Scouring the Sunday Soccer Schedule

Once again we’ve been scouring the Sunday fixture list and have picked out a number of appealing bets.

Any chance to back Watford at odds against to win an English Championship home game this term should be grasped with both hands since the Hornets look like the division’s class act.

Because top-of-the-table Nottingham Forest is the visitor to Vicarage Road on Sunday, UK bookmakers Bet365 and BetVictor are waving big odds of around 2.20 in the face of punters who want to back Watford to win the clash of two unbeaten English Championship sides.

Nottingham Forest has won its first three league matches of a season for the first time since 2006 and Billy Davies, who holds the record for English Football League Manager of the Month awards, is a terrific manager whom the Tricky Trees were stupid to sack in 2011 but smart to rehire in 2013.

The two-time European champion will be in the promotion mix throughout the English Championship competition and it is impossible to crab its start to the season. Nottingham Forest has beaten Huddersfield 1-0 at home, Blackburn 1-0 away and Bolton 3-0 at home, as well as eliminating fourth tier Hartlepool from the English Capital One Cup.

But Watford has been equally impressive, beating Birmingham 1-0 in England’s Second City, thrashing Bournemouth 6-1 in its only home start and coming back from the dead to draw 3-3 with Reading. Diego Fabbrini scored Watford’s last-gasp equaliser against Reading and the Italy international has lived up to his reputation since joining the Hornets from Udinese, one of Watford’s sister teams on the continent.

Watford would be playing English Premier League football had it made a half-decent start to last term and, while Hornets boss Gianfranco Zola could not persuade Matej Vydra to stick around for another year – Vydra has moved to West Bromwich – there is a distinct possibility that this Watford side could end up being one of the best to grace England’s second tier.

While Davies did not return to Nottingham Forest until after the Tricky Trees had faced Watford home and away last season it is still worth noting the results of those two English Championship games. Watford won 2-0 at Vicarage Road and followed up that victory with a 3-0 win at the City Ground.

Staying in the English Championship, Wigan simply has too many excellent players at this level not to be winning shortly so back the Latics at odds of around 1.83 to get three points from its home match against a Middlesbrough team that, in spite of its recent road win at Charlton, remains one of the least convincing away performers.

In a similar vein, Paris Saint-Germain’s poor results will not continue and it should register its first win of the French Ligue Un tournament by beating Nantes away from home at odds of around 1.60. Paris Saint-Germain was incredibly unlucky not to smash Ajaccio last weekend when they face to face with an inspired goalkeeper. Paris Saint-Germain had to settle for a 1-1 draw because Ajaccio custodian Guillermo Ochoa stopped all bar one of the champion’s 15 shots on target. Ajaccio scored with their only worthwhile effort.

Nantes is back in French Ligue Un after gaining promotion last term. Nantes, which is the weakest of the three sides that came up, could not hold out Lorient last weekend after finding itself in front courtesy of an early own goal. Paris Saint-Germain’s remodelled attack is going to click sooner rather than later. It almost happened in round three. It could happen in round three. The result could get messy.

Finally, Betis beat Celta home and away in the Spanish La Liga last term and the former’s early performances have been superior to that of the latter. Therefore, back Betis at odds of around 1.87 to accrue another three points at the expense of Celta. Betis was within a handful of minutes of forcing a 1-1 draw versus Real Madrid in the Spanish capital city last weekend and followed up that a 2-1 away defeat of Jablonec in the UEFA Europa League. Celta kicked off its Spanish La Liga campaign by drawing 2-2 at home to Espanyol.

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