Skeid v Grorud
Two of the worst teams in the OBOS Ligaen meet here in Oslo and both are absolutely desperate to win. Skeid have lost a massive 10 out of 11 league matches this season and are quite frankly, out of their depth at this level of football. They will point to the fact that seven of their defeats have been by an exact one-goal margin but conceding a league-high 23 goals has simply not been good enough. They have perhaps been unlucky because their overall xGA is 16.83 but this is a team that finds ways to concede goals and the defence isn’t very strong. At the other end of the field, Skeid have been somewhat competitive by netting 12 goals. They have scored at least one goal in all of their home fixtures and generally put up a good fight in front of their own fans. Against similar opposition, Skeid will surely fancy their chances of getting 3 points and I expect them to be quite attacking with their approach.
Grorud are the only team in the OBOS Ligaen without a win this season. They have however drawn 6 of their 11 fixtures and are higher in the table than Skeid. They are another team with huge defensive issues and their 22 goals conceded is mirrored by their xGA per 90 mins of 1.82, the worst of any team in the OBOS Ligaen. Grorud have at least only failed to find the back of the net twice this season, and one of those was against Brann last week. They lost that fixture 0-2 against the runaway league leaders which was actually an acceptable outcome. Grorud have been better away from home where they’ve drawn 4 out of 6 matches, including at places like Stabaek, KFUM Oslo and Raufoss. They probably have to be given some sort of respect for those results.
Skeid are 1.87 favourites to win this match which feels very short. How could anyone trust them as an odds-on favourite? They have lost 10 out of 11 OBOS Ligaen matches and there is probably some value to be had on Grorud X2 draw double chance. However, you would have to be very brave to trust the visitors as well. I think the best bet here is for both teams to score. Neither side can defend very well, and this should be an open game of football between two sides who attack hard for victory. Neither side has a single clean sheet between them all season and if that continues then this is certainly the obvious and best bet. There are enough attacking options for both sides with Jonny Buduson and Bjorn Martin Kristensen spearheading the respective strike forces.
Fredrikstad v Åsane
It has now been four winless OBOS Ligaen matches for Fredrikstad. They also took a battering in the midweek Norwegian Cup away to Brann 0-6! Their recent fixture list has been difficult, and they’ve faced sides all currently inside the top seven positions. Drawing 0-0 away to Stabaek in the previous round at least ended a three game losing streak and showed they are capable when facing better sides, however the aforementioned cup match probably hit them hard. Fredrikstad need to bounce back, and this looks like a good opportunity facing an Åsane side who are statistically one of the worst in the division. Fredrikstad still have the 6th best xG in the league, averaging 1.54 per 90 mins. Their problem has been at the other end of the field leaking 1.72 xG per match which is the fourth worst in the league. Fredrikstad have only played four home matches so far this season but have won two of those fixtures.
Åsane travel here after claiming a surprise 2-1 victory vs Sandnes last week. They were under severe pressure in the second half to hold on for the win but somehow managed to prevail. The visitors have won 2 of their last 3 OBOS Ligaen matches but continue to overachieve their metrics. Åsane have the second worst xG of any team in the league, averaging just 0.90 per 90 mins which is extremely low for the OBOS Ligaen. At the other end of the field their 22 goals conceded is one of the worst records and reflected in their xGA of 19.91. Young midfielder Mats Selmer Thornes has been a rare bright spark in the team scoring 3 times and weighing in with 2 assists.
Fredrikstad are a fully professional side and now face semi pro opposition. I think they can take advantage of that fact by taking a much needed victory. Their recent form is poor, but this is a much more winnable fixture. It is interesting to note that both of Fredrikstad’s home wins have been to nil this season and something like 1-0 or 2-0 wouldn’t be a surprise here. Fredrikstad will probably want to keep things tight after losing 0-6 in the cup and did keep a clean sheet in the previous round vs Stabaek. They are a fairly short price to win at 1.50 but I think this looks like the best bet. The home side should show their class and beat an Åsane outfit who are one of the worst in the division.
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