Posts Tagged ‘Klose’

World Cup Roundup


So suggesting a bet on Holland in the final meant the bet of the day running total ended 0.77 units down, which isn’t awful considering two-thirds of the group stage were missed. In better punditry many of the pre-tournament tips came off. Of the more impressive ideas, I suggested Germany to reach the semi-finals @ 12/5, Argentina to get nine points in their group @ 12/5, Uruguay and Mexico to go through in group A @ 13/1 and Uruguay as an each way bet @ 66/1.

I wrote that England could well suffer a second round knock-out, while tipping Holland @ 9/1 almost came off. The goalscorer tips were a touch unlucky too with each way suggestions Klose (33/1) and Suarez (100/1) just missing out on the top four.  Enough gloating (there were plenty of dud tips too after all) and time for a few highlights and lowlights.


Best Game: England vs Germany had controversy, some great football, good goals and it dispelled the hype surrounding so many of England’s stars.

Worst Game: Most of the ones in the first week.

Best Goal: Tshabalala’s in the opening match was great for the moment and Van Bronckhorst in the semi-final was great for the pureness of the strike but I think Villa’s first against Honduras tops both.

Worst Miss: Yakubu vs South Korea. Dear oh dear.

Most Dramatic 5 Minutes: Spain vs Paraguay gave it a good try, with three penalties in the space of a few minutes, but you can’t beat the end of extra-time in the Uruguay vs Ghana match. Goalmouth scramble, handball on the line and red card, missed penalty with a semi-final place up for grabs, undignified celebrations by the man sent off and then a penalty shoot-out shortly after. Wow.

Best Pundit: Clarence Seedorf. There weren’t many to choose from but he was insightful and refreshing. Some good features too.

Hero: Paul the psychic octopus.

Villain: Take your pick from Suarez, the Jabulani ball or the French team going on strike. Oh and James Corden too.

Best XI Of The Tournament: Casillas; Lahm, Puyol, Lugano, Coentrao; Schweinsteiger, Xavi, Sneijder; Mueller, Forlan, Villa.

Worst XI Of The Tournament: Green; Otamendi, Terry, Cannavaro, Evra; Melo, Kaka, Ribery; Anelka, Rooney, Torres.




World Cup Bet Of The Day – Day 30


Running Total: -0.57 units

Spain put in their best performance of the finals so far in beating Germany on Wednesday and it means we’re almost back in profit. I was looking through the betting post I wrote before the finals started and there’s plenty which has come true. I’ll do a full write-up after the final.

Tonight we see the 3rd/4th place playoff between the losing semi-finalists Germany and Uruguay. These games are traditionally very open as neither team cares that much, having fallen so close to the final. Indeed Germany will be looking to finish third for the second straight World Cup having beating Portugal 3-1 in 2006.

Betting on over 2.5 goals should be a given – the last playoff to feature under three goals was way back in 1974 when my Polish brothers beat Brazil 1-0 with a goal from top scorer Grzegorz Lato. Justifiably the odds on this are only around 4/5. Over 3.5 goals is about 15/8.

Uruguay do have a reputation as quite a defensive team but with Diego Forlan and to a lesser extent Luis Suarez still technically in the running to be top-scorer you’d have to think they’ll come out and play. Germany of course are the top scorers in the tournament and themselves have two players after the Golden Boot; Miroslav Klose and the returning Thomas Mueller.

As much as I’d like Suarez to get a couple of goals and win my bet on him to be in the top four goalscorers @18/1 I think it will be a bit of a stretch. On the flip side, Klose needs just two goals to be all time record top goalscorer ahead of Ronaldo and I think Germany will be doing all they can to ensure he gets it. He’s 6/1 with BlueSq to score twice and beat the record (quite tempting) while he’s 6/5 to equal it.

Bet of the day:

Miroslav Klose to score two (or more) goals vs Uruguay @ 6/1

Edit: Klose isn’t starting due to an injured back so let’s go with over 2.5 goals at 4/5.


World Cup Bet Of The Day – Day 27


Running Total: -2.2 units

Bit unlucky last night as Uruguay’s late second goal ruined the handicap bet on Holland to win -1 goal. At least the stake was returned though.

