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English Championship Preview

Football League Championship
We head into week 5 of the Championship with Cardiff and Ipswich Town the only unbeaten sides
Cardiff and Ipswich Town remain the only unbeaten sides in the Championship as we head into the final set of fixtures before the dreaded international break. The two sides are separated by only goal difference at the summit of the Championship log, with the Welsh outfit holding a two-goal superiority over the Tractor Boys. While Ipswich and Cardiff have been racking up wins for fun, much-hyped Aston Villa managed to claim their first victory of the season as they beat Norwich 4-2. The win was vital for the Villains who will be hoping to be one of the sides in the hunt for promotion come May 2018.

Friday 25 August

7/10 Hull City | Draw 26/10 | Bolton 37/10 (20:45)

Hull and Bolton will kick off this weekend’s proceedings when they collide at the KCOM Stadium. The hosts have enjoyed a mixed bag of a start to their 2017/18 campaign, winning once, drawing once and losing their other two. They come into this one off the back of a 2-1 away defeat to QPR which saw them drop to 14th on the log. Bolton have endured an even more difficult start to the campaign and have only two points to show from four matches. Both teams are conceding at an average well above a goal per game which is why I’m going to be backing the Both Teams to Score – Yes – Market at a solid 9/10. Yes, Bolton have struggled for goals but they should be able to find the net against a struggling Tigers defence.

14/10 Bristol City | 22/10 | Aston Villa 37/20 (20:45)

Friday’s second and final fixture sees 11th-placed Bristol City take on 16th-placed Aston Villa. The visitors finally broke their winless streak as they saw off Norwich 4-2 at Villa Park. And while coach Steve Bruce will be a touch annoyed with his defenders for letting in two goals, he’ll be ecstatic with his team for managing to find the net four times. The hosts, while unable to get the win, impressed against Middlesbrough last weekend as they went down by a 1-0 scoreline in a game they had every chance of winning. I like the Villa win here. Last week’s victory would have been a massive confidence boost and I can see them making it back-to-back wins. Get on the away side at a very handy 37/20.

Saturday 26 August

11/10 Birmingham | 9/4 | Reading 23/10 (16:00)

Birmingham City will be looking to bounce back from their 2-1 defeat away to Burton Albion when they play host to a Reading side that went down 1-0 to Preston in gameweek 4. The hosts currently occupy 15th place on the table while Reading are three places behind them in 18th. I’m going to avoid the straight win market here and instead back the Both Teams to Score – Yes – market. Birmingham haven’t been that defensively resolute while Reading have shipped a plethora of goals.

11/4 Burton Albion | 24/10 | Sheffield Wednesday 19/20 (16:00)

Mid-table Sheffield Wednesday make the trip to Burton Albion this week to take on a side who have conceded eight goals in just four games. The visitors have been resolute at the back this term conceding just three goals in their opening four fixtures. I can see Wednesday’s resolute defence seeing them to a victory over a Burton side who are conceding at a staggering rate. Get on the way win at 19/20.

19/10 Milwall | 23/10 | Norwich 13/10 (16:00)

Norwich will be looking for a far more polished performance than the one they produced in gameweek 4 when they take on Milwall at The Den. The Lions come into this one off the back of a 0-0 draw with Bristol, while Norwich make the trip off a 4-2 defeat to Villa. The Canaries were in decent nick before last week’s defeat and I fully expect them to bounce back here. Get on the away at a solid 13/10!

28/10 Barnsley | 5/2 | Sunderland 9/10 (16:00)

Our next fixture sees 12th-placed Sunderland take on 20th-placed Barnsley. The hosts come into this one off the back of a 1-0 home defeat to Sheffield United while Sunderland went down 2-0 to Leeds at home in the last round. I’m not too keen on the straight win market here as Sunderland are too short at 9/10. Instead, I’m going to back the Additional Totals – Over 3.5 Goals – at a very, very kind 18/10.

17/20 Middlesbrough | 5/2 | Preston 34/10 (16:00)

Middlesbrough welcome Preston to the Riverside this Saturday, in a match the hosts will be aiming to pick up three points from. The Tynesiders currently occupy ninth spot on the log and come into this one off the back of a 2-1 away defeat to Nottingham Forest, while Preston sit in seventh and make the trip off the back of an impressive 1-0 win over Reading. The bookies have ‘Boro installed as heavy favourites but I think Preston could give them a real run for their money. It’s a bit of a speculator but I’m going to tip the draw here – Preston have been sound defensively this term. Get on at 5/2!

31/20 Brentford | 23/10 | Wolves 23/20 (16:00)

Cellar-dwellers Brentford host Wolverhampton Wanderers this Saturday in a game that’s likely to be rather one-sided. The hosts are yet to win a game this term and have only managed to claim one point from their first four outings. Wolves, on the other hand, have won three of their four fixtures and currently occupy third position on the log. I’m on the away win here and you should be too – get on at 23/20!

8/10 Cardiff | 5/2 | QPR 33/10 (16:00)

Pacesetters Cardiff play host to QPR in a game the hosts will be desperate to win to ensure their hot streak continues. The Welsh outfit have won four on the trot with their most recent victory coming away at Wolves. QPR also come into this one off the back of a win as they beat Hull City by a 2-1 scoreline in gameweek four. Cardiff really are in scintillating form at the minute and should be backed for the win with confidence.

15/10 Sheffield United | 22/10 | Derby County 17/10 (16:00)

10th-placed Sheffield United play hosts to Derby County in what should be a hotly contested affair. The Blades come into this one off the back of a 1-0 home victory over Barnsley while Derby make the trip after beating Bolton by a 2-1 scoreline. Both sides are in good form but I think home ground advantage will see United to a win here.

21/20 Ipswich Town | 47/20 | Fulham 12/10 (16:00)

Ipswich Town, like Cardiff, will be looking to make it a clean sweep heading into the international break when they take on Fulham this gameweek. The Tractor Boys easily dispatched Brentford in gameweek 4, running out 2-0 victors. Fulham were considerably less impressive last week as the drew 0-0 with Reading. I can’t see anything but a home win here – get on at 21/20!

15/10 Nottingham Forest | 9/4 | Leeds United 33/20 (18:30)

Nottingham Forest and Leads United have the honour of taking us into the first international break of the year. The hosts currently occupy fourth spot on the log and have won three of their four fixtures, while Leeds sit fifth and are one point behind this weekend’s hosts. I’m avoiding the straight win market here as these sides look evenly matched on paper. Instead, my money is on the Totals – Over 2.5 – market as both teams have scored and conceded a boatload of goals.

TREBLE @ 56/10
Cardiff Win 8/10
Ipswich Town Win  21/20
Nottingham Forest vs Leeds Over 2.5 Goals – Yes 8/10

Written by Darry Worthington