EUROPEAN football fanatic Mark O'Haire (@MarkOHaire) heads to Holland on Sunday for his latest best bet on the continent.
Sparta Rotterdam v Vitesse Arnhem | Sunday 24th November 2019, 15:45
Sparta Rotterdam bounced back from Eredivisie relegation at the first attempt and De Kasteelheren have been keen to rid their yo-yo status by securing survival in the Dutch top-flight this term. Henk Fraser’s charges have certainly made a positive start to 2019/20, and although results have regressed, the six-time champions have adapted well.
Sparta have a squad packed with excellent young talents such as Halil Dervisoglu, Deroy Duarte and Abdou Harroui, but also possess experienced Eredivisie veterans such as striker Lars Veldwijk. They also managed to sign highly-rated PSV Eindhoven midfielder Dante Rigo on a season-long loan deal in the summer to give Fraser plenty of quality options.
The Rotterdam outfit have picked up only a point from their last four fixtures but produced a decent display at Heerenveen before the international break to suggest a return to form isn’t too far away. De Kasteelheren were again made to pay for their defensive errors whilst profligate finishing from club captain Veldwijk also contributed to the 2-1 reverse.
Nevertheless, Sparta should be confident of troubling Vitesse Arnhem on Sunday. The hosts have scored in all bar two tussles since promotion, are generating the fifth-highest Expected Goals (xG) tally from open play in the Eredivisie this term and are racking up almost 10 shots from inside the opposition penalty area on average per-game.
However, Fraser’s troops are nowhere near as adept at restricting opposition outfits. Sparta have shipped at least two goals in eight of their 13 fixtures and the majority of performance data metrics all show the Rotterdam club falling short in their defensive process. With that in mind, goals should be on the agenda when attack-minded Vitesse turn up.
Leonid Slutsky’s visitors have lost three successive matches to lose their grip on third-place with the Arnhem outfit also paying for their less than impressive backline. Like their hosts, the Gelderland group are seeing catalogues of chances created and given away at both ends of the field, leading to a gluttony of high-scoring showdowns.
Goals to flow in Rotterdam
With the two teams combining to score in 22 of their collective 26 Eredivisie encounters, whilst recording only five shutouts, I’m keen to support goals with Over 2 Goals and Both Teams To Score available to back at 4/5 (Bet365). The duo have delivered 18/26 (69%) BTTS winners with 21 (81%) featuring Over 2.5 Goals and 11 (42%) banking for Over 3.5 backers.
The pair have seen 3.43 goals per-game on average with xG averages coming in at a very healthy 3.24. Meanwhile, the Eredivisie has proven to be Europe’s top scoring major league this term with a 3.38 goals per-game average – 68% of those contests produced Over 2.5 Goals profit and 59% of fixtures copped for Both Teams To Score hunters.
Sparta Rotterdam v Vitesse Arnhem – Over 2 Goals and Both Teams To Score (4/5 Bet365)