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World Cup Specials

Four Ways to Bet!

Every four years the World Cup sends us into a spread betting frenzy! There are so many great markets on offer that it's difficult to know where to start.... So we have gone through them all on your behalf and separated the good from the the bad. Here are the ones that might make you sit up and take notice this summer in South Africa...

1. Top Goalscorer
With past winners such as Ronaldo, Eusebio, Gerd Muller and our own Gary Lineker, the Golden Boot is a prized trophy for strikers worlwide. This time round, it's a wide open field and if you can score six goals or more -then chances are you will win the Golden Boot.

David Villa
(Spain) 9/1 Betfair -Just moved from Valencia to Barcelona, he scored 28 goals for Valencia this season and has an international record of 13 in 20 for Spain. He plays well off striking partner Torres and should get at least six games -as Spain are warm favourites to lift the trophy. Will definitely trade shorter during the tournament.

Gonzalo Higuain
(Argentina) 24/1 Betfair -Has emerged as first-choice frontman for Argentina in the last few games following his outstanding form at Real Madrid (39 goals this season). Scored twice in his first five internationals, Gonzo could turn out to be the new Mario Kempes.

Diego Milito
(Argentina) 36/1 Betfair -Yet another Argentinian forward who has come good this season. His form for Champions league winners Inter Milan (30 goals) has paved the way for his return to the international scene after several years in the wilderness.

2. Fastest Goal 87 - 97 secs (Extrabet.com) 90 - 100 secs (Sporting Index)
This provides you with an interest in every game in the tournament -more specifically, the first five minutes of every game. It pays to look at the stats from the last few world cups before venturing into this particular market.

2006 - 70 secs
2002 - 11 secs
1998 - 30 secs
1994 - 90 secs

You have 64 matches to get a goal in the first minute and a half if you a seller, or a nervous 90 seconds behind the sofa should you choose to be a buyer!

3. Total Goals (159 - 161 Extrabet.com, Sporting Index, Spreadex)
Take a look at the goals totals from previous world cups:

Total Goals
Goals Per Game
Biggest Win
6 - 0
8 - 0
6 - 1
6 - 1

So what can we learn from the stats from the last four tournaments? Well there seems to a steady drop in the average number of goals per game -this could be because the smaller nations are getting better at defending and there are less 'dodgy' keepers now in world football. So whilst you can still get the occasional 6-0 drubbing, there are less 3-0 and 4-0 matches.

What are the various spread firms offering on total goals markets? Well they are all offering the same price, which is 159 - 161 goals in the tournament. One important factor about these quotes are that only goals scored in normal time (90 mins play) count towards the total. But only 1 goal was scored in extra time in 2006 and only 3 goals in ET in 2002.

4. Total Yellow & Red Cards
Here are the cards totals from previous tournaments:

Yellows Total (Ave)
Reds Total (Ave)
307 (4.80)
28 (0.44)
272 (4.25)
17 (0.27)
258 (4.03)
22 (0.34)
235 (4.52)
15 (0.29)

The card totals from the previous four tournaments tell that us that players are behaving more badly or/and that referees are under instructions from FIFA to be stricter. A good example of this tough new discipline was the 2006 match between Portugal and Holland which yielded 8 yellow cards and 4 red cards. Only 25 fouls were committed in the game and 11 of those by players not cautioned -so that means 12 cards for 14 fouls! Whatever the reason, the card totals have risen steadily since 1998.
As with the total goals market, the cards market is normal time only (90 mins). There were no cards in extra time in 2002, but there were 7 yellows and 1 red in the last world cup in 2006.

Card Spread Markets:
Yellows Cards 285 - 295 (Extrabet.com, Sporting Index) 287 - 297 (Spreadex)
Red Cards 19.5 - 21.5 (Extrabet.com, Sporting Index, Spreadex)

Chris Shillington from Extrabet has done a video preview on youtube for the total cards and fastest goal market -check it out here

5. Sporting Index Specials
'Dodgy Keepers' 104 - 110
This refers to the number of times the ball is punched by a goalkeeper during the 64 games.
So in order to make a healthy profit (as a buyer), you simply require each keeper to punch it once during the game (90 mins only). Is that too much too ask? We think not, since we were buyers during the last World Cup and African Cup of Nations, and made a profit in the process.

6. Sporting Index Specials
'Last Orders' 26 - 27.5
The number of times that the ball hits the bar during the tournament (90 mins only) is the subject of this particular Sporting Index special market. With the spread being just 26 - 27.5, we feel that this is remarkably low -since the ball doesn't have to rebound into play (normally it does to count in this market). We will definitely be a buyer at 27.5 and be cheering every time it hits the woodwork...




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