Picture the scene. It’s Tuesday morning, 2.30am. You wake up in a cold sweat after being denied a proper football fix since the Champions League final. Fleetwood and Rotherham’s Wembley wins just didn’t do the trick, and the World Cup is still over a fortnight away.
Well fear not, as all that’s needed is a dose of late-night ‘soccer’ on the box and – as luck would have it – World Cup-bound Team USA take on Azerbaijan in a pre-Brazil friendly.
Here’s three bets to be getting on with while the coffee pot fills up:
USA to win 1-0, 2-0 or 3-0 @ 13/10
Jurgen Klinsmann’s side’s form has been patchy in the build up to Brazil, with away defeats suffered in Ukraine and Austria adding to a poor goalless draw at Hampden Park against Scotland in November.
However, they’ve been somewhat better at home and three of their last four fixtures in front of the faithful have finished 2-0 to the hosts, an eventuality that can be backed at 19/4 in San Francisco.
Punters signing up with bwin.com today could use the £30 free bet bequeathed on them to back a 1-0, 2-0 or 3-0 USA win, with £39 in pure profit up for grabs should they succeed.
Under 1.5 first-half goals @ 3/5
Klinsmann’s World Cup Group G hopes have been involved in some high-scoring clashes over the last 12 months, including 4-3 and 3-2 away wins against Bosnia and Herzegovina and Panama respectively, yet five of their last seven first-halves have failed to see two or more goals struck.
With the last 19 games featuring Azerbaijan also unable to reach that mark, 3/5 on more of the same at Candlestick Park looks wildly overpriced.
Both teams to score? No @ 11/20
During the aforementioned 19-game run, Berti Vogts’ men have been involved in 12 fixtures that saw just one team find the back of the net, and at least one side has failed to fire in 15 of their last 23 outings.
The same has occurred in six of the Stars and Stripes’ last eight, so expect either USA or Azerbaijan to hog all the action on the west coast.