Corner Picks: Best bets, predictions, odds as Roma host Inter Milan, Chelsea go to West Ham and more

European leagues start in August and run through May. That means there are a lot of weekends of soccer action for us to bet on, and it’s hard to get through them all without a terrible week.

Last week was a terrible week for Corner Picks. Our first of the season, and hopefully the last. Every one of the column’s three individual picks lost, and aside from the Over 3.5 in Manchester City’s 2-1 win over West Ham, none of them felt close to coming through. So let’s just work under the assumption that we got all the terrible misses out of the way at the same time. It’s better to rip the band-aid off than slowly peel it. We’re past it now-time to ignore the pain and get right back to work. As usual, all odds are via Caesars Sportsbook.

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My heart and my wallet are in conflict here. As a Napoli fan, I’m thrilled that the Partenopei are atop the Serie A table this deep into the season, but I can’t help but believe Inter are making an inevitable climb toward the top. Napoli are dealing with a few significant injuries while Inter are rounding into form. This is terrible for my heart but good for my wallet since I took Inter to win the league before the season started. Inter are on an absolute tear right now. They’ve lost only one of their last 16 matches across all competitions, with 11 wins and four draws. And they’ve done it with an unrelenting attack.

Inter have scored 35 goals in those 16 matches, with an expected goals (xG) of 37.4, so it hasn’t been a fluke. They’re an absolute terror, and they’re facing a Roma team that’s been good but hasn’t maintained a hot start to the season. Roma haven’t beaten a team in the top half of Serie A since their season-opening win over Fiorentina. Other than that, the best they’ve managed is a scoreless draw against Napoli. They’ve lost their other five opportunities. I’m not going to give Roma the Bumslayer label just yet, but it’s not far off, either. The Pick: Inter (-104)

Featured Game | Roma vs. Inter Milan

West Ham vs. Chelsea, Sat. 7:30 a.m, NBCSN

Chelsea enter the weekend on top of the Premier League, while West Ham struggles to hold onto their spot in the top four. The usuals (Arsenal, Tottenham and Manchester United) have gained ground on the Hammers in recent weeks as, like Roma, they haven’t been able to carry the momentum. And it shouldn’t come as a surprise. West Ham are in European competition this year, but unlike all the other top clubs in England, they haven’t had a chance to amass the kind of squad depth you need to get through all those extra matches and still compete at the top of the league. After losing only two of their first 17 matches this season, West Ham have lost two of its last four, with only one win (2-0 over Rapid Wien).

From what I can tell, it’s a combination of the attack slowing down and the defense slipping. Neither drastically, but both just enough that it is having an impact on results. Now the Hammers are hosting Chelsea, a club that’s back to its smothering best as of late. I don’t think this match will be all that different from West Ham’s 2-1 loss to Man City last weekend. The Pick: Chelsea (-130)

Featured Game | West Ham United vs. Chelsea

Sampdoria vs. Lazio, Sun. 12 p.m, Paramount+

This might be the start of a relationship between us and the over in Lazio matches. Lazio are a club that is supposed to compete for a Champions League spot in Serie A but currently find themselves in ninth place because their defense has been horrific. Lazio have allowed 29 goals in 15 matches, with only Spezia and Salernitana — two clubs who will be lucky to avoid relegation — allowing more in Italy. Now, they’ve done it on 22.1 xG allowed, so maybe there’s some bad luck to it, or maybe Pepe Reina is 39 years old and continuing the downward trend in his skills.

Whatever the case, Lazio matches have been goal festivals because they score just as many as they allow. There was the 4-4 draw with Udinese Thursday, but Lazio allowed Napoli to put four past it a few days before that. Across all competitions, Lazio’s 20 matches have featured an average of 3.4 goals each, with 13 of them seeing at least three goals scored. Lazio might be this column’s new Leeds United. The Pick: Over 2.5 (-130)

Featured Game | Sampdoria vs. Lazio

Weekend Parlay

Last week’s parlay saved us from an 0-for-4. Let’s hope this week’s parlay is more of a cherry on top. It pays +148.

  • AC Milan (-510)
  • Bayer Leverkusen (-400)
  • Atletico Madrid (-300)
  • Juventus (-410)



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