|By PAUL GOUGH
The bookies are dangerously underestimating the Western Sydney Wanderers yet again for their trip to Perth as Week 13 of the A-League continues on Thursday.
The Wanderers were tipped by virtually every expert to finish last on the table in their debut season, but Tony Popovic's team continue to go from strength to strength and are coming off their most amazing performance yet - a 6-1 demolition of second-placed Adelaide at Parramatta Stadium.
And although they are now sitting in fourth spot and have conceded the equal-least amount of goals so far this season [nine - along with league leaders Central Coast] the bookies have again installed the Wanderers as clear underdogs for the trip to fifth-placed Perth.
But that merely presents another opportunity for punters to clean up on the Wanderers, who have provided unbelievable betting value all season for those backers that have shown faith in Popovic's team.
While the Glory are the even money [$2] favourites across the board, the Wanderers are $3.50 at sportsbet.com.au, $3.70 at Eskander's Betstar and incredible value for a team that have won their past three matches at $4.20 at Betfair.
However it seems punters are also making the same mistake as the bookies, in underestimating a first-season team that increasingly looks as though they are the real deal, with less than 15 percent of the early money wagered on this game so far being on the Wanderers.
But while the Wanderers continue to be underestimated from week to week, their top six and grand final odds are finally beginning to shorten.
They are now at their shortest price all season of $1.51 to make the top six at Betfair, putting them on the fifth line of betting in that particular market. Meanwhile, their premiership odds - as high as $50 at the start of the season - have been slashed to just $10, leaving the Wanderers as equal-fourth favourites with the Glory.
|Wellington and the Central Coast to win their respective matches at Betfair
||Western Sydney to win v Perth Glory at $4.20 at Betfair|
In other games on Thursday, league-leaders and $3.75 premiership favourites Central Coast should continue Sydney FC's miserable season, even on the road at Allianz Stadium.
The Mariners have lost just one game all season and, considering that record and the fact they face a team that have won just three games all season, are good value in this one at $1.73 at sportsbet.com.au and $1.77 with Betfair.
The Sky Blues are $4.50 at both Betstar and sportsbet.com.au and $5.10 with Betfair.
Elsewhere, Wellington should win at home against the struggling Melbourne Heart, who are coming off a shattering last-minute defeat to arch-rivals Melbourne Victory last Saturday.
The Phoenix, who are just one point and one spot above the Heart on the table, are $1.91 at sportsbet.com.au, $1.99 at Betstar and better than even-money odds of $2.04 at Betfair to beat the Heart, who are shortest at $3.70 at Betstar and paying as much as $4.10 with Betfair.
* Note prices subject to change