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Midweek Playoff Tips: 14th-16th May
by David Lenton
We have an unusual week this week with one playoff semi final match being played every evening from Monday night through to Thursday night.
I’ve taken a look at these and come up with some predictions for all games aside from Monday nights.
My tips being with the two Championship play-off games on Tuesday and Wednesday as first off Aston Villa travel to the Hawthorns to take on West Brom leading that tie 2-1 from the first leg, while Leeds defend a 1-0 lead earned against Derby at Pride Park.
The final game of the week sees Sunderland face a long trip south to take on Portsmouth at Fratton Park with the Black Cats leading 1-0 from a tight and edgy first leg at the Stadium of Light on Saturday night.
These games are always packed with tension and drama and with the whole season on the line, anything can happen. Let’s take a closer look now at our tips for these games.
Football Betting Tips: Tuesday 14th May
May 21, 2019
May 21, 2019
West Brom finished 4th in the Championship earning 80 points from 46 games. Scoring 87 goals (second best total) and conceding 62.
Villa finished 5th earning 76 points from 46 games. They scored 82 goals and conceded 62. They have lost just one of the last 14 games.
The teams met 3 times this season. Drawing 2-2 at the Hawthorns before West Brom won 2-0 at Villa Park in the League, then there was Villa’s playoff semi-final win on Saturday.
Villa have won just one of the last five between the teams, with West Brom winning two and two games being drawn. Villa last won at the Hawthorns in April 2011 (a 2-1 win).
A dramatic game at Villa Park saw West Brom take the lead before Villa fought back to go back in front thanks to a penalty and then Dwight Gayle, West Brom’s goalscorer on the day, earned a second yellow card which means he is now suspended for the second leg.
That is a real blow for West Brom as Gayle had been their best player in the first leg and their leading goalscorer this season. Also, with just one recognised striker now available for selection, the Baggies look understaffed in attack at the most crucial point of their season.
Villa have no such concerns and they will be delighted with the manner of their comeback in the first leg and they will also take heart from earning a draw at the Hawthorns in the league, well before their excellent run of form led to them charging into the playoffs.
With Gayle, I’d have given West Brom a chance here but without him, I just fancy Aston Villa to do enough to earn a share of the spoils on the day, as they did in the league game, and if they can do that, they will be the team moving on to Wembley.
Leeds finished third in the Championship with 83 points from their 46 games. Scoring 73 goals but conceding just 50, the third lowest total.
Derby finished sixth with 74 points from 46 games. Scoring 69 goals and conceding 54. They lost 13 times during the season, the same as Leeds.
The teams have met 3 times this season, Leeds winning all three games. They won 4-1 at Pride Park in the league and 1-0 there in the playoffs, plus 2-0 at home.
Leeds have won five of the last nine between the teams, with two wins for Derby and two draws in that time. Derby did win at Elland Road last season, a 2-1 victory.
Kemar Roofe’s contested penalty handed Leeds a narrow lead from their away leg with Derby County on Saturday in what was a feisty and often controversial encounter between the teams at Pride Park. The victory being Leeds third in three games against the Rams this season.
It is going to take a monumental effort for Frank Lampard’s team to get back into this game at Elland Road, where Leeds have been very strong this season and in truth, it does look like being a step too far for this young but talented Derby side.
If they have hope, it is in the fact that Leeds form over the last few weeks has been particularly erratic and that saw them drop out of the automatic promotion slots in the table. However, they looked back on it in the game at Pride Park and with 40,000 home fans roaring them on, it is hard to see how Derby can pull back here.
Derby do have a chance and if they get the first goal all bets are off, but I just feel with home advantage and that away win, Leeds have the edge psychologically as well as in terms of the score and on home soil, I’d expect them to win the game, though I do feel we will see more goals at both ends than we did on Saturday.
Leeds to win & both teams to score - £10 returns £36.00
Portsmouth finished 4th with 88 points from 46 games, scoring 83 goals, the second highest in the division and conceding 51 total.
Sunderland finished 5th with 85 points. They netted 80 goals but conceded just 47, losing just 5 games over the course of the season.
They have met 4 times this season. The league games finished 3-1 to Portsmouth and 1-1, Portsmouth won the Football League Trophy on penalties and last week’s playoff semi.
Sunderland have won just 2 of the last 13 between the teams. Portsmouth winning six of those games in total since February 2008.
There was plenty of drama in this game between the teams on Saturday night as Sunderland finally got one over Portsmouth this season thanks to a fine second half strike from Chris Maguire. However, the Black Cats will have to face Pompey without Alim Ozturk after the centre back was sent off for bringing down Gareth Evans late on in the game.
Over the course of the season Portsmouth have had the better of the games between the two teams, especially at home where they inflicted one of Sunderland’s five defeats of the season in a 3-1 win and they will be hoping for a similar result on Thursday.
However, Sunderland have proven to be extremely resilient this season and if they don’t win games, they have battled hard to ensure that they don’t lose them either. The game on Saturday was very even, including when Sunderland went down to 10-men, so I feel Thursday’s game could be equally level.
As such, I can’t quite see the home side doing enough to take the win they will need here. Sunderland can grind out results when it matters and I think they will do that here, earning a draw which would be enough for them to reach Wembley.
David 'the Cheeky Punter' Lenton is an ex professional online sports bettor and trader with over 15 years of experience in the industry. He has also worked for a number of top bookmakers including Bet365, Ladbrokes, William Hill and Coral. With such a long time spent dedicated to the gambling industry no one is better placed when it comes to advising punters. Follow on Twitter @thecheekypunter