VAR, Sevco, The SPFL And Free Money From The SFA.

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Today, after Dundee went 1-0 up at Ibrox, I checked the odds on a penalty kick in that game. It was around even money. Even money.

Take just about any game in any league and check the odds on a penalty in the match; I guarantee you that they are higher than that. Why do the bookies think it so likely?

For the same reason we do.

Even offering evens on that is practically giving money away.

I stuck a fiver on it. I was pretty sure I’d win and under those kinds of circumstances I would normally have bet a lot more. Way back in the sands of time, I took Manchester United to beat Rangers at Ibrox in a Champions League game at even money before kick-off.

I thought that was such a good bet that not only did I stick £200 on it but convinced my flat-mates to bet on the game too. One of them stuck what was literally his last £100 on that match.

One of the Neville brothers scored the only goal; I was biting my nails, but I never doubted the outcome. It was the same here. I would have been shocked not to win.

The only reason I didn’t stick more, a lot more, on it is that there was zero chance that the spot kick was going to be given to Dundee, not whilst Ibrox was still in need, and I certainly wasn’t going to sit there and hope for that just to win a few quid.

No, this was more about proving the general point.

But if you’re a gambler, there are few more obvious bets on the card.

When a penalty does finally go against them in the league it will not be at a critical moment; it will be whilst they are comfortably in front and cruising. But when in need, the VAR officials are always there. Always.

Oh, I have no doubt that the shirt was pulled and thus there are “grounds” for giving the decision; just weeks after refs told managers that a shirt pull in the box was not an automatic penalty the Ibrox club has had three of them in less than a half dozen games. Go figure.

Remember that traffic cop analogy.

This is what VAR is for now.

To find any excuse to give Ibrox the help it needs.

Richard Gordon’s piece is ever more important in light of this. Game after game, week after week, VAR finds infringements in the penalty box whenever the Ibrox club requires a goal.

But in the year since it has been in use in Scotland it has not yet, never, found a single one that goes the other way. Is that credible? I think not.

Although the odds were not great, I doubt I was the only person to make that bet.

That’s why the bookies are only offering evens; they thought it just as likely as I did. If I were them I might be tempted to take a proper look at officiating in Scotland. There doesn’t have to be bias involved for there to be cheating going on here.

If I can read the runes like this, how many others can?

How much money do you think was riding on a penalty at Ibrox today? Only the bookies know for sure, but those odds suggest that they recognise a pattern somewhere.

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  • Gordon Ashley says:

    The question I would be asking is why players keep pulling rangers shirts in boxes despite knowing for a fact it will be a pen.. it’s got deliberate match fixing written all over it

  • Bob (original) says:

    And another ‘stastically significant deviation’ about penalties:

    Virtually EVERY club in the SPL should be awared a penalty in EVERY game

    – for shirt pulling inside the box.

    Yet penalty awards for this type of foul appears to be rather ‘selective’…?

  • Johnno says:

    How long before the bookies start making some noise about giving away easy money upon a weekly basis?
    Not much chance of the scum given a peno against them, all the while they are chasing us in the goal difference either

  • James Ward says:

    The game in Scotland is definitely corrupt. Too many people at the top are involved in it too.

  • JOHN says:

    My problem is not with them getting penalties, it is about all the other teams NOT getting refd to to same standard, that for me is where the cheating comes in, yes they can point to a Jersey pull or push in the box, but in the other box or in other games it is NOT given, very poor by the officials and downright cheating.

  • Captain Swing says:

    Might be interesting if bookies stopped offering odds on Sevco getting awarded penalties and were to let slip why…. but given the cosy relationship between the governing bodies and the bookmakers it’s unlikely. Remember the rank hypocrisy of the fitba’ authorities piously handing out bans to players and coaches for betting on the outcome of matches…… played under the auspices of the Ladbrokes Premiership, the Betfred Scottish League Cup or the William Hill Scottish Cup?

  • Magua says:

    The Huns would be a mid-table team, were it not for the weekly favours that they receive from the referees.

    As for the bookies? They must be getting hammered every week, by punters betting on ‘penalty to Secco.’ You would think that they would want some sort of investigation opened, to look into this statistical anomaly. Celts often wonder where the money is coming from, to keep the Ibrox operation afloat. Perhaps an Ibrox insider is betting a few hundred grand per game on this outcome.

    Hail Hail.

  • larsson7 says:

    71 and counting,The “Old Firm” game for the world Record Record,
    Surely this can’t go on,I think ? the bookies are definitely watching this farce.?

  • Dora says:

    Not that I’d ever stick a bet on that rotten klub, but evens!!!
    That sounds like the perfect opportunity to print free cash-especially when it’s that early in the game!

  • Michael McCartney says:

    Until the Celtic Board and some of the other clubs speak up this will go on and on. VAR is a disaster for Scottish Football it has shown how corrupt it is. Before VAR the cheating could be passed off as honest mistakes, referee unsighted etc, but now with VAR it is so obvious that what we all knew over the years is true, Rangers are refereed differently from other clubs in the League.
    Not only do they get awarded the most penalties but concede the least by a substantial number. The penalties they are awarded are usually when they are behind, drawing or one goal ahead.
    Scottish Football has been governed by a dishonest FA over the years, and until our board grow a pair nothing will change.

  • Bob (original) says:

    And depressingly, Scottish football is so wrapped up in betting.

    Our own club included: we literally sold our shirts to Dafabet.

    Maybe everybody, [except the paying punters of course], has a vested interest

    which makes it easier to keep their heads in the sand? 🙁

  • Robert Shaw says:

    If irregular bets are placed by players?
    Questions…and hell is raised.
    This surely would be picked up by algorithms or policing?.
    I can’t for the life of me see why no-one else,
    media and otherwise cannot blatantly ignore this penalty phenomenon!!

  • John L says:

    I dug out a football bet yesterday and to boost it, I stuck sevco on to be awarded a penalty and score it 21- 10 , that is just a fraction over 2-1 , it’s just a pity that my other 3 bets were not certainties lol

  • Peter says:

    They can of course miss the penalty. Just like Celtic always get an inordinate amount of stoppage timexl when they need it, but didn’t take advantage odlf it today.

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