Barça 5, Betis 2, aka “The art of deception” – Barcelona Football Blog
Barca have beaten Betis five times, Messi has scored twice, Dembele looked like the player everyone has been waiting for and all is well with the world just before the team rushed for the international break. Happy moments. No. Let's start with the shit news. The tackle which earned the penalty that Griezmann wasted also […]

Barca have beaten Betis five times, Messi has scored twice, Dembele looked like the player everyone has been waiting for and all is well with the world just before the team rushed for the international break. Happy moments.

No.

Let's start with the shit news. The tackle which earned the penalty that Griezmann wasted also injured Ansu Fati. who suffered a meniscus injury. The treatment course will be discussed on Monday, but surgery is on the table. The challenge was just one of those football things, nothing malicious about it. Just a tough break for an incredible talent. He is 18 years old. The children are getting better. The question will be how long he will be away, for a team that had started to develop something resembling Fatidependencia. No estimate on how much time he will be lost, but just a blow for a young talent who had the world on a tight rope. We should all wish him good luck.

Worse. Griezmann is playing like a player without confidence, and that's a worrying thing. The penalty resulting from the Fati challenge was weak, provisional and easily parried by Claudio Bravo, who is also good enough to handle penalties. Compare the quality of that penalty to what Messi later inflicted, an explosion in the roof of the net. Griezmann has missed a trio of other great chances and looks like a player who doesn't have that last ounce of self-confidence. He works hard, and if 99% of the goals scored end up in great positions, there is no way you can blame him. Finishing is a matter of confidence, and once it gets damaged, that makes it difficult.

The biggest worry about Griezmann now is that Fati is out, his presence becomes even more crucial. He's going to have to get his mojo back - even though he never really got it at Barcelona.

Even worse. Barca's defense, especially the right side of the defense. When Nelson Semedo was the team's right-back, he was toasted for not attacking properly. He had pace, defended well (and stopped with Davies' run in the Bayern game. You know better than that.), But didn't attack, so he was crap. When he was sold in a big deal for the club, it meant Koeman had a 19-year-old kid who wasn't leaving for his Eredivisie team, and Sergi Roberto. Against Betis he played Sergi Roberto, and it is no coincidence that every serious attack has come from this side.

The quality of the odds is something easy to notice about Ter Stegen and the goals that have passed him. When he first arrived and for a while, he was able to register hits as they usually weren't gifts. He gave them a hand, a leg, a foot. Betis goals today, like so many others conceded by the defense, leave a helpless keeper. And it's not on Ter Stegen. Like it or not, Sergi Roberto has lost a step. Never the lightest foot to begin with, he is now a real handicap on that side for all against with rhythm. And there are acres of space once you get past him, because Pique has, once again, whether you like it or not, become a responsive CB like his backline mate, Lenglet. To wait to die means that… well… you die.

No one can make the right decision because they are jostling each other. On that first goal, Pique tried a weird back heel clearance because it was the only option. Lenglet was just standing and watching, for he, like the others, was out of position, a condition forced by a complete lack of rhythm and physicality. The midfield is a pasture for the cows as Busquets and De Jong are too slow to hunt anything. So, unless a striker does a lung to come back (Griezmann often does), the defense is sitting there, wide open. Ter Stegen can't save them all.

The second goal was even worse, a stray bullet which left Barca players in an almost perplexed state as Betis left for the races. Again, easy luck, put it away. Real Madrid are not a particularly good team, and they have hit three goals ahead of Barca, who beat five against Betis because this team is even more open and disorganized in defense than Barca, despite the hard work of Pellegrini.

Barça's defensive problems are global. They are structural, physical and tactical. They cannot stop an opponent's counter of any quality. One rear is not a rear, the other is a flushed headless chicken. The only reason opponents don't attack from the left is because the right is so easy. Koeman will have to find a solution for this, and quickly. Help Dest and Pjanic. A fast and mobile credit card would help a lot more. When Araujo comes back from injury it might be time to consider a change of guard down the back line. It's bad. Barca will win their Champions League group, as expected. But the first time they face a team of any quality in the current defensive state, it will be ugly.

But for fear of thinking everything was wrong, Messi as a super submarine was brilliant. He came and almost immediately helped create a goal. Then he scored a brilliant penalty. Then he marked again, an explosion that looked like an exorcism. He was creative, dynamic, and popped up in dangerous places rather than racing defense, 1v3 or 4, and was so successful in playing a game that suited his current physical condition. He's not that Messi, but now he's more than capable of being that other, equally dangerous Messi, but in different ways.

