|Last Week's Profit/Loss
Another pretty disappointing week from our team, with all but one of us going for a Sunderland win against Tottenham. The only one who didn't, Dave, won money by instead predicting both teams to score in the first half at 4/1. I also won a bit of money from my other bet, picking Hertha Berlin to beat bottom of the German Premiership table Eintracht Braunschweig at odds of 6/5.
Special mention to Nick Holden, who bet on Athletic Bilbao to beat Seville, in a game that's not actually happening until this weekend. Nick, when browsing Oddschecker, forgot to check the date of the La Liga fixture, with the Copa Del Rey taking up the Spanish football calender last weekend. He will still be deducted the £2.50 he bet, as you have to come down hard on these sorts of transgressions, or else society will collapse. Onto this week's betting:
At this stage you probably shouldn't be listening to me. I can't remember what my last winner is but I'm merely remaining top of this steaming pile by everyone else being as ineffective.
Ahead of this weekend's game against West Ham, I can't say I'm confident in the slightest. And as you'll know when that happens I still can't bring myself to bet against us, so I'm just going to go for over 2.5 goals.
Elsewhere I'm going for a little double on home wins for Hull City and Norwich City.
- Sunderland Vs West Ham, Over 2.5 Total Goals - Evens - £5 Stake
- Hull City & Norwich City both to win - 6/1 - £5 Stake
We should win this weekend. We really should. Allardyce is struggling without Andy Carroll and so was Kevin Nolan. As it is, the Scouser will be suspended this weekend, while the Gateshead Zlatan (well, he does have a pony tail) is likely to be out injured. Step up one of, if not both, Modibo Maiga and Carlton Cole. Both are pretty dire, neither has a good goalscoring record, which of course makes them obvious choices to score past Sunderland.
Away from the hell on Wearside, Leverkusen and Hannover should win their home games in the Bundesliga. Similarly, I fancy Parma to win their home game with Cagliari in Serie A.
- Carlton Cole and Modibo Maiga to score at any time - 7/1 - £1 stake
- Leverkusen, Hannover & Parma to win - 4/1 - £2 stake
Let's face it, if we don't win this weekend we are positively done for. Lose at Upton Park and we might as well just save everybody the time and give up. Just stop playing football for a few months until our first league game of next season at home to Doncaster. In fact it'll probably be for the best if we do that. We've all become so disillusioned that we could do with the rest, and hopefully we'll come back refreshed and able to support this endearingly useless football club again.
Mercilessly however, I think they'll pick up a win on Saturday and raise our hopes for a couple of week before the inevitable 1-0 home defeat to Norwich where the restless fans will finally snap, invade the pitch, kidnap Craig Gardner and tie him to the emergency stop pole on a Metro heading towards 'Airport'. Championship football will follow a few months later, but it won't be so bad. At least we'll finally get to see Connor Wickham playing at the level befitting his ability, as he knocks a hat-trick past us for Sheffield Wednesday, having moved permanently there in the summer for £2.5 million.
Elsewhere I'm going to go for Roma to go and beat Milan on Monday night in Italy.
- Sunderland to beat West Ham - 16/5 - £3 stake
- Roma to beat AC Milan - 23/10 - £10 stake
It's pretty clear that we need to win this weekend, luckily West Ham are a side every bit as poor as us so I think there's a good chance of us grabbing that crucial first away win of the season. I think the importance of the occasion will get to both sides initially, but when we overcome our nervousness we should be able to score at least one in order to seal the victory.
As Luke so kindly pointed out, I messed up and picked a game in La Liga from this upcoming weekend last time round instead of one from last weekend. So I'm going to stick to my guns this time round, and say Athletico Bilbao will beat Sevilla away. Happily the odds have improved in the meantime...or at least I think they have, I never was much good at maths.
- Draw half-time/Sunderland win - 15/2 - £2 stake
- Athletico Bilbao to beat Sevilla - 23/10 - £2.50 stake
This is quite simply a HUGE weekend in Sunderland's season and kick starts back-to-back games where Poyet's side should really be striving for maximum points if they are to give themselves a Launchpad in the New Year to dig themselves out of trouble. West Ham are in something of a downward spiral and will be without Wearside favourite Kevin Nolan, who whilst not as influential for the Hammers these days as he was, is still a key driving force in their midfield which you feel they will miss.
No messing about this week, I'm going for a Sunderland win.
I'm going to stick with the Premier League for my second bet and back Swansea to win away at Norwich. The Swans are far too big a price here at 17/10 and will be looking to get back to winning ways following a disappointing draw against Hull last time out.
- Sunderland to beat West Ham - 16/5 - £5 Stake
- Swansea to beat Hull - 17/10 - £5 Stake