EFL fan Tom Love (@TomLove_18) has scoured the dozens of League Two specials markets and shared his best bets ahead of the 2020/21 big kick-off.
WLB Season Preview 2020/21 | League Two: Specials
Morecambe are always chalked up as one of the favourites to drop back into non-league and they continue to defy the doubters. Club legend and former centre half Jim Bentley did outstanding work to keep the Shrimps afloat with on a minuscule budget by fostering a strong team spirit and togetherness, aided a lot of the time by a flying start to seasons.
Bentley left to go to Fylde just down the road and was replaced by former Ross County and Plymouth gaffer Derek Adams last November. I was surprised the coastal club could attract such a manager and he’s now had a full summer to rejig his squad and bring in his own players.
I’ve been impressed with the business Adams has conducted. Bradford fans may have been glad to see the back of Kelvin Mellor who didn’t have the best of spells at Valley Parade, however Adams knows how to get the best out of the versatile defender with him making the 2017 PFA Team of the Year whilst the pair were together at Home Park.
The experienced Ben Pringle adds quality in midfield and a wicked delivery. Toumani Diagouraga remains at the club and he provides strong ball retention qualities as well as physical presence in the middle of the pitch. Loan duo Adam Phillips and Ryan Cooney are back for another spell from Burnley after both impressed last season, particularly midfielder Phillips.
Creativity can also come from Aaron Wildig and Carlos Mendes Gomes who broke onto the scene last season. Up front there is now depth with Liam McAlinden, A-Jay Leitch-Smith, Cole Stockton and Jordan Slew all competing for a starting berth.
It was defensively where the Shrimps really struggled last season, they conceded two or more goals in way too many games and that is the worry. There’s been three or four additions to the backline though which should make them more competitive.
Shrimps no soft touch under Adams
Adams can be quite a divisive figure but lets just look at his achievements in his relatively short spell in management. He oversaw a 34-game unbeaten run at Ross County to see them sail to the Championship title and in the top division he steered the Staggies to a fifth-place finish and just one point off European football. That is a remarkable feat.
The Scot then went down south to Devon and led the Pilgrims to a play-off final where they lost out to Wimbledon but he showed resolve by coming back the next season and sealing promotion to League One. The club went from strength-to-strength and overcame the step up superbly with a seventh-place finish.
He knows how to get his sides winning and I’m happy to overlook the large majority of the strange 2019/20 campaign. It’s a different side now in a pretty poor division and with a manager who’s proven himself at this level.
Morecambe don’t attract big crowds as it is so the lack of fans may actually benefit them compared to other sides. I think they will finish above the majority of the sides in this division and the 4/1 quotes on Morecambe to finish in the top-half of the table just looks too big to me.
The Shrimps are favourites for the drop and I’m convinced the bookies have got this one wrong. I’m also going to have a go on the 200/1 on Morecambe for the title and back it each-way with SkyBet who are paying out four places at a fifth of the odds. Bet365 go 50/1 on the same bet and offer worse each-way terms.
League Two 2020/21 – Morecambe to finish in the top-half (4/1 William Hill)
League Two 2020/21 – Morecambe to win outright (200/1 each-way SkyBet)