Best Bets Across European Football

Gabe Morency

Thursday, January 5, 2017 10:51 PM UTC

Thursday, Jan. 5, 2017 10:51 PM UTC

The top flights in Spain and Italy return to action this coming weekend after a long winter break and there are some intriguing fixtures to look forward to. In La Liga the two-horsed title race.
<p>The top flights in Spain and Italy return to action this coming weekend after a long winter break and there are some intriguing fixtures to look forward to. In La Liga the two-horsed title race between Real Madrid and Barcelona is heating up and both teams need wins, while in Italy, Roma, Napoli and Milan are desperately trying to cling to Juventus’ coattails. Here we round up some of the best bets from across the Europe’s top leagues, bearing in mind Germany is still on a winter break and the Premiership is breaking for the FA Cup: </p><h2 style="text-align:center"></h2> <h2 style="text-align:center">Serie A</h2> <h2>Juventus v Bologna</h2> Juventus moved four points clear at the top of the league – with a game in hand – by beating Roma 1-0 in the last game before the winter break, and they can ease back into things with an easy home game against 15<sup>th</sup>-placed Bologna, who have won just once in eight away games this season. Juventus have won all nine home games this season, conceding just six goals in the process, and their extremely strong defence should allow them to keep up that 100% record here. The odds are low, just 1.21 being the best price you can get on a Juventus outright win, but that shoots up to 1.83 when you go for Juventus to win to nil. Juventus, with their fearsome backline of Leonardo Bonucci, Andrea Barzaghli and Giogio Chiellini, have kept two clean sheets in their last three games, even keeping quiet a Roma team that has scored more than any other side this season, and they should be able to do a similar job on a Bologna team that have failed to score in five of their last seven league games. <h2>Genoa v Roma</h2> Roma will be bitterly disappointed to have lost to Juventus in that crucial top of the table six-pointer, but they bounced back with a comfortable win over Chievo and have now won four of their last five games. They can continue to pile the pressure on Juventus when they travel to Genoa this weekend, and they have a great chance of winning. They have beaten Genoa in each of the last four times these two teams have met, including a 3-2 win away in May 2016. The odds are great on a Roma win, <a href=";book=Pinnacle">with Pinnacle</a> offering 1.92, and that looks an excellent bet. <h2>Napoli v Sampdoria</h2> Napoli have found their shooting boots in recent weeks, scoring 16 goals in their last four games to move up to third in the table. They host a Sampdoria side that has conceded 24 goals in 18 games this season and will fancy their chances of cementing their status as Serie A’s top scoring side here. Bwin is offering 1.75 on Napoli to score in both halves, or Napoli and the over 2.5 goals is 1.70 with Bet Stars. If you’re feeling more daring, the same bookmaker has 2.50 on Napoli and over 3.5 goals. <h2>Milan v Cagliari</h2> Milan are winless in their last two games and will be desperate for three points to muscle back into title contention. Cagliari beat relegation-threatened Sassuolo 4-3 in their last game but have been poor of late, losing the previous two games to nil, including a 5-0 thrashing at the hands of Napoli. Milan are 1.44 with Pinnacle to win this and that looks a good option for an accumulator, or you can get 1.69 <a href=";book=Betvictor">with Bet Victor</a> on Milan -1 on the Asian handicap. <h2>Lazio v Crotone</h2> Crotone have been hopeless this season and look nailed on to be relegated, having accrued just nine points so far. They have lost 12 of their 17 games, and will dread an away game against fourth-placed Lazio, who have won two-thirds of their home games this season. Lazio are 1.33 with <a href=";book=William Hill">William Hill</a> and Stan James to win this, which looks a banker, but for more value you could go Lazio -1.75 on the Asian handicap at 2.03 <a href=";book=Bet365">with Bet365</a>. <h2 style="text-align:center"></h2> <h2 style="text-align:center">La Liga</h2> <h2>Real Madrid v Granada</h2> Real Madrid are still unbeaten this season, with 10 wins and five draws from 15 games, leaving them top of the league with a game in hand and with the league’s most impressive goal difference. Granada have won just once and lost nine of their 16 games to leave them second from bottom and destined to be relegated. This should prove to be a mismatch and there is no value in the outrights, with Real just 1.08 at Sky Bet. Real Madrid should win comfortably, but in their last two meetings they have only triumphed by a single goal, winning 1-0 at home last season and 2-1 away this season. The time before that they destroyed Granada and won 9-1, so it is hard to predict. But with Real Madrid scoring more than two goals per game and Granada conceding more than two goals per game, the winning margin should be decent here. But even Real Madrid -2 on the Asian handicap gets you a mere 1.33. You might be better off leaving this game. <h2>Villarreal v Barcelona</h2> Villarreal are a decent side and look to be on course for another top five finish in La Liga, but they will struggle to deal with the attacking talents of Barcelona. They haven’t beaten the Catalan side since 2008, with Barcelona winning 10 of their last 12 meetings. The last three clashes between these sides have seen over 2.5 goals, and with Barcelona scoring an average of 2.56 goals per game this season and Villarreal scoring an average of 1.75, you would expect that to continue. Villarreal have the meanest defence in the league so far this season, but that invariably all goes out the window when Luis Suarez, Lionel Messi and Neymar roll into town. Barcelona and over 2.5 goals looks a good bet at 2.20 with Bet Stars. <h2>Eibar v Atletico Madrid</h2> Eibar have performed well above expectations this season and a four-match unbeaten run has carried them up to eighth in the table, just five points and two places below the mighty Atletico. But languishing in sixth in the league will infuriate Atletico, who have grown accustomed to being right at the top trading blows with Real and Barca over the past five seasons. They are far too good to be outside the top three and they should go on a good run in 2017 as they have a pretty comfortable fixture list over the next month. They are already on a roll, having won their last three games, and can make it four on the bounce here. The odds are pretty good at 1.72 with Marathonbet, but for even more value you might consider backing Atletico winning to nil – a feat they have achieved in their last two league games – at 2.55 with Bet Victor as Atletico are an exceptional side at the back. Or try Atletico and the under 3.5 goals at 2.25 with Bet Stars as all of Atletico’s last five league games have seen under 3.5 goals thanks to their solid defence. <h2></h2> <h2>Real Sociedad v Sevilla</h2> Sevilla are a fascinating team in that for the last few years their home form has been exemplary and their away form has been atrocious. They keep finishing in the top six but they would be challenging for the title if they could sort out their away form. This season they have the best home record of any team in La Liga, with seven wins from eight putting them above Real Madrid in the home table. Their away form has improved a bit this season, but just three wins from eight on the road has left them below Real and Barca in third in the overall table. Sociedad is a tough place to go to. They have won five of their eight home games and lost just once at home – to Real Madrid all the way back in August – and are fifth in La Liga, so they will feel confident of picking up a result here, despite being underdogs. Sociedad-draw double chance looks good at 1.42 with Bet365.<p></p>
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