Football Preview: 29th April

A disappointing result last week with both selections failing to win their respective games.  I think it does highlight the dangers when making selections at this time of the season, as teams who seem to be in considerably better form fail to perform as they perhaps take the foot off the gas when having nothing to play for.

We have a full programme across the Football League this weekend, with final games in League One and the penultimate fixtures across the Championship and League Two.  Again, it will be a fine balance trying to find those sides who will play to form and those who maybe already have an eye on a summer holiday.

Saturday Selections:

Sheffield Wednesday to Win Away at Ipswich – Best Price: 11/10 Bet365, Bet Victor

Sheffield Wednesday need just one more point to secure their place in the Championship top-six and look to be the form side going into the season close, with five wins on the bounce.  The Owls have been building a decent Championship side over the past couple of seasons and look to have some stability under Carlos Carvahal, losing in the play-off final last season and looking to go one step better this year.  They perhaps lack goals, comparative to the sides around them, and don’t have the 20+ goal a season man you perhaps need to challenge for the automatic positions.  Whilst their away form hasn’t been as strong as others around them, without being bad enough to be overly concerned.

If safety was the sole aim for Ipswich then they have achieved it comfortably enough in the end.  By most accounts they are not a pleasing side to watch, in typically Mick McCarthy style, no free flowing football or high scoring but very tough to beat, which is generally good enough for safety.  There has been a few shaky moments in the season when it looked as if they could be dragged into a relegation battle but some late season form with three wins in four saw them pull clear.  Since those wins and with safety assured they have the look of a side who have taken an early holiday, even managing to lose to Rotherham last time out – no disrespect to Rotherham but they are clearly not cut out for this level, winning just five games all season.

The away form and low scoring of Sheffield Wednesday could be a concern here, but they will be looking to continue their momentum into the proverbial lottery that is the play-offs and look to have some value against an Ipswich side who have potentially shut-up shop for an early holiday.

Plymouth to Win at Home to Crewe – Best Price 20/23 Bet Victor

This could potentially have the feel of a season ending homecoming parade, as Plymouth use their final home fixture of the season to take multiple laps of honour in celebration of their promotion from League Two.  Fixtures like this can be very dangerous to back as form can really go out of the window, it might be a brilliant atmosphere at Home Park as fans and players come together to celebrate the achievement, but the better side could be distracted and you could potentially see more waves to the crowd than shots on goal.

However, with the recent lull in the form of Doncaster the door has been opened to the possibility of Plymouth securing the league title.  Just two points behind Doncaster, I’m banking on Plymouth being fully focused on securing the three points to finish their home campaign on a high and leaving themselves a chance to win the title.

Crewe, on the other hand, really do have nothing to play for.  After a few hairy moments during the season when it looked as if they could be in a relegation scrap they have managed to pull clear of that threat.  After the upturn in form that saw them pull clear of relegation they have experienced a dip in form, losing three out of four before winning at home to the doomed Leyton Orient last time out.  Their away form has been pretty poor this year and with nothing to play for, other than pride, they may struggle to gee themselves up for a long trip to the South-West.

Plymouth look overpriced for a home win, at a shade of odds-on, given the form, so it’s hard to get away from the selection despite the potential dangers.

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Sheffield Wednesday & Plymouth – 1pt Double @ 2.93 (BetVictor)