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4 things we learned from Atleti’s win

1) Atletico are no pushovers

After the departures of Diego Costa, Filipe Luis, Thibaut Courtois and David Villa, many expected Atletico to still be up there in the La Liga race but eventually finish behind Barcelona and Real Madrid. However, based on their recent league win and Spanish Super Cup triumph over Los Blancos, it looks like they’re more than just one season wonders.

With some impressive signings, it’s even possible that this Atletico team could achieve more than Diego Simeone’s side of 2013/2014, staking a claim as one of Europe’s best sides.

2) Squad depth

When Diego Costa got injured in the Champions League final back in May, Koke aside, Atletico really lacked a player who could create something out of nothing. Squad depth however, isn’t an issue anymore at the Vicente Calderon.

At the Bernabeu, Atletico were able to call on Antoine Griezmann and Arda Turan off the bench – both of whom who made decisive impacts in Atletico’s first ever back-to-back win at Real Madrid. Simeone was notably happy:

“What I am most pleased about today is that the players who came off the bench did what we were expecting of them and did it well.”

And with the likes of Alessio Cerci, Jesus Gamez and Cristian Ansaldi still to make their debuts, Atletico are well packed.

atletico_real

3) Moya taking his chance

In what was seen as a backup signing, Miguel Moya has certainly taken advantage of Jan Oblak’s injury problems. The Slovenian – the most expensive goalkeeper signed in La Liga for €16 million – was seen as the eventual successor for Thibaut Courtois but it could be that Moya, the former Getafe man, is Simeone’s new man between the sticks.

With some great performances, a quick acclimatization, and a confident voice, Moya has settled in well at Atletico and it would be harsh for him to have to relinquish the starting spot if Oblak were to be fit and ready to go.

The Spaniard made impressive saves against Real Madrid and as it stands, has conceded 3 goals in 5 games.

4) Atleti could actually be Real Madrid’s kryptonite

Before the game, Raul Garcia made a claim that Atletico Madrid knew how to beat Real Madrid:

“Atletico know how to play against Real Madrid and we can beat them. We have shown that. The only time in recent history where we took the wrong approach was in the Copa del Rey last season.”

It was a risky thing to say – perhaps with the intention of phasing Los Blancos – but Garcia was proved right as Atletico made it yet another win over their rivals. It just shows what a great job Simeone has done with this team that they are finally a thorn in their neighbour’s side.

The funny thing is, Real Madrid fans held a banner in 2011 saying “Derby rival wanted,” and since then, Atletico have won 3 out of the last 4 games at the Bernabeu. Lesson? Be careful what you wish for.

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LvG already under big pressure

Former Liverpool player and manager, Kenny Dalglish said it perfectly:

“Louis van Gaal may have had difficult starts at Bayern Munich and Barcelona – but nothing like this. I don’t know how much pressure the Dutchman was actually under at those clubs but this, at Manchester United, might just be the most extreme pressure he has ever experienced.”

While some United fans would want to disagree with that, Dalglish hasn’t said anything wrong. After the disaster year that followed David Moyes’ managerial stint, Old Trafford was crying for a saviour. After rejecting Jose Mourinho a year earlier, who better than the Chelsea manager’s old mentor, Louis van Gaal to rectify all that’s gone wrong?

While the Dutchman drew plenty of plaudits and did well to steer Holland to a third place finish in the 2014 World Cup – when many were expecting them to finish behind Chile and Spain in the group – it has also massively increased the expectations on the former Bayern manager.

Louis van Gaal

It’s fair to say many expected him to hit the ground running – with no Champions League football either, van Gaal could solely focus on the league; something which has helped Roma, Juventus and most recently last season, Liverpool, with the decrease in fixtures.

However, it’s been anything but. United lost their opener at home against Swansea City while drawing with Sunderland away after taking the lead. To add insult to injury, League One side, MK Dons thrashed United 4-0 in the Capital One Cup.

It was always going to take time but not even the most pessimistic United fan would have expected a winless first three games of the season. To make matters more worrying is the fact that United have spent quite a lot this season – £59.7 million for Angel di Maria, £30 million for Luke Shaw and £28.5 million on Ander Herrera. And they might even spend more with the rumours of Arturo Vidal.

