Odd vs Aalesund by 20Legend
Odd continues their impressive form in Tippeligaen and is showing that they are the only candidates that can challenge Rosenborg for the title. Odd is currently 2nd on the table with 30 points after a solid total of 9-3-2 this season. 18:9 on goal difference from 14 games does also give a good picture of the quality of the whole squad. Odd has their main edge on the defensive side of the game with a strict system to rely on. However, they also have offensive players that offer the needed creativity and goal scoring abilities that every team needs. Their last game against Valerenga (0-1) was a perfect example in a difficult away game. Odd was solid and made Valerenga frustrated as they did not get any space to play their game. At the same time, Odd created dangerous opportunities from crosses into the box. That is their signature move as both of their fullbacks and wingers offers great crosses.
They have a strong striker in Olivier Occean that moves smart in order to get his head on every cross that comes into his area. That combination either makes chances for Occean himself or gives other players more space inside the box as well. The goal against Valerenga came with a cross being badly cleared by Valerenga’s defense, with winger Rafik Zekhnini easily tapped in 0-1 before halftime. Odd continued defending well even though Occean had to save his team on the line after Valerenga getting a header on goal from a corner in the second half. It was a deserved win after all and it gives Odd 3-1-0 to show for from their last four league games. They did also proceed in the qualification for Europa League back on Thursday after beating Mariehamn 1-3 on aggregate after two legs. Their second leg gave them an opportunity to rest some key players as they led 2-0 from the first meeting. Striker Olivier Occean (13/3), winger Bentley (14/3) and defender Thomas Grogaard (14/0) was rested from the start which makes them full of energy tonight. Midfielder Jone Samuelsen (8/1) is still injured.
Aalesund is another team that is struggling this season with a current 13th place at the table. 3-3-8 in 14 games gives them just 12 points and just one point above the relegation zone. It will probably be a fight for survival for this second part of the season and it will be difficult when looking at their away form (1-1-5). However, they looked quite sharp in their previous game against Stromsgodset (4-2). Despite their loss in the end, Aalesund gave them a really good fight along the way as they held 2-2 from the 34th until the 74th minute. Stromsgodset was really good in this match as well, which makes Aalesund’s performance even better despite the loss in the end. The team produced chances with the same frequency as the home team and they were not afraid on going forward. They truly need the same spirit tonight as an even tougher away match is waiting. No injuries are troubling the team.
With the odds being very low on Odd this evening it is more interesting to see on the amount of corners here. Odd has a very strong team on the pitch tonight that will truly be offensive against a struggling defense at Aalesund. As mentioned, Odd rely their play on crosses into the box with both their wingers and fullbacks making them. Aalesund struggles to deny these kinds of attacks as their last game against Stromsgodset clearly showed. Odd’s wingers with Zekhnini and Bentley in combination with the strong striker in Ocean will surely make Aalsund’s defense and keeper into difficult situations. At the same time, Aalesund will have to try on counter attacks or set pieces in order to break through Odd’s solid defense. I clearly believe in an offensive game with a lot of shots at goal. Odd is the better team, but they usually do not score an extreme number of goals against their opponents when they are winning. I therefore see over 10 corners as a good option in a match that should contain a lot of chances.