Owls to stay in promotion mix

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DAVE Jones was at Spotland last week to see Sheffield Wednesday draw against Rochdale but the new boss didn’t actually take full charge of the Owls until the midweek clash with Bury and he made an instant impact as Wednesday thumped the Shakers 4-1.

That result, while Sheffield United were losing at Walsall, has thrust the Owls back into the mix and Skybet now make them 7/4 to go up.

Bookies expect Wednesday’s chances to improve this weekend too, BetVictor quoting Jones’ charges at 20/23 to get the better of Bournemouth, Ladbrokes’ 4/1 outsiders, as the pair face off at Hillsborough. Stan James offer odds of 13/5 for the spoils to be shared but the Cherries arrive on the back of four straight defeats so it’s hard to see past Wednesday, who are 8/1 via bet365 to gain revenge for their loss at Dean Court, by notching twice without reply themselves.

Along similar lines, Paddy Power price the Owls at a tempting 9/4 in the handicaps, where they kick-off a goal in arrears and it’s 2/1 with William Hill for Jones’ troops to again be in front at the end of each half, as they were on Tuesday.

Just one point ahead of their rivals in second, United have drifted to 8/11 via Blue Square in the promotion betting following the loss at the Bescot Stadium and tomorrow face a tricky trip to Brentford. Betfred rate the Blades at 9/5 to suffer a third straight defeat and it’s 23/10 (Coral) for Danny Wilson’s side to stop the rot by earning a point at Griffin Park, where Partybets quote a 1-1 scoreline at 11/2. At this point however, with other teams gaining ground, United are desperate for a maximum haul and bet365 make them 17/10 to grab one.

Nevertheless, a close affair seems inevitable and for those in agreement Boylesports mark 7/2 against an away victory by a one-goal margin while Blue Square offer odds of 9/1 for the Blades to register a much-needed 2-1 triumph.

In the Championship, Barnsley have won just one of their last seven and they’re a chunky 9/1 (BetVictor) to revive their fortunes at league leaders Southampton. Saints have a tremendous home record overall but have only won twice in their last seven at the St Mary’s Stadium so the Tykes might fancy their chances of nicking a draw, a result bet36 rate at 15/4.

Doncaster also face a tough task, away to second-placed West Ham so they too are huge underdogs, this time at 8/1 with Betfred and Skybet make Rovers 7/2 to return with a respectable point. Bet365 price Chesterfield at 5/1 at Stevenage in League One and it’s 10/11 via Coral for a Rotherham triumph over Plymouth.

Odds supplied by www.betrescue.com