Which was the highest scoring FA Cup match this century?

Which was the highest scoring FA Cup match this century? The Football Association (FA) Challenge Cup was inaugurated in 1871 and in its long, illustrious history has seen several eye-watering scorelines. The highest scoring FA Cup match ever was a first round encounter between Preston North End and Hyde at Deepdale on October 15, 1887, which the home team led 12-0 at half-time and went on to win 26-0. Indeed, seven years later, the Lilywhites were at it again, with an 18-0 thrashing of Reading, also in the first round, at Deepdale on January 27, 1894.

However, since the turn of the twenty-first century, the highest scoring FA Cup match took place between Torquay United, of the National League, and Crawley Town, of League Two, at Plainmoor on November 8, 2020. In a bizarre clash, the Gulls led 2-0 at half-time, but shortly afterwards visiting goalkeeper Tom McGill was knocked unconscious, leading to a lengthy suspension of play. Tom Nichols’ penalty gave the Reds hope and they duly equalised deep into stoppage time. However, there was still time for a goal at either end, thereby sending the tie into extra-time after 111 minutes played. Torquay led 5-3, courtesy of two penalties from Asa Hall, but were again pulled back by Nicholls, who scored twice to complete his hat-trick, before Crawley striker Ashley Nadesan made it 5-6 with just two minutes of extra-time remaining.

Which was the highest scoring FA Cup match this century? The FA Cup of course isn’t the only football competition with mind boggling scorelines. Indeed over the years in the UEFA Champions League we have seen impressive goal fests too. It was only September last year that we witnessed Bayern Munich trounce Barcelona in a seemingly improbable 8-2 drubbing. That knockout game left no doubt as to who deserved to continue in the competition. Perhaps most surprising though is that this four goals a half thriller was not even the highest scoring game in UEFA Champions League history.

In fact the game was the third highest scoring in the history of the competition. The prize for second highest scoring game goes to Monaco’s famous 8 – 3 victory against Deportivo in 2003. 11 goals in 90 minutes is near unrivaled entertainment for those watching (unless they are Deportivo fans of course!). The highest scoring game bar none though goes to Dortmund with a 8 – 4 in against Legia Warszawa on 22/11/2016. This group game brought us an astonishing 12 goals, which pretty much shows that anything is possible in the beautiful game.

Being well versed in the art of outliers such as these goal fests can be handy when it comes to placing a bet. Often people draw limits in their mind as to how a game will pan out but realistically there is sometimes far more scope for variation than the average football fan sees. Those ‘ahead of the game’ in terms of how they saw the result going can often get great odds over those who go for a more safe and predictable outcome. Sure when you go the ‘outsider’ route it naturally follows that your selection is going to come in less frequently, but it comes down to value over time, and if your bet has a significantly greater chance of coming up than the odds suggestion, you should still do it because in the long run it will pay off financially.

 

 

Which football team has been relegated from the Premier League most often?

Which football team has been relegated from the Premier League most often? The Premier League was founded, as the ‘FA Premier League’, on May 27, 1992, replacing the old First Division as the top flight of English football. Since the very first Premier League campaign in 1992/93, four teams – namely Crystal Palace, Middlesbrough, Sunderland and West Bromwich Albion – have suffered relegation on four separate occasions. However, the team that has been relegated from the Premier League most often is Norwich City which, in 2019/20, achieved the dubious distinction of being demoted for the fifth.

If we were talking games of chance we’d soon start thinking that it’s time for ‘our luck to change’. How many times with we seen a player at the roulette wheel betting against a certain colour (red for instance) coming up because ‘surely’ it’s about time for the other colour to come in (black). This applies in bricks and mortar situations as well as real money online casino games. Of course in gambling though these are entirely separate events, not more likely dependent on the previous results. This is known as the gamblers fallacy and is understandable on account that the brain looks for patterns.

