Monaco sit top of Ligue 1 and have a chance to extend their lead over PSG to 6 points this evening with a trip to Bastia.
With their 7-3-2 record away from home (averaging 2 points per game, the 2nd best away record in Ligue 1) Monaco have every chance of adding to the 29 goals they have scored on the road. My confidence is in spite of Bastia not being thrashed at home this season, and conceding less than a goal per game (10 in 12). The problem has been I Turcini (The Blues, Bastia) have only scored 11 at home in that same period.
The odds on a straight Monaco win of 1.50 are of no interest to me unless I was sat across the table from a beautiful lady who was promising me an evening of 100% satisfaction based on a correct selection in the W-D-W market.
Monaco have attempted almost 270 shots this season, and they are actually the most clinical team, scoring with 27% of them. The clinical nature is partly due to getting close to 60% of their shots on target this league campaign. One major stats provider had them down as 42% for this stat. However, I watched the games I have recorded and reruns I have access to, and even though the sample size was not complete, I’m pretty sure that the stats are wrong and I am right. Monaco do get a ridiculous amount of their shots on target, and this is NOT sustainable over the course of a season and has to come to an end eventually. Though, we can still expect them to score more of their chances than most teams. Consequently, even if Bastia’s defence don’t give away much tonight, Falcao (16 goals 19 games), Germain (8/23) and company can still find a way through.
Bastia score with less than 10% of their shots, although they have hit the woodwork more than anyone else in the league (13 times). Hitting the woodwork is not misfortune. The goal doesn’t change in size.
Now, here’s where it gets interesting: Leonardo Jardim’s side have scored more than 1 goal away from home in only 50% of their away matches this season. His opponents, Bastia, have conceded more than 1 goal in only 17% (2/12) home games this season. This would point to a low scoring affair.
Worryingly for my selection, Francois Ciccolini has presided over only 3 home defeats in 16/17. Nevertheless, I cannot see Monaco not winning this game. We’ll be reliant on them keeping a clean sheet for only the 5th time on the road. Bastia have scored in 9/12 home matches, which is just below mid-table for that particular statistic. Let’s give this some relevance. Monaco have only conceded 185 shots all season (only bettered by PSG). That average of 7.4 shots per game isn’t split by opposition time. We can safely assume they will concede less against bottom 6 teams and we know that Bastia have a very low conversion rate.
Pleasingly, there have been -2.5 goals in 8/10 Bastia home matches and Monaco have won 10 of their last 11 away matches against bottom 6 sides.
My original gut instinct bet was Monaco & O1.5 goals. Hence the title of this write-up. However, when comparing the odds of 1.83 (implied probability of 54%) to the statistics, I’ve been overwhelmingly shot down by the numbers. Further Bastia only concede about 7 shots per home game and even if league high Monaco continue to belie belief, converting close to 30% of shots, the result would be 1.9 ‘expected’ goals (not to be confused with ‘expected goals’ ;)) So this should not be a mauling. If you’re thinking Monaco and U3.5 is a much safer bet, you’re right. The odds of 2.4 reflect this. 1-1 at 10.0 is also value.
I’m aware Monaco have a trip to Manchester, but that match is 4 days away and it’s not exactly an arduous journey across the channel. Bastia will be without captain Cahuzac (suspended) and Saint-Maximim (winger).
If you do not have an account with BetStars, you can dutch the 1-0 and 2-0 correct scores with other firms and get the same odds, and maybe even better due to late variances.
Again, we’re going well against the odds at 4.33, which implies a 23% chance of hitting. I have this at closer to a 30% chance of hitting. I’m not asking for luck, I’m just asking for fortune :)
Split your stake between Monaco & Under 2.5 (4.33 betstars) and Monaco & Under 3.5 (2.4 betstars)