Archive for June, 2007

Real Madrid fire Capello days after title win

Capello is fired from Real MadridReal Madrid have fired coach Fabio Capello, less than two weeks after the Italian led the club to their first piece of major silverware in four years.

In a move that was widely anticipated in the Spanish press over the last few weeks, Madrid sporting director Predrag Mijatovic confirmed at a press conference on Thursday that Capello would not be continuing in the role.

As sporting director I have made a report about all that happened last season,” Mijatovic said following a meeting by the club’s board. With that report, the president and board of directors have taken the unanimous decision not to continue with Fabio Capello as coach.”

Capello’s final competitive game in charge of Madrid proved to be a memorable one, with Real battling back from a half-time deficit to beat Real Mallorca 3-1 at home and pip arch-rivals Barcelona to the title on the final day of the season.

That sparked wild scenes of celebration at the Bernabeu, and later at the Spanish capital’s famous Cibeles fountain in the centre of the city where thousands of people congregated.

However, it was not enough to save the 61-year-old Italian from being cast aside less than a fortnight later.

Media reports suggest former Madrid midfielder Bernd Schuster is favourite to take over from the Italian, although the German’s current club Getafe announced on Thursday morning they had no agreement in place with any other club regarding the coach.

Madrid president Calderon also said last week that Michael Laudrup, Ronald Koeman and Arsene Wenger were among the other coaches that they had looked at.

Add comment June 28th, 2007

Are you the betting ACE? Wimbledon Betting Promotion – win up to GBP1000 a day!

If you’re betting on Wimbledon have you checked out the latest offer at top UK bookie SportingOdds?

Every day throughout Wimbledon (June 25th – July 8th) they’re giving away £1,000 (or currency equivalent) in cash prizes to their top-performing Tennis customers in a promo called “Are you a betting ACE?”

SportingOdds Wimbledon promotion






That’s £1,000 free a day!

Just place 5 or more Tennis bets on any the Wimbledon markets onsite at SportingOdds with a total stake of £5 (or currency equivalent) and the punter who makes the most money relative to their total stake will pick up a daily cash prize. There’s also an additional Tier II prize level for customers placing 10 or more bets.

Click to visit SportingOdds.comHow to enter the SportingOdds Wimbledon Competition

To qualify for the Tier 1 daily cash prizes you must place 5 or more Tennis bets worth £5 (or currency equivalent). All Tennis bets qualify but check the Terms and Conditions on site for further information. The savvy bettor with the highest winnings percentage will pick up the first prize.

For example…
If you place 5 bets of £3 for a total stake of £15 and wins £75 will have a winnings percentage of 500%. You would beat a punter who places 5 bets of £60 for a total stake of £300 and wins £1200 or a winnings percentage of 400%. In the event of a tie, the bettor with the highest total stakes will be considered the winner.

Terms and Conditions

  1. All bets must be placed on different Tennis markets and the customer’s total daily stakes on these markets must be £5 (or currency equivalent) or more.
  2. Only bets that are PLACED and SETTLED on the same day will qualify for the daily cash prizes. For example, if a bet is placed on the 25th June and not settled until the 26th June then it will not be considered as a qualifying bet for any daily cash prize.
  3. Multiple bets can only contain Tennis selections and only multiples that contain different selections will qualify as a separate bet. If a Multiple bet includes a selection from another Sport then it will not be considered as a qualifying bet in this competition.
  4. Punters can win in both prize categories.

Check out here in our comprehensive bookmaker review or use any of the links on this page to visit them directly.

Add comment June 28th, 2007

Newsworthy Online Bookmakers

Click to visit for online bookmaker reviews and ratingsHere’s a couple of news items involving the top rated online bookmakers reviewed at [Sorry, none of these sportsbooks can accept US bettors].

Gala Coral, Bet365 and Betfred make Britain’s top 100 private company list. Gala Coral fell to 22nd on this year’s Sunday Times “Britain’s 100 Biggest Private Companies List”, but ranked sixth on the paper’s “Companies with Biggest Profits” chart. Gaming companies Bet365 and Betfred joined Gala Coral in the top 50 of the 100 biggest list, climbing to 32 and 38 respectively., and make Britain’s top 100 private company list. Gala Coral fell to 22nd on this year’s Sunday Times “Britain’s 100 Biggest Private Companies List”, but ranked sixth on the paper’s “Companies with Biggest Profits” chart. Gaming companies Bet365 and Betfred joined Gala Coral in the top 50 of the 100 biggest list, climbing to 32 and 38 respectively.

