Friday, 19 November 2010

Losing Well

I must post up lower division tips more often. A Crewe Alexandra v Rotherham United tip gets more comments than the Netherlands v Spain World Cup Final.

A word on the reasoning behind the Crewe pick, and incidentally I quite often back at this level, even Conference matches, but don't comment on them as I didn't think the interest was there. Scott Ferguson of the excellent Sport is for Betting blog calls it:

an odd pick. I'm a Crewe fan - we've just broken a four-game losing streak by beating Gillingham who are terrible. Our 11 match unbeaten streak included seven draws. Rotherham are five pts above us on the table and have the best goalscorer in the league, Adam Le Fondre. Crewe clean sheets are about as common as England World Cup wins and the Millers have conceded just 6 goals on their travels this year.
I nearly stopped reading at "I'm a Crewe fan", since all credibility was gone at that point...joking aside - interesting that Rotherham United are five points ahead in the table, since my ratings have Crewe in sixth place and Rotherham down in 17th. The ratings have no respect for league positions, nor for goal difference for that matter. They simply reward a team that plays above itself, and punishes a team that plays below itself. A four game losing run in itself means nothing. It's who those four losses were against, and where, that affects the ratings. A quick check shows that two of those recent losses were one goal losses against 'high-flyers' Shrewsbury Town and Port Vale, neither of which did much damage to the rating. Rotherham, on the other hand, have under-performed in each of the last seven matches, and their last two away league wins came courtesy of a late penalty and a 92' winner. The ratings have Crewe superior by 1.24 goals, and at 2.42 appear to be good value. However the ratings are just a starting point - certainly if you are putting serious money on these games, and someone like Scott who 'knows' a team like Crewe is better able than myself to confirm whether the ratings are valid. In this case the answer is no
Can't see any value in it at all myself but hope you're right!
Rest assured, I am not as stupid as I look (which was a great relief to my Mother) and if Crewe lose 0-3, there will still be food on the table.

There are a couple of 'strong' draws in League Two - Barnet v Northampton Town and Stockport County v Torquay United. Strong draws in the lower English leagues currently hit at 33%.

Update: A commenter (Blez - check his blog out here - it looks quite good, despite the author's name!) mentioned that "Crewe's goal scoring prowess is pretty much unrivaled across UK football at the moment. Dario Gradi's men are the ONLY side to have only failed to score 1 time so far this season out of the 92 sides."

One small correction is that "across UK football" is a stretch as Crusaders, Stranraer, and Albion Rovers have so far scored in EVERY league game this season, and last time I checked, they were all UK teams, but anyway, another interesting example perhaps of how we look for stats that we want to find. So yes, Crewe may fail to keep many clean sheets as Scott says, but you don't need a clean sheet to win. You do need to SCORE to win though, so perhaps the play here to keep every stat happy is Over 2.5 goals at 1.77? I'm on.

Blez can't be his real name, can it?

1 comment:

blez said...

Morning Cassini!

Firstly, apologies to all the Welshmen, Irishmen and Scotsmen out there for my ignorant comment!

By UK I obviouslyy meant English. I have to confess I don't follow the other UK leagues.

I just don't have the time.

As for the name... my surname is "Blezard". A very unusual name here in the UK.

Good luck today everyone!