* All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while odds in copy are accurate at time of publishing but subject to change.
So, this Thursday, Rangers line up against Alashkert. Yes, I understand that you’ve absolutely no idea who they are, so let me explain to you. They’re newly-formed, have only really come into form over the last while, so people are vaguely aware of them in Europe.
I genuinely pride myself on knowing the smaller clubs in Europe, but even I had to have a quick search. If makes you feel any better, the biggest club in Armenia are Pyunik and you’ve probably never heard of them either.
Thursday 20:00 – Rangers v Alashkert
All I know is they were born the same year I was and the Kardashians could probably get a game for them being Armenian royalty. Was that an SEO grab? No, it was a deadly serious observation.
We all know how this game ends, so let’s not dwell on it too much, yeah? That doesn’t mean it isn’t a betting proposition though – here’s three bets for you to tackle while Rangers dance a merry jig around Ibrox before dispatching this Pro Evolution franchise.
The Shorty: Half-Time – Rangers
I can say a lot of good about Steven Gerrard. I can also say a lot of things about him to trigger Liverpool fans if they find themselves here, but I’ll spare you that much. Right now, Gerrard is one of the few managers in Europe who you know will get a response without question.
If they were sh**e the previous week, and my God, were they ever – then they’ll come out of the blocks firing in this until they’re satisfied that they can approach their gaffer at the break without fear of being maimed. If nothing else is a certainty in life, Rangers winning this tie by half-time certainly is.
Value Play: Rangers (-2)
Look, I’m not saying I’ve got no respect for a squad that contains David Yurchenko, Tiago Cametá, Taron Voskanyan, Mihailo Jovanović, Didier Kadio, Wangu Gome, Rumyan Hovsepyan and Aleksandar Glišić. But, Rangers are going to hit them for five.
In olden times, perhaps Rangers would have been content with playing the tie like so many do in Europe – but with away goals meaning nothing now, it’s so much easier for teams to unleash at home and that’s exactly what they’ll be doing here.
Would you like to be travelling to Armenia next week having to worry about anything other than the fact you’re travelling to Armenia? I certainly don’t think so.
Long Shot: James Tavernier to Score First
The one thing you always find in European games with smaller sides is how slow their feet are, and how they like to lay down a marker early doors – particularly away from home. While Gerrard would never let a unit of his go down too easy, there’s enough ‘professional’ players in this side to know to hit the deck when they felt contact. Tavernier should step up to take the penalty and invariably doesn’t miss.
And for a right back, he doesn’t half pop up a lot with goals in general. Given that the Armenians are going to camped deep inside their own box, the full back’s average position will probably next to the penalty spot anyway.
- Score all your Football betting tips and previews over at Paddy Power News
- ‘Arsenal can no longer visit Rwanda if Aubameyang is sold’, says President
- Jack Grealish spotted in Birmingham with massive “I’m Sorry” balloon