Lazio vs. Juventus and Pick to Win
Date:Sunday, January 22nd, 2017
Where: Italy Serie A Torino, Italy
by Keith, Professional Soccer/Football Handicapper, Predictem
Match Odds: Lazio 32/5, Juventus 1/2, Draw +333
Moneyline:Lazio +640, Juventus -200, Draw 10/3
Over/Under Best Market: NO RECOMMENDATION
Juventus enters as the reigning Serie A champion after they topped the table in their 2015/16 campaign. Juventus now plays host to fourth place Lazio who is hot on their heels. Juve holds just a one point lead over the top position with Roma trailing right behind them. Juve has 45 points, Lazio 40 respectively. Juventus recently snapped a two-game winning streak with a loss against a FIorentina team we backed against Juventus to kick off the Serie A season, many months ago. Lazio has won their previous two.
Mirroring what we have championed previously, Juventus has a great vulnerability for crafting a let-down given their expectation of victory and the juice that accompanies any wager on them. In their last six outings, the Italian kings of the football ground have been exceptional, securing four victories, one loss and one draw. These accolades were fostered against premier Italian sides, including AC Milan and Roma. Needless to say, the juice required to take back this outfit reflects a direct reaction from the public when they gaze upon the name Juventus and consider what this team has done recently. Oddsmakers and books play on this reaction and as we have implored time and time again, assess a hidden premium for any action any punter wishes to take. From a consensus perspective the money has been divided with Juventus and the Draw splitting the action 50/50.
Lazio is offered as a deceptively tantalizing secondary option. However, it is hard to fathom Lazios football club pulling off an upset of epic proportion in Torino as Juve has been solid there all season. But then again stranger things have happened. Everton absolutely shelled Manchester City in Goodison Park in the previous week as a pooch that was taking back odds greater than 3:1. In their most recent encounter at Lazios pitch, Lazio fell 1-0 but they did manage to keep the contest much closer than expected. Juventus has won their previous three against Lazio. In light of this, the books seem to be giving away a potentially huge purse if Lazio were to emerge victorious. Yet none want to even take a gander or chance. However, given Juventus dominance of the league, it may be a very risky play. However given the fact Juventus enters off a loss and Lazio is riding a hot hand, now may be the time to step in. Bear in mind had Juventus won their most recent fixture, this price may have been even friendlier.
We have always championed playing on value and when you get a team as good as Lazio for a price of nearly 7:1, you have to step in on that especially if seemingly no one wants a part of that option. As we have frequented, when markets offer lofty numbers and the public smothers it that is usually a sign that it is bait and has a low probability of hitting. However, as stated public perception views Lazio as doing the unthinkable as nearly impossible. With this being established, only one goal was scored in the previous two contests. However, the book is offering odds that are too good to be true in this scenario and thus we will stay off the OVER/UNDER markets as heavy juice is required for the most part on targeting low-scoring markets except for the UNDER 1.5 or UNDER 1. In UNDER 1.5, the number is 2.7:1 and the public has been all over this one given what has happened recently. We are not proponents of laying juice by any means and often a contrarian approach is most profitable in a sport such as soccer. Although this is likely to be a low scoring affair mirroring presiding trends, we will keep this one academic and strictly play on the upset bid being successful standing to net 6.4 units on a Lazio win.
Lazio Recent Form
W Atalanta 2-1
W Crotone 1-0
L Inter Milan 0-3
W Fiorentina 3-1
W Sampdoria 2-1
Juventus Recent Form
L Fiorentina 1-2
W Atalanta 3-2
W Bologna 3-0
D AC Milan 1-1
W Roma 1-0
Keith’s Prediction for the Game: LAZIO 32/5 (+640)