The Daily Acca: A late night international friendly treble

Argentina forward Lionel Messi
Despite their embarrassment of riches in attack, Argentina struggled for goals during qualifying
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Paul Robinson turns his attentions to three international friendlies tonight as Northern Ireland and Scotland look set to be defeated. Here are his selections:

- Back Under 3.5 Goals in Argentina v Haiti @ 6/5
- Back Peru to win to nil @ 5/6
- Back Draw/Panama @ 4/1

The Acca pays approximately 19/1

Don't expect a cricket score in Argentina

Bet 1: Back Under 3.5 Goals in Argentina v Haiti @ 6/5 - KO 00:00 BST (Wed)

Argentina take the field again as they look to put their 6-1 friendly defeat to Spain behind them and get some good results ahead of their first World Cup group game against Iceland on June 16th.

I am sure that a lot of people will be thinking that Jorge Sampaoli's side will simply steamroller, Haiti, tonight, but the evidence doesn't overly back that up and Under 3.5 at odds-against is a decent bet.

During South American qualifying, the Argentines scored only 19 times in 18 fixtures, which was 13 less than Uruguay and 22 fewer than Brazil. In fact, only Bolivia had a poorer offensive record.

Of course we all know that Haiti aren't the greatest nation in the world, but it's worth noting that they beat the UAE 1-0 when last in action and they only conceded three in Colombia back in 2016.

I'd also make the case that Lionel Messi is highly doubtful to get much game time in this one, and despite plenty of top quality replacements, they do seem to struggle without him.


Scotland to be swept aside in South America

Bet 2: Back Peru to win to nil @ 5/6 - KO 02:00 BST (Wed)

Alex McLeish has played one and lost one since he took over from Gordon Strachan as Scotland manager, and at the end of the night, I expect that to be won one and lost two.

Peru came through a strong South American qualifying group to book their place in Russia as they finished above Chile to get into the play-off, where they beat New Zealand 2-0 on aggregate.

Ricardo Gareca's side are on a run of seven without defeat at home - six wins and a draw - and that includes matches against the likes of Uruguay, Colombia and Croatia.

The Scots narrowly missed out on qualifying for the World Cup and the new manager will still be in experimental mode as he looks to settle on a group of players for the Euros.

The hosts have a strong defence - especially at home - and Scotland have always struggled to put the ball in the net with regularity, so the Peru win to nil feels like the best option.


Northern Irish resistance to be broken in the second half

Bet 3: Back Draw/Panama @ 4/1 - KO 02:00 BST (Wed)

We finish in Central America for a friendly between Panama and Northern Ireland which could end up being a slow-burner before the former get the edge in the second half.

The Northern Irish continue to defy the doubters and although they didn't make it to Russia, they came mighty close. The sum of the team is greater than the individual parts and they received a huge boost when Michael O'Neill agreed to stay on as manager.

They will travel to Panama tonight to play their usual game of being tight defensively and seeing what they can sniff out on the break and via set-pieces.

Panama will be using this match as preparation for their fixtures against their two European opponents in Russia - Belgium and England - so expect them to take it very seriously.

It might take them a while to wear down Northern Ireland, but they have a fantastic record at home - currently eight unbeaten - and they have beaten Costa Rica a couple of times during that run, so they aren't a poor outfit.

2017/18 P/L (1pt each bet)

Wagered: 235pts
Returned: 206.13pts
P/L: -28.87pts

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