Saturday, 1 June 2013

Review of football slots game Shoot

When the football season comes to an end, online casino websites report that they see a sudden increase in their customer base.

Hardly surprising; all those football bettors need something to while away the time until next season. That is also a possible reason why so many football themed slots games have appeared over recent years.

Slots are the most popular online casino games, football is the most popular sport, so why not combine the two? That is precisely what Microgaming did when they developed the highly entertaining football slot called Shoot, a full 5 reel 50 pay-liner. The name Shoot is derived from the football magazine with that name and some of the game’s features are based on aspects of the magazine.

Just as highly collectable old editions of Shoot the magazine show footballers from as long ago as the 1960s, so too does the slots game, which gives it a great retro feel. The regular spin top prize is 50,000 coins and if you spin three scatter symbols you trigger the bonus round. This is a game called Trade ‘Em Bonus in which you are shown 12 cards and you choose four of them. Each card reveals a prize which can be an entry to the Magazine Bonus game or the Free Spins bonus. In the Magazine Bonus game you are shown 12 Shoot magazines and you select four of them which might reveal prizes.

There is also a free spins bonus where you can receive from 10 to 35 free spins. These have a multiplayer applied to your winnings and there is a chance to make some very good wins if you are lucky.

Shoot is not a slot game for everyone but there are many choices at your average online casino. If was developed for football fans and is a favourite amongst them, but if football is not your scene then you are unlikely to enjoy playing this slot which is entirely focussed on the sport.

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Neymar must still Impress at Conf. Cup

News that Neymar has agreed in principle to join Barcelona after the 2013 Confederations Cup this summer means even more pressure is on the striker to perform in a Brazil shirt.

Neymar reportedly agreed to join Barcelona last Wednesday after much resistance, with many surprised sports betting fans assuming he would stay in South America until after the 2014 World Cup before transferring to Europe.

Well, a year early and with Barcelona in slight dire straights following a disappointing Champions League campaign the move has gone through – but now Neymar must show his worth for his national side.

Brazil kick off this summer’s eight-team tournament on 15 June and the majority of Confederations Cup punters expect the Samba Boys to make the final come the end of the month.

Neymar is part of a strong attacking unit that also includes Chelsea’s Oscar, Hulk of Zenit and Fred, who has recently found good form at Brazilian club side Fluminense.

Yet it is the small 21-year-old that is expected to get the goals this summer and the eyes of the world will be watching him now he’s joined Barcelona.

Neymar has impressed many over his blossoming career. Three years ago he was not part of the Brazil World Cup side that travelled to South Africa but since then he’s become the main forward outlet of the team, playing every game of the 2012 Olympics last summer and bagging three goals.

What most inspired the watching fans over that two-week tournament was the player’s confidence to go for goal. Neymar forced 26 shots in just six games, proving why he is such an exciting player to watch and why Brazilian fans expect so much from him.

Well, this summer he must replicate that form and justify why Barcelona are set to spend millions bringing him to Spain. The youngster has handled pressure before but this is a whole new ball game.

Neymar may get his chance on Sunday against England. Hodgson's men need to keep the Samba Boys guessing. Visit the Betfair website for more Confederations Cup Tips.

Monday, 20 May 2013

Allardyce says Carroll Signing is Main Priority

West Ham boss Sam Allardyce says the club will do all they can to sign Andy Carroll as he believes the striker is key to their chances of moving to the next level.

The Hammers finished off their season in fine style on Sunday, with skipper Kevin Nolan netting a hat-trick as they beat relegated Reading 4-2 at Upton Park, to confirm their position in the top half of the table.

Having been promoted via the play-offs last season, it’s been a highly successful campaign for the East Londoners and with Allardyce recently signing a new two-year contract, the future certainly looks bright for West Ham.

However, the boss is certainly not looking to rest on his laurels and knows he has to continue to build his squad if they are to develop.

Key to their chances will be keeping Carroll, who after arriving on loan from Liverpool last summer, has established himself as a key member of the starting line-up.