Which football team has been relegated from the Premier League most often? I can’t help feeling that Norwich, although at least somewhat in control of their own destiny when compared to a game of chance, must be wondering if lady luck has left the building considering their fortunes when in the relegation zone in decent years. Will the 2021 – 2022 season for different for them? We’ll soon get a feel of how it’s going.

Ironically, in the inaugural season of the Premier League the Canaries achieved their highest-ever league finish, third, behind Manchester United and Aston Villa, with 72 points. However, two seasons later, in 1994/95, they won just one of their last twenty matches, finished twentieth and were relegated to the Football League First Division, where they would spend the next nine seasons.

Norwich City were promoted, as champions, in 2003/04, but made an immediate return to the First Division, albeit rebranded as the ‘Championship’, in 2004/05. After another four years in the second tier, the club was further demoted to the third tier, League One, for the first time since being promoted from the old Football League Third Division in 1959/60, in 2008/09. Nevertheless, after successive promotions under Paul Lambert, appointed manager in August 2009, the Canaries regained Premier League in 2011/12. Thereafter, they have yo-yoed back and forth between the Premier League and the Championship, being relegated from the top flight again in 2013/14, 2015/16 and 2019/20.

At time of writing, in the 2021-22 Premier League, Norwich City have played just one game, and unfortunately for them it was a 3-0 trouncing away to Manchester City. Granted Man City are potential title winners but it’s hard to escape the fact that Norwich are once again on the back foot and near the bottom of the table. They will be hoping for a little more success in their upcoming games. They next play Bournemouth, then Leicester City, the Arsenal. Not the easiest starting selection of games, so they will be hoping to at least get ‘something’ from one or two of these games. Fingers crossed for them.

Which England strikers have scored hat-tricks at the World Cup Finals?

Which England strikers have scored hat-tricks at the World Cup Finals? It would be fair to say that England strikers who have scored hat-tricks at the World Cup Finals are few and far between. Of course, the ‘granddaddy of them all’ is Sir Geoff Hurst, who remains the only man to score a hat-trick in a World Cup Final. On July 30, 1966, at Wembley Stadium, Hurst levelled the scores at 1-1 against West Germany after 18 minutes and scored twice more in extra time to secure a 4-2 victory. His second goal, confirmed by the infamous ‘Russian linesman’ Tofiq Bahramov, has remained controversial ever since. There was no doubting his third, though, which caused commentator Kenneth Wolstenholme to exclaim, ‘They think it’s all over. It is now!’

Of course scoring a hat-trick in any game is far from a formality. It’s often seen as an aspiration by footballers due to how difficult it is to achieve. Sometimes footballers find their way into a rich vein of form though, so a potential hat-trick can occasionally be on the cards. For those of you looking for big money sports betting payouts betting on one coming up will typically get you generous odds. That will also be true in the World Cup as there are a finite number of games in the competition.

Interestingly Bruno Fernandes’ Odds for the 2021 – 2022 Premier League golden boot tumbles when he scores a hat-trick in the Manchester United vs Leeds United game (his odds fell from 25-1 to 6-1 – partially on account of his current goal tally, and partly the potential it displayed). There are typically 10+ hat-tricks in the Premier League each year. Broad analysis suggests a little over a 3% chance of a hat-trick being scores in any individual game, so the odds would be reflective of that fact (with more likelihood of course in less competitive games).

 

In any case, I digress.

Which England strikers have scored hat-tricks at the World Cup Finals? Next up is Gary Lineker who, on June 11, 1986, scored three times in the first 34 minutes of England’s third and final group game against Poland at the Estadio Tecnológico in Monterrey, Mexico. Following a 1-0 defeat by Portugal and a goalless draw against Morocco, England needed to beat Poland to progress to the knockout stages from Group F – dubbed the ‘Group of Sleep’ by locals, due to the lack of goals – but did so comfortably.

