Championship Betting Previews – Approaching the Business End of the Season
Wednesday night sees no fewer than seven Championship fixtures taking place. It’s still all to play for in terms of automatic promotion, the playoffs, and relegation, but with only 10 games left, defeats now could be catastrophic for some. We’ll briefly preview every Wednesday game along with our prediction and betting tip for each one.
Birmingham City vs Millwall
We all know what happened at St Andrews at the weekend and it wasn’t pretty. Birmingham are in danger of letting this season implode, but a win against Millwall would put them right back in the mix for a playoff place. Millwall are fighting for their lives at the bottom but have lost their last four league games.
Millwall have won on their last two visits to St Andrews, but they’ve never won three in a row in their history. It’s a tough match to call, but we think there will be goals. Both Teams to Score at Evens is the one to go for here.
Derby County vs Stoke City
Frank Lampard’s Derby are stuttering slightly at this late stage of the season. After just one win in their last six Championship games, they know a win is a must against a Stoke side who are unbeaten in their last five. The Rams are good at home, though, having lost just once in their last nine on their own turf.
No side has lost fewer games at home this season in the Championship than Derby. Add that to the fact that Stoke haven’t won on the road in their last 10 attempts, points towards a home win. That’s what we’re going with here. Derby to win at odds of 29/20.
Middlesbrough vs Preston North End
Boro welcome an in-form Preston side to the Riverside on Wednesday night aiming to bounce back from their disappointing 2-1 home defeat to Brentford at the weekend.
An automatic spot looks out of reach for the home side now, but with Preston hot on their heels in the race for a playoff spot, they’ll want to keep their record of no league defeat against the Lilywhites since 1972 going.
Preston are unbeaten in 10, which is commendable. However, they just don’t do well away from home against Middlesbrough. Furthermore, Tony Pulis has played Preston 12 times in his managerial career and never lost. We think Boro win this at odds of 23/20.
Norwich City vs Hull City
High-flying Norwich welcome Hull to Carrow Road looking to distance themselves further from the chasing pack as they look to return to the Premier League. Hull have been in great form at home recently, but on the road is a completely different story. It’s five defeats and a draw in their last six away from home in all competitions.
Norwich are overwhelming favourites to win this at 4/7, so we’ll leave that alone as their’s no real value to be had there. It’s well worth sticking in an acca, though, if you are thinking of one for Wednesday.
Norwich -1 on the Asian Handicap looks the better bet at 39/40. You’ll win your bet if Norwich win by two, and the stake’s refunded if they only win by one. Hull have won just once at Carrow Road in their last nine league visits, and we don’t expect that to change here.
Nottingham Forest vs Aston Villa
Villa travel to a ground they’ve not won consecutive league matches at since 1995. It’s a tough ask against a Forest side who have won each of their last four home games in the Championship under new manager Martin O’Neill.
O’Neill’s also only lost one of his 12 matches against Villa as a manager. With just two points separating the two sides, defeat for either could ruin their playoff hopes.
Nottingham Forest have won just one of their last 13 games against Aston Villa. With that in mind, and the fact that neither team will want to lose this one, the draw looks appealing at odds of 5/2.
Queens Park Rangers vs Rotherham United
It’s bad versus worse at Loftus road as QPR entertain Rotherham. The home side have failed to score a single goal in three of their last four league games, whereas Rotherham are the only side in the league who haven’t won an away game all season.
This has the makings of a boring 0-0, but QPR have won their last two home games against Rotherham, scoring nine goals.
Rotherham have only ever beaten QPR away once in their history. That was way back in 1951. Although the home side are struggling for form at the moment, they did manage an impressive 1-0 win three weeks ago at home to Leeds. We think QPR will edge this, so we’re going with the home win at odds of 10/11.
West Bromwich Albion vs Swansea City
West Brom, fresh from their incredible decision to get rid of Darren Moore, which has surprised many in the football world this week, host Swansea at the Hawthorns.
Automatic promotion for the Baggies now looks unlikely, but a playoff spot should really be theirs come the end of the season. In reality, Swansea are not going to go up but they’re not going down either, so there’s no real pressure on them in this one.
Swansea haven’t won in their last four visits to the Hawthorns, but West Brom haven’t won at home in their last six attempts. This could well end in a draw, which was the outcome in this exact fixture last season. Just for a little bit of value, it ended 1-1 that day, so we’re going for the same again at odds of 13/2. If you want to play it a little safe, the draw’s priced at 11/4.