June 2018

Only 1 in 5 Brits believe Corbyn becoming PM is more likely than England World Cup win 

Sporting Index finds Brits believe Labour leader claiming No. 10, Liverpool winning next season’s Premier League and David Beckham becoming a ‘Sir’ less likely than World Cup win 
 
Friday 1st June 2018 – On the eve of England’s World Cup warm-up match against Nigeria, a survey from spread betting firm Sporting Index has revealed only 23% of British people think Jeremy Corbyn becoming Prime Minister in the next four years is more likely than England winning the World Cup.    
 
Of the 2,050 people who answered the survey, conducted by market research experts Opinium, only 23% said they believe Jeremy Corbyn is likelier to oust current PM Theresa May than England win the 2018 World Cup in Russia. 
 
Those surveyed were also asked what was the likelier outcome – England lifting the trophy in Russia or US President Donald Trump being impeached. Only 22% said they thought it was likelier that the President would be impeached in the next year.   
After the Royal Wedding, it might have been expected that the majority would expect Meghan Markle to fall pregnant before the end of the year. However, only 35% believe she is likelier to announce she is expecting over Gareth Southgate’s men lifting the trophy this summer.  
 
Despite Liverpool reaching the Champions League final, only to lose 3-1 to Real Madrid, only 20% of those surveyed expect them to land the Premier League next season ahead of the Three Lions winning the World Cup. A lowly 14% said Scotland were more likely to reach the next World Cup in Qatar in 2022 in what would end a 24-year absence at the major tournament.  
Elsewhere, only 19% think David Beckham will receive a knighthood before 2020 over England winning their first major tournament since 1966, while just 17% think Harry Kane captaining England to a World Cup win is less likely than a Britain Eurovision Song Contest win in 2019. 
 
Ed Fulton, political trading spokesman for Sporting Index, said: “The Three Lions breezed through the qualifying campaign, and with players such as Raheem Sterling and Harry Kane having such strong seasons, perhaps England fans genuinely believe they can go all the way this time. Either that, or they just think Jeremy Corbyn has no chance of making his way into Downing Street.” 
 
Could 94 be the lucky number for England  in World Cup opener? 
 
Sporting Index predicts the aggregate shirt numbers of England’s first XI for their opening match 
 
Thursday 7th June 2018 – As England prepare for their final World Cup warm-up match against Costa Rica, leading spread betting firm Sporting Index has already predicted the starting XI and combined shirt numbers for their opening Group G match against Tunisia.  
 
With reports suggesting Three Lions manager Gareth Southgate is set to hand starts to No.20 Dele Alli, No.18 Ashley Young and No.12 Kieran Trippier, traders at Sporting Index believe the aggregate shirt number for the starting XI will amount to a total of 94.  
Players with one to 11 squad numbers expected to miss out on a starting spot in Volgograd include Tottenham left-back and No.3 Danny Rose, Liverpool midfielder and England’s No.8 Jordan Henderson and Leicester hitman Jamie Vardy who has been handed the No.11 shirt for the campaign in Russia.  
 
With Southgate strongly expected to go with his favoured 5-3-2 formation, most of the starting berths are a formality. Jordan Pickford, John Stones, Harry Maguire and Kyle Walker are all but confirmed in the back line, while Raheem Sterling, Dele Alli and Harry Kane will likely lead the front line.  
 
This leaves major decisions for Southgate as to which two players will lead the midfield charge out of Jordan Henderson, Eric Dier, Jesse Lingard and Ruben Loftus Cheek, while Ashley Young, Danny Rose and Kieran Trippier will battle for the two wing-back slots.  
 
Ed Fulton, trading spokesman for Sporting Index, said: “Pickford, Stones, Maguire and Walker are more or less certain to start, while it would be a big surprise if any of Sterling, Kane and Alli were to drop out. The wing-back positions are still up for grabs between Rose, Young and Trippier – although Walker could be pushed out wide to accommodate Cahill or Jones.  
 
“That leaves the two central midfield positions – and we think Southgate will field an attacking side to start with a bang. That could mean one of Henderson or Dier drops out to make room for Jesse Lingard. We’ve plumped for Dier to start – but it will be a close call.” 


Trump and Kim handshake to last for 11 seconds 

Sporting Index predicts length of greet between US President and North Korean Supreme Leader ahead of historic meeting 

Monday 11th June 2018 – Leading spread betting firm Sporting Index expects Donald Trump and Kim Jong-Un to share an 11-second handshake when the pair of world leaders meet in Singapore at tomorrow’s summit.
 
Proposing a spread of 10-12 seconds, Sporting Index foresees Trump holding a firm grip on his North Korean counterpart when the pair pose for the cameras or possibly going in for a second shake to keep the time ticking. 
 
Ed Fulton, political trading spokesman for Sporting Index, said: “How Donald Trump prepares to greet Kim Jong-Un, a man that he has described as “mentally deranged” and “a madman on the loose”, is tough to call. 
 