Pedri was awesome. Again. It's a constant source of amazement that a 17-year-old can be so smart in football. He is neither fast nor strong and he is about a minute long. But he uses the space so well and reads the game so well. He defends well because he understands the flow of the game and rarely has to run, able to keep the game in front of him. And he's constantly on the move, always ready to receive a pass. He opened his goal book today with a run and a slot machine that wouldn't surprise anyone. There was the ball, and there was Pedri. He scored and walked away like it was the most natural thing in the world.

Even if his motives come into play and his price tag rises to $ 25million, he's still a good deal. He is also an example of a player created in the mold of a David Silva. Not quick, not physical, but still smart on the ball, reads the game like a book and infallibly makes the right decision. And he works. He once lost a ball and chased as hard as he could to correct the mistake as if it was the most natural thing in the world. It is not.

And speaking of new discoveries, meet this version of Ousmane Dembele, the one who starts scratching the surface looking like the kind of player a club would spend 140m for. As a sub against Dinamo in midweek, he blew the match into vibrant life and almost scored a golazo. Against Betis he did, lifting a shot with such force and fury that even though he was at medium range, Bravo didn't stand a chance. He fired another rocket which resulted in handball, or he allegedly had a splint. He was smarter on the ball, taking care of possession, making the right pass, and using his physical abilities to make room so he had time to make decisions.

The fact that this is a change that has gone unnoticed is disappointing for a player many of whom seem to expect the worst. And when he does something right, the target is moved. Strong attacks, dribbling and running becomes, "Man, he's defending so poorly." He doesn't seem like he can win, but his timeline is worth remembering. Came from Dortmund, got injured, lost most of the season. I got home late, I'm injured again. Came back, got injured again, for almost another whole season. I came back from rehab, got hurt. Two surgeries and a host of other injuries. He sometimes looks like a player who hasn't fully assimilated because that is what he is.

But he begins to play his game, watching to trust his body. Against Betis, he lost a ball and pushed back, hard. The race against Dinamo where he dribbled, lost, hit a tackle and then made an explosive run is a player starting to feel it. And not a hint, a pinch or anything to stop it from continuing to grow. He won't stay in shape, simply because it is impossible over a long season for most lethal players (Messi's warning) to stay in shape. But you're hoping for a normal injury with it, a pull or something, rather than another breakdown that requires surgery. Not only does he not need it, he might not come back, psychologically. The game is becoming fun for him again, and that's something we should all want.

In addition, one must have joy, because it is usually misery and anxiety when opponents have the ball.

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This is a beginners guide to football betting, written by a beginner ! You might not know this about me, but whilst Ian is a betting spécialiste with a long history of placing bets, I am not ! I know the digitale and how to make things on it, but I don’t know a lot about football.

I do love this site though, so I wanted to learn more about betting so that I can better contribute to the conversations on it. I have been researching things for some time and thought I would write them up as a guide to football betting.

You might wonder why I didn’t ask Ian to write this guide, him being the spécialiste, the truth is I thought it would be better coming from someone picking up the ropes. Ian knows so much he might assume you know something you don’t, I don’t know anything so that can’t happen !

These are the two most common way to place bets these days so I wanted to cover them in a little detail. We don’t hide that fact that Ian prefers singles but that doesn’t help you if you don’t know the main differences.

When you bet with an accumulator, all your bets need to win in order for you to be able to claim the money. This makes it much harder to win but évidemment the reward is far greater. As a new football bettor it is very tempting to bet on accumulators because you could see your £10 stake spiral into big bucks pretty quick.

