WALSALL reached Wembley for the first time in their history on Tuesday night, but who will join them in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy? Chris Graham (@chrisgraham79) gives us his view.
Bristol City v Gillingham | Thursday 19:45 | Sky Sports 1
This game has an identical shape to the Northern Final of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy on Tuesday night with the team at home protecting a strong lead.
While Tuesday night’s game saw the higher-ranked side playing catch up, this one sees the better team in front and playing at home. Why the hell did Sky choose this game over Tuesday’s night’s edgy, pulsating, erm, 0-0 draw against Walsall and Preston?!
Anyway let’s be positive and try and form a view here. League One second place side Bristol City hold a 4-2 advantage from the first leg and are best price 4/9 with Coral to win here again. Should they? Yeah. Are they worth backing at 4/9? Not on your nelly!
Surely, surely, you have to factor in a wee bit of complacency here? City have just been locked in battle with West Ham in the FA Cup. Wouldn’t that game not have excited them more? They’re 23 points clear and 14 positions above Gillingham in League One and of course have a two goal advantage in this tie.
Steve Cotteril’s side have lost just once at home in the league this season and have beaten the Gills three times out of three this campaign. The players must be sorting out the Wembley tickets for their loved ones already!
What about Gillingham though? Well they gave Peter Taylor a wonderful New Year present by telling him to do one! Since Taylor’s departure they’ve lost three and won two. Perhaps crucially those two wins came in their last two matches and it might be that this odd four man caretaker manager set up is having an effect.
Betfair have priced up Gillingham at 8/1 to win this fixture and I think that’s a huge price in the circumstances of the game. Would they be that price in the league? Isn’t it very rare to see prices like that kicking about when Football League sides from the same division clash? Isn’t the onus on the Kent side? Hey, maybe this caretaker set up is working? Jesus, Bristol City really might be complacent?!
Questions…questions…questions. And a few hurdles to overcome for sure but I’m more than happy to place a modest wager on Gillingham at a plumped-up phat 8/1. It’s simply too big.
Bristol City v Gillingham – Gillingham to win (8/1 Betfair)