U’s can continue impressive winning streak
Rochdale v Oxford United
Thank you to my chum Kevin Hatchard for looking after these here parts (as Gareth Keenan would say) recently, I’ve suggested a job swap for a week again in the future, something that could work with my Bundesliga non-knowledge. Tchuss to Kev then. Fairly sure that means cheers, if it doesn’t, apologies.
Oxford have been in rip-roaring form for quite a while now, although it has taken an absolute age for last season’s playoff finalists to hit top stride. They’ve been scoring for fun in a spree of late bagging plenty of goals during their five-game winning streak.
Saturday’s 2-0 home success against Bristol Rovers wasn’t scintilating according to boss Karl Robinson, but they had too much class thanks to a brace from Matty Taylor. That’s 16 goals in five games for the U’s and they face a Rochdale team known for their slack defending.
Over 2.5 Goals looks an obvious play, but so does the price at 1.715/7, and that’s shorter than we like to take usually. Even the Over 3.5 is a little on the skinny side at 2.89/5, but Dale do hold the worst record defensively at home this season with 21 goals shipped in.
The visitors will be waiting on the fitness of Marcus McGuane – a key man in Robinson’s system. But it’s hard to fancy Rochdale even at a big price as they just don’t win enough matches at home so the price of the visitors at 1.9110/11 is probably about right.
Pompey can bounce back after Hull debacle
Portsmouth v Lincoln City
My old nemesis Hull popped up again on Saturday with their biggest win of the season – hammering Pompey 4-0 in a breathtaking performance akin to Champions. I still get them wrong on every single occasion, and if I had been involved in that game, I probably would have picked Pompey.
It was mystifying, and typical of the division. Only previously, Kenny Jackett’s side had turned over the Tigers 2-0 at the KCOM. They hadn’t conceded a goal in six games either prior to Saturday’s debacle.
Lincoln are dangerous at 3.55, and that’s a big price for a team that win plenty on the road – seven in fact. They’ve only conceded five on their travels too and only Sunderland can better that defensive record.
The Imps looked rusty in their recent victory against Northampton, but not for the first time this season, a side coming off the back of a covid-enforced break has done well. They found a way to win that game without being at their best.
However, I think Pompey will bounce back in this and whilst it could be a tight game, am happy to stick with the hosts at 2.26/5.
Goals on the cards in Wiltshire
Swindon Town v Plymouth Argyle
Swindon still cannot add to their wonderful performance in front of the Sky cameras against Ipswich. They were superb that evening, typified by the passing build-up to Scott Twine’s goal from 35-yards. Since then, they have been beaten by Doncaster and earned a point at Charlton in a pulsating 2-2 on Saturday – that was a thrilling game by all accounts.
But can we trust Swindon?
It seems the market and layers only like the look of goals for this. The Both Teams To Score price is prohibitive at 1.635/8, which is the shortest I’ve seen for that bet for while. Likewise the Over 2.5 looks no value at 1.728/11. It’s not a surprise as both of these have history. Swindon have hit the BTTS in all six of their previous games, whilst Plymouth have shipped in 22 already on the road.
The Green have been showing some improved form of late and their passing style game might be better suited to this. But I wouldn’t have them as favourites and don’t really like their price of 2.68/5.
It could be a 1-1 or 2-2, but the back of the Draw seems sensible to me, as backing either DNB offers no value.