Pete’s Picks – All-Ireland SFC Final Preview – Dublin v Kerry

Dublin v Kerry

Match Betting

First things first: Can anybody truly say, with absolute conviction, who they reckon will win the All-Ireland SFC final at Croke Park on Sunday afternoon?

Understandably, even BoyleSports’ odds-compilers have not definitively separated the two counties in the match and outright betting.

Dublin have been installed as the even-money ‘favourites’, a term used loosely in this instance, and Jim Gavin’s side are 4/5 to lift the trophy. Kerry, though, are being pitched at 6/5 to win the game and evens to prevail by any means.

The draw, incidentally, is considered a 15/2 shot. This match, however, could represent one of those whereby hindsight is a wonderful thing and on Monday morning everybody is thinking ‘It all makes perfect sense now’. However, foresight is the name of the game here and value-seeking is the order of the day.

Allowing for the fact the margins are so tight in the outcome-related markets, and rightly so, BoyleSports’ bettors may be better served focusing in on a select few players that could out-perform their odds in the individual markets. Some punters may argue that is a balls-less cop-out, however, any regular readers throughout this summer will appreciate that is certainly not this writer’s style.

If pushed, say I was offered a €1,000 free bet for charity, the money would go on Kerry at 6/5. Yet, the reality of the situation is far removed from that scenario and so angles in to potential profit can be found elsewhere. And dissecting those individual markets may yield such dividends.

In the First and Anytime Goalscorer markets you could throw a blanket over Bernard Brogan, James O’Donoghue, Diarmuid Connolly, Paul Geaney and Colm Cooper.
Brogan is correctly the marginal market leader in this regard at 5/1 and 9/4 respectively. The St Oliver Plunkett’s/Eoghan Ruadh predator is having a remarkable campaign and in a contest of potentially fine margins another green flag from Brogan – he has scored 6-19, all in open play – could be title-defining.

In fact, Brogan, if Dublin are to be successful, is the most likely match-winner within their arsenal. He is also just 9/4 to be nominated for the RTÉ Man of the Match award and an industry-high 8/1 to win the award. The latter is a price very much worth taking, however.

Brogan’s name and picture have been splashed all over the media this week. With that in mind he will be to the forefront of everybody’s thoughts and the contributions Bernard makes to the Dublin cause will therefore have heightened levels of appreciation. Additionally, Dublin-Kerry clashes have personal significance for the player as his mother, Marie, met his father, Bernard snr in the Kingdom via Government minister Jimmy Deenihan.

And you should never underestimate the psychological significance of details such as that when it comes to pre-judging how a player might perform against certain opponents.

On the flipside of the coin we have, none other than, Colm Cooper, without a doubt the most gifted attacker of this generation. Similar to the way in which golfers come alive on particular courses, The Gooch tends to save all of his genius for matches against the likes of Cork and, of most pertinence, Dublin.

The steeper the mountain the easier Cooper seems to breathe and the Dr Croke’s offensive visionary could have a stormer at Croker. He is 11/4 to be shortlisted for the MVP award and 10/1 to be handed the coveted glass piece. Take the 10/1.

BoyleSports have an incredible 112 markets on Sunday’s game and have priced up whether or not Hawk-Eye will be used at headquarters. It’s 5/6 your choice, yes or no, and I would be inclined to think those odds underestimate the possibility of it being called upon. Hawk-Eye has been used regularly at Croke Park and it would not be at all surprising to see it implemented again on this occasion.

The odds-compilers are also laying 4/7 about no red card being shown which should cop for favourite backers as this encounter is unlikely to be as ill-tempered as the league meeting was between these sides earlier in the year. Plus, referees, let’s face it, are much less tempted to dismiss a player in a final, especially of this magnitude. You can back a player to be red-carded at 5/4 but those odds are far too short.

Pete’s Picks:
Bernard Brogan RTÉ Man of the Match @ 8/1
Colm Cooper RTÉ Man of the Match @ 10/1

*Prices correct at time of publication