attack is simply not strong enough to make a deep run in this competition as there are plenty of other great teams with great defense and they will struggle to break those clubs down with their attack. Their super defensive play and inability to score goals will come back to bite them in this competition as they will likely see an early exit in one of the Knockout Stages.  Fluminense +1600: Fluminense is coming into this competition as the next club on the board to win the whole thing and they are coming off of a very good season where they finished in 3rd place in Brasil but were really starting to surge near the end of the season. This team has improved a lot from previous years and they are a team that really takes advantage of their home matches which will be important in this competition. Even more important though, they had one of the best away records in Brasil last year which is going to be very important when traveling to different countries to play in these matches. They have also been a very good defensive team but also have a very potent attack and they have shown that they can hang with some of the best teams in Brasil. They do not have a good history in the competition over the last few years but they have also been a very bad team over that time as they are just starting to re-emerge as a dominant power in Brasil now. Fluminense has a very good team and they are a darkhorse in this competition to win the whole thing as they are coming off of their best season in years and are only going to get better this year. Internacional +2000: Internacional is coming into this competition as the next team on the board to win this competition and they are coming off of a very good season where they finished in 2nd place in Brasil. Internacional was also one of the better away teams in Brasil last season with the 5th best away record but they really take advantage of their home matches as they had the best home record in Brasil with a +26 goal differential as they were averaging over 2 goals scored per match there and were allowing under 1 goal per match as well. Internacional also made a pretty deep run in Copa Sudamericana as they were eliminated in the quarter finals but that really propelled them to be better as they finished their season in Brasil playing very well. Now that they are in Copa Libertadores they will be a lot more focused on winning this competition and they are a darkhorse to make a deep run here with the talent they have.  RecommendationsThere are plenty of good teams in this competition but when betting on an outright winner it is best to go with a Brasilian club as they do have the strongest domestic league in South America and they have also dominated this competition over the last few years with the last 4 straight titles as well as 5 of the last 6 being won by a Brasilian club, and the last 3 years have seen 2 Brasilian clubs in the finals every time. Flamengo is not the club they used to be and Palmeiras still has one of the best teams in South America so there is some value in Palmeiras winning this competition at +350 with the recent success they have had. Argentina does have some good clubs as well though and considering how the last 3 years have all been Brasilian clubs, River Plate will be very focused on this competition with their previous success and they have the best chance of winning the whole thing for a club from Argentina so there is value in River Plate at +700. If looking for a darkhorse to win the competition, Fluminense at +1600 and Internacional at +2000 are both great options considering how good they were last year in the toughest league in South America and they have also shown the ability to win matches away from home which is very important in these competitions. Palmeiras +350, River Plate +700, Fluminense +1600, and Internacional +2000 are the best options to go with for futures in this competition. 

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Europa League Futures (Knockout Rounds)

Thursday, Feb 09, 2023

The Group Stage is over for the Europa League but before we get into the Round of 16 there are still some knockout round play-offs to be played with the group stage runner-ups and the Champions League drop downs. From this point on there will be no more clubs added to the competition so it is time to see who is a real contender to win the Europa League title as we now know the final set of teams in the tournament which include some clubs that were not there at the start of the year. With the Knockout Stage starting soon, it is time to see who has the best value to win this competition.  To Win Outright Arsenal +350: Arsenal is coming in as the biggest favorite on the board to win this competition and they were one of the teams that started the year in Europa League and have come this far by winning their group which automatically sees them through to the Round of 16. They have a big advantage right now from winning their group as they do not have to play in this play-off round meaning there is less risk of getting eliminated compared to some of the other teams that have to play in this round. Arsenal has also been having a great year in their domestic league as they are currently leading the Premier League in points and have a chance to build an even larger lead over 2nd place before actually having to play another Europa League match in the Round of 16 which means they will be able to focus more on this competition if they can get a bit of a cushion now in the Premier League. Arsenal has shown all year with their performances against top clubs in the Premier League that they have the talent and they have the depth to make a deep run in this tournament and they are one of the best clubs left in the competition still. There is some value in Arsenal to win the title here as they are having a great year and will be looking to take home as many trophies as they can.  Barcelona +450: Barcelona is entering this as the next biggest favorite on the board to win this competition but unlike Arsenal, Barcelona was not in this tournament at the beginning of the year and ended up dropping down from Champions League after some awful performances in the group stage there. Barcelona has been having a great domestic season though as they are leading La Liga right now with a big lead over the 2nd place Real Madrid and if they continue their dominance there then they will have such a big lead in the league for the title that they will be able to focus on these Europa matches with no issues. Barcelona dropped down from Champions League though which means they do not get a spot in the Round of 16 yet but instead have to earn that spot by playing a group runner-up in this play-off round. Their matchup in this round is also against Manchester United who has been having a great domestic season playing in very good form most of the year just like Barcelona. Barcelona does have one of the best squads left in the tournament with their talent and depth but they also fizzled out badly in the Champions League group stage and considering how well Man Utd has been playing this year, they have a very tough challenge here just to get out of this round and into the Round of 16. There is some value on Barcelona here as they have the team to make a deep run if they can get past Man Utd in this round but Man Utd is no push over so they also have more of a risk as well as Barcelona could be eliminated before even reaching the Round of 16.  Manchester United +800: Man Utd is coming in as the next biggest favorite to win this competition and they are a team that did start the year in Europa League coming this far but they were not good enough in the group stage to even win their group which has now put them in this situation where they have to play in this play-off round as a group runner-up. Man Utd has been having a great domestic year as they are currently in the top 4 of the Premier League and they have a lot of talent on their team as well. They do not have a lot of squad depth though and it has really started to show recently as they are starting to pile up some injuries to key starters. This will be an issue down the line if they can make a deep run in the tournament but they also have the problem of having to play an extra match in this play-off round and they are matched up with Barcelona who is another very good club who dropped down from Champions League. It is tough to find value in Man Utd here with their injuries starting to pile up, also knowing they have to try and get through a very good club in Barcelona just to get to the Round of 16, and the road will only get harder from there. Man utd is also in the middle of a club sale this year so they were not able to do much in the transfer windows and they will be more focused on keeping their top 4 spot in the Premier League to get back into Champions League for next year and be able to buy some more talent with their new club owners in place. Man Utd has been playing very well this year and is having a great season but it is not the right situation for them this year so there is not a lot of value in them here to win this competition this year. Juventus +1000: Juventus is coming in as the next biggest favorite on the board to win this competition and they are a team that did not start the year in Europa League but instead dropped down from Champions League after a poor run in the group stage. Juventus has been dealing with many other issues this year like their road troubles and the fact that they were in 2nd place in Serie A before receiving a 15 point deduction that now put them in the middle of the table. They have a lot of adversity to overcome this year but it is likely that they will be focused on these matches since their title hopes are dashed and they will be looking to take home a trophy still. Since Juventus did drop down from Champions league they will have to play in this play-off round, but they did get a nice matchup in Nantes who is one of the worst squads left in the tournament. Juventus should be able to get past Nantes and see themselves through to the Round of 16 but they have had a big issue in their away matches this year and scoring has been one of those issues which has also spilled into their home matches as well. They have a very good defense that will be able to carry them deep but their attack will have to pick it up eventually when the strength of opponents becomes greater the deeper they go and they will not be able to overcome those issues against some of the other teams still left. Juventus does have some value here considering they are getting an easier path and will be hungry for a trophy after what happened in Serie A, but they do not have the talent to win this competition and they will fizzle out eventually.  Real Sociedad +1400: Real Sociedad is the next biggest favorite on the board to win this competition and they are a team that did start the year in Europa League. They have been a very dominant team in their Europa League matches all year and they even have an advantage here as they are already through to the Round of 16 since they won their group in the group stage, a group that also had Man Utd in it as well. Real Sociedad has not just been great in their Europa League matches though, they have also been having a great season in their domestic league as they currently sit in 3rd place and is easily the best team in La Liga behind Barcelona and Real Madrid this year. Real Sociedad is a team with a very good defense as they do not allow many goals in their matches and their defense has been great like this for years, but now their attack is also playing very well as they are scoring a lot of goals and taking big advantage of their home matches. They are well on their way to Champions League next year with a top 4 finish in La Liga likely to come for them and since their league is so heavily dominated by Barcelona and Real Madrid year after year, Real Sociedad will definitely be more focused on these matches as they have a better chance of winning this tournament than the actual La liga title. Real Sociedad has the squad to make a deep run in this tournament competing with anyone who comes across their path but they are also in the right situation to make a run this year and have one of the better teams in the competition. There is a lot of value in Real Sociedad to win the Europa League title here as they very well could go all the way and win it with their team. RecommendationsThere are quite a few teams who have the potential to make a deep run in this tournament but to win the title these clubs need to have the talent, depth, and also be in the right situation or else things can fall apart quickly. Arsenal at +350 and Barcelona at +450 have some very good value as they are both 2 of the best teams in the tournament and are in the right situations to make a deep run to win this trophy. If looking for some extra value though, Real Sociedad at +1400 has a lot of value in it since Real Sociedad is also in a great situation this year and has the team to make a deep run as they have been undervalued as a squad all year. 

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Champions League Futures (Round of 16)

Tuesday, Feb 07, 2023

The Champions League will be starting up again in February but now that we are past the group stage and all of the fake contenders are out of the competition, it is time to see who has the best chance to make a deep run in the tournament as we enter the Round of 16 soon. There are a lot of quality clubs left in the competition still but there are also some frauds still left that really have no chance of winning the title so let’s see which of these clubs is a real contender and which are just lucky to still be in the competition at the Knockout Stages. To Win Outright Manchester City +175: Man City is coming in as the biggest favorite to win the Champions League this year and that is because of the talent they have as well as the squad depth which enables them to make deep runs in competitions like this and still keep some focus on their league matches as well. Man City has been a dominant team in Europe for years now but they are still without a Champions League title and there is no doubt that they will be fully focused on winning this competition. They do have a lot of talent in their starting lineup but they also have a lot of squad depth as their backups could easily be starters somewhere else and this offers them a lot of flexibility when they get deep in these tournaments. They have not been at their best in the Premier League though and they could end up seeing themselves in a situation where they make a deep run in this competition but also have to focus on Premier League matches with a shot at the title and they will have to decide which competition to put more of their efforts towards. Man City has the team and the depth to make a deep run here and there is some value at this price with it being +175, but they have not been meeting expectations with their play this year and if they keep it up they will find a way to fizzle out of this competition as there are plenty of other good teams with a lot more value in them. Bayern Munich +650: Bayern Munich is coming in as the 2nd biggest favorite to win this competition but there is a very large gap between them and the current favorites. The gap is understandable as no team has the kind of depth that Man City has, but that does not mean they are good enough to win it all. Bayern Munich does look like they have some value here at +650 but the value is not as good as it looks. Bayern has to get through a very tough matchup in the 1st round as they are taking on PSG so already if Bayern wants to get to the finals and win it all, they have to take out one of the best teams in the competition right away and it is only going to get tougher in each matchup if they continue to advance. Bayern also has not played very well this year, they are still leading their league right now but they have not been playing well since coming back from the World Cup and they are also at a disadvantage here since their league play came back a month after everyone else. Bayern has not had the luxury of playing as many matches as these other teams in different leagues so they are still a little rusty from the time off and it has shown in their league matches. Bayern is going to have a very tough time getting past PSG in this next round alone so there really is not a lot of value here for a team with big defensive issues that has been out of form recently and could be out in the very next round. PSG +800: PSG is coming in as the next biggest favorite to win this tournament and there is definitely some value in them at this price. PSG is dominating Ligue 1 this year like they have been for years but they also just have a very good team with a lot of talent on it. They always seem to find themselves making a deep run in Champions League but get stopped somewhere in the knockout stages. Messi is coming off of a World Cup win in December though and he will be looking to add a Champions League to his trophy case this year as well so he will have this team fired up to make a deep run. PSG does have a lot of starting talent on their team but they lack in squad depth and they are going to need it now that Mbappe may miss this 1st round of matches. They also have a very tough matchup in this round as they are taking on Bayern Munich, one of the favorites to win this tournament as well, so already PSG has a very difficult road ahead of them. The road is only going to get harder the deeper they go as well and they have been dealing with a lot of squad issues this year which has played a part in some of their matches. There is value in PSG here as they have the better team with less defensive issues and should get by Bayern Munich in this round, but they will still have a very tough road ahead and may not have the squad depth once they get into deeper rounds. PSG does have a very good team though that is much better than a lot of the other teams still left in the competition so as long as PSG is still in it, they definitely have some value at this price to win it all.  Liverpool +1000: Liverpool is coming in as the next contender on the list to win the entire competition but even this line does not have enough value in it for the way Liverpool has been playing this year. Liverpool has been having an awful season as they find themselves in the middle of the table in the Premier League and even though they managed to get through to this round with a weaker group, they do not belong here and will get kicked out very soon. Liverpool is struggling to even win matches in the Premier League this year and if they continue at the rate they have been going, then they will not even finish in a high enough spot for European competition next season. The reality of Liverpool is that dealing Sadio Mane in the summer destroyed their flow of attack and this has been an issue all year as they struggle to create scoring chances. Their defense has also gone downhill a lot this year and they simply do not have the talent on their team to make a deep run this year. They also have a very tough matchup in their 1st round as they take on the defending Champions in Real Madrid who also have a lot more talent than Liverpool and have been playing much better overall. Liverpool will be lucky to get past Real Madrid in this next round and even if they manage to do that, they still have bigger things to worry about in the Premier League with the season they are having and they will end up getting knocked out somewhere down the line. There is no value in Liverpool at this price as they really have no chance of winning this competition this year. Real Madrid +1000: Real Madrid is coming in as the next contender on the list to win this competition and they are also the defending Champions League Champions from last season. Real Madrid went on a big run last year to win the Champions League title as they also won their La Liga title in Spain and had to take out quite a few top quality clubs on their way to the Champions League title as well. They did not lose a lot of talent in the summer either as this is pretty much the same core team that won it last year so they know exactly what they need to do to go deep in a competition like this and win it all. They also have a lot of squad depth on their team with some very good backups that can pick up the slack when needed. They are taking on Liverpool in this 1st round as well so they are already getting one of the weaker clubs that has been in awful form and with some of these other 1st round matchups as well, there will be a few quality clubs knocked out in this 1st round making the road easier near the end. Real Madrid is going to have the drive here to defend their title as most of the talent is still there from last year and considering how they are trailing Barcelona for the La Liga title this year, they will definitely be focused on this competition to try and win a trophy if they cannot catch Barcelona for the league title. Real Madrid is one of the best teams left in the tournament and they are being flat out disrespected at a price like this with the squad they have compared to some other teams still left. There is a lot of value in Real Madrid here. Napoli +1000: Napoli is coming in as the next favorite to win this competition and they are pretty much the last team on the board with a real chance of making a deep run and winning it all. Napoli has been having a great year out of nowhere as they were not expected to be as good as they have been yet they are just running away with the Serie A title in Italy. It is very likely that they go on to win it with the double digit lead in points they have over 2nd place and that will leave them an opportunity to focus on these Champions League matches and make a deep run in the tournament. Napoli has a lot of good talent on their team that has been breaking out this year as a collective group so it is very likely that they will end up selling some of this talent in the summer which gives them a very small window to go and win any trophy they can get their hands on. It would be the perfect scenario for them if they sold their players after winning the Serie A title and the Champions League title so they will be extremely focused on this competition as this is their best chance to win it all and might be for another long while. They have been very good defensively which will be very important as they get deeper in this competition as they do not allow many goals in their matches, but they have also had a very potent attack all year that scores a ton and they have the potential to be a very dangerous team in this competition. Napoli has a real chance to make one big push this year and win as many trophies as they can and they have easily been in the best form this year out of all the teams in Champions League still. There is a lot of value in Napoli to win this competition.  RecommendationsThere are plenty of options to go with when picking a winner here that may look very attractive but in reality there are only a few teams that have the squad along with the right situation this year to make a deep run and win this entire tournament. Man City and PSG do have some value considering their squads but they are also more risky options compared to some of these other teams. The 2 best teams to choose here to win the entire competition would be Real Madrid and Napoli as they both have a ton of value at +1000 and both teams are also playing very well this year with the right situations around them to succeed deep in this tournament. 