With these transfers, it’s interesting to note that Moyes never got his targets or spent this much in the summer preceding his first season, having an inferior squad to van Gaal. Sir Alex Ferguson also once mentioned £34 million being too much for one player – Eden Hazard in particular.

Of course, di Maria hasn’t played yet and the 3-5-2 formation could take time, but do United really have time on their side? With just two games in, they’re already 5 points behind the leaders and face a tricky away tie to Burnley. Confidence is already pretty low and another setback could have big consequences – van Gaal is already under big pressure.

Moyes never lost a game by more than 3 goals and van Gaal has already done that in his third game. He has the mentality, experience and personality to get United back on track but if things keep going this way, at what point do we stop defending the Dutchman?

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Who Will Claim The Super Bowl Ring This Year – Bet and Then Find Out!

The NFL preseason is almost over, giving us plenty of excitement. Sure, preseason is fun because you get to see who’s really taken summer training to heart and who hasn’t, but let’s be honest: there’s nothing like the official season. This year, the official season starts up right on September 4th, a few days after Labor Day. So, how do you get ready for an excellent season of football? You need to start by looking at all of the teams that are playing. But what does that really mean?

Well, you have to step back and look at how football teams are organized during the official season. You have two conferences and multiple divisions within the NFL league. The two conferences are the AFC (American Football Conference) and the NFC (National Football Conference). When you start looking at statistics, being able to narrow things down by conference and later by division will help you make better bets. Spreading your bets around is a good strategy when you get started, to increase your chances of winning. The worst thing that you can do is to get to a sportsbook and just “throw it all” on one team and hope for the best. Sharp football betting fans know better than that.

Super Bowl Ring

You also have different divisions within each conference. This keeps things pretty organized. You can lay out your bets per division, or you can focus on multiple divisions. It’s really up to you. You have four divisions within each conference: North, South, East, and West.

Sounds good, right? This can add quite a bit of spice to your normal NFL season, but you still need to pick a quality sportsbook. Going online for your sportsbook needs is good because you get to skip all of those office pools that usually don’t pay out very well. There are always a few hurt feelings when the results come in. Working with a professional sportsbook cuts all of the hurt feelings out of the picture entirely. We recommend allpro sportsbook, because they go above and beyond to make sure all players are comfortable. Support is only a few clicks away, and they strive to resolve any problems quickly. The interface is slick enough to meet your needs, but you can’t see any winnings if you don’t dive in and place your bets.

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MMA and UFC Betting Puts Cash In Your Pocket

When MMA fights first came out, they didn’t hold a lot of appeal with the mainstream audience. They were considered too bloody, and they were dismissed as being a fad that would go away quickly. Dana White, one of the major players in the UFC world, worked to rebrand the sport as being about performance rather than just bloodsport. This was something that turned the sport into a truly global phenomenon. But you probably know all of that. You want to figure out whether out not betting on UFC events will put cash in your pocket.

The answer is yes, but there are conditions to it. You see, you can’t just bet from the gut. If you’re just getting into UFC matches, you need to study the contenders closely. Going with whoever the media likes means that you could blow money on the wrong events, leading to a lot of problems later down the road.

First and foremost, look at the odds in the marketplace. Sportsbooks are designed to make money, but they can also help you make money. You just need to calculate the odds as best you can, and then look at which picks can make you money. If you’re looking at each player, then you should be able to make smarter matches.

mma betting

Playing at an online sportsbook gives you benefits. It’s not just about bonus hunting, either. You get the benefit of being able to watch some of the games live as they happen. If you don’t have an expanded cable subscription that lets you view the games, some sportsbooks will let you view a stream. They have a license for the ability to do this, so you’re not in danger of violating any copyright laws checking out the game.

There will be bets you make that end up not coming to pass. If a contender gets injured or otherwise can’t finish the round, you want to be assured that the bet is either going to be cancelled out, or made in your favor. Every sportsbook has a set policy on how they’re going to handle this, so make sure that you look it up on their site. There are just too many sportsbooks for us to tell you how this is going to be. Even if we could, you’ll find the information changes very quickly.