The two clubs are currently locked in negotiations over a permanent deal, with the player’s wages thought to be one of the main stumbling blocks.

Allardyce knows just how important the 24-year-old's signing could be to his side’s chances and has made hammering out a deal for the player his main priority for the summer.

"If we can start with Andy Carroll that would be a great achievement for us as he can only get better and better," the experienced boss said. "Then we build around that in terms of how we want to improve next year, with better quality. It is our target to make it a permanent situation."

"Hopefully we can get somewhere in the near future to do that.  It’s our main priority.  There are negotiations between the club and Liverpool.”

Bet on Premier League on the Bet365 website for all the latest picks for England's top division. Did you know that you can now listen to free live football commentary courtesy of Bet365?

Wenger Not Going Anywhere

With the managerial merry-go-round going on at full speed in the Premier League at the moment, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has insisted he has no plans to leave the Emirates any time soon.

The Frenchman is now by far the longest standing manager in the English top flight, having seen Manchester United’s Sir Alex Ferguson decide he will retire at the end of the season after over 26 years at the helm at Old Trafford.

With Everton’s David Moyes filling the void at the Theatre of Dreams and Chelsea looking set to say farewell to Europa League winner, Rafa Benitez, this summer, stability is something Arsenal can enjoy going into next season.

Amid rumours of a possible move to Real Madrid or Paris Saint-Germain this summer, Wenger has been keen to play down any speculation regarding his future in north London. However, some pundits do believe that he still needs to find Arsenal's missing jigsaw pieces.

He said: "The rumours about my future? It does not bother me, it is part of the interest of the footballing public. You have to live with it and try to educate people.

"There will undoubtedly be a rotation of coaches, with a game of musical chairs. It concerns a lot of people but it is a rotation with respect to big-name coaches, so no matter where they go, there will always be great coaches everywhere."

It has been well documented that Arsenal have waited a long time for silverware, having not lifted a trophy since winning the FA Cup back in 2005, much to the chagrin of fans who bet sports.

However, Wenger still seems to have the hunger to win titles and the Frenchman is clearly very determined to do that with the Gunners.

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Charting Chelsea’s Long Season

Chelsea’s Europa League title success is just reward for a gruelling season that saw a surprise managerial change-around midway through the campaign and the club play in eight different competitions.

As we near the final day of the Premier League season, Blues fans can breathe a sigh of relief. They have won a trophy, qualified for the Champions League, and miraculously kept a squad together over 69 competitive fixtures.

Their only major downfall was in the Champions League, where Roberto Di Matteo failed to inspire the same guile and courage that steered the Blues to the final just a few months earlier, despite heavy support in the odds on Champions League.

Chelsea crashed out of a group they really should have won, coming third behind Juventus and Shakhtar Donetsk. But Wednesday’s Europa triumph was adequate silver lining for that dark cloud on their season and at least they’ve earned a trophy – unlike Arsenal, Spurs, Manchester City, and Liverpool.

In the Premier League, the remit was to stay in the title race but Manchester United’s dominance meant that was impossible, so Rafael Benitez gets a B+ for finishing third (assuming they win on Sunday).

The League Cup was by no means a priority yet they still made the semi-finals: an achievement replicated in the FA Cup, where they came up against a City side desperate to make something of their own season.

Remember, Chelsea also had a jet-lagging trip to Japan for the FIFA Club World Cup, which they lost in the final, suffered defeat in the UEFA Super Cup and lost a start-of-season Community Shield clash with City.

When the final whistle blows at Stamford Bridge this weekend, the Blues will have completed their 69th game of the season, almost fitting two Premier League campaigns into one.

The fact they continued to battle hard against Benfica right to the end is a credit to the coaching staff, Benitez, and the players themselves, who proved last season’s success was no fluke and that hard work really does pay off in the end.

Check out the End of Season Report on Betfair for more insight into the Blues’ most recent campaign.

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Champions Across Europe

Last weekend saw a number of European football clubs crowned champions of their domestic leagues, securing historic titles and Champions League football for next season.