So what? Well, it just reinforces our message – only bet online with safe and financially secure bookies. Success breeds success, well, at least it guarantees a payout when you win! Be careful – there are rogue sportsbooks out there!

Paddy Power is planning to open a Spanish betting website in early September, which will move the company into its fourth major European market behind the UK, Ireland and Germany. The venture will mark the Dublin-based group’s second foreign language site, after its German operations, and focus on football according to reports from the company.

So what? is one of our top rated bookies, especially for speciality and novelty betting. Want some entertainment with your punting?…check Paddy out.

Ladbrokes and Paddy Power have paid out a combined £70,000 on punters who bet on two of the Big Brother housemates having sex, despite Channel Four denying it had happened. A spokesman for Ladbrokes said that the BB bonk bet was always a popular one, while Paddy Power’s Darren Haines said that they were not prepared for it to happen so soon.
William Hill said that it was taking the cautious approach and would not be paying out until shows makers confirmed the ‘deed had been done’.So what? While we rate both Paddy Power and Ladbrokes highly this approach from Will Hill just demonstrates why they do not make the grade for inclusion in’s top rated online bookmakers listing!


You can check out comprehensive online sportsbook reviews on each of these top bookmakers here:

Click to read Bet365 Bookmaker ReviewBet365 Bookmaker Review

Click for Paddy Power Bookmaker reviewPaddyPower Bookmaker Review

Click to read Ladbrokes Bookmaker reviewLadbrokes Bookmaker Review

Click for BetFred bookie reviewBetFred Bookmaker Review

Click for Coral Eurobet Bookmaker reviewCoral Eurobet Bookmaker Review


Add comment June 25th, 2007

Defense and Baseball Totals


An overlooked aspect of baseball is defense, but it is an extremely important facet of the game. The old adage “being strong up the middle” is very significant, having a strong defensive catcher, shortstop and center fielder. Shortstops with above-average range can get to grounders and turn them into double plays. Shortstops that lack range won’t get to those balls, and what happens? They end up as singles, a big difference from a double play, especially if you’re the guy on the mound!

For instance, the Florida Marlins are the worst defensive team in baseball. Notice that the Marlins started 17-20 as a favorite, talk about a money-burner! You can examine their overall hitting stats, which are decent, but don’t overlook poor defense. Bad defense can mean more runs and in the right scenario: More singles instead of double plays, more unearned runs because of errors, and more games over the total.

It’s no surprise those same Marlins are 36-30 over the total, including 19-11 over at home. Over the weekend I had a play on a Marlins total with this in mind. In my analysis of the Florida/Kansas City game I wrote, “Everything sets up pretty well for a high scoring game here. The Marlins continues to hit the ball well and play lousy defense, which is always a plus when looking for an Over. And the Royals are suddenly bopping the ball, with rookie sensation Alex Gordon starting to finally figure things out after a couple of really rough months.

“Starting pitching is also a part of this call. Rookie Van Den Hurk has had a couple of nice outings but when he’s been off, it’s been really ugly. KC’s Jorge De La Rosa’s control problems have started resurfacing the last four starts and that’s a huge red flag for him. Add it all up and the prospects for a high scoring contest here are very strong. I’m on the Marlins and Royals to go Over the Total.”

The Marlins committed 3 more errors in the game, with combined 28 hits and 6 walks. It was over the total by the fifth inning as the Marlins eventually came back and won 9-8 (thanks to their bats, not their gloves).

A couple of other teams that have a brutal combination for overs are the Cincinnati Reds and the Texas Rangers: No pitching and bad defense. The Reds defense is ranked third-worst in the NL while the Rangers are second worst in the AL. In fact, the two teams met over the weekend and all three games sailed over the total with scores of 7-6, 8-4 and 11-4. Bring back the dead ball era to help these guys!

In fact, one of the games I released to my clients as an over, reasoning, “Bronson Arroyo continues to struggle, with his hits to innings pitched ratio simply not getting any better. As for Texas starter Kevin Millwood, he’s been about as bad as it gets for the most part. Two starting pitchers in shabby current form, and a day game in a ballpark that yields big numbers on a constant basis are the recipe for a very big offensive day. The first two games in this series have gone Over, and I see more the of the same here.”