Beginners Guide to Football BettingThis is a beginners guide to football betting, written by a beginner ! You might not know this about me, but whilst Ian is a betting spécialiste with a long history of placing football bets, I am not ! I know the web and how to make things on it, but I don’t know a lot about football. I do love this site though, so I wanted to learn more about football betting so that I can better contribute to the conversations on it. I have been researching things for some time and thought I would write them up as a guide to football betting. You might wonder why I didn’t ask Ian to write this guide, him being the professionnel, the truth is I thought it would be better coming from someone picking up the ropes. Ian knows so much he might assume you know something you don’t, I don’t know anything so that can’t happen ! Something that you might benefit from is our free tipster email course. It is a free email course that takes 7 days to complete and by the end of it you should be a bit of an spécialiste ! Some Football Betting TermsI figured I would start off with some betting terms. Stake – This is the amount of money you place on a bet, in other words the amount of money you stand to lose if you don’t win. Accumulator – A football accumulator is a series of solo bets grouped together, if each of the bets comes off then the odds accumulate together. Normally when you hear of people putting a fiver on something and winning a couple of thousand it is because of accumulators. Because each bet needs to win though they can be risky. Handicap – This is a bet that is offered when one team is the clear favourite – Think Brazil vs your local old boys team ! The handicap gives a small advantage to the underdog. For example, there may be a one goal head start given to the underdog. I am going to explain Handicapping more later in this article. Half Time/Full Time – This type of bet is split into two, when you predict the winner of the first half then of the entire game. So you could predict a draw at half time but for the home team to win by full time. Banker – This is basically the closet thing to a certainty as you can get, the tipster is very sure that the bet will land if they consider it a banker. For example we give banker tips to our members. Scorecast – This is when you bet on a player to score the first goal along with predicting the acceptable score. Wincast – Very similar to a scorecast but you bet on a player to score and then predict the winner of the game. 90 Minute Betting – This is mentioned a lot when people bet on individual players ( maybe as goal scorers ) normally if the player doesn’t make an appearance the bet is called off, but if the player appears during the normal minutes of the game they are eligible for the bet. 24 Hour Rule – Most betting websites have a rule like this where if a match is postponed the bet only becomes void if the match doesn’t get played within a 24 hour period. So for example if a match was just put back 2 hours the bet would still stand. Over/Under – Overs and Unders are when you bet on the amount of goals being scored, normally it will be over or under an amount, for example over 2. 5 means if there are 3 or more goals. Under 2. 5 would be 0, 1, or 2 goals being scored. DNB – This stands for Draw No Bet. What this means is if the score is a draw you get your money back for your bet. This can be seen as a safer option but you should understand that the odds are usually lower when this is selected. Double Chance – A Double Chance bet is one where you pick a winner and if they win OR it is a draw, you win the bet. If the team you pick loses then you lose the bet. Like DNB the odds are generally lower but it is a safer bet as a result. Bankroll – how much money you have to bet with. We’ve written more about what the bankroll is. HandicapsHandicaps are something that confused the heck out of me for the longest time, so I want to spend a while looking at them in detail. This is such a common question that I have written up a guide to the Asian and European handicapping. Want to learn how to be an expert bettor for free ? JOIN OUR EMAIL COURSEAccumulators Vs SinglesThese are the two most common way to place bets these days so I wanted to cover them in a little detail. We don’t hide that fact that Ian prefers singles but that doesn’t help you if you don’t know the main differences. When you bet with an accumulator, all your bets need to win in order for you to be able to claim the money. This makes it much harder to win but bien sûr the reward is far greater. As a new bettor it is very tempting to bet on accumulators because you could see your £10 stake spiral into big bucks pretty quick. Singles on the other hand are not effected by other bets. So if I place £10 on three different matches as singles and 2 of them come in, then I make money on those two bets. The odds aren’t as good if I was to role up all my bets into an accumulator, but the odds of me walking away with some money are much higher.

The main advice here is to find what it right for you. Just because some people swear by accumulators and others swear by singles doesn’t mean you should listen to the loudest voice. Do some research, maybe put some small stakes on a few different ways and see what felt good and what had a good return on your investment.