“The expectation here is that Trump will go in for a big shake for the cameras and keep the Korean leader locked in his palm for around 11 seconds, though the US President has been known to go in for two bites at the cherry before too and a quick couple of handshakes could also leave the second hand ticking into double figures.” 

Five under par needed to take US Open crown 

7 players under par, six over to make the cut and five under best round - Sporting Index predicts the ‘US Open in numbers’

Thursday, 14th June 2018 – Five under par is the score that will be required to take this year’s US Open at Shinnecock Hills, according to the traders from the leading spread-betting firm Sporting Index. 
 
The spread-betting experts have been hard at work totting up the numbers ahead of the second major of the year and believe this year’s tournament will be a classic US Open test with just seven players finishing under par after Sunday’s final round – 24 less than last year at Erin Hills. 
 
Sporting Index also predict this year’s cut will come at six over par, while of the 156 players taking part, the best score shot will be a five under par 65 – a score that was shot just four times last year when Brooks Koepka took the title. 
 
Ed Fulton, trading spokesman for Sporting Index, said: “Shinnecock Hills is one of the most famous venues on the US Open rota and is recognised as one of the fairest tests with all aspects of a golfer’s game being tested. 
 
“Brooks Koepka took the title at Erin Hills last year on 16 under, but with the US Open renowned as one the hardest tests of the year, we expect Shinnecock to play much tougher this year with five under par the magic number required to take home the trophy. 
 
“Par is never a bad score at a US Open and it looks like that will be the case this year as we think just seven players will finish under par, while six over is the mark needed to make the cut after Friday’s second round.”

 
 52 Years of Hurt: The Three Lions in numbers since that unforgettable day in 1966

Friday 15th June, 2018 – Nearly 52 years ago, England won the World Cup for the first time in the nation’s history. To mark England’s tenth World Cup finals campaign since the country’s finest moment in football, leading spread betting firm Sporting Index has studied English international football in numbers since that unforgettable day.  
 
Since England’s 4-2 win against Germany in the World Cup Final at Wembley, the national side have played 569 matches, recording a 55% win rate, while 387 different players have been capped for England during that period. Trent Alexander-Arnold and Nick Pope were the last players to be capped by England.   
 
A total of 17 managers have come and gone since Sir Alf Ramsey led the country to their one and only World Cup win thus far. Leeds manager Don Revie took over permanently from Sir Alf in 1974, while current gaffer Gareth Southgate became the 17th manager to take the reins after the World Cup winning boss.  
 
Spurs striker Jimmy Greaves, who cost £99,999, was the 1966 squad’s most expensive player. Today, as the team prepare for their opener against Tunisia in Russia, Manchester City right-back Kyle Walker is the current squad’s most expensive player after moving to Tottenham Hotspur for £53 million last summer.  
 
The ’66 squad was made up of players from 14 different clubs – West Ham, Manchester United and Liverpool being most represented with three players each. The squad for Russia includes players from ten different teams, all in the Premier League, with Spurs the most represented club with five players. 
 
Throughout the 52 years, England have had 49 different captains after Bobby Moore, with Spurs striker Harry Kane becoming the 49th player to wear the armband.   
 
England have also scored 42 goals in their nine World Cup tournaments since 1966, with Gary Lineker grabbing ten of those along the way. 
 
Ed Fulton, trading spokesman for Sporting Index, said: “There’s no better image from the history of the Three Lions than the iconic shot of Bobby Moore being held aloft by his team mates while clutching the glistening Jules Rimet trophy, but a lot has happened since that unforgettable day.  
 
“A total of 17 managers have come and gone, overseeing 311 wins, 160 draws and 98 defeats, while the most expensive player price has rocketed from just under £100,000 to an eye-watering £53 million.   
 
“There’s no doubt football has changed, and despite there being numerous disappointing campaigns and despairing moments, we still hold out hope that Harry Kane can do what no other captain has achieved since Bobby Moore – lifting the World Cup for England.”
 
Sporting Index recover heavy loss following  costly Ronaldo display 

Sporting Index punters strike it rich with Cristiano Ronaldo goal minutes

Monday, 18th June, 2018 – Sporting Index punters were jumping for joy after Cristiano Ronaldo’s remarkable hat-trick display against Spain hit the spread betting firm for £80,000.   
 
The Real Madrid forward scored three in the World Cup glamour tie to take his total goal minutes to 136, after Sporting Index traders had initially priced the market at 20-23. The Portuguese’s stunning free-kick in the 88th minute confirmed a miserable night for the traders and left bettors on cloud nine heading into the weekend.  
 
However, shock results for tournament favourites Brazil and Germany on Sunday helped Sporting Index scoop six figures to claw back losses over the weekend. Brazil were left frustrated by Switzerland in a 1-1 draw in Rostov, while Mexico hit Germany on the counter-attack to claim a stunning 1-0 win.  
 
