Tobias Gourlay’s in northern Europe to see whether reigning champs KuPS can reclaim their place at the top of the Veikkausliiga today
KuPS v Ilves
In Scotland yesterday, Rangers bossed Ross County, but not quite to the extent we needed. The hosts won 2-0 at Ibrox to leave us a goal short of our handicap target. Nevertheless, it was a profitable seven days and that’s what we’re hoping to deliver again this week before Kev returns to the chair.
We start in Finland, where today’s sole game from the top-flight Veikkausliiga brings fifth-placed Ilves to reigning champs KuPS, who are running second at the moment but – with two games in hand on leaders HJK Helsinki – will go top with a win tonight. At even money, we’re backing the hosts to grab the three points they need.
KuPS have won this fixture 4/4 times over the last couple of seasons. This term, the Canaries are W6-D0-L1 at the Savon Sanomat Areena – only top-of-the-table HJK have stopped them. The games they’ve won have been won relatively comfortably as they’ve scored 10 first-half goals across the six matches.
Ilves are higher up the 12-team table than some of those previous visitors, but their W3-D1-L4 away record is hardly the stuff of dreams. They are W3-D1-L0 against the current bottom four and have lost 4/4 visiting anyone higher than ninth. KuPS are second and the trends say they are more than likely than not to get the result they want today.