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Parramatta Eels v Canberra Raiders

Saturday, May 20, 7:30pm (AEST), ANZ Stadium, Sydney

Both of these sides will be desperate for the two competition points when they run out on to ANZ Stadium on Saturday night. The Eels were embarrassed 48-10 by the Roosters last week and face an uphill battle here, with chief playmaker Corey Norman ruled out for 6 weeks with a knee injury. The Eels have finally got their man in Mitchell Moses from the Tigers and it seems likely that he’ll partner Clint Gutherson in the halves. Bevan French has been named to return from injury in the No.1 jersey. The Raiders were shocked by the Knights last week and you can bet that coach Ricky Stuart would have torn shreds off them at training this week. They’ll welcome back Josh Papalii and will need all hands on deck if they are to avoid four straight losses.
The Raiders have won 8 of their last 10 against Eels with the Raiders posting 28-plus in 4 of their last 5. The Raider won this year’s Round 5 clash in Canberra 30-18. The last five matches between these teams have topped 42 points.
Parramatta had put together three straight wins before a humiliating 48-10 defeat to the Sydney Roosters where their effort was as poor as their execution. A significant injury to half Corey Norman only exacerbated the loss. The Eels rank 12th in attack and 11th in defence and have struggled to build any notable momentum this year. Canberra enter this off a loss to Newcastle, just the Knights’ third since the start of the 2016 season, so that says it all. The Raiders have now lost  three straight, all against teams outside the Top 6. The famed Raiders attack has scored over 20 just three times this year and Canberra are now down to 10th on the ladder with a 4-6 record.
Key Matchup
Nathan Brown v Josh Papalii. They are both explosive ball runners and the leaders of their respective packs. Brown has made the No.13 Eels jersey his own and gets through a mountain of work week-on-week. Beware of Big Papa! He’ll have a point to prove after he was stood down by the club last week and is a massive in for the Raiders. He’s a wrecking ball and is impossible to stop, with 15 offloads and 28 tackle-breaks through nine matches this season.
Stats That Matter
Parramatta are 5-5 ATS with a 6-4 under record while Canberra are 6-4 ATS with a 5-5 total number. Canberra have won 8 of their last 10 against Parramatta with the Raiders posting 28-plus in 4 of their last 5. The last five matches between these teams have topped 42 points. The over is 40-27 when a home team conceded 40-plus last start. The Raiders have covered 16 of their last 22 night games while the Eels have covered just 14 of their last 36 with the over 25-11.
Final Thoughts
Both of these sides are struggling for form, making it difficult to trust either side in head to head or line betting. As already mentioned, the last five matches between the Eels and Raiders have topped 42 points. The game total is set at 38.5 for this contest, making the overs the recommended play by The Wolf.
How It’s Shaping Up
Canberra by 6
Best Bet
Over 38.5 ($1.88)

Other Recommended Bets
Canberra 1-12 ($3)

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