With so few domestic games this weekend, our Saturday BTTS Tips column takes in games from across Europe, as well as a couple from League 2. This means we aren’t just looking at the 3PM football coupon.
We go five-games deep and a 20/1 price for this fivefold, looking to arrest this run of misses from our highs of August, where we hit 11/1 and 15/1 winners…
Leg 1 – Hungary vs Serbia @ 4/5
The two highest scorers in Group G of the Euro 2024 qualifiers, take on one another for the second time, at the Puskas Arena Park on Saturday. They have already played in Serbia, where it was a 1-2 win for Marco Rossi’s men.
Neither side has exactly been a BTTS juggernaut throughout recent matches but it is now two-straight for the home side and three-straight for the visitors. So a bit of momentum for this bet coming in but not overwhelmingly so.
These two nations have only met on the football field four times, with goals not exactly flowing, so a relatively tight game should be expected. However, given the injury to key Hungarian defender Will Orban, I do like the visitors to find the back of the net and you have to go back to September of last year, to see the hosts not score at home.
Leg 2 – Slovenia vs Finland @ 11/10
The only odds-against play of the fivefold comes from the Stozice Stadium in Slovenia, where the side currently sitting top entertain third placed Finland.
Group H is one of the tightest groups around, with four sides being separated by just a point. Northern Ireland must be wondering what they did to deserve such a tough draw.
Like the first leg of this accumulator, this is the return game. Over in Helsinki, it was the home side who secured a big three points, coming away with the 2-0 victory.
If you take out the games against San Marino, that is the only contest Slovenia have played so far in this qualification process where BTTS has failed to come in. This bet though has not been good for Finnish fans as they have not hit on Both Teams to Score in five straight. Either winning or losing to nil.
By the laws of averages, that run has to end sometime and this feels like a good spot for it to do so. Both teams score a few (although the record of Markku Kanerva’s side is heavily skewed by the 6-0 win over San Marino). I can see why we’ve got 11/10 but gut feel overrides pure stats for me on this one.
Leg 3 – Ukraine vs North Macedonia @ Evens
These two sides played out a cracking game at the Tose Proeski Arena earlier this year, when the visitors that day stormed all the way back from 2-0 down at Half-Time to take home three big points, thanks to goals from Illia Zabarnyi, Yukhym Konoplya and Viktor Tsyhanikov.
Only England have stopped Serhiy Rebrov’s side from scoring so far in the qualification process. That was in a 2-0 result at Wembley back in March. Since then, the home side here have scored in every game and only kept a clean sheet at home to Malta. This is very encouraging for us.
As for the North Macedonians, they have scored in every game bar the 7-0 trouncing they experienced at Old Trafford in the summer. Another positive sign and whilst the FIFA Rankings suggest that there is a big gulf behind the two sides, they are level-pegging in the group. This should be a more competitive game than many are expecting.
Leg 4 – Milton Keynes Dons vs Barrow @ 4/5
I’ll put it out there. MK Dons have been hurting me in these columns in recent weeks. Whether I put them to win or in a BTTS Acca, every time seemingly in the not-so-distant past, I’ve been sitting there on my sofa watching Soccer Saturday, with tears streaming down my face at the goings-on of Graham Alexander’s side.
Ok, maybe that was a bit extreme but you get the picture. They aren’t exactly a team I’m reading well right now. Yet I’m going back to the well here based in large part due to the data.
The home side are 75% for BTTS (9 of 12) with the visitors 73% (8 of 11). Both of them well above the League 2 average of 61%. So statistically, this feels like a good play but as we saw last week with Greenock Morton vs Queen’s Park, that could easily lead to a 0-0 draw (I’m not bitter…).
Still, at some point you need to trust the data and that in the long-run, it will come good and with both sides 10%+ above the mean in this division, it feels silly not to put them in.
Leg 5 – Swindon Town vs Newport County – 4/7
The shortest priced leg of the five comes from the County Ground, where the home side have been involved in several entertaining encounters already this season. No fewer than 23 goals have been scored in the five league games there and the paying public have certainly been getting their money’s worth.
When it comes to Newport County’s prowess in front of goal, then they’ve certainly been consistent. They drew on a blank on opening day, going down 3-0 to Accrington Stanley but since then, the Exiles have scored at least once in every single game they’ve played and have been very hot on the old over 2.5 as well, could that be foreshadowing another column I’m set to publish today? It may well be.
I can see why this is the shortest price of the five, it feels like one of the safer BTTS bets of the week.