Football pitch seen from corner position

Written by Cornermanden. The author’s opinions and predictions are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Unibet.

We’re entering the final weeks of Eliteserien. In one way it will be good to get a break from the most entertaining league in the world, but I usually never tire of our domestic leagues, so I wouldn’t mind it continuing for an extra month or two.

Last Week’s Results

I picked three bets on the weekend in Eliteserien: Odd-Tromsø over 3 goals (3-2), Aalesund-HamKam under 2.75 goals (0-0) and Kristiansund to beat Haugesund (they lost 1-0). This concluded another good betting weekend with a total profit of 1.13 units. Lovely.

SATURDAY’S GAMES

The “Dag-Eilev Fagermo Derby”

Odds Ballklubb-Vålerenga

Vålerenga really are in a terrible run of form. A humiliating 3-0 defeat at Lerkendal was followed by another humiliating defeat at home to Bodø/Glimt, where they lost 6-0. It’s about time to bounce back for Fagermo and the team, who in practice have lost all their hope of qualifying for Europe. Something is clearly missing with Strandberg out with an injury. They are big favourites when they go to Skien to face Odd, a team that several of Vålerenga’s players and members of coaching staff have represented before. “Paco” and his Odd side have looked solid and consistent after the summer break, so will look to get another good experience under their belts in a game that for them, at least in terms of league table position, means very little. But the club, fans and players will absolutely look to get one over Fagermo and co., so it won’t be an easy game for Enga. No picks for me in this one (yet).

The 0-0 Philosophy

HamKam-Strømsgodset

Jacob Michelsen and his HamKam started this season by being incredibly hard to beat, conceding few goals (and chances), but unfortunately for them not producing much of their own, either. This made them a team to fancy for low scoring affairs and often draws. During the last 10 games or so, this skill has vanished from their repertoire, but looked to be back to good old normality when they got their beloved 0-0 away at Aalesund. I don’t blame them at all, this is what it takes to survive in a league where teams have more money and better football players. A win at home against Strømsgodset, who haven’t had a thing to play for in a good while, would be very welcome. But can they do it? I don’t see them losing a tie like this, but where will the goals come from? I think this might be another low scoring game for Kamma.

SUNDAY’S GAMES

When Will The Poor Run Stop?

Aalesund-Sandefjord

Things have looked horrendous for Sandefjord ever since they beat Kristiansund at home late in the summer. Why have things turned so bad for “Blåhvalene”? To put it in simplistic terms, I think they overperformed earlier in the season and probably don’t have a squad capable of much more than a relegation fight. They are yet to decide on who’s the better keeper out of Keto and Storevik, which never is a good sign for any team. On Sunday they travel to Aalesund, who themselves look to be safe from any stressful relegation drama as we approach the end of the season. A draw at home against Sandefjord will be more than enough to calm the nerves, I think. Sandefjord will struggle to win any game before the season ends, but they have been better on their travels than at home. With Aalesund’s midweek game in the legs, Hans Erik Ødegaard’s men should fancy their chances in a difficult game. Few goals seem likely.

Dead Rubber

Sarpsborg 08-Tromsø

There are quite a few dead rubbers as the season’s final games are being played. This is one of them. Sarpsborg 08 and Tromsø both play attractive football and have been a lot better in the last couple of months. I don’t have much more to say about this one other than that I expect an entertaining contest between two teams who want to play football the “right” way.

Must Win Territory

Bodø/Glimt-Kristiansund

I have a lot more to say about this fixture than the one above. Bodø/Glimt will be disappointed to lose out to Molde in the title contest, but will also know that if they win their last four games, second place will be secured and an important step towards a new adventure in Europe will be made. They cruised for the whole game against Vålerenga on Sunday, and look to have restored their mojo – the mojo which made us all so impressed by the way they played and entertained us a year and two ago. Glimt are priced at 1.22 to beat Kristiansund, who themselves are in a very difficult situation at the moment. “Uglan” had a golden chance to close the gap up to Sandefjord on Sunday, when Sandefjord lost to Jerv and they only needed to beat sorry Haugesund at home. Well, they didn’t, which leaves them with a huge task on their hands to have any hope of staying in the division. It doesn’t get much harder than Glimt away, so do they have any chance up north? No, probably not, but Glimt have shown signs of weakness and are in a place where they can prioritise Europe, as they are in a good position to finish in the top two or three in Eliteserien. I’m not betting on this game until I know if Dan Peter Ulvestad is available.

Doom And Gloom

Jerv-Viking

Jerv have somehow managed to end up in a position where they have something to play for. Everything will be a huge bonus for the team for Grimstad, as they look to achieve the impossible by picking up enough points during the last few games of the season. But this is a must win. Sandstø and co. play Rosenborg in a couple of weeks, a game which they are unlikely to get anything from. So the job has to be done against weaker opposition. Viking at home is the perfect opportunity to get the three points. If we look at the last 15 games in Eliteserien, only two teams have a worse points tally than Viking: Jerv and Sandefjord. “Siddisene” only have two wins from their last 15 league games, a horrendous run for any team, especially for a big club like Viking. Although Jerv have impressed in the last weeks and collected some important points, I can’t see them picking up enough draws or/and wins from their last games to have any realistic hope of staying up. Viking are priced at 1.53 to win this one, which is hard to disagree with.

A Good Looking Price

Haugesund-Lillestrøm

From all the teams in Eliteserien this season, placed on a chart where the top teams are the ones I tend to overestimate the most, and the bottom teams are the ones I most consistently underestimate, Lillestrøm tend to be near the top, while Haugesund are closer to the bottom. I just think LSK are a solid, hard team who should be doing better than they currently are, although they started the season very well. However, things have been a bit sticky for Geir Bakke and his team, who have only won three out of their last 10 games. Haugesund, on the other hand, have delivered a good and impressive season in Eliteserien, especially in my eyes, bearing in mind that I thought they might struggle to stay up before the season started. Yet again I’m taking the Lillestrøm side in a game, and yet again I’m betting against Haugesund in a game. This match is played on grass where the away team has everything to play for. Lillestrøm (draw no bet) at 1.75 is a bet I’m taking every day of the week.

So Many Narratives

Molde-Rosenborg

Molde and Rosenborg will conclude the 27th round of Eliteserien, in what looks to be a very interesting game. Rosenborg have refused to stand guard of honour for Molde, and Ole Sæter has signed a deal with the controversial agent Jim Solbakken. The home team will look to strengthen their dominance over Rekdal’s team, and Rosenborg have every reason to be fired up for this game in their chase for a top three spot. Can a card bet be something to ponder about? Yes, definitely, but my experience is that the referees in Eliteserien have dished out cards less often in these types of games, where they allow big tackles and aggression to dominate. Unibet and every other bookie expects this to be a high scoring game, which I actually disagree with. 3-5-2 against 3-5-2 can often be a tight affair with two teams cancelling each other out, as was the game when these two met in April. 

Conclusion

As always I have a corner bet or two planned for the weekend, but there’s currently no odds available for me to choose from. I have landed on one (non corner) bet: