Sky Bet EFL betting tips: Weekend best bets

Last Updated August 12 2017, 16:34Football
James Maddison of Norwich City
James Maddison of Norwich City

Nick Hext has an anytime goalscorer fancy for Sunday's Sky Bet Championship clash between Norwich and Sunderland.

Pick of the weekend matches

James Maddison to score in Norwich v Sunderland, Sky Bet Championship (Sunday, 1330 BST)

There's one Sky Bet Championship match on Sunday as Norwich host Sunderland at Carrow Road. It's an intriguing clash between two sides with new managers and aspirations of promotion. I reckon Sunderland will finish some way off the pace but Norwich look in better shape to at least challenge for a spot in the play-offs. Daniel Farke's Canaries opened with a decent 1-1 draw at Fulham and I'm backing young midfielder James Maddison to play a key role this season. The former Aberdeen loanee netted in the Carabao Cup victory over Swindon in midweek and 4/1 is a decent price to get on the scoresheet for the second match in a row.

Recommended bet: Weekend EFL

4pts Middlesbrough to beat Sheffield United at 47/50 - my headline promotion pick must be trusted at close to even-money to win at home

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TV game

Middlesbrough to beat Sheffield United, Sky Bet Championship (Saturday, 1730 BST, Sky Sports Football & Main Event)

There's only one match in Sky Bet EFL live on Sky Sports this weekend and I'm backing Middlesbrough to get the better of Sheffield United at the Riverside. I stated my case for Boro to win promotion as the headline pick in my ante-post preview of the new Championship season. Garry Monk's men lost 1-0 at Wolves on the opening day of the campaign but I'm also keen on the Molineux outfit so that outcome hasn't concerned me. Sheffield United battled for a 1-0 win over Brentford on their return to the second tier but I reckon they'll end the season some distance behind Boro. Close to even-money makes plenty of appeal for the home win on Saturday and it's a price that won't be around long if Boro challenge as I expect.

Where to go away

Wolves to beat Derby (Saturday, 1500 BST)

It also shouldn't come as any surprise to followers of my ante-post tips that I like Wolves at over 2/1 to win on the road at Derby. Nuno's big-money recruits impressed in a 1-0 victory over Middlesbrough in their opening match and they are my tip to surprise in the race to finish in the top two. Derby are a solid outfit but they don't have the quality that Wolves possess and can't be taken as such big favourites for this Pride Park contest. The price is more than right to get with Wolves.

Ivan Cavaleiro of Wolves
Ivan Cavaleiro of Wolves

Home favourites to back

Blackburn to beat Doncaster, Sky Bet League One (Saturday, 1500 BST)

I argued in my team-by-team preview that Blackburn can't be taken as such short favourites to win the Sky Bet League One title. That remains my opinion but Rovers are a better side than Saturday's opponents Doncaster and there won't be too many chances to get close to even-money for Tony Mowbray's men to win at home this season. Blackburn started the campaign with a 2-1 defeat at Southend but there were signs of fight as they battled back from 2-0 down at the break. A 3-1 Carabao Cup victory at Coventry in midweek has raised spirits and Blackburn are worth backing for victory against Doncaster, who opened with a disappointing 0-0 draw at home to relegation contenders Gillingham.

Swindon to beat Exeter, Sky Bet League Two (Saturday, 1500 BST)

Swindon impressed on the opening day of the season as they won 2-1 at Carlisle. The Robins followed that up with a creditable showing as they lost 3-2 at Sky Bet Championship heavyweights Norwich in the Carabao Cup and everything point to a home win against Exeter on Saturday. The 17/11 for the Robins to beat the Grecians is well worth an interest especially after David Flitcroft bolstered his squad with the £350,000 acquisition of Wigan striker Kaiyne Woolery. Flitcroft has put together a strong squad after taking charge at the County Ground and his side look better primed for a promotion push than Exeter, who lost key forward Ollie Watkins to Brentford during the summer.

Posted at 0700 BST on 11/08/17.

Related links

Weekend football fixture list
Sky Bet Championship odds

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