What's worth a punt this weekend?

What's worth a punt this weekend?
Damian Mullan


Damian Mullan



COLERAINE got their season up and running with an impressive 3-0 win at Portadown last Saturday.

Oran Kearney's side will hope they can back that up with another win this weekend when Glentoran visit the Showgrounds.

The Glens have started the season slowly and they are waiting for their first win of the season after opening their campaign with a 1-0 loss at Cliftonville before being held at home by Glenavon last weekend.

Regardless of how these two sides have begun their season, this is expected to be another close game.

Four of the last six meetings have been draws, including the last meeting at Ballycastle Road last December when the Bannsiders came from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 thanks to two second half goals from Aaron Jarvis.

A draw wouldn't be a disaster, but I expect Coleraine to come out on top in this one.

Kearney's men look to have got their opening day loss to Ballymena out of their system at Shamrock Park and they should make it back-to-back wins this weekend against the Irish Cup holders.

Two of the three sides with 100 per cent starts to the season meet on Friday night to get the third round of fixtures up and running.

Crusaders travel to Windsor Park hoping to inflict the first defeat on the champions who won 3-2 at Ballymena on Saturday.

Stephen Baxter's side have won both their games 1-0 and they will look to keep this a low-scoring game and frustrate their hosts who have already scored eight goals.

If the Blues get control of the game early, then Crusaders will have no choice but to discard their defensive mentality and go on the attack.

For that reason, there could be goals in this contest and over 2.5 goals would be the bet to consider.

Larne are the third side to have started the season with two wins from two and they will start as favourites when they welcome Ballymena to Inver Park.

An opening day 3-0 win at home to Dungannon was followed with a 2-1 win at Carrick Rangers on Saturday.

This could well be Larne's third game with three or more total goals scored and Tiernan Lynch will hope his side can stop a trend in recent meetings where the away side won all three meetings played last season.

If there is to be a winner, it could come at the end of an entertaining game with over 2.5 total goals my bet.

Across the water, Manchester United and Arsenal meet in a fixture that rarely disappoints.

Both sides will be disappointed with how they have started the season but this is a chance to turn their fortunes around and inflict more misery on their opponents.

There is no love lost between these two clubs although the rivalry has simmered in recent years.

Arsenal are looking to bounce back from their 1-0 loss at home to Leicester while United were held to a goalless draw at a rainy Old Trafford.

The last time there was a 0-0 draw in this fixture at the Theatre of Dreams was back in the 2008 season when Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie failed to find the net.

Before last weekend's fixtures, both teams to score had paid out in United's opening four Premier League games and Arsenal's previous three.

Clean sheets have been an issue for both sides with just one each so far this campaign which makes BTTS a bet worth looking at this time.

Suggested bets:
Coleraine to beat Glentoran
Over 2.5 goals between Linfield and Crusaders
Over 2.5 goals between Larne and Ballymena
Both Manchester United and Arsenal to score.

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