SHEFFIELD Wednesday couldn’t make it past Championship Blackpool in the fourth round replay but they can now concentrate their energies on the season’s primary objective of promotion from League One.
The Owls were able to close the gap at the top of the division last weekend when they came from behind to beat Yeovil and they make the long journey to Devon at the weekend back in an automatic promotion place although they remain seven points behind leaders Charlton.
BetVictor remain unconvinced about the Owls ability to overtake the Addicks and make Gary Megson’s side 8/1 to lift the title although they remain a shade of odds on at 10/11 to be playing in the Championship next term. Saturday’s opponents Exeter have struggled for goals all season with only 24 in 29 in the league all season and they are without a win since November at St James Park.
Exeter are without a goal in four games and this is a game the Owls really ought to win, but it should be noted that Charlton only just gained the points against the Grecians 1-0 a fortnight ago and the hosts are in a relegation battle although our price of 11/8 for them to drop down suggests we think they’ll make it, just!
Wednesday are a shade of odds against at 21/20 to take all three points with the draw 9/4 and it is 5/2 for a home win for Exeter. Gary Madine scored a brace when the sides met earlier this season and another 3-0 win for the Owls is 16/1 with Madine 5/1 to score the opener.
United find themselves four points behind Wednesday but with two games in hand. They cannot afford any slip ups against a Wycombe side who beat the elements, and Tranmere at Adams Park, last weekend to lift themselves out of the bottom four.
This is a game the hosts must win and, whilst we won’t get rich backing the Blades at 2/5, I can’t see past a home win and revenge for the 1-0 loss at Wycombe in September. One of these days the Blades (without a draw in 14 games) are going to share the spoils but that ought not to be at Bramall Lane this weekend. Wanderers are 7/1 for a shock and the draw is a 17/5 shot. Make no mistake Wycombe were fortunate to hold on against Tranmere last week and are 8/13 for the drop this season having been thrashed 5-2 at Brentford in their last away game.
Ched Evans is 3/1 to net the opener and of more interest might be the 10/11 quote for the Blades to lead at both half time and full time. Danny Wilson’s side are 9/1 for the League 1 title and 11/10 to be promoted at the end of the season.
The big game of the weekend is at Old Trafford where Manchester United “entertain” Liverpool; United will go off favourites (5/6) to gain revenge for their recent FA Cup defeat but we have opened a market on whether or not Patrice Evra and Luis Suarez will shake hands before the game, if they both make the starting XI’s, and bet 5/2 No and 2/7 yes.
England didn’t impress anyone at Murrayfield last weekend but they are long odds (1/5) on to beat Italy on Saturday. We bet even money the two sides on the handicap with England giving the Azzurri an 8-point start; I don’t think they will be able to in Rome I’m afraid.
For all odds check out Betvictor.com; follow me on twitter @VictorChandler