Smolevichi won promotion last season and is one of the smallest clubs in the Belarusian Premier League. But the season started off in great fashion, with a draw with reigning champions Dynamo Brest. Now the minnows travel to take on Vitebsk in round three.
The home side only just escaped relegation last year and will be conscious of the need to get some points on the board as soon as possible. Vitebsk fans will be expecting a win here, and I go into detail in this Vitebsk vs. Smolevichi betting preview.
Vitebsk vs. Smolevichi Odds
Vitebsk to Win+146
Smolevichi to Win+202
With it being the much bigger club and playing at home, it is slightly surprising that BetOnline’s sportsbook has not made the odds for a Vitebsk win shorter. Smolevichi may have achieved that draw with Dynamo on the opening day of the season, but the promoted club is likely to struggle this season.
Match Preview of Vitebsk vs. Smolevichi
Vitebsk’s glory years are in the past, and with relegation only just being avoided last season, head coach Sergey Yasinski will be looking to get some points early on in the campaign to make life easier later. The visit of Smolevichi provides his team with a great opportunity to pick up another victory.
The season started brightly for Vitebsk with that win over Gorodeya, but the defeat to Neman was an immediate step back. After not scoring in either of the first two games, the manager may look to change up his forward line here.
After gaining promotion last year, a draw with Dynamo Brest was a great start to this season. The loss to Isloch in the next game will not trouble manager Aleksandr Brazevich too much, as his much-changed starting eleven starts to bed in for the new year.
There are a few potentially easier games coming up for Smolevichi, so even a defeat against Vitebsk will not be too damaging. But the bookmakers obviously feel that there is a chance for this team to surprise a few of the bigger clubs, so it will be interesting to see what happens over the next few weeks.
My Betting Pick
Vitebsk to Win
I’m not quite as confident as BetOnline in Smolevichi’s ability to go to Vitebsk and pick up a point — or even three. The value bet would definitely seem to be a home win, and I feel that Vitebsk may even be able to get a few goals here.
We also have prepared previews of the other two Belarusian soccer games on Sunday.