When the dust had settled the teams had combined for 4 errors 20 hits and 15 runs. The Rangers pulled away with four runs in the ninth off one of the NL’s worst bullpens. The Reds had one of their three errors in the inning.

The Tigers look to be a scary team if they can get their pitching healthy, which is likely the case. That’s because the Tigers are tops in offense and third in team defense. Getting the bullpen healthy along with starter Kenny Rogers’ return, and Detroit could come close to having a deadly trifecta of hitting, pitching and defense. Hitting and pitching are the two most examined areas in baseball handicapping, but don’t ignore the subtleties, and importance, of defense.

Dave Cokin is one of the top US sports handicappers online today – and you can read more of Dave’s editorials and betting picks here :

Add comment June 23rd, 2007

Betting on Wimbledon?

Visit for the latest online sportsbook reviews and ratingsThe only reason I ask is that here are 2 online bookmaker promotions that may be of interest…




Click to visit top UK bookie – that cunning little Irishman is back in the game again with a promotion called “SETS APPEAL“.

Its’s a free bet special – if you place a losing match bet on any match that is decided over 5 sets Paddy Power will give you a Free Bet to the same stake on any other Wimbledon match.

– Paddy’s max Free Bet is €300/£200 per customer/bet.  

– Free Bets can only be used on Wimbledon matches and unfortunately does not apply to the 2007 Mens Wimbledon Final.

Click to visit Gamebookers online sportsbook has been tarting itself up a bit – to celebrate their new look web site they’ll give you your Wimbledon bet stake back if the top 5 seed you back is knocked out before the 3rd round.

Apparently Gamebookers’ “great top-five knockout stakeback promotion makes this year’s Wimbledon as tasty a proposition as strawberries and cream“….ah, no.

– This promotion runs from 00:01hrs ET on Monday, 18th June 2007 until 23:59 hrs ET on Sunday, 8th July 2007.

– You can only qualify once for a stake refund and the max refund is US$100 / €75 / £50.

Add comment June 22nd, 2007

ML Baseball Inverted Indicator


One of the best indicators for changes in fortune in major league baseball is a team’s won-lost record in one-run games. Results in these virtual coin flips are greatly influenced by luck. Studies have shown that for years, even though TV announcers are always saying stuff like: 

* Certain teams “know” how to win close games
* Clutch ability determines who wins close games
* Bullpen quality determines who wins close games
* Champions find a way to win the close ones 

There’s a smidgen of truth to all of those, but that smidgen has been blown way out of proportion over the years because players and former players don’t acknowledge how much luck is really involved. Here are quick rebuttals to those four explanations:

* If certain teams “knew” how to win close games, they would do it every year. NOBODY wins an inordinate percentage of close games over large samples.

* If clutch ability determined who won close games, then the same teams would be winning them all the time. That doesn’t happen when you study samples of a few hundred games and more.

* Bullpens blow hot and cold just like the rest of baseball. It is true that a bullpen with a great ERA is likely to have a great record in close games. Nobody’s mastered yet how to always have a great bullpen!

* What separates champions from everyone else is the ability to win blowouts, not the ability to win close games. This has always been true in all sports. Champions will be slightly better than average in close games, but WAY better than average in blowouts. If you don’t believe me, look it up in any sport over its full history.

What that leaves us with is this:

MLB teams who currently have great records in one-run games are catching some breaks, and are about to fall back to earth. MLB teams who currently have bad records in one run games are suffering from bad luck, and have better win potential in the future than you realize.

Let’s look at some examples. Posted records were accurate heading into this past weekend.

Arizona: 17-8
LA Dodgers: 16-7
Boston: 11-6

These three teams have had their won-lost records most influenced by good fortune in close games of the 30 major league entries. Don’t get me wrong, they’re all good teams. But, they’re not quite as good as you’re thinking. All three are likely to be overpriced in terms of their true win potential in the next several weeks. Your newspaper standings are overstating their excellence, as are the TV announcers singing their praises.

Right now we’ve got a tight three-team race in the NL West. Arizona and Los Angeles have been catching breaks in close games, while the San Diego Padres haven’t (11-14 heading into the weekend). Here’s what the standings would look like if only decisions of two-runs or more were counted:

NON-NAILBITER RECORDS (thru last Friday)
San Diego 27-14
LA Dodgers: 22-21
Arizona : 21-22

Changes your perspective just a bit doesn’t it? The Dodgers and Diamondbacks are likely to fall back to earth a bit. The math says San Diego is the clear class of the division when that happens.

