Look Sharp and back Billy

  • By: Craig Chisnall
  • Last Updated: January 28 2014, 19:55 GMT

Craig Chisnall previews the midweek Sky Bet Football League action and fancies Billy Sharp to find the net for Doncaster.

Billy Sharp: Back at Doncaster and fancied to find the net
Billy Sharp: Back at Doncaster and fancied to find the net

By his own admission, Billy Sharp and Doncaster Rovers have a special bond - that's why the 2/1 offered on him to score at any time on his second home debut at the Keepmoat must be jumped upon.

Rovers won the race for Sharp's loan signature from Southampton last week and he immediately proved his worth by scoring their equaliser at Blackpool that secured a precious point.

The 27-year-old was a huge hit with the Donny faithful in his first spell with the club - scoring 41 goals in 86 games before he was sold to the Saints for £1.8m two years ago.

But after a fine start on the south coast he's barely figured since Mauricio Pochettino took over from Nigel Adkins last season.

Loan spells at Nottingham Forest and Reading have followed and the Royals were keen to take him for the rest of the season before Paul Dickov swooped for his services.

And he could well be the difference for Rovers in their survival fight. He's also joined a team that have started the New Year encouragingly. They were unlucky in defeats to QPR and Blackburn before walloping Wigan 3-0 in their last home game and drawing 1-1 at Bloomfield Road at the weekend.

If they maintain their performance levels it means Sharp will get chances and as everyone knows he's more than likely to take at least one of them.

In League 1 Colchester and boss Joe Dunne go about their business with the minimum of fuss but they are going along very nicely at the moment.

The U's have won four of their last six to climb comfortably into mid-table and with limited resources that's no mean achievement.

Dunne has got a great mix of young and older players at Cuckoo Farm with the likes of Sanchez Watt, Freddie Sears and new permanent recruit Sam Walker all starting their careers again in Essex after failing to make the grade at the top level.

They also have the likes of seasoned campaigners Clinton Morrison and David Wright to call upon and if they maintain this form they could make a late charge for the top six.

The Shrews would love just one win right now - and will make the long trip on the back of four successive defeats and six in their last seven, a run that has seen them plummet into the bottom four.

They also have rookie caretaker Michael Jackson in charge following club legend Graham Turner's departure as boss last week.

I can't see anything other than a home win so take the 6/5 with Sky Bet while you can.

In League 2 I'm putting my faith in relegation-threatened Torquay to upset the form book and beat high-fliers Burton in new boss Chris Hargreaves' first home game.

The former Gulls captain has had to bide his time to take his place in the home dugout at Plainmoor after being appointed on January 6 with their crunch clash with rock-bottom Northampton falling victim to the weather eight days ago.

But in his two games so far he's seen his side win 2-0 at AFC Wimbledon and then beaten narrowly at Oxford on Saturday.

By all accounts they were a little unfortunate to lose at the Kassam Stadium and that will give them plenty of heart heading into this clash.

The Brewers have a lengthy injury list and defeat in a match delayed until 4pm because of the weather on Saturday to fellow high-fliers Fleetwood won't have done much for their confidence.

That 90 minutes on an energy-sapping pitch plus a long trek south in midweek is far from ideal and I believe the Gulls are well worth a punt at 11/5.


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