Soccer Selections: Run With Ronaldo to Score, Fade Struggling Teams

As we enter November, there are clear trends worth following in European soccer.

Some teams are great at home and terrible on the road, while others have not found an answer to their defensive problems.

All of those factors play into the weekend Soccer Selections. I'm fading a handful of struggling teams across Europe's big five leagues and I'm looking at the over in a match involving another side in bad form.

Additionally, I can't quit betting on Cristiano Ronaldo to score. He has been all around the goal for Manchester United and he is typically at his best on the biggest stage. United plays Manchester City in one of its biggest games of the English Premier League season, so that's why that prop is in play.

Below is a look at six plays I picked out for the weekend slate.

Overall Record (61-64; 5-4 Midweek)

EPL: Manchester United vs. Manchester City (Saturday, 8:30 a.m. ET)

Cristiano Ronaldo to score (+160)

Full disclosure here: As a Manchester United fan, I’m terrified of what Manchester City will do to the Red Devils after Liverpool’s five-goal thrashing a few weeks back.

The one thing I can feel confident in is that Cristiano Ronaldo has a flair for the dramatic. Just look at what he’s done recently in the UEFA Champions League.

Ronaldo has four goals off 10 shots on target in his last five games in all competitions. He usually isn’t at a plus-money price to score.

If United scores on Saturday, Ronaldo will likely be involved. I’ll take the risk here.

EPL: Brentford (-165) vs. Norwich City (Saturday, 11 a.m. ET)

Brentford is in need of a get-right game and it has just that on Saturday morning.

Norwich City is reaching Kansas football levels of fading. The Canaries are 0-2-8 and they have a -22 goal differential.

The last-placed team in the EPL has not scored a goal away from Carrow Road in league play.

Brentford just went through a tough three-game stretch against Chelsea, Leicester City and Burnley. The Bees beat Stoke City in the Carabao Cup in between those league losses.

The Bees should bounce back from that stretch with an easy win over Norwich, who has one foot back in the Championship.

Bundesliga: Wolfsburg (-1.5) vs, Augsburg (Saturday 11 a.m, ET)

Wolfsburg flipped from a team to fade to a squad to ride thanks to a managerial change.

The Wolves benefited from the new manager bump by beating Bayer Leverkusen in the Bundesliga and then RB Salzburg in the UEFA Champions League.

Augsburg sits in one of the three relegation spots and it has not played well on the road. It lost by multiple goals to Mainz and Freiburg and it gave up two goals to Borussia Dortmund in its last three road matches in league play.

Wolfsburg has Wout Weghorst back in the fold and he should combine well with the in-form Lukas Nmecha. Look for the two of them to be at the center of most attacking moves.

Ligue 1: Saint Etienne vs. Clermont Foot (Sunday, 9 a.m. ET)

Over 2.5 Goals (-125)

Here we have the classic clash of bad teams that concede a ton of goals.

As always, this match could go one of two ways. We could see a high-scoring affair with two poor defenses keeping up to form, or we witness a dud.

I’m banking on the former happening between Saint Etienne and Clermont Foot. They have two of the four worst goal concession totals in Ligue 1.

Both teams have scored in each of the last four Saint Etienne games. Over 2.5 has hit in seven of the club’s 12 games.

If you read this piece weekly, you’ll know I was on the Clermont Foot overs for a few weeks. Clermont played in six games with three or more goals. It scored once in four of its last five.

La Liga: Mallorca (+105) vs. Elche (Sunday, 12:30 p.m. ET)

Elche is 1-0-5 on its travels in La Liga and the lone victory came on the road against Getafe, who sits on the bottom of the league table.

Elche found the back of the net on three occasions in those six road matches. That form does not bode well for its trip to Mallorca.

Mallorca has not been great lately, but it is scoring goals on a consistent basis. The 12th-place side in La Liga has four goals in its last three matches, all draws.

If that scoring form extends into Sunday, Mallorca should take care of Elche.

Bundesliga: Greuther Furth vs. Eintracht Frankfurt (-105) (Sunday, 1:30 p.m. ET)

Eintracht Frankfurt did not expect to be in a relegation scrap this season.

Eintracht is down to 15th place, but it has a chance to turn everything around on Sunday against Greuther Furth, the worst team in the Bundesliga.

Eintracht comes into Sunday with momentum after it beat Olympiacos in the Europa League on Thursday.

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