I’m finding it really hard to call tonight’s second semi between Spain and Germany but I think ultimately the Spanish will have a bit too much for Jogi Low’s side. Spain have played lots of quite defensive teams so far while against England and Argentina Germany could do as they pleased. That’s not to say Germany can’t beat Spain but I just think they’ll find it more difficult against a more tactically organised side. I could spend ages previewing this but I’d rather just enjoy the game!

Bet of the day:

Spain to beat Germany @ 13/8


World Cup Bet Of The Day – Day 26


Running Total: -2.2 units

Hurrah! A tip came through. Once again Miroslav Klose deserves thanks as his two goals helped Germany score the four that were needed to win our bet of over 3.5 goals in the Germany v Argentina match. The running total is still in the red but looks a bit healthier.

Today sees the first semi final between Holland and Uruguay with the South Americans a massive 6/1 to win the match in 90 minutes. Even them qualifying is a generous 3/1. The bookies obviously feel that the suspended Suarez and injured Lodeiro will not be adequatley replaced. Captain Lugano is also a doubt.

Holland are no real value at 4/6 but I’ve seen worse odds this World Cup. It’s also very difficult to work out exactly how good the Dutch are, as I wouldn’t say they’ve been at their absolute best in any of the games so far. The handicap bet could be interesting with Holland -1 goal at 11/8. This still isn’t that good and you may be better off trying to forecast the score.

In that regard, I think there’s a good chance of it ending either 1-0 or 2-0 to Holland (5/1 & 13/2) – I think Uruguay will struggle to score without Suarez but their defence has only conceded twice all tournament.

Can Sneijder score again? 13/5 says he can. You can get 13/8 on Van Persie too, despite his relatively lean tournament thus far.

All in all I’m a bit stuck but I think Holland will have too much for Uruguay so will go with the -1 goal handicap bet. At least if they only win by one we don’t lose any money.

Bet of the day:

Holland -1 goal to beat Uruguay @ 11/8


World Cup Bet Of The Day – Day 19


Running Total: -2.8 units

The last tip before I left didn’t win as Spain shockingly lost 1-0 against Switzerland but plenty has happened since then. Lots of my each-way top scorer bets are potentially looking good (Klose, Suarez, Fabiano) while Germany have reached the quarter finals thus putting some money in the bank.

Back to the matter at hand and it’s two tricky games to call today – Paraguay v Japan and Spain v Portugal. I didn’t see much of the first two teams while on holiday so I think I’ll leave that game well alone (though over 2.5 goals @6/4 would be the choice if forced).

The evening game looks like a potential classic, though Spain are heavy favourites at 11/10. It’s tempting to put a small bet on Portugal given they’re as high as 10/3 to win the match, however I think their lack of a proper striker will be their downfall again. David Villa is the man in form for Spain and you could back him to score but I’ll take a risky bet and go for Spain to be winning at half-time and full-time.

Bet of the day:

Spain to beat Portugal at half-time and full-time @ 9/4.


World Cup Bet Of The Day – Day 4


Running Total: +0.2 units

Finally a betting tip came off yesterday with Miroslav Klose getting the second goal in Germany’s 4-0 thrashing of Australia. The man is a born World Cup scorer, how I wish he was playing for the country of his birth… Anyway, the returns mean we’re in profit, albeit by a fifth of a unit. Got to start somewhere huh?

A quick one today. Cameroon face Japan in the mid-afternoon game and should be far too strong for them. Japan have never won a World Cup game on foreign soil and are pretty goal shy at the best of times. Despite throwing a pre-tournament hissy fit, Samuel Eto’o hasn’t pulled out and should get plenty of opportunities to get on the score sheet today. Alex Song meanwhile should be able to negate Japan’s main threat Keisuke Honda in central midfield.

I think Cameroon should be odds on to win this, yet they’re only at around evens. Those odds are good enough for me, you are doubling your money after all.

Bet of the day:

Cameroon to beat Japan @ 11/10


World Cup Bet Of The Day – Day 3


Running total: – 2 units

So for the second day running the suggested bet didn’t quite come off, with England failing to breach the USA in the second half having gone in level at half time. England are notorious slow starters in World Cups (just five opening wins from 13) so the final 1-1 scoreline was not surprising. I had a feeling I should have gone for under 2.5 goals.

Today sees Slovenia v Algeria, Serbia v Ghana and Germany v Australia in the evening match. There are clear favourites in all three games negating any value on a straight victory. I do like Serbia to win at just over evens (6/5 or 11/10 depending who you bet with) but it’s difficult to know how much Ghana will miss Essien’s presence.

