Vitesse v Heracles | Saturday 3rd October 2020, 15:30
Vitesse are looking to bounce back from an away defeat to Ajax last weekend. Whilst in the grand scheme of things that wasn’t an unexpected result, the reality was that Ajax played that game with ten men from the 44th minute, with the hosts 1-0 up at that point.
Heracles have demonstrated all different sides to them in the opening three weeks of the season. They did a professional job in beating ADO Den Haag 2-0, were hammered away at Willem II, whilst last time out they earned a more than creditable home draw with PSV.
Vitesse had two wins from two prior to the Ajax setback and they’ll be pretty expectant on returning to winning ways on Saturday afternoon. One reason for that is their impressive head-to-head record in this renewal. Heracles have only won once away in Vitesse in this decade, and only one of the last eight including both home and away, and that was when Vitesse played over a half with ten men.
Focusing more on this season, Vitesse are well away top of Eredivisie in relation to shots on goal. They’re the only team to have recorded at least 60 shots on goal, and that is someone 13 clear on Feyenoord in second. Heracles have 33, so roughly half the amount of attempts on goal compared to Vitesse in the same 270-minute period.
Traditionally, Heracles are a side which tends to struggle quite badly away from home. They play with an artificial surface in their home games, so I’m guessing they struggle to adapt for most fixtures on the road back on grass. September 2019 was their last away win.
Vitesse are pretty good at home too, and they’ve only lost twice here since the start of the 2019/20 campaign versus clubs not in the Ajax and PSV bracket. The key to them is keeping clean sheets as they will almost certainly win if they get one. Two of their three wins this season have been ‘to nil’.
Also, Heracles have scored just three goals across their previous 11 Eredivisie away battles, which further highlights their soft touch when on their travels.
I have made a good case for Vitesse to win to nil at 11/5 (Spread Ex), but that won’t be the official tip. I am chickening out slightly by backing Vitesse to win and over 1 goal on the bet-builder at 20/23 (Bet365). Just shy of even money for that selection is pretty good going.
I certainly don’t like to back against goals in Dutch football, which is probably why I swayed more to this more than Vitesse and a clean sheet. Vitesse look a good call to add to your accumulators this weekend.
Valerenga v Mjondalen | Saturday 3rd October 2020, 19:30
It is 5th against 15th in the Norwegian Eliteserien on Saturday night when Valerenga welcome strugglers Mjondalen to Oslo. The form guide may suggest that Valerenga have been a little up-and-down for a while now. Only in three two-game periods since they resumed playing in mid-June have that put together back-to-back victories.
They would lose 2-0 away to runaway leaders Bodo/Glimt last time out, which is no disgrace given their dominance in this league this season. Whilst we can argue that have been inconsistent for a few months now, that is not the case when focusing purely on their home matches. That is because they are unbeaten at home since the resumption and last November was their last home league loss.
As mentioned, Mjondalen are struggling right now and you only need to have a look at their run of results for a while now to see an awful lot of L’s. They’ve suffered five defeats in a row, which came after back-to-back wins over Haugesund and Brann, they were surprising results given they had lost the seven in succession beforehand. Quite simply, they are in a rut, and a pretty big one.
So much so, I think Saturday’s outcome most definitely points towards a home victory, but a price of 4/11 is completely understandable. I have however managed to find an odds-against price which I am happy to put forward as my bet of the weekend, and strongest for some time.
Valerenga HT/FT is amazingly priced at 6/5 (Novibet) and I urge you all to take advantage of this whilst you can. I guess a reason for this is Valerenga have the second-best second half record in the league, but are only ranked 11/16 for first half figures.
Whilst that is the case, Mjondalen are 15/16 in the first half, and Valerenga also possess the joint second-most first half home goals in the division. Mjondalen have conceded an alarming 11 goals in the 15 minute period before half-time, so it just shows they have issues seeing out the half.
Saturday’s home team are dominant in comparison to Mjondalen in the various facts and figures too. They’ve amassed over 100+ shots on goal compared to the strugglers, and roughly three times as many efforts on target.
Mjondalen are ranked bottom in relation to average possession, so their game plan will be pretty evident from an early stage. I just don’t have much faith in their defensive organisational skills to hold out until half time, or indeed to cause a shock over the full 90.
Vitesse v Heracles – Vitesse win and Over 1 Goal (20/23 Bet365)
Valerenga v Mjondalen – Valerenga HT/FT (6/5 Novibet)