It’s been a brilliant couple of weeks in the Championship in the betting stakes, with eight consecutive winners putting us in a very profitable position. There were just two midweek games with Birmingham and Leeds landing the both teams to score bet and Middlesbrough leaving it late to come through with a vital 2-1 win over Reading to take them to the top of the table.
This weekend sees the Smoggies taking on bottom club Bolton which should result in victory but the odds are a little too short for our liking. Meanwhile, the chasing duo of Brighton and Burnley attempt to play catch up as the Seagulls face a home tie against Fulham, and the Clarets travel to Birmingham. Both of those games feature in our weekly tips, as do Rotherham for the third week running as they host Nottingham Forest.
Rotherham v Nottingham Forest
Rotherham look massive at +131 with Marathonbet to get the better of Forest and all but ensure their Championship status.
We’ve backed Rotherham to take at least a point from each of their last two games, and they duly obliged with a 1-1 draw away at Bristol City and a thumping 4-0 win at MK Dons last weekend. It’s now six wins and two draws from eight games with Neil Warnock in charge and they can keep the good run going at home on Saturday.
It’s been a remarkable escape from the foot of the table, when at one point Rotherham looked dead and buried. They managed just one win from their first 10 games in 2016, and after the 1-0 defeat at Reading in late February they were six points from safety and just a point off the bottom. A 2-1 home win over Brentford kick-started the revival and they’ve gained 20 points from a possible 24 to move nine points clear of safety above the drop zone. It’s highly unlikely that MK Dons or Charlton will win the necessary 3 or 4 games to catch up, but for the Millers the task is simple – One more win will put them on 49 points and practically guarantee they will be plying their trade in the second tier again next season.
That excellent run has coincided with a terrible run for Forest, and surprisingly the two sides are now level on 46 points. Forest have lost 9 of the last 11 Championship games with just a 1-0 win over Preston and a 1-1 draw with Hull to show for their efforts. New boss Paul Williams saw an improved display at home to Brighton on Monday night, but they still went down 2-1 to Steve Sidwell’s late strike. Rotherham is a tough place to go at the best of times, but with the home team in such great form and the visitors looking vulnerable, this stands out as one of the bets of the weekend.
Brighton v Fulham
Over 2.5 goals has been a consistent pick for Fulham games and they rarely let us down. That’s the call again when they travel to the south coast to take on promotion-chasing Brighton at -125 with Marathonbet
Chris Hugton’s seagulls were flying early in the campaign but a mid-season slump saw them come back to the chasing pack. They now sit in third place but only four points behind leaders Middlesbrough and two points behind second placed Burnley. With five games to go it is going to be a fight to the finish, and they’ll fancy this as a good opportunity to keep the pressure on with another three points. Brighton’s last four games have all had three goals or more and with 58 they are among the division’s top scorers. They’ve also conceded 39 though and that’s the worst defensive record in the top five.
Fulham are the division’s second top scorers with 63 goals, but they are also one of the worst teams defensively with a huge 67 in the goals against column. Three consecutive 2-1 victories over MK Dons, Preston and Cardiff have lifted them away from the relegation zone to the relative safety of 17th, and that should comfortably be enough to see them survive in the Championship. They are able to play with a little bit of freedom now and will be looking to build on those results, but Brighton are fighting for a shot at the Premier League so this will be a well-contested Friday night affair.
Birmingham v Burnley
Finally we’re backing Burnley to snatch three points from a tough-looking away game at Birmingham at +120 with Coral
The Clarets rose to the top of the league after a great run of six wins on the trot, but three successive draws with Wolves, Brighton and Cardiff saw Middlesbrough take advantage and go above Sean Dyche’s men. the 1-0 home victory over Leeds last weekend was a welcome return to winning ways and they currently occupy the second automatic promotion spot with just five games to play. They could be down to third place if Brighton take maximum points from Fulham on Friday night, and there is plenty of incentive for Burnley to push for a win here.
Birmingham were given a bit of play off hope with the 2-0 win at Reading last week with all other results going in their favour, but the 2-1 home defeat to Leeds in midweek must have knocked the stuffing out of them. It was their third loss in four matches and their second consecutive defeat at home. They’re now nine points behind 6th place and any chance of promotion has surely evaporated.
Burnley have won three of the last four away games and they are unbeaten in the Championship in this calendar year. They can take another step back towards the top flight with a win on Saturday afternoon.
Rotherham to beat Nottingham Forest
Saturday 16th April, 15:00 GMT
Brighton v Fulham – Over 2.5 Goals
Friday 15th April, 19:45 GMT
Burnley to beat Birmingham
Saturday 16th April, 15:00 GMT