Bookies believe Hillsborough draw is possible

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Sheffield Wednesday’s fight for promotion is definitely their main priority this season but as they turn attention to the FA Cup, the Owls will get a taster of what life will be like if they reach the second tier, when they tackle Championship high-flyers West Ham.

As one full division separates the two sides, Gary Megson’s troops are 2/1 outsiders with Betfred while the Hammers are considered slight favourites at 6/4 by Skybet and Victor Chandler offer 12/5 for the tie to require a replay.

As the Owls are unbeaten at Hillsborough and enjoy home advantage, a stalemate isn’t out of the question and Blue Square offer 6/1 for the clash to finish one-each. Having seen their side register an impressive nine victories and two draws in eleven home fixtures however, Wednesday supporters might be a touch more confident.

For them, Ladbrokes post 7/2 against an Owls success by a one-goal margin, bet365 price a 2-1 success for Megson’s charges at 10/1 and it’s 6/1 via Paddy Power for the tie to throw up a mini-upset in the shape of a home win following on from a level first period.

Also handed a home draw, but one that on paper is a touch more straightforward, were Sheffield United, who welcome non-league Salisbury to Bramall Lane. Inevitably, the Blades are strongly fancied by bookies, Partybets posting 1/5 against their quality ultimately telling and Victor Chandler quoting 16/1 for the visitors to cause a major shock while William Hill rate Danny Wilson’s men at 11/10 to prevail ‘to nil’ and more precisely, it’s 7/1 with Stan James for Sheffield United to strike three times without reply.

At Oakwell, Barnsley stand a good chance of eliminating top flight opposition as they tackle a Swansea outfit for whom this competition is far from a priority. The Tykes tempt then at 21/10 (Ladbrokes) to send the Swans tumbling out of the competitions at the first attempt and Paddy Power price them at 4/7 to either win or draw.

Elsewhere, Doncaster are 11/10 via Betfred as they tackle League One Notts County and Boylesports make Dean Saunders’ side 11/4 to edge the resilient Magpies out by a solitary goal.

Meanwhile, in League One, bottom club Chesterfield have the chance to draw closer to the teams directly above them as they host fellow strugglers Exeter. Stan James mark 5/4 against the Spireites hauling themselves three points closer to the Grecians in 20th place and as the visitors have the worst away scoring record in the division, some punters might want to back John Sheridan’s team at 7/1 (William Hill) to grab the game’s only goal.

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