The Championship | 24th September 2016

[symple_heading type=”h2″ title=”Derby County v Blackburn Rovers” margin_top=”20px;” margin_bottom=”20px” text_align=”left”]

Blackburn are apparently useless, awful, certain to be relegated according to many, all of which may be true but it’s a fact that they only have one point less than Derby. I’m not a fan of the ‘looking at the league table’ approach to betting being the be all and end all. I instead prefer to see shot data as a key factor in a teams current and predictive future performance. Derby have attempted 110 shots this season, joint 6th highest in the league, yet only 27 of these shots have been on target, with only two finding the back of the net. Only Rotherham and Leeds have had less shots on target, whilst no team has scored less goals, obviously that’s a problem but over the course of the season I expect them to improve that statistic and climb the league table. That’s a large part of the reason I have them as a 1.98 shot to win this game, if the odds were based on the league table as it stands Derby would have to be priced at 2.3x.


Despite my belief that Derby will improve, they are too short to win this match and therefore have to opposed. Looking at the market we are able to get Blackburn onside and also have to safety of a narrow Derby County victory. The +1 Asian Handicap line means that stakes will be returned if Derby win by a single goal, I personally believe that this line should be priced at 1.49 therefore I’m taking the 1.80.


[symple_heading type=”h2″ title=”Fulham v Bristol City” margin_top=”20px;” margin_bottom=”20px” text_align=”left”]

Bristol City are one of the better attacking sides in this division at the moment, they’ve currently attempted ten more shots than anybody else and with only 26% of these on target there’s plenty of room for improvement. Fulham by contrast aren’t as entertaining, but they do look better than last season due to an improved defence therefore I don’t believe they’re be looking over their shoulders at the relegation zone.

Home advantage is seen as a massive factor in football, which I agree with in some form and the basic stats suggest around 42% of matches end with a home victory at this level. However there is a case to be made that this is skewed by the strength of the sides at the top of the division, in truth there is very limited advantage to playing at home for the mid-table sides in this league and that’s where I believe shot data is even more crucial.


With Bristol City being the better side going forward and also winning at Craven Cottage in the week I want to side with them in this.


[symple_heading type=”h2″ title=”Leeds United v Ipswich Town” margin_top=”20px;” margin_bottom=”20px” text_align=”left”]

An interesting game for me as my numbers make Ipswich strong favourites, a lot of that is to do with what i said above regarding home advantage playing less of a part in results once you get away from the top sides in the league. Leeds United are no longer a top side in this division and I actually think they’ll be in the relegation battle this season. They may have won back to back games, but Blackburn and Cardiff are currently propping up the league.


My goal expectancies have this as Leeds United 0.83 v 1.24 Ipswich Town. These sides are very similar offensively, however Ipswich are the better side at the back. I’m expecting Ipswich to have more shots on target and therefore I believe they are the most likely winners in a low scoring game. However it’s possible to get some draw cover by taking the 0 Asian Handicap line.


[symple_heading type=”h2″ title=”Wolves v Brentford” margin_top=”20px;” margin_bottom=”20px” text_align=”left”]

I’m still not convinced by Wolves, before the season started we were told they were going to spend a sizeable amount of money in the transfer market, with many predicting they’d take the league by storm. The money didn’t really materialise and they currently sit tenth in the table. Wins at Wolves and Birmingham are excellent results, but in between those two results they lost at Huddersfield, before a home draw with Burton and a 4-0 defeat at Molineux against Barnsley.

Brentford are a team that I really like, they were unlucky with injuries last season yet still managed to finish ninth. They now have Scott Hogan back and he’s firing on all cylinders, they’ve added Sullay KaiKai to the squad and they look a real threat going forward. With John Egan marshalling the defence they also look very well organised. Their last two away games have been at Brighton and Aston Villa where they gained four points. Another trip to the West Midlands should hold no fears.


BACK BRENTFORD 0 ASIAN HANDICAP at 2.38 (Bet Victor, 888 Sport)

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