Let’s go to the other end of the spectrum and look at the worst one-run teams this year.

Baltimore: 6-15
Chicago Cubs: 6-13
NY Yankees: 4-10
Philadelphia: 4-10

Three teams jump out at me. The Cubs, Yankees, and Phillies are all squads who were hoping to contend for divisional championships this year. If not for one-run games, all would be doing that right now!

*The Yankees are 29-22 in non-nailbiters, which is just a few games behind what Boston is doing when you throw out their strong one-run record (31-18). The main reason we don’t have a tighter pennant race right now between the superpowers is because the Yanks have struggled in close games. There’s still plenty of time for them to turn it around and make a run at the top.

*The Cubs are 25-20 in games with bigger final margins, which is better percentage-wise than the 26-23 record posted by first place Milwaukee in that category. The Cubs WOULD be a first-place team if not for bad luck in close games.

*The Phillies are 31-22 once you throw out the nailbiter record. That’s better than the Yankees! It’s also better than the NY Mets, who are 29-24 in that category. The Phils would also be a first place team in their division if they had caught more breaks in close games.

This is why I pay so much attention to this statistic. Once you know how to handle it, you get a much better sense of how teams really stand in their divisions, and what’s likely to happen in the next several weeks when things start to regress to the mean.

History has made it clear that teams typically move back toward .500 in this stat after an abnormal stretch. Be sure you take that into account when trying to pick your daily winners!

You can read more from Scott at

Add comment June 21st, 2007


Jim Feist - top US handicapperBy Jim Feist.

Baseball is unique in that every ballpark is different in its size and field configurations. This isn’t true in any of the other sports. A football field is always 100 yards long, and both college and pro basketball courts are the same length, the only difference being the three-point line. Baseball is very different, with several small, hitter-friendly parks like Jacobs Field, Fenway Park, Coors Field, the Metrodome, Tropicana Field, the Ball Park in Arlington, and small parks in Philadelphia, Milwaukee, Houston and Cincinnati.

There are several parks with expansive outfields that are tough to hit home runs in, perfect for pitchers, such as Shea Stadium, Safeco in Seattle, Dodger Stadium, plus parks in Oakland, Detroit and San Diego. Smart organizations will construct teams around the strengths and weaknesses of their park. For instance, the Mariners and A’s have huge outfields and know the importance of speedy outfielders (Ichiro and Mark Kotsay).

Oakland’s offense has struggled, but the pitching has been dominant in their huge park, tops in ERA in the AL. That combination is why the A’s started 40-20 under the total. There is very little foul ground around first base in Fenway Park in Boston, as well as a short left field because of the Green Monster. Historically, the Red Sox haven’t paid much attention to having good defensive players at first and left field, preferring to go with strong offensive players, though that’s not the case the last few years.

The thinking was that they could get away with it for 81 home games, though on the road those weaknesses can reveal themselves, which is one reason the Red Sox are usually much stronger at home than on the road. On the way to winning the World Series in 2004, Boston was a respectable 43-38 on the road, but a sizzling 55-26 at Fenway! Last season was more of the same, with a 38-43 road record, but 48-33 at Fenway.

Strong all-around defensive and pitching teams can help diminish significant home/road differences. The biggest surprise in the American League last season was the Tigers, but it’s no surprise to find they have been constructed around pitching and defense. They are fifth in the AL in fielding. Only injuries to the bullpen have hurt the overall staff ERA, but this starting staff is still solid, as evidenced by Justin Verlander’s no hitter last week. This balanced team won 51 games both home and away last season, and in 2007 they again have a winning record at home and on the road.

The Orioles started with a winning home mark, yet started just 13-21 away from Camden Yards. The Indians and the Angels have been roughly .500 on the road, but sensational at home. Cleveland started 21-8 at Jacobs Field, while the Angels started 24-9 in Anaheim.

In the National League, the first-place Brewers have been a Jekyl-and-Hyde team, starting 22-11 at home, but with a losing road mark. The Padres have been one of the best examples ever since Petco Park opened, the toughest place to hit in baseball. San Diego has built its team around pitching and speed in the outfield, while the offense consistently ranks near the bottom in most offensive categories because of the park.

