Charlton v Sunderland
The first of our Jan 5 League One betting tips is Charlton v Sunderland. We have a reduced service in the English League One this weekend due to goings on in the FA Cup. The nation’s favourite knockout competition is sure to prove popular with punters; you will find an in-depth preview of our matches of note from that competition, including expert betting tips; however, we shouldn’t overlook our bread and butter. The FA Cup is great but it’s a bit of a minefield for backers with the romance of it all bringing a share of uncertainty. As such, there will be no lack of backers sticking to the safe ground of league football and the form that comes with it.
Charlton was impressive in the second-half of 2018 and picked up a run of results that threw them into contention for promotion. A place in the play-offs looks to be their best bet at present; however, there’s no reason they can’t force their way back into the Championship. The club has the structure of a side belonging at a higher level and the quality of squad to get out of the third tier of English football; it’s just up to the current pool to go and prove it. They won three-in-a-row at the tail-end of 2018 and had stats of 13-4-7 after 24 games.
Black Cats on the Comeback
Sunderland, like their opponents, are a former Premier League contender who have fallen on hard times and dropped through the ranks of the game as a consequence. The Black Cats dropped to back-to-back relegation in each of the last two years and many expected them to suffer an unwanted treble this term, given their continued off-field problems; however, they appear to have finally steadied the ship and are firing back. Promotion to the Championship would be an ideal way to prove to fans they are again moving in the right direction and, at this stage, a title win is possible.
They suffered a rare defeat in December when going down to Portsmouth at Fratton Park, dropping a 3-1 result to the league leaders; that was a loss that threatened to knock their campaign off-track. They showed the quality and character needed to bounce back to winning ways at the first time of asking; however, when dishing out a 1-0 defeat at the Stadium of Light to a hard-working Bradford side who turned up intent on making trouble. McGeady scored the only goal of the game to delight the bulk of a stunning 46,000 crowd, one of the nation’s highest attendances that day. The players showed real bottle to perform under increased pressure.
Prepare for Drama
This will be the second meeting of these rivals this season following Sunderland’s 2-1 win over Charlton at the Stadium of Light back in early August. The beaten side took the lead that day when Taylor scored from the penalty spot on 10 minutes; however, The Black Cats battled hard to overturn the scoreline; Maja evened things up on 65 minutes, before Gooch netted a winner on 90 to deliver a body blow to the Londoners. Neutrals will be hoping for more of the same.
That result fell into line with the recent form and both teams have found the net in seven of the last eight meetings. That won’t be ignored by followers of the form and we advise adding both teams to score with odds of 5/4 at BetFred in the accumulator of the day. That will work best alongside five or six similar picks and we’re confident it’ll be weighed in as a winning leg well before the end. Those eager for their stake money to work a bit harder can try their luck on the bigger price about both teams to score in a Sunderland win with odds of 9/2 at Bet365. That will keep things interesting.
Scunthorpe v Coventry
The other of our Jan 5 League One betting tips is Scunthorpe v Coventry. Scunthorpe United are in all kinds of trouble stuck down at the wrong end of the pecking order; they’re facing a season spent fighting against the drop. A plunge into League Two football would be disastrous for all concerned; however, it’s a real possibility at the time of writing after winning only five of their first 24 matches.
A record of 5-6-13 had them one point better than bottom club Plymouth Argyle and a run of defeats suggests things won’t be improving any time soon. Scunthorpe lost 2-0 against Bradford and Luton in quick succession as their goal drought continued. It’s difficult to make a strong case for them beating any side at this level in their current form and we don’t expect them to attract too much attention here.
Dark Skies for Sky Blues
If their hosts have been struggling, Coventry haven’t had things too much better and a run of defeats wrecked their dreams of securing a promotion play-off spot. They are now closer to the relegation zone than promotion places and appear to be going backwards. Coventry suffered a run of hurtful defeats, including a 2-1 reverse at the Ricoh Arena in December when Luton came calling.
They were able to stop the rot on Boxing Day, however, when bouncing back to secure an overdue win; they managed to beat high-flying Charlton 2-1 in front of a relieved audience. Mayifuila opened the scoring just before the half-time interval but that advantage was cut-out by Pratley who scored on 58. Neither side could’ve complained about the draw; however, there was to be one final twist in the tale as Bayliss smashed home what turned out to be the winner with 89 minutes on the clock.
Side With Away Day
Neither side bring convincing form, but Coventry are capable of better; that performance and win over Colchester would’ve injected real confidence into the ranks. If The Sky Blues play to the best of their abilities, they are more than good enough to add another three points to their tally, moving them towards the safety of mid-table.
Play this one simple and back the Coventry win – 6/4 at Bet365. Those after more should chance their luck on both teams to score in an away win – 4/1 at BetFred and we fancy that as a good bet given the fact both defences have been poor so far this season.