Espanyol 1-0 Real Betis – Betting Review
A determined Espanyol boosted their survival hopes thanks to an extremely hard-fought 1-0 victory over the Champions League-chasing Real Betis.
The match became increasingly ugly and this suited the home side, especially after going ahead which they did late in the first half.
Real Betis had much more of the ball but Espanyol, well organised and never caught short at the back once ahead, prevented the visitor from turning possession into clear openings.
Espanyol didn’t have the ball much but did generate the best scoring chances including the winning goal. Fair scores 1-0 and 2-0.
Espanyol came out brightly and with a high tempo, looking immediately more hungry for the points compared to Betis.
The visitor was fortunate when the woodwork stopped Leandro Cabrera’s thumping header from a corner.
Espanyol continued to offer more threat, with Martin Braithwaite seeing his close-range effort stopped by Bravo the keeper.
Betis finally turned their lion’s share of possession into a rare opportunity before the break. Aitor Ruibal found the head of the ex-Espanyol player Borja Iglesias, but his goalbound effort was superbly stopped by Álvaro in a crucial moment in the contest.
Betis were made to rue that miss because, within a minute, Espanyol quickly broke away to score first. Braithwaite slotted a deflected cross past the keeper, giving the home side a lead they never surrendered.
Espanyol gradually sat deeper and deeper but not before Aleix Vidal’s had a goal ruled out by VAR.
The host created another big chance but with the goal beckoning, Puado was unable to make contact on a cutback when in a clear position to score.
A frustrated but pretty helpless Manuel Pellegrini rang the changes throughout the second half but no matter what he tried, Betis could not sustain momentum in the face of a fierce opponent that simply wanted to win more.
Betis were allowed to control the ball but they never carved openings where it mattered. Espanyol didn’t allow them space or chances and so they suffered little to no scares, holding on to a much-needed and deserved 1-0 victory.
Looking at the 1×2 market first, where the favourite was very much split right up until kick-off. Match winner Espanyol @ 2.80 was very marginally behind Betis in price to win.
Moving onto the Asian handicap market for this contest. The offer remained close and so the draw was offered as no bet. Espanyol -0 won @ 1.96 and with hindsight, based on how much more commitment and intensity they put in, Espanyol was the smarter option here as they never looked like losing.
Looking at the Under/Over the line and result last of all. The early money moved the goal handicap from 2.25 to 2.5, but this bullish view on the game having goals ultimately didn’t materialise. The main reason the match petered out in terms of the threat of goals was how much Espanyol defended, to the extent they focused purely on killing time when they had the ball. The Under 2.5 won at @ 1.64.