It’s back to the hurly burly of the Championship this weekend and there are some huge battles both at the top and bottom of the division. Brighton have surged back into the top two and the automatic promotions places with a six-game unbeaten run, but Middlesbrough could leapfrog them for 24 hours at least with a point or more at QPR on Friday night. The Seagulls host leaders Burnley in the Saturday lunchtime kick off in a title-race six-pointer.
At the other end of the table Fulham and MK Dons are both engaged in the battle to avoid the drop, and their meeting at Craven Cottage could go a long way towards determining where both sides end up when the season finishes. They are separated by a single point, with MK Dons just inside the relegation zone and Fulham poised precariously above it. That game is this week’s headline pick, where there should be plenty of goals on the menu.
Fulham v MK Dons
We’ve backed Fulham games to feature over 2.5 goals regularly this season and the -114 on offer with Marathonbet about them combining with MK Dons for at least three goals is a decent price.
Apart from the bottom two sides – Charlton and Bolton – Fulham have the worst defensive record in the entire division with 64 in the goals against column. But apart from the leaders Burnley, they are also the highest scorers in the division with a whopping 57 strikes in the goals for column. Unfortunately the results haven’t gone for them and with just two wins in the last ten and a run of six without a win, they are staring over the precipice.
MK Dons probably expected this season to be little more than a survival battle, and that’s exactly what they’re in the thick of right now. The run of ten games with just three defeats that they’re currently on has given them a chance though, and both Fulham and Rotherham are well within striking distance. They’ve conceded some 51 goals in 38 matches, but it’s at the other end where they’ve struggled with just 32 in the goals for column. However, they come up against one of the weakest defences in the league on Saturday so there will be few better chances to add to that tally.
With just eight games left in the season, draws are not ideal for either side and this should be an open game with both teams gunning for the win. That in turn should lead to plenty of goals and over 2.5 is the call.
Brighton v Burnley
Brighton and Burnley face off in a title-race special at lunchtime on Saturday, and it’s the draw that makes most appeal at +225 with Marathonbet
Chris Hughton has worked wonders with Brighton this season, restoring his reputation after a torrid time with Norwich City, and they moved back into the top two at the expense of Middlesbrough after winning 2-1 at MK Dons in the last round of fixtures. With 13 points in hand over 7th placed Cardiff a play-off place is virtually assured, but Brighton will have bigger things in mind as they look to make an unlikely leap into the Premier League.
They’ve lost just once in the last 12 games and have now won five of the last six at home, after a run of three defeats over the Christmas period at the hands of Middlesbrough, Ipswich and Wolves. Those are the only three games they’ve lost on home soil all season though, having won 13 and drawn 3 of the other 16 fixtures on the south coast.
Burnley meanwhile have been in imperious form of late, and haven’t tasted defeat in the league since Boxing Day when they went down 3-0 to Hull. They are four points ahead of Brighton at the top and a point here would keep that rival at arms length. A run of six wins in a row was brought to an end when they were held to a 1-1 draw by Wolves last time out, but Sean Dyche’s men are in pole position to see out the last six games and return to the Premier League at the first time of asking.
Neither side will want to lose this game and have confidence dented, and it is expected to be a very tight and cagey affair in which the draw looks the value call.
Huddersfield v Sheffield Wednesday
Finally we’re sticking the neck out to baco over 2.5 goals at +125 with Marathonbet when Huddersfield host Sheffield Wednesday.
The Owls have had a good season this term and currently hold on to 6th place and the final play-off position. A pair of 3-0 victories over Charlton and Nottingham Forest has left them three points clear of Cardiff in 7th, and they will be desperate to stay in the top six over the course of the next six games.
Huddersfield are eight points clear of the relegation zone, making them practically safe, but have no pretensions on the play-offs either so there is little at stake but pride for the Terriers. However, they’ve been in decent form recently with 3-1 and 4-1 wins over Reading and Hull sandwiching a 3-1 defeat at the hands of Burnley.
With Wednesday likely to come looking for a win, and Huddersfield playing with the freedom of a side that has no immediate relegation concerns, this one could be a surprisingly open game with plenty of goalmouth action. Over 2.5 goals looks a touch of value at a big price.
Fulham v MK Dons Over 2.5 Goals
Saturday 2nd April, 15:00 GMT
Brighton and Burnley to Draw
Saturday 2nd April, 12:30 GMT
Huddersfield v Sheffield Wednesday Over 2.5 Goals
Saturday 2nd April, 15:00 GMT