Karvina v Viktoria Plzen | Sunday 24th November 2019, 16:00
The top-flight in Czech football does have something of a one-horse race feeling to it considering that going into this weekend Slavia Prague enjoy an 11-point lead at the top of the table. Plzen are the closest challengers, as they normally are, and need to keep on picking up regular wins themselves in the hope of forcing Slavia into some mistakes. This weekend, Plzen travel to Karvina firmly expecting to win.
Why is that? Well, Karvina find themselves second from bottom in the league, with only Opava deemed a worse side after 16 games of the season. Just two solitary victories to their name suggests it is primed to be a long old season, especially as none of them came at home, meaning they’re without a home victory since May.
A big issue for Karvina is a sheer lack of goals that they score. They only have 11 this season, and just two at home. They are one of those bizarre sides that seem better away from at home, yet they’re a struggling team overall.
Whilst the hosts don’t score many at home, they’ve don’t exactly ship many either. They’ve only conceding an average of one goal per home game, which included holding Slavia Prague to a 0-0 draw, making them one of only two teams to take points off Slavia.
Plzen, as mentioned, need to keep on winning to give them even a remote chance of turning the lead at the top around. Even at this stage of the season, every point counts. Whilst they’ve lost two of their last five in the league, which came to league leaders Slavia and third in the table Mlada Boleslav, so they really should relish this easier assignment on Sunday.
One slight concern is that of their five away games this season to teams currently in the bottom half, Plzen have drawn three of them, but Teplice, Bohemians and Zlin are teams that can and do flirt with the European qualification spots normally.
The last seven head-to-head renewals has seen Plzen emerge victories each and every time. They’ve scored 16 compared to Karvina’s six in that period. The odds have Plzen very, very short odds to get the job done this weekend, but I do envisage this being closer than many expect considering Karvina’s record at home whereby they are seemingly purely defensive and can be tough to break down.
I’m backing Plzen and Under 4 Goals on the bet-builder at a price of 20/21 (Bet365) and hopefully Plzen don’t score early enough. Defensively you’d like to think they won’t have so much to think about, whilst coming back from the international break they may need a little bit of time to get back into their rhythm.
Karvina v Viktoria Plzen – Viktoria Plzen to win and Under 4 Goals (20/21 Bet365)