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Match Previews

Championship betting preview

16 August 2014

Millers v Wolves
A clash between two of the newly-promoted sides. Rotherham looked well organised at leading promotion fancies Derby last week, only succumbing to a late Jeff Hendrick goal. Wolves made a winning return, beating Norwich 1-0. They’re 13/8 to make it two-from-two here with the hosts the same price and the draw at 23/10. Goals look assured with the corresponding fixture in League One last season finishing 3-1 and Wolves winning the corresponding fixture 6-4 in April. Over 2.5 goals is a 10/11 chance and both teams to score is 4/6.
Top tip: Both teams to score at 4/6.

Elsewhere in the Championship today...
Birmingham City v Brighton and Hove Albion
Two sides who met with defeat in their opening games, Brighton at home to Sheffield Wednesday and Birmingham City 2-0 away at Middlesbrough. Lee Clark’s men are 21/10 to make home advantage count here with the visitors 13/10 to register a first league success under Sami Hyypia. The draw is a 11/5 chance and with neither side finding the net on the opening weekend a 0-0 stalemate here could prove popular at 13/2.  Clayton Donaldson, who opened the scoring in their Carling Cup victory in midweek, is 7/1 to find the net first again, while the likeliest first scorer for Brighton is Chris O’Grady at 11/2.
Top tip: Under 2.5 goals at 8/15.

Blackpool v Blackburn Rovers
Blackpool’s new-look side fought tenaciously at Nottingham Forest last week and are 18/5 to confound their critics and get an early victory on the board. Blackburn opened the campaign with a home draw against Cardiff and are favourites at 3/4 to win this with the draw 5/2. In the handicap betting (Blackpool getting a one-goal start) the hosts are 10/11 chances with the visitors 21/10 to win by two or more. It’s 8/11 that both sides get on the scoresheet and even-money that at least one of them fails to find the net.
Top tip: 0-0 at half-time at 15/8

Bolton Wanderers v Nottingham Forest
We can’t split these two and it’s 13/8 both teams with the draw at 9/4. Forest opened their season with a cosy 2-0 win over Blackpool, but this contest ought to provide a stiffer test. Bolton are looking to hit back from a thumping at Watford but steadied the ship with an extra-time Capital One Cup victory over Bury in midweek. It’s 8/11 that both teams score in this one and if you’re expecting goals galore, 10/11 there are over 2.5. Recent Forest signing Britt Assombalonga is favourite to score first at 11/2.
Top tip: Both teams to score at 8/11.

AFC Bournemouth v Brentford
The Cherries were the big winners in round one of the Sky Bet Championship progreamme, thumping Huddersfield 4-0. It’s no surprise to see them a warm order at 17/20 for their opening home fixture. However Brentford made an encouraging start to life in the Championship with a 1—1 draw at home to Charlton and are 14/5 – it’s 11/4 the draw. With Brentford having shown their share of firepower in the remarkable midweek Cup game at Dagenham and Redbridge, it’s 4/6 that both sides find the back of the net in this one.
Top tip: Over 3.5 goals at 2/1.

Cardiff City v Huddersfield Town
It certainly proved a dramatic start to the Sky Bet Championship season for the Terriers, a 4-0 home defeat to Bournemouth swiftly followed by the departure of manager Mark Robins. After an extra-time Cup victory in midweek, you can get 4/1 on them to bounce back and win this one against a Cardiff side (4/6) who may well feature in many of the Saturday accumulators. It’s 33/1 that the home side follow in the Cherries week-one footsteps and win this 4-0 while it’s 5/1 Huddersfield win 1-0, 2-0 or 2-1 in the correct score group betting. Favourite to be the first goalscorer is the home side’s Adam Le Fondre at 4/1.
Top tip: Both teams to score at 5/6.