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La Liga Futures (Updated)

Tuesday, Jan 31, 2023

The Winter Transfer Window will be closing soon and teams have had plenty of opportunity to boost their squads with new signings that will help make a run down the final stretch of the season. According to the oddsmakers at this point in time, the La Liga title race is pretty much locked up by 1 team that is a massive favorite to win right now but in reality, we are only at the halfway point of the season for matches played and there is still lots of time for another club to make a move and go on a run taking over the lead with a long season ahead of us still. It is time to see who has a shot at this title with half the season left to go still.  To Win Outright Barcelona -334: Barcelona is the biggest favorite on the board right now to win the La Liga title this season and with odds like those they are pretty much saying that it would take a lot for another club to swoop in and take the title from Barcelona. It is hard not to love this team with all of the moves they made in the summer to bring in a lot of top talent in the World and so far it has paid off defensively as Barcelona has the best defense in La Liga this season, allowing just 6 goals in their 18 matches so far. This title race is anything but over though as Barcelona has already shown their cracks after a very poor run in Champions League, spending a ton of money to bring in some big names when they could barely afford the players and then not making it out of the group stage in Champions League which was an absolute disaster for this club. Winning Europa League means nothing to this team and at this point, winning the league title is really the only way to salvage this disaster of a season for Barcelona but they do not even have a massive lead in the table so these odds on them to win are a little mispriced right now. They are only sitting 5 points above Real Madrid in the table who is in 2nd place and that is not a very big lead at all considering there is still half a season of matches left. Barcelona has also been shedding some of their talent in this winter window as they cannot afford everyone and they have also been in a lot of 1-0 wins recently as their attack has been struggling and that could lead to some dropped points in the near future. They also have a match against Real Madrid left this season and they lost the reverse fixture so a loss in that match would hurt their chances at the title even more. Their 1 saving grace is that Real Madrid is good enough to make a run in Champions League so they may not be as focused on the league title down the road, but if they get eliminated or even have a lead then they will definitely be focused on winning the title and keeping it out of the hands of Barcelona. This title race is nowhere near being over right now so this line for Barcelona is heavily mispriced. Real Madrid +240: Real Madrid is coming in as the 2nd biggest favorite on the board here to win the La Liga title and with odds like these it is hard not to be tempted by the defending La Liga Champions and defending Champions League Champions. Real Madrid showed last year that they are not only the best in Spain but also the best in Europe and their squad overall remained unchanged at the key positions. They have been great this year as well as they are sitting in 2nd place in the table, just 5 points behind the league leading Barcelona, and they have a 13-3-2 record overall with half a season left to make a big run and catch Barcelona. Real Madrid may not have the best defense in the league like Barcelona does, but their defense has still been very good as they average under 1 goal allowed per match. Their attack has been better than Barcelona though as Real Madrid has scored more goals this season and even leads La Liga this year with the most goals scored, scoring 38 goals in their 18 matches. Real Madrid also had a much better Champions League campaign than Barcelona did as Real Madrid actually made it out of the group stage but that might be the one thing that hurts them down the line if they can make a deep run. Real Madrid is good enough to make a run in Champions League which would force them to split their attention between matches later in the season and it could allow Barcelona who is not in Champions League to secure their lead and the title. Real Madrid also has the depth and talent to focus on both competitions though as they were in great form doing both prior to the World Cup, and if they get knocked out then it will only strengthen their chances at the league title as they will turn their focus there wanting to come away with a trophy this year. Considering all of the situations as well as the talent and the depth on this Real Madrid side, there is a ton of value in this line for them to win the title as they could easily erase the 5 point lead Barcelona has in the next few weeks and these two could be sitting level with a third of the season still left. There is no better value here than to take the defending La Liga and Champions League Champions here to defend their title once again.  Real Sociedad +20000: Real Sociedad is coming into this as the 3rd biggest favorite on the board to win the La Liga title this year but with odds like these they are not really that much of a favorite nor do they even look like they have a shot at the title. This Real Sociedad side is a lot better than the oddsmakers think and week after week this team is undervalued in the lines of their matches. They are currently sitting in 3rd place right now just 3 points behind 2nd place and 8 points behind 1st place but they have also played an extra match so that could be more like 11 points behind 1st place. Real Sociedad has been in great form all year but they have really kicked it up a level since the restart, winning every single match they have played in any competition, and they have a very good squad with a great defense that averages under 1 goal allowed per match. As good as this team is and as well as they have been playing, the oddsmakers are likely correct in the sense that they do not have a shot at the title just because they are too far behind now with 2 goliath’s in the way and still have extra matches coming up with Europa League soon, but to have them at par with Atletico Madrid is completely absurd as this is the best team in Spain by far when taking Barcelona and Real Madrid out of the equation. Real Sociedad does not have the team to make a run at the title this season but they are still very good and will have that 3rd place spot locked up all year. Some books offer an option “To Win Outright without Barcelona and Real Madrid” and right now Real Sociedad is sitting at +125 which looks like a steal for the club that is destined to finish 3rd this season. Atletico Madrid +20000: Atletico Madrid is coming into this as the next biggest favorite on the board to win the La Liga title this season and their odds to win are the same as Real Sociedad right now but that is absolutely absurd. Atletico Madrid is currently sitting in 4th place just 5 points behind Real Sociedad in 3rd place and 13 points behind Barcelona in 1st place. Atletico has also played an extra match this season like Real Sociedad so even though they are still 5 points behind them, that could be more like 16 points behind Barcelona in 1st place. Atletico Madrid does have a very good defense as they have been averaging under 1 goal allowed per match this year, but that is also all they have as their attack has been awful all year struggling to score goals in their matches and their mindset is not right to win a title either. Their manager loves to implement a heavily defensive game plan in their matches so they come to play every game with great defense that is hard to score on, but they also lack interest in winning games as they do not try to go out and win but instead try not to lose matches. They do not have the talent on their squad to make a real run at the title and they have been trending in the wrong direction for a while now. Atletico Madrid has no real shot at winning the title this year and they will even be lucky just to make it back in the top 4 at all.  RecommendationsThe oddsmakers want it to seem like the La Liga title race in Spain is already over when in reality it is just getting started now that the transfer window is nearing its end and there is still an entire 2nd half of the season to go. Barcelona is a massive favorite to win it right now and although they may be in the best position to win it at the moment, this is way too much to pay for them when there is still a very good team just a few points away and still plenty of matches left for Barcelona to blow it. The most value there is in this league is to take Real Madrid at +240 to win the La Liga title as they are only 5 points behind with 20 matches to go in the season and they are the defending Champions as well so they will not go down easily. The league is pretty much dominated by Barcelona and Real Madrid as it has been for years but if looking for some extra value then it is also worth it to take Real Sociedad at +125 to win the La Liga title without Barcelona and Real Madrid included as some books will offer this and Real Sociedad is easily the best team in this league behind those two. 

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Premier League Futures (Updated)

Monday, Jan 30, 2023

The Premier League is more than halfway through the season now and teams are really starting to round into their season form as the contenders look to make a big push in this 2nd half of the year. The Winter Transfer Window is also coming to a close soon and teams have had plenty of opportunities to boost their squads and make some big moves that could help with a big run down the final stretch of the season. The true contenders to win the league title this year are a lot different than the clubs that were expected to have good seasons at the beginning of the year and now it is time to see which of these clubs still has a real shot at making a big run down the stretch and coming away with the title.  To Win Outright Arsenal -138: Arsenal is the current leading favorite on the board to win the Premier League title this season and this was a team that really flew under the radar at the beginning of the season. They made some big moves to boost their squad and brought in some new management but they are exceeding expectations this year as they sit 5 points above the 2nd place club and still have a match in hand as well. Arsenal has by far been the most dominant team this year with only 2 draws and 1 loss in their 19 matches and they are on pace to surpass the best season this Arsenal club has had in its history. They even suffered a big blow when they lost their star forward in the World Cup, Gabriel Jesus, and yet they have still managed to stay in such great form without picking up a replacement. They have not only been averaging over 2 goals scored per match this year with their very potent attack, but they also have the 2nd best defense in the Premier League with only 16 goals allowed in their 19 matches. Arsenal has shown this year that they are a club that is here to stay and even though they will have Europa League matches near the end of the season which will be a bit of a distraction, they may have such a big lead in the league by then that it may not even matter though. Arsenal is a true contender to win the title and has been the most dominant team in the Premier League all season. Manchester City +125: Manchester City is the 2nd biggest favorite on the board to win the Premier League title as they currently sit in 2nd place right now but they have fallen quite a bit from the beginning of the season. Man City was the big favorite at the beginning of the year as they were the only team that had odds that were not +$ and it was pretty much expected of them to win the title again with the dominance they have shown over the last few years. As deep as Man City is with their 2 full squads of players that could be starters on countless other teams in the Premier League, they did lose some big talent in the summer and so far they have not been having the greatest season. They did add Haaland to their squad who has been a scoring machine for them all year but in the few matches where he has struggled to create chances for himself the team as a whole has struggled to score goals in those matches which has led them to drop some points in their matches. Man City has been a lot more inconsistent as a team this year than they have been in previous years but this is a lot of value for them to win the title at +$ and even though they are 5 points behind the league leaders with Arsenal having a match in hand as well, they also still have both fixtures against Arsenal left this season so they have a chance to make a run at the title still. Man City could run into issues down the stretch though as they have bigger things to worry about with the next round of Champions League starting soon and that will be a big distraction to this team since that will be their main focus and they are still desperately looking for a Champions League title after years of league dominance. Man City does have some value at this price to win the title as they have the talent and squad depth to do it but it may be a very tight race in the end with Man City focusing their efforts elsewhere depending how deep a run they can make in Champions League. Manchester United +4000: Manchester United comes in as the 3rd biggest favorite to win the Premier League title this year but there is a very large gap between them and the 2nd biggest favorite. With these odds it seems like there is almost no chance of Man Utd making a run at the title this year and that will likely be the case as they currently sit in 4th place with 39 points, just 11 points behind the league leading Arsenal, but Arsenal also has a match in hand on Man Utd and with no more fixtures against them this season Arsenal would have to drop some serious points for Man Utd to get back in this. Of all the teams below the top 2 right now, Man Utd does have the best shot to pull it off though as they have been in great form for a majority of the season and are finally starting to figure things out on the pitch between their starting talent and management. Man Utd is also in the middle of a club sale right now as well so even if Arsenal did drop some major points and Man Utd continued on their run, they still do not have the depth to make a run like that and would be very content with just a top 4 spot this year to get back in Champions League as they look to really boost their squad in the summer with their new influx of cash. Man Utd may not have the squad to make a run this year and win the title but this is a club that is on the rise right now and they will only get better in the summer as they look to win a title next year, Newcastle +8000: Newcastle is the 4th biggest favorite on the board to win the title but a favorite they are definitely not. They have been having a great year as they currently sit in 3rd place with 39 points, but they are still 11 points behind the league leading Arsenal and Arsenal still has a match in hand as well. Newcastle really jumped out to a great start which propelled them up the table but they have been slowing down recently and will not be able to keep up the pace they have been on. They have the best defense in the Premier League as they have allowed the least amount of goals all season with just 11 goals allowed in their 20 matches, but as well as their defense has been playing it has led to them leaning on their defensive play more and even though they are not allowing many goals, it is not translating into wins either. They have only lost 1 match this year in their 20 matches which is very good as Arsenal is the only other team in the league with just 1 loss, but Newcastle has also only won 10 matches with 9 draws in their 20 matches played. No other team in the top 4 right now has more than 3 draws while Newcastle has 9 draws and a lot of them have come in matches where they were the dominant team but just could not score any goals. Finishing has really been a problem for them recently but this is a club that has a lot of money to buy players in the summer and they are already way ahead of schedule this season so they would be very content with just finishing in the top 4 and then addressing their needs in the summer to make them a real title contender next year. Newcastle does have a very good team this year but they have no shot at winning the title if they continue to play the way they are playing with an attack that is lacking heavily. RecommendationsWe have covered the top 4 teams in the Premier League right now and their odds to win the Premier League title with the way things have gone so far. There are a number of other big clubs that were not mentioned like Tottenham, Liverpool, and Chelsea but the reality is that those clubs are too far down the table to make a big enough run and all 3 clubs are in total disarray as they have all been trending in the wrong direction, spiraling toward self-destruction. The 4 clubs we discussed are the 4 clubs with the best chance of making a run for the title but at this point in the season with the way every team has been playing, this is pretty much a two horse race to the finish line as Arsenal and Man City look to battle it out down the stretch for the title. The best way to go with placing a future still is on Manchester City at +125 as this is a lot of value for them with the depth of their squad and the talent they have. They are also only 5-8 point behind Arsenal depending on what Arsenal does with the match in hand and they still have 2 matches against them this season so there is plenty of opportunity for Man City to make a comeback and take advantage of any slip ups that Arsenal may have down the stretch. 

