Low the way to go at Huddersfield

In a new column, Sky Bet's Dale Tempest scours the lesser-known markets in search of value for this weekend's FA Cup ties.

Last Updated: 16/02/13 at 14:55 Post Comment

It's hard to see Wilshere playing against Blackburn at the Emirates

It's hard to see Wilshere playing against Blackburn at the Emirates

Dale Tempest is a man who knows both sides of the betting fence.

As a former professional footballer - Fulham, Huddersfield and Colchester were among his clubs during a 16-year career - he knows exactly how the game is played.

These days in his role as Sky Bet's public relations director - you may have seen him on Sky Sports News - he's very much got his finger on the pulse of the markets as both a punter and a bookmaker.

Today he starts a new column for us, highlighting his best bets for the weekend's action, concentrating on some of the lesser-known markets and exploring the mindset of the bookies.

Here is his take on this weekend's FA Cup ties.

Under 2.5 goals in Huddersfield v Wigan at evens

I've seen Huddersfield a couple of times in recent weeks - I used to play with their recent caretaker-manager Mark Lillis - and it's a real struggle to see who you'd pick as a first goalscorer for Huddersfield. Their last seven goals have been scored by seven different goalscorers and there is no obviously consistent goal threat. In addition, the pitch over at the John Smith's Stadium isn't at its best now that the rugby league season is under way and I can see this being a bit of a struggle for both teams to create chances. Wigan look sure to make major changes, as they've done in previous rounds, and both of the Latics' previous away ties in the cup have ended 1-0 - at Bournemouth in a replay and Macclesfield in the last round. As for Huddersfield, they've kept clean sheets in their last two home games - against Cardiff and Crystal Palace. I generally play the 'unders' in the 2.5 goals market and at evens this definitely looks like a cracking bet to me.

Arsenal to beat Blackburn by a single goal at 3/1

Arsenal will certainly have one eye on their Champions League clash with Bayern Munich on Tuesday and don't see them taking any chances with their line-up - it's hard to see Jack Wilshere playing for example. In the last round they left their big names on the bench at Brighton and did just enough to get over the line, winning 3-2 in the end. I can see something similar in this one - a single goal win will do them. Jordan Rhodes is the obvious goal threat for the visitors but I think Arsenal have enough to see Rovers off.

Everton to beat Oldham by a single goal at 11/4

and

Everton & Arsenal both to win by a single goal at 14/1

Only twice in 22 games has an Everton match been settled by more than one goal - at Old Trafford last week and against Cheltenham last month. In the league, their last six wins have all been by a 2-1 scoreline - you have to go back to September to find something different. With a run like that you often find that some bookies can be slow to react. A lot of their correct-score prices these days are automatically generated by spreadsheets and algorithms so unusual trends aren't always picked up immediately - I remember it was the same initially when Chelsea kept winning 1-0 and 2-0 at home under Jose Mourinho. The key is to latch on before the bookies start to change the markets and that's what I try to do as a punter. Oldham have been struggling in the league but will be buoyed by the fact they were able to beat Liverpool in the last round so should put up a decent fight. Again, a one-goal win looks the way to go. If you double it up with the same bet on Arsenal, it will pay a tasty 14/1.


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