Instead I’m going to try a pick a goalscorer in the evening game. I think Germany should beat Australia without too much trouble – I don’t see where the goals are in the Aussie side once you stop Tim Cahill or a past it Harry Kewell.

I imagine Germany will be starting with Miroslav Klose up front. He already has ten goals over two World Cups and will be looking to score in his third tournament. Australia are quite a physical side and his aerial presence will be important to Germany finding a foothold in the game.

With Ballack out injured I suspect Germany’s play will focus more on getting it out wide to the wingers Schweinsteger and Trochowski who can provide crosses for Klose. I reckon it’s risky to be on him as first goalscorer so let’s go with him scoring anytime at just over evens.

Bet of the day:

Miroslav Klose to score anytime vs Australia @ 11/5


Champions League Quarter Final Preview – Barcelona vs Bayern Munich


In the last of our rather late Champions League previews we focus on the tie between Barcelona and Bayern Munich. This is the only game without English interest but it could well be the most explosive quarter final given it features the two top scoring teams this year. Both have 24 from eight games, though half of Bayern’s total came against sorry Sporting Lisbon in the last round. Managers Guardiola and Klinsmann met as players for Barca and Bayern in the Uefa Cup semi finals back in 1995/96 (back when it was worth winning) and the Champions League group stages in 1998/99 – Bayern won both the Uefa semi and both CL group games but I think it may be a different story this time.

Pep and Papin

Pep and Papin


Super Barca

Under new manager Pep Guardiola, Barcelona have been transformed this season. Key signings like Daniel Alves were made in the summer and star strikers Eto’o and Henry decided to stay and decided to get fit respectively. The result has been dominance at home and abroad with a frankly ridiculous 122 goals in all competitions this season. They are averaging a shade under three goals a game in the league while building up a six point lead at the top with a +61 goal difference. +61! In Europe they strolled through the group stages before dispatching Lyon with a 5-2 destruction  in the second leg at the Camp Nou. They have failed to score just twice in the league and have scored six goals in a game four times. Their defence isn’t bad (24 conceded in 29 league games, but 11 in 8 in Europe) so it’s not a case of we’ll just score one more than you, but the focus as always with a Barcelona team is to keep attacking so if anything the strikers have compensated for any defensive frailties.

If he can do that with his lips, think what his feet are capable of...

If he can do that with his lips, think what his feet are capable of...


Not so super Bayern

In contrast to Barcelona’s dominating ways, Bayern have struggled in the Bundesliga currently lying fourth, though just three points behind the leaders Wolfsburg. Those leaders handed them a 5-1 spanking on Saturday so Bayern don’t come into this game in the best of form. Grafite scored a lovely backheel that made their defence look silly. Their attack is pretty good and led by Ribery. Bayern have scored more than two a game domestically with 54 but their defence can be leaky with 36 conceded. Just seven clean sheets have been kept while three or more have been let in five times. Europe has provided relative comfort away from their domestic issues. They went unbeaten in the group stages (which included Lyon) and we’ve mentioned the record win over Sporting. 

How to wrongfoot three players...

How to wrongfoot three players...


Key men

Eto’o and Henry have scored over between them but Barca’s key man these days is Leo Messi. Arguably the best player in the world right now, he has scored 30 times for Barca this year. He will look to attack the Bayern defence from the right wing but has to ability to be effective anywhere in the front third. He’ll be ably supported by Dani Alves who will run up and down the right touchline all night long and Xavi who will look to control things from the centre of midfield.

Bayern meanwhile have their own genius winger in Franck Ribery. Him playing well is the key to Bayern getting anything from this game and the Frenchman will look to continue his good recent form in which he scored both times in France’s pair of 1-0 wins over Lithuania. Up front Podolski and Toni will look to aerially attack the Barca defence and test Victor Valdes, who let’s be honest is a bit rubbish.

King of the Bavarian castle.

King of the Bavarian castle.



