World Football: Saints to make their mark in Switzerland

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WORLD football fanatic James O'Rourke (@JamesOR1) continues-off his 2019 travails with two hand-picked best bets from across the continent on Saturday.

Norrkoping v Djurgarden | Saturday 2nd November 2019, 12:00

We’re at the final hurdle of the Swedish Allsvenskan season and everything boils down to Saturday afternoon as the division participate in their respective final games. Not only are the relegation positions not completely decided, but the league title is still to be determined as well. However, the race for top spot is firmly in the hands of Djurgarden, who only need a point from their final game.

That may appear easier said than done as they travel away from home to face Norrkoping, who sit fifth in the table and have lost only one league game since July. Not only that, but they’re unbeaten at home since June, too, winning their last six on home soil and all with clean sheets.

This therefore could potentially open the door for Malmo and Hammarby, who are relying on Norrkoping winning and then hoping they can the job done themselves, as well as the other than dropping points.

As mentioned, you really want to be in the shoes of Djurgarden this weekend however. They’ve been top of the table for a little while now and have developed a great habit of just getting the job done. Five of their last eight wins have been by a one-goal margin, and six of their 10 away league wins this season have also been by one-goal. They’re one of only two teams to concede below 20 goals in the Swedish top flight, proving that their game management is quite something.

The thing is, Norrkoping don’t need to win this game given they have nothing on the line. That being said, they’re in top form and don’t know how to lose at the moment. They have an impressive W10-D2-L2 home record that further enhances their claims. Could they spring a shock? They’ve certainly got a chance, and I am slightly wary of backing Djurgarden to win at odds-on, especially as a draw would be enough.

I don’t normally do this, but I’m prepared to back the Draw at 13/5 (BetVictor) in this one. Djurgarden haven’t necessarily been spectacular and nerves will undoubtedly play a possible part in this one, especially knowing Malmo and Hammarby should win their games, and this is the biggest point that Djurgarden need probably in recent times considering they last won this league back in 2005.

Norrkoping have conceded only eight home goals and Djurgarden seven away this season. I’m quite content to go for the draw in this.

St Gallen v Sion | Saturday 2nd November 2019, 18:00

One team who have caught the eye in this usually two-team Swiss Super League is St Gallen.

With Young Boys and Basel occupying the top-two, which they have done for the last five seasons without fail, St Gallen have made their claim to try and break up the elite group. They’re making a decent fist of it thanks to a 7-2-3 record that has given them 23 points. The top three have started to break away slightly and wins in matches like this are key for St Gallen.

Sion however find themselves fourth, so they travel firmly believing that they can win this. The concern for them is that they have hit a bad run of form at a bad moment. They’re winless in their last five league matches, losing four of them and conceding at least two in four of them, too. Defensively they must sharpen up when travelling to a St Gallen side that has scored three or more in three of their past four at home.

This game is sixth against eighth from last season, and considering this is only a ten-team division then it just shows you how well both of these have done to showcase some improvement. Only six-point separates fourth to eighth in this league as things stand however, proving that literally a few wins can see you climb half the table.

Therefore, third against fourth could be a slight exaggeration, and it shows you how well Sion started the season to see them still high in the league despite going winless in five. This is a game where goals do look to be on the agenda – 9/12 of St Gallen’s matches contained Over 2.5 Goals, with their home matches averaging 3.30 goals. Sion has seen 8/12 beat the Over 2.5 Goals line, including their last three away.

Sion have only won on two of their last 14 visits to St Gallen inside 90-minutes, and St Gallen really do look a dangerous team this season. I fancy them to win, especially with Sion conceding a few at the moment. St Gallen to win and Over 2.5 Goals will be the play at 13/8 (SkyBet).

Best Bets

Norrkoping v Djurgarden – Draw (13/5 BetVictor)

St Gallen v Sion – St Gallen win and Over 2.5 Goals (13/8 SkyBet)

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