Charlton Athletic v Wigan Athletic
Draws for both of these sides on the opening day, 1-1 for Charlton at Brentford and Wigan 2-2 at home to Reading. They needed a goal in the third minute of injury time to earn a point there having led at the interval. It’s 14/1 that history repeats itself and Wigan lead at half-time before a draw a full-time, while the draw in 90 minutes is 9/4. An offer of 10/11 that both teams score will be popular, while Charlton can be backed at 23/10 and Wigan 5/4 to win the game. The visitors’ Oriel Riera is the 11/2 chance to open the scoring.
Top tip: Both teams to score at 10/11.

Fulham v Millwall
Contrasting fortunes for these two in the first week of the Sky Bet Championship programme – Fulham suffering a 2-1 defeat at Ipswich, while Milwall beat Leeds by two goals to nil. The home side are still among the favourites for promotion and can be backed at 21/20 to win this one with Millwall 13/5 to go two-from-two. It’s 23/10 the draw. Fulham are 5/2 to win the game to nil – and the visitors 11/2 in the same market. Ross McCormack heads the betting in the first goalscorer market at 4/1, while Ricardo Fuller is considered the visitors’ most likely scorer at 15/2.
Top tip: Half-time Draw at even-money.

Leeds United v Middlesbrough
Dave Hockaday will be keen to get some points on the board following his side’s opening day defeat to Millwall. It’s 2/1 that Leeds take all three points while Middlesbrough, 2-0 winners over Birmingham last Saturday, are 13/10. Both sides enjoyed wins in the Capital One Cup in midweek. The corresponding league fixture finished 2-1 to Leeds last season and that’s a 10/1 chance here, but Middlesbrough fans will be looking to Kike to find the net again as he did in midweek and he is an 11/2 chance to be first goalscorer. Leeds’ new midweek signing Billy Sharp can be backed at 3/1 to be the club’s top league scorer at the end of the campaign.
Top tip: Both teams to score in the first half at 7/2.

Norwich City v Watford
Not the ideal start for the Canaries on their return to the Championship with a 1-0 defeat at Wolves and it won’t necessarily get easier here, although they did at least not have the Capital One Cup to worry about in midweek. Watford were 3-0 winners at home to Bolton on the opening Saturday and arrive at Carrow Road full of confidence. It’s 19/10 that they win again with the hosts 13/10 and the draw 12/5. Goals are expected with under 2.5 even money and over 8/11. It’/s 4/7 both find the back of the net, 5/2 that Norwich lead at both half-time and full-time and 7/2 Watford in the same market.
Top tip: Over 3.5 goals at 7/4.

Reading v Ipswich Town
Last-second heartbreak for Reading last Saturday in the 2-2 draw at Wigan and it’s 23/20 they take full points here. Ipswich Town head to the Madejski Stadium with some confidence after beating leading promotion fancies Fulham at Portman Road, although they did suffer a midweek setback against Crawley in the Cup. They’re 5/2 to win again and the draw is 11/5. With both of these sides showing already that they know how to find the net, it’s 3/1 both teams score here and the game ends in a draw. The home side’s Pavel Pogrebnyak is the favourite to score the first goal at 5/1.
Top tip: Pavel Pogrebnyak and David McGoldrick both to score at 11/2.

Sheffield Wednesday v Derby County
Both of these sides were 1-0 winners on the opening day, Derby County at home to Rotherham and Wednesday away at Brighton. The visitors are currently our 7/1 favourites to win the Sky Bet Championship and can be backed at 13/10 to win at Hillsborough. The hosts are 2/1 and the draw 23/10. If the first games are anything to go by goals may be at a premium and it’s 17/2 Wednesday win 1-0 and Derby 7/1 likewise. It’s 3/1 Derby win to nil and 9/2 the hosts achieve the same feat. The visitors’ Chris Martin is the 9/2 favourite to score the first goal in the match, with Gary Madine at 6/1 to shortest-priced player for the home side.
Top tip: Either or both teams not to score at 11/10.

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