DESPITE the wealth of international football taking place this weekend there’s still a busy programme of action from League One and League Two. We got Mark O’Haire (@MarkOHaire) to share his three favourite bets.
Crawley v Peterborough | 15.00
After an electric start to the season, Peterborough have gone off the boil a bit. Just one league win in five (W1 D2 L2) now for Darren Ferguson’s men although they are still nestled into third place.
The Posh have hit just four goals during that spell and last weekend’s 2-2 draw at home to Oldham saw both strikes coming from long-range whilst Latics boss Lee Johnson was quick to admit he was chuffed to come away with a point despite not needing to be at their best.
To me, that reflects badly on Posh, especially considering London Road is supposed to be their fortress. They’ve long had issues being consistent on their travels and since the start of the 2013/14 season they’ve W12 D2 L14 of their 28 fixtures on the road. Interestingly, those 14 losses have come in their last 22 away, including back-to-back defeats at Gillingham and Yeovil.
So I’m keen to oppose Peterborough this weekend. Crawley can be backed at a hunky 12/5 with Ladbrokes but it’s the 11/8 Draw No Bet price that interests with BetVictor. The Red Devils have lost just eight of their 28 home fixtures since the start of last season and have bagged consecutive home wins ‘to nil’ at the Broadfield Stadium.
Gavin Horsfall spoke recently about the work John Gregory’s been doing on the training pitch and it seems to be working in their favour. Crawley are finding ways to pinch goals whilst keeping things very tight and organised defensively. It’s one defeat in five now (at Preston) and 3/5 clean sheets.
It’ll be a real clash of styles but I don’t think we can afford to miss out opposing Peterborough away here, especially when we’ve got 11/8 from BetVictor on Crawley at home with the draw on our side.
Shrewsbury v Cheltenham | 15.00
I’ve written a few words on Shrewsbury and Cheltenham in our Weekend Debrief in recent weeks and there’s a bet that suits when they meet on Saturday. Starting with Cheltenham; seeing loan star Kobi Arthur head back to Birmingham was a big blow – he made a real impact in the short time he was with the Robins and they’ve really been lacking something going forward in his absence.
Cheltenham have not won a league game since August and failed to net in 4/6 fixtures since that home victory over Hartlepool. After starting the new campaign with back-to-back away wins Mark Yates side have taken just a point from their most recent three and failed to net in all three.
But what’s constant with the Robins this season is the sheer lack of games involving both teams scoring – 7/11 League Two matches (including 4/5 away) have seen punters backing Both Teams To Score end up with a losing wager.
I spoke about Shrewsbury’s woeful record on the road last week but at the New Meadow they’re a force – 13 points from 15 available. That five-game spell includes four clean sheets too meaning only 1/5 home outings have featured a winning Both Teams To Score bet. Include their rotten away record and overall they’ve seen just 3/11 games feature both sides netting.
So the obvious solution here is to oppose Both Teams To Score. Backing ‘No’ in the BTTS market is 4/5 with SkyBet and if you wanted extra inspiration, 14/16 Cheltenham away games now have featured Under 2.5 Goals!
Wimbledon v Bury | 15.00
Wimbledon scooped Chris Graham a chunky midweek winner in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy and that win over bitter rivals MK Dons will no doubt fill Neil Ardley’s men with plenty of confidence as they prepare to tackle table-toppers Bury. But I’m more concerned with the goals markets as both teams trends point to a high-scoring encounter at Kingsmeadow.
That midweek result was the 10th occasion in 15 matches this season a Wimbledon fixture has featured Over 2.5 Goals and I can’t help but feel Paddy Power have been a little too generous by offering us 11/10 on a repeat this Saturday.
The Dons have only failed to net once in those 15 fixtures and 4/5 home outings have broken the two-goal barrier. Matt Tubbs has been in excellent scoring form since his move and Adebayo Akinfenwa has also found his shooting boots recently.
Bury are a point clear at the top and before they went to Exeter I spoke about the high-scoring nature of their games. The Shakers surprisingly lost that match but remain in good form. In fact, David Flitcroft’s charges have scored 2+ goals in 9/13 matches in all competitions now.
And backing Over 2.5 Goals would have handed you a winner in six of Bury’s last eight League Two fixtures. So it’s nice to see the Overs bet priced up at odds-against (11/10 Paddy Power), especially so when Both Teams To Score is no bigger than 5/6 (BetVictor).
Crawley v Peterborough – Crawley Draw No Bet (11/8 BetVictor)
Shrewsbury v Cheltenham – Both Teams To Socre “No” (4/5 Skybet)
Wimbledon v Bury – Over 2.5 Goals (11/10 Paddy Power)