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  1. Kosovo - Bulgaria Kosovo to win @ 2.55 Kosovo are playing very enthusiastically in front of their emphatic crowd. The stadium is full no matter if they play Spain or San Marino. They are flying high after securing a playoff spot for EURO 2020 by winning their Nations League group. They almost beat Denmark in a friendly last week but conceded a goal in the final minutes. They are very motivated for another positive result tonight. The opposition provides perfect opportunity for that. Bulgaria are not playing convincing football at the moment. They drew at home to Montenegro on Friday mostly thanks to a huge refereeing mistake which gave them a penalty that never existed. They entered the match with injury problems which were exacerbated after Chochev got a horrific injury that will leave him out of action for at least six months. In addition, Bulgaria are a weak away team, they often crumble under pressure in games with huge significance like today’s one, and they don’t handle euphoric fan support for the other team very well. All of the above leads to a shrewd bet on odds of 2.55 on Kosovo to win with a 6/10 confidence level. Portugal - Serbia BTTS @ 2.10 Both teams have immense talent in attack. Portugal are the reigning European Champions and were very unlucky not to win versus Ukraine in Matchday 1. Cristiano Ronaldo and Co will be motivated to make up for this with a victory today. Serbia are also a great team with the likes of Tadic, Mitrovic and Milinkovic-Savic in front. They demonstrated their quality even with their second unit in a friendly at Germany last week which ended 1:1. Both teams are in a good form and have guaranteed playoff spots for the final phase of the competition. A bet on both teams to score at these odds has value and I will jump on it with 6/10 betting units.
  2. Kazakhstan v Russia After annihilating Scotland 3:0 a few days ago, the Kazakhs’ confidence will be sky-high. It’s a rare occasion for the home crowd to see a victory in a competitive match. They will try to carry the momentum into their second game and take advantage of the fixture list which enabled them to start with two straight home games. However, their last two matches against Russia finished with 0:3 losses. After reaching the quarterfinals of the World Cup playing at home, Russia have been on a downward trend. They couldn’t win their Nations League group, and they lost their first qualifier away to the absolute favorite Belgium on Thursday. They have to bounce back today and are indeed the better team, but I’ll back the draw with minimum stake at average odds of 3.40 due to Kazakhstan’s performance against Scotland. Hungary v Croatia Another draw with minimum stake can be attempted as a bet on Hungary v Croatia. Hungary have two faces – terrible away and almost flawless at home. They’ve won 6 of the last 7 competitive games at their stadium. After losing their match from Matchday 1 away to Slovakia, their back is against the wall to perform today. Croatia, on their behalf, don’t look like the same team who won silver medals at the World Cup. They barely managed to beat Azerbaijan at home on Thursday, and today’s game is, at least on paper, much harder. Good news for the Croats is the return in the squad of key team members such as Rebic, Brozovic and Lovren. Their expected problems are at the back – 4 of the 5 players at the back (goalkeeper + defense) who were heroes in Russia last year, won’t be able to play. This was hinted at on Thursday when Azerbaijan scored a goal that was definitely avoidable by more careful defending. At least the goal was beautiful. The draw is priced at 3.75 and in my opinion a small stake on that pick is worth it. Slovenia v North Macedonia Slovenia are priced at 1.85 to take care of North Macedonia at home. The Slovenians won a point away to Israel, which isn’t perfect for them but also isn’t terrible. Backing that draw up with three points at home tonight is vital. They have more quality than their recent results show. Slovenia couldn’t get a single win in six games in the Nations League, getting relegated to the last Division D. However, all of their losses were with one goal difference. After they started with 0 points from 3 games, they made a coaching change which improved their performances marginally. Their last 4 games have finished in 1:1 draws. Today’s the perfect opportunity for them to finally win. North Macedonia are in a good period and won their Nations League group, securing at least a playoff spot for EURO 2020. However, the quality of their opponents in Division D was weak and can’t be compared to the higher divisions. They lost 4:0 away to Armenia (who lost 0:1 at the same stadium to Gibraltar). North Macedonia are much better in front of their own fans than away. The recent H2H record favors