In-play Betting Tips: Beware of sharp-starting Valencia

Only Barcelona lead Valencia in La Liga after seven matches

How to exploit Tottenham's proneness to five-minute capitulations and Valencia's love of early goals for in-play profit...

"Electric starts have fuelled Valencia’s ascent to second. They led champions Atletico Madrid 3-0 within 13 minutes in their previous fixture."

Man City v Tottenham
Saturday, 12:45
Live on BT Sport 1

Match Odds: Man City 1.51/2, Tottenham 7.413/2, The Draw 4.94/1

The memory of Tottenham's recent humiliations at the hands of Man City - being thrashed 0-6 and 1-5 in last season's encounters - is still raw, which is why the champions are overwhelming 1.51/2 favourites to defeat their top-six companions. Another factor in that price is that Spurs were also embarrassed 0-4 away by Chelsea and Liverpool last term.

However, the Londoners aren't always that vulnerable to defensive decimation; they conceded just once on each of their past two Premier League trips to Arsenal and kept a clean sheet at Everton. The key, as obvious as it sounds, is to avoid a first-five-minute giveaway.

They have leaked that early in four away league games since last November and let in 15 goals in them (an average of 3.75 per contest). If they make the same mistake again, react by investing in over 3.5 goals.

Deportivo v Valencia
Sunday, 16:00
Live on Sky Sports 5

Match Odds: Deportivo 4.67/2, Valencia 1.9210/11, The Draw 3.711/4

These two rivals and early 21st-century title winners are easy fits for the "sleeping giants" stereotype, but while Deportivo have done most of their recent snoozing while yo-yoing between the top two divisions, Valencia have largely napped in the top five. They have also shown signs of an awakening since Nuno Espirito Santo took charge in the summer, opening with five victories and two draws.

Electric starts have fuelled Valencia's ascent to second. They led champions Atletico Madrid 3-0 within 13 minutes in their previous fixture, both goals in their 1-1 draw with Real Sociedad arrived by the 36th minute, they went 2-0 up on Cordoba after 27 minutes and were 2-0 ahead in Getafe in 20 minutes. Bottom club Deportivo trailed by the half-hour mark in three of their past four matches.

It indicates that there is a Cash Out opportunity to exploit backing over 2.5 goals at 1.991/1 with a view to locking in a profit if there is a strike in the first ten minutes or two by the half-hour mark.

Inter v Napoli
Sunday, 19:45
Live on BT Sport 1

Match Odds: Inter 2.68/5, Napoli 3.052/1, The Draw 3.3512/5

This is always a captivating encounter nowadays because the two coaches - Walter Mazzarri and Rafael Benitez - are being reacquainted with former employers, and it is even more intriguing this time for the pressure that both face due to poor starts. Benitez's situation has improved thanks to successive wins, but Mazzarri is at risk owing to 1-4 and 0-3 losses before the international break.

Inter's defence has Pringles syndrome: once they flop, they can't stop. The seven goals gifted against Cagliari and Fiorentina make them seem a shambles, yet they have kept seven clean sheets in ten attempts. In every game that they were breached, the first leak occurred within ten minutes of the kick-off.

If they hold out for that long on Sunday, back them to shut Napoli out in-play. That is a 3.412/5 shot at present and unlikely to come in dramatically in that short timeframe.

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