A place in the FA Cup third round is up for grabs this weekend. Mark O’Haire (@MarkOHaire) picks out three bets to consider.
Accrington Stanley v Yeovil Town | Saturday 15.00
In-form Exeter ended Accrington’s excellent recent run on home soil. Stanley had won four on the spin at the Crown Ground before last Friday’s 3-2 reverse but there’s still plenty to like about John Coleman’s men this weekend.
The League Two side can be backed at 21/10 with BetVictor to better Yeovil and it’s a price well worth taking. Accy have secured seven wins from their last nine games played in front of their home fans and that spree includes knocking out League One’s away-day specialists Notts County in the first round.
Stanley have scored twice or more in their last five outings at the Crown Ground with the goals being spread around seven different goalscorers.
Yeovil have just four wins to their name since August, have lost four of their last six on the road and have failed to score in seven of their last 11 matches. There’s no way I can be with the Glovers so side with unfashionable Accy at a handsome price.
Sheffield United v Plymouth Argyle | Saturday 15.00
Plenty of Football League fans will be trumpeting Plymouth’s chances of causing an upset at Bramall Lane on Saturday. But there’s reason enough to swerve the Match Odds in this game and take a punt on Under 2.5 Goals at 5/6 (BetVictor).
Firstly, not since 2007 have the Blades been knocked out of the FA Cup by lower-league opposition. And secondly, Argyle have been eliminated in their last six FA Cup games against higher-division opponents.
John Sheridan’s boast the Football League’s meanest defence (11 goals conceded and 10/19 clean sheets) but they’ve only managed two road wins from nine in League Two action (W2-D2-L5). So focusing on that fantastic defence is key.
Plymouth are well capable of keeping this cup clash tight and frustrating Nigel Clough’s hosts and that should hopefully lead to an Under 2.5 Goals winner – it’s a bet that’s banked in 14/19 of Argyle’s league encounters this season as well as in eight of 10 away from home in all competitions.
The Blades have also seen fewer than three goals fairly often. Their last eight League One games have failed to break the 2.5 barrier and 7/10 at Bramall Lane have also banked for Unders backers.
Bury v Luton Town | Saturday 15.00
This showdown pits together one of League Two’s most in-form sides at one of League Two’s least in-form sides. Bury might have the pedigree to go on and win the league but right now they’re suffering from a serious bout of amnesia.
The Shakers have lost confidence, shape and even manager David Flitcroft seems to have lost his philosophy in recent weeks. It’s four defeats on the trot for Bury now with Newport along with strugglers Dagenham and Tranmere both leaving Gigg Lane with maximum points.
Yet Flitcroft’s men are just 5/4 to see off Luton on Saturday. The price is almost solely made up on Bury’s potential and it mean punters can oppose the out-of-form hosts and profit from a Hatters team led by lower-league wizard John Still.
Luton have W11-D2-L2 of their last 15 games keeping eight clean sheets. They were the better team when losing at Burton in their only league loss since mid-September and fielded a number of squad players in their Johnstone’s Paint Trophy exit to Crawley.
Bury haven’t won an FA Cup second round game since 2007 and the Hatters are primed to extend that streak on Saturday. BetVictor make Luton +0.25 on the Asian Handicap a 20/19 shot and I’m getting involved – with this selection we’ll win half our stake should the game end in a draw and bank a full payout if the visitors progress in 90 minutes.
Accrington Stanley v Yeovil Town – Accrington to win (21/10 BetVictor)
Sheffield United v Plymouth Argyle – Under 2.5 Goals (5/6 BetVictor)
Bury v Luton Town – Luton +0.25 Asian Handicap (20/19 BetVictor)