I simply can’t see anything other than a Barcelona win tonight. Going forward I think they’ll have too much for Bayern’s defence and it woudn’t surprise me to see them score three or even four goals. I think Bayern have enough going forward to score themselves and Toni and Podolski can certainly cause Marquez and Pique some problems. Ribery may well be better off starting on the right wing so he can attack Sylvinho rather than Daniel Alves but I imagine he will have licence to do as he pleases. If Bayern are still in it for the return leg at the Allianz Arena then it will be a job well done but I fear Barcelona could somewhat humiliate them this evening. I agree with the Football Guy, 4-1.



Champions League Preview – Sporting Lisbon vs Bayern Munich


A few years ago Bayern Munich were one of the most feared teams in Europe but more recently have struggled to convert their dominance in Germany into Champions League success. Since a run of finalists/semi-finalists/winners from 1999-2001, they have yet to go past the quarter finals since. Their decline has been so significant that last season they weren’t even in Europe’s premier competition at all, having finished 4th in the Bundesliga in 2006-07. Since then though they have spent big money on players like Franck Ribery and installed everyone’s favourite diver from the 1990’s Jurgen Klinsmann as manager in an attempt to get back to the glory days.

Yes! We've got a consolation.

Yes! We've got a consolation.

Sporting meanwhile haven’t won the Primeira Liga for eight years but have been runners up for the past three seasons thus comfortably qualifying for the Champions League. Such is the dominance of the big three clubs in Portugal, only two titles have ever been won by someone not named Porto, Benfica or Sporting. They have a talented young squad and players like Miguel Veloso and captain Joao Moutinho are coveted by many big clubs.

I think that's him celebrating

I think that's him celebrating



Following a disastrous fourth place finish in 2007 (their lowest since 6th in 1994-95) Bayern set about rebuilding with a massive spending spree. Amongst the new signings were Miroslav Klose, Luca Toni and record buy Franck Ribery. They duly delivered the title last season but following the instalment of Klinsmann as manager in the summer they have once again struggled this year and currently find themselves in 4th place. Though they are only four points off the pace being set by Hamburg, they made their worst start in 30 years and have lost three of the last four. In contrast though the Champions League group stages saw them comfortably top Group F ahead of Lyon and go unbeaten in their six games. Either way it’s clear Klinsmann has yet to fully put his stamp on Bayern.

Sporting were in the same group as Barcelona and whilst they lost twice to the Catalans they comfortably won their other four games against Shakhtar and Basel. They lie in third place domestically and go into the match with average form despite having won their last two games. I think that having a big game against Benfica at the weekend will actually have helped them as they will have had the chance to adjust to a higher quality of opposition rather than going in cold against Bayern.


Key players

Bayern will look to star player Ribery to create openings for Toni and Klose upfront. Though he only has three assists in the league the league this season he has been fouled 66 times, by the far the most of any Bayern player. This would indicate the opposition try to take him out before he’s in a position to do any damage. This is perhaps only moderately successful as he has scored six times too. The two strikers have quite a formidable partnership, so much so that Lukas Podolski is leaving Bayern for Cologne this summer in order to get some first team football. In addition to both having nine league goals, Polish born Klose already has five Champions League goals to his name too. Sporting will have to be wary of his aerial presence as well as Toni’s physical style and come hither eyes.

He'll get booked for that...

He'll get booked for that...

Sporting will look to try and control central midfield through the aforementioned Veleso and Moutinho and then hope that Liedson can feed on the service provided by former Barcelona player Fabio Rochemback and Russian Marat Izmailov. If he can’t then they will be relying on Spurs flop Helder Postiga. The less said about that the better.


The call                                                                                        

I think this tie could be quite entertaining with a few goals in it. Sporting will look to try and get a lead at home to then defend at the Allianz Arena, and will be confident of scoring past a Bayern defence which has conceded 30 times in just 21 league games. Bayern’s saving grace is that they have several players capable of getting a goal out of nothing, none more so than Ribery.

Though Sporting have conceded only 14 in 19 games domestically, I suspect that is more a reflection on the weakness of the Portuguese league than the strength of their defence. Barcelona put five past them in Portugal and though Bayern are not on the same level they should provide a sterner test than most teams Sporting have faced so far this season. The Germans seem to play with more freedom in Europe as there isn’t the weight of expectation to win every game that comes in the Bundesliga. They only let in four goals in the group stage and beat Lyon away which is something Barcelona couldn’t manage last night. They may well lose 2-1 tonight but I back them to overturn any deficit in the second leg.

I hope they use energy saving lightbulbs...

I hope they use energy saving lightbulbs...




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