The key here is to study as much historical data as possible. As the UFC fights come and go, we’ll continue to highlight the strengths and weaknesses of every player, as well as giving as much background as possible. We hope you’ll stay tuned!

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Tennis, Golf, Football – It’s a Big Betting Season Right Now!

Watching sports is okay, but being able to bet on them is even better. We’re big sports fans who make different wagers depending on what’s happening in the sports world. Tennis? No problem. Golf? Too easy. Football? Always.

Why not join us? There’s a big betting field out there, and there’s always room to make a little more money. You don’t have to feel like you’re racing against every single person.

If you’re going to jump into the game, there are a few things that you might want to do.

Betting Season

First and foremost, you need to find a sportsbook that you can trust. We’ve written on the subject before, but this advice bears repeating. Playing at the wrong sportsbook is frankly going to make you pretty pissed off! We’re tired of seeing people waste money at the wrong ‘book, and it’s time to do your homework. Look at reviews to find a sportsbook that you’ll love coming back to over and over.

Here’s a hint: look at the bonuses too. No, we’re not true bonus hounds by any stretch of the imagination. What we are is simple: punters that love betting as much as watching all of the games. Getting a little incentive to make wagers isn’t a bad thing. If it’s wrong, well…we really don’t want to be right!

So, at this point, you have some options. You can always look at getting the biggest upfront bonus, or you can look at getting something that’s going to keep recurring over time. In our opinion, you want to look at promotions that will continue to accrue even if you aren’t a high roller. That would make the most sense, honestly.

Finally, look at the sports that you’re really interested in. Every sportsbook will do promotions based on something interesting, but if it’s not what you want bet on, what’s the point?

Some sportsbooks will do live feeds of the games, in case you want to watch from your computer. There are also mobile versions of sportsbooks that you can take the betting fun with you. We like those because we can chill at a friend’s house, watch the big games, and then make our wagers throughout the day.

It’s really that straightforward. Why not look into it today? You just never know how much you’re going to win until you play!

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College Football Betting

If you are such a football nut that the urban warfare of the NFL is just not enough for you and you also like to keep an eye on the players that will grace football’s pro ranks in the years to come, then the NCAA football is right up your alley.

If you are also a sports bettor, betting on college football games can be a hugely lucrative sideline from your usual NFL sports betting. However, if you thought that picking NFL winners was getting harder every season, trying to spot winners in the huge and complex college football system is a much tougher ball game altogether.

But don’t despair! By checking out the odds at allpro you will be able to spot the favorites and ensure that you avert the minefield that is college football and hopefully get great returns from your NCAA football sports betting.

College Football

As a football fan, you are familiar with the way things are in the NFL – 32 teams divided into two 16 team conferences, after the culmination of the regular season the top eight teams from each conference then going through to contest the playoffs, and the two winning teams then going on to compete in the sporting showpiece that is the Super Bowl.

If you are relatively new to collegiate football, be warned – the game is the same, but that’s all. There are more than two hundred college football teams competing each season, divided into dozens of leagues and conferences.

The winners of all of these conferences are decided by 35 ‘Bowl’ championship games. Sound complicated? It is! And to cap it all, the winner is declared by a voting panel within the National Collegiate Athletic Association, not on the football field!

Why wager on college football?

Another reason why sports bettors enjoy wagering on college football games is because many matches are screened live on TV. During the college football season, you can usually find live games on Saturdays and Sundays, and occasionally on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays as well as. A sports bettor armed with the unbeatable college football picks can therefore kick back with a beer and enjoy the game, knowing their money is safely on the winning side! [Read more...]

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How to Use Advanced Baseball Statistics to Your Advantage

Sabermetrics is something that’s been around for a long time, but it’s making a serious comeback. Seasoned punters have long used statistics to their advantage, but the field is still a bit too murky for beginners to fully grasp. It can be difficult to really gather up enough resources to make a decent bet based on the statistics offered to you. But what if you could clear the field and get something to work out to your advantage? There’s no need to fear statistics, after all, if you can learn how to interpret them profitably.

