Aston Villa take on Blackburn Rovers in the opening fixture of the Barclays Premier League Asia Trophy tomorrow.
The first of two semi-finals, the winners of the match will go through to face either Chelsea or Kitchee, who play in the second semi-final later in the day.
Villa are evens favourites to make it through to the last two, with Blackburn looking the more likely to contest the third-place play-off.
A draw is available at 9/4 in bwin’s 3Way football betting market, with a win for Rovers priced at 23/10.
More than just a money-spinning exercise, the two games each team are guaranteed to play will form an important part of their preparations for the Premier League season, which starts in less than three weeks.
Both teams have already started building towards match fitness, with Villa’s start to the 2011-12 season distinctly more impressive than Blackburn’s.
The Villans eased to a 3-1 win over Walsall in new boss Alex McLeish’s first game in charge, while Rovers scraped past Accrington Stanley 2-1 before stumbling to a 1-1 draw with Morecambe.
Even allowing for the fact that Villa have lost a number of key players over the summer, including wingers Ashley Young and Stewart Downing, this points towards a win for the Birmingham side.
Recent history is also suggestive of a Villa victory, with the 1982 European Cup winners having won seven out of the two teams’ last ten encounters.
With Villa beating Blackburn 3-1 and 4-1 in their last two meetings, a good bet could be on there being more than 3.5 goals in the game at odds of 11/5.
A successful £25 free bet on this eventuality, available to new customers who sign up for a bwin account, would return £80.
New customers can register here to claim a £25 free bet.