Football Bet of the Day: Clean sheet specialists Wellington to land knockout victory

 | Friday 17th May 2024, 11:00am

Friday 17th May 2024, 11:00am

My previous football bet of the day, on Thursday, May 16, saw a 7/4 over 3.5 goals shot land as the New York Red Bulls beat DC United 4-1 at Audi Field.

We stay outside of Europe for Saturday's football bet of the day, but this time we head down under to take in the Australian A-League Men's second-leg match between Wellington Phoenix and Melbourne Victory. The pair are competing to advance to the Grand Final, where they will play either Central Coast Mariners or Sydney FC.

Football Bet of the Day - Saturday, May 18

  • Wellington Phoenix to win to nil vs Melbourne Victory @ 18/5

Earlier today, I previewed this contest and selected Wellington Phoenix to win and under 2.5 goals at 5/1, and Wellington Phoenix to win 1-0 at 17/2, as my two tips.

For my football bet of the day, I am sticking with a similar theme - that being the Nix to win without conceding - but backing them to win to nil at 18/5 lowers the threshold while still providing great value.

Saturday's hosts at Sky Stadium finished runners-up in the regular Australian A-League Men's season, just two points behind Premiers' Plate holders Central Coast Mariners, and ended the campaign having collected at least three more points at home (32) than any other side despite playing a game fewer than five of the teams.

Giancarlo Italiano's side won 10 of their 13 games in Wellington and lost just once - a 3-0 reverse to Newcastle Jets on December 9. They've won their last six at Sky Stadium and have shut out the opposition four times in that run.

One of the teams who failed to breach their defence was Melbourne Victory, their visitors on Saturday. The two sides drew 1-1 twice earlier in the season, but after a goalless draw in last week's first leg, the Boys in Blue have now failed to score in their last two meetings with the Nix.

Goals have been a concern for Tony Popovic's side all season, with seven sides in a 12-team division outscoring them, including wooden spooners Perth Glory.

Curiously, Wellington were not one of them, as they scored 42 - one fewer than Victory - but conceded seven fewer.

Football Bet of the Day - Saturday, May 18 - Wellington Phoenix to win to nil vs Melbourne Victory at 18-5

Victory have actually failed to find the net in three of their last five matches, and that must be a huge concern for Popovic, who will be without the suspended Zinedine Machach again.

The French playmaker was instrumental in helping Victory to achieve a third-place finish this season, scoring seven times and registering five assists, but his red card in the Elimination Final win against Melbourne City ruled him out of both legs with Wellington.

Victory did have the better of the chances in Melbourne last Sunday, recording 20 shots compared to the Nix's six, and five on target compared to zero for Italiano's side.

But Wellington goalkeeper Alex Paulsen - named in the A-League Men's Team of the Season earlier this week - held strong in net, and looks well-placed to do the same again on Saturday.

The Nix have kept 12 clean sheets this season, winning eight of those games, and look good odds to make it a ninth this weekend.

You can read all our latest Football Bets of the Day at our dedicated Betfred Insights content hub.

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