Beginners Guide to Football BettingThis is a beginners guide to football betting, written by a beginner ! You might not know this about me, but whilst Ian is a betting spécialiste with a long history of placing bets, I am not ! I know the digitale and how to make things on it, but I don’t know a lot about football. I do love this site though, so I wanted to learn more about football betting so that I can better contribute to the conversations on it. I have been researching things for some time and thought I would write them up as a guide to betting. You might wonder why I didn’t ask Ian to write this guide, him being the professionnel, the truth is I thought it would be better coming from someone picking up the ropes. Ian knows so much he might assume you know something you don’t, I don’t know anything so that can’t happen ! Something that you might benefit from is our free tipster email course. It is a free fax course that takes sept days to complete and by the end of it you should be a bit of an expert ! Some Football Betting TermsI figured I would start off with some betting terms. Stake – This is the amount of money you place on a bet, in other words the amount of money you stand to lose if you don’t win. Accumulator – A football accumulator is a series of solo bets grouped together, if each of the bets comes off then the odds accumulate together. Normally when you hear of people putting a fiver on something and winning a couple of thousand it is because of accumulators. Because each bet needs to win though they can be risky. Handicap – This is a bet that is offered when one team is the clear favourite – Think Brazil vs your local old boys team ! The handicap gives a small advantage to the underdog. For example, there may be a one goal head start given to the underdog. I am going to explain Handicapping more later in this article. Half Time/Full Time – This type of bet is split into two, when you predict the winner of the first half then of the entire game. So you could predict a draw at half time but for the home team to win by full time. Banker – This is basically the closet thing to a certainty as you can get, the tipster is very sure that the bet will land if they consider it a banker. For example we give banker tips to our members. Scorecast – This is when you bet on a player to score the first goal along with predicting the correct score. Wincast – Very similar to a scorecast but you bet on a player to score and then predict the winner of the game. 90 Minute Betting – This is mentioned a lot when people bet on individual players ( maybe as goal scorers ) normally if the player doesn’t make an appearance the bet is called off, but if the player appears during the normal minutes of the game they are eligible for the bet. 24 Hour Rule – Most betting websites have a rule like this where if a match is postponed the bet only becomes void if the match doesn’t get played within a 24 hour period. So for example if a match was just put back 2 hours the bet would still stand. Over/Under – Overs and Unders are when you bet on the amount of goals being scored, normally it will be over or under an amount, for example over 2. 5 means if there are 3 or more goals. Under 2. 5 would be 0, 1, or 2 goals being scored. DNB – This stands for Draw No Bet. What this means is if the score is a draw you get your money back for your bet. This can be seen as a safer option but you should understand that the odds are usually lower when this is selected. Double Chance – A Double Chance bet is one where you pick a winner and if they win OR it is a draw, you win the bet. If the team you pick loses then you lose the bet. Like DNB the odds are generally lower but it is a safer bet as a result. Bankroll – how much money you have to bet with. We’ve written more about what the bankroll is. HandicapsHandicaps are something that confused the heck out of me for the longest time, so I want to spend a while looking at them in detail. This is such a common question that I have written up a guide to the Asian and European handicapping. Want to learn how to be an professionnel bettor for free ? JOIN OUR EMAIL COURSEAccumulators Vs SinglesThese are the two most common way to place bets these days so I wanted to cover them in a little detail. We don’t hide that fact that Ian prefers singles but that doesn’t help you if you don’t know the main differences. When you bet with an accumulator, all your bets need to win in order for you to be able to claim the money. This makes it much harder to win but évidemment the reward is far greater. As a new football bettor it is very tempting to bet on accumulators because you could see your £10 stake spiral into big bucks pretty quick. Singles on the other hand are not effected by other bets. So if I place £10 on three different matches as singles and 2 of them come in, then I make money on those two bets. The odds aren’t as good if I was to role up all my bets into an accumulator, but the odds of me walking away with some money are much higher. The main advice here is to find what it right for you. Just because some people swear by accumulators and others swear by singles doesn’t mean you should listen to the loudest voice. Do some research, maybe put some small stakes on a few different ways and see what felt good and what had a good return on your investment. Getting your way with the bookiesSomething you will encounter when you start football betting is a range of different online and offline bookmakers. All will have their own way of dealing with things and all will want you to work with them differently. This can seem daunting but we’ve written up a guide on what to look out for and how to state your case if you think a bookmaker has wronged you.

There are two things I have caught myself doing related to being greedy, the first is adding extra teams into an accumulator just because it will bump up my maximum payout. This is almost always a dramatiques idea ! The deuxième thing I have done is bet more money on a team than I initially was going to. You should have a plan for how much you are going to bet and stick to it.

You are not going to win every bet, if you want to become successful at betting on you need to be patient and pick the right bets for you. Never bet more than you can afford to loseBefore I place a bet I always think about the money I am going to be placing on it and think, if I were to lose this money right now would I be OK with that. If the answer is no I won’t place the bet.

They are too unpredictable, you don’t know how much effort the respective teams are putting in and reserve players may get an outing that you weren’t counting on. If the friendlies are before the start of a new season ( they often are ) players will be very aware to not pick up any injuries so might not play as hard as they normally do.

What I mean by this is that two teams can look a certain way on paper, but if one of those teams has already won the league and the other is fighting to stay in the league there is a very good chance that the team good on paper will be on auto pilot whilst the team playing to stay out of relegation is going to be fighting for their life !

If ever there was a post to comment on with your questions this would be it ! The only stupid question is the one not asked. We’re also really keen on hearing where we can improve this article, so if you still have questions or something wasn’t clear, it was because we’ve done a bad travail and we would love you to tell us how to do better. If you’re hungry for more, I can highly recommend our free email course.

Unfortunately a lot of money is wasted because people place bets without really knowing too much about what they are doing. If you know someone like that please feel free to share this with them. The social media share links are below if you’d like to share on Facebook etc.

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