League One preview: Ricoh can reinvigorate Saddlers
Betting advice from Michael Holden of Best of the Bets
Michael Holden is one of the UK's leading football betting tipsters. A former casino croupier with a deep-rooted curiosity in statistics and probabilities, his passion for betting on the beautiful game stretches back more than two decades. Since graduating as a journalist from the University of Central Lancashire in 2005, he has delivered consistent profits for his legion of followers on Sportinglife.com and produced many groundbreaking feature articles on the application of social science in a football betting context. He is now the editor of Bestofthebets.com having orchestrated the design, build and launch of the new sports betting website for Gaming Media Group during the summer of 2011.
Friday 07 December 2012
What started out as such a promising season for Walsall has steadily turned sour but an exciting local derby at an inspiring new venue might be just the ticket to get them firing again. Take some of the 10/3 about the Saddlers beating Coventry at the Ricoh Arena on Saturday.
Dean Smith's men are now winless in 14, a statistic that ought to surprise anyone who witnessed their free-spirited football in the opening two months of the campaign, but standards have improved of late - particularly on the road - enough to suggest that a moment of maximum reward could be on the way.
If Walsall can match their efforts in recent draws at in-form Bury, sharp-shooting Crawley and high-flying Tranmere, then there's adequate reason to believe that Coventry will be a little more forthcoming when it comes to handing over the points.
The Sky Blues have improved under new boss Mark Robins but most of their progress has been on the road and they remain unreliable at the Ricoh with only two wins in ten attempts, seven of which have been under the tuition of the former Rotherham and Barnsley boss, only one of them with a clean sheet.
As if a plush 32,000-seater venue fit for the Premier League doesn't present Coventry with enough problems from a psychological persepctive at this level, reports of a potential winding-up order made the news this week as stadium operators ACL issued a £1.1m rent demand.
The club is nearly a year in arrears after expressing its wish to renegotiate terms of the agreement and while the story might be little more than a storm in a teacup at this stage, it can only serve to undermine the work Robins is doing to create an ambience of long-term stability.
The Sky Blues do at least have a money-spinning FA Cup third round tie with Tottenham at White Hart Lane to look forward to, while they also find themselves two steps away from Wembley in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy after beating Sheffield United on penalties in midweek, but those wider positives could be viewed as negatives in terms of appetite for this game.
It's a much bigger occasion for Walsall and they are bound to be backed by a sizeable following as they make the 27-mile trip down the M6. With their involvement in the knockout competitions curtailed, this could be a pivotal moment in their season - the catalyst that pushes them into rediscovering the excellent standards from August and September.
1pt Walsall to beat Coventry at 10/3 (Bet365)
Saddlers can be rediscover early standards, inspired by their first ever visit to the Ricoh.
For more betting advice, visit Best of the Bets by clicking here.
Latest in Sport
Paul Scholes: Manchester United vs Liverpool - I don't understand why Brendan Rodgers was not more attacking against Basel
Jesus Christ plays for Chelsea - that's what one in five children thinks
Transfer Talk: Nemanja Vidic to return to Manchester United; Hazard to leave Chelsea; Sunderland want Radamel Falcao
Frank Warren column: Don't bet on Amir Khan landing pay day against Floyd Mayweather
Manchester United transfer news: Kevin Strootman move edges closer
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Sony hack: Angelina Jolie branded 'seriously out of her mind' in further embarrassing leaked email saga
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food