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Blame Real Madrid, Tottenham and PSG for busting your weekend accum

by Aidan Elder | January 14, 2013

By Aidan Elder | Chief sports writer

HE'S ALL ZLAT - Ibrahimovich missed a sitter against Ajaccio, but he still thinks he's great

HE’S ALL ZLAT – Ibrahimovich missed a sitter against Ajaccio, but he still thinks he’s great

We got treated to another hugely eventual weekend of football across the continent. As ever, we tried to make our fortune with an ambitious accum so we could tell our boss where he could stick his job, but the fact I’m writing this piece should tell you how that went. Here’s a look at some of the shortest price favourites who failed to do the business and may deserve the bulk of your ire.

Paris St. Germain

Odds: 1/7
Opposition: Ajaccio at the Parc des Princes (Ligue 1)

What went wrong?

Despite having line-up worth roughly the same as the entire island of Corsica, PSG couldn’t get the goal to send their island visitors home with anything less than a couple of Toblerones picked up in duty-free. With the highly rated Mexican goalkeeper, Guillermo Ochoa and an Adrian Mutu who needs to keep playing professionally until he’s about 320 years old to repay what he owes Chelsea, Ajaccio aren’t hopeless relegation fodder, but they aren’t a million miles from those levels either.

PSG were expected to win and win handsomely, but with 25 attempts on goal and only four of them on target, Carlo Ancelotti’s side showed all the accuracy of a Wikipedia biography. They bossed affairs, but couldn’t get the goal. Bad finishing was the main culprit of the weekend’s biggest choke, but the cause wasn’t helped by Thiago Motta who got sent off just before half time for trying to relief one of the Ajaccio players of his ankle. It finished 0-0, making it the biggest farce in the French capital since the Griswald’s stopped by on their European Vacation.

Dunfermline

Odds: 2/7
Opposition: Airdrie at East End Park (Scottish First Division)

What went wrong?

The Scottish lower leagues are often a fertile hunting ground for people looking to beef up their accums with some sort priced bankers. Top of the table Dunfermline’s hosting of relegation scrappers, Airdrie had all the hallmarks of a straightforward short-priced win, but the Pars put in a performance that made spending a cold January afternoon in Dunfermline even worse than it already is.

The league leaders went behind after four minutes, managed to equalise before conceding two second half goals. Charlie Adam’s goalkeeping and presumably less rotund brother, Grant Adam was one of Airdrie’s heroes thanks to some crucial saves, but the two goals from Ryan Donnelly also helped. As measure of how disappointing the Pars were came from their goalscorer, Ryan Wallace who failed to insult a referee or opponent when he admitted:

Airdrie were excellent. All over the park they were winning first and second balls. Full credit to them, they came here, worked hard and deserved all the points.

Such a disappointingly level-headed and mature view isn’t what you expect from a Scot after a defeat, heaping more misery upon anyone who backed the Pars.

Real Madrid

Odds: 1/2
Opposition: Osasuna at Estadio El Sadar (La Liga)

What went wrong?

The Special One’s seemingly long and fractious goodbye from Real Madrid continued apace on Saturday night as the defending champions were held to a draw which about 24 hours later allowed Barcelona to extend their lead to 18 points over their hated rivals. Jose will no doubt point to the fact he was without Ronaldo, Sergio Ramos and Antonio ‘totally my actual first choice keeper and not just a stop-gap while I teach Iker Casillas a lesson for not liking me’ Adan due to suspension, but still Real were expected to record a win over a team who look so destined for the second tier they should call Neil Warnock now.

Real can’t even point to bad luck or the Osasuna goal leading a charmed life for their convenient excuse because the stats say La Liga’s basement club had more shots, more of which were on target, more corners and the same amount of possession as the Madrid giants. Kaka got sent off 18 minutes after coming on as a substitute, but as it’s no longer 2006, that doesn’t matter as much as it used to. Another terrible night for Real and a worse one for anyone who threw them into their bankers accum.

Hull

Odds: 8/13
Opposition: Sheffield Wednesday at the KC Stadium (Championship)

What went wrong?

Steve Bruce is currently enjoying the latest of those spells in his career when he gets loads of ill-advised praise thrown away and looks like a managerial genius who can do no wrong. You know, it’s that twelve to eighteen month period of time that comes just before things turn to crap and he gets found out as the adequate but unexceptional gaffer he is. To his credit, he has Hull challenging for automatic promotion and the Tigers were odds-on favourites to dispose of struggling Sheffield Wednesday at home.

The Owls took the lead early on, but Hull equalised late on thanks to Robert Koren. Then Tigers’ goalkeeper, Eldin Jakupovic took centre stage – not in the good way. He butter-fingered a cross into his own goal and also got clattered in the process, meaning he needed to be stretchered off in a neck brace. Despite only being on the pitch for about 10 minutes, substitute keeper, Mark Oxley couldn’t keep a mini-clean sheet (clean napkin?) and a Michail Antonio goal made it 3-1 to the visitors. Bad news if you backed them and even worse news if you’ve had your ego inflated recently with some undue praise.

Tottenham

Odds: 4/5
Opposition: QPR at Loftus Road (Premier League)

What went wrong?

Ok, I’ll admit it. I didn’t watch this one. I was doing my weekly shop in Aldi (I bought a cake stand for some reason), but I kept up to speed with on the car radio. The guy on the radio basically said ‘Tottenham haven’t broke the deadlock, but they do have three substitutions remaining’ as if that was some reassuring sign that their superiority would shine through.

That superiority did shine through, although in the form of some flattering statistics rather than the three points. If it was a boxing match, the visitors would have been awarded the win, but then again, if it was a boxing match, Spurs would have been thumping the air adjacent to their opponent rather than their opponent. They went close a number of times but found out that Julio Cesar is no Rob Green. The Brazilian pulled off some fine saves to earn the R’s a point and give Harry Redknapp a faint feeling of revenge over his former employers.

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