OUR corners man Russ Butterworth (@cornerkicktips) kicks-off his 2016/17 campaign with some League 1 value on Saturday.
Southend v Gillingham | Saturday 15:00
Over half the 36 Football League games this weekend feature clubs with a new manager/head coach and while this may have a varying impact on the Win-Draw-Win markets, corner wise, a new boss and a new style of play can result in previous stats proving to be simply misleading.
Thankfully there are still a number of games to be considered and the tie between Southend and Gillingham stands out – both managers have been in place for over 12 months and the stats suggest we should expect a decent number of corners.
Southend had a poor end to the season, failing to win any of their last seven games after beating Sheffield Utd 3-1 at home at the end of April.
However, more importantly for this bet, their home corner counts were encouraging over the last couple of months averaging 5.75 corners for and 6.6 corners against over their final eight outings at Roots Hall.
While averages can be deceiving, 6/8 of these fixtures saw Southend hit 5+ corners and likewise 6/8 saw them concede 5+ corners.
With 12 wins in their first 16 home games, Gillingham were challenging for automatic promotion until their season started to fall apart in February, losing five of their seven remaining home games and finishing five points outside of the play-offs.
The Kent club did show some resilience on the road over the last couple of months, losing just one of their last six away games and also displayed very similar corner stats to Southend over their final eight away games, averaging 5.63 corners for and 6.63 corners against.
In 5/8 matches, the Gills managed 5+ corners and also conceded 5+ in five of their final eight on the road.
There is a slight concern that when the two teams met in March, the home team managed just one corner to Gillingham’s nine in a 1-1 draw. Yet this was an unusually low number of corners for the hosts as they averaged 8.25 in their following four fixtures in front of their home supporters.
Six of Southend’s final eight Roots Hall encounters produced over 10 corners as did 5/8 of Gillingham’s away trips.
The price of 1.72 for Over 10 Corners is a bit tight for my liking and with both teams averaging 12.25 corners overall in their last eight home and away games respectively, I’m happy to take the 1.975 (Bet365) for Over 11 Asian corners – we’ll see our stake returned should exactly 11 corners be taken.
Southend v Gillingham – Over 11 total Asian corners (1.975 with Bet365)