The Championship weekend could scarcely have got off to a more entertaining start on Friday night, and hopefully we get more of the same on Saturday when the remainder of the fixtures take place in the face of Storm Dennis.
It seems like there is a top of the table showdown every week at the minute and are two more on Saturday while events at the bottom of the standings will also take on another twist over the course of a big day of action.
Saturday’s fixtures are as follows: (3pm unless stated)
West Bromwich Albion v Nottingham Forest (12.30pm)
Birmingham City v Brentford
Cardiff City v Wigan Athletic
Charlton Athletic v Blackburn Rovers
Derby County v Huddersfield Town
Fulham v Barnsley
Leeds United v Bristol City
Middlesbrough v Luton Town
Preston North End v Millwall
Queens Park Rangers v Stoke City
Sheffield Wednesday v Reading
One of those top of the table clashes comes in the live televised game which gets the action underway as the leaders West Bromwich Albion look to move nine points clear at the summit when they host Nottingham Forest. The other high profile match in the afternoon sees Leeds United hosting Bristol City with both sides eager for the three points to propel their promotion challenge. At both ends of the table the match between Fulham and Barnsley could be extremely significant too.
Best of the Rest
Brentford in fourth are deeply involved in the automatic promotion race and they head to the in form Birmingham City on Saturday afternoon while Preston will be looking to hang on to the final play-off spot when they host Millwall. At the other end of the table, Luton will look for successive victories when they head to the Riverside to take on out of form Middlesbrough while Wigan Athletic will be eyeing up points when they head to Cardiff City. Charlton eased their relegation concerns in midweek and another win over Blackburn will go a long way to seeing them survive. QPR and Stoke are two sides who could get reeled in by the bottom three so they’ll both be eager for a win when they meet at the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium.
I’ll go with a couple of bets over the course of the day on Saturday, the first of which comes in the form of Derby County at home to Huddersfield Town. I’ve been quite vocal in the fact that I don’t particularly rate Derby this season but they seem to have turned a corner at home, and after a good start to life under the Cowley’s, Huddersfield have lost their way in recent times. Derby have won their last four at Pride Park while there really wasn’t a lot to like in the Huddersfield loss to Cardiff in midweek. The Yorkshire side have only won one of their last five on the road, which was at Hull which isn’t saying much these days. Derby look to have a great opportunity to bounce back from their midweek loss here.
The other bet I like is for Reading to avoid defeat at Hillsborough against a Sheffield Wednesday side who I saw in midweek and who were horrendous. It isn’t exaggerating it to say that had Luton had their shooting boots with them Wednesday would have suffered the sort of embarrassing defeat that would have had questions being asked over the safety of Garry Monk’s job. As it was Luton somehow only won 1-0 but I can’t be having Wednesday at odds on or evens here. Reading are no great shakes and haven’t won any of their last seven league matches but they have progressed in the cup and have picked up four draws in those seven games, including two against Nottingham Forest. They lost in midweek but there was no shame in being beaten by West Brom. I don’t think that necessarily means they will lose to Sheffield Wednesday. In fact they’ll do very well to lose to them based on what I saw on Wednesday night.
Back Derby County to beat Huddersfield Town for a 4/10 stake at 2.15 with Betway
WON – Back Reading (+0.5AH) to beat Sheffield Wednesday for a 4/10 stake at 1.90 with BetVictor