The appointment of David Weir as manager of Sheffield United was a cracking result for the layers but, more importantly, a triumph for the Blades as I am convinced the Scot will be a great success having been so highly regarded at Hearts, Everton and Rangers.
Intelligent, articulate and hard-working he was admired by everyone at Goodison Park and, although his inexperience is a slight concern for such a difficult job, I think he will be a great success at Bramall Lane.
He has captained every side he has played for and the 10/1 for the Blades for 2013/14 League 1 Title at betvictor.com appeals more now than it did last week.
It would be a short price that he will be asking either David Moyes or Roberto Martinez for a young loan player for the forthcoming season.
Gareth Southgate had been one of a number of potential managers well supported for Bramall Lane but the former Boro boss and now ITV pundit is 1/4 to take over as the next England Under 21 manager after the Three Lions lamentable performance in Israel which surely sees the end of Stuart Pearce’s involvement in the England set-up.
The new season is a good few weeks away but we are already betting on sides finishing in the top six in the 2013/14 Championship season and make Wednesday a 7/1 shot, Barnsley 12s and Doncaster Rovers 14s.
We are also betting on sides NOT to finish in the bottom three and make Wednesday 1/7, the Tykes 1/3 and Rovers 8/15. Yeovil are 10/11 to be relegated and 7/2 to finish bottom with Rovers 5/1, Barnsley 7s and Wednesday 12/1 to be propping up the table at the end of the season.
A wonderful week of sport lies ahead with the US Open the main feature; Tiger Woods is our 11/2 favourite although the world number 1 has not added to his 14 major titles since landing the same event back in 2008 after a 19-hole play-off with Rocco Mediate. We are betting ¼ odds 7 places on the event at BetVictor and each way support has come for Phil Mickelson (who has finished runner up five times in this event previously) at 20/1 and Justin Rose at 28s.
I know he has had a poor season to date but Rory McIlroy must return to form sooner rather than later and at 22/1 he must be the each way call; he won’t have to hit his driver too many times on this course and granted some luck, he can make a welcome return to form. The Irishman already has two Majors to his name including a US Open at Congressional in 2011 and 22/1 for seven places looks too big.
The Confederations Cup starts on Sunday and it promises to be a cracking hors d’oeuvre for next year’s World Cup in Brazil; make no mistake this is no inconsequential tournament with Brazil, Spain, Italy and Uruguay in opposition.
With home court advantage, as they will in the World Cup Finals of course, Brazil will be keen to make a mark; the hosts are 6/4 favourites with Spain 7/4, Italy 13/2, Uruguay 10s, Mexico 11/1 and 25/1 bar.
The eight sides are split into two groups with Brazil pooled with Japan, Mexico and Italy before the semi-finals and final which will be played in Rio on the last day of the month.
Royal Ascot takes centre stage next week but it will take place without, arguably, the best greatest racehorse ever Frankel who retired last autumn, and his legendary trainer Sir Henry Cecil, who passed away earlier in the week, having saddled no fewer than 75 winners at the Royal meeting.
His like will never be seen again and it will bring the house down if Joyeuse, a half-sister to Frankel, could win for the yard in the Albany Stakes.
BetVictor will refund all losses up to £25 as a free bet if champion jockey Richard Hughes finishes in the frame in any particular race at the five-day festival. As well as having the pick of the Hannon juveniles Hughes will have an excellent book of rides including the 1000 Guineas winner Sky Lantern.