Adkins slashed in sack race betting

IF the betting is right then Nigel Adkins could be drinking in the last-chance saloon with the Southampton manager the subject of a major gamble to be the first Premier League casualty of the 2012-13 season.

Adkins, who was cut to 5-4 in the sack race immediately after Monday’s 2-0 defeat at West Brom, is now best at 4-11 following sustained support in the lead up to their match with Swansea at St Mary’s.

It’s been billed as must-win for Adkins with QPR boss Mark Hughes (4-1) the only other manager available at shorter than 16-1 in the market. Paddy Power go 1-5 Adkins is out before 3-1 shot Hughes and Ladbrokes are 3-1 that the sack race is settled by midnight on Sunday night/Monday morning.

Saints are 4-5 with Ladbrokes to finish the weekend bottom of the table, while at the top Manchester United look to open up a decent gap on the rest when they head to Aston Villa.

Robin van Persie has made a blistering start to life as United’s main striker and the red-hot Dutchman can be backed at 5-2 with bet365 to outscore Villa, who are 5-4 in the same market.

BetVictor offer 13-8 that shot-shy Sunderland score by somebody other than Steven Fletcher at Everton today

Match in Focus

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Benfica v Juventus

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Expert verdict
The two best teams left in the Europa League meet in Lisbon and Benfica look a value punt to take a lead back to Turin. Benfica have an outstanding home record in European competition and Juventus showed with their early Champions League exit that they are not hugely comfortable on the road in hostile arenas.

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