SPORTS BETTING: Leicester a worthy Worthington wager

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The Independent Online
LEICESTER, LYING a handy sixth in the Premiership and winners of the (now) Worthington Cup two seasons ago, look the best value at 14- 1 with William Hill to win the trophy outright before this week's fourth round ties.

The Worthington Cup is as much about psychology as ability nowadays. Manchester United, put up along with, er, Derby as being too big at 12- 1 with Ladbrokes before their easy home tie against Bury in the third round should, on the face of it, remain a must investment at 8-1 with Coral, especially entertaining moderate Nottingham Forest on Wednesday.

However, Alex Ferguson's men have started to dream the European Cup dream again following recent victories over Brondby in the Champions' League and Ferguson seems sure to continue to handicap his side by resting key players for these games. Leicester, though, covet the Uefa Cup place this tournament offers and must fancy their chances on Wednesday at home to Leeds, below them in the League table.

Wimbledon should give out-of-form Bolton a hard time at the Reebok Stadium tomorrow, but Liverpool, the favourites for this tournament, can be no certainties to beat Tottenham following their dismal capitulation at home to Derby on Saturday. Luton should struggle to contain Barnsley the same evening.

Arsenal, after fielding a side which - depleted by a combination of injury and Dennis Bergkamp's fear of flying - was given a pasting by Dynamo Kiev, are no longer certain to qualify from the Champions' League and therefore are simply too big at 10-1 with Ladbrokes. They must be fancied to contain Chelsea on Wednesday while Newcastle should despatch Blackburn.

Manchester United are 5-1 favourites with Coral for the European Cup. Arsenal are 20-1 with William Hill. Roma are the Tote's 11-2 Uefa Cup favourites. Marseilles, tipped here at 20-1, are 12-1 (Coral/ Stanley). They face Monaco in the fourth round. liverpool are 11-1 with the Tote. Lazio are 7-4 favourites with Coral for the Cup Winners' Cup. Chelsea are 9-4.

WORTHINGTON CUP

C H L S T

Liverpool 6-1 4-1 4-1 4-1 9-2

Man Utd 8-1 6-1 7-1 15-2 7-1

Chelsea 7-1 9-1 8-1 8-1 8-1

Newcastle 7-1 8-1 8-1 7-1 9-1

Arsenal 7-1 8-1 10-1 8-1 7-1

Leeds 11-1 10-1 9-1 12-1 9-1

Blackburn 12-1 14-1 14-1 14-1 14-1

Everton 14-1 12-1 12-1 10-1 14-1

Leicester 11-1 14-1 12-1 12-1 10-1

Tottenham 12-1 14-1 14-1 14-1 12-1

Wimbledon 20-1 14-1 14-1 14-1 12-1

Sunderland 20-1 20-1 25-1 25-1 20-1

Bolton 25-1 20-1 16-1 20-1 25-1

Nottm Forest 20-1 20-1 25-1 18-1 28-1

Barnsley 33-1 40-1 40-1 40-1 50-1

Luton 50-1 50-1 50-1 66-1 50-1

C Coral, H William Hill, L Ladbrokes, S Stanley, T Tote

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