Under 4 Asian total cards in Arsenal v Brentford 1pt 1.9 bet365
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Kevin Pullein’s best bet
Peter Bankes is a good referee. He does reach for his cards more often than most of his colleagues.
This is Bankes’s fourth season in the Premier League. His average is half a card a game above the competition average. Clearly there are incidents he feels are worthy of a card and some referees do not. That is just how he sees things. There will always be variations between officials, differences of opinion about what the rules require.
Today Bankes referees his 51st Premier League game, at the Emirates where Arsenal play Brentford. His appointment is almost certainly the reason bet365 quote an Asian total cards line as high as four. However, it is possible that decimal odds of 1.9 for under are too big. They are equivalent to the fractional price of 9-10. Bet under.
Each yellow will count as one card and each red as two cards. If the total is lower than four the bet will win, if it is four stakes will be returned and if it is higher than four the bet will lose.
The questions we need to consider are: what would the right price be with a middle-of-the-range referee, and how different should it be because the referee is Bankes?
The number of cards likely to be shown in a game varies with the anticipated difference in ability between the teams. Brentford are a wonderful club having a great season, but they would regard themselves as outsiders at Arsenal. Odds in the result-related markets, which seem about right to me, imply Arsenal have more than a 70 per cent chance of scoring each goal that is scored.
In comparable Arsenal home games over the seasons card make-ups below four have occurred much more often than card make-ups above four. The same is true of home games that were London derbies against opponents other than Tottenham. The chance of a low make-up is smaller today than it would have been on most of those previous occasions, but it may still be bigger than is implied by decimal odds of 1.9.
Thought for the week
Tonight Real Madrid play Al-Hilal for the right to be called world champions. It will not attract a global audience.
The problem for the Fifa Club World Cup is that there is already a bigger and better competition – the Uefa Champions League.
Eighteen times out of 18 the Champions League winners have gone to the Club World Cup and beaten whoever they faced in the semi-finals, and 14 times out of 17 they have won in the final. More often than not their final opponents were the champions of South America, but tonight they will not be. Saudi Arabian club Al-Hilal are the most recent champions of Asia.
The Uefa Champions League showcases the best players from around the world. However, it is dominated by a small number of clubs from a small number of countries, all of them, inevitably, given the nature of the competition, from Europe. Thirteen of the clubs in this season’s round of 16, which starts next week, are from England, France, Germany, Italy or Spain.
Fifa have announced that from 2025 the Club World Cup will be played in June and expanded from seven to 32 clubs, most of whom, if previous planned changes are anything to go by, will be from Europe. So it will be an inter-season friendly tournament dominated at half pace by leading European sides. They think they can make more money playing privately arranged exhibition games, which is why they have protested. Fifa did not consult the clubs or the players.
Fifa’s ultimate objective should be to nurture the development of football around the world so that eventually – this is not going to happen anytime soon – clubs from outside Europe will be able to compete on and off the pitch with clubs from inside Europe. Then we could have a Club World Cup captivating a huge global audience.