IT was a pretty sensational day in the world of sport – punters almost broke the bookies at Cheltenham, Real Madrid and Schalke fought out a seven-goal thriller … and Bristol City walloped Yeovil.
Bristol City were my full-stake Super Single at 10-11 and that brings me almost level for the month.
Real Madrid beat the Top Treble with Porto and ICT winning but I don’t think anyone would have predicted a 4-3 victory for Schalke or such a scintillating performance. Fair play to the Germans for not throwing in the towel after a 2-0 home defeat in the first leg. And for anyone who backed Carlo Ancelotti’s men on the outrights – start worrying now.
Earlier in the day I said there was more chance of Elgin keeping a clean sheet than me picking a winner at Cheltenham. Unfortunately Clyde failed to score in the Highlands but I managed three winners and three seconds at the Festival – and don’t ask me how although Johnb of course helped me along the way with the likes of Douvan and Thomas Crapper.
There are two more CL ties tonight and while Jose Mourinho already has one trophy in the bag after winning the League Cup he’s has his sights set on England and Europe’s biggest prizes.
Chelsea were lucky to draw 1-1 away to PSG last week but the away goal could prove crucial because the Blues will go through with a 0-0 draw although they’ve netted in their last 18 Champions League ties at Stamford Bridge.
Stats say only in one on four teams who draw 1-1 at home in the first leg go on to qualify and while I wouldn’t write off star-studded PSG I’m on Chelsea.
They are 21-20 with McBookie and BetVictor and have never lost at home to a French side in six meetings. PSG are 10-3 with bet365 and Ladbrokes while the draw pays 5-2 at Skybet.
Diego Costa is the obvious first-scorer choice at 4-1 with McBookie and it might be better siding with Edinson Cavani rather than Zlatan Ibrahimovic if you fancy a PSG marksman.
Ibrahimovic has hit seven goals in 34 Champions League knockout games while Cavani has rattled in six in seven CL outings this season. He is 16-5 at Ladbrokes to net.
Bayern Munich are no bigger than 1-7 to qualify after a 0-0 draw away to Shakhtar Donetsk. Pep Guardiola’s tactics were questioned after the game but 15 goals in four domestic outings since then has silenced the critics.
I can’t see past Bayern tonight and will be on them minus one at 1-2 with William Hill – but after events at the Bernabeu on Tuesday anything could happen.
Bolton won’t be in awe of Blackburn’s goalless draw at Anfield having achieved the same result in the FA Cup fourth round. Another trait that these sides share is that while they are capable of shutting out Liverpool, clean sheets don’t feature too prominently in their Championship business.
Both teams have scored in 11 of Bolton’s 13 league games since Christmas and each of Blackburn’s previous four home second-tier encounters, three of which finished 2-1 (twice in their favour, once against). Neil Lennon’s Trotters won the reverse fixture by that scoreline at the Macron Stadium.
There is one game in the English Championship and while Blackburn may have an eye on an FA Cup replay with Liverpool I’m focusing on goals at Ewood Park as they entertain Bolton.
It was a major surprise Rovers shutting out Liverpool at Anfield considering they have kept just one clean sheet in their last 11 Championship encounters. Bolton have stopped opponents netting once in 13 attempts so this derby should provide goals.
It was 2-1 to the Trotters at Ewood earlier in the season and both have scored in four of the last six meetings at Blackburn. There’s more chance of no to both to score than me winning again at Cheltenham – it is day two after all and a bookies’ catch-up.
My Super Single on Sunday was Hibs -2 AH against Berwick and I’m on them to win by at least when they tackle Livingston in the Scottish Championship.
Hibs will have been boosted by Rangers dropping another two points in the chase for second place and have now won their last four games to nil and five overall.
In contrast Livingston are rooted to the foot of the table after losing three on the bounce without scoring and four in total. It was 4-0 to Hibs in their last meeting at Almondvale and Alan Stubbs’s men have improved dramatically since then with eight wins in matches.
Hibs are no bigger than 3-10 to win with the likes of Ladbrokes and BetVictor so again we have to look to the handicaps and they are 5-6 with Paddy Power and bet365 to win minus one. To be honest I’d happily tip minus two at 23-10 with Paddy Power but there’s no need to be greedy.
5pts Super Single
(5-6, Paddy Power, bet365)
3pts Goals Tip
Blackburn v Bolton btts
Super Single March record
10 bets (4 winners, 5 losers, 1 void)
March goals record
10 bets (5 winners, 5 losers)
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