While the English and German title races ended long ago, there was still much to play for across the continent heading into the weekend. Here is a brief round-up of who those champions are:

Serie A – Juventus
It wasn’t the prettiest of games but Juventus did enough against Palermo to scrape to a 29th Italian title and defend the trophy won last season. Arturo Vidal’s disputed penalty conversion was enough to see off Palermo and, with little competition for the Serie A title this season, fans placing a bet on football saw few rivals to Juve in the Italian league.

Juventus now have 11 more Italian league titles than any other club and look set to strengthen this summer.

Eredivisie – Ajax
A third successive Dutch title was secured at the weekend as Ajax punished Willem II Tilburg 5-0 to stay four points clear of PSV with one game remaining. In winning the title, boss, Frank de Boer, becomes the first manager to claim three successive Dutch championships.

It was Ajax’s 32nd Eredivisie success and PSV need to find a gem or two in their youth set-up to challenge next season.

Super Lig – Galatasaray
Boasting Didier Drogba, Wesley Sneijder, and Felipe Melo in their ranks, Galatasaray surprised few football betting news pundits by winning the Turkish league title; a 4-2 victory over Sivasspor in Istanbul earned them a 19th domestic championship.

Galatasaray impressed in the Champions League this season but are seeded in the third pot for the group stage in 2013/14, meaning they are likely to concentrate on winning the Super Lig again next term.

Superliga – FC Copenhagen
Copenhagen celebrated a 10th league title on Sunday despite their 0-0 draw with city rivals, Br√łndby. It was their third successive draw as they limped over the line with three games to spare after a spirited chase from FC Nordsj√¶lland added false excitement to this foregone conclusion.

Copenhagen qualify for the Champions League group stage next season and, while unlikely to qualify out of their group, are a good outside shout to push far in the Europa League.

Friday, 26 April 2013

Why United's Title Procession is bad news for Wigan

Manchester United were able to reclaim the Premier League title this season with the minimum of fuss, easily seeing off the underwhelming challenge from last year's champions, Manchester City.

It has been a disappointing campaign in general for City, but they have a chance to redeem themselves somewhat when they tackle unfancied Wigan in the FA Cup final - and the Latics must surely be bracing themselves for an onslaught from a side desperate to prove they have what it takes to bounce back from this season's woes.

City were expected to build on last season's dramatic final-day league triumph by at least pushing United all the way for the top domestic prize this year, but their bid to defend the title fell way short and their campaign has petered out dismally in recent weeks.

Boss, Roberto Mancini, has bemoaned a lack of major summer signings as the main reason why their season has largely failed and, in particular, United being able to land Robin van Persie from Arsenal ahead of them, proved pivotal in the end.

However, City have shown glimpses of their old selves and their recent performances in wins over United at Old Trafford and against Chelsea in the Cup semi-final proved, on their day, they remain an outstanding side with some truly world-class talent in their ranks.

And, considering how the season has gone so far, that is why the Latics should be worried ahead of the Wembley showdown on May 11.

City simply must bring the FA Cup back to the Etihad for the second time in three years to salvage something from a season that has failed to live up to expectations.

Their woeful Champions League campaign, when they again failed to get past the group stage, coupled with their league disappointment, means an unthinkable defeat against huge outsiders in the FA Cup odds, Wigan, would render 2012-13 as a total disaster.

Wigan can offer some resistance in the final but, with City desperate to finish a poor season on a high, a convincing triumph for Roberto Mancini's men is expected.

