League One Tips: Bolton look good for a Hillsborough surprise

Sheffield Wednesday manager Darren Moore
Darren Moore's Sheffield Wednesday haven't justified their tag as one of the pre-season favourites

With a handful of League One games on despite the international break, our third tier expert Alan Dudman is going against the big guns this weekend...

"Bolton have hit a run of form and have been heavy scorers on the road with a 1-4 success at Charlton and a brilliant 2-5 at Ipswich."

Back Alofayan to score first and Bolton and Draw with Betbuilder @ 8.84

Don't be lured into short price on Cook's men

Ipswich Town v Shrewsbury Town
Saturday 9th October, kick-off 15:00

A truly bizarre set of results last weekend showcased the ups and downs of League One, confirming once again that form goes out of the window and you should never be put off by a big price. I am hardly going to crow about Wycombe's short price win thanks to a 92nd minute goal, but Sheffield Wednesday lost again, Sunderland were beaten 4-0, MK Dons lost to bottom club Doncaster who had previously been beaten 6-0 and Charlton scored twice on the road - something they hadn't managed all season.

With the international break, we only have four matches in the third tier but Ipswich backers again will be slightly apprehensive with the 1.855/6 price on offer for Saturday against Shrewsbury.

That stats from Opta point to a fairly emphatic home win here; as the Shrews have lost five of their last six away and Ipswich have lost just once in their last 16 matches at Portman Road. The hosts also have a fine record against the Shrews - as they haven't lost a head-to-head in their last 13.

However, Paul Cook's men remain in 19th and he described last weekend's 2-1 loss to Accrington as a shocking performance. Citing all individual battles lost and bar one player, no one came out with credit.

Only two points separate the pair in the table, although Shrewsbury have failed to win on the road thus far, but they have stayed in games and held Wednesday to a 1-1 at Hillsborough recently. We can seek out some value in backing the draw as Ipswich have been held four times at home, and on form, they don't deserve to be 1.855/6.

KEY OPTA STAT: Ipswich have lost just one of their last 16 home league games (W6 D9), beating Doncaster 6-0 at Portman Road last time out. However, in this run of 16 they've won consecutive matches just once, vs Plymouth and Bristol Rovers in March/April.

Paul Cook 1280.jpg

Owls still searching for consistency

Sheffield Wednesday v Bolton Wanderers
Saturday 9th October, kick-off 15:00

With Wednesday priced up at 2.447/5, it highlights what poor value Ipswich are, but the Owls themselves are going through their own troubles in living up to the pre-season hype, and a current position of 12th is not what anyone had envisaged.

Boss Darren Moore has invested heavily in the squad with a complete overhaul, but they've only won twice at Hillsborough with just five goals in four games scored. A 2-1 home defeat against Oxford last weekend was another path towards the road of inconsistency.

Moore, like Cook, is still seeking out his best starting XI. They play with a high intensity at pace, but they looked tired last weekend. Their play to involve the front two was also lacking in that first loss at home all season.

Wednesday haven't totally convinced so far, and even Shrewsbury gained a point in west Yorkshire recently in a 1-1.

Bolton have hit a run of form and have been heavy scorers on the road with a 1-4 success at Charlton and a brilliant 2-5 at Ipswich.

Boss Ian Evatt said earlier in the season that when they get it right, teams can't live with them. They play at a high intensity and are quite expansive with the ball, maybe a little too open at times, but as Evatt has mentioned previously; when teams go toe-to-toe with them, they are dangerous.

Oladapo Afolayan has hit six in 12 in the league, a forward who has done well to bounce back after his release from West Ham as a youngster. Eoin Doyle also has four and takes penalties, and they do have goals from midfield in Antoni Sarcevic.

Backing the Trotters on Draw No Bet makes sense at around 2.47/5 as they are a dangerous side.

With the multiples offer available with the Betbuilder on the Sportsbook, there's a juicy 12.4 double available backing Bolton to win and Afolayan to score first.

KEY OPTA STATS: Sheffield Wednesday have conceded three goals in their last two home league games (D1 L1), as many as they had in their previous seven at Hillsborough combined (W4 D2 L1).

Go green against Burton

Plymouth Argyle v Burton Albion
Saturday 9th October, kick-off 15:00

Plymouth's fine home record is on the line this weekend as they look to remain unbeaten (W3 D3) against a Burton team who are another in the inconsistent bracket.

Despite that, the Greens have struggled historically in this fixture, and according to the Opta Stats, four of the last six league games between these two have ended as draws, with both sides winning a game apiece in the other two games. The draw can be backed at 3.3512/5. The Brewers have also drawn four of their last seven in the league.

Brendan Galloway and Luke Jephcott will both be missing due to international call-ups, and Jephcott's goals will be missed as he has formed a potent partnership with Ryan Hardie. However, Ryan Lowe can call upon players coming back with experience, so Kieran Agard could get a rare start, a first in over 600 days.

This will be a clash of styles as the hosts are a good footballing team. Lowe will be aware of how Burton approach games, as fresh in the memory is their 1-1 from last season when everything was thrown into their box from out wide and long-throw ins.

Last weekend's 2-2 at Lincoln proved somewhat painful with a 90th minute penalty conceded, having led twice in that game a point was gained. The run is now 10 unbeaten for the Greens and they don''t look a bad price for Saturday considering it's the best run in the division.

KEY OPTA STAT: No League One side has scored fewer away goals than Burton Albion this season (2, level with Doncaster and Shrewsbury).]

Click here to read Ian Lamont's League Two preview, which includes the Saturday SKY TV game


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