Nov 14, 2012

Saudi Arabia - Argentina

International Friendly

Some rest today, for the national teams, as they take on some friendly matches, probably with the objective of finishing the year with high spirits. So without anything at stake, all teams should play relaxed without any pressure. Argentina will test some players, but we still have a solid basis in the team: up-front, we'll see Aguero and Messi, so that should be enough to scare any opponents (especially since Messi started to perform with the national team). And they shouldn't be isolated there either, as on the wings we'll see Di Maria and Salvio. The defensive line might look a bit weak, but since they're playing against Saudi Arabia (who lost 0-5 against Spain, and also lost against Gabon, Libya and Irak), I wouldn't worry too much. Frank Rijkaard is their coach, so that's a plus, but it really doesn't matter who the coach is... they simply lack enough quality to be competitive on the field. Argentina looks in good shape, and will field a good team, so they shouldn't have any difficulties in putting a few goals past Saudi Arabia. GL!

Argentina (-2 AH) @ 1.89, 2/10
Result: 0-0, LOST

Nov 12, 2012

Barcelona - LDU Quito

Ecuador Serie A, Segunda Etapa

Odds seem to be over the top here. After all, this is a derby match, where everything could happen, regardless of the teams' position or form. Both Barcelona and Quito are gunning to win this Second Stage, and either win the league title (Barcelona), or play the league final (LDU Quito). The hosts are in good form, but they might suffer from tiredness, as they have been playing quite a lot of matches lately, trying to get back to date in the league after their Copa Sudamericana performance. This would be their 3rd match in seven days, and during midweek, against Loja, they did suffer towards the end of the match. So I expect pretty much the same thing today. Even more, they will also have to do without some important players: defender Erazo (13/0) is suspended, while defender Campos (12/0), midfielder Oyola (8/0) and forward Mina (7/5) are injured. To them, there might be 1-2 more players who could be rested, but nothing is certain at this point. LDU Quito isn't in the best form of their life, but I'm expecting some extra motivation in this derby. They have pretty much the full squad available, and can finally use both forwards: Nahuelpan and Bieler. Another plus for them should be the fact that despite a poor year, they have never lost against Barcelona, recording 3 draws (actually, Barcelona didn't win against LDU since 2009), so I expect this trend to continue, at some nice odds. GL!

LDU Quito (+0.5 AH) @ 2.14, 3/10
Result: 1-0, LOST