Monday, 22 April 2013

Moyes doubts top four chances

Everton manager David Moyes has admitted his side’s chances of finishing in the top four are now all but over following Saturday’s defeat to Sunderland.
After a brilliant start to the campaign, the Toffees have struggled for results in recent months and the defeat at the Stadium of Light means they have now won just once in their last four league outings.
The defeat on Wearside has left them sitting sixth in the table, six points behind Chelsea with just four games left and with both Liverpool and the Blues still to come, it now looks highly unlikely that they will finish in the top four.
This will be even more disappointing to Toffees fans as with him yet to sign a new contract, it looks like this could be the final year with Moyes at the helm, while the likes of Marouane Fellaini and Leighton Baines being rumoured to be on their way out of Goodison Park in the summer.
The Scot has been on Merseyside since 2002 and his achievements in turning Everton from relegation candidates to European contenders have not gone unnoticed, with him recently being linked with moves to both Chelsea and Schalke.
The 49-year-old is yet to make a decision on his career, but admits his side’s chances of finishing in the top four this time around are probably now all but over.
"I don't think we can qualify now," Moyes admitted. "We had to keep winning and keep on going, and even if we did keep on winning we would still have been outsiders.
"This defeat means we have to put an end to all that.
"We can just keep winning games and who knows. We will try and finish in a Europa League position," he added.
Don’t forget to head over to bet365 for all the latest Premier League betting news odds, tips, advice and expert opinion, as well as plenty of promotions, including their latest in-play bet offer.

Friday, 12 April 2013

United Continue FFP Preparation Strategy

Manchester United have joined rivals, Arsenal, in preparing for new Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations after agreeing a deal to sell the naming rights of their training ground for a whopping £120m.

The deal breaks down to a £15m, eight-year agreement with current shirt sponsor AON to display the insurance firm’s name on training kits, pre-season tour campaigns and the name of United’s Carrington training facility.

For the pundits on Betfair, the move is seen as a clear effort to increase revenue streams before FFP kicks in, for United may struggle to live within their means unless more income is generated through sponsorship and merchandising.

Much like Arsenal, the club lives off its own back and is aware the FFP rules could cut their spending if the books aren’t balanced. The Gunners run a tight ship, have paid off the cost of their £390m Emirates Stadium and, with over £3m of revenue coming in each home game, they are starting to make money in football.

They recently signed a new £150m sponsorship agreement with Emirates until 2019 – bagging them a cool £30m a year from this one source alone.

That kind of deal is what United have also begun to strike and with the fans reluctant to see Old Trafford change its name, Carrington is the next best thing.

Although United’s debt is theoretically safe – locked as it is with current owners, the Glazers – any addition to the club’s income makes strong financial sense and selling rights to training facilities and kits is an impressive move.

They were the first club to sell training kit sponsorship in August 2011 when they signed a contract with DHL worth £40m for the privilege and with Chevrolet primed to begin its main shirt sponsorship in 2014 United’s income is only set to increase.

Unlike Premier League rivals, Manchester City and Chelsea – who may struggle to cope with FFP when their owners cannot simply pump money into the club – United and Arsenal are doing the right thing in selling their assets for all they’re worth.

Monday, 8 April 2013

Rodgers Tips Suarez for Top Award

Liverpool boss, Brendan Rodgers, believes that Luis Suarez’s form this season has been good enough to see him earn the PFA Player of the Year award.

The Uruguayan has once again been pivotal for Liverpool this term and currently tops the Premier League’s scoring charts heading into the final weeks of the season.

His achievements have been made even more remarkable by the fact that his side have occasionally struggled this campaign and now look unlikely to finish the campaign in those all-important top four places.

This has led to further speculation among fans placing a bet on Premier League that he may be on the move in the summer, with Bayern Munich thought to be interested.

Being crowned the league’s best player would be a fitting end to his time at Anfield for a player who, despite occasionally finding himself in hot water, has always given everything for the Reds’ cause.

Gareth Bale is currently the favourite in the sports betting news to land the prize on April 28th but Rodgers believes Suarez should win the vote due to his outstanding contribution throughout the campaign. 

"He has a real determination and commitment to do well for Liverpool and that side of his game certainly puts him up there with the very best I've worked with,” he told Yahoo. 

"His league goals alone should put him in with a great shout but you also need to look at his consistency throughout the season that makes him arguably the best player. He will certainly be in the reckoning.

"There are other contenders of course; players like Gareth Bale have been outstanding for Tottenham for example, but I think that Luis' consistency and the impact he has had for us this season means that he would be my candidate to win.”