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This weekend we say goodbye to February and hello to March in this Leap Year. Four year’s ago, on February 29, Claudio Ranieri’s Leicester were top of the Premier League on their way to a sensational league title. Tottenham and Arsenal were second and third on the ‘extra’ day of the year while Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool were NINTH in the table, 18 points behind the Foxes. How times have changed with the Reds charging towards their first ever Premier League title this season with a 22-point gap between them and their nearest challengers Manchester City. Liverpool can edge closer to their 19th domestic title with victory at Watford on Saturday evening. Charlie Mullan has analysed all 45 top matches being played in England this weekend picking out games that should be considered for BTTS and over 2.5 goals accumulators based on recent trends and historical data.
BTTS: Rotherham v MK Dons, Bradford v Plymouth, Oldham v Newport
It’s still all to play for at the top of League One after the top two drew on Tuesday night when Freddie Ladapo gave Rotherham a lead midway through the first half only for Coventry to level two minutes into the second half. The draw leaves Rotherham top on goal difference, and Paul Warne’s side will be expected to beat MK Dons on Saturday. The Dons are in danger of being dragged into a relegation battle although the 10-point gap between them and Tranmere who currently occupy 21st spot in the league should be enough to keep them clear of danger. Ladapo scored twice when these two sides met at Stadium MK on November 23 when the Millers came from 2-0 down with just 24 minutes remaining to win 3-2. Tuesday night’s draw at Coventry was the fourth time in Rotherham’s last five games in which there were goals for both Rotherham (1/2) and their opponents.
MK Dons (5/1) will be encouraged that the last two visitors to the New York Stadium have scored against the league leaders. The Dons were unable to back up last weekend’s 1-0 home win over Bolton in midweek when they were beaten 3-1 at Portsmouth. Alex Gilbey levelled the match at 1-1 on the stroke of half-time but Pompey secured victory with a goal at the start of the second half and another in injury time. It was the third time in the Dons’ last four games in which BTTS has paid out. BTTS has also paid out in seven of the last eight meetings including the last three. SportPesa are offering odds of 20/27 for BTTS to land in this fixture while a score draw is trading at 33/10. Rotherham are 7/4 to win with at least one goal for the visitors who are 8/1 to win with BTTS paying out.
In League Two, Bradford (7/4) host Plymouth (31/20) hoping the Bantams can avoid losing their third successive league game. Trips to Cambridge and Newport on the last two Saturdays, have ended in 2-1 defeats. On both occasions, Bradford actually took the lead and they will be hoping that if they get their noses in front against Argyle, they can hold on to win. Bradford’s last four league games have seen BTTS land and their meeting with the Pilgrims in November saw Plymouth winning 2-1 after racing into a 2-0 lead after 25 minutes.
I could also have chosen this game for an over 2.5 goals accumulator given the fact Bradford’s last three league games and five of Plymouth’s last six away games have seen three or more goals scored, but I’ll opt for BTTS. In their last away game, Plymouth salvaged a 1-1 draw at Macclesfield who led until the 84th minute when Antoni Sarcevic found the net to earn Argyle a point. SportPesa are offering odds of 10/13 for both teams to score while odds of 14/5 are available for this fixture to end in a score draw. Bradford are 15/4 to win and BTTS landing while the visitors are 33/10 to win with at least one goal for Bradford.
Oldham (33/20) welcome Newport County (17/10) to Boundary Park looking to end their four-game run without a win. The last time Athletic celebrated a win was on February 1 when they beat Bradford 3-0 at home. Since then, it’s been two defeats on the road to Crewe and Exeter before back-to-back draws with Forest Green at home and away at Leyton Orient. All four of those games saw goals for both Oldham and the team they were playing so there is a good chance BTTS will pay out in this fixture against a Newport side that were beaten 4-2 at Grimsby on Tuesday night.
Things started badly for the Welsh side who conceded within the first minute and it got worse as the game went on. It was the second game running in which Newport were involved in a game where BTTS has occurred. SportPesa are offering odds of 10/11 for BTTS to pay out in this game while a score draw is on offer at 59/20. Oldham are 17/4 to win in front of their home fans with at least one goal for Newport who are 4/1 to win with BTTS landing.
