Published on May 8th, 2013 | by Sportingly Better Tipster0
Championship Play-Off Predictions – 9-10 May
Leicester City secured their play-off place in the Championship at the expense of rivals Nottingham Forest, but Watford’s defeat at home to Leeds meant the Hornets missed out on automatic promotion.
Elsewhere Brighton picked up a routine win against relegated Wolves and Crystal Palace picked up a dramatic 3-2 win against Peterborough to secure their spot in the top six.
Sportingly Better picks out the best free football tips from both semi-finals of the play-offs this week.
Football League Predictions
Leicester (2.00) v Watford (3.60); Draw (3.50)
Anthony Knockaert scored an injury time winner as Leicester booked their place in the play-offs and the Foxes will be hopeful of registering an advantage in the first leg against Watford.
Only Crystal Palace have scored more goals at home in the Championship than Leicester City and Nigel Pearson’s side will be keen to fire themselves in front at the King Power Stadium.
Leicester have won just three of their last 17 games in the Championship, but just one defeat in their last six saw the Midlands club sneak into the play-offs.
The Foxes biggest issue continues to be in defence, with Leicester having failed to keep a clean sheet in any of their last 13 matches in the league and a shut-out by Leicester on Thursday is as high as 2.75 on some Football League betting markets.
Leicester have conceded two or more goals in each of their last five matches in the Championship. Back Watford to score over 1.5 goals at 3.00.
Visitors Watford will need to pick themselves up after the disappointment of missing out on automatic promotion to Hull last weekend and Gianfranco Zola faces a delicate task of restoring his side’s belief.
The Hornets have won just three of their last 10 games in the Championship and mixed final day fortunes for both sides could see the London club drift even further in the match odds with many betting sites, despite Watford’s 2-1 success at the King Power Stadium just over a week ago.
Watford are the Championship’s top scorers this season with 85 goals, but striker Troy Deeney will be missing after being shown a second yellow card against Leeds.
No side has scored more goals than Watford on the road this season and away goals will be on the agenda for Zola with Championship Player of the Year Matej Vydra leading the line.
Historically this fixture has been full of goals with seven of the last eight meetings going over 2.5 goals and with continued defensive issues for the home side, expect both sides to find the net in the first leg on Thursday.
Both teams to score (Leicester v Watford) @1.72
Over 2.5 goals (Leicester v Watfodrd) @1.95
Crystal Palace (2.50) v Brighton (2.80); Draw (3.30)
Two goals from Kazenga Lua Lua were enough to give Brighton their third win on the bounce and the Seagulls carry the best form of any of the play-off hopefuls going into the semi-finals.
Gus Poyet’s side have the best defensive record in the league this season conceding just 43 goals and the experience and consistency of Wayne Bridge, Bruno and Matthew Upson at the back have helped Brighton cement a strong back line.
Brighton have lost fewer times (6) away from home than any other side in the Championship this season and avoiding defeat on Friday could give the Seagulls the upper hand going into the second leg at the Amex.
Hosts Crystal Palace have lost just twice at home all season and the Eagles go into Friday’s match having lost just one of their last 22 matches at home in the Championship.
Ian Holloway’s side have scored 52 goals at Selhurst Park this season, with Championship top scorer Glenn Murray having scored 24 of his 30 goals in front of the home crowd.
Crystal Palace have scored two or more goals in 16 of their last 20 matches at home. Back Crystal Palace to score over 1.5 goals at 2.50.
Palace’s win over Peterborough on the final day of the season was the London club’s first victory in 10 league games and the Eagles will need to quickly rediscover their winning touch at home if they are to beat their in-form opponents on Friday.
Draw (Crystal Palace v Brighton) @3.30
Author Credit: Jonathan Day
Image Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jamesboyes/