In order to understand why they’re profitable, you have to understand what they represent. If you’re a baseball fan, you’ll hear a few radio announcers and sports commenters talk about these statistics during the game.

Tracking performance of star players helps you figure out where you want to place your wagers. A strong team with strong statistics is going to give you a better return on your investment than a team with weak numbers. Yet you can’t just take numbers at face value. That wouldn’t be true analysis. You have to look at the context that wraps around those numbers. There’s a few different statistics that you can use to your advantage. Let’s run through those real quick.

1. WAR (Wins Above Replacement)

This statistic gets quoted quite a bit on television. It’s wins above replacement, a measurement of a player’s offense and defense abilities, relative to all of the actual players that could replace him. That’s an important distinction because not everyone can replace the player in question. You want to look at players with a decent WAR score as players that are going to bring value everywhere they go. So if a player gets traded, then you already know that they’ve got something interesting to offer the team. You may wish to adjust your wagers accordingly.

Baseball Statistics

2. BABIP (Batting Average on Balls in Play)

Batting average on balls in play is another measurement that gets quoted often. This measures how many of a batter’s “active” balls go towards hits, or which balls in play go against a pitcher for hits. It excludes homeruns. It’s used primarily to track the performance of pitchers.

3. WHIP (Walks Per Hits Pitched)

This is one of the statistics that is easily understood. You want to know how many walks a player actually creates based on the hits pitched. Pretty straightforward, compared to some of the other more esoteric statistics.

Baseball is filled with statistics. You could spend an entire day looking at teams based on statistics alone. In fact, there are many professional analysts that do exactly this. It may take you a while to really get this system down pat, but it’s definitely worth adding to your toolbelt if you’re really serious about baseball betting.

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Who’ll win the Premier League in 2015?

Once all the furore around the World Cup has settled down – we’ll have a few weeks off then it will be time for the new seasons again all across Europe’s big leagues. And amongst these leagues there are none more interesting or competitive than England’s Premier League. But who will win it next season?

Premier League

Well it would seem to be between five teams. As things stand, José Mourinho’s Chelsea are marginal favourites to win – just ahead of last year’s champions Man City. But there’s not much to choose between the two at somewhere around 2/1. Then there’s a bit of a gap to Man United who may be rejuvenated under new boss Louis van Gaal who is currently doing a great job steering Holland through the World Cup. United are 11/2.

Louis van Gaal

They’re followed in the betting by last year’s runners-up Liverpool at around 8-1 and Arsenal at around 9/1. This year, Liverpool will have a Champions League campaign which may prove enervating – something they didn’t have to deal with last year. But even more importantly, of course, the signs are that they may be losing the serial biter and star player Luis Suarez to Barcelona for what will, presumably, be an enormous fee.

Of the five – Arsenal seem to be the value bet. The Gunners led the league for a long time at the start of last season before running out of steam and finishing fourth. But they were absolutely beset by injury problems and had looked very strong until that occurred. What’s more – they enjoyed a long and arduous FA Cup run as well as the Champions League. And whilst Gunners fans were delighted to see them lift the FA Cup in May – they’d much prefer Premier League success, so that is surely where Arsene Wenger’s focus will be this season. It would be no great surprise to see Arsenal exit both cup competitions early on as they concentrate on league success; time will tell.

Mourinho

Otherwise a lot will depend on what Mourinho, van Gaal, Liverpool’s Brendan Rodgers and Man City’s Manuel Pellegrini do in the transfer market before the start of the season. Or maybe the new man at the helm at Spurs, Mauricio Pochettino will make a few moves of his own a spring a surprise? If his record at Southampton is anything to go by – he could well so that. Spurs are currently a whopping 50-1 with 32Red. And it may be that you can qualify for a free bet here. If you click here to visit 32Red online casino, you’ll soon see that you qualify for up to £160 free if you haven’t previously registered with the site. So if you’re lucky enough and retain the free cash or maybe even win a bit more – you could end up with a free bet on next year’s Premier League winner – but who will that be exactly!?

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What California Chrome’s Loss at Belmont Really Says for Horse Racing?

