Is too much Football barely enough? Damn right. There’s certainly plenty around at the moment. Midweek League Cups and Champions League providing the meat for full weekend football sandwiches. There’s even the second qualifying round of the FA Cup thrown in this weekend for the first 100 callers, featuring teams from places that only the locals would know, or names that makes FA Cup interesting.
As ever we’ll point out our favourite bits and pieces and provide the best tips money can buy. Or not.
– LIVERPOOL V MIDDLESBROUGH LEAGUE CUP – as discussed in our Weekly Sport round up, we love a penalty shootout that lasts for 15 kicks a side. We suggest that the sudden death should kick in after all 11 players have had a kick. Overlooked a bit is a fine performance from Middlesbrough who are hopefully on their way to promotion to prove our promotion prediction correct. We is SMRT.
– LEAGUE CUP – Some say it is a waste of time, most of those support teams who haven’t won it for a while, or are blasé about their continued EPL status. There is certainly room for a bit of improvement, we have some ideas so stay put for a future article on how The Gurgler can improve the League Cup.
But for the average fan the League Cup is a welcome midweek distraction, and as a neutral whose team is continually knocked out by lower tier teams in the first round, it is always a chance to wish for a David v Goliath moment.
– LEYTON ORIENT v RUSSELL SLADE – Leyton Orient are a team that have historically fluctuated between Leagues One and Two. Under manager Russell Slade Leyton Orient have threatened to achieve. Last season they made their best start in many years and led the league before bowing out in the playoff final to Rotherham.
This year a run of a few losses and the word on the street was Mr Slade had one game left to save his job. If true, it was certainly not very grateful of the bosses of a man who had done so much. So it was to a fair degree of surprise when a better side than Leyton Orient (ex EPL Cardiff) came calling for Russell Slade. Suddenly Leyton Orient didn’t feel like letting the same person they intended to flick talk to another club.
End result Russell Slade has resigned, will more than likely end up in charge of Cardiff, and Leyton Orient will likely disappear into the fourth tier as their reward.
– LEICESTER 5 MAN UTD 3 – this game proves a lot of things about the EPL. One that hype around Man Utd is tiresome, with people far too quick to jump on bandwagons of opinion going in either direction. Two, that it is easy to dismiss promoted sides due to ignorance. Leicester won the Championship easy last year and have been ultra compeditive against most of the top sides from last year.
Whilst there’s a gulf between top EPL and bottom EPL sides, there is little difference between a good championship side and a lower EPL side. Leicester proving that success is still achievable in the first year of promotion. Although, will go a long way to beat the mighty Ipswich Town’s first year back in 2001.
– Talking of Ipswich Town, they are threatening to achieve something this year with three wins in a row.
Anyways, we’ll keep it short and sweet and give the punters what they really want. Winners.
EPL MULTI – $11
SOUTHAMPTON to beat QPR
ARSENAL to beat Spurs
CHELSEA/ASTON VILLA – Over 2.5 goals
WBA/BURNLEY – Under 2.5 goals
CRYSTAL PALACE/LEICESTER – Under 2.5 goals
CHAMPIONSHIP MULTI – $48
NOTTS FOREST to beat Brighton
BOURNEMOUTH to beat Wigan
IPSWICH to beat Rotherham
DERBY to beat Bolton
CARDIFF to beat Sheffield Wednesday
LEAGUE ONE MULTI – $20
LEYTON ORIENT to beat Rochdale
SHEFFIELD UTD to beat Gillingham
CHESTERFIELD to beat Notts County
Coventry/Preston – Over 2.5 goals
OLDHAM to beat Scunthorpe
LEAGUE TWO MULTI – $101
BURTON to beat Cheltenham
SOUTHEND to beat Shrewsbury
STEVENAGE to beat Mansfield
DRAW – Dagenham / York
BURY to beat Exeter
FA CUP WINNERS Multi price unknown.
FC UTD OF MANCHESTER, HISTON, KETTERING, WEYMOUTH, WHITEHAWK, WEALDSTONE, KINGSTONIAN, MICKLEOVER SPORTS, BOSTON UTD, BRADFORD PARK AVENUE.
FA CUP GURGLER’S FAVOURITE NAME WINNERS. Multi Price unknown.