With the excitement of opening day out of the way, the Football League clubs all played their League Cup first round matches in midweek.
Attention now returns to the league and with the excitement of the opening day fixtures now out of the way, teams will be concentrating on making the best possible start to their respective league seasons.
Plus on Sunday, there’s the added bonus of the Community Shield as Manchester United face Wigan Athletic.
Sky Bet Championship
After coming back from 1-0 down to beat Barnsley 2-1 last weekend, pre-season title favourites QPR continue their season back in the Championship against another Yorkshire side, Huddersfield Town.
The Terriers were shaded out by a side tipped for the play-off spots, Nottingham Forest, on opening day and will be desperate to make it up to their fans in their first home league match of the season at the John Smiths Stadium.
The live Sky Sports match this weekend is on Sunday afternoon as Leicester City host Leeds United. Leicester are another side tipped for success this season after falling just short over the past few years and are favourites to win this one, Bet Victor offering the best prices of 4/5.
Leeds United shouldn’t be written off though after Brian McDermott’s side recorded a dramatic late win over last season’s play-off semi-finalists Brighton last week thanks to a stoppage time winner from Luke Murphy. Paddy Power provide the best odds on a Leeds win at 4/1. The game can be seen live from 4:30 on Sky Sports 1.
Sky Bet League One
Wolves are strongly tipped by the bookies to win League One this season but they were tipped out of the League Cup this week after a shock defeat at Morecambe.
They’ll be desperate to make amends for that further embarrassment with a win over Gillingham at Mollineux on Saturday afternoon and are 5/6 favourites with William Hill. Ladbrokes provide odds of 4/1 on a Gills victory.
Carlisle have suffered a mixed opening week to the season and face a tough trip to Bradford City on Saturday afternoon. Greg Abbott’s side suffered a heavy 5-1 loss to Leyton Orient on the opening day of the season but bounced back with a penalty shootout upset victory over Blackburn Rovers on Wednesday.
Newly-promoted Bradford got their season off to a solid start last weekend with a 2-2 draw at Bristol City and are expected to win this one, Bet Victor offering odds of 5/6 whilst William Hill are pricing Carlisle at 4/1.
Sky Bet League Two
Following their 4-1 unpicking on the opening day of the season, many bookies have re-evaluated their League Two outright odds. The South coast side began the season with the best price of 5/1 but can now be found at 7/1 with Sportingbet.
Their campaign continues live on Sky Sports 1 on Saturday lunchtime as they make the long trip to play Accrington Stanley, a team four divisions below them less than ten years ago. Pompey are slight favourites for victory at 31/20 with Bet Victor whilst Accrington are priced at 2/1 with Ladbrokes.
The Community Shield is usually regarded as a final (slightly more competitive) pre-season season game for the two sides competing but for Wigan Athletic, their Championship season has already begun.
Wigan’s day of glory in May saw them lift the FA Cup for the first time in their history but just a few weeks later they found themselves relegated from the Premier League. The Lancashire side become the first side outside of the top flight to feature in a Community Shield game since West Ham in 1980.
Understandably, they are huge outsiders to add to their 2013 silverware cabinet and a number of bookies, including Totesport, are pricing them at 10/1.
With just a week before David Moyes’ big kick-off with Manchester United, Sunday’s game at Wembley will seem like a final friendly match for the ex-Everton boss. The Reds are the most coveted Community Shield winners, with 15 outright wins to their name and the best odds on them winning on Sunday are with Bet Victor at 4/11.
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