Pathetic excuses from Boateng

Boxing Day 2008, at Eastlands, the day that destiny was written in the stars for Hull City. It was to prove pivotal, it was the day that caused Hull to be finally relegated on 24th April 2010.

This was the day, that according to the excuse making George Boateng led to Hull City getting relegated 16 months later. What a wise man he is after the event.

If I hadn’t known better I would have sworn that Boateng is a professional footballer who should be big enough to take responsibility for his own poor performances, and admit that he wasn’t up to the job.

But no, Boateng is a product of the modern day whinging, moaning, spoilt professional footballer that takes no responsibiltiy for his own actions, instead pointing the finger at someone else in a vain attempt to blame others for his own shortcomings.

To suggest that the half-time team talk on the pitch at Manchester City resulted in their relegation is nothing short of embarrassing, I’m sure it didn’t help, but no way could it have led to Hull’s relegation 16 months later.

Boateng said it killed everyones confidence, well the morale of the team didn’t look too bad when Jimmy Bullard re-enacted the incident earlier this season after scoring a penalty to earn a draw there. In fact team spirit looked great at the time.

Ok, so only 7 league wins from the 55 games since that infamous team talk suggests something went wrong afterwards, the stats don’t lie. But what the stats don’ tell you is how much Hull had overachieved before that incident, they could never maintain the sort of results they were getting prior to that.

One statement sums up Boateng for me, he said “People will say ‘why did you not say anything?’ but he was our manager.” And there for me is the real reason Hull went down, beacause the team had no backbone.

Last chance for Hull

Needing to make up 4 points – from an available 9 – on West Ham just to be in with a chance of staying up, victory over Sunderland is a must for Hull today.

After today’s game, Hull have are away to Wigan (3rd May), and then at home to Liverpool (9th May). You would have to imagine the majority of Hull’s points will need to come today, and against Wigan.

West Ham are at home to Wigan today, they then travel to Fulham (2nd May), before entertaining Man City on the 9th May. The Hammers know that if results go their way today, with their goal difference (21 goals better than Hull), they will be safe.

The question for West Ham is, can they handle the pressure? If Hull slip up again, can West Ham capitalise on it?

Latest relegation betting has Hull at 1/7 to go down with Betfred and Paddy Power. West Ham are 5/1 with Stan James, Bet365 and Skybet.

Hull are 7/5 with Bet365, William Hill, Blue Sq and 888 Sport to beat Sunderland today. West Ham are a best price of 17/20 with William Hill to beat Wigan today.

Unlucky Brown gets the boot

Did Adam Pearson and his board lose their bottle or did Phil Brown deserve to go? Will getting rid of Phil Brown prove to be a masterstroke or a total disaster?

One thing that is for certain is it looks like their final throw of the dice. For me the move smacks of desperation.

Their current position at 2nd bottom of the Premiership suggests that they were well within their rights to fire Brown, but did Hull owe Brown a bit more time and respect after what he has done for them?

After all in the past few years he has saved them from relegation from the Championship, and then got them promoted to the Premier League, before securing a 2nd season there.

If the rumours are true that Hull might have to go into administration should they get relegated, then that is bad management by the Chairman (and previous Chairman) and his board, it’s not Phil Brown’s fault they can’t run the club properly.

In my opinion that is why Brown has gone, they are going for the quick fix, the ‘New Manager Effect’. Hoping a new a new man at the helm will give them the boost to pick up the 4-5 wins that will give them a chance of staying up.

This policy has had mixed results, it didn’t work for Newcastle last season, but I remember it worked for Fulham a few years ago when they got rid of Chris Coleman and replaced him with Lawrie Sanchez.

I remember thinking that Coleman was unlucky at the time, but Sanchez kept them up so you would have to say they made the right decision in the end. Shearer and Newcastle are the opposite example of this though.

Another possible reason for his sacking could be that he had possibly lost the dressing room? The recent bust up between Jimmy Bullard and Nicky Barmby suggests all was not well behind the scenes.

In fairness to Brown though, it didn’t look like he had lost the players, judging by their performance against Arsenal on Saturday.

I do believe though that this decision is a short term, and maybe short sighted one. If, and it looks like they will, Hull go down, then what purpose will it serve having a new manager at the helm? Surely having the stability of Phil Brown at the helm would have been a better bet to get Hull back up.