the Macedonians, but all streaks come to an end. Slovenia know that they are in the easiest EURO 2020 Qualifiers group and that if they don’t win today, it will most probably cost them their chances to qualify. I am on a home win on average odds of 1.85 with 5/5 confidence. Netherlands v Germany A football classic is also on today’s schedule – Netherlands host Germany. The same fixtures was a part of the Nations League several months ago, and The Oranje were comfortable 3:0 winners. I am backing them again tonight. Both teams are in a restructuring process, but at the two different spectrums of that process. Netherlands missed the last two major international tournaments and made big changes to their squad. After more than half a decade of mediocre performances and results, they finally resemble the formidable force they have always been in European football history, reaching the final stages of World Cups and European Championships regularly. Germany, on the other hand, are at the very beginning of their restructuring after the terrible 2018 they had. After getting knocked out in the group stage as defending champions at the World Cup, they also finished last in the Nations League group, getting relegated to Division B. The coach and the players are highly criticized from the local press and fans. Three remarkable players from their successful 2014 World Cup campaign were removed from the squad – Jérôme Boateng, Mats Hummels and Thomas Müller. Fresh young faces constitute the German team now, but they need time to gel. That was evident on Wednesday in the draw with Serbia in a friendly match. An away game at the Netherlands is not the best game to go next to. Home win with 3/5 units on average odds of 2.40 seem like a reasonable bet.
  3. Andorra v Iceland Iceland have gone a full year without a win, having played 15 games in the process (6 draws and 9 defeats). They are really struggling and will be expected to turn their fortunes against one of the football “minnows” in Europe. However, Andorra aren’t taking it easy at home lately, drawing all their three home games in the Nations League. In the last World Cup qualifying cycle they even managed to beat Hungary. Hence, it’s highly likely that if Iceland fail to score early in the game, they may feel the pressure of needing to win at all costs which can backfire. In addition, bookmakers expect a low-scoring game. I’ll proceed with a wager on Andorra (+2) Handicap Result at odds of 2.00 (Evens), meaning Andorra mustn't lose the game with more than one goal. Albania v Turkey I think the Albanians are underestimated in this group compared to Iceland and Turkey. I am taking a punt on Albania to finish top two of their group at odds of 15.0, and will also try 1 DNB today vs Turkey at odds of 2.62, both with small stakes.
  4. Group F Outright Bet I am backing Sweden to finish in the top two of their group at 1.90. The clear favorite for the first place in this group is Spain, leaving Sweden, Norway and Romania to battle it out for the second place. Based on recent performances, Sweden are clearly the best team of that bunch. They are quarterfinalists from the most recent World Cup last year. They also won their group in the Nations League, manhandling Russia comfortably, which themselves played in a World Cup quarterfinal. Norway and Romania played lower quality of football over the autumn, and they were a part of the weaker Division C in the Nations League. The Norwegians in particular have a guaranteed playoff spot, so they are expected to play a little more carelessly so to speak, as they know they will have a second chance to qualify for the UEFA Euro 2020 Championships final stage. Matchday 1 this week sees Sweden play at home to Romania and Norway play away to the Spaniards. Assuming the Norwegians will lose that game, if Sweden manage to beat Romania at home, they will put a firm hand on that top two finish from the beginning. I expect these odds of 1.90 to decrease after the first round of fixtures, so that price is good value before the qualifying competition gets underway.
  5. With regards to Kazakhstan v Scotland, I am backing the draw. In addition to what @StevieDay1983 has said about the game, here are my main arguments why: The huge time zone difference of 6 hours. Despite the strategy the management of the Scotland national team has devised, it won't be easy for the players to perform at their optimal level. Key players missing the game due to injury, retirement or precaution. The game will be played on artificial grass. Despite being in the bottom section of European football, Kazakhstan are not easy to beat at their ground. They made a coaching change earlier this year which may bring temporary momentum into their players. I sense complacency among Scotland's staff A flutter on the draw at average odds of 23/10 may be worth it.