Neville Burdock, Head of Trading at Sporting Index, said: “Portugal’s 3-3 draw with Spain was good value for our punters in more ways than one. Cristiano Ronaldo goal minutes opened at 20-23 and settled at 136 to cost us £30,000 alone. We thought that was all she wrote until the Real Madrid man stepped up to produce a stunning free-kick in the dying minutes to hit us for another £50,000.   
 
“However, the weekend ended well for us thanks to Mexico’s plucky 1-0 win against Germany and Switzerland managing to stifle Neymar and co. to earn a 1-1 draw against Brazil in Rostov. Both results earned us six figures to ensure we recovered from Friday’s 3-3 thriller.”  

Late Harry Kane winner leaves Sporting Index feeling flat 

 Punters have more reasons to celebrate winner in Three Lions World Cup opener 

Tuesday, 19th June, 2018 – Sporting Index were left with a bitter sweet feeling after Harry Kane’s late header secured a win for England but meant the spread betting firm narrowly missed out on a six figure profit.   
 
The Three Lions captain rose to the occasion after netting two for Gareth Southgate’s men to claim three points in their World Cup Group G opener against Tunisia.   
 
Sporting Index had priced total goal minutes for the Spurs striker at 32-35, which ended up as 101 after his finish in the dying minutes claimed a 2-1 win.   
 
Headed goal minutes was also a sore loss after traders had priced the market at 23-26, and the spread bettors claimed a victory as the captain’s late strike took the market to 90.   
 
Neville Burdock, Head of Trading at Sporting Index, said: “The Harry Kane winner hit us hard in every way possible, especially on markets such as total goal minutes, Harry Kane goal minutes and headed goal minutes. We were on course for a significant six figure win but virtually came out flat in the end. 
 
“While we’re delighted that the Lions started off with a win, it didn’t work out in the kindest fashion for us. Well done to the punters who came out on top – it was a double celebration for them last night.”

Paying the penalty – a record 27 spot-kicks to be awarded in Russia 

VAR and trigger-happy refs mean this World Cup will have more penalties than any other 

Friday 22 June 2018 – After an opening week dominated by VAR and penalties, traders from spread betting firm Sporting Index have predicted we are in for 27 spot-kicks during the tournament – smashing the previous World Cup record of 18. 
 
11 penalties have been given so far in Russia, with the current competition being the first edition that VAR has been used. To put that in perspective – just 13 penalties were given in 2014, the lowest since the move to 32 teams in 1998. 
 
The advent of VAR is having a drastic impact on the tournament so far. A remarkable 17.6% of goals in the opening week have been scored from the penalty spot (with a further two missed by Argentina’s Lionel Messi, and Peru’s Christian Cueva) – compared to 7.01% four years ago, and an average of 8.32% since 1994. 
 
Four of the 11 penalties have been given on review after the referee initially didn’t give them – and Sporting Index traders think the use of video technology will continue to overturn marginal decisions throughout the tournament. 
 
While the penalty success rate in Russia of 81.81% is high, it’s nowhere near the 92.31% from four years ago – or indeed, the flawless record from 1998, where every single one of the 17 penalties awarded were converted. 
 
Ed Fulton, trading spokesman for Sporting Index, said: “This is the first World Cup that VAR is being used – and we’re already seeing the impact it has had on penalties. We’re predicting Russia 2018 to smash the record for the most spot-kicks given, with the total of 27 more than doubling the number from four years ago in Brazil. 
 
“While VAR is causing a headache for referees, it’s causing great entertainment for us fans – and it may even give England a bit of penalty practice before the inevitable dreaded shootout.”

Three Lions Panama win hits Sporting Index for half a million 

Southgate’s men help pick the pockets of spreading betting firm with rampant win in Russia 

Monday 25th June, 2018 – Sporting Index have been left counting their losses after England’s rampant 6-1 victory against Group G strugglers Panama hit the leading spread betting firm to the tune of £500,000.  
 
Gareth Southgate’s men made history by recording the country’s biggest victory at a World Cup, and hit Sporting Index where it hurts across a number of costly markets.   
 
Sporting Index had England goal supremacy at 1.95 ahead of the match, but the Three Lions secured a 6-1 win to leave the market at five and stun the traders.   
 
John Stones also grabbed a brace in the first half to take his total goal minutes to 48 and deliver another blow for the traders in the process, while the spread for Harry Kane goal minutes settled at 130 when 46 was offered pre-match.  
 
More importantly for Sporting Index, £300,000 has been wiped off the expected long-term markets too in a crushing blow, as Harry Kane’s hat-trick blew the race wide open, while total tournament goals and penalty minutes have also left the traders sweating.  
Neville Burdock, Head of Trading at Sporting Index, said: “While we’re delighted England are performing so well, yesterday’s big win has really knocked us for six – or around half a million to be exact. 
 
“We lost sums of £40,000 and £50,000 on markets such as England goal supremacy, total goal minutes, penalty minutes and even John Stones goal minutes.  
 
“It looks like around £300,000 has been wiped off the expected long-term markets too, with Kane now leading the Golden Boot race. We also took hits on the total tournament goal minutes, England goal markets and penalty markets too.”