Norway Eliteserien – Molde v Odd Preview (22/8/20)

Match Preview

Molde have lost their last two matches in the league and now find themselves seven points adrift of Bodø/Glimt at the top of the table. Most of the problems have been on the road where they’ve lost their last three consecutive games. They did however suffer their first domestic defeat in nearly 2 years at the Aker Stadion vs Brann recently. I think the main reasons behind Molde’s demise have been injuries, lack of a settled team selection and probably just an overall build up of games this season which has left them fatigued in a mental and physical way. Their defence is vulnerable and can be ‘got at’ which isn’t a surprise when most of their first choice backline is ruled out. MFK played in the midweek Champions League qualifiers and hammered Finnish side Kups 5-0. They are going to be travelling to Slovenia to face Celje in just five days time and you have to wonder if they will prioritise that fixture.

If Odd win this game they will move level on points with Molde and they are in red hot form having won 7 of their last 8 games. Whether they can keep this up remains to be seen but Jan Frode Nornes deserves great credit for getting them playing so well. Odd have a consistent team and there appears to be great cohesion and chemistry between everyone. Elba Rashani is clearly in great form on the left wing and even striker Mushaga Bakenga is scoring goals now. He looked like a dubious sort of signing to replace the prolific Torgeir Børven but actually seems useful at the moment.

Molde to win at a price around the 1.80 mark doesn’t really interest me. Even if they had full focus on this game I’m not sure I’d trust them right now. The obvious bet is over 3 goals. Molde fixtures tend to be wide open and contain an abundance of chances. They can’t be relied upon defensively at all. Odd have only conceded four away goals in 6 road fixtures this season but I’d be surprised if they managed to snuff out the Molde attack force. I don’t know what sort of XI MFK will field and I suspect it will be rotated with the CL qualifying fixture on Wednesday to consider. Midfielder Etzaz Hussain definitely won’t be featuring due to suspension. Both sides have enough in their armoury to score at least 3 goals between them so over 3 is the bet I’ll go with.

Prediction: 2-2

Recommended bet: Over 3 goals @1.84