Feb 11, 2012

Deportivo Quito - Manta

Ecuador Serie A, Primera Etapa

Very tough period for Deportivo Quito, as after their mid-week match in Mexico, they have to play again in the league today, and after that travel to Uruguay for another Copa Libertadores game. And all of this before two matches against LDU and Emelec, that could prove crucial for their domestic campaign. So, a match between two long travels is certainly a nuisance, and since a lot of players have been either slightly injured in Mexico, either are feeling tired, coach Ischia has decided to give credit to the continental tournament, that is why today, an alternative squad is expected. Not sure yet who will play against Manta, but we can be pretty sure there won't be many regulars. Manta might not be one of the better teams in Ecuador, and head to head certainly doesn't favor them, but I think they have what it takes to resist against Deportivo, and if they can't snatch a point, at least to lose by the minimum. GL!

Manta (+1.25 AH) @ 1.79, 3/10
Result: 1-2, WON

Feb 10, 2012

Emelec - Olimpia

Copa Libertadores 2012, Group Stage

Last season, betting on over on the matches between these two teams was highly profitable, and even though the ultra-offensive Carrasco is no longer a coach at Emelec, this bet is still good today, especially with the slightly lower line. Both teams have solid squads, and both have kicked-off their divisions with a win. Emelec made a solid match to take the 3 points from a tough away game, while Olimpia made a spectacular match with the newly-promoted Carapegua. And here is the main point of this bet. Olimpia looked very good offensively, scoring 3 goals and also missing a penalty kick that had to be taken twice, but also showed some problems in defense. And since just a little time passed from that match, and the same system/players are expected to face Emelec, I believe that both teams should score with ease here, especially since it's a must-win match for both of them, being hard to hope for a qualification in a group with Lanus and Flamengo. Bottom line is that both teams have good offensive players, while the defenses still have a lot to improve, so this will be a huge surprise if we won't see at least 3 goals. GL!

over 2.25 goals @ 1.95, 5/10
Result: 1-0, LOST

Feb 9, 2012

Nacional Asuncion - Cruz Azul

Copa Libertadores 2012, Group Stage

A nice movement in odds has caught my attention here. From an average opening price of 2.10 to the current average of 2.45 is really something, and it only suits my taste, since I see no reason for this movements. The Mexican teams are tough to beat usually (although Chivas's performance from last night left me with a sour taste), but when playing away from home they are usually beatable. Especially since for tonight, there are some rumours circulating, that coach Meza could give a rest to some of the regulars, in preparation for their league match against Tijuana, as Cruz Azul are fighting hard to win a trophy after almost 15 years. Meanwhile, Nacional have lost their first match of the season, against Libertad, but besides a red card that ended their chances of a come-back, they also saved a couple of their key players, especially for this Libertadores match. It should be a tight affair, but I just can't see the Paraguayans losing this game, so the new DNB line looks very good. GL!

Nacional DNB @ 1.75, 5/10
Result: 1-2, LOST

Feb 8, 2012

Chivas Guadalajara - Deportivo Quito

Copa Libertadores 2012, Group Stage

Taking a trip to Mexico is always a tireing experience, and the matches don't get any easier. Mexican teams are solid teams, and at home they are very tough to beat, especially for the 'lower' South American teams (Peru, Ecuador, etc). For example, in last year's group stage, there were 3 Mexican teams, that means 9 home matches, from which 7 were won by the hosts, against teams like Argentinos Juniors, Fluminense or Internacional. Anyway, back to the present. Chivas have decided to use their main squad for this competition (at least for the time being), so that obviously puts them in contention for a qualification to the next stage. Deportivo Quito are a solid team for Ecuadorian standards, but all the Ecuadorian teams are naturally poor travelers. The match will be played on the Omnilife Stadium, which has artificial turf, so again, another big disadvantage for the Ecuadorians, who aren't used to this type of surface. So, this match goes down as a home win for me, but small stakes, because even though a strong Chivas team is expected, their motivation is always a big doubt in Libertadores. GL!

Chivas (-0.75 AH) @ 1.91, 4/10
Result: 1-1, LOST

Feb 6, 2012

Sportivo Luqueno - Cerro Porteno

Paraguay Primera Division, Apertura

Crazy, simply crazy odds movement for this match! This to me looks by far the most overish match of the round, but somehow the bookies don't agree with me, so let's hope it's their mistake, not mine. Cerro Porteno are natural title contenders, and are gunning hard to get their hands on a trophy again this season. Pretty much same squad as last year, which should bring consistency and game relations already set. Luqueno are trying to put behind them the disaster that was last season, and to avoid relegation, and for this to happen, they have to make every point count. However, without any serious reinforcements, they seem to be one of the main relegation contenders. Cerro Porteno will probably start this match with do Santos, Fabbro, Edgar Benitez and Nanni, their main offensive force, so goals are sure to come. And the over looks even more encouraging if we look at their past results from 2011, having 17 goals score in 4 games, only one of them ending with an underish 1-0 for Cerro. Max stake for this bet, as I really see a lot of value in the recent odds movement. GL!

over 2.5 goals @ 2.08, 4/10
Result: 2-0, LOST

Barcelona - Deportivo Cuenca

Ecuador Serie A, Primera Etapa

One of the teams that lead one of the most aggressive transfer campaigns in the league, alongside LDU Quito, Barcelona will launch their title challenge tonight, against Deportivo Cuenca. Barcelona spent a lot of money, and transferred some good players, trying to get their way back to winning ways, and this year they are seriously being seen as title contenders. Besides their great form with which they ended last season (won 12 of the 22 matches from the Segunda Etapa), today we will see the debuts of defenders Erazo (from El Nacional) and Jairo Campos (previously in LDU, Atletico Mineiro and Deportivo Quito). In midfield we'll see Amaya, freshly crowned Colombian champion with Junior, while in attack will play Narciso Mina (awesome 2011 for him, with 28 goals scored for Independiente Jose Teran) and Luguercio, who came from Racing Club of Argentina. Cuenca has instead opted to go with pretty much the same team as last season, along a few new signings, but none of them can be considered a key transfer. And since last year Cuenca were rather unstable, I don't expect many things from them this year either. Barcelona's squad looks very good, and they should kick-off their campaign with a win. GL!

Barcelona (-0.75 AH) @ 1.91, 3/10
Result: 3-1, WON

Feb 5, 2012

Olmedo - Emelec

Ecuador Serie A, Primera Etapa

Emelec, last year's finalists, are set as underdogs for this clash with Olmedo. Interesting situation, and very few reasons for this move... It's true that sometimes Olmedo are a tough nut to crack, especially when playing on their home turf, but seriously, the odds couldn't have been more wrong. Emelec kept the majority of their players from last year, trying to further build on an already solid team, so I hope we can expect some consistency from them. Only 2 new signings will debut today: the forwards Mondaini and Marlon de Jesus, coming from Chivas and Maccabi Haifa, so for sure they are expected to provide a boost for the team. Olmedo has changed a big part of their team, now having to deal with a mixture of young players and some experienced ones, but I doubt that if they have the winning formula it will work right from the start. Higher stakes for this one, as I see value, actually expecting a DNB line, or perhaps even Emelec to be slight favorites. GL!

Emelec (+0.25 AH) @ 1.83, 4/10
Result: 0-2, WON