WE’RE back to a full compliment of Football League action this weekend. Mark O’Haire (@MarkOHaire) digests the best bets from the coupon.
Charlton Athletic v Millwall | Saturday 15.00
We’re 17 games into the Championship season and I doubt many of us would have had Charlton up in eighth, just a point off the play-offs with only two defeats to their name?
It’s been an excellent start for Bob Peeters and his men. They upset the odds again before the international break, beating Reading 1-0 away. But it’s their home form that deserves most respect.
Unbeaten in the Championship at the Valley this season with a W4-D4-LO record – Derby, Middlesbrough, Watford and Wolves have already visited and come away winless, yet they’re a massive 7/4 (Betfred) to beat Millwall on their own patch this weekend!
It’s a massive price. I’ve taken the insurance of the Draw No Bet market at 19/20 (William Hill) – still a huge price when you consider this team is unbeaten at home and have only lost twice in 17 fixtures!
After winning three of their first five games, Millwall have been muddled – it’s now just one win in 12 for the Lions and some fans are growing frustrated with Ian Holloway’s constant tactical tinkering and selection decisions.
In that 12 game spell they’ve conceded two or more goals in eight outings and they’re really struggling defensively, which won’t help against a Charlton side that don’t give too much away.
I just think Charlton deserve to be solid favourites for this game. Millwall have won once away from home this season, have won just once in 12 and are up against a side brimming with confidence.
Colchester United v Coventry City | Saturday 15.00
Is anyone brave enough to take a view on who’ll win this game? I’m certainly not. Both teams are level on 17 points, a slither above the League One relegation zone and shipping goals for fun.
But what I can suggest is a punt on goals. Over 2.5 Goals has been chalked up at 5/6 with SkyBet and that’s definitely of interest. After all, bad defences should breathe goals, right?
Taking Colchester to start with, 12/17 fixtures in 2014/15 have featured Over 2.5 Goals including eight of their last 10. When hosting, six of their eight games have also broken the 2.5 barrier.
And it gets better too. Tony Humes’ team have seen Both Teams To Score bank in their last seven outings and their 17 league games are averaging 3 goals-per-game. They’ve hit two or more goals in eight of their last 11 and conceded at least twice in four of their last seven. Woof!
I’ve written about Coventry a few times recently and their wretched defensive record. Last weekend they only leaked the once against Notts County and still ended up on the losing side.
But previously, the Sky Blues had seen Over 2.5 Goals in the six proceeding games. It’s a similar story on the road with five of their eight away from Coventry seeing three goals or more.
I can’t trust either side to keep a clean sheet – Steven Pressley’s charges have scored in all bar two matches on their travels and haven’t shut any side out since the 5 September – they’ve leaked at least twice in eight of their last 10 league games.
Get with the goals – 5/6 on Over 2.5 with SkyBet!
Notts County v Yeovil | Saturday 15.00
My love affair with Shaun Derry and Notts County must be extended. Sorry if you’re sick to death with my gushing praise in favour of the QPR fans favourite but what he’s achieving at Meadow Lane is quite remarkable.
Yes, last weekend we backed the Magpies to score twice at Coventry at 2/1 and we ended up with a loser. But County made it six wins from seven League One games and have now lost just twice in 17 in all competitions.
There’s a real buzz around the club. Derry and Greg Abbott have worked wonders – working really hard to bring the right characters into the club. Roy Carroll was a fine example of that last weekend with his commitment and the future looks bright for a bash at a top-six finish.
They’re probably a star striker short from a serious challenge but they’re a massive price again at home this weekend, as they host bottom-of-the-table Yeovil. The home record of W3-D2-L3 is of slight concern but the fact the Magpies have kept four clean sheets from their last seven fills me with confidence.
Yeovil can’t buy a goal, let alone a result. The Glovers have taken just two points from a possible 24 now and Gary Johnson’s future remains up in the air. You feel a negative result in Nottingham could be the end of his second spell in charge.
That rotten scoring run now reads zero goals in their last four games and they’ve failed to net in six of their last eight too. On the road, Yeovil have lost five of their eight and that’s despite facing just one top-half team away from home.
With County sitting in fourth, I can see this being another dour result for the Greens. Take advantage of William Hill’s delightfully generous 7/5 on a home win.
Charlton v Millwall – Charlton draw no bet (19/20 William Hill)
Colchester v Coventry – Over 2.5 Goals (5/6 SkyBet)
Notts County v Yeovil – Notts County to win (7/5 William Hill)