IT was another profitable weekend for Mark O’Haire’s (@MarkOHaire) Football League tips. With a full programme of Championship action plus a game from League One to look forward to this midweek, can he find some more winners?
Derby v Bournemouth | 19.45
Derby were the neutrals favourite in 2013/14 and the Rams look in buoyant mood now the new season is in full swing. The manner of their heart-breaking play-off final defeat is bound to have hit them hard but Steve McClaren’s side appear to be clicking into gear and that could spell trouble for Bournemouth at Pride Park tonight (or the iPro Stadium, if you prefer)…
McClaren’s charges have surged up the Championship table on the back of an unbeaten eight-game streak in all competitions which has included 14 goals in their last six league outings. The Rams have suffered just the one defeat and despite successive draws in front of their home fans, have recorded 16 victories from 22 games in front of their own fans under the former England boss. So Derby have to be fancied at odds-against.
Bournemouth ended a six-game winless streak with three points against out-of-form Wigan at the weekend but reports suggest they weren’t close to being at their best. But Eddie Howe’s men continue to trouble the scoresheet and should do so again this evening. The Cherries have scored in all nine of their league fixtures this season and netted in 18/23 on the road last season. Throw in the fact that Derby have kept just three clean sheets from nine league matches and the home win with both teams scoring has plenty of appeal at 11/4 with Bet365.
Middlesbrough v Blackpool | 19.45
Middlesbrough showed no ill-effects from their Capital One Cup exit at Liverpool to run Charlton close on Saturday afternoon. In fact, Boro boss Aitor Karanka even had the luxury to rest leading goalscorer Grant Leadbitter as he shuffled his pack.
Expect Leadbitter to return tonight as the hosts go in search of another positive victory and performance. The Teesiders are unbeaten in five league and cup games and have kept a hat-trick of Championship clean sheets now.
Blackpool delivered a brave performance for an hour against Norwich but remain rooted to the bottom of the table with just two points from a possible 27. The Tangerines have scored just four goals in nine games, including only one on their travels.
Jose Riga’s team have now suffered defeats in 14 of their past 19 league outings on the road and with both Middlesbrough’s home league wins this season and six of their last eight victories at the Riverside under Karanka delivered with a clean sheet, we’ll back a home win ‘to nil’ here at 11/10 with BetVictor.
Crewe v Notts County | 19.45
Like Blackpool, it’s been an awful start to the season for Crewe in League One. Tonight they welcome Notts County to Gresty Road looking to arrest and alarming run which has seen the Alex collect just one win and seven defeats from their opening nine matches, conceding a whopping 24 goals.
MK Dons smashed Steve Davis’ side 6-1 before struggling Colchester came away with a 3-0 win on Saturday meaning the hosts have now conceded three goals or more in four of their six home games this season. They’ve also suffered six losses from their last 11 in front of their own fans.
In contrast, Notts County are proving a tough nut to crack under Shaun Derry. The Magpies have lost just once in eight matches now and that came via a 90th-minute winner against table-topping Bristol City. The visitors are unbeaten in five on the road, have kept four clean sheets in eight and have also won on their last four trips to Gresty Road. The away win is 5/4 with BetVictor.