Bolt-on value at the Riverside

  • By: Craig Chisnall
  • Last Updated: November 30 2013, 14:43 GMT

Craig Chisnall previews this weekend's action in the Sky Bet Football League and fancies Bolton to beat Middlesbrough.

Jermaine Beckford: Back among the goals
Jermaine Beckford: Back among the goals

New Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka makes his Riverside Stadium bow this weekend - but I'm backing in-form Bolton to spoil the party.

Jose Mourinho's former assistant, appointed as Tony Mowbray's successor a fortnight ago, began life at Boro with a 2-1 defeat at Leeds last weekend.

So the last thing he and Boro, who are just five points above the drop zone, need is a visit from a team who have won their last three and are unbeaten in eight matches.

After a woeful start to the campaign that saw the Trotters, my title tip before a ball was kicked, fail to win any of their first ten games they have got themselves together.

With a squad packed full of quality they were always likely to come good but their resurgence has coincided with an upturn in Jermaine Beckford's form in front of goal.

The former Leeds and Leicester hitman scored just once in the opening 11 games since his summer move from the Foxes but he's since bagged five in six.

With a striker in such supreme form and their leaky defence finally being plugged at the other end they are great value at 5/2 with BetVictor.

Notts County finally earned their first point in three games under Shaun Derry on Tuesday at Bradford, unfortunately for them the form team of the division are next up.

Brentford head to the rock-bottom Magpies with six wins in their last seven games, a run that has reignited their promotion hopes after a slow start.

The latest of those wins was a superb 3-2 success over fellow high-fliers Peterborough. Uwe Rosler's men were 2-1 down with nine minutes left but such is the quality they possess this season they turned the game on its head thanks to late goals from George Saville and Clayton Donaldson.

Giant striker Donaldson now has ten goals for the season and has four in his last four games. If he continues to get the right service he will be a constant threat to County and will fire the goals to push the Bees even closer to the top two.

You can get the Bees at evens and that looks great value to me.

Another team who had an inconsistent start but are on the up are Plymouth . With the squad they've put together I expected them to be challenge for the top seven this term and there's still time for them to do that.

But it's only in recent weeks that they've started to string results together and Tuesday's 1-1 Devon derby draw with Torquay was their sixth match unbeaten in League Two.

After a woeful couple of years that has seen the Pilgrims drop from the Championship and stare at the financial abyss their huge fanbase deserves something to cheer about.

They are now up to 14th in the table and have a striker in Reuben Reid in superb form. His penalty at Plainmoor was his fifth goal in three games and another win this weekend would really ignite their push for the play-offs.

They are 6/4 to make it four home wins on the spin and that's well worth considering.


New Sky Bet customers: Claim free £5 bet every week