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Premier League Transfer Needs

Saturday, Dec 31, 2022

The winter transfer window is finally here and there are many potential moves that could change the rest of the season for some of these clubs in England. The winter transfer window will not see some of the bigger moves but this is a great time for title contenders to reload their squads or for teams lower in the table to try to make a turn around with some new acquisitions. Coming off the heels of a World Cup as well, there was a lot of talent being showcased on the world stage and it is time to see what possible moves could be made for some of the biggest clubs in England looking to chase down titles or just stay competitive.  Club Needs Arsenal: Arsenal is coming into this transfer window sitting atop the Premier League table a few points clear of the 2nd place team and they have been having a very good season. Arsenal spent a lot of money in the summer transfer window to make themselves competitive for a top 4 spot this year and so far it has worked out very well for them with the year they are having. They have had a dominant defense all year and a very strong midfield with a lot of depth, but their biggest need in their squad is on the attacking side. They spent some big money for Gabriel Jesus in the summer but he picked up a serious injury in the World Cup and they now need a replacement for him, most likely some players who can score goals and add some more threat to their attack. Arsenal has been linked with Mykhaylo Mudryk from Shakhtar Donetsk and Joao Felix from Atletico Madrid as possible forward signings, they are a lot closer to signing Mudryk than Felix but picking up either player would really help their attack until Jesus can come back healthy again. They have also been looking to sign Cedric Soares from Fulham to give their great defense an even bigger boost. As long as Arsenal can sign a goalscorer or even a solid forward to help their attack, they will be in good shape in the 2nd half of the season as they look to hold down their number 1 spot.  Manchester City: Man City is coming into this transfer window as the 2nd place team in the Premier League and their squad is already riddled with talent while also being very deep. Despite all of the talent they have at every position, they find themselves in a bit of trouble here as this team is built to win titles but they trail by a few points in the table behind the league leaders. They have already made their big move in the summer with the signing of Erling Haaland and there is not much else they can do to improve this squad but they will still be looking for younger talent to grow in this transfer window. They have been linked with the 19 year old Maximo Perrone from Velez Sarsfield just to add to their depth. They have also been linked with Jude Bellingham from Dortmund and Kylian Mbappe from PSG, but they will likely lose out on Bellingham to another team while Mbappe is very unlikely to make a move until the summer transfer window. It does not look like Man City will be making any big splashes in this transfer window but their squad is already good enough to make a big run in both Premier League and Champions League. Newcastle: Newcastle is coming into this transfer window as the 3rd place team in the Premier League and they have been a big surprise this year as they have been playing very well and are one of the better teams. They did spend a lot of money in the summer to bring in some good players and they are not done spending just yet. They have a lot of very good players with a strong and deep midfield but they also have one of the best defenses in the league as well as they have not been allowing many goals this year. They have been scoring goals as well but their biggest need comes at the forward positions as they could use some more depth there as well as a true striker to really anchor this attack. They have been linked with James Madison from Leicester City, Christian Pulisic from Chelsea, and Memphis Depay from Barcelona as they continue to look at any available forwards to try and provide their attack with a true goalscorer and some better attacking players. It is unlikely that they will land any of these players but they have been in talks with countless forwards and they will likely make a signing to boost their attack. If they can find a forward that fits in with their attack well, then this could be a very dangerous team with that good defense and they will be a top 4 threat all year. Manchester United: Man Utd is coming into this transfer window sitting in 4th place in the Premier League in what is a very tight race for those top 4 spots. Man Utd is in a difficult position right now as they are in the middle of a club sale so until a deal gets done they are strapped for cash and will be looking more to the summer transfer window, but if a deal can get done before January ends then they could end up making some big splashes in this window. If they do make some moves, they will need to sign some forwards to help their attack as they lack a true striker on their team. They have a very deep midfield with a lot of talent as well and they also have a solid starting group of defensemen, but it would not hurt to add some defensive depth as well as defense has been an issue for them in the past, struggling to keep the ball out of their net. They have been linked with Joao Felix from Atletico Madrid and Rafael Leao from AC Milan to boost their attack and either would be a good addition but they will still need some more goal scoring abilities if they want to be a top 4 threat in the 2nd half of the season. They have also had some of their key players approached by other teams like Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford but until the sale of this club goes through, they are in a bit of a deadlock this transfer window and can only hope to keep things together long enough to finish top 4 and keep their current pace until the summer when they will have more money to spend. Tottenham: Tottenham is coming into this transfer window sitting in 5th place in the Premier League but they have been slipping over the last few weeks and they are trending downwards with the way they have been playing. Scoring has not been an issue for them this year as they have a very good group of attacking players and a very deep midfield with a lot of talent, but their issue this year has been on defense. They have been allowing a lot of goals in their matches all year, especially when playing away from home, and this is becoming a big issue that is seeing them slip down the table. If they are to make some moves in this window and try to stay in the top 4 this year, they are going to need to make some serious moves on defense and bring in a player to stabilize their poor defensive line. They have not been strongly linked with many defensive players though other than Sofyan Amrabat from Fiorentina but they are unlikely to sign him and will likely make very little moves in this window. They have also been linked with some goalkeepers which would help out as Hugo Lloris has not been having a good year. Jordan Pickford from Everton and Yann Sommer from Monchengladbach are the 2 keepers they have been in talks with but even if they bring in one of those players in, they will still need to patch their defense which has not been very good. Tottenham needs to make some defensive moves in this window or they are going to be in some real trouble this year and they will be at risk of falling further down in the table. Liverpool: Liverpool is coming into this transfer window sitting in 6th place in the Premier League and they have fallen a lot since last year with the players they lost in the summer. They have already made their 1st big splash of this transfer window though by bringing in Cody Gakpo from PSV Eindhoven to strengthen their weaker left side on the attack. They have been trying to fill the hole that Sadio Mane left in the summer and this move might just be what they need, but they still need to strengthen some other areas as well. Their defense has not been great this year and they could use some more depth on that defensive line to help stabilize it. They are also lacking a bit in midfield talent as well, they have a lot of great forwards with a lot of talent but they need to give their midfield a boost with playmakers who can control the pace of play and get the ball to their goal scorers. They have been linked with some quality midfielders such as Moises Caicedo from Brighton, Sofyan Amrabat from Fiorentina, and Enzo Fernandez from Benfica. If they manage to sign any of these players then that would be a massive boost to their midfield and might just be what they need to make a run in the 2nd half of the season getting back into the top 4 and even title contention. They have already signed Gakpo though and they do not have a lot of money to spend so it will be tough for them to bring in any of these players but if they do that might just feel the need for this team. Chelsea: Chelsea is coming into this transfer window sitting in 9th place in the Premier League and of all the major clubs in the league, they have been having the worst season as they are in real trouble. They lost a lot of talent in the summer and failed to replace it but they also went through a club sale recently and now the new owner is starting to target players and spend money in this transfer window to try and turn things around for this 2nd half of the season. Defense has been their strength over the last few years and even though they lost some defensive talent in the summer, they still have a lot of talent and depth on both defense and in their midfield. It has been their attack that has been a real issue as they struggle to score goals in their games and what they really need here is to bring in some quality forwards to boost their attack and some players that can score goals as well. They have been linked with players like Enzo Fernandez from Benfica, Declan Rice from West Ham, Moises Caicedo from Brighton, Benoit Badiashile from Monaco, Andrey Santos from Vasco da Gama, and N’Golo Kante from Barcelona. Chelsea is clearly targeting any high value player they can get no matter the position in an attempt to flood this team with talent and make something happen in the 2nd half of the season. Their season will depend on who they can get in this transfer window but it would not be shocking to see them spend a lot of money in this window with their new owner. 

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World Cup Futures (Updated)

Thursday, Dec 08, 2022

The World Cup has been filled with many surprises up to this point with some big upsets in the group stage to some more straight forward matches in the Round of 16. There have been some teams that are performing much better than expected and others who have not lived up to the expectations coming into the tournament. Now it has been whittled down to just 8 teams left in the tournament and it is time to see who has the best chance of taking the trophy home of the remaining teams. To Win Outright Brazil +170: Brazil was the big favorite coming into the tournament and they are still the favorite to win the whole thing coming into the quarter-finals. Brazil is one of the most talented teams in the tournament and they have a lot of depth on their bench with enough talent at every position for some of these bench players to even be starters. They did not play their best in the group stage as they won their group with 2 wins and 1 loss, but they put any doubters to bed in the Round of 16 with a dominant performance in the first 30 mins against South Korea as that match was well over by then. Brazil still looks like one of the strongest teams left in the tournament and even though there is not a lot of reward for taking them to win at this point in the tournament, they still have a very good chance of winning it all which puts some value in this line still.  France +400: France is coming into this match as the 2nd favorite on the board and understandably so as the defending World Cup Champions have been very dominant in every game they have played with a full strength lineup. They only had 1 blunder in the group stage with a 1-0 loss to Tunisia and that was due to the fact that they had already advanced and were looking to rest their star players. They looked even better in their knockout match against Poland as Poland had no answer for their attack the entire match, but it is still tough to find value in France here considering the route they have to go through. France has to play their next match against England which will be a very tough task and even if they do get by them, they will still have to play 2 very tough teams to win the trophy and all of those matches against good opponents could start to take a toll on them later in the competition. It is also very difficult for a country to win B2B World Cups which makes France’s chances of winning it again even worse here. France very well could go all the way and win it all but considering their side of the bracket and the injuries they have to key players, there is not a whole lot of value in France here. Argentina +600: Argentina is coming into the quarter-finals as the next option on the list and they are a side that suffered one of the biggest shocks in the group stage. They lost their very 1st match of the tournament and it was a huge upset as they lost to Saudi Arabia who was pegged as the weakest team in the group coming into the tournament. Argentina managed to pull themselves together in their next few matches as they have won 3 straight coming into the quarter-finals, but their defense has not been great in their matches and this issue could come back to haunt them later in the competition against a much better team than what they have faced. They have played 4 teams so far and none of them have been very strong teams, they were by far the best team in their group and even in the last round they got to take on Australia who just barely qualified for the tournament in extra qualifiers. They really have not faced a very good team yet but their defense showed its flaws in their last match as they got comfortable with their 2 goal lead conceding a late goal to Australia and then almost gave up another very late goal which would have tied the match. This lack of focus on defense will come back to bite them and they still have to go through some very good teams to get to the finals. They are going to be facing their 1st real test in this tournament with their next match and until they show some better play, there is no value in them going all the way with such good teams left still. England +600: England is coming into the quarter-finals as another +600 contender here but they still have a very tough road to go through to get to the finals. Their next match is against the defending World Cup Champions but this England side still has a lot of depth in their squad and they have proven to be a very tough team to beat in this tournament. England was not playing very well prior to the tournament as they were in very poor form and even got themselves relegated in UEFA Nations League. They did make a very deep run in the last Euro Cup though and this team is starting to look much different than the one that was coming into this tournament. England has still been very stout with their good defense but their attack has also looked a lot better and has been scoring a lot more goals. They really have not faced a team like France yet so this will be their most difficult match yet, but they are not dealing with as many injuries to their squad and they have a lot of depth at every position if they need to rotate players deeper in the tournament. England also has the extra motivation of being the runner up in the last Euro Cup so they have a deep hunger to make a big run and they have been one of the most in-form teams in the tournament thus far. England has a tough road to the finals but a very good team with lots of depth and there is still some real value in them making a deep run.  Portugal +600: Portugal is coming into the quarter-finals as another +600 favorite to win the trophy and they have already proven themselves to be a real threat moving forward. They were very dominant in their matches in the group stage as they were in complete control of both of their wins. They only lost the 1 match against South Korea but in a match where they had already qualified and were resting players for the Round of 16. Their strategy really worked as they came out in their match against Switzerland and completely embarrassed them with another dominant performance. They benched Ronaldo in that last match and all that did was show how much of a better team they are without him as they have a lot more pace and were able to fly by defenders quite easily to create scoring chances. Their next match is going to be against Morocco and because of this they have a bit of an easier path to getting to the finals with less powerhouse teams in their way. Portugal also has the depth along with their talent in the starting lineup to make a very deep run with the form they have been in. They have a lot of attacking power but a good defense and midfield as well which will make them a very tough team to break down even for the best in the World. With the form they are currently in, they have a lot of value at this price to win the entire tournament.  Netherlands +1600: Netherlands is coming into the quarter-finals as an even larger underdog to win the tournament than they were at the beginning of it. They were not at their best in the group stage but they still managed to win their group with a banged up squad and looked very dominant in their win over USA in the Round of 16. They were not great in the group stage but they have also been getting healthier the deeper we get into it and they have been getting better and better on the pitch in each match as they continue to play. They have finally found a solid answer for their attack in Gakpo and Depay which will only compliment their very strong midfield and defense. Even when they are not at their best, they have shown that they are a very clinical and disciplined team that does not make a lot of mistakes in their matches and they are an extremely tough side to break down defensively. They do not have the best road to the finals as they will likely have to take out the 2 biggest South American powerhouses on their way there, but both do have their flaws and considering the tactical mindset of the Netherlands when they play, they will be able to frustrate a lot of their opponents with good defense. They have a lot of value at this price as they have the talent and the skill to make a deep run and pull off some big upsets along the way.  Morocco +4000: Morocco is coming into the quarter-finals as one of the biggest longshots left in the tournament. They have played very well in their matches as they have taken down some really good opponents and their defense has proven themselves to be very tough to crack. They do have one big issue with their attack though as they have struggled to create a lot of scoring chances for themselves and even though they managed to get past Spain in the last round, they were pressured that entire match and one mistake would have cost them big. They are very good defensively but have no real attack and are just 1 defensive mistake away from being put in a hole they cannot get out of. Their defense has done very well to get them this far but now they will have to face much stronger teams with much better attacks that will make sure they finish. Morocco is a great story to make it this far but their journey will be coming to an end very soon.  Croatia +4000: Croatia is coming into the quarter-finals as one of the biggest longshots to win the tournament. They have been able to get this far using the same kind of strategy as Morocco as Croatia does have a very good defense with one of the strongest groups of midfielders left in the tournament. The problem is that they have also lacked a good attack as they have no real goalscorer on their squad and this becomes an even bigger issue since the players they do have in their lineup are much older and starting to slow down with their style of play. They will not be able to keep up with some of these much younger teams who have a lot of pace and once Croatia finds themselves down in a match, it will be very difficult for them to come back against some of these much better squads. Croatia was the runner up 4 years ago when they lost to France but they were already on the older side back then and 4 years does make a big difference for these players. Croatia has no real value to repeat what they did 4 years ago and make a deep run.  RecommendationsWhen picking from these final 8 teams to win the entire tournament there are 3 ways to go about this. For the safest bet that probably has the best chance of winning would be to take the favorites here as Brazil still has one of the most talented squads in the tournament and they showed a glimpse of it in their last match. If looking for a longshot then the best way to go is the Netherlands, even though they do have a difficult path they have the skill and the discipline to really frustrate teams defensively and if they manage to get through the 2 biggest South American powers then they will surely have the momentum going into the finals so there is a lot of value in this large number. Finally, if looking for a team with an easier path and still lots of value then Portugal would be the way to go as they have proved themselves to be a real threat with their speed and skill, also having to go through one of the easier pathways to get to the finals. 

