Wednesday’s Copa del Rey previews: 2012/13 – 16th January

16 Jan

unaiemery

Real Zaragoza v Sevilla

Click for projected Marca line-ups

-Zaragoza, who’ve won only three home La Liga games in 2012/13, defeated Sevilla 2-1 at La Romareda when the two last met earlier this season.

-However, in contrast to their league fortunes on home soil, Zara have won each home leg of the two cup rounds they’ve played so far, beating Granada 1-0 and Levante 2-0.

– With a solitary win, three draws and six defeats on their league travels this season, Sevilla have so far proved to be a terrible road team.

-Like their hosts today, though, Sevilla have been the opposite of their league away form when competing in the cup, winning both away legs; 3-0 at Espanyol and 5-0 at Mallorca.

-Each team has traded wins in recent head to head matchups – with no draws for several years.

Conclusion:

Both teams to score was going to be my pick and should still be a decent bet at 1.91, but Sevilla have a new boss in Unai Emery, and as I don’t oppose new coaches in their first game as a betting principle because of the immediate momentum change it often brings to a losing team, I’ve taken a chance on Sevilla draw no bet at 1.91. Only for small stakes, mind.

Admittedly, I’m less keen to utilize this principle in an away game, particularly a cup fixture in which a team has had little time to adapt to the tactics of it’s new boss. But as it is a principle, I’d better stick to it!

.diegobuonanotte

Barcelona v Malaga

Click for projected Marca line-ups

-As expected and as they always have done in recent years, Barca easily defeated Malaga at La Rosaleda in La Liga round nineteen last weekend.

-Barca will rest several first team players for this game. David Villa, now injured, is one of them.

-It is not clear if Messi will start at time of writing (probably won’t be until close to kick off when we know for sure).

-Malaga will likely also rest a few first team players.

-Little needs to be said about Barca – league or cup, home or away, regular starters missing or not – they just keep winning.

-Malaga, however, have so far failed to impress in the 2012/13 Copa del Rey – scraping past lowly Cacereno on away goals and relying on four late goals to defeat Eibar when on the verge of exiting the competition.

-The Anchovies have at least managed to score in both away legs of the two cup rounds they’ve played.

-Both teams have scored in the last six head to head matchups between these two.

Conclusion:

With Barca virtually guaranteed to rest a few of their stars and strong statistical backup I want to bet on and recommend both teams to score at 2.05. However, I really need to see how strong a starting eleven Anchovies boss Pellegrini opts to field before I can fully decide. The goal count, after all, could be heavily affected by this – it’s not Cordoba travelling to Camp Nou again.

Another angle is that if Messi doesn’t start and Malaga do field a near full strength side, then maybe, just maybe the visitors can cover a + 2.25 Asian handicap. I await team confirmation!

Edit: Barca rest a few players but Messi starts. Malaga rest several players – including Toulalan, Joaquin and Isco.

Therefore, while I obviously cannot rule out both teams scoring, BTTS doesn’t look like a strong bet on paper with Malaga missing so many attackers. Toulalan’s ability to marshal the Malaga midfield should prove to be a big loss too.

I’ve opted to bet on the goals bet listed beneath, but if you prefer a punt that’ll last the full match I’ve offered the logical choice below – pity it isn’t – 2 AH at 1.91. Barca should be able to cover three goals, though.

Recommendations: Barca – 2.25 AH at 1.92 and/or over 1.5 first half goals at 1.83

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