ANALYSISBETTING

Solace’s Weekend Draw Selections

The search for draws never ends for Solace Chukwu
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Every week, we look across Europe’s top five leagues in search of draws.

Well, last weekend was pretty rotten, wasn’t it? For the first time, we got all our draw picks wrong.

There were two seven-goal thrillers in the mix, so you were at least entertained. Cold comfort, I know. Let’s do better this weekend. I know we can.

Remember: every tip contained here is a second opinion from a complete stranger online. Ultimately, trust your discretion in selecting which picks to go with.

Click here to see expert prediction for weekend games

Reims v Metz (X at 3.05)

Metz hopes to return to winning ways when they face Reims

A recent run of difficult fixtures has seen Metz lose a bit of ground in their push for European football. A third of their total losses so far this season have come within the last five league matches. 

On the one hand, you worry about their form, but on the other, it paints quite the picture of how well Frederic Antonetti has done with this squad.

They travel to face Reims, the draw kings of Ligue 1 this weekend. Their hosts have not lost in eight league matches, but of that run, only two – against Nantes and Dijon, both in the relegation zone – have been wins. That makes it difficult for me to reckon with them being the bookies’ favourite here.

They have recently drawn against Rennes, Nice, and Montpelier, all sides just above Metz, and I think they will draw here yet again.

If you need further convincing, half (7 out of 14) of the meetings between these sides in recent history have ended in stalemate.

Union Berlin v Stuttgart (X at 3.40)

Union Berlin needs to pick up if they want to stay in the top ten of the table

Union Berlin was never going to last the pace in their quest for European football, but no one is going to call them fools for dreaming.

An upper mid-table finish would still be more than respectable for the capital side, but they will need to arrest a mini-slump if they don’t want to slip into Page 2 of the Bundesliga table.

The Pellegrino Matarazzo’s side is a ton of fun on their day and has earned more than half of their current points away from home.

They have also overcome a bit of tough run quite impressively, and I fancy them to grab something here.

However, Union Berlin is tough enough to avoid unnecessary defeat, so a draw seems the logical pick. Oh, and the last three meetings between these clubs (in all competitions) have been a draw.

Cagliari v Parma (X at 3.45)

Cagliari has not lost in any of their last four meetings with Parma

Down to the Serie A relegation zone. Cagliari and Parma are two very troubled sides that seem to be circling the drain.

Parma has been thereabouts for much of the season, but Cagliari’s awful run of results (two wins from 16 games in 2021) have seen them sucked in as well.

Sadly, based on the stats, we cannot offer much hope to either side this weekend. No team has drawn more games away from home than Parma this term, and while Cagliari has not lost in any of their last four meetings with Roberto D’Aversa’s side, the last two encounters ended in a deadlock. Cagliari has also not won in four games.

Their porous defence may well make for some goal scoring action, but results-wise, this seems a draw to me.

Levante v Villarreal (X at 3.40)

Villarreal needs a win run if they want to move up the table

Finally, we go to Ciudad de Valencia, where two of La Liga’s most prolific “drawers” meet.

Villarreal was riding high earlier in the season, but their inability to turn draws into wins has eventually caught up with them.

Unai Emery’s side is down in the seventh position, and they need the Europa League to have a realistic shot at qualifying for the Champions League next season.

Last time out, Villarreal somehow contrived to lose at home following their Europa League exertions in faraway Zagreb, and I fancy them to stumble here again.

Levante has only lost three times at home this season, but no team in the league has drawn more games on their own pitch, so that’s how I think this will pan out too.