It is a gamble and ultimately the decision will only be proved right or wrong by Hull’s fate at the end of the season.

Hull are currently a best price of 8/11 to get relegated with Coral and Bet365. They are as short as 1/2 with some firms.

Premier League Winner Betting

The Premier League winner online betting market was blown open with results at the weekend, and it would appear that the bookies now have it down to a two horse race.

Chelsea won 2-1 away at Burnley and find themselves cut from 5/6 into a best price of 8/13 with most online bookmakers including William Hill, Paddy Power, Blue Square and 888Sport.

After their remarkable win over Arsenal at Emirates Stadium, Manchester United find themselves cut from 11/4 to 11/5 with Paddy Power, Sky Bet and Stan James. While Arsenal have drifted out to a massive 12/1 with VC Bet and Betfred. Odds this long could represent a football trading opportunity on a betting exchange.

For the time being I am going to keep Manchester City in the betting, they are 40/1 with Bet365, VC Bet and Betfred after their regulation home win over Portsmouth.

Tuesday Match Betting – Hull V Chelsea, 7.45pm

Chelsea have the chance to put further daylight between themselves and the chasing pack on Tuesday night when they travel to Hull City.

Chelsea can be backed at a short 2/7 with Bet365, 888Sport, Betfred, Blue Square, Boylesports, Coral, Ladbrokes, Paddy Power, Sky Bet and Totesport.
The Draw is 9/2 with VC Bet and Hull are 14/1 with VC Bet and Stan James.

Premier League Winner Betting

Manchester United went back top of the league with an easy 4-0 win over Hull City. United have been slightly cut in the online betting, and are now a best price of 11/4. Chelsea are still 5/6 favourites with most online bookmakers.

Remarkably I haven’t heard Alex Ferguson moaning about anything yet. Oh yeah I forgot, they won.

The main problem I would have with backing United though, is their over dependence on Wayne Rooney. If he where to get injured its hard to see where the majority of United’s goals would come from.

Up front Dimitar Berbatov has looked far from convincing, while Michael Owen has had limited chances, but when given one has failed to take it.

Paul Scholes looks on his last legs and hasn’t chipped in with his usual quota of midfield goals, leaving Carrick, Fletcher and Anderson to try and fill the void. Which they can’t do.

Ryan Giggs no longer plays out wide leaving Nani, Park and Valencia to provide the width, it’s hard to see where any creativity is going to come from with these three.

Leaving just Rooney, who it has to be said has excelled in the absence of Ronaldo and Tevez. Who knows how good he might have been by now had Ferguson not continually played him out wide in negative rolls during his early years at the club, wasting his talent and setting his development back years in my view.

Both Arsenal and Chelsea are both to play (on Wednesday) before United’s next game, meaning that Alex Ferguson’s team could be back down to third before they next kick a ball.

Adding to that United’s next game, a week on Sunday (31st Jan) is against Arsenal at Emirates Stadium, meaning the next eight days could go a long way to deciding the outcome of the league title.

Premier League Winner Football Betting

Chelsea are 5/6 with Bet365
Manchester United are 11/4 with Paddy Power
Arsenal are 10/3 with Coral (a £50 Coral Free Bet is available to new customers)
Manchester City are 33/1 with BetVictor

Using the free bets provided by online bookmakers could be a good way to place season long bets such as league title winners. Using this (Matched Betting) method ensures you don’t clog up your betting bank for months on end, leaving it free to be used for football trading.

Saturdays Premier League Betting

Match Betting

3pm – Manchester United V Hull

Only one game today, and it gives Manchester United the chance to go back to the top of the Premier League, when they take on Hull at Old Trafford this afternoon.

No real value in United today with any of the online bookmakers, they are a best price of 1/6 with Betfred, Ladbrokes, Paddy Power,
Sky Bet and VC Bet.

The draw is 7/1 with VC Bet. And Hull are 20/1 to cause an upset with 888Sport, Blue Square, Coral and Stan James.

Correct Score Betting

A 3-0 win for United looks a good call to me and is 13/2 with VC Bet, Coral and Boylesports.

2-0 to Fergusons men is the favourite at 11/2 with Betfred, VC Bet, Coral and Boylesports. Trading the Correct Score markets could be an option here.

A Hull win could only come in the form of a 1-0 win (and a miracle), that is a best price of 45/1 with Paddy Power.