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World Cup Goalscorer Futures

Friday, Nov 18, 2022

The World Cup is right around the corner and there are tons of ways to find value in many of the markets offered. One of the markets that is great to find value in is who will be the top goalscorer in the tournament. There are different ways to bet this as it is always good to pick a team that will go deep into the tournament, but that might not always be the best strategy as teams that go deep in the tournament have a lot of talent at all positions. Another way to look at it would be to pick a smaller team that relies more on a sole player to be a large portion of their attack. These are some handpicked players that have the best value for betting top goalscorer in the tournament. Top Goalscorer Harry Kane +700: Harry Kane is the biggest favorite on the list and he is clearly the obvious choice being the main source of England’s attack. England is not a team that is going to score a lot of goals though as their defense is much better than their attack right now. The goals they do score though will likely be from Harry Kane. England also has a chance to make a deep run in the tournament because of their defense and the big point that gives Kane a lot of his value here is the fact that not only is he the main source of their offense, but he is also the main guy to take the penalty kicks for England so despite being the biggest favorite, the value is there for Kane to finish with the most goals.  Kylian Mbappe +800: Kylian Mbappe is the next biggest favorite on this list and it will be much tougher for him to win this achievement just because he has another big goalscorer on his team in Karim Benzema. Benzema has been dealing with some injuries over the last few months though as he was injured in Champions League when playing for Real Madrid so there is a chance he will not be as involved in scoring on their attack and will leave the goal scoring aspect to Mbappe. Mbappe is by far one of the most talented players in the tournament and if France hopes to make another deep run in the World Cup this year, they will need some goals from Mbappe here. Mbappe has the value here due to Benzema being banged up a bit and the fact that France very well could make a deep run into the tournament.  Cristiano Ronaldo +2000: Jumping ahead over a few players the next on this list is Ronaldo for Portugal. Ronaldo offers a lot of value for top goalscorer here for a lot of the same reasons as Kane does. Portugal has a very good team that has a chance of going deep into the tournament and Ronaldo is a big part of their attack and goal scoring as well. Ronaldo also takes a majority of their penalty kicks which really boosts his value here. Ronaldo is not getting any younger either and Messi recently announced that this is his last World Cup so it is hard to see Ronaldo having many left in him. Ronaldo has not played very often for his club Man Utd and with the transfer window coming in January, this is Ronaldo’s chance to show he still has a lot left in the tank for a major European club so he has a lot of extra motivation to try and dominate this tournament. Ronaldo offers a lot of value to finish as the top goalscorer for all those reasons.  Robert Lewandowski +4000: Robert Lewandowski is the next on this handpicked list and a lot of it has to do with the fact that Poland is not one of the European powers and a lot of their attack comes from this man right here. Poland may not go very deep into the tournament but they have a very good chance of making it out of the group stage and if they do end up qualifying, a majority of their goals will be scored by Lewandowski as he has been one of the best strikers on the planet for years. He has been dominating as the striker of Bayern Munich for years before he left for Barcelona this season, but he has still been scoring beautiful goals and he will be the main source of Poland’s attack here. He is also the most likely to take their penalty kicks as well so he has a lot of value here considering Poland is not a team that needs to go very deep in the tournament for him to score a lot of goals. Aleksandar Mitrovic +6600: Aleksandar Mitrovic gets the next spot on this list and a lot of his value here is the same as the value in Lewandowski. Serbia has a very good team that is being highly underestimated this year but they have been scoring a lot of goals in their competitions leading up to this and Mitrovic has been a huge part of their attack. He is their guy when it comes to scoring goals and his talent even stretches out to the Premier League as he is the leading goalscorer for Fulham as well. He will be the guy taking penalties for this team but Serbia also has a very good chance to make it out of their group and they will not need to go very deep in the tournament for Mitrovic to score goals. Serbia also plays in a group with the very talented Brazil and 2 other very defensive teams so they need to score goals to get out of this group and their attack is very good led by Mitrovic so he has a lot of value here and is also a personal favorite to be the top goalscorer.  Leroy Sane +6600: Leroy Sane is the final player on this handpicked list and he just makes the cut due to the way he has been playing for his club recently and the fact that Germany does not play defense well in their matches. Sane has been scoring a lot of goals for his club Bayern Munich in their recent matches and with Germany lacking a true striker on their squad, the goals have to come from somewhere and Sane has been on fire recently. Germany is also a team that does not play defense very well and tends to allow a lot of goals so in turn, they have to score a lot of goals to win their matches and Sane will be a big part of their attack when it comes to scoring goals. He is not a true striker either but the goals have to come from someone considering this is a team that scores a lot, and Sane has the best chance to lead this team as he can score goals from anywhere on the field and has been in great form playing for his domestic club. Sane offers a lot of value as Germany has a chance to both score a lot of goals in the tournament and go very deep in it as well. 

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World Cup Futures (Best Bets)

Friday, Nov 18, 2022

The World Cup is just a few days away now and we have already discussed the many different ways to bet on futures for it. We have covered futures to win the tournament outright, group betting, and even players to be the top goalscorer. Now it is time to run through all of the categories that offer the best value to bet on and the specific future bets that I deem to be “best bets” for this tournament. Best Bets Netherlands To Win Outright +1200: This is a bet on the Netherlands to win the World Cup outright this year. The Netherlands has a very good team this year and they are being underestimated a lot in this World Cup. They have been building up their squad since before the last Euro Cup and even though they did not do great in that tournament, they are much improved since then and have a lot of talent on their team. They have a strong defense and a very strong midfield to keep them in a lot of their matches but their attack is also very good as they have been scoring a lot of goals in recent competitions and they have the talent to make a very deep run here. They are one of the more complete teams competing this season as a lot of the other teams have issues of either being too attack heavy or play too defensively, but the Netherlands has a great balance between their attack and defense and the strength of their midfield will be able to carry them deep into this tournament. This is a true darkhorse to win the entire tournament but they also have one of the best chances from a talent perspective.  Aleksandar Mitrovic Top Goalscorer +6600: This is a bet on Aleksandar Mitrovic from Serbia to finish as the top goalscorer in the tournament. Serbia has a very good team that is being underestimated and even though they are not expected to make it out of the group stage, they have a much better chance at qualifying than Switzerland or Cameroon does because of their strong attack and ability to score goals. Serbia will make it out of the group stage this year but they do not even need to go very deep for Mitrovic to score a lot of goals. They are going to need to score lots of goals in the group stage to get past Cameroon and Switzerland and as long as they win those matches by outsourcing their opponent, they will make it out even if they lose to Brazil. Mitrovic is going to be a big source for a lot of Serbia’s goals though and he will even have chances to score through penalties as he is their leading scorer. Mitrovic is also the leading goalscorer for his Premier League club Fulham and he has been in great form for both his domestic club and his country in their recent matches. In the past, the top goalscorer in the tournament does not really score more than 6 goals and even if Serbia only plays in 4 matches, Mitrovic is the leader of this attack and could easily get to 6 goals with some of the teams they are going to face. Mitrovic offers the best bang for your buck here as he has a very good chance of finishing as the top goalscorer. Germany To Win Group E +110: This is a bet on Germany to win their Group E in the group stage and the fact that they are not even favored here is absolutely absurd. They play in a group with Costa Rica, Japan, and Spain who are all very defensive teams. Costa Rica and Japan rely a lot on defense to win their matches and their attacks are not very good as neither team tends to score a lot of goals. Germany has a very strong attack that is going to find the net on both of those teams and they will be no match for Germany when they play each other. That leaves just Spain left as the one threat to win this group as they are the favorite right now but they are not even a true threat to win this tournament. Spain is also a very defensive team that relies too heavily on their defensive play to win matches and they do not score many goals either to help out their defense with their attack. They are the kind of team that will score 1 goal or maybe even 2 and try to sit on their lead with defense the entire match. That is going to get them burned when they play a team like Germany who will be able to find the net on them and Spain does not have the attack to keep up with Germany if they fall behind in that match. Spain also has a very young team that is not ready to make a deep run in the World Cup as they need more time to develop their young players. Spain will become a threat 4 years from now when they are more developed but as for this tournament, they have no real shot at beating Germany in this group. Serbia To Qualify From Group G +110: This is a bet on Serbia to qualify out of their group as they have the best chance to take the 2nd place spot. They are in a group with Brazil, Switzerland, and Cameroon. Brazil has one of the best teams in the world with all of the talent they have so it is hard to see Serbia winning this group over Brazil but they can definitely qualify with the talent they have on their squad. They will be focused on winning their matches against Switzerland and Cameroon as those will be what decides who goes through. Cameroon is the weakest team in the group and Serbia should have no problem disposing of them but Switzerland is actually favored to make it out of the group over Serbia. Switzerland has a good defense but they do not score a lot of goals as their attack is not very good and they will try to beat Serbia with a big defensive effort. Serbia also has a decent defense though but they have an attack that can score a lot of goals and a striker in Mitrovic who is on fire in his recent matches. Serbia has a very strong attack that will be able to break through the Switzerland defense and find the net. Once Serbia takes a lead against them it will be hard for Switzerland to answer with that weak attack and if they have to push their attack in that situation, they will only open up themselves to more goals from the potent Serbia attack. Serbia is the better team here and they have the best chance of qualifying out of this group with Brazil.  Brazil 1st, Serbia 2nd Group Forecast +200: This is a bet on the group forecast for Group G with Brazil finishing 1st in the group and Serbia finishing 2nd. As mentioned before Serbia has the better chance of advancing out of the group over Switzerland and with the amount of talent Brazil has on their team at every position, none of those teams are going to be able to touch them and steal this group. Serbia to qualify at +110 is a very good bet but if looking for some extra on it then this is also a very good bet due to the fact that no other team is going to win this group other than Brazil so this is almost like a Serbia to qualify at +200 bet. Winning Continent South America +162: This is a bet on South America to be the winning continent of this World Cup and there is a lot of value in this play. Europe is the favored continent here at -188 just due to the higher number of teams they have competing in the tournament but the 2 biggest favorites right now to win the tournament outright are both teams from South America, Brazil and Argentina. Brazil by far has the most talent at every position on their team than any other country in the tournament and Argentina also has the motivation of this being Messi’s last World Cup ever along with the talent on their team. These may be the only 2 South American teams with a chance to go deep in the tournament but both teams are loaded with talent and even the bookmakers have them as the top 2 teams to win it all. One of these teams is bound to make the finals with the amount of talent each has on their team so this is a great bet with lots of value as the winner could easily be one of those South American powers.  Thibaut Courtois To Win Golden Glove +500: This is a bet on the Belgium goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois to win the Golden Glove for this tournament. Belgium does not have as good a team as they have had in recent years with a lot of their top talent aging, but if they are to make a deep run in this tournament then Courtois is going to be a big reason why. Over the last year, Courtois has been dominating in net for Real Madrid pumping out clean sheet after clean sheet and has been making some incredible saves in the process. He took on a lot of shots from Liverpool in last year’s Champions League Finals but he made the big saves every time and really helped carry Real Madrid to that title. He has been playing very well in net in his recent matches and if Belgium is to make a deep run in this tournament, Courtois will be a big reason why with the saves he will have to make.  Group G Highest Scoring Group +700: This is a bet on Group G to be the highest scoring group at the end of the group stage. Group G is one of the biggest underdogs on the board for this category but they are the group that also possesses 2 of the strongest attacks in the tournament. Brazil, Serbia, Switzerland, and Cameroon are the teams that will be playing in Group G and even though Cameroon is not very good, they can still score goals in this group. Switzerland is a much more defensive team with a weaker attack but even they can score some goals in their matches and will not go scoreless in all 3 matches. Then there is Brazil who has one of the strongest squads in the World and could easily end up scoring 5 goals on each of these teams while Serbia also has a very strong attack that could find the net many times and both Switzerland and Cameroon. Considering the strength of attack and defensive play for some of these other teams in the other groups, Group G has the best chance of scoring the most goals as a whole with the strength of attacks for the teams in that group. There is a lot of value on this play.

