MIDWEEK evidence would suggest goals will be the order of the day at Pride Park as Derby County entertain Sheffield Wednesday in the Championship curtain-raiser on Saturday; the Rams will still be scratching their heads as to how they let slip a 5-3 lead against Scunthorpe on Tuesday whilst the Owls put behind them a dreadful 45 minutes at Boundary Park to score four second half goals.
Wednesday remain 25/1 for the Championship Title and 8s for back-to-back promotions and they are 85/40 to make a winning start in the East Midlands with Derby County 11/8 and the draw 23/10. The Rams haven’t lost in their last eight games against the Owls who have gone the small matter of 478 minutes without finding the back of the Derby net; given Scunny hit five on Tuesday the travelling Owls army will be more than optimistic of a goal on Saturday!
Three or more goals in the game is 10/11 with ourselves at BetVictor with two or fewer at 4/5; I fancy a 2-2 draw which is priced at 14/1 as the Owls bid to extend their unbeaten run of 14 from the end of the 2012/13 campaign.
The Blades will be glad that there is no the prospect of another penalty shoot out until the FA Cup 1st Round in November and they remain 11/2 favourites for the League 1 Title ahead of the visit of Shrewsbury.
Danny Wilson was less than impressed with the performance against the Brewers and will look for a better show against Shrewsbury whose promotion last year was down to their home form (unbeaten) given they lost 10 of their 23 games on the road.
We won’t get rich backing the Blades at 11/20 to tame the Shrews with the visitors at 21/4 and the draw at 31/10; Danny Wilson’s side are 11/10 to lead at both half time and full time and the manager will be keen on a fast start to the new campaign.
Barnsley remain 11/8 favourites for relegation despite their extraordinary win at Rochdale last weekend and the signing of Marlon Harewood on a free has hardly had punters racing to back the Reds for the visit of Middlesbrough on Saturday.
The Reds are 11/5 to make a winning start with Boro 5/4 and the draw at 23/10; Harewood is 7/1 the same price as Chris Dagnall with Craig Davies 6s to grab the opener at Oakwell. I’m not convinced about Boro who are 6s for promotion and think the Reds will get at least a point despite the fact that they only picked up two points from the last 21 on offer last term.
Rovers begin life back in League 1 in the Black Country with a visit to Walsall and Rovers are 29/20 favourites to make a winning start with the Saddlers 19/10 and a draw at 23/10; Walsall have scored once in their last five home games against Rovers and if they maintain that sequence that might not be enough against Rovers although Dean Saunders’s side looked toothless for large periods of the game against League new boys York.
New signing Billy Paynter is 6/1 to net the opener at the Bescot and this is a game Rovers must look to pick up all three points from although the hosts only lost one of their last eight at home last season.
Chesterfield (12s for the Title) are 13/10 for three points at AFC Wimbledon (21/10) with the draw at 12/5; this is the first time the sides have ever met and it wont be easy for the Spireites given the Dons won five of their last six at home last term scoring at least two in each success.
For your weekend odds check out betvictor.com