European Best Bets: Might of Milan too much for struggling Spal

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CARDS specialist Chris Goodwin (@CGeorgeGamble) picks out his favourite fancies from the continental action on Wednesday night.

Alaves vs Granada  | Wednesday 1st July 2020, 18:30

Alaves’ home form has been pivotal in their efforts to remain in the league and they’ll be hoping that they can continue that trend here. They’ve only lost four of their sixteen home games this season but three of those have come against teams in the top half of the table.

Whilst there may not be too much to play for at this stage of the season, Alaves will want to secure their place in the top flight for next season; they currently sit five points off of the magic 40-point mark.

Granada have also been extremely strong when playing at home but it’s their form on the road that’s no doubt caused manager Diego Martínez a few headaches. The visitor’s away record has contributed just 33% to their overall points tally and they now make the trip to the basque country, to take on a team who’ve scored in six out of seven games at home to sides in the top half of the table.

Key stats

Alaves:

  • Commit on average 16.2 fouls per game when playing at home (second most).
  • Receive on average 11.1 fouls per game when playing at home (second least).
  • Have seen 2+ cards in 7/7 games at home against teams in the top half.
  • In those games the opposition has seen 2+ cards on 6/7 occasions.
  • When playing at home against teams in the top half, Alaves have scored on 6/7 occasions.
  • In those games they have also conceded in 6/7.
  • See an average of 3.31 yellow cards per game when playing at home (second most).

Granada:

  • Commit an average of 15.4 fouls per game when playing away (third most).
  • Receive an average of 13.3 fouls per game when playing away.
  • Have seen 2+ cards in 7/8 games away to teams in the bottom half.
  • In those games the opposition has seen 2+ cards on 8/8 occasions.
  • When playing away to teams in the bottom half, they have scored in 6/8 games.
  • In those games they have conceded on 4/8 occasions.

Analysis

Asier Garitano’s men have seen at least two cards in every home game this season against teams in the top half. In Granada’s games away the opposition has seen at least two cards on every occasion and so with Alaves having the second worst disciplinary record at home, I expect them to pick up a few bookings here.

To further back it up, referee Eduardo Prieto has overseen two Alaves matches at the Mendizorrotza Stadium this season – they saw three cards on each occasion. He’s also shown Granada’s opponents three cards in every game he’s refereed when they’ve been playing away from home.

My preferred plays are: Alaves Over 2 Cards and Alaves Over 0 First Half Cards (21/20 William Hill) and Alaves Over 1 First Half Card and Alaves Over 0 Second Half Cards at 14/5 (William Hill).

SPAL vs Milan | Wednesday 1st July 2020, 20:45 | Premier Sports

SPAL, the side from Ferrara, look down and out in terms of their battle with relegation and they welcome a Milan side who are still in the hunt for a European place.

SPAL have won just two games at home all season with their last coming all the way back in October against Parma. Since then they’ve seen two draws and seven defeats at the Stadio Comunale. If that wasn’t bad enough they’ve also conceded in every home game bar one.

Milan are currently the only side in Serie A that have never lost when play away to SPAL and they will hope that’s a trend that remains intact once the final whistle blows. The Rossoneri have won their last eight league games against the hosts and it’s hard to make a case for any other outcome.

Key stats

SPAL:

  • Commit on average 14.7 fouls per game when playing at home.
  • Receive on average 13.7 fouls per game when playing at home.
  • Have seen 2+ cards in 7/7 games at home against teams in the top half.
  • In those games the opposition has seen 2+ cards on 4/7 occasions.
  • When playing at home against teams in the top half, the have scored on 5/7 occasions.
  • Have conceded in 12/13 home games this season including in 6/7 against teams in the top half.
  • See an average of 2.77 yellow cards per game when playing at home.

Milan:

  • Commit an average of 14.6 fouls per game when playing away.
  • Receive an average of 11.9 fouls per game when playing away.
  • Have seen 2+ cards in 6/7 games away to teams in the bottom half.
  • In those games the opposition has seen 2+ cards on 5/7 occasions.
  • When playing away to teams in the bottom half, Milan have scored in 6/7 games.
  • In those games they have conceded on 6/7 occasions.

