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Chelsea Signs With Coral

Chelsea fans who like a wager could be in for a treat; the west London club has agreed a sponsorship deal with bookmakers Coral. The contract, which lasts until summer 2016, names Coral as Chelsea’s official online betting partner for Europe. It’s expected to enable Chelsea fans to benefit from special offers, including better odds on the team’s matches.

Form

The last time Chelsea dropped any Premiership points was 23rd December, in an uninspiring away match at the Emirates stadium. While their December form was somewhat patchy, with losses away to Stoke and Sunderland, since Boxing Day (and prior to the West Ham match on 29th January) they’ve won every game and conceded only three goals in all competitions. A challenging February lies ahead however; for fans looking to put money on Chelsea’s upcoming fixtures, comparison sites including bookmakers.co.uk compare free bets and offer continual updates on the most favorable odds.

Fixtures

Chelsea’s next big test is a trip to the Etihad where they’ll face Premiership title favorites Manchester City, in a clash that could see the winner going top of the table. With Arsenal facing Crystal Palace at the Emirates the day before, the Monday night fixture is far from a guaranteed ticket to the top spot, though it does promise to be a thrilling encounter. Bookies are strongly favoring City to win, with current best prices at slightly worse than evens. Astute fans may be able to back Chelsea at a little better than 3/1, with around 13/2 a decent price for the draw.

Newcastle

The following weekend Chelsea hosts Newcastle for what should be a less intimidating game. Odds on Chelsea taking three points on 8th February are very short, with slightly better than 1/3 about the best you’ll find. Alan Pardew’s side lie eighth in the table, after a poor January and a mixed December. Their current position can be put down in part to an excellent run of results in November, during which they took 12 points from 12 – including a 2-0 home victory over Chelsea.

Finance

Coral and Chelsea have been tight-lipped regarding the amount of money that’s changed hands with the new sponsorship deal, but with Roman Abramovich’s generosity apparently on the wane, any new source of income will a boon for manager Jose Mourinho. The sale of the under-utilized Juan Mata to Manchester United has already funded the purchase of 21-year old Egyptian winger Mohamed Salah from FC Basel, with plenty left over.

“We are very pleased to align ourselves with such a leading betting company as Coral,” Chelsea chief exec Ron Gourlay commented.

“I hope Chelsea fans can benefit from the relationship over the next two-and-a-half years.”

Follow the Scores Report editors on Twitter @TheScoresReport. You can also follow TSR editor Gerardo Orlando @clevelandteams and @bullzeyedotcom, and you can follow TSR editor Anthony Stalter @AnthonyStalter.

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Terry Bradshaw talks Pepsi Halftime, the Super Bowl and the “Immaculate Reception”

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40 years ago this month, fifth-year NFL quarterback Terry Bradshaw came of age. The former #1 overall draft pick in 1970 had struggled in his first five regular seasons, averaging just 1,504 passing yards per season, while throwing 48 touchdowns and 81 interceptions.

But in the 1974 playoffs, something clicked. In wins over the Buffalo Bills, the Oakland Raiders, and finally, in the Super Bowl IX against the Minnesota Vikings, Bradshaw played the best football of his career, steadying himself long enough to let a powerful running game and legendary “Steel Curtain” defense dictate the tempo of games and slowly bleed out opponents.

We spoke to Terry about his progression as a quarterback, the Super Bowl and the Steelers dynasty of the 1970s.

Talk about your experience working with Pepsi on the Pepsi GRAMMY Halftime Show.

“This is just great, man. My agent called me and described the script and it sounded like so much fun, I couldn’t wait to do it. It was so much fun to make. And Deion (Sanders) and Shannon (Sharpe) were all laughing at each other. And coach Ditka was a hoot! Just four old guys out there showing off our stuff!

As a rookie, you were the first overall draft pick, and in the ensuing season, you threw a league leading 24 interceptions and split time with Terry Hanratty. What are your thoughts on that year in hindsight, after all the success?

“Well, I came up out of a small school where I was not exposed to the media, not exposed to fans, what it was like to have a bad game and the repercussions. So being booed, being ripped in the papers, this was all new to me. I had to learn how to be a professional, I had to learn how to study, I had to learn defenses. It took me a while. I wasn’t a real student of the game, I never really was one even as the years went on. I was never a guy that could sit down and just pound out tape after tape. Now, it’s a lot easier. Back then, tape would break and you’d have to glue it back together. I could sit there and my coach could tell me the coverages they would use, take all that information and put it on a piece of paper, go through all the plays and everything, and I would know what to do. I learned how to be a professional and it was brutal. Being booed and being called all those horrible things left a lasting impression on me. I never forgot it.”

Read the full interview here.

Super Bowl ticket prices are plummeting

Is anyone surprised by this? Some are reporting that ticket prices have plunged over $1,000 on the resale market in the past several days.

Would you want to sit in the cold? If you’re a Seattle fan, would you fly cross country and spend a small fortune to stay in New York City just to sit and freeze through the Super Bowl?

I wouldn’t.

Sour grapes from Bill Belichick

Gregg Doyel makes some excellent points in his recent column, and his point about Bill Belichick’s comments about Wes Welker are echoed in part by Brian Billick in the video above.

Belichick tried to call out Welker as a dirty player, but the tape and the circumstances make his claim ridiculous. The bottom line here is that Belichick outsmarted himself by letting Welker go and trying to replace him with Danny Amendola. The experiment failed miserably, and he had to watch Welker help Peyton Manning to a record-setting season, capped off by an easy win over the Patriots in the AFC Championship Game. Belichick comes across as very bitter here. Even pathetic.

Class permanent, form temporary?

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Among horse racing experts nowadays, nothing is more important than the form of each racehorse. What a horse has done in the past can be used to predict just how it may do in future races, and for this reason, when used properly, form can be an effective indicator and a clue as to how a race may unfold.

Many casual punters may choose to bet on a horse because they like the name or have a lucky number. More experienced race goers may have use basic methods of selecting a horse, such as an in-form jockey or trainer. However, the most hardcore, and often most successful, of punters will take into account a range of factors, mostly from how the horse has performed in the past, also known as its form. Form is made up by a few key statistics.

What To Look For

Class: This is an indicator of how the horse performed against other horses of a certain quality. For example, a horse may have won every race it has entered, but in a lower class of race, which may be a negative for his future chances against tougher opponents. On the other hand, a horse that has performed badly in a higher class may just need a step down in class to perform well, something which will be seen in its form. This can also affect the odds as obviously all races are looked at in isolation and you can only be as good as the opposition you face.

Distance: Along with class, another key point to note about a horse’s previous races is the distance of the race. A horse may have been well beaten in a previous race, but stayed on strongly towards the end. This may indicate that with a longer trip, the horse could perform much better.

Going: The going is a way of describing the condition of the ground in a race, for example ‘good’, ‘firm’, and ‘soft’. Some horses may have recorded their best performances on ground of a certain type, suggesting they prefer it. This can be an extremely important factor.

Course: Some horses, for whatever reason, simply perform better at certain racecourses. This can easily be seen within a horse’s form and is a favourite factor with form-readers.

Form can be an extremely important aspect of betting, and today races can come down to a clue hidden deep in the past performances of horses, and as much as things like the Coral form guide can help some days mystic meg would struggle . However, as with any of us, racehorses can simply have bad days which cannot be explained, but also, on the flip side, with a bit of luck a horse can win any given race. Due to this, form can be an excellent indicator, however, there is no accounting for improvements or good old fashioned luck, whether it be good or bad.

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