Last, but by no means least, on the list is Harry Kane who, with Lineker, jointly holds the record for the most goals scored at major tournaments. On June 24, 2018, Kane completed an unusual hat-trick in a 6-1 thrashing of Panama in a group game at Nizhny Novgorod Stadium in Russia. Kane scored his first two goals from the penalty spot, but his third came when a shot by Ruben Loftus-Cheek deflected off his heel and wrong-footed the goalkeeper.

The next big tournament in terms of worldwide attention will be the World Cup (held in Qatar in 2022). It will be interesting to see if any of the world class players in attendance (preferably England players!)  will manage to achieve this uncommon accolade. At the odds you’re likely to get for it, it might be worth a punt.

Euro 2020 Final: What Do the Odds Say We Should Expect from Italy v England?

The Euro 2020 Final has finally arrived in mid-2021, and it’ll see the enigmatic Italians take on the stalwart English in a battle for the crown.

Not only is this a major trophy to win in itself, but the Euros are often seen as a precursor for World Cup success – especially this year, as the Qatar World Cup is a mere 16 months away.

Here, we’re previewing the final through the eyes of the oddsmakers for betting on Italy v England, as well as how the two sides look set to face off stylistically.

The Bookies Think the 55-year Wait Is Over

Euro 2020 Final: What Do the Odds Say We Should Expect from Italy v England?

Source: Unsplash

Getting stuck into the business end of the odds, the bookies foresee a very close game that will, ultimately, result in the Henri Delaunay Trophy coming to England for the very first time. It’s the nation’s first final since the 1966 World Cup, with Southgate’s team being given odds of 8/11 to lift the trophy.

The 90 minutes odds see Italy and a draw a 19/10, with England ahead narrowly at 17/10. So, while the pile-on of English betting may have pulled England’s odds in a bit, it’s clear that a close game is expected. This is further reflected in the ‘Method of Victory’ market, which has the shortest odds of 7/2 sitting on either team to win on penalties.

One of the more telling odds is the increased 9/1 (up from 7/1) given for ‘Harry Kane & Ciro Immobile to have two or more shots on target each.’ Both teams are strong defensively for very different reasons, so one perhaps wouldn’t want to back either team’s central striker to get multiple shots on goal in this colossal game. Still, Immobile averages 3.4 shots per game while Kane clocks in with 2.3, according to the Who Scored statistics.

So, such long odds of 9/1 are warranted from this outlook, and they’re further enforced by the fact that, through six games, both goalies have only faced 12 total shots on target. The stats see Gianluigi Donnarumma having faced eight shots on target inside the box, with Jordan Pickford facing eight from outside of the box. This could perhaps add fuel to the 20/1 odds on Lorenzo Insigne to score from outside of the box.

Overall, the odds lean towards a tight game that’s low on goals. This is further enforced by the 4/9 odds for under 2.5 goals, 16/5 odds for Raheem Sterling to score anytime, and 4/1 odds for Federico Chiesa to score anytime.

The Contrasting Styles of Italy V England

England manager Gareth Southgate is well-known for keeping his cards close to his chest tactically. Still, so far, he’s either gone with an ultra-conservative approach with a 4-3-3, or a more attack-minded 4-2-3-1, but both strategies have seen the English fancy possession over forward movement.

The Italians are almost the exact opposite of England. While they also have a sturdy defence, it’s built on ravenous midfielders closing down the ball. From there, they build their play through pass-and-move football, darting runs around and playing the riskier balls in the final third.

Both sides have held over 52 percent of possession overall through their six games, as well as a pass completion percentage in excess of 86 percent, but the two use the ball very differently. It’s certainly a clash of styles, and while Italy’s method of play is more exciting, England’s unadventurous approach has proven to be very tough to break down. They have the talent to snatch at opportunities when permitted to do so by the score line.

It could well prove to be a final that England keeps in check throughout to take penalties or hold onto by a single goal. On the other hand, Italy’s destructive attack could force England to desert their conservative football early, perhaps leading to an end-to-end game or an Italian onslaught. In any case, the oddsmakers see it being close enough to be decided by penalties.

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