Well, I did it. On a crowded train today, I let out the biggest tut I have ever mustered (see last week’s article). There were a few agitated jostles of newspapers, I can tell you.
It wasn’t quite on the scale of Peterborough’s hatchet job on my accumulator the previous week, but Barnet did their best to bust my coupon as they earned a 2-2 draw at Southend, getting their first away point of the season and trebling their away goals tally in the process.
However, as Everton and Montpellier were let-downs as well, the hurt didn’t last as long, so I looked ahead to this week’s World Cup qualifiers to try to squeeze some money out of the success of several European countries. And no, I’m not Greek – why do you ask? (Joke! It’s a joke!)
Should you want to make the international break more interesting and earn yourself a pre-weekend bonus, then why not use the free £20 bet you receive for signing up to a bwin account to give yourself a chance of winning a wallet-tingling £211.63 with this latest effort.
Russia to beat Portugal @ 7/4
The first of our games comes in a 4pm kick-off from Moscow as Fabio Capello’s Russia and Paulo Bento’s Portugal face off in a top-of-the-table clash.
Both sides accumulated maximum points from their opening two games and are already five points clear of the chasing pack in Group F.
The Russians are notoriously strong at home thanks to a terrific work ethic and the harsh conditions, something that could play an even bigger part in this game given the Portuguese are more accustomed to the polar opposite climate. Russia won three of their five home ties in Euro 2012 qualifying, scoring ten and conceding just twice.
With star forward Cristiano Ronaldo a doubt following his shoulder injury suffered in El Clasico last Sunday, A Selecção will probably struggle to score goals and at 7/4, Russia look great value to continue their perfect start to qualifying.
Belgium to beat Serbia @ 9/5
I said it in a previous international acca article – everyone these days has a Belgian. Anybody who’s anybody has one in their squad.
The Belgium side could well be mistaken for a Premier League select XI, but that is just proof of how far the nation, previously known only for Poirot and Tintin, has come in football terms.
Marc Wilmots will be looking to solve the mystery of how to win in Serbia (a little detective gag there, in case you missed it), who sit alongside Belgium on four points from two games so far in Group A, having held Scotland at Hampden Park and hammered Wales on home soil.
But this Serbia side is not as strong as it once was, despite the Wales result, whereas Belgium boast talents such as Vincent Kompany (injury permitting), Eden Hazard, Thomas Vermaelen, Jan Vertonghen, Moussa Dembele, Kevin Mirallas, Marouane Fellaini and more.
It will be a tricky game for Wilmots and his boys to overcome, but such is the talent in their side – and the pressure on their own ‘Golden Generation’ to make it to World Cup 2014 – that 9/5 on an away win looks too good to pass up.
Germany to beat Republic of Ireland @ 9/25
Sorry Ireland, but this is the Germans we’re talking about. Vorsprung Durch Technik, as they say (or four-sprung duck technique, as the old joke goes).
Yes, when they get the smell of a World Cup in their nostrils, the Germans do not mess about and Joachim Loew’s men have already raced to the top of Group C with wins over the Faroe Islands and Austria.
Germany won all ten of their qualifying games for Euro 2012, while Ireland, although relatively successful at home in that campaign, only kept one clean sheet in five at the Aviva Stadium.
Giovanni Trapattoni’s team cannot be underestimated, but such is the devastating consistency of this German outfit, I cannot look past another win for Lukas Podolski, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Mesut Ozil and company.
England to beat San Marino @ 1/100
I’ll be honest, this one is optional, depending on how confident you are that the Three Lions can beat the team ranked 207th in the world out of 209 countries.
From a £20 bet, it adds just over £2 to the prize money, but this way it makes that first goal just that little bit more intense and the game a bit more of a spectacle. By all means leave this one alone, because with England you never know, but for those who like to live life on the edge, follow me.
This is the latest kick-off of the four games, so the tension is cranked up, especially when it’s 0-0 after 88 minutes and the beads of sweat are trickling down the back of your neck.
But think of it this way: when Wayne Rooney or Jermain Defoe crash in a late winner, you’ll feel like you really earned that extra two quid, and that’s what this game’s all about.
That’ll do us for this week, but don’t go far – there’s a Tuesday accumulator coming up in the next few days. What do you mean you don’t believe me? Hahahaha, well done, so I lied did I? #bunchofrascals
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