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World Cup Group Betting

Monday, Oct 31, 2022

The World Cup is right around the corner starting on November 20 and there are so many different ways to bet on it. One great way to find some value is by betting on the groups individually whether it be on a team to win the group or just to qualify. It is time to break down each group in the tournament and find the best value in each when it comes to betting on teams to qualify. Groups Group A: The 4 countries that will be playing in Group A are Ecuador, Netherlands, Qatar, and Senegal. This group seems to be pretty straight forward and hard to find good value in. The host country Qatar is in this group and they have been a very dominant team in their region of the world, even winning the Arab Cup in their last meaningful competition played in, but they still lack a lot of talent compared to these other countries in their group and it is likely they finish at the bottom of the group. The favorite to win this group at -225 is the Netherlands but they are by far the strongest team in this group and they are going to win it as they have the most talent in the group and have the best chance at making a deep run. The only real value in this group would be to pick a team to qualify between Senegal and Ecuador, and even though it is a bit pricey at -138, Senegal to qualify is the way to go here. Senegal has a lot more talent on their team than Ecuador does and a lot of the starting players for Senegal play on a lot of the big European clubs while Ecuador’s starters come from smaller clubs in South America mainly. Senegal is probably the strongest African country in the tournament and they have enough talent to make it out of this group. Senegal to qualify at -138 is the most value you will find in this group.  Group B: The 4 countries that will be playing in Group B are England, Iran, USA, and Wales. This group actually offers quite a bit of value considering that there are some pretty decent teams who are near even in strength and the one real super power in England, who is also the big favorite to win this group, has not been in great form in recent competitions. From the recent UEFA Nations League matches going all the way back to the last Euro Cup, this England team has been very good on defense as they do not allow many goals but scoring goals has become a big issue for them and that could get them into trouble here in a 3 matchday group. Iran does have the weakest team in this group and it is likely that they will finish at the bottom of the group due to a lack of talent but, this group is wide open and they could definitely find a way to get some points in their matches which will make this group a lot closer in the end. Both USA and Wales are very similar in strength and with each being at plus money to qualify, both of them offer some real value. Wales, like England, plays very well on defense in their matches and they will play a stingy style to try and get points from every match without taking losses, but just like England they can struggle to score goals sometimes. USA has a lot of talent similar in strength but they are also a team that has goal scorers and that is going to be key for them in this group. They likely have the advantage over Wales and should be able to qualify over them but, USA also has a real shot to win this group with the way England has been playing recently. If USA can muster up a draw against England and split the points, there is a real chance they could tie on points and win the group with a better goal differential by beating up on the other 2 teams. The best value in this group is in USA to qualify at +100 and to win the group at +550.  Group C: The 4 countries that will be playing in Group C are Argentina, Mexico, Poland, and Saudi Arabia. The big favorite in this group to win it is Argentina and for good reason. Argentina has the most talent on their team at every position out of all of these teams and they have been dominating South American teams in their recent matches. They are going to be a force in this group as they have a good defense but they can also score goals. Saudi Arabia is likely to finish at the bottom of the group as they have the least amount of talent and they play a very defensive style that will not be able to keep some of these teams out of their net and Saudi Arabia has not been scoring many goals in their recent matches either. This is another tough group for qualifying though as there are 2 really good teams in Poland and Mexico who are both good enough to qualify. Argentina is likely going to win this group so there is no real value there but only one of these other teams can qualify and there is value on both with each being -110. Poland has a very good goalkeeper in Szczesny from Juventus and they have one of the best strikers on the planet in Lewandowski, but their midfield is lacking in talent and it has affected their goal scoring recently. Mexico does not have the best striker on the planet but they do have a number of very good forwards that can score goals and a group of solid midfielders to go along with their goalkeeper from the best club in Mexico this season. Mexico just has more squad depth than Poland does, Mexico is the better option to qualify at -110. Group D: The 4 countries that will be playing in Group D are Australia, Denmark, France, and Tunisia. This group does not have a lot of value in it with the biggest favorite to win the group being France at -250 and then Denmark coming in at -250 just to qualify. Tunisia has the weakest squad of all these teams and even Australia does not have nearly as much talent as France and Denmark. France and Denmark are going to be the 2 teams qualifying from this group, but there is still a bit of value to be had here. France is going to qualify from this group but they may not win the group with the way they have been playing recently. They have been in awful form lately and have also been dealing with injuries to some of their star players and also incidents between them off the field. France is also the defending World Cup Champions from the last one and it is very hard for a team to repeat. Denmark has been in great form coming into the tournament and they are very familiar with this France team as they were in their UEFA Nations League group this past season. Denmark even beat France both times in their 6 matches, 1 at home and 1 away, and they have a very talented team that plays great defense but can also score a lot of goals. Considering Denmark just beat France twice over the last few months, it is very possible that they beat them again here and if that happens then Denmark would be in the driver's seat to win this group. The best value here is in Denmark to win the group at +300. Group E: The 4 countries that will be playing in Group E are Costa Rica, Germany, Japan, and Spain. This group has a lot of value in it with some teams being undervalued and others being overvalued. Costa Rica does not have much of a chance as their team is not very talented compared to these other 3 but these other 3 teams are all very good. Germany is by far the best team in this group and it is not even close. They have a lot more talent on their team than any of the others and they have really been fixing up their defense over the last few months. This is a much improved team from the last Euro Cup with a much better defense, a very strong midfield, and a lot of goal scorers that will find the net in their matches. Germany is not even the favorite to win this group but there is a ton of value on them at +110 here. The favorite to win this group is Spain at -120 and that is very generous considering Spain is not a very good team. They have a lot of talented players but they are still a very young team that is finding their way and they are not a team that scores a lot of goals in their matches. They rely too heavily on their defense which is very good but as soon as they get matched up with a team like Germany that has that kind of firepower, their defense is going to be exposed. Spain will be lucky to even make it out of this group as their inability to score goals is going to hurt them, especially when they go against Japan who plays a very similar style of good defense and does not score a lot. If these two split the points from their match or if Japan can even find a way to win it, Spain is going to be in a lot of trouble. The best value in this group is in Germany to win the group at +110 and in Japan to qualify at +400. Group F: The 4 countries that will be playing in Group F are Belgium, Canada, Croatia, and Morocco. This is another group that does not have a lot of value in it. Morocco and Canada are both likely to not qualify as Belgium and Croatia both have much stronger teams with a lot more talent. Belgium is not the team they used to be though and they have really fallen over the last year or 2 with the way they have been playing. Croatia has been a very strong contender in every competition they play in and they have been making some very deep runs over the last few years. Both Belgium and Croatia are going to qualify here so there is not much value in those but Croatia has been playing very well recently and there is a chance with the defense they have that they will steal this group away from Belgium. The best value here is in Croatia to win the group at +250. Group G: The 4 countries that will be playing in Group G are Brazil, Cameroon, Serbia, and Switzerland. This group has some nice value with these teams to qualify. You won’t find any value in a team to win the group as Brazil is the big favorite here and for good reason as they have one of the strongest teams in the world with all of their talent and depth at every position. No team in this group is going to come near touching them, especially Cameroon who has the weakest team in the group and will likely finish at the bottom. The value here is on the team to qualify though as both Serbia and Switzerland are very close with Serbia at +110 to qualify and Switzerland at +100. There is a ton of value here though as one of these teams is clearly better and they are going to be the ones to qualify. Switzerland has a very good defense that doesn’t allow many goals but they struggle to score goals and that will get them into trouble here, especially if it comes down to goal difference. Serbia also has a decent defense but their strength is in their scoring as they have some solid forwards and midfielders who have been on fire for them and their domestic clubs, scoring a lot of goals in recent matches. Serbia has a lot more firepower on their team and they have been in very good form coming into this tournament. The best value in this group is in Serbia to qualify at +110. Group H: The 4 countries that will be playing in Group H are Ghana, South Korea, Portugal, and Uruguay. This is a very interesting group as there are a lot of good teams here. Portugal comes in as the favorite to win this group at -163 and even though that line is quite juiced, it still has value in it as Portugal has the best team in this group by far and should be a much bigger favorite to win this group. They are being undervalued here when they have a very strong team, but these other teams also have some value in them as well. Uruguay is the next biggest favorite as they are -200 to qualify and even though they do have a very good team, so does their competition. South Korea is the weakest of all these teams and they will likely finish at the bottom of the group but they could very well play out some draws and help make this a very close group in points. Ghana is also being very undervalued at +225 to qualify when they have a lot of talented players on their team and could easily take points from any of these teams. Uruguay is good as they have been rolling over teams in South America recently but their attack is also very old as their forwards are aging and their 1 good young striker is very high maintenance needing a strong midfield to feed him the ball. This could end up being a closer group in points and there is a good chance with the talent on this Ghana team that they could find themselves getting through over a Uruguay team that is past its prime. The best value here is Portugal to win the group at -163 and Ghana to qualify at +225.

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World Cup Futures

Saturday, Oct 29, 2022

The World Cup is right around the corner with less than a month until the 1st match kickoffs. There are a lot of good quality teams from all around the world but which teams are truly the best on the planet and have a real shot at taking home the trophy? Well, it is time to find out which teams truly are contenders to win the World Cup this year and see who are just frauds that do not have the squad depth to make a deep run. Let’s take a look at some of the biggest favorite to win the World Cup this year. To Win Outright Brazil +400: Brazil is coming into this tournament as the biggest favorite on the board and for very good reason. Brazil has by far one of the strongest teams in the world with the amount of talent they have at every position. Not only do they have a ton of talent at every position, but their squad depth is also one of the best in the world as they have multiple players at each position who are starting for some of the strongest clubs in Europe. This team is so strong that their bench players are good enough to be starters on the strongest clubs in Europe and the bench team for Brazil could easily beat some of these other countries in the tournament. Brazil truly does have one of the strongest teams in the world and they are a true contender to go all the way to the finals and lift the trophy. France +600: France is coming into this tournament as the 2nd biggest favorite on the board but that is a very generous line for them considering the issues they have been dealing with on and off the pitch. This team has a lot of scoring power on their side with some of the best forwards in the world, but once you get past the starters there is a significant drop in talent to the bench players and even some of their starters have been dealing with injuries recently like Karim Benzema. This team has a very strong and deep midfield as well but once again, they are riddled with injuries to some of their more talented players and their depth is not as strong when it comes to talent. Their defense has had some major issues though, they were allowing a lot of goals in their recent Nations League matches and this defense does have a lot of depth but lacks a lot of talent with those players. Even their goalkeeping will be an issue as their starter Lloris has really been struggling recently allowing a lot of goals in his club matches with Tottenham. There are also other big issues going on off the pitch like the feud between Mbappe and Pogba, 2 of their star players, so this team is not in the best head space right now either. On the surface this looks like a strong team that can go the distance but in reality there are just too many problems for them to deal with and they will likely fizzle out of the tournament after the group stage. Argentina +650: Argentina is the 3rd biggest favorite on this list and they have been a very dominant team in South America over the years. Their depth at the forward position is not that great but they do have a lot of talent with their starting forwards. They also have a very strong midfield and defense that does not allow many goals in their matches. They do not have the most talented players on the planet on their team but they play a very good defensive style in their matches that makes them very tough to beat. Messi has already announced that this will be his last World Cup with the team and considering they have never won with him yet, that could give his squad the boost they needed to make a deep run in this tournament. With Messi on their team along with all of their other talented forwards, and the great defense they play in every match which makes them difficult to score on, they could very well make a deep run all the way to the finals here. They are not the best option to go with as there is a chance they could run into a team with a much stronger attack and their defense may not be able to hold up as well. Argentina is a true contender to win this tournament but there are also better teams to go with who have a much better chance. England +700: England is coming into this tournament with a ton of talent on their team but they have not been able to put it together in their matches. They have been struggling heavily in their recent matches through UEFA Nations League and scoring has been a big issue for them in these matches. England has a lot of good players on their team and it really shows as they do not allow many goals and it is very hard to score goals on them, but despite all of their talent at the forward position the goals have just not been coming for them. This is not a recent issue either, it has been an ongoing issue over the last few years going all the way back to the last Euro Cup, and this issue really stems from their manager Southgate with the style of play that he has imposed on the team. This team has some major managerial issues right now and Southgate already knows that he will no longer be the manager after the World Cup as they have been looking for his replacement. The talent is there to make a deep run but as long as Southgate remains the manager of this squad, they are not a real contender here and they will find a way to fizzle out with their defensive style of play as they will struggle to score goals.  Spain +800: Spain is coming into this tournament as a slightly bigger underdog than England but they are dealing with the same issue as England for different reasons though. Spain has a very strong midfield and defense with the talent on their team at those positions but they really lean on that defense in their matches. Just like England, they are a team that has been struggling to score goals but for a much different reason. Unlike England, Spain does not have the talent at the forward position like they do at other positions and they lack a real goal scorer on their team. Without that vital goal scorer in their attack, they struggle to finish against even some of the worst defenses and it puts a ton of pressure on their midfield to pick up the slack. Their midfield does not have the talent to score goals though so they are dealing with the issue of having all of these good playmakers with nowhere to feed the ball to and it negatively affects the structure of their attack. Their defense is very good and does not allow many goals but they know they cannot give up many goals to win a match and that pressure is going to make them crack once they start to get deep and face some of the better attacking teams in the world. Spain has a very young team that will get a lot better with time but until then, they are not a real contender to win the World Cup this year. Germany +1000: Germany is coming into this tournament as a big underdog but the truth is they should be a lot higher than some of these teams previously mentioned. Germany does not have a very strong or deep group of forwards on their team but the few they have are very talented. Just because they are lacking a lot of good forwards though, they make up for it with the strength of talent in their midfield which also contains a lot of scoring power. They have been having issues over the last few years but scoring has never been an issue for them as this team has a lot of firepower with all of that talent. Their issues over the years have come from their defense as they have been allowing many goals in their matches, which is part of the reason why they feel the need to score so many goals in their matches, the best defense is an unstoppable offense to them. They were not in great form during the recent Nations League matches but they have actually fixed up their defensive issues a lot from the last Euro Cup. This team really can make a deep run with all of that talent and all of those goal scorers. They can compete with any team considering how many goals they can score but defense is still their weakest link and if they run into a very good defensive team in the tournament, they could be in a lot of trouble. This team still has a much better chance of going to the final than some of the other teams covered here so Germany truly is a contender to go all the way this year. Netherlands +1200: Netherlands is going to be the last team covered on this list as the teams that come after really do not have much of a chance and Netherlands is probably the best darkhorse on the board to win the entire tournament. This Netherlands team has a ton of talent on their team at every position and they have some of the best defensive players in the world to anchor that strong defense of theirs. They are very similar to Brazil, not in talent as Brazil still has a lot more of it, but in the sense that they have a very good and deep defense and midfield along with a good group of forwards that score a lot of goals. This team has one of the best midfield’s in the tournament that is very deep with a lot of talented players and they not only help defend as they do not allow many goals, but they really push this attack to do great things as they score a lot of goals without having a true striker on their team. They can beat any team in this tournament with the talent they have and the way they have been playing in their matches over the last year. This is one of the best teams in the World Cup this year by far and there is a very good chance that they end up in the finals and even lift the trophy. They are truly a contender to win this tournament. RecommendationsWe have gone over quite a few of the top favorites to win this tournament but as attractive as some of them do look, the reality is that there are a lot of fraudulent teams that simply have too many issues or lack the talent and depth to make a deep run here. The best option on the board is probably the biggest favorite going with Brazil at +400 since their team is just too stacked at every position and they are going to be very tough for anyone to beat. The next best option if looking for some value though is Netherlands at +1200 as they have one of the best teams in the tournament and are being highly undervalued as they are the best darkhorse on the board. The next best option would be to go with Germany at +1000 as you are getting a ton of value for a very good team that can score a lot of goals, but they also have their defensive issues which only makes them 3rd on this list. The 2 best options to bet futures on this World Cup are Brazil and Netherlands, and it is not even close how far ahead of everyone else these two teams are. 