This season San Diego is playing .500 ball on the road, but their NL, scratch-out-a-run here and there style at home works to the tune of winning 20 of their first 32 home contests. They also started 19-11 under the total at home.

Finally there are the Rangers, who aren’t doing much right in what is already a lost season. Texas is last in pitching, second to last in ERA, and in the bottom five in hitting and on base percentage. They have been able to play close to .500 ball at home, a hitter-friendly park, but that poor defense and pitching is magnified away from home, where they started a miserable 9-24. Teams that can adjust and play well on the road can avoid slumps by upgrading their defense and pitching, a key to success during a 162-game marathon.

You can find a FREE sport betting pick by Jim most days on Jim’s free sports betting picks page on


Add comment June 21st, 2007

Bet365 offer £200 Free bet for new customers

OK – this is the biggest joining offer for this top ranked bookie that we’ve seen in five years !!


Royal Ascot
Royal Ascot is the pinnacle of the flat racing season, with a plethora of top-quality horses competing for vast sums of prize money.

To celebrate this prestigious five-day meeting, Bet365 are offering all new customers an exclusive £200 opening bonus which is sure to be extremely popular!

This offer is valid for UK and Irish customers only !!

Simply register with Bet365 between midnight Monday 18th June and midnight Saturday 23rd June and they will match your first bet with a free bet to the same stake (up to £200).

You can claim your free bet by entering on your bet slip the ten digit Offer Code that Bet365 sent to you via email, clicking validate and then clicking Place Bet.

With a feast of top-class racing in store over the five-day Royal meeting, and a GBP &pound200 matched bet, there really is no better time to open a Bet365 account.

Bet365 sports are iving away free cash 


Get on it now – before they change their mind !!

Add comment June 19th, 2007

Francisco Totti wins European Golden Boot

Veteren AS Roma striker Francesco Totti has won the European Golden Boot award scoring 26 league goals in Serie A

The 30-year-old Totti finished one goal ahead of Real Madrid’s Ruud van Nistelrooy despite paying the entire season with a metal pin in his ankle, a result of an injury he picked up prior to Italy winning the World Cup last summer.

The Golden Boot is decided on the number of goals scored in the domestic leagues although there is a double points system for Europe’s top leagues (Italy, Germany, Spain, England and France) which means that the title usually goes to a big superstar.

Totti scored 26 goals for 52 points, while Real Madrid striker Ruud Van Nistelrooy score 25 goals for 50 points to finish 3rd.

The top domestic scorer for 2006-07 was actually Afonso Alves who scored 34 goals for Dutch club Heerenveen this season – and Dutch goals only count for 1.5 points so he finished 2nd on 51 points.

Totti said: “A year ago everyone was writing me off, saying I was finished, but now I am a World Cup winner and top goalscorer. It was meant to be.”

Add comment June 19th, 2007

Royal Ascot Free bets and cash backs

Click to visit for more informationTop UK bookie is offering a free bet of up to GBP £50 for new customers during Royal Ascot (19th June – 23rd June inclusive).

For both new and existing account holders Betfred will also run a cashback promotion on every Royal Ascot race. This offer will pay-out each time Frankie Dettori rides the winning horse in a race at Royal Ascot 2007. Betfred will then refund losing, single stakes (win only) on the second place horse in that race.
Here are the terms and conditions for the cash back deal:

  • Losing stakes will be refunded in the form of a free bet which will be credited to the Betfred accounts bets by 2pm the following day.
  • Refunds between GBP 1 to GBP 100 (or your currency equivalent) per customer per race and applies only to races at Royal Ascot between 19th and 23rd June 2007.
  • Applies to call-centre and web bets only and Betfred Horse Racing rules apply.

Check out the “The BetFred Insider Guide to Royal Ascot 2007” here on

Click to visit nowSavvy Irish online bookie has come to the party with an “Anyone for Seconds” cash back offer on the 4.55 at Ascot. If your horse finishes second in this race, he’ll refund your losing single stake.

All week he’s running money back specials and extra place payouts on Ascot racing.

Yes – and of course you can even bet on the colour of the Queen’s hat on ladies day. Pink is 5/1, while beige or white are 6/1. Check it out on site at


Add comment June 18th, 2007

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