BOOKMAKERS have high expectations of Wednesday winning promotion from the Championship next year.
With Norwich and Southampton having recently gone straight through the division after leaving League One, the Owls are 25/1 to win the Championship title next season and 6/1 to go up.
Bookies are not alone in being optimistic about the club’s future, with chairman Milan Mandaric also setting his sights on reaching the top flight as soon as possible, and believing that is where the club belong.
Wednesday have proved right the tipsters who last summer installed them as second favourites for this season’s League One title: they finished runners-up, to Charlton, Sheffield United’s chances of entering the Championship betting now depend on their play-off campaign, which begins at Stevenage tomorrow.
The Lamex Stadium will be rocking for the semi-final first leg as the Blades seek to improve on their recent 2-2 draw with the Boro.
United are 8/13 to qualify for the final, with Stevenage 6/5.
The Blades are an uneasy 2/1 as favourites to win at Wembley and clinch the last promotion spot. Stevenage are outsiders at 4/1.
In the other semi-final, there is not much between MK Dons and Huddersfield, and we cannot split them, offering 10/11 each to qualify, with the Terriers 5/2 and Dons 11/4 to secure promotion.
Sheffield United can be backed at 9/5 at BetVictor to take a first leg lead to Bramall Lane, with Stevenage just favoured at 8/5 and a stalemate 9/4.
Away goals do not count but the Blades would settle for a draw in front of the Sky cameras and will hope to finish the job at home in front of another full house.
The World Snooker Championship success of Ronnie O’Sullivan ended in tears for us earlier in the week when we refunded all losing bets placed before the start of the tournament as a result of our Rocket refund.
The brains trust have not rested on their laurels, however, and they have come up with another cashback for the forthcoming Euro 2012; place a bet on the outright market before the first ball is kicked in Warsaw on June 8 and BetVictor will refund losing stakes up to £50 if holders, world champions and 5/2 favourites Spain follow up. Yes, I can’t believe it either.
The final round of Premier League fixtures this weekend sees champions elect Manchester City (1/8 favourites to win their first title in 44 years) entertaining QPR, who are likely to need Stoke to do them another favour against Bolton at the Britannia Stadium.
The Potters conceded a late winner to Rangers on Sunday and can do the London side another favour if they beat Bolton. Stoke are 8/5, Bolton 17/10 and the draw 12/5.
St Leger third Sea Moon is due to reappear at either Chester or Ascot later in the week and should not be opposed with the Sir Michael Stoute yard beginning to hit form after a slow start.
The Derrinstown Stud Derby Trial at Leopardstown on Sunday has been won by some top-class colts and the hope is that Akeed Mofeed is straight enough to do himself justice for the John Oxx yard having missed a bit of work recently with a minor scare.
The selection must run well if he is to become a serious candidate for next month’s Epsom Derby although his handler suggests the race will come a week too soon for the son of Dubawi.