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Monday night we’ll be focusing on some promotion play-offs happening in the UK and a Serie A match from Italy. In the first legs of their Championship Play-Off matches Bournemouth will welcome Brentford to the Vitality Stadium and Barnsley will be entertaining Swansea at the Oakwell.
Up in Scotland, Edinburgh City take on Dumbarton in the first leg of the League One Play-Off final and finally in Italy, Verona must take on Bologna – a team they’ve not beaten at home since way back in 1990. Let’s find some value picks from these four intriguing encounters.
Bournemouth come into this match after losing all three of their most recent Championship matches. Brentford are actually unbeaten over their last 12 in the league winning four of their last five and, most impressively of all, the Bees have kept six clean sheets over their last eight in the league.
The Cherries had been really struggling for goals as the season finished, indeed they scored a grand total of zero over their last three games. However, we need to look at this in a bit of a wider context. Over their 23 home matches this season they scored 40 goals and only failed to score in three of their home league games this term. Brentford share the same stat for away games, they’ve also scored 40 goals on their travels.
The first legs of these ties can be cagey affairs with sides more eager to not make a mistake than to go all out for the win. However, the stats indicate a great chance of both teams getting at least one here.
Edinburgh City beat Elgin City 3-2 over two legs in their previous play-off game to make it to the final here. Dumbarton scraped 1-0 past Stranraer and are playing for their League One survival. Edinburgh though have the better form and are on the cusp of being promoted to the highest league in Scottish football in their history.
Edinburgh have won two, drawn one and lost two of their last five on home turf, Dumbarton are in awful shape on the road, winning just one of their last 11 on their travels. Of their last five, they’ve won one, drawn one and lost three. The home outfit have superior goal stats too, they’ve scored eight over their last five at home, Dumbarton have scored two. The home side have the momentum and goals here to win.
Both teams are in pretty bad shape, but thankfully for both there’s little on the line here other than some bruised confidence that can be mended. Verona have won one of their last 11 Serie A matches, losing eight and drawing two. At home things aren’t much better where they’ve lost four and drawn two of their last six, scoring three goals and conceding nine.
Bologna have won one of their last eight in the league, drawing three and losing four. Away from home things aren’t any better where they’ve won one of their last five, drawing one and losing three, scoring five, conceding 12.
If you could bet on both teams to lose here you’d be tempted, they’re that bad of late. Of Verona’s last seven home games only one saw Over 2.5 goals occurring, while in Bologna’s last seven on their travels it only landed in three. Unders is mighty value for two teams finding it hard to hit the proverbial barn door.
Barnsley come into this match in slightly better form than their opponents, they’ve won two of their last five, drawing one and losing two. Swansea have won one, drawn two and lost two. At home things are better for The Tykes where they’ve won two, drawn two and lost one of their last five. Swansea, on their league outings, have won two, drawn one and lost two.
Form-wise there’s little to separate them, but the market has made Barnsley fairly strong favourites. Barnsley scored a healthy 30 over their 23 home Champions games this season, while Swansea chalked up 29 over their 23 away games – that’s an average of 1.30 and 1.26 each.
Barnsley have only missed the target in one of their last nine at home. Swansea’s stats aren’t as good, scoring at least one in six of their last nine on the road, but we’re still getting good value on Both Teams To Score here.
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