Jackson out to earn another win in charge
Charlton Athletic v Doncaster Rovers
Saturday 30th October, kick-off 15:00
We finally had a last minute goal going FOR us on Saturday with Wycombe's 97th minute winner. What a time to score and the 2pt bet was landed to give us some ammunition for Saturday and the Valley.
No team has won fewer home points in League One this season than Charlton (5, level with Crewe Alexandra), with the Addicks last picking as few home points at this stage in 2012-13 (also five). So that's the bad stat out of the way with.
If you had offered me 1.8810/11 on the Addicks under Nigel Adkins two weeks ago, I would have treated the price with disdain. But Johnnie Jackson replaced Adkins for last Saturday's trip to Sunderland, and gave an excellent audition in terms of staking his claim for the job on a permanent basis as, rather surprisingly, the Londoners won 0-1, only their third success of the season.
Owner Thomas Sandgaard told the Evening Standard that the 39-year-old could be in the frame down the line, and even Alan Curbishley has been mentioned. Maybe that's why he didn't appear in the betting for the Newcastle job? Tongue in cheek of course!
A couple of interesting lines came out of that game from Lee Johnson who said: "You have to give them credit, they've performed very poorly over the last three or four weeks and it makes me sad for Nigel Adkins to see them put that level of effort in. As a manager, you feel for another manager there."
So was it a case of the players simply downing tools under Adkins? The new system helped with a move to a 3-5-2 and George Dobson playing as a holding player shielding the backline was a success and good move. It was noted their work-rate and energy was greater than anything under Adkins. The players seem to like Jackson, and the fans certainly do, which makes a big difference to how the atmosphere has been at the Valley recently.
Doncaster have only picked up their wins at home this season and have lost their first seven away league matches - they haven't lost their first eight on the road in a Football League campaign since 1929-30 in the Third Division North. That's a damning enough stat from Opta to make them opposable here allied with perhaps the worst ever away goal difference at this stage in the history of football; they've scored just twice with 16 goals let in.
With their impotency in front of goal, we can back Charlton to win and Under 2.5 Goals on the Betbuilder via the Sportsbook at 3.59.
KEY OPTA STAT: Doncaster have never kept a clean sheet in seven away league games against Charlton. They've failed to score in five of these seven games, but have won both times they've managed to find the net (2-1 in March 2009, 3-1 in September 2020).
Latics can banish the Tuesday curse
Wigan Athletic v Burton Albion
Saturday 30th October, kick-off
Since Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink's first away league game back in charge of Burton on January 9th this year, no side has won more away League One points than the Brewers (35, level with Sunderland), which certainly was a surprising stat from Opta. This season on the road is adequate; winning two, drawing two and losing four. However, like Doncaster on the road, they are finding goals hard to come by with just four.
Although their league position under Jimmy in 8th is not to be sniffed at - that's an excellent start.
Wigan's home form recently is slightly patchy for one of League One's top teams; and I regrettably backed them at home to the MK Dons - a game they lost 1-2. And they suffered another home defeat on Tuesday at the hands of Lincoln, who might just be finding their consistency. Finally.
Just like the Boomtown Rats didn't like Mondays, Wigan clearly don't like Tuesdays as they have failed to win in midweek all season. Bizarrely they have lost their last three successive home Tuesday matches by a 1-2 scoreline. Which can be backed at a massive 17.5 on the Correct Score market.
Their game has lacked their usual zip and high tempo recently, but they have too much quality throughout their side to ignore, even if they are on the skinny side at 1.804/5.
Wigan's Will Keane has scored in three of his four league matches against Burton, netting three goals - one for Hull in April 2018 and in both games for Wigan last season. So if you are looking to boost the home price, backing Keane to score anytime and a home win on the Sportsbook pays 3.36 with the Betbuilder.
KEY OPTA STAT: After losing their first ever Football League meeting with Burton in November 2015, Wigan are unbeaten in their last five against the Brewers (W2 D3).
Greens can maintain their grip at the top of the table
Plymouth Argyle v Ipswich Town
Saturday 30th October, kick-off 15:00
There must be something attractive at the moment for backers or indeed layers with Plymouth, as on every Thursday, their liquidity is by far and away the most of any fixture in League One on the eve of a weekend. And this is a big game.
The Greens are top under Ryan Lowe, and their unbeaten record at Home Park (W5 D3 L0) is on the line with Ipswich in town. With one of the best home attacks and finest defences, this should be fairly straightforward shouldn't it backing the hosts at 2.546/4?
Argyle are unbeaten in their last 14 league matches (W8 D6), last having a longer unbeaten run between August and December 2001 (19 in a row), which shows how much the club is getting it right on and off the field. I've praised the strike partnership of Luke Jephcott and Ryan Hardie on numerous occasions this term, with Jephcott on five from 16 and Hardie bagging 10 in 18.
Lowe likes his teams to play, and he knows what expect this weekend by saying: "They've got a fantastic squad and a fantastic manager. They're now picking up to where they should be, which I knew they would.
"It's going to be an entertaining game - they've scored 29 goals to our 26, so both teams are scoring goals. They've conceded 22 and we've conceded 13 so it all bodes well for a good football match."
The Plymouth Live local paper highlighted what a wonderful job the 43-year-old has done, as he has picked up 150 points from 97 league games under his tenure since he arrived from Bury in the summer of 2019. He averages 1.54 points per game and 1.43 goals per match. Impressive stuff.
Ipswich have won five of their last eight and there's a feeling they are really finding their groove - especially since the hammering of Portsmouth at Fratton. I still think Plymouth are a decent price here in a game that could throw up goals.
KEY OPTA STAT: Ipswich Town are looking to win three consecutive league matches for the first time since March, while this would be the first they have achieved the feat under current boss Paul Cook.