Is it good to lay away?

There’s a theory, prevalent amongst the forums of betting exchanges such as Betfair, that the sure-fire way to football fortune is to lay odds-on favourites away from home. Well, this weekend is a good chance to put that theory to the test.

Is it good to lay away?

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January 20th, 2012

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The stats support the theory, given that just 24% of Premier League games end with an away win, compared with 47% that end with a home victory. That makes the Premier League the worst league for travelling sides of all of the top 15 UEFA-ranked leagues.

This weekend is particularly interesting because the fixtures include more banana skins than a Del Monte warehouse, with Chelsea and Liverpool both under the microscope.

Chelsea are first up in the televised 12:45 kick-off for their trip to Norwich, a side very much in form in recent weeks.

The Canaries sit ninth in the league, thanks in no small part to a run of three wins and a draw in their last four outings. Since December, they’ve lost just twice – those being defeats to Man City and Tottenham, so no disgrace there.

Chelsea have picked up results of late, but the manner in which they’ve done it remains unconvincing. With a relatively shot-shy squad, deprived of Drogba and Kalou because of the African Nations Cup, the 8/13 looks a tempting lay.

The other game to test the theory against is the Saturday evening clash between Bolton and Liverpool.

On the face of it, Liverpool should make light work of a struggling Bolton side that looks destined for the Championship.

But let’s not be so hasty. Liverpool, after all, aren’t exactly setting the world on fire and have just one road win in the league since the start of December – they’ve dropped points at Wigan, Man City and Fulham in the meantime.

So on that basis, you can make the case that odds-on favouritism isn’t fully justified. We’d expect an away win but a 4/6 price is good enough for us to lay at a small liability.

On Sunday, Sky Sports get all giddy and excited with one of their Super Dooper Sunday weekends (where a Sunday is even more super than normal), as Man City vs Tottenham precedes Arsenal vs Man Utd. A draw double on those can be had at 12.75 with Bet Victor (that’s Victor Chandler in old money).

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