Analysis

Milan have won their last four Serie A away games against teams that have started the day in the bottom three of the table. SPAL have lost nine of their 13 games at home and conceded in 12 of those this season.

Luigi Di Biagio and his hosts are running out of time and currently find themselves eight points adrift from safety. Unfortunately for them, I don’t see things looking any better after the final whistle. No team has scored fewer goals on home soil than SPAL and with Milan still in with a strong shout of qualifying for Europe, I’d expect to see the Rossoneri overcome an aggressive SPAL side.

Over 1 Card and Milan to win is 5/6 (Bet365) whilst  Milan to Score 2+ Goals, Milan 5+ Corners and SPAL 2+ Cards also stands out at 21/10 (Betfair).

Lecce vs Sampdoria  | Wednesday 1st July 2020, 20:45

It’s arguably the biggest game of the season for these two sides. A loss for either team puts their Serie A status in jeopardy; dragging them into an even deeper fight for survival.

Lecce currently sit a point behind visitors Sampdoria and in turn, a point from safety. Fabio Liverani’s men are coming off the back of two heavy home losses to Atalanta and Napoli respectively but will be hopeful of turning it around against a Sampdoria side who’ve lost nine out of 13 away games.

The Blucerchiati have lost every single game since the restart and will be desperate to stop the rot against their relegation rivals, Lecce. Despite losing those three games they have also managed to find the net each time, their main problem is shipping goals in at the other end.

Key stats

Lecce:

  • Commit on average 12.9 fouls per game when playing at home.
  • Receive on average 14.3 fouls per game when playing at home.
  • Have seen 2+ cards in 5/6 games at home against teams in the bottom half.
  • In those games the opposition has seen 2+ cards on 5/6 occasions.
  • When playing at home against teams in the bottom half, the have scored on 5/6 occasions.
  • In those games they have conceded in 5/6.
  • See an average of 2.64 yellow cards per game when playing at home.

Sampdoria:

  • Commit an average of 16.2 fouls per game when playing away (third most).
  • Receive an average of 12.2 fouls per game when playing away.
  • Have seen 2+ cards in 4/5 games away to teams in the bottom half.
  • In those games the opposition has seen 2+ cards on 3/5 occasions.
  • When playing away to teams in the bottom half, they have scored in 5/5 games.
  • In those games they have conceded on 3/5 occasions.

Analysis

This is a huge game down near the foot of the table. A win for Lecce sees them leapfrog thee visitors and out of the relegation zone. However, a win for Sampdoria and they put four points between themselves and the bottom three.

Because of the importance of this match and the referee in charge, I think this game could see goals and cards in abundance. In the last six league meetings between these two, both sides have scored. There has also been four red cards.

Lecce have conceded 11 goals in their last two home games and need tighten up if they are to escape the drop, meanwhile the visitors have conceded 10 in their last four. With both sides enduring a period of having leaky defences; expect there to be a hatful of big chances for both sides.

I'll be looking at Sampdoria 2+ Cards, Over 2.5 Goals and Sampdoria to score at 21/20 (Bet365), plus Lecce Over 0 First-Half Cards, Sampdoria to score Over 1 Goal and Sampdoria Over 1 Card at 21/10 (Bet365).

Best Bets

Alaves vs Granada – Alaves Over 2 Cards and Alaves Over 0 First Half Cards (21/20 William Hill)

Alaves vs Granada – Alaves Over 1 First Half Card and Alaves Over 0 Second Half Cards (14/5 William Hill)

SPAL vs Milan – SPAL Over 1 Card and Milan to win (5/6 Bet365)

SPAL vs Milan – Milan to Score 2+ Goals, Milan 5+ Corners and SPAL 2+ Cards (21/10 Betfair)

Lecce vs Sampdoria – Sampdoria 2+ Cards, Over 2.5 Goals and Sampdoria to score (21/20 Bet365)

Lecce vs Sampdoria – Lecce Over 0 First-Half Cards, Sampdoria to score Over 1 Goal and Sampdoria Over 1 Card (21/10 Bet365)

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