You’ve had time to deal with the results already, so we’ll be blunt: C. Chrome lost. A fourth place finish isn’t the end of the world, but it’s still a long way from being a Triple Crown winner. There were some punters that worried about C. Chrome from the beginning. Yes, the horse took the Derby. Yes, the horse took the Preakness. But concerns about speed and endurance have always been hanging out in the background, all the way back during the Road to the Derby series.

Again, the horse is still impressive. People are moaning about the loss of the Crown as if it means that this wonderful horse is bound for a slaughterhouse in some foreign land. That’s just not the case at all. California Chrome is a great horse, with a lot more fight in him than meets the eye.

Let’s not forget all of the stud fees that the owners are going to be able to collect. Winning the Derby and the Preakness definitely gets you noticed. Tonalist won the Belmont, but that win is opening up some controversial doors. It also says a lot about horse racing.

California Chrome

Tradition has a difficult time surviving in the modern world, especially when the modern era is so digital. We have much more data to work with than we used to, and this requires the racing world to change. Should Tonalist been allowed to compete in the last leg of the Crown, when the horse didn’t race in the Derby or the Preakness? Some say yes, but others say that this change is disastrous. They say it’s not fair that C. Chrome had to race in both prior races while Tonalist was allowed to compete “fresh”.

We think that some sort of agreement needs to be reached. If the fresh horses are allowed to compete, some will feel that it doesn’t accurately display the skills of the other horses. On the other hand, some say that a true Triple Crown champion should be able to defeat even the fresh horses to take the title properly.

This is an argument that won’t be concluded anytime soon. Some people are just sore that California Chrome didn’t take the title, since it’s been 38 years since a horse has been able to take the title.

There were some punters rejoicing on that loss, of course: if you bet against California Chrome taking the title, then you might have made some money off side bets. You could also make money off C. Chrome’s 4th place win. It’s all about how you structure your bets :)

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The History of the NBA

For anyone that’s unfamiliar with the National Basketball Association, they are the biggest and best professional basketball league in the world. Although the NBA is based in North America and features 29 American and 1 Canadian side, it is widely recognised that this organisation has the premier players and teams from around the globe. Having been founded in New York City on June 6, 1946, the NBA originally went by the name Basketball Association of America, and it was not until the August of 1949 that National Basketball Association was adopted. The Toronto Huskies played hosts to the New York Knickerbockers in the first ever official NBA game, which took place at Maple Leaf Gardens in Canada.

From 1979, the NBA had a real surge in popularity and one of the more exciting moves by the organisation was to add the three pointer to the rule book which made for more dramatic matches. Also that year, Larry Bird joined the Boston Celtics, while Magic Johnson made his debut for the Los Angeles Lakers. These two giants of the game eventually went toe to toe at the 1984 NBA Finals and so began a rivalry which generated huge fan interest around the world. Both players lead their respective sides to numerous NBA titles and were the most famous names in the game until the arrival of Michael Jordan. Jordan became a global brand all of his own during the 90s and would help the Chicago Bulls secure three NBA Titles in succession from 1991 to 1993. He repeated the same feat in 96, 97 and 1998 before retiring the following year. Jordan did make a comeback with the Washington Wizards but injuries meant his game time was limited.

NBA

The 2014 NBA Championship title race is currently in its latter stages, with the Miami Heat and San Antonio Spurs battling it out for the prestigious crown. Miami Heat are currently available at odds of 5/7 with bookmaker Betfair, while the Spurs can be backed at odds of 6/5. There is also betting available on the Series Score at Betfair which is sure to appeal to a number of basketball fans. The most popular series score at the time of writing is Miami to win by a 4-2 margin and that outcome can be supported at the 12/5 mark. For any San Antonio fans out there, Gregg Popovich’s side are available at generous looking odds of 11/2 to win the title by that same 4-2 score line.

The future of the NBA definitely looks bright and the fact that the NBA players are the world’s best paid sportsmen tells its own story. Betting on this sport and the NBA in particular remains big business. Bookmaker Betfair are one of the very best sportsbooks that provide betting opportunities for basketball punters and there are prices available on the NBA championship as well as individual matches throughout the calendar year.