Tippeligaen – Rosenborg v Haugesund Preview (23/7/16)

RBK-FKH

Rosenborg preview

The champions slipped up last week, conceding a late equaliser against Aalesund. Yet they still managed to extend their lead at the top because Odd lost to Bodo Glimt. The gap is up to four points, which without being comfortable is still a nice cushion to have. Rosenborg have been dropping points away from home and have actually only won 3 of their last 6 Tippeligaen fixtures. All of those wins were here at the Lerkendal Stadion where they still have a 100% record. For this match they miss two key players to suspension, right back Jonas Svensson and midfielder Anders Konradsen. It’s also possible that RBK will rest some players because they have other things on their mind. They are through to the latest round of Champions League qualifying and it’s currently their number one priority. Their match against Viking has even been postponed next week such is the importance of that two legged tie. There is every chance Rosenborg might be below par here and it’d be understandable if their focus was elsewhere.

Haugesund preview

FKH were rocked by the resignation of Mark Dempsey, but new coach Andrea Loberto’s first match in charge could’ve hardly gone any better. They beat Viking 4-1 last week and to claim such a great victory in a local derby would’ve given everyone a real boost. It was interesting to see Loberto stick with the 3-5-2 formation which Dempsey had successfully installed into the team. Haugesund have been one of the big surprise packages this season and currently reside in fifth place. They are quite a unique side in the Tippeligaen and have their own style. Maybe there’s a chance for them to catch RBK cold and earlier in the season they did well to draw 1-1 vs the champions. There are however two negatives in that key midfielder Filip Kiss and fellow middle man Haris Hajradinovic are both suspended. Eirik Maeland is still injured so FKH are lacking options in midfield.

Conclusion

This is a tough one because Rosenborg might have their attention elsewhere. They have just played a tough European match on Wednesday night and in just a few days time they welcome APOEL here in what is a huge encounter. I expect the hosts to rest and rotate some players so this should be a good time for Haugesund to visit. In recent times, most RBK home games have been good for overs and also taking Rosenborg on some sort of handicap. But in this instance we might see a change from the norm. I doubt the champions will want to exert too much energy, and Haugesund could approach the game in a negative way. There’s every chance they could switch to something like a 5-3-2 formation and make themselves hard to break down. I have a feeling this will be a rare match that Rosenborg don’t win at home, with something like a 1-1 draw being a possibility. There are a lot of question marks, but my gut instinct is a tighter sort of match which there are fewer goals than in most normal RBK home games.

Prediction: 1-1

Betting analysis

Rosenborg are on a -1.25 handicap and the goal line is set between 3 and 3.25. Under normal circumstances I’d say this is absolutely fair and might even consider betting on both of those markets. But in this particular instance I’m not convinced. There are doubts about how strong the RBK starting XI will be, or if they are focused on the job in hand. In all fairness, a weakened Rosenborg side dominated should’ve beaten Aalesund last week, but this will be a much tougher challenge. Haugesund are no mugs and should come here high on confidence after their great win last week. They are more than capable of causing problems to Rosenborg, even if the hosts were at full strength and focus! I think this is a dangerous match to bet on. For those who are brave, I’d lean towards Haugesund +1.25 and under 3.25 goals. However, it would be pretty silly to back against the best team in the league who have a 100% home record. There are other and more safe betting opportunities to get involved with this weekend, there’s no need to get involved here. But for those who presume this is a banker home win then be careful, because there certainly some factors against Rosenborg today.

Recommended bet: None

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