League Two Table
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|Last Year's Winnings!|
Beat the Bookies: Week 1
By: Rob Sedgwick
ANOTHER season is now upon us, and it's time to see whether Beat the Bookies can be profitable for the fourth consecutive season since it was instigated.
The first thing to note about League Two this season is how open it is. There appear to be no "obvious" teams who will take the division by storm. At the other end of the table it's difficult to get an accurate picture of what will happen due to at least one side starting on a negative points total, and with another two also threatened to be docked points by the authorities. Our advice is to leave both the promotion and relegation markets until a few games have elapsed and a clearer picture has emerged - unless you have good information about a specific club.
The club we of course all know best is Grimsby. Town at this stage do not look like a relegation side, and hopefully they will challenge at the top. However with the first few fixtures being quite difficult, our advice is again to time any promotion or championship bet on Grimsby until a few games have passed and our odds have lengthened to something more attractive. Right now Town are 28/1 to win the league and 11/2 to get promoted.
That leaves us with the opening day's fixtures. There are eight games involving teams who were both in League Two last season. The new teams are largely unknown quantities at this stage of the season, and it's a safer bet to concentrate on these eight games.
Rochdale had a superb second half to 2007-2008, just falling at the final hurdle of the play-off final. Grimsby are one defeat from a club record sequence of losses having ended last season in appaling form. Rochdale have retained most of their players from last season and made a handful of new signings to boot. Dale have also won the last four fixtures between the clubs. Rochdale were available at 19/10 earlier this week when we backed them, but have been backed in to 17/10 now, which is still good value
Another team who have been backed in to win away is Lincoln, who face Rotherham. They were around 2/1 at the start of the week but are now available at 17/10.City have acquired quite a few players over the summer but may take time to settle.
Shrewsbury are one of the more fancied teams this season, and face Macclesfield at home in their opening game. However the Shrews fell away alarmingly at the end of last season, and have made a lot of changes during the summer. Keith Alexander has taken over at Macclesfield and no doubt he will make his teams hard to beat. The bookies have probably over-priced a home win and we fancy the 4/1 available with BetDirect for an away win.
Bury ended last season very strongly and Brentford had a terrible run-in. The Shakers should see off the challenge of the Londoners at Gigg Lane, and 7/5 for a home win looks good value.
The next best bets are Morecambe to spring a surprise at Wycombe (4/1 with BetDirect) and Chester to win at Dagenham (5/2) in the battle of the anticipated strugglers.
This season we will be trying out three different betting strategies:
- Fixed Odds - as per last year
- Spread Betting on the Mini Performance Index with IG Index (25 points for a win, 10 for a draw, 10 for a goal)
- The Monkey (betting on Town to win each game 3-1, i.e. the complete absence of any betting strategy).
Recommended Fixed Odds Bets
- 1. Rochdale to beat Grimsby (17/10, bet365))
- 2. Macclesfield to beat Shrewsbury (4/1, BetDirect))
Recommended Spread Bet
- Sell Brentford mini-performance at Bury (20, www.igsport.com)
The Monkey's Bet
- Grimsby to win 3-1 (18/1, bet365)
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