GEORGE Elek (@georgeelek) fills in for Mark O’Haire as he picks out his Tuesday Football League fancies.
Sheffield United v Millwall | Tuesday 19:45
Champions elect Sheffield United can inflict more misery on Neil Harris’ Millwall at Bramall Lane on Tuesday evening. On Saturday, the play-off chasing Lions had a huge chance to make ground on the top six, but were dealt a late blow by lowly Swindon Town as they were defeated 1-0.
They have won just one away league game since the end of November, and this run of poor form on their travels looks unlikely to end, in this crucial trip to the league’s best team.
Their failure to score against Swindon is of huge concern; The Robins had failed to keep a clean sheet in the previous six games and have been porous at the back all season.
In their 18 away league games this season, Millwall have conceded 32 goals at a rate of 1.78 per game. With Sheffield United free-scoring at home, the heavily odds-on quotes for a Blades victory seem justified.
The 7/4 on the home team to win to nil, however, looks the best value. Millwall have failed to score in five of their last 10 away games, emphasising this weakness on the road.
Chris Wilder’s team have not been the meanest at the back recently, but they kept the free-scoring Bolton at bay at the end of February ,and have only conceded one goal from open play in their last four games at Bramall Lane, with Ricky Holmes’ strike for Charlton coming from a direct free-kick.
The defeat to Swindon will have hit morale hard at Millwall, and it seems unlikely that they will bounce back here. Sheffield United, on the other hand, can take another step to their inevitable League One title.
Accrington v Cambridge | Tuesday 19:45
Cambridge United look like a team who have forgotten how to score and, with any slim play-off ambitions fading fast, this looks a trend that could well continue at Accrington.
Shaun Derry’s team have scored four goals in their previous four games, which, on paper, doesn’t look too disastrous. Three of these goals, however, came in the 3-0 win against free-falling Carlisle, of which two were converted from the spot.
Medy Elito scored all four of Cambridge’s strikes in this period, but he limped off with a hamstring injury after scoring in the 1-0 win over Cheltenham. He sat our of their 0-0 draw with Stevenage on the weekend, and looks set to miss this fixture as well.
The former Dagenham & Redbridge winger has never been prolific in the past, so this reliance on him for goals is a sign of Cambridge’s lack of firepower. Luke Berry a central midfielder is their main goal threat with 17 games in all competitions this season.
Accrington are more than competent at the back, having kept three clean sheets in their last six games. They have also been breached more than once on just a solitary occasion in their last nine, away at top of the table Doncaster.
Having won five and drawn five of their last ten games, John Coleman’s team are finding the kind of form that saw them come so close to automatic promotion last season.
Their inability to turn dominance into wins, in recent weeks against Yeovil, causes fair concern in backing them to win the fixture at 5/4, but the 2/1 on Cambridge to draw yet another blank looks worth getting behind.
Such a blunt attack coming up against a defence bang in form will likely see Cambridge frustrated again, and the 15/2 about a 1-0 win for the home side is a tentative second selection.
Sheffield United v Millwall – Sheffield United to win to nil (7/4 Bet365)
Accrington v Cambridge – Under 0.5 Cambridge Goals (2/1 Coral)
Accrington v Cambridge – Accrington to win 1-0 (15/2 BetVictor)
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