Mark O'Haire: "Nothing Neutral About My Weekend Selections"

6 min

An in-form Mark O’Haire returns with two continental goal bets for the weekend.

The Swiss Super League = Goals

It may come as a surprise to some but Switzerland’s top-flight – the Super League – is the second-highest scoring league in Europe behind the Eredivisie in the Netherlands.

In 2018/19 alone, the 100 league games that have already been played have seen an average of 3.43 goals-per-game, with 69% featuring at least three goals and 47% producing Over 3.5 Goals profit. An eye-watering 73% saw both sides score and on Saturday we’re fortunate enough to be able to support two goal-heavy games at attractive, value prices.

Starting at the Swissporarena as Luzern welcome Lugano, Over 2.5 Goals is simply too big to ignore at 1.83. The two teams are locked in the bottom half of the table, thanks in part to their dreadful defensive efforts; collectively the pair have recorded only three shutouts in their combined 40 Super League fixtures this season, conceding 1.88 goals-per-game.

Nevertheless, neither team is particularly shy at coming forward. The duo have scored in all bar seven of their league outings, combing for an average of 1.50 goals-per-game. Put the season-long records of the pair together and we can see their 40 collective fixtures are producing an average of 3.38 goals-per-game with 29 (73%) busting the Over 2.5 Goals barrier.

Luzern Manager René Weiler (pictured right) has struggled to get his sides defensive issues shored up this season.

Only five of Luzern and Lugano’s combined 40 games have produced fewer than two goals and if we drill down into home and away records, the numbers remain just as strong. For example, 16 (80%) of the duos 20 home/away encounters paid out for Both Teams To Score backers and 14 (70%) crossed the Over 2.5 Goals barrier.

To put those percentages into perspective, a bet with a 70% probability implies odds of 1.43.

With the goal averages in Switzerland sky-high, plus two teams with consistently strong stats for high-scoring showdowns, it makes sense to gobble up 1.83 quotes on this meeting producing Over 2.5 Goals on Saturday evening.

Plenty To Like About This Duo Of Underdogs

At the same time, St Gallen host Thun at the AFG Arena with both clubs looking for vital points in their quest for European qualification. The visitors are just two points off a Champions League qualifying berth having held table-topping Young Boys to a 1-1 draw last time out, whilst St Gallen picked up a well-earned point at second-placed Basel.

Arguably two of the division’s more unglamorous teams, the pair have performed with aplomb in 2018/19 and deserve credit for their forward-thinking football. Only runaway leaders Young Boys have scored more often than Thun. Meanwhile, St Gallen offer the second-most potent attack in the league when hosting Super League opposition.

It means Saturday’s contest should be a very watchable affair and the advice is to again support a goal-heavy game with Over 2.75 Goals trading at 1.85. This selection would see us enjoy a half-stakes profit should exactly three goals be seen, or a full-stakes pay-out if four or more goals are plundered on the banks of Lake Constance.

FC Thun have been prolific in front of goal this season.

Matches involving these two teams are averaging a combined 3.40 goals-per-game, whilst if we dip into their respective home/away records we can see that this selection made money in 16/20 (80%) fixtures, as the average goals-per-game figure rose to 3.85. The duo have collectively kept only four clean sheets across the whole campaign, scoring in 36/40 (90%).

It’s another stats-heavy selection but the numbers are overwhelmingly positive here and the prices available are simply too big to dismiss.

Recommended Bets

  • Luzern v Lugano – Over 2.5 Goals (1.83) – 3pt win
  • St Gallen v Thun – Over 2.75 Goals (1.85) – 3pt win