Tippeligaen – Sarpsborg v Stromsgodset Preview (21/8/16)

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Sarpsborg preview

The hosts have only picked up one point from their last two games but have deserved much more. They lost against Valerenga 0-2 (somehow) despite dominating but it was one of those days when they were destined not to score. Then last week they dominated Odd but couldn't breach 10 men and had to settle for a 0-0 draw. Sarpsborg were extremely tempting to back on a +0.75 asian handicap last week but I bottled it and decided to refrain from betting. They have generally been a covering machine in recent months. The aforementioned defeat to Valerenga was their first at home since the opening day of the season and also the first time they conceded in front of their own fans for over 500 minutes! Performance wise, Sarpsborg have been playing well though which is encouraging.

Stromsgodset preview

Something clearly isn’t right with Godset at the moment. They are winless in their last four games and simply aren’t playing well enough. Some of their results and performances were understandable, and almost excusable. However, they have nowhere to hide after only drawing with Start last weekend (1-1). The truth is they deserved no better than a point either. They look the lead from a penalty but generally struggled to add to that advantage, creating little, along with poor finishing. Start actually put them in trouble on numerous occasions and the final outcome didn’t mask anything. I’m not quite sure what's wrong with Godset but they can’t be trusted right now and seem in a huge rut. The whole team seems flat and this will be a tough fixture for them.

Conclusion & betting analysis

The visitors aren't great travellers at the best of times. So when they are in poor form like they are now then it’s a bit of a no brainer decision to bet against them. Sarpsborg are generally very strong at home and if we ignore the loss to Valerenga which was extremely unlucky, they haven't really done a lot wrong recently. Quite frankly, at the moment I rate them as the better team and at this rate will finish above a Stromsgodset side who are clearly struggling. The visitors will always be rated highly by the bookies because on paper they have a decent amount of quality. This ensures Sarpsborg are a nice price on a -0.25 asian handicap, generally around the 2.0 mark. This is more than acceptable in my opinion and at very worst they should draw the fixture.

Prediction: 1-0
Recommended bet 1 unit: Sarpsborg -0.25 @ 2.03 (minimum odds acceptable 1.85)

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