Over 2.5 goals: Burton v Peterborough, Forest Green v Leyton Orient, Grimsby v Northampton
If you had bet on over 2.5 goals in Burton’s last three League One games and Peterborough’s last four league games, then you’d be a lot better off financially. Burton’s 3-2 win at struggling Southend on Saturday was their third successive match in which three or more goals had been scored in matches involving the Brewers. Before that five-goal thriller, Nigel Clough’s side were on the wrong end of a 4-1 defeat at Ipswich four days after squandering two leads at home to Oxford before drawing 2-2.
Peterborough’s six-game winning streak came to an end last weekend at Fleetwood where they were beaten 2-1. It was the fourth consecutive game and sixth in their last seven involving Posh in which over 2.5 match goals has paid out. SportPesa are offering odds of 20/23 for three or more total goals to be scored at the Pirelli Stadium this weekend while odds of 11/10 are available for both teams to score and combine for over 2.5 goals. Burton are 33/10 to win with a minimum of three goals scored while the visitors are 13/5 to win with at least three goals netted.
Forest Green (20/23) hopes of returning to the play-offs are all but over after they continued their winless run in League Two to eight when they lost 1-0 at Scunthorpe last Saturday. A goal at the start of the second half was their undoing and Mark Cooper will be hoping their first home league win of 2020 comes in their clash against Leyton Orient (3/1). The last time Rovers gave their fans a home win to celebrate was on December 29 when they beat Macclesfield 1-0. Since then, it has been five successive defeats at the New Lawn including their 3-2 loss to Port Vale who did their best for Forest Green to get something from the game. Leading 3-0 with 12 minutes to play, Vale conceded twice and had two players sent off but Rovers were unable to find an equaliser. It was Rovers’ fourth home game in which three or more goals were scored.
Orient’s 2-2 draw at home to Oldham last weekend was the third successive game featuring Orient in which there were at least three goals scored. When these two sides met in November, they shared six goals with Rovers claiming the win after a brilliant first 45 minutes. Leading 3-0 at the break, Rovers went on to win 4-2 in the first ever competitive meeting between the two sides. Considering the fact these two sides shared six goals three months ago, SportPesa are offering generous odds of 21/20 for three or more goals to be scored this time. Odds of 7/5 are available for both teams to score and combine for three or more goals while Rovers are 41/20 to win with over 2.5 goals paying out. Orient are 6/1 to win with three or more goals scored.
Ian Holloway has transformed Grimsby (9/5) since he took over as manager on New Year’s Eve. Since then, the Mariners have won six of the 13 league games Holloway has been at the club and that includes their 4-2 win at home to Newport on Tuesday night. To put that run into context, Town had won five of their first 22 matches with Michael Jolley and Anthony Limbrick in charge of the team. This fixture could have been included in the BTTS accumulator given the fact it has landed in Grimsby’s last eight games. But over 2.5 has paid out in seven of those matches and the last four at Blundell Park where a total of 17 goals have been scored in those four fixtures. Town have failed to keep a clean sheet in all but one of the games Holloway has been at the club – and that one game was his first game in charge when they beat Salford 1-0.
Northampton (8/5) are the visitors to Cleethorpes this weekend and if their last three league and cup games away from the Sixfields Stadium, then we could be in for plenty of goals. Their last league game on the road was their trip to Cheltenham on Tuesday night when they got off to the perfect start scoring the opening goal in the third minute. However, they were unable to hold on and lost 2-1 with Luke Varney scoring the winner five minutes from time. SportPesa are offering odds of 11/10 for this fixture to produce three or more goals while BTTS and over 2.5 is trading at 7/5. Grimsby are 15/4 to win with over 2.5 goals paying out while the visitors are 3/1 to win with a minimum of three match goals scored.
A £10 bet on the BTTS accumulator has potential returns of £58.70
A £10 bet on the over 2.5 goals accumulator has potential returns of £80.40