National League – Hawks could be easy prey for Harrogate


NON-LEAGUE expert Paul Maddison (@LouthBigDog) shares his favourite fancies from Saturday's action.

Harrogate v Havant & Waterlooville | Saturday 8th September 2018, 15:00

When I looked at this weekend's fixtures in the National League, there wasn't too much that jumped out to me. The teams I do fancy look a bit on the short side, but this is the game that stood out like a sore thumb.

Harrogate have made a great start to the season, sitting top of the league on 19 points having won five and drawing four of their opening nine games. After kicking-off with three draws they quickly found their feet and have won five of their last six.

Town certainly aren't struggling in front of goal having found the net 19 times already, four more than the next best.

It's Harrogate's home form that particularly impresses me, though. They have won an incredible 19 of their last 23 at home, scoring two or more in all but one of those games – the one game they didn't score twice in they had a player sent off just before half0time.

Amazingly, 16 of those 19 victories have been by two or more goals. Pretty impressive stuff.

Hawks look easy prey

I got my first decent look at Havant & Waterlooville in their victory against Aldershot on Wednesday night and wasn't particularly impressed. They were second best to a poor-looking Aldershot side for large parts and I think the result flattered them.

Considering their home form is much better than their away form, they could be in for a long afternoon in Yorkshire. Away from home the Hawks have lost three and won once so far this season.

Havant's sole success came at Braintree, who look like they won't be hanging around in the National League for long. It still took a 94th minute equaliser and a 96th minute winner to get that over the line.

Probably the most worrying thing for the Hampshire club is the amount of goals they are conceding on the road –  14 in their opening four games. Seven of those were against the teams occupying the bottom two places, the other seven coming against the 15th and 16th-placed teams. That doesn't bode well as they prepare for their toughest test of the season so far on their travels.

The betting angles

There's a few angles I really like in this game. You can get 19/20 on a home win with several firms and that looks a cracking a price (it was evens when I started writing this, so probably won't be around long).

My biggest bet of the season so far is on Harrogate to score Over 1.5 Goals at 7/8 with Unibet.

Finally, at slightly big odds I'm backing Harrogate -1.5 on the Asian Handicap at 11/4 with 888. That means the bet will pay out if Harrogate win by two or more goals.

Best Bets

Harrogate v Havant & Waterlooville – Harrogate to win (19/20 Unibet)

Harrogate v Havant & Waterlooville – Harrogate to score Over 1.5 Goals (7/8 Unibet)

Harrogate v Havant & Waterlooville – Harrogate -1.5 Asian Handicap (11/4 888)

About Author

I first got the taste for betting when I was quite young, every year I would pick a horse for the Grand National and my Dad would go to the bookies and put my £1 each way bet on. As soon as I could get away with it I was in the bookies every Saturday afternoon searching the football coupons and putting on stupidly big accas. Now enjoy betting mainly singles or small multiples, usually sticking to the English leagues. I don't favour any particular market, but rarely watch a game without having small first scorer bet for a bit of fun. I've got 3 boys which take up most of my time, but luckily they enjoy going to watch football and days at the races. I'm a life long Grimsby Town fan, one of a few that has seen some ups as well as all the downs.

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