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Europa League Futures

Thursday, Sep 08, 2022

The Europa League is starting and it is time to discuss possible futures on a team to win the tournament outright. This is a much harder tournament to predict than the Champions League considering that the champion of this league may not even be in the tournament yet and could end up being a club that has fallen out of Champions League later on in the competition. There are still plenty of talented teams right now though, so let’s take a look at which teams can really go the distance and last against those other teams that could drop into the tournament later on. To Win Outright Arsenal +550: Arsenal stands out as the biggest favorite on the board here right now, and they very well could end up in the finals with the team they have put together for this year. They have already started their Premier League season very hot with a 5-0-1 record and they spent a lot of money in the transfer window to add some big pieces and improve this team. Gabriel Jesus was just one of the big pieces they acquired to boost their attack and they also made countless other moves to boost their midfield and defense as well. They have a very good chance of going deep into the tournament and even winning it as they are one of the best teams in the Premier League this season and even have a very good chance of finishing top 4 getting back into Champions League. This is going to be a dominant team this year that will surely be a future Champions League team and they have the talent to make a deep run here. Manchester United +800: Man Utd comes up as the next biggest favorite on the list here. They are a club that has been struggling for years with disappointing season after disappointing season. They have had countless managers over the last few years even though this team has plenty of talent to be a contender. They have started to play much better in the Premier League recently after their first two embarrassing matches, but they are still a few pieces away from being an elite team in Europe. Most of their problems stem from the front office and bad decision making on their part. They finally have a manager that is turning things around slowly but this team still needs one more key piece in the midfield and on defense to really strengthen this lineup from top to bottom. They definitely have players that can score goals but their defense needs improvement and until they make a move to improve that, they will not be able to go all the way and compete with some of the stronger teams they may see drop down. The odds are tempting but until they change owners and make a few more big moves in the transfer window, this will not be a contending team.  Roma +1400: Roma comes up as the next on the list here and they are a team that made a ton of moves in the transfer window to improve their team. They picked up Dybala to really improve their attack and they have a lot of depth and quality players at both the midfield and defense positions. They have had a good start to their season in Serie A but they have really struggled to score goals against some of the bigger clubs in the league. Any matches they have won so far have been either very close in score by around 1 goal or they blew out a very bad opponent. They are the kind of team that plays very well against the bad teams but struggles to score on good defenses. They have a very good defense themselves as they have not allowed many goals in their matches, even against the better teams, and this is a defense that can take them very far in this tournament. They have the talent to be a top 4 team in Italy and their defense is good enough to keep them in any match with a chance to win, but their attack needs to start clicking and scoring lots of goals before they become a real contender. Roma did go very far in last year’s Europa Conference League as they ended up winning the title, and they have only made their team even better since then. The attack is still questionable on this team though, they have the potential to go very far in Europa League with that great defense and are a true contender to win here, but until they fix their attack and start to score goals more efficiently they are not my favorite team to win this tournament. Real Betis +2500: Real Betis is the final team we will be discussing here. They are tied with 2 other teams at +2500 to win the tournament, Lazio and Real Sociedad, but of those 3 clubs Real Betis really has the best team of the group and the best chance of going deep into this competition. Real Betis is coming off of a great season where they finished 5th place in La Liga just 5 points out of a Champions League spot. They have a much stronger team this season though, and with the recent collapse of Sevilla they have a very good chance of being a Champions League team next year as they are just that good. Their strength comes in their home matches but they still play very well away from home and they have a great defense that can take them far in this tournament. They do not allow many goals in their matches, especially when they are at home, and it will be hard to rip points away from them at home in this competition as they are very good. They also have a very good attack that can score a lot of goals and this attack will be able to bail them out in a lot of away matches where their defense is allowing goals. This is a team that can keep up with the elite teams in Europe, they just played a match against Real Madrid in their league but even though they lost that match 2-1, they still went into Madrid and played very well giving them a good fight the entire match. Real Betis is a true contender to go all the way and win this tournament as a very nice darkhorse. RecommendationsThis was just a closer look at the top 4 favorites to win the tournament but once again, the winner of this tournament may not even be in the competition yet as it could end up being a drop down team from Champions League. These are the best teams in the competition so far though, and some of them have a real chance while others do not. My picks for the winner of this tournament as it stands would be Arsenal at +550 as they have the best team in the competition right now and are easily a Champions League level team this year with the moves they made, and my darkhorse is Real Betis at +2500 as they also have a very good team that plays against strong competition in Spain and they are a team that can score a lot of goals but defend well when they need to and they always come with a very smart strategy to get the best possible outcomes in their matches.

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Champions League Futures

Tuesday, Sep 06, 2022

The Champions League group stage is upon us and it is time to dive in and take a closer look at which teams are true contenders here to go deep in the tournament possibly even winning it all, and to see who are just frauds who may look like they have a chance on the surface but really just don’t cut it. There were a lot of big moves made this summer, some teams getting much stronger than they were last year and others left in a much weaker position overall. Let’s take a look at the top favorites to win the tournament and see who really does have a good chance. To Win Outright Manchester City +250: Man City is coming off of another great campaign in the Premier League, winning another title last season and they also had a lot of success in Champions League as well. They made it all the way to the semi-finals before losing to Real Madrid who went on to win the whole thing, but Man City has been a very dominant team in Europe over the past few years. They did lose some talent in the transfer window with the exits of Raheem Sterling and Gabriel Jesus, but as always they did their best to fill the hole and ended up signing Erling Haaland who has already made his impact on the team with 10 goal scored in his first 6 league matches with the team. They have had a few slip ups to start the season but they are still unbeaten in their 6 matches so far and they have looked very good in their 4 wins. It is clear that this team has not taken a step back from last year and considering how much depth they have on their bench at every position, they are by far one of the strongest teams in the competition and will be looking to repeat their deep run last year but this time complete it going all the way to the title. They also have one of the weaker groups to play in and should have no issues getting through the group stage. This is a team that really can beat anyone in Europe on a day they bring their best effort. Paris Saint-Germain +500: PSG is coming off of another successful campaign last year as they won their French Ligue 1 title and did go deep into Champions League as well, but they were eliminated by the eventual champions, Real Madrid, in the round of 16. PSG is another team that just continues to get stronger every year, they did lose some midfield talent in the transfer window but they are so deep at that position that it should not be an issue to fill in the holes that were left. They also have one of the strongest attacking trios of all the teams between Messi, Mbappe, and Neymar, and they have already been in midseason form to start the season with the amount of goals this team has been scoring. The decision Mbappe made to stay with PSG had a very big impact on the team and really boosted their chances of going deep in this tournament as they have one of the best squads on paper. That has also turned into reality with the way they have been playing in their first few matches, and there is no doubt that they are also a team that can beat anyone in Europe when bringing their best effort. They do play in a very tough group as they have some good quality teams in Juventus and Benfica to get through, but those teams will be good tests for them and they should still have no trouble making it out of the group as they are by far the superior team in there. They should have a much deeper run than they did last season. Liverpool +550: Liverpool is coming off of a good year in both Champions League and the Premier League, but this is a team that suffered the cruel fate last season of always being a bridesmaid and never a bride. They finished their Premier League season in 2nd place, just 1 point behind the title champions Man City, and they lost to Real Madrid in the Champions League finals 1-0 as well. They have been a dominant team in Europe over the past few years but those seasons are long gone now and this is not the same Liverpool team that we have seen the last few years. Liverpool made some big changes in the transfer window, including their biggest loss in Sadio Mane leaving for Bayern Munich and so far, the impact of that move has been very apparent. They tried to replace Mane by acquiring Darwin Nunez from Benfica but that signing has just brought more problems to this team. Mane left a big hole in the starting XI as a big part of the Liverpool attack is feeding Mo Salah the ball and with a competent forward like Mane who really controls the pace of the game, their attack has been left in shambles. It has only gotten worse with the insertion of Nunez into the lineup as the team has 2 very good and high maintenance strikers now who both need touches on the ball, and they still do not have a solid midfielder or forward to take over that role and compensate for them, making their attack more fluid into the box. They have been in awful form to start the Premier League season already, but they are not going to get any better with the current state of things and this is definitely a team that has been left off in a much worse position than they were last season. They will not be making another deep run in Champions League this season and they will start to be in a downturn moving forward. Bayern Munich +650: Bayern Munich is coming off of another great campaign in their league last season, winning yet another title but they have also been the dominant force in that league for over a decade now. They had a deep run in Champions League last season but fizzled out in the quarter-finals, losing to a Villarreal side that is not even one of the dominant forces in their own league let alone Europe. Bayern has looked very good to start this season but they have not had a real test yet as they are by far the best team in their league, but they have made a lot of big changes to their squad that will be key when facing some tougher opponents. They had a huge loss with the exit of Robert Lewandowski to Barcelona and they tried to replace him with Sadio Mane from Liverpool. Mane is a very good piece to add and he will help add some consistency to this team with the way they form their attack but, he is nowhere near the kind of goal scorer Lewandowski is and when push comes to shove against these tougher opponents in UCL, their attack is not going to cut it against some of these elite defenses. Bayern is also a team that has struggled with their defense over the last few seasons as they give up a lot of goals. They did spend a lot of money to fix up their defense for this season but they have not been tested against a good quality team yet and their defense still does not compare to some of the other elite teams in Europe. Bayern always has the possibility of making a deep run because of their strong attack and how many goals they can score, but they were stunted by a Villarreal side last year that is not an elite team but does have a very good defense, and Bayern will likely run into similar troubles with some of these top defenses in the competition. This is not a team that is going the distance to the finals. Real Madrid +1000: Real Madrid is the team that is probably coming off of the most successful season as they won their La Liga title last year but also came away with the Champions League title as well. They did not make any big changes to their starting squad in the transfer window but they did win both their league title and Champions League title, and when coming off of a great season like that why fix what isn’t broken? Well they took that to heart and this core group is still very much the same and still playing at an extremely high level as they were last year. It is amazing to see the odds this high for the defending champions of the competition and they were a team that probably had the hardest road to the finals with some of the teams they had to knock out, but they still got the job done. Benzema and Vinicius have already been scoring a ton of goals in their first few matches and this team is in midseason form already, ready to repeat what they did last season. Even with the little moves they made in the transfer window, they still have one of the best teams in the competition and should be ahead of some of these other teams favored to win the tournament over them. After the year they had last season and the way they have come out this season, this is still a very dangerous team that has a chance to go all the way and win the title like they did last year. Barcelona +1400: Barcelona is a team that has been struggling over the last few seasons ever since Messi left and really started the downfall of this team. They have still finished in the top 4 of their league without him but they have not been able to keep up with some of the best in the league. That has all changed now though as they have rebuilt this squad and spent a lot of money in doing so by bringing in a ton of quality players. It is not just the quality of players they have brought in though, they were having troubles paying everyone they signed and there were players on this team that were willing to take pay cuts just to play for the team this season because that is the kind of passion these players have for both the club and winning with the club. That shows that this team has a very strong core of quality players that all want to be there and win together, and they have signed so much talent in the transfer window that they really should be one of the favorites to win Champions League. One of their biggest signings in the summer was acquiring Robert Lewandowski from Bayern Munich and that has really put their attack into full gear, but they also signed a lot of supporting midfielder talent that will help this attack form much better and cut through defenses the way they have been doing in their first few matches of the season. This is definitely one of the stronger teams in Europe right now and they have a very good chance of winning this tournament and even winning their league title this year as well. They are by far the biggest darkhorse on the board and there is too much value to turn them down because this is a team that can go the distance. RecommendationsThere are a lot of good options here for betting on Champions League futures and it is still very early in the competition as the group stage is just starting but, there is definitely enough to go on here when picking a team and it is definitely not too early to see which teams are stay away teams. Liverpool and Bayern Munich are definitely teams to stay away from with the current state they are in; they just do not have the talent at all positions to go all the way. The best way to bet the Champions League here for futures would be to take Barcelona at +1400 as they are a team that is very undervalued and could easily end up in the semi-finals at least. The next team would be PSG at +500 as their team is just too good all around and they will still be thinking about the way they exited to Real Madrid last year. My 3rd team to take on this list is Man City at +250 as they are the favorites for obvious reasons and continue to have a very stacked team that can go all the way with their talent. And finally, Real Madrid at +1000 would be the last team I consider, this is no knock on them as they do still have a very good team and are the defending champions but, they are my least favorite as playing all of those extra matches to the finals last season likely put a bit of a toll on them and while other powerhouses were spending money in the transfer window to make their clubs better to beat Real Madrid, Real really did not make any major moves to improve their team. These are my best suggestions for finding value on outright winners in the Champions League and remember to always bet responsibly!

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La Liga Futures

Saturday, Aug 13, 2022

The La Liga season has started and it is time to discuss possible futures in this league and see who has the best chance to win this title. A lot of these teams have been making big moves to get back in contention and the title race is not very clear cut here, despite Real Madrid being the defending title champions and the Champions League champions from last season. There are a few teams that have made big moves to challenge Real Madrid for that title this season and it is time to see who really has the best chance. To Win Outright Real Madrid +120: Real Madrid is coming off of a very successful season, not only winning the La Liga title but also winning the Champions League title as well. They won the league handedly last season, leading the 2nd place team by 13 points, but they have also won the league title 2 times in the last 3 seasons, and they have finished in the top 3 of the league for well over the past decade. Their team did not change much over the transfer window and why would they make any big changes when they are league champions and champions of Europe. Their biggest losses of the summer were left-back Marcelo who has been aging, right winger Garreth Bale who rarely played for the club over the last few years, and attacking midfield Isco who left on a free transfer to Sevilla. Isco was probably their biggest loss as he actually contributed to the team in providing depth for the midfield but this is still a very deep team with tons of talent and they did add centre-back Antonio Rudiger as well to add to this already stacked defense. Real Madrid has shown with their consistency in the league that they are always a threat to win the title and it is not often you will see them at this plus money price considering they are the best team in Europe right now.  Barcelona +125: Barcelona is coming into this season off of 3 straight seasons where they have not won the title. They have been a very successful team in La Liga for a while now though, finishing in the top 3 every year over the last decade with 5 titles in that span. They have not won a title since Messi left the team a few years ago but they have made some big moves in this transfer window and are clearly making a big push for the title this season after 3 straight seasons where they have not won it. They did lose some good players in the transfer window, losing centre-forward Luuk de Jong and right winger Adama Traore at the end of their loans as they were bought out, and they also lost left winger Philippe Coutinho to Aston Villa. Their defense also lost some players such as centre-back Clement Lenglet who is out on loan and right-back Dani Alves who left on a free transfer. They made a great effort to replace these losses though and did so with even higher quality players. Their 3 big signings this summer were right winger Raphinha from Leeds, centre-back Jules Kounde from Sevilla, and centre-forward Robert Lewandowski from Bayern Munich. They also picked up central midfield Franck Kessie from AC Milan and centre-back Andreas Christensen from Chelsea on free transfers. This team is much improved from last season, they already had a lot of depth in their midfield but added to it even more while also strengthening both their defense and attack with upgrades at most positions. They have always been a good team even in their down years but they are making that big push with these signings and they are truly a real contender this season.  Atletico Madrid +600: Atletico Madrid is a team that has been very successful in La Liga for many years as they have finished in the top 3 every year over the last decade, winning 2 titles in that span. They usually finish in 3rd place though behind Barcelona and Real Madrid, and they did not make many good moves to help their team get better for this season. Their transfer window was looking good as there were rumors of swapping Griezman for Ronaldo but Man Utd has shut down those hopes and that leaves Atletico Madrid in a funny place. They ended up losing centre-forward Luis Suarez in a free transfer to Nacional and the loss of central midfield Daniel Wass was not that great for them either. They did pick up defensive midfield Axel Witsel but he is not getting any younger as he nears the end of his career, and they also got centre-forward Alvaro Morata back from loan but there are even rumors of him leaving for Man Utd still. Other than that, their biggest signings of the summer were right-back Nahuel Molina from Udinese and left winger Samuel Lino from Gil Vicente, and those do not even do much to help boost their squad much here. What was shaping up to be a great summer for them has turned into one giant dud and with Barcelona signing all the players they can, also competing in the same league as the Champions League champions, there is just too much competition in this league for Atletico to be a real contender this season. RecommendationsEvery other team in this league is priced at more than +2000 to win the league title and for good reason as these three are the only 3 teams that really have a chance to win, and no other team other than these 3 has won the title in well over a decade as well. Atletico Madrid is certainly not much of a contender this season with the moves they have been making and that leaves us with just the 2 giants in Barcelona and Real Madrid. Real Madrid does look tempting as they are both the defending La Liga and Champions League title champions, but they could be in for a down year here after so much success last season, and they did not make many moves to change their squad either. Barcelona knows the team they have to beat and they went out this transfer window to upgrade every position to give themselves the best chance at winning the title and beating out Real Madrid. Barcelona is going to have a very good team this season and after 3 straight seasons of not winning the La Liga title, they will be hungry for one here and will do whatever it takes to make it happen. The only play here is Barcelona to win the title this season at +125.

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SERIE A FUTURES

Monday, Aug 08, 2022

The Italian Serie A is coming back this weekend and it is time to discuss possible futures for this league as there is a lot of value to be found with these teams. A lot of the smaller European leagues have come back already and even some of the bigger ones such as the Premier League in England, but Italy gets another week to prepare and some big moves have been made in and out of this league in this transfer window.To Win Outright Inter Milan +175: Inter Milan is coming off of a season where they finished in 2nd place, just 2 points behind their rival team AC Milan who went on to win the title last season. Inter Milan has had a lot of success in Serie A over the last few years though. They have finished in the top 4 of the league for 5 straight seasons now and they have finished top 2 or better in the last 3 straight seasons with 1 title win in that span. They were very close to winning it again last season, which would have made it 2 straight seasons for them, but they fell short and have made some big moves in the transfer window to try and get back there this year. They have been very active both losing and gaining a lot of players. Some of the biggest departures for them include the midfielders Arturo Vidal, Matias Vecino, and Ivan Perisic who all left on free transfers but this team has always been very deep at midfield and they still have a lot of quality players to fill in the holes these players may have left. They have always been a very strong team defensively and with their midfield but they have been lacking that goal scorer that will help galvanize their attack. They fixed that problem in the transfer window as they acquired Romelu Lukaku on loan from Chelsea, who is very familiar with this squad as he was on the team that won the title 2 years ago, and they also bought out Joaquin Correa from Lazio who was with Inter Milan on loan. This is going to be a better team than they were last season with a much improved attack and even though they are the favorite here, they are still at plus money and probably have the best chance at reclaiming the title this season. Juventus +187: Juventus is coming off of a season where they finished in 4th place and they have finished in 4th place for 2 straight seasons now after dominating this league for so long. Juventus has been a very dominant team in this league over the last decade, winning 9 straight titles between the years 2011 and 2020. They have been slipping in the last 2 seasons though, finishing 4th place both times, and they really have not been signing many star players to pull them out of this funk. They lost some big names in this transfer window, a lot of those players were aging as well and have not been the same players they used to be, but they also have not done much to replace them. Some of these players include centre-back Giorgio Chiellini, central midfield Aaron Ramsey, right winger Douglas Costa, right winger Frederico Bernardeschi, and one younger big name that also left on a free transfer and still has a lot left in the tank is second striker Paulo Dybala who left to be a starter at Roma. Some of the really big names they also lost include centre-back Merih Demiral and centre-back Matthijs de Ligt, both players who are major losses to this club and will only hurt the team going forward. They did make some signings to try and replace the players they lost but their biggest signings were centre-back Bremer and right wing Frederico Chiesa. They also picked up central midfield Paul Pogba and right winger Angel Di Maria, once again replacing aging players that left the club with more aging players who have not been the same as when they were in their prime for a while now. Once again this team is lacking some real young star players and have a very old team in age on average. Juventus will once again not be a threat to the title this season unless they make some bigger moves and they should not be anywhere near this kind of price as they will be lucky to slip into the top 4 once again. AC Milan +400: AC Milan is coming off of a season where they finally won the Serie A title for the first time in over a decade. AC Milan went through years of disappointment where they could not even get back into European competition but they have finally made some big moves over the last few years and have really improved this team. They have finished top 2 the last 2 seasons, winning the title last season, but they also came very close the year before when Inter Milan won it. “Don’t fix what isn’t broken,” well AC Milan really took this to heart this transfer window as they were a very active team with a lot of players coming and leaving the club, but a large majority of the players that made up the starters and the bench for this title winning team are still back with the club for another run at the title this season and a shot at Champions League as well. The two biggest names to leave the club this year that were really part of that core group last season are centre-back Alessio Romagnoli and central midfield Franck Kessie. These departures certainly do not help the squad but they are also pretty deep at those positions and did make some signings to replace those players as well. They were able to acquire centre-forward Divock Origi from Liverpool on a free transfer and they signed attacking midfielder Charles De Ketelaere from Club Brugge. They always had a good defense last season and they have not really lost any key players that are going to hurt them this season. The moves they made will actually help their attack out which could use some strengthening and more firepower, and that makes them an even more dangerous team than they were last season. This is the defending title champions and they really made no big moves that hurt their club this season, their squad is generally the same and they did win last season so they are very live to win the title once again here. Roma +800: Roma is coming into this season off of a few bad years where they have missed out on Champions League but they made a splash in the transfer window this year and they are a much improved squad. Roma finished in 6th place last season but they have not been able to crack the top 4 over the last 4 straight seasons. They are making a big push this year though as they retained most of their quality players and even went on to bring in some more big names to boost this squad. One of the biggest contributors they lost was attacking midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan as he left on a free transfer to Inter Milan but they made a lot of moves to replace him and some of the other supporting cast that left as well. They really boosted their defense by signing right-back Zeki Celik from Lille and they made a lot of moves to strengthen this midfield as well. They signed defensive midfielder Nemanja Matic from Man Utd on a free transfer and acquired central midfield Georginio Wijnaldum on a loan from PSG. Their attack was always something left on the weaker side as they never really had that striker and Henrikh Mkhitaryan provided a lot of offense for them last season, but they really made some big moves to fix that by signing second striker Paulo Dybala and left-winger Justin Kluivert. Roma is making a big push this season to win that title with the signings they have made, they may not be the team to win the title this season but they definitely have a very good chance of getting back into the top 4 this season. RecommendationsThere is definitely a lot of value in this league with some of these teams being such big underdogs to win the title. Juventus is definitely one team that is priced incorrectly and they are really not a real contender in this league until they make some bigger moves to compete with the top teams. Inter Milan is the favorite to win and they do have some value still, getting them at +175 and they already had a very good team that did not need much improvement. Roma is another team that has made a lot of big signings and looks to be all in for this season, and there is a lot of value in getting them at +800 as they have put together a very good squad that will do well this season. AC Milan also has some value at +400 as they are the defending title champions but really, their team is not that strong and it was a shock they were so good last season. They will likely regress a little this season and a lot of the heart in that team comes from the aging Zlatan Ibrahimovic who is not getting any younger. In conclusion, the best way to approach this season would be to take Inter Milan +175 to win the title and Roma +800 as a dark horse team to win the title, but there is also a lot of value in Roma to make the top 4 at -110 and that is where I stand on this Serie A season.

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England Premier League Futures

Thursday, Jul 28, 2022

The Premier League is just around the corner now with the first match kicking off on August 5th. Normally the Premier League would start near the end of August but due to the World Cup being in November later this year, the Premier League is kicking off almost a whole month early to accommodate the interruption in their schedule during that time. There have been some big moves with these clubs in this transfer window though, and it is time to break down who has the best shot at winning the Premier League title this season. To Win Outright Manchester City -163: Man City is the big favorite on the board to win the title as they are the defending champions here. They have won the last 2 straight titles and 4 of the last 5, finishing in 2nd place only 1 of those seasons to Liverpool. They have been a dominant force in the Premier League for years now, buying all the top talent available to them and stacking their team with so much depth that even their 2nd squad could be starters on another team. They have made some big moves in this transfer window though, both acquiring and losing some big names. Fernandinho left on a free transfer to Athletico PR in Brasil while left-back Oleksandr Zinchenko was sold to Arsenal. Their attack also lost some fire power with centre-forward Gabriel Jesus getting sold to Arsenal as well while left winger Raheem Sterling was the blockbuster deal leaving for Chelsea. Man City did not do much to fill these holes but they still have a very deep team and made 2 big acquisitions that will help take over the roles of the players they lost. They acquired defensive midfielder Kalvin Phillips from Leeds to fill in the hole left by Fernandinho and possibly even Zinchenko. Their other blockbuster deal though was the acquisition of centre-forward Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund. Haaland will fill in the hole left by Jesus nicely as he scored a lot of goals in his short time at Dortmund. There is not much value on Man City to win the title here but with a team that has been so dominant in the league for years now and spending the kind of money they have been spending, it is hard to see another team that can touch them with all of their bench depth still. Liverpool +250: Liverpool is the 2nd team on the board here to win the title in the Premier League this season. Liverpool has not been as successful as Man City has been in the league recently but Liverpool has still had a lot of success. They have finished in 2nd place 2 of their last 4 seasons and even have 1 title win in that span, with their other season seeing them finish 3rd place that year. They may have finished 2nd place to Man City last season but they were the only team remotely close to catching them as they finished just 1 point behind Man City in a title race that really came down to the last few matches. They have lost a few big names in the transfer window this season though, and their team is not as deep as it was last season now. They saw centre-forward Divock Origi make his exit to AC Milan in a free transfer while centre-back Ben Davies was sold to Rangers FC. They also sold their developing left winger Takumi Minamino to Monaco but the big story was Sadio Mane leaving for Bayern Munich. They did not make a lot of big signings to fill in these holes either, with their biggest move being the acquisition of centre-forward Darwin Nunez from Benfica. None of their other acquisitions will be much help in their title hopes this season and their team is likely left in a worse position this season than they were in last season. The odds may look tempting here to take Liverpool since they have been the closest team to challenging Man City over the last few seasons, but this is not the same Liverpool team and they will feel the effects of some of the players they have lost this season.  Tottenham +1200: Tottenham is the 3rd team on the board here to win the Premier League title this season, but a very sizable gap in odds between them and the 2nd team Liverpool. Tottenham finished in 4th last season just hanging onto that spot by the end of the year and this is their first season back in Champions League after missing out on the top 4 the last 2 seasons. They are finally back in Champions League this season though and they will be on the hunt for both titles with some of the moves they have made this transfer window. They did not lose many players at all with their biggest loss being the departure of left winger Steven Bergwijn to Ajax. They made a lot of signings though and really strengthened their defense and their depth for this season, which has been a big issue that has plagued them over the last few seasons. They had some developing players return from loan such as central midfielders Tanguy Ndombele and Giovani Lo Celso who are both much improved now. They also picked up centre-back Clement Lenglet on loan from Barcelona and signed Ivan Perisic on a free transfer from Inter Milan to help strengthen their defense and midfield. They also made some other moves to help their defense and midfield but the big signing of the summer to help boost their attack was the acquisition of centre-forward Richarlison from Everton. They have already added a lot of depth to their team and still had a strong core to work with, with none of their core players really leaving in the transfer window. Tottenham made a big run a few years ago where they won the Premier League title and a Champions League title, and this feels like a similar year with the money they have been spending. It is tough to say that they will challenge Man City for the title here but if looking for a long shot play, Tottenham has a lot of upside this season and a ton of value with this number. Chelsea +1600: Chelsea is the 4th team on the list of teams to win the Premier League title this season. Chelsea finished in 3rd place last season and they have been a very consistent team in the Premier League for years, finishing in the top 4 of the league the last 4 straight seasons. They have not had a higher finish than 3rd place in that span though and the team has begun to unravel in this transfer window. Chelsea made a lot of moves and spent a lot of money a few years ago between hiring a new manager and bringing in all of these defensive players which gave them one of the best defenses in the league for years. They were shifting their focus more to their attacking last season though, when defense has been their staple for a while now, and they made a lot of signings to help boost their attack. They did not do much to help their defense though and they have been shedding a lot of their high quality defensemen in this transfer window. They sent away their star centre-forward Romelu Lukaku on loan back to Inter Milan for this season but where they are really going to hurt is with the loss of centre-backs Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen, and they did not do much to fill in these holes. They did acquire centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly from Napoli and also returned some players from loan that will help their defense, but with more rumors still about Azpilicueta leaving and others, they have not done nearly enough to replenish this defense with the same talent they had leaving in the transfer window. Their blockbuster deal was the acquisition of left winger Raheem Sterling from Manchester City but he is not enough to turn this mediocre attack and fading defense into a title contender. Chelsea has never really finished in the top 2 over the past few seasons when they were playing very well, and they are not a real contender to win the title this season with the moves they have been making.  RecommendationsThe obvious choice here is to go with Manchester City at the -163 to win the title here. Man City has been a dominant force in the Premier League for years now and they have had repeated success winning the title and competing in Champions League where they have been holding up with the best teams across Europe. They did almost lose the title to Liverpool last season but Liverpool is not the same team anymore while Man City has continued to retain their talent and depth with another strong transfer window. Another way to go about this if looking for a better price than the -163 is to take a shot on Tottenham at +1200 to win the title here. They may not be able to challenge Man City this season but they have been spending a lot of money and are not even done yet. They have fixed some issues they had in their defense and midfield, and they have also acquired some pieces to help with their attack and bench depth. They may not have had a lot of success over the last few years but they have made a big run like this before in the last decade and when they start spending money like the way they have been recently, they mean business. They are the closest team to challenge Man City this season and you can even get a nice +250 on them to finish top 2 as they should beat Liverpool in the table. It is hard to find value in a league with such a strong force like Man City, but the best way to go about this is Man City to win -163, Tottenham to win +1200, and Tottenham to finish top 2 +250.

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Copa Libertadores Futures

Wednesday, Jul 13, 2022

The Copa Libertadores quarter-finals are approaching, the first matches scheduled to start on August 2. With just a few weeks away it is time to discuss which of these teams have a real shot at going all the way and taking all the glory for themselves, and which of these teams are just frauds that do not belong despite the great journey they have been on. The round of 16 concluded with a lot of obvious choices making it through. There were a few surprises like Boca Juniors getting eliminated 6-5 in penalties after two scoreless draws with the Corinthians, and also the shocking exit of Argentina giant River Plate. The path is set all the way to the finals now and some teams have an easier road than others so it is time to take a look at who can go all the way and lift the trophy here. Copa Libertadores Outrights Flamengo +250 - Flamengo has been a giant in the Brasileiro Serie A for many years now. They have had plenty of success over the last few seasons, winning the league title 3 straight years (2018, 2019, 2020), and they have finished in the top 2 of the league the last 5 straight seasons, including last season where they finished 2nd place to Atletico Mineiro. They have had some success in this competition as well as they have appeared in 3 Copa Libertadores finals in their club history, winning in 2 of those 3 finals appearances. A lot of that success has also been recent, winning it back in 2019 with a 2-1 win over River Plate and they even went to the FIFA Club World Cup finals that year, losing to Liverpool 1-0 in a match that needed extra time to settle. Their last appearance in the Copa Libertadores finals was just last season as they lost 2-1 to Palmeiras, but they have consistently shown their dominance in this continent and even around the world over the last few years. They are getting the Corinthians in the quarter-finals who they have already suffered a 1-0 loss to very recently on an own goal but the Corinthians have not been scoring many goals recently either while Flamengo is playing in some of their best form all season. If Flamengo can make it through to the semi-finals, they will be facing the winner of Velez Sarsfield and Talleres Cordoba. Neither of those teams are really near being the strongest in their own Argentina league so Flamengo has a pretty nice road to the finals if they can through to the semis. Once in the finals, they could be facing either Palmeiras, Atletico Mineiro, Athletico Paranaense, or Estudiantes. That side of the tournament is a lot stronger than what Flamengo had to go through, with the 2 top contenders there being Atletico Mineiro and Palmeiras. Flamengo lost to Palmeiras in the finals last season but they have had a lot of success against them overall in recent head-to-head matches and they will surely be out for revenge here so it is very possible for Flamengo to take them down with the talent on that team. On the other hand, they have not had a lot of success against Atletico Mineiro recently if they end up making it through but Atletico MG has also been slipping in form recently, still playing great defense in their matches but their attack has not looked good and Flamengo is a scoring machine that could overpower them in a potential final. Flamengo is the favored team to win the tournament but for very good reason as they are one of the best teams on the continent and a bet on them to win the finals here would not be throwing money away. Palmeiras +300 - Palmeiras is another team that is a Brasilian giant and they have had plenty of success in their league and Copa Libertadores over the many years. They have a very long history of being dominant in South America, finishing in the top 3 of their league 5 of the last 6 seasons and they even won the league title back in 2016 and 2018. They are coming off of a 3rd place finish in the league last season but they did win Copa Libertadores for the 2nd year straight. They have made 6 finals appearances in their club history, winning 3 of those trophies, and they have won the Copa Libertadores the last 2 straight years now and looking to defend their title again here, trying to make it 3 straight years. They have one of the best teams in Brasil by far with their talent level and they blew their opponent away in the last round with an 8-0 win on aggregate. They will have a much tougher road to the finals on their side of the tournament, taking one one of the toughest teams left in the quarter-finals. They will have to go through Atletico Mineiro first, who won the Brasileiro Serie A title last season, but they have not been in their best form recently and if they do not get things figured out quickly then Palmeiras will be sure to dispose of them. These two teams have drawn many times in their last few head-to-head matches though and this could be a very close round between these two. If Palmeiras manages to get by Atletico Mineiro then they will be facing the winner of the Athletico Paranaense and Estudiantes match in the semi-finals. Both of those teams have been playing very well in their respective domestic leagues and they have both been very focused on their Copa Libertadores matches as well, playing extremely well in those matches and excelling at home especially. It will be tough to go on the road and face either of these teams but Palmeiras still has one of the best teams in South America and they should be able to dispose of either side after 2 legs against them. If they can get past the semis and go all the way to the finals then they will be left with facing either Flamengo, Corinthians, Velez Sarsfield, or Talleres Cordoba, and considering the strength of field here it will very likely be Flamengo in the finals. Palmeiras beat Flamengo in the finals last year and they could very well do it again here. If they end up facing a different team in the finals that is not Flamengo then they will likely win for sure but Flamengo is a team that could really challenge them after what happened last season. Palmeiras could very well go all the way here and win the whole competition, they have the talent and the team to do it as back-to-back defending champions, but the reality is that this is not a very good bet considering how low their odds are with the strength of the competition they would have to face in every round just to get to the finals.  Atletico Mineiro +400 - Atletico Mineiro is coming off of a great year where they won the Brasileiro Serie A title but their rise back to glory has been very recent as they have only finished in the top 3 of their league the last 2 season and were a struggling club for many seasons prior to those. They may be working their way back to the top of Brasil again but they have not had much success throughout the years in this Copa Libertadores competition, only making 1 finals appearance in club history and winning it that 1 time. They were kicked out of the semi-finals last year by Palmeiras and now have to go through that same Brasilian powerhouse in the quarter-finals here, with them being back-to-back Copa Libertadores champions as well. Atletico Mineiro has had a lot of success against Palmeiras in recent matches but that success has not translated over to Copa Libertadores, where Palmeiras focuses most of their efforts, and Atletico Mineiro has also been slipping in form recently as they struggled to get by a club from Ecuador that had not played any competitive matches in over a month before facing them. Atletico Mineiro is likely not going to get by Palmeiras in this round, they might do it but even if they do Athletico PR and Estudiantes could easily give them trouble with how good those teams are at home and the road seems like it is just too tough for Atletico MG to make it all the way to the finals where they would have to face another tough team, and they just have not shown that they are up for the challenge with their lethargic effort in the last round. Atletico Mineiro may be the reigning Brasilian champions but do not let that fool you, they are not a real contender in this competition this year. Corinthians +900 - Corinthians is a team that has been very mediocre in their league over the years. They have been qualifying for these tournaments by going through the process and focusing on their matches but they have not been making it easy on themselves year after year. Corinthians won the Brasileiro Serie A title back in 2015 and 2017 but every year since then has not been good for them as they have had no top 4 finishes in the league. They finished 5th last season having to play some extra matches and have still ended up here in the quarter-finals through great defensive performances but their defense is going to be their downfall here. They have not been scoring any goals in their recent matches and those are troubles that they cannot be dealing with this late in the tournament. Their form has been slipping in both their league and Copa Libertadores, and they just advanced to this round through two scoreless draws. They have a very good defense that can keep some clean sheets in their matches but their attack is also nowhere to be found and that is going to be a big problem for them with some of these Brasilian powerhouses left in the competition that have defenses just as good as the Corinthians do, but also have a strong attack to score goals and put them on top. They have to face Flamengo in the quarters who is one of those teams with a great defense but can score a lot of goals and has been doing so in their recent matches. Corinthians will not be able to get by them here but even if the manage to somehow, they would have to face the winner of Velez Sarsfield and Talleres Cordoba who are both not as strong as Flamengo, but they both play a similar defensive style that either could end up beating Corinthians in penalties if it really came down to defense. Then in the finals, they would have gone through the easiest route to get there putting themselves in a position where any of the 4 teams on the other side of the bracket could lay a beating on them as they all have great defenses but can score goals as well. The odds may look tempting here, but Corinthians is the weakest Brasilian team left in the field here. Even Athletico PR is a better team and has a better chance of winning than Corinthians but the road will just be too hard for both. Corinthians is not a real contender here and will likely be out after the next round.  RecommendationsAfter breaking down the 4 best teams left in the competition the only thing left is to say which bets are the best to make here. When looking for an outright winner, Flamengo at +250 is the best way to go here. They are the favored team to win the tournament but they also have the easiest road to get to the finals as they are the best team on their side of the bracket by far so the value is with them to make a deep run. They have also won it in the last 3 years and have been performing at elite levels as a club consistently for the last few years. They can match up against any team they face in the finals and winning the competition is a very real possibility for them this season. Another great bet to take with Flamengo is them to reach the finals at +100 as it has been discussed before about how their road to the finals is very easy and if they lose in this tournament it will most likely be there. One other team to consider when picking an outright winner in Palmeiras as they are the back-to-back defending champions here, beating Flamengo in the finals last season, and they have a good chance of beating any team that ends up in the finals from the other side as long as they can get there. Their more challenging matches will be their actual road to the finals as they will have to face some of the toughest teams left in the next 2 rounds but if they do make it through to the finals, you could be laughing with futures on both them and Flamengo who will likely be the 2 teams in the finals. Flamengo to win outright +250, Palmeiras to win